Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – April 24, 2013

55% of net users use the same password for most, if not all, websites. When will they learn? – A study by Ofcom, the UK communications watchdog, has unearthed some appalling statistics which reveal just how badly the general public treat password security.

Forget online drives, sync directly with BitTorrent Sync – If you do not trust online storage drives for file syncing across your devices or are frustrated with storage limits, there is another player in town. BitTorrent has released a new alpha version of its Sync software, which supports syncing folders across the Internet without going through an intermediary like Dropbox, Cloud Drive, or iCloud.

The 21 worst tech habits—and how to break them – You bite your nails. Your house is a sty. You never signal before changing lanes, and when you finally reach your destination, you’re 30 minutes late. We all have bad habits in real life. Why can’t technology help cure them? While technology should help us break bad habits, all too often it makes things worse. Are you guilty of a bad tech habit? Here are 21 of the worst technology-oriented habits, plus potential fixes for all of them. (And we have a bonus at the end, on mending bad email habits.)

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

Google Fiber’s TV app lets users stream directly to an iPad – Similar to the same app for Android, the new iOS app doubles as a television remote and also lets users browse, select, record, and stream movies and shows.

Cut Down Search Time with These Search Shortcuts – Searching the web for information is a skill. Yes, you can enter a term into a search engine and find information, but that’s the blunt force method. By using a few simple tricks, the scalpel method, you can quickly and easily whittle down your results to get exactly the information you’re looking for.

Five things worth noting about Google Keep – Google Keep is Google’s new competitor to EverNote and Microsoft OneNote. Here are five interesting details about it.

Mozilla Firefox OS Developer Phones Sold Out – Developers were eager to get their hands on the new Firefox OS developer phones today. Spanish provider GeeksPhone sold out within hours of making them available. The online shop is currently shut down for maintenance, but according to TechCrunch, the dual devices were listed as “Out of stock” a few hours after going on sale.

Swype keyboard app exits beta, enters Google Play – The app monitors users’ activity to better understand their writing style and help predict when common words or phrases are at hand, saving input time.

The BlackBerry Q10 blends the best of old and new – The BlackBerry Q10 has arrived, bringing with it a modern OS, an excellent keyboard, and long battery life.

Security:

Australian police arrest alleged leader of LulzSec hacking group – Australian Federal Police arrest man who reportedly called himself the leader of the hacking group, which has been the target of recent prosecution after a brief hacking run in 2011.

AP Twitter Feed Hacked With Bogus Report of White House Attack – The hack, of course, comes just over a week after the Boston Marathon bombings, and one day after Canadian officials said they had thwarted a major attack on transportation systems there. The AP tweet got hundreds of re-tweets shortly after it was posted, though many immediately suggested that the feed had been hacked.

The Secunia Country Reports – the state of private PC security, country by country – The Secunia Country Reports provides insight into software security – more specifically, how much vulnerable software is present on private PCs in a number of different countries.

Boston Marathon Bombing Links May Hide Java-Based Exploits – My social media accounts and email inbox are full of links to stories about the horrific incident in Boston earlier this week. I am reading about the victims, the bystanders and first responders that rushed to help, and looking for updates on the investigation. It turns out I should be careful about what links I click on, as cyber-criminals have already started exploiting the tragedy for their own nefarious purposes, security experts told SecurityWatch.

Phone scammers call the wrong guy, get mad and trash PC – Have you ever received a call from someone with a heavy Indian accent from Microsoft saying your computer had errors or viruses? The purpose of these calls is to get an easy $299 (or whatever amount they choose) by scaring you into thinking there’s something really wrong with your computer and that they can fix it for you. These telephony scams have been going on for many years and scammers keep robbing innocent people sadly because their success ratio is still worth their time and effort.

Exploit for recently patched Java flaw added to CrimeBoss exploit kit – If you are still using Java, you insist on updating in manually and you haven’t gotten around to installing the latest Critical Patch Update released a week ago, you are advised to do it now, as an exploit for one of the vulnerabilities it patched has been incorporated into a popular exploit kit and is being actively used in the wild.

Remote users expose companies to cybercrime – Results of new remote access security research show half of companies with a remote workforce had their websites compromised in 2012, over a third had passwords hacked, and twice as many companies with remote users were victims of SQL injection attacks. (And, in other News – water is wet, …… )

Company News:

Telepathy One aims to compete with Google Glass with added intimacy – A smaller projector and a simple set of functions are part of a Japanese headset that hopes to be a social communication tool.

Microsoft signs patent deal with Chinese phone maker ZTE – The software giant says it now has patent deals with companies that make 80 percent of Andriod phones sold in the United States and a majority of those sold worldwide.

Cook promises ‘amazing’ Apple products in the fall – Apple CEO Tim Cook said Tuesday that the company will announce some new products this fall but wouldn’t offer any specifics.

Facebook hires Web-based mobile-game developer team – The social network nabs the crew behind Spaceport, a company that focuses on cross-platform development.

Webopedia Daily:

Assortment intelligence – In electronic commerce (ecommerce) terminology, assortment intelligence refers to a set of tools and software used to help online retailers track a competitor’s inventory and product supply. The software, in real-time, uses artificial intelligence, data-mining, and image-recognition algorithms allowing retailers to view, compare and analyze the differences between inventory. Assortment intelligence reporting tools can then help a retailer determine what products competitors have — and do well on — and decide if they should add these products to an existing catalog.

Games and Entertainment:

Smart pajamas read your kids a bedtime story – Get ready to scan your children. The timeless onesie’s getting a digital upgrade with a set of jammies that link to stories and lullabies on a smart device.

What the ‘console-ification’ of PCs means for gamers – Traditionally, gamers have voluntary segregated themselves into two camps: console gamers and PC gamers. Hostility between the two runs irrationally deep, and rare is the gamer who’s willing to proclaim allegiance to both sides. Either you’re part of the Alliance, or you’re part of the Horde. But the times, they are a-changin’.

Temple Run – Passing time playing games with your smartphone or tablet requires applications that are quick to learn and fun. Temple Run’s excellent graphics and easy-yet-satisfying gameplay make it a good option for casual gamers. Temple Run comes as a free application, but payment is required for additional power-ups. Installation through the Google Play store completed quickly, and there were no log-ins required to play the game

Samsung Galaxy S4 has the fastest gaming graphics of any phone – With the latest version of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 600 processor, the Galaxy S4 catapults itself to the top of the smartphone gaming heap.

Off Topic (Sort of):

3D-printed guns are inevitable – At the Inside 3D Printing Conference and Expo, Defense Distributed’s Cody Wilson argued that politicians can’t stop innovation.

Anti-ogle goggles for the modest set – An ultra-Orthodox organization has developed a range of products to act as a first line of defense against the threat of seeing immodest women. Two semi-transparent stickers applied to the lenses of the user’s spectacles blur vision of anything beyond the range of a few meters and so diffuse immodestly dressed women to a harmless blot.

Groovy mantis shrimp – Just a rather brilliant info-cartoon. (suggested by Michael F.)

Video 3:26: This algorithm simulates evolution – A research team led by Cornell University’s Creative Machines Lab has created a computer algorithm that simulates virtual creatures evolving their squishy, muscle-like features in order to teach themselves to walk.

Judge gives taxi-hailing apps in NYC the go-ahead – After a lawsuit put a yearlong e-hail pilot program on hold, taxi-hailing app startups like Uber, GetTaxi, and Hailo are now given a green light.

Hey, Word Geeks! Now There’s a Website for You – Quick, use autochthonous in a sentence. And before you ask, no, it’s not what a chthonous uses to drive to work. How about lorgnette or phrontistery? OK, it’s fair to say that none of these come up much in conversation, but hey, they’re there for a reason and it would be nice if we all took these and other friendless words out for a little fresh air every now and then. Vocabulary.com could actually make speaking well cool again.

Today’s Quote:

It’s pretty clear now that what looked like it might have been some kind of counterculture is, in reality, just the plain old chaos of undifferentiated weirdness.”

–      Jerry Garcia

Today’s Free Downloads:

Toolwiz Time Freeze – Toolwiz Time Freeze is a free instant system protection tool to keep your system safe and always like new. It protects your system from any unwanted changes and malicious activity in low disk level. With a simple click, it puts your actual system under virtual protection on the fly and creates a virtual environment as a copy of the real system, on which you can evaluate applications, watch movies, and perform online activities. It provides higher-level security to computer protection, and greatly improves the efficiency of virtual system

Malware Scene Investigator 1.25 – Malware Scene Investigator is a free tool to scan your system for unknown malware. It´s a heuristic scanner that locates undetected malware by searching for symptoms and modifications they cause. The scanner is extremely fast and provides a log file after the scanning process is completed. The program is very easy to use, does not require installation, and is completely free. Requires: Microsoft .NET Framework 4.0.

PrivaZer – PrivaZer allows you to: See exactly what can still be recovered of your past activities on your PC at home or at work. Clean in-depth unwanted traces of what you’ve done watched, downloaded, deleted, etc. and prevent recovery. Master your security & freedom. Free up disk space. Keep your PC fit and secure.

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