Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – April 1, 2013

Just how much do people hate Windows 8? – Some of you don’t like Windows 8. And thanks to Internet comments and social media, you have lots of ways to express your loathing. But a closer look at one well-known real-world rating says Windows 8 might be more popular than you think.

Find treasure with Google’s new treasure map – Following up on YouTube’s April Fool’s Day prank, Google has launched one of its own. It’s similar to its prank last year, when it launched an awesome 8-bit version of its Maps service. This year, Google has transformed Google Maps into a treasure map. In order to access the map, all you have to do is click on “Treasure Mode” on the top right of the Google Maps page. Then you can watch as your location is magically transformed into a treasure map.

Google declares end of YouTube in April Fool’s prank – In an elaborate ruse, the world’s most popular video site announces it’s been nothing but a contest site this whole time and says it’s going dark for the next decade.

Police said to use Facebook to stop punk rock house parties – Using the alias of “Joe Sly,” the “Boston Punk Zombie,” the Boston Police Department is allegedly sleuthing out illegal DIY indie-rock shows on social media.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Infographic: What Your Instagram Filters Say About You – It used to be that the quiz in the back of Cosmo held the secrets to your inner self. Now, Instagram has the skinny on your true personality. The mobile app has turned everyone into an edgy photographer, but according to marketing firm Marketo, the filter you choose to art-up those images of sunsets, coffee cups, and last night’s dinner says more about you than the picture itself.

Breathometer Turns Smartphones Into Breathalyzers – This gadget may prevent your fun night out from turning to tragedy.

Russia censors “suicide” websites – The Russian government has started enforcing a new law that gives it the power to block internet content deemed illegal or harmful to children.

8 secrets to super-productive telecommuting – Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer’s recent ban on telecommuting sent shockwaves across the business world. Pundits were quick to take sides, with supporters of the work-at-home option insisting that such arrangements “can make you more productive,” and naysayers denouncing telecommuting as “the worst of everything.” They’re both right. If you telecommute the right way, you’ll save countless hours that you’d otherwise waste in commuting,

Facebook, Twitter Apps Updated for BlackBerry 10 – BlackBerry this week updated its Twitter and Facebook apps to make social media connection easier on all BB10-based smartphones.

Mysterious Blackberry 10 roadmap leaks – A new Blackberry 10 roadmap, leaked by a mysterious Twitter account, shows that Blackberry has a few interesting devices heading our way. In the leaked roadmap, we see that Blackberry is planning on releasing a 10-inch tablet, a phablet, and another touchscreen device with a fully QWERTY keyboard.

Raspberry Pi Model A now available for $25 – The Raspberry Pi has been around for a long time now and has been used in some really cool projects by DIY enthusiasts around the world. When the device launched it sold for $35 for the original Model B. A cheaper version of the device called the Model A is now available to purchase in the US and is priced at $10 less than the original.

Apple Deals: When’s the Best Time to Buy? – Bargain-hunting site Dealnews has run some numbers to determine the best times to get the biggest deals on various Apple products.

Global tech spending forecast to hit $3.8 trillion in 2013 – Worldwide spending on information technology products and services will grow 4.1 percent this year to roughly US$3.8 trillion, according to new forecast figures released by analyst firm Gartner.

“We apologise for the previous apology” – NZ gov dept in email CC: double-blunder – A government department in New Zealand has had to apologise twice after mixing up CC: and BCC: when apologising for mixing up CC: and BCC:. It’s a really easy mistake to make, so take a moment to remind yourself why it’s a bad idea.


Amazon S3 cloud storage users are exposing sensitive company secrets, claims report – A security researcher tested a slew of (probably inappropriately misconfigured) storage buckets and found about one in six were open to the public, exposing content we think companies would probably have preferred remain private.

Security firm suspects hired guns in South Korean cyberattacks – The people behind the destructive cyberattacks against three banks and two broadcasters in South Korea were likely employees or hired guns of a single organization, a security vendor analyzing the attack code says. In addition, Symantec says it found a connection between the recent attack and one launched against U.S. and South Korean government institutions in 2011.

S. Korea, US step up cyber warfare partnership – The two governments will work on a draft deterrence strategy to fend off unexpected attacks, and South Korea will also increase personnel for its Cyber Command unit.

Brace for more mega-DDoS attacks, security experts warn – Distributed Denial of Service attacks like the one that resulted from an altercation between a Dutch company and Spamhaus last week are on the rise, according to a report by security firm Kaspersky Labs.

iMessage DDoS attacks foreshadow a bigger threat – The attacks were executed using a simple AppleScript, where the attackers are able to send out an unlimited, fast-pace amount of messages to the recipient. Depending on the content of the message, the app would either crash, or would shell out notifications at an annoyingly, alarming rate.

Company News:

Chinese media slam Apple’s ‘arrogance’ – In a series of editorial spanning a week, state-owned newspaper People’s Daily criticizes Apple’s discriminatory policies and arrogance toward Chinese consumers. Other local media note the significance of this heavy focus.

Apple fails to appropriate English word – Apple’s bid to trademark the iPad Mini has failed, quite spectacularly. The US Patents and Trademarks Office kindly told Cupertino lawyers that they cannot have a trademark on “iPad Mini” since the law doesn’t really allow anyone to trademark a description of the product, reports Forbes.

Two unlikely PC makers emerge: Google, Microsoft – The tech giants are certainly big enough to make waves in the market for personal computers. CNET’s Brooke Crothers considers the potential impact of their entry into the arena.

Google, Nokia face off in video codec dispute – Nokia says Google is trying to force VP8 down the computing industry’s throat, but Google is backing up its free video technology with patent deals and help with HTC’s legal defense against Nokia.

Microsoft tweaks requirements, greenlights 7- and 8-inch Windows 8 tablets – It’s been rumored for a while that Microsoft would eventually allow its partners to start building 7- and 8-inch tablets running Windows RT or Windows 8. After making a seemingly minor adjustment to the minimum Windows 8 hardware requirements, it appears as though Microsoft is now ready to open the floodgates.

Java in danger of Oracle stranglehold – The CEO of CloudBees has warned that Oracle has a stranglehold over the Java community which it believes will do its bidding.

Panasonic subsidiary at center of U.S. bribery investigation – A subsidiary that makes in-flight entertainment and communications systems is under investigation for allegedly paying bribes to secure contracts, according to documents reviewed by the Wall Street Journal.

Webopedia Daily:

Easter Egg – A secret message or screen buried in an application. Typically, easter eggs are used to display the credits for the development team or to display a humorous message. To see an easter egg, you need to know a special procedure or sequence of keystrokes.

Games and Entertainment:

9 Awesome ‘Game of Thrones’ Parody Videos – There’s the usual low-hanging fruit: music videos, placing Thrones into other contexts, like high school. Heck, there are even parodies of every episode of Season 1, if you’d like to go the completionist route. Check out some of the best in the videos.

Ouya Android Console Launching June 4 – The Ouya game console began shipping Thursday, but those who didn’t snag an early machine can pick one up in stores on June 4.

PC games are growing, but will that continue after the PS4 and Xbox 720 launch? – As we near the end of this console generation, the PC has been picking up the slack. Not only are games looking and playing better on the PC these days, but data is showing that the market is growing as well. With 8% growth in 2012, PC games made an astonishing $20 billion worldwide. It’s heartening to see the uptick, but what will happen when the PS4 and Xbox 720 launch?

Games to keep an eye out for – 2013 is already at a record pace in terms of high-profile game releases. This spring keeps the momentum going with a number of blockbuster releases.

Screenshot jockey: The best BioShock Infinite screenshots – The images featured in this gallery are our picks for a spoiler-free walk through Columbia. The goal was to show off the beauty of the game, as opposed to the explosions, mayhem, and handymen.

Most-anticipated TVs – Spring is the time of year when nearly all of the new TVs hit store shelves. Here are 10 to which we’re most looking forward.

William Shatner fights alien Gorn in new Star Trek video game commercial – I’m a fan of Star Trek The Next Generation, but I’ve never really been a fan of the original Star Trek television series. I have always liked all of the big-screen Star Trek movies with the original crew. The original series was a bit too cheesy for me, but if you’re huge fan of Captain Kirk and crew you may remember an episode from 1967 called Arena.

Home theater tech soon to hit shelves – Spring ushers in a new wave of home theater gadgets, and we’ve rounded up the most interesting products slated for release.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Sight Gags 4 Geeks – Take a look at this gallery of sight gags and have a laugh. While some of the images are just for fun, others represent puzzles designed to test your Geek skills. Can you figure them out? As you work through the gallery, keep score.

How Many Floppy Disks Would It Take To Equal 1 Gigabyte? – In this day and age, we all take it for granted that we can walk around with multi-gigabyte thumb drives in our pockets. However, it really wasn’t that long ago that we carried around floppy disks. Have you ever wondered how many floppy disks it would take to equal 1 Gigabyte? If you have, then you will enjoy this gallery of images that depicts stacks of different capacity floppy disks that add up to 1 Gigabyte.

Microsoft Worldwide Telescope brings the universe to your computer – The Worldwide Telescope is an effort to construct a massive map of the universe. Microsoft Research has assembled astronomical data from scientists all over the world to build a 3D model that users can actually fly through.

On Bullshit Part 1 (video 6:11) – A conversation with Harry G. Frankfurt, author of On Bullshit, published by Princeton University Press.

On Bullshit Part 2 (video 5:21) – A conversation with Harry G. Frankfurt, author of On Bullshit, published by Princeton University Press.

The 15 Coolest Cars of the 2013 New York Auto Show – The slideshow features the coolest cars we saw at the New York Auto Show, shown in alphabetical order. While many of these cars are actual debuts, some of them came out in the past year or so, but the buzz clearly hasn’t worn off yet. We didn’t want to focus exclusively on brand-new introductions, because that would leave out some of the most amazing vehicles on the show floor. A final word of caution: Some of these cars cost more than a house.

Today’s Quote:

In a networked world, trust is the most important currency.”

–     Eric Schmidt

Today’s Free Downloads:

Surf Anonymous Free – Surf Anonymous Free is the most advanced and reliable software for Internet users who want to ensure that their sessions and all online activities are secure and private. For instance, it is used to protect your sensitive data such as bank account information, private photos from being stolen and pried, or visit those websites, blogs and forums that once blocked you.

ZenKEY – ZenKEY allows you to control all aspects of your computer via keystrokes. Using the configuration utility of the ZenKEY Wizard, you can create menus, each containing items which perform “actions”. You can “fire” these actions by clicking on the item or pressing a key-combination.


Filed under downloads, Internet Security Alerts, Tech Net News

4 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – April 1, 2013

  1. delenn13

    Hey Bill,

    Anyone playing BioShock-Infinite? Here’s some great fixes…Every fix you need to make BioShock Infinite run infinitely better | Games |

    BioShock and BioShock 2 is on sale for a great price…somewhere. But it says… This title is available for purchase in United States, Canada, and Mexico. So I am not buying it and I won’t give the web site. How can we be an internet with no borders if we support this type of BS? Yes, I am looking at you Amazon, YouTube, Google Play, and we can’t be amiss and not mention Hollywood and the Record Moguls.

    If you really want the games..just Google them..It should come up. You really don’t want them. Spring is coming(even though it snowed here today). You need to be outside..(that is what I keep telling myself.)

    • Hey Delenn13,

      I’m considering BioShock-Infinite – so, good to have this handy.

      Yep, have to agree – it’s frustrating to have to deal with cross-border issues. Especially, in the entertainment field. It’s that – (government supported) “you can’t play in my backyard” bullshit.

      Talking about outside – just finished some landscaping planning (using the trial version of Realtime Landscaping Photo 2012) – can’t wait to get at it. Come on SUMMER! 🙂



      • delenn13

        Hey Bill,

        Yea, I was gonna get 2 of the bundles. At $9.98 for 4 games, can’t beat it. Then the cross border thing popped still being unemployed…So I just went, “Nay.”

        Nice landscaping program. I actually spend more time on the veggie garden than the flowers.. I just wish Spring would get here..

        • Hey Delenn13,

          Haven’t done any veggies in years – maybe should do a small plot this year. Thanks for planting the seed here. 🙂

          Don’t know what to say that’s comforting on the employment front – it’s just effing horrible out there. I do sympathize.