Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 21, 2012

10 Essential iPhone Tips, New and Old – The iPhone is known for its simplicity, but not everything about it is obvious. Beyond its straightforward grid of apps lies plenty of tricks that make Apple’s phone easier to use. Here are 10 essential iPhone tips and tricks, starting with some basics and moving up to more advanced maneuvers:

There’s an app for everything, even infidelity – There seems to be no limit to the imagination of app creators, who want you to simply be happy — even if it’s with someone else’s husband or wife.

Delaying Windows Upgrades: Do You Feel Lucky? – The release of Windows 8 with its new tile-based Start screen might have you thinking about putting off your OS upgrades. But given that XP is eleven years old, a virtual eternity in the computer industry, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?”

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Create a beautiful map for your desktop background – Looking to jazz up your desktop background? If you like maps, then you are sure to love Stamen Design’s Map-to-Image utility.

Cloud Graphics: Could Your Next Smartphone or PC Use a Virtual GPU? – Nvidia’s throwing its silicon hat in the cloud computing ring with something it’s calling a VGX or “virtualized graphics” card, the idea being to offload virtual desktop (VDI) graphics processing from CPUs to GPUs, something existing virtualization tools don’t do well, if at all.

Why Do We Hate Facebook? – “The low-level hum of discontent, revealed in the recent hysteria over messages is due to our evolving relationship with data. It is a relationship most of us don’t really understand, but it gives us a general sense of foreboding”

Raspberry Pi gets a Gertboard  – This week, modders and devs all around the world began receiving their Gertboard expansion boards for the Raspberry Pi. Essentially, the Gertboard is a mini-accessory board that allows users to interface their Pi with all sorts of other devices – allowing programs running on the Raspberry to open doors, lift items, power robotics and more.

How to enable Night Mode on Dolphin for Android – The latest version of the Dolphin browser for Android can theme Web pages for better night-time reading. We’ll show you how to enable Night Mode.

Show Me The Money – Corporations overwhelm consumers with complex fee structures, pages of fine print. It’s not quite fraud, but it’s close. Regulators must step in to enforce simplicity. Competition won’t do that when the market rewards opacity.

Is the Surface display really superior? – Microsoft is telling customers that its display is sharper than the iPad 3. Let’s ask an internationally recognized research scientist.

10 best tablets for kids – Summary: With the tablet becoming more and more commonplace, here are ten options for getting your kids in on the fun.


HSBC Websites Knocked Offline After Hack – A Thursday attack took down several of the bank’s websites around the world.

Team up to fight cyberattacks, US government official urges – Groups of companies in the same industry could pool infrastructure resources to help each other mitigate the effects of cyberattacks and work together on security issues, a senior official in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security suggested on Friday. The comments by Mark Weatherford, deputy undersecretary for cybersecurity, come as a handful of American banks are dealing with a fourth week of DDoS (distributed denial-of-service) attacks on their websites.

Localized Dorkbot malware variant spreading across Skype – Security researchers from Avast have intercepted a currently spreading Darkbot malware campaign, that’s affecting millions of Skype users.

Company News:

Microsoft Kills Facebook and Twitter Apps on Xbox Live, Adds IE9 – Did anyone really use their Xbox 360 consoles to update Facebook or Twitter that often?

Motorola Lists Smartphones Eligible for $100 Jelly Bean Promo – If you’re a bit bummed that your Motorola device isn’t going to get upgraded to Jelly Bean, will $100 change your mind?

Webopedia Daily:

Dorkbot – A family of malware worms that typically spreads through instant messaging, USB removable drives, websites or social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. Downloading and installing Dorkbot malware results in it opening a backdoor on infected computers, allowing for remote access and potentially turning the computer into a botnet. The Dorkbot worm gained publicity in late 2011 for an attack on Facebook’s chat system, with users receiving a message with a bogus link that appeared to come from one of their Facebook friends. A similar Dorkbot worm appeared later in the same year, this time preying on Twitter users. A new strain of Dorkbot targeting Skype users appeared in October 2012, with the Skype worm also installing ransomware in this case. The ransomware would threaten to lock a user out of being able to use their computer and demand a payment of several hundreds of dollars be made within a limited timeframe or have files on the computer deleted.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Ben Horowitz: Every breakthrough idea looks stupid – Starting a company, the venture capitalist says, requires intense courage, determination, and the willingness to come across as crazy.

FTC Offering $50K to Anyone Who Can Stop Robocalls – Do you know how to stop robocalls? The FTC might pay you $50,000 for your idea.

What “For Elise” Would Sound Like in a Major Key – What if Beethoven’s popular piece “For Elise” was in a major key instead of minor? For those who don’t know the difference between major and minor, it’s really simple: major has a “happy” sound and minor has a “sad” sound.

The perfect-sound myth – If digital recordings were truly better than analog, they would sound more like real music, but digital just sounds different, not better.

Today’s Quote:

Two of the greatest qualities in life are: Patience and Wisdom.”


Today’s Free Downloads:

Wise Care 365 – Wise Care 365 is a bundle of important registry, disk, and other system utilities for your PC. Easy to use and effective, Wise Care 365 is the good solution to improve your PC’s performance.

FotoMorph – An easy way to create professional morphing animations and Flash Rotation Banners. Using FotoMorph you can do everything a professional animator does to create photo animations.



Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

4 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 21, 2012

  1. Michael Fisher

    That dog’s smart! Great pic 🙂

    • Hi Michael,

      You’re right – that dog’s instincts are a lot better than some of the “less in(stink)tive” people I’ve seen become victims of a weaponized skunk over the years. There’s always a little humour in it – but damn – not much. 🙂



  2. “Two of the greatest qualities in life are: Patience and Wisdom.”

    Hey Bill,
    The photo is as great as the quote. I wanna borrow it and make it a poster:-D