Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – January 22, 2014

The Inevitable ‘Sex With Glass’ App Is Here;  Best Tax Software; How to Delete Accounts From Any Website;  How is LTE-Advanced different from regular LTE?  Never forget ANYTHING ever again with these 11 phone tricks;  Watch the Super Bowl live online;  How to send self-destructing messages on iOS; Bodhi Linux could easily become a desktop distribution contender;  10 things you should know about Google Now;  Bitcoin: Marc Andreessen Explains It All for You;  Cooking with Cannabis: How to Make Weed Butter.

Hollywood will call US HOMELAND SECURITY on suspected pirates – as this Google Glass guy found out in a cinema – An Ohio man is crying foul after he was detained and interrogated by the feds – because he wore a Google Glass headset in a movie theater. The bloke, who wishes to remain anonymous, said he was pulled from a screening of Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit at the AMC Easton Town Center in Columbus by men who he claims identified themselves as US government agents. After being told to step outside the theater, he was accused of using the Google Glass headset to record and pirate the film. It’s understood an MPAA representative was at the AMC, spotted the Google Glass wearer, and tipped off the feds.

The Inevitable ‘Sex With Glass’ App Is Here – Want to spice up your sex life? There’s a Google Glass app for that. The salaciously titled Sex with Google Glass does just what its name suggests: Strap the spectacles onto your head, turn on the application, and, well, do your thing. All the while, Glass will record and stream the action.

Snapchat Makes You “Find The Ghosts” To Keep Hackers From Stealing Your Phone Number – Snapchat now verifies new users aren’t robots by making them choose its ghost mascot in images. It’s an attempt to keep out hackers who could steal phone numbers by exploiting a leaked database of details on 4.6 million accounts. A 16-year-old hacker proved he could do just that by finding the number of Snapchat CTO Bobby Murphy, but now he says Snapchat has patched the holes he harnessed.

How to send self-destructing messages on iOS – Confide is a free, simple service that makes it possible to send self-destructing messages to friends and colleagues using an iPhone app. By using your e-mail or Facebook contacts, you can send what amounts to an e-mail through the service. It’s then encrypted and the recipient will receive an alert of the pending message. For those who don’t have an account, the sign up process only requires a few details (e-mail address and password), and downloading the Confide iOS app. Once you have an account and the app is installed, you’re ready to go.

Never forget ANYTHING ever again with these 11 phone tricks – Evernote? Reminders? Calendar? Those are fine, but there are other ways to use your phone to remember stuff.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

How to Delete Accounts From Any Website – Deleting accounts you’ve created on the Internet, from social media to software services, isn’t always easy. Here are the details on leaving several big-name services behind.

Bodhi Linux could easily become a desktop distribution contender – Find out why and how Jack Wallen thinks Bodhi Linux could become one of the most popular desktop distributions on the market.

Watch the Super Bowl live online – The big game is set to take place on February 2 at MetLife Stadium. Here’s how you can watch it live on any device.

EvolveSMS Brings Awesome Design and Plenty of Features to Android – Google added SMS integration to Hangouts a few months ago, and despite some foibles, it’s a fine option for most people. There aren’t really a ton of great Android SMS clients out there anyway, but the new EvolveSMS is something to seriously consider. This new app from Klinker Apps (developer of Talon) uses a more modern aesthetic and a ton of features to make text messages a little more exciting.

10 things you should know about Google Now – If you’re looking for ways to make your days more productive and efficient, Google Now might be able to lend a hand.

How to create and manage multiple user profiles in Chrome – If you share a PC at home, other family members can start searching the web as you by simply opening Chrome. Luckily, Chrome’s multiple profile support can help, providing an easy-peasy way for multiple people to use the same browser without worrying about imposters or having to constantly sign in and out of Google profiles.

Phablets Are Officially A Thing, With 20M Shipped In 2013 – God help us. Phablets are officially a thing. According to Juniper Research, phablets are expected to hit 120 million units shipped by 2018, up from the estimated 20 million phablets shipped last year (2013). Samsung validated the trend with the super-sized Galaxy Note series, which has gone on to be surprisingly successful for the Korean electronics giant.

Location-based services: Controversy at every level – Like it or not, commerce increasingly involves keeping tabs on the customer’s location.

Think Software Keyboards Don’t Work On Smartwatches? Check Out Minuum’s New Video – As smartwatches become a device category that most major hardware makers are turning their attention to, there’s a question of how much smartphone utility we’ll be able to translate to the wrist. One big convenience hurdle is making it possible to reply to texts and emails quickly from the wrist, and that’s where Minuum‘s go-anywhere software keyboard comes in.

Best Tax Software – With new iPad, Android, and iPhone tax-preparation options added to the usual online offerings, you’ve got less excuse than ever for not getting your taxes in early!

Backblaze lists most reliable hard drives based on its massive cloud study – Last November, the company released the first batch of data showing that nearly one our of four (22%) of more than 25,000 consumer-grade hard drives died in their first four years of use. Today, the Backblaze released what is arguably the most important information yet: which vendor’s hard drive products last the longest. The result are based on a study that lasted three years.

FAQ: How is LTE-Advanced different from regular LTE? – Just as many consumers are getting their first taste of speedy 4G LTE connections, carriers around the globe have begun pouring resources into building LTE-Advanced networks, which promise even faster and more reliable mobile access. If you’re finding yourself confused by the alphabet soup of acronyms and technobabble, take heart: You are not alone. Let us help you with your many, many questions.

Security:

Hacker accesses 70,000 Healthcare.gov records, says website is 100% insecure – The Healthcare.gov website has had its fair share of troubles since launch, and one that has been persistent among them is claims of security vulnerabilities. TrustedSec’s CEO David Kennedy has been vocal about these issues, though little has been done to address them. Perhaps to make a bigger point, he took advantage of the vulnerability in recent times and managed to access 70,000 records over the course of four minutes, saying, “Seventy-thousand was just one of the numbers that I was able to go up to, and I stopped after that.”

Israeli Android researchers demo VPN vulnerability: Malicious app can redirect traffic invisibly – The Ben Gurion University security researchers who tangled with Samsung over its KitKat security implementation have posted a follow-up, in which they demonstrate how a malicious app could bypass some VPN protections in Android.

Syrian Electronic Army hacks Microsoft’s Office Blogs site mere hours after redesign – The attack happened as Microsoft unveiled a new design for the site Monday. The hacker group posted a screenshot on Twitter of what it claims was the site’s old administration panel when it was running on software from Telligent, a developer of online enterprise collaboration and community platforms, and a screenshot of the site’s new supposed admin panel, suggesting that it’s now running on WordPress.

16 million email addresses and passwords in Germany exposed by malware attack – Hot on the heels of the massive credit card cyber attacks that affected U.S. retailers such as Target, Neiman Marcus and others in December, the German government has announced it found criminals used malware to get the email addresses and passwords of as many as 16 million of its citizens.

Scientists detect “spoiled onions” trying to sabotage Tor privacy network – That means operators of these servers can see traffic as it was sent by the end user. Any data the end user sent unencrypted, as well as the destinations of servers receiving or responding to data passed between an end user and server, can be monitored—and potentially modified—by malicious volunteers. Privacy advocates have long acknowledged the possibility that the National Security Agency and spy agencies across the world operate such rogue exit nodes.

Top executives resign over massive data leak – Top executives of KB Financial Group, NongHyup Card, and Lotte Card — all three companies involved in the recent financial data breach — said they would step down to take responsibility for the leak. The move came after the nation’s chief financial regulator called on the CEOs to shoulder responsibility for the leak. (suggested by Aseem S.)

Most CEOs clueless about cyberattacks – and their response to incidents proves it – Despite an onslaught of devastating high-profile cyberattacks, four in five CEOs aren’t regularly informed about potential threats to their organizations and only 14 percent of top executives play an active role in the incident response process.

Company News:

LogMeIn Kills Its Eponymous Free Service As New Users Decline; Existing Users Irate – Another day, another free service goes to the dogs — or logs as the case may be. LogMeIn, a provider of remote connectivity services, 10 years ago made a name for itself by offering easy-to-use, free services to access other computers and files remotely — with the idea being the company could upsell them to paid services. Today, however, the company took a turn away from its legacy product, announcing that it is discontinuing LogMeIn Free. New users can no longer sign up, and existing users are being asked to sign up for a paid tier, which appears to begin at $49/year for two computers.

Verizon to purchase Intel’s Media division – Intel’s OnCue TV service may finally see the light of day. The chipmaker has announced that Verizon will acquire its Media division, taking with it the division’s intellectual property, products, and employees. In a press release, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam laid out plans to incorporate the product into its FiOS TV services while also offering an over-the-top experience that might allow Verizon to expand its reach—without incurring the expense of expanding its fiber optic network.

BlackBerry Soars 10% On Pentagon Order, Shares Now Up 34% In 2014 – BlackBerry has an almost uncanny ability to not die when it’s been written off again and again. Today, the Pentagon has announced that it will install 80,000 BlackBerry handsets on its network by the end of January. According to Fox News, the new phones are part of the Pentagon’s “new mobile program for unclassified work.” BlackBerry’s shares soared 10% in midday trading on the news.

Candy Crush developer wins trademark for “Candy” – One of the most popular mobile games in the world is Candy Crush Saga from King.com Limited. The company field for a trademark about a year ago for the very generic word “Candy.” That trademark has now been granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Instagram Is The Fastest-Growing Social Site Globally, Mobile Devices Rule Over PCs For Access – Pinterest may have passed Twitter in popularity in the U.S. according to new figures out last month from Pew, but globally the social network to watch may be Facebook-owned Instagram. According to research published today by the Global Web Index, Instagram is growing the fastest of all social media sites worldwide, increasing its active user base by 23% in the last six months.

Toshiba has bought OCZ Storage – OCZ will continue to operate independently and be based in San Jose, California. Toshiba is a major manufacturer of flash-memory chips, so it should be able to supply OCZ’s SSD manufacturing operations with enough silicon. The acquisition brings Toshiba OCZ’s enterprise and client SSD customers, both markets it intends to keep serving, the company said in a statement.

Games and Entertainment:

Call of Duty: Ghosts Review – With a Call of Duty game coming out at least once a year for what seems like forever, it’s not easy always seeing the newest title for what it’s worth, especially when it comes to multiplayer. With Call of Duty: Ghosts, you’ve got the first title to be released to the next-generation consoles PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Because of this, we’re able to take on a new era regardless of the changes Infinity Ward has made – but is it enough?

Dead Rising 3′s 13GB patch includes DLC content even if you don’t want it – The patch isn’t 13GB due to fixes the game requires, though. Capcom has instead decided to bundle in content for episodes 3 and 4 of forthcoming DLC. If you intend on purchasing that DLC then this probably sounds fine to you, but for those that don’t want it, why are they being forced to download it?

Resident Evil 4 Ultimate HD Edition headed to PC with 60FPS of terror – There’s a bit of bonus content here, but for the most part, users will be rolling out with the same environment as before, this time prepared for the newest in new graphics processing power. This title also has a few bits and pieces to add on for those that wish to pre-order it in the weeks before it hits digital shelves.

Your brain on video games: lucid dreaming, POV changes, resistance to nightmares – Regular gamers have likely, at one point or another, noticed a pronounced video game-esque feel in a dream here or there, maybe finding themselves caught up in the dream world of the last game they binge played or, conversely, transforming an ordinary dream into something akin to a preferred type of video game. If you’re one of those gamers, you’re not alone.

Assassin’s Creed IV Companion App Sails into Google Play and the App Store – We’re still a long way from being able to reliably run a console or PC-level game on a mobile device, but the new Assassin’s Creed IV Companion app at least adds something to the traditional gaming experience. This app is available on iOS and Android. It acts as a second screen while you’re playing the full game, but also offers some interesting gameplay options.

Something to think about:

“By any of the major criteria of harm – mortality, morbidity, toxicity, addictiveness and relationship with crime – cannabis is less harmful than alcohol or tobacco.” Report of the British Police Foundation March 2000

“Estimates suggest that from 20 to 50 million Americans routinely, albeit illegally, smoke marijuana without the benefit of direct medical supervision. Yet, despite this long history of use and the extraordinarily high numbers of social smokers, there are simply no credible reports to suggest that consuming marijuana has caused a single death. By contrast, aspirin, a commonly used, over-the-counter medicine, causes hundreds of deaths each year.” – DEA Administrative Law Judge Francis L. Young

“I now have absolute proof that smoking even one marijuana cigarette is equal in brain damage to being on Bikini Island during an H-bomb blast.” – Ronald Reagan

“Mistrust those in whom the urge to punish is strong.” – Friedrich Nietzsche, German philosopher (1844-1900)

Off Topic (Sort of):

Google Glass Explorer developing apps for firefighters – Google Glass Explorers come in all varieties and Glassware of many sorts is in development, all of it aiming to augment our existence in a new and functional way. One of the more altruistic developments-in-progress are the apps being created by developer and firefighter Patrick Jackson, who sees a future in the technology for his fellow firefighters.

Australia has floated a plan to regulate social media at a federal level – The idea’s not new: the Liberal/National coalition took it to the nation’s 2013 election as a policy that, in part, it used to show that someone was thinking of the children, especially in the context of cyber-bullying and youth suicides felt to have been brought about by online interaction. The coalition parties have since won government and have now released a discussion paper, Discussion Paper – Enhancing Online Safety for Children (PDF) outlining its proposed regime. (Poor Australia – governed by fringe element lunatics.)

Three words you won’t see on Facebook, Google, Twitter ads: ‘Wanna get high?’ – Despite the legalization of recreational marijuana use in Colorado and Washington, it turns out that you still can’t advertise with the online super giants.

Cooking with Cannabis: How to Make Weed Butter – Getting your daily dose of THC shouldn’t require coughing and hacking through bong hits or dropping hundreds of dollars on vaporizers. Here’s how to give your cooking a dash of psychedelic deliciousness. (Suggested by Michel F. On a side note, I consume medicinal Marijuana edibles every day. In fact, I have been a Marijuana consumer for over 40 years. Much to the disappointment of Big Pharma, I expect.)

Emoticons turn terrifying for child safety campaign – The usually endearing emoticon gets super creepy for an eye-catching French campaign aimed at making parents aware of who their kids may be talking to online.

Bitcoin to be accepted for food and lodging in two Las Vegas hotels – Bitcoin has been making waves across the world, and now the cryptocurrency craze has reached the good city of Las Vegas. Starting Wednesday, two hotels in Las Vegas, including the The Golden Gate, the city’s oldest casino, will start accepting Bitcoin payments but only for hotel expenses.

Bitcoin: Marc Andreessen Explains It All for You – A web visionary makes the case for virtual currency having world-changing implications.

World’s 85 richest people own nearly half of global wealth: Oxfam – “Wealthy elites have co-opted political power to rig the rules of the economic game, undermining democracy and creating a world where the 85 richest people own the wealth of half of the world’s population,” Oxfam claimed. It also said that since the late 1970s, tax rates for the richest have fallen in 29 of the 30 countries for which data are available, meaning that in many places the rich not only get more money but also pay less tax on it.

Bill Gates releases annual letter, says there won’t be ‘poor’ countries by 2035 – Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates has issued his 2014 annual letter from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, predicting that by 2035 there will be almost no “poor” countries in the world.

Phablets Are Officially A Thing, With 20M Shipped In 2013 – God help us. Phablets are officially a thing. According to Juniper Research, phablets are expected to hit 120 million units shipped by 2018, up from the estimated 20 million phablets shipped last year (2013). Samsung validated the trend with the super-sized Galaxy Note series, which has gone on to be surprisingly successful for the Korean electronics giant.

Grind this: Onewheel electric skateboard balances itself – The Onewheel electric skateboard rolls ahead with the idea that you don’t need four wheels or a good sense of balance to ride.

Today’s Free Downloads:

Wondershare Video Converter Pro Giveaway – Wondershare Video Converter Pro is a powerful video converter for Win (Windows 8 supported) to help you convert videos and extract audio. What’s more, you can easily download and convert wonderful web videos like YouTube etc to iPhone (the latest iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c available), iPad (iPad Air, iPad mini 2 included), iPod and more for enjoyment on the go. (Free offer expires 2/25 – registration required.)

Advanced Uninstaller Pro – The program is especially designed to be very clear, fast, pleasant and intuitive. Easy to read information and help is readily available throughout the program, guiding you every step of the way. Advanced Uninstaller PRO helps your PC run at full speed by taking good care of the Windows registry and services. It also helps you free disk space by detecting and removing duplicate files and helping you turn on the Windows file compression if needed. (This is a CNET download so the usual warnings re: crapware, applies. Nevertheless, I highly recommend this app.)

In Pursuit of Freedom – The Pushback Continues:

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden to hold Q&A Thursday – Edward Snowden is expected to offer his opinion of President Obama’s NSA reforms during a Webcast question-and-answer session on Thursday. It will be Snowden’s first live chat since he began releasing classified internal documents last June that revealed the agency’s surveillance programs, according to FreeSnowden.is, the support site hosting the hour-long Q&A. Snowden, who is currently living in exile in Russia, was charged with espionage after reportedly stealing 1.7 million classified documents from US government computers.

Microsoft legal chief seeks global rules on spying, data – As the World Economic Forum kicks off, Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith calls for an international convention to create surveillance and data-access rules across borders to protect privacy and businesses.

6 Comments

Filed under Free Security Programs, Internet Security Alerts, Latest Tech News

6 responses to “Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – January 22, 2014

  1. Michael Fisher

    Try the butter Bill. Made it y/day & added garlic + pepper + chilli to the recipe. Didn’t get the colour in the pic though! V. good slathered on baguette with ham & Hellmans mayo

  2. Mal

    Hey Bill,

    Re:Australia has floated a plan to regulate social media at a federal level

    I laughed my head off reading some of the comments following this article. What is it about western Governments. Always poking their noses into stuff they know nothing about. Regulation is not the answer.

    This new Government of ours promised “no unexpected surprises”. So far, the have proven themselves to be a bunch of all knowing, right wing retards. No wonder most of us Aussies don’t respect politicians.

    Rant over and cheers.

    Mal

    • Hey Mal,

      It seems so obvious “Regulation is not the answer”, that it raises suspicion (at least in those who can THINK), as to the hidden motivation behind the incessant push, by governments worldwide, to shackle the Internet.

      The government here in Canada is a total disgrace. Voted into power by 32% of the electorate (a curse on the 3 party system!!), it continues to attempt to change this country into a mirror image of it’s own ideology – right wing, bible-thumping, serve the 1%, lying (caught MANY times), SCANDAL ridden assholes. We are the only country in the world in which the current Parliament, has been found to be in “Contempt of Parliament.” Truly a mind-bender. And yet, the majority of Canadians don’t seem to care.

      This obvious disconnect from the political system (our political masters), seems to be mirrored in virtually all western democracies. Hold on for the storm – it’s coming (the Ukraine comes to mind).

      Best,

      Bill

  3. Keith

    Hi Bill,
    This is Keith from Kentucky. I didn’t see a link to email you, but I found a slick, free program that I thought you and other readers might like that scans the hard drive and finds which files & folders are taking up the most space on the HD. It has a nice graphic and is VERY FAST and free. Its called Wiztree by Antibodies software. Have a great one sir!!

    http://antibody-software.com/web/software/software/wiztree-finds-the-files-and-folders-using-the-most-disk-space-on-your-hard-drive/

    http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/wiztree.html