Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – January 10, 2013

How Generation Y really feels about online privacy – Do young adults understand the damning effects of oversharing online? You might be surprised to learn the answer.

Global security breaches are now an ‘epidemic’: report – According to one security expert, global security breaches are now comparable to an “epidemic” — and immediate action must be taken. (A personal observation – no kidding!!)

Judge Rules Against Texas Teen Who Refused to Wear SmartID Badge – In a closely watched case, a federal judge today ruled against a high school sophomore who refused to wear a student ID embedded with a radio frequency chip that tracks students’ movement on campus.

Your Next Smartphone May Have X-Ray Vision – Similar to work being conducted at UT-Texas, a new prototype built by Caltech researchers uses cheap chips to generate terahertz waves able to see through clothes, skin, and more.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Scan a T-shirt like a QR code – Nivpat is showing off technology at CES 2013 that lets you scan T-shirts to get more info about the wearer, a business, and just about anything.

Plan Your Free Online Education at Lifehacker U: Spring Semester 2013 – Your education doesn’t have to stop once you leave school—freedom from the classroom just means you have more control over what you learn and when you learn it. We’ve put together a curriculum of some of the best free online classes available on the web this spring for our fourth term of Lifehacker U, our regularly-updating guide to improving your life with free, online college-level classes.

Eleven UK government employees sacked over social media use at work! – The UK’s Guardian newspaper laid into the Department for Work and Pensions yesterday with a story entitled “Eleven work and pensions civil servants sacked for using Twitter or Facebook”.

T-Mobile CEO: Porn Could Kill Shared Data Plans – The new CEO of T-Mobile USA laid into his competitors with very colorful language.

Gigabyte wants you to build your own all-in-one – Trends in the industry, like the all-in-one PC, seemingly make big tower PCs obsolete. Even the boutique suppliers of PC gear are moving into smaller systems, one key example being Falcon Northwest’s Tiki micro-tower. Now Gigabyte and Intel are teaming up to let you build your own all-in-one PC. Intel is developing a standard for modular all-in-one components.

CPU Charts 2012: 86 Processors From AMD And Intel, Tested – Benchmarking 86 CPUs takes a while. After long last, though, we have 51 models from AMD and 35 from Intel tested in our current suite. If you want to know how your processor sizes up to its competition, you’ll find plenty of comparison data inside!

Anonymous petitions U.S. to see DDoS attacks as legal protest – The hacking group claims DDoS attacks are like the Occupy movement — only instead of physical spaces, they’re occupying the Internet.

Facebook Opens Registration for 2013 Hacker Cup – Hackers, start your keyboards: Facebook has officially opened registration for its third annual Hacker Cup, set to begin at the end of this month.

Shopping via mobile devices increased 81 percent in 2012 – U.S. consumers used smartphones and tablets to make $25 billion in transactions in 2012, according to eMarketer data.

Tablets to overtake laptops in 2013 – NPD is predicting 2013 will see the first time that worldwide sales of tablets will surpass sales of laptops. This year, NPD expects 240 million tablets to ship, but only 207 million laptops. In just three years, tablets have become a fundamental pillar of many businesses — most obviously Apple’s.

Before Ubuntu Phone OS: The checkered history of open source phones – Android might be the face of open source mobile software, but it took a long time for free and open to gain traction in mobile.


Using Yahoo Mail? You should turn on this privacy option as soon as possible – It has taken Yahoo a ridiculously long time, but it is finally rolling out an option that will help protect users’ privacy when accessing their web-based email – HTTPS. If you don’t have full-session HTTPS turned on for your webmail, anybody on your WiFi network could read any of the emails you write and receive using a tool like FireSheep, as they are transmitted from Yahoo to your browser.

Critical Ruby on Rails flaws fixed, upgrade immediately – For the second week in a row since the start of the new year, users of open source web application framework Ruby on Rails are advised to upgrade to the newly offered versions immediately due to serious vulnerabilities present in previous ones.

Firefox 18 Brings 21 Updates, Fixes Nearly 3000 Bugs – Developers at Mozilla have pushed out the latest build of their flagship Firefox browser, fixing several security and stability issues for Windows, Mac, Linux and Android platforms.

Company News:

Apple acts against “bait-and-switch” scammers in the App Store – Apple announced today that the bait-and-switch of software screenshots in the App Store will no longer be allowed. Once you submit an app, you’ll have to stick to your original marketing materlal until the app is updated and re-approved. Good thing.

Red Hat takes the wraps off RHEL 5.9 – Red Hat on Tuesday announced the general availability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.9, a new update to the company’s popular open source enterprise platform. Though the software maintains backwards compatibility with hardware and software platforms across the RHEL 5 life cycle, it also brings several key new features to the table. Ready for a rundown? Here are some of the most notable new features in this latest release.

BlackBerry 10 to be carried on AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile – Chief execs with all three top carriers have confirmed that they’ll support devices on RIM’s all-new operating system set to launch in coming weeks.

Windows 8 license sales hit 60 million – Microsoft has sold 60 million Windows 8 licenses, a sales bump of 20 million units since late November when Windows 8 hit 40 million licenses sold. Microsoft’s sales number includes upgrades and sales to its manufacturing partners since it introduced the new touch-centric operating system 10 weeks ago, the company said at an event during CES Tuesday. Microsoft says the sales trajectory is similar to Windows 7.

Webopedia Daily:

Gigabit Wi-Fi – Gigabit Wi-Fi refers to the upcoming 802.11ac Wireless LAN specification that will support data transfer speeds of 433Mbps per spatial stream and up to 1.3Gbps speeds for three-antenna (three stream) hardware. Also sometimes called “5G Wi-Fi,” Gigabit Wi-Fi operates only in the 5 GHz frequency range (where there is currently far less potential for interference), as opposed to the 802.11n spec, which operates in both 5 GHz and 2.4 GHz ranges. Gigabit Wi-Fi products will offer backwards compatibility with previous 802.11 specifications, including 802.11n.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Why the CES cesspool is all our own fault – Most of the products at CES 2013 are ‘solutions in search of problems.’ But we can do better.

The 12 cognitive biases that prevent you from being rational – The lowly calculator can do math thousands of times better than we can, and our memories are often less than useless — plus, we’re subject to cognitive biases, those annoying glitches in our thinking that cause us to make questionable decisions and reach erroneous conclusions. Here are a dozen of the most common and pernicious cognitive biases that you need to know about.

Dvorak: Google, Fix Your Flaws! – To get my news, I often scan Google News, which aggregates articles from around the world based on what the “robot” has determined is trending. It’s all about what’s trending. It generally misses breaking news and totally ignores important commentary, like my column. Instead, it seems to prefer going to dead links—by which I mean the Wall Street Journal, which requires a subscription to read.

The open-source car: automakers eagerly woo app developers – Automakers have had fancy in-vehicle infotainment systems in their cars for several years now, but they’re finally ready to open those closed ecosystems to third-party developers. Both Ford and GM launched open-source developer programs for the SYNC AppLink and future MyLink platforms, respectively. That’s right: The open-source car is finally here, and thank goodness it’s nowhere near as dangerous as it sounds.

Today’s Quote:

“If your mother had her way, everyone would be arrested for walking around naked under their clothes.”

–    Andy Capp

Today’s Free Downloads:

BrowserHistorySpy – Browser History Spy is the all-in-one software to instantly recover or view the browsing history from popular web browsers.

Free Port Scanner 3.0.0 – Free Port Scanner is a small, fast, easy-to-use and robust port scanner for the Win32 platform. You can scan ports on fast machines in a few seconds and can perform scan on predefined port ranges.


Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

4 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – January 10, 2013

  1. Michael Fisher

    Hi Bill

    Re above item:- “Using Yahoo Mail? You should turn on this privacy option as soon as possible”

    I did this & as an experiment tried to undo it, but can’t
    When I uncheck the HTPPS box & save it I’m taken to my log-in screen & when I log in it takes me to a further log in screen & I’m back in Yahoo still in HTPPS mode

    Since I want to be in HTPPS mode that’s fine, but I thought I would report this strange behaviour. May try the operation again with a different browser & cookies cleared to see if that makes a dif.

    • Hi Michael,

      Indeed – you’re dead right. Curious, no?

      I use Yahoo as a repository/backup for my Blog postings (I’m a subscriber 🙂 ), along with several other services. You just never know. I’ve long used HTTPS Everywhere – so, I must admit that I hadn’t noticed that Yahoo lacked this critical component.

      As per your suggestion, I tried both Chrome and Firefox – with a cleared cache, etc. No go. Might be a good thing – all things considered.



  2. Michael Fisher