Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – March 29, 2013

Google Keep vs. OneNote vs. Evernote: We name the note-app winner – Whether you’re about to start using a note-taking app or are considering defecting from your current choice, you must first think about the features you need most. One app may excel at OCR support and another might be best for anywhere access, while a third may be ideal for content sharing within a team. To help you make an informed decision, here’s a closer look at how Google Keep, Microsoft OneNote, and Evernote stack up in a variety of categories.

Invoke god mode to take control of Windows 8 – Control panel settings are typically scattered all over in Windows 8, unless you know about god mode.

Feedly Updates with 10 New Features to Help Ease Your Google Reader Transition – Feedly has updated their interface to make it a bit more friendly to Google Reader converts, while making it easy to switch between all its different views. Its List View is denser now, similar to what Google Reader fans are used to, while also adding keyboard shortcuts, better sorting, and more.

The Best Backup Software – With World Backup Day upon us once again, we can only continue to remind you of the perils of not backing up, and present you with the best tools to protect your data.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Santa Clara launches free outdoor Wi-Fi on backs of smart meters – Here’s a clever idea: Piggyback the installation of connected, smart utility meters with free Wi-Fi service for outdoor use. That’s exactly what the City of Santa Clara is doing. (suggested by Aseem S.)

New Windows 8 hardware specs hint at 7-inch tablets and a Microsoft Reader – A quiet change in the logo requirements for new Windows 8 devices allows Microsoft’s hardware partners to build new devices that would compete with popular 7- and 8-inch tablets like the iPad Mini, Kindle Fire HD, and Google Nexus 7. Could a Microsoft Reader be just around the corner?

Google Glass to roll off Foxconn’s US factory line in weeks – The first run of Google’s Glass networked specs will be rolling off the production lines of device manufacturing giant Foxconn within weeks, according to the Financial Times. While many components are being sourced from Asia, final assembly will happen in Santa Clara, the paper said.

Remains of the Day: Gmail’s New Compose Window Comes to Everyone – Gmail makes its new compose feature standard, Amazon acquires Goodreads, Google starts testing its same day delivery service, and Facebook Messenger gets free calling in the UK.

Know the Difference Between Types of Computer Monitors and Pick the Best One – It may seem like size is all that matters when it comes to buying a monitor, but there’s a lot going on under the hood. This video from Techquickie tells you everything you need to know about LCD monitors as fast as possible.

Tablets Hold Their Own – And Then Some – In Work-Related Application Usage – Data from Forrester’s global Forrsights Workforce Employee survey shows that tablets are being used dynamically and deeply for a wide variety of work-related applications.

Prep an Android for resale – Just upgraded to the latest, greatest Android phone? Here’s how to get your old Android phone ready to sell.


Egypt Captures Divers Trying to Sever Undersea Internet Cables – Internet access in Egypt has been spotty in recent days, and officials may have just discovered why. As Reuters first reported, Egyptian Coast Guard officials caught three divers who were in the midst of cutting undersea Internet cables. The cables belonged to Telecom Egypt, Reuters said. It does not appear that the company has addressed the incident; at this point, it has only posted on its Facebook page a link to a news story about the capture of the divers. The report comes several days after cable operator Seacom experienced an outage in Southern and Eastern Africa.

Evernote account used to deliver instructions to malware – A piece of malicious software spotted by Trend Micro uses the note-taking service Evernote as a place to pick up new instructions. The malware is a backdoor, or a kind of software that allows an attacker to execute various actions on a hacked computer. Trend Micro found it tries to connect to Evernote in order to obtain new commands.

The largest DDoS attack didn’t break the Internet, but it did try – A 300Gbps attack thought to be the largest in the world has put key internet infrastructure to the test, and, so far, the attack has failed.

Researchers find new point-of-sale malware called BlackPOS – POS malware is not a new type of threat, but it’s increasingly used by cybercriminals, said Andrey Komarov, the head of international projects at Group-IB, Wednesday via email. Komarov said that Group-IB’s researchers have identified five different POS malware threats in the past six months. However, the most recent one, which was found earlier this month, has been investigated extensively, leading to the discovery of a command-and-control server and the identification of the cybercriminal gang behind it, he said.

Wisconsin man charged with participating in Anonymous DdoS – He is alleged to have participated in a Feb. 28 attack using Low Orbit Ion Cannon against a Koch Industries website, “” The company is privately held with headquarters in Wichita, Kansas, and has businesses in a number of areas including oil and manufacturing. LOIC is a popular DDoS tool used by Anonymous and other online attackers to overload websites with requests and disrupt the target server.

Company News:

Chinese regulator calls for tighter oversight of Apple – Watchdog wants greater supervision of the iPhone maker’s consumer-right practices in the wake of state-run media reports critical of the company’s warranty policies.

Microsoft adds five more ‘specialty’ outlets to its store roster – Small-footprint ‘specialty’ stores in malls and shopping centers are a new, key focus for Microsoft with its retail-store push.

BlackBerry aims to show it can keep popular apps updated – BlackBerry 10 appears to be off to a solid start, but to be a long term winner popular applications have to keep up with other platforms. That reality means BlackBerry developers may be adding features.

Amazon acquires Goodreads, aims to meld Kindle with social – Amazon on Thursday said it will buy Goodreads, a social site that discusses and recommends books. In a statement, Amazon positioned Goodreads as an acquisition that it would pair up with its Kindle platform. Amazon added that it will “build many new ways to delight readers and authors alike.”

Bitcoin hits record exchange values with Cyprus banking crisis – The peer-to-peer virtual currency is up nearly 350 percent in the past two months, thanks largely to uncertainty in Europe’s banking community.

First Ouya Consoles Shipping to Backers – The early bird gets the worm, or in this case, the new portable home gaming system. Ouya’s $99 Android-based console is now shipping to early backers, and is expected to hit shelves this summer for all consumers.

Webopedia Daily:

Candy bar – A candy bar or candy bar mobile is a mobile phone form factor where the phone is a solid device with no moving parts except for the keypad buttons, and in some cases, the antenna. Because the candy bar style does not have anything covering the buttons these types of phones offer a key guard that prevent keys from being pushed when the phone is not in use. Several mobile phones using the candy bar form factor include the Apple iPhone, RIM Blackberry the Sony Ericsson, and the Motorola (Sprint) MOTO Q.

Games and Entertainment:

Free Game Friday: Expect the unexpected – From unexpected genre mashups to games where everything changes every 10 seconds, this week’s free games are about not doing what you expect them to do.

Journey Takes Game of the Year at GDC Awards – Journey, Thatgamecompany’s third Sony-funded “indie” outing, was the big winner at the Game Developers Choice Awards in San Francisco Wednesday night. The PSN-exclusive title was declared game of the year, beating out finalists Dishonored, The Walking Dead, Mass Effect 3, and XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Journey also took home the award for best downloadable game, as well as acolades for innovation, audio, game design, and visual arts, making it the top winner of the night.

Mozilla wants you to get your game on — in your browser – Mozilla goes gunning for native code speed with a plan to “supercharge” JavaScript, and it wants to use games to spread the word.

Watch the trailer for Broken Age, Double Fine’s Kickstarter game – A little over one year ago, Double Fine posted an adventure game project to Kickstarter and asked for $400,000 in funding. They didn’t announce any details at all at the time of the posting, stating only that it will be an adventure game, and come from a studio headed by one of the most prolific adventure game creators of all time, Tim Schafer. By the time funding closed, it raised $3.3 million.

Surging PC game sales won’t wither when new consoles appear, expert says – The PC gaming market reached $20 billion in 2012, a healthy increase of eight percent over the previous year, the PC Gaming Alliance (PCGA) revealed this week at a news conference held in San Francisco. More than a third of those sales ($6.8 billion) were fueled by increased interest in PC gaming in China, David Cole, an analyst with DFC Intelligence in San Diego, said in a statement.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Homeland Security out of touch with reality – The US government’s Homeland Security Tsar is so far out of touch with technology that she could be living on another planet in another dimension trying to play chess with Schrodinger’s cat.

A Customizable, Digital Avatar That Can Express Emotions – The Wizard of Oz’s trickery has been unpacked by a team of researchers at the University of Cambridge in the UK. Researchers built a virtual “talking head” known as Zoe, capable of expressing human emotions on demand with “unprecedented realism.” Zoe is able to express a full range of human emotions and could be used as a digital personal assistant, or to replace texting with “face messaging.” The virtual face is able to convey emotions like happiness, anger and fear, and changes in Zoe’s voice allow it to add the proper level of emotion in what she is saying as well. (suggested by Aseem S.)

Ban social media as a distraction? No, it boosts productivity – Any manager who thinks staff should be banned from using social media at work is seriously misguided and could be doing grave damage to the business.

Socrates (In The Form Of A 9-Year-Old) Shows Up In A Suburban Backyard In Washington – We all know smart kids, who are curious, who collect information. But this 9-year-old — what he knows is different. It’s not local; it can’t be found looking under a couch. It’s mind stuff, found mostly in books or college classrooms, or by letting your mind run free. (suggested by Michael F.)

Beyond megapixels: The future evolution of smartphone cameras – Smartphone cameras have come a long way — moving from being a convenient way to share a mediocre snapshot, to near pro-quality image capture tools in the right hands. While the old benchmark of resolution seems to have topped out, innovation is accelerating in many areas of mobile camera technology, so we can look forward to continuing upgrades as new phones are released.

Technology Darwinism hits Microsoft’s licensing policies – The time for good old-fashioned evolutionary extinction is at hand concerning Microsoft’s licensing policies. The general consensus is in favor of that extinction.

Look in the mirror: Adults apparently text while driving even more than teens do – A pair of new surveys, funded by AT&T, found that nearly half of commuters admit to texting or sending e-mails while driving, and 43 percent of those commuters have a habit of doing so. Six out of 10 respondents also said they never sent text messages from behind the wheel three years ago, suggesting that the habit is increasing.

Today’s Quote:

Fear not those who argue but those who dodge.”

–     Marie Ebner von Eschenbach

Today’s Free Downloads:

Advanced Mobile Care for Android – Advanced Mobile Care is a veritable Swiss Army knife for Android tuning up. It gives Android users an excellent way to protect their smartphones from Android security and performance problems.

ServersCheck – ServersCheck Monitoring was designed to be a tool running on Windows based systems for monitoring, reporting and alerting on network, servers and other IT systems availability.

EasyGPS – EasyGPS is the fast and easy way to upload and download waypoints, routes, and tracks between your Windows computer and your Garmin, Magellan and hundreds of others.



Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

4 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – March 29, 2013

  1. Hello Bill,
    I put a little video together back in Dec 2012 regarding the creation of a GodMode Folder on the Windows 8 Desktop

    • Hi Bob,

      Very nicely done. Of course, that’s my minimum expectation now. 🙂

      Highly recommend – less than a minute and a half to setup.




  2. Mal

    Hi Bob,
    Didn’t know about this, only just bought Windows 8 a few months ago. Good stuff, I like it.

    • Thanks Mal,
      I’ve been playing with Windows 8 since early beta days and would never go back. I’m one of those that happens to like this new OS.