10 Apps Every Lazy Person Needs; The 100 Best Android Apps of 2015; Stop Google from tracking you on Google Maps; Couch computing: How to browse your PC’s videos from your tablet; How to prepare your PC for Windows 10; Overscan: You’re not seeing the whole picture on your TV; How to add virtual desktops to your PC; The scariest thing about the Chrysler hack is how hard it was to patch; Get to know the security features in Edge; Hands-on with the new Doom: The detail of Doom 3, the speed of Doom 2; Fallout Shelter is coming to Android on August 13th; French surveillance law is constitutional; IBM’s Watson will analyze your personality; Pakistan bans BlackBerry Enterprise Server; System Explorer (free).
10 Apps Every Lazy Person Needs – In this rundown, we’ll lay out the essential apps for people who want to live large and lazy in the modern world. There are programs to park your car, put together your furniture and even blow out the candles on your birthday cake. Pick up your phone and let’s slack off to the future.
The 100 Best Android Apps of 2015 – Of course, with nearly 1.5 million apps bouncing around inside Google Play, finding a good app to refresh your phone or fill out a brand new Android can be daunting. That’s why we’ve put together this list of the best Android apps. Here, you’ll find a little bit of everything: finance, storage, photo editing, and digital security. But you won’t find any games in this hallowed hall of Android perfection. That’s not because we don’t like mobile games. Quite the contrary. We love mobile games so much we went and made a separate list for the best Android games. You’re welcome.
Stop Google from tracking you on Google Maps – Learn how to disable Location History for your Google account and also how to delete some or all of your whereabouts from Your Timeline.
Microsoft releases tool to hide or block unwanted Windows 10 updates – Windows 10 testers who’ve complained about mandatory updates in Microsoft’s new operating system might have a solution at hand. The tool, available as an optional download, lets you hide or block any update for Windows or a hardware driver.
How to prepare your PC for Windows 10 – Windows 10 is set to arrive on July 29. Before you jump right in and install Windows 10, you should take a few moments and prepare your PC to ensure the upgrade process goes off without a hitch. This article will guide you through the steps of checking for updates, backing up your personal information and creating an all important system image.
Couch computing: How to browse your PC’s videos from your tablet – Embrace the power of Windows built-in folder sharing and you too can enjoy saved media on your Android tablet from nearly any room in the house.
Instagram tries a faster, sleeker Android photo editor – Not happy with having to wade through filters and other editing tools just to post your Instagram shots? You might have a much simpler solution in the near future. Droid-Life has noticed that Instagram is trying out a new photo editor on Android that squeezes things into a single, simpler page that lets you add comments, tag people and apply filters. You only have to jump to another screen if you’re eager to make in-depth tweaks.
How to add virtual desktops to your PC without upgrading to Windows 10 – Not making the switch to Windows 10, but love the idea of multiple desktops? Here’s how to add that to any PC running Windows XP or higher.
Twitter Takes Down Joke Stealers’ Tweets – Don’t steal someone’s joke and repost it as your own on Twitter; if that person complains, there goes your tweet.
Ubuntu Phone review: years in the making, but still not consumer-ready – The smartphone arena is dominated by two operating systems. Gartner’s latest figures show that during the first three months of 2015, iOS and Android devices accounted for almost 97 percent of global smartphone sales. With established alternatives from Microsoft and BlackBerry already fighting for the leftovers, there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of opportunity for new players. Canonical, maker of the popular Linux distro Ubuntu, is taking on the challenge regardless. With a version of Ubuntu built specifically for mobile, it’s hoping to shake up the current duopoly with a fresh approach to content consumption. That’s the plan, anyway, but after spending some time getting to know the OS, it’s clear Canonical has a lot of work to do if Ubuntu Phone is ever going to be a viable option for even casual smartphone users.
Get to know the security features in Edge – How Microsoft’s new browser will keep you safe.
The scariest thing about the Chrysler hack is how hard it was to patch – The hack looked bad — Wired’s Andy Greenberg was literally forced into a ditch by hackers — but the patching process is even more important, and Chrysler’s failure there should be much more troubling. Bugs are an inevitable part of software development, so the important question is how quickly you respond when a bug is inevitably found, giving attackers as small a window as possible to exploit the newly discovered weakness. As long as Chrysler has to update car software by hand, that window is wide open — and that should be scarier than any highway demo.
Security flaws discovered in popular Smart Home Hubs – In order to understand the risks associated with Smart Home Hubs, Tripwire carried out a security analysis on three top-selling devices: Mios Vera, Wink Hub, and the SmartThings Hub. Researchers found security vulnerabilities in each. These flaws could allow attackers to identify when people are out of their home, change alarm settings, open locks without authorization, access local area networks, or use them for DDoS purposes.
Best Buy Will Begin Selling The Apple Watch From August 7 – Apple is preparing to expand the sales effort behind the Apple Watch after it was announced that Best Buy will begin selling it in its U.S. stores from August 7, making it the first independent retailer to stock the wearable device.
Facebook prevails in shareholder lawsuit over IPO – An appeals court has ruled that shareholders cannot sue Facebook or CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a case that accused the company of withholding key financial information from the public until after its IPO. The shareholders alleged that Facebook had failed to share its projections for mobile ad sales prior to the offering, disclosing them only to analysts who then relayed the information to certain investors.
Rumor: Square Files for Confidential IPO – Rumors are swirling that mobile payment company Square, founded by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey (also the company’s interim CEO at the moment), has officially filed for an initial public offering. However, it has allegedly done so confidentially, and the company doesn’t appear to be commenting on the rumors at this point. Word of the confidential filing comes from Bloomberg, which was tipped off by unnamed sources regarding Square’s alleged IPO. If true, the move does seem to align with recent rumors that Square was planning to file for an IPO rather soon.
Mobile Apple Pay rival set to hit stores next month – A new mobile-payments system called CurrentC, backed by Walmart, Target and many other major retailers, will get a limited trial in stores starting next month, Bloomberg Business reported, citing several people familiar with the situation. The system has been slated to launch nationwide this year.
Google’s Calico partners with Ancestry.com to beat the specter of aging – On Tuesday, Calico, the medical research company Google incubated in 2013, announced it had cut a deal for access to genetic information from Ancestry.com, the largest family tree website.
Games and Entertainment:
Hands-on with the new Doom: The detail of Doom 3, the speed of Doom 2 – With over a decade since the last major Doom release in 2004, this franchise reboot has to clear a pretty high bar of fan expectations. Based on some hands-on time with the game at QuakeCon this week, fans probably won’t be disappointed—and neither will newcomers. The demo shows off a game that carries an understanding of what it means to blend the memories of yesteryear with modern sensibilities.
Valve’s ‘Half-Life’ spotted running on an Android Wear smartwatch – If you ever wanted to play Half-Life on your Android wearable, you’re in luck! YouTuber David Bennett takes us through the process and shows us how Half-Life on an Android Wear device plays.
Fallout Shelter is coming to Android on August 13th – At E3, Bethesda both announced and launched Fallout Shelter, a mobile game where players could manage their own underground vaults in the aftermath of a nuclear disaster. It had all of the dark, quirky humor the series was known for, but unfortunately it was only available on iOS — but that will change very soon. Bethesda announced today that an Android version is in the works, and will be launching on August 13th. It seems 2015 is shaping up to be a big year for the post-apocalyptic RPG series; in addition to Shelter, there’s also a new anthology collection launching in September, as well as the big release of Fallout 4 on November 10th.
Overscan: You’re not seeing the whole picture on your TV – Your TV is probably trimming the edges of your TV shows and movies. Worse, this trimming means it has to zoom in on the image, potentially decreasing picture quality. It’s an easy thing to fix, and there are basically no downsides to making sure it’s set correctly. Here’s what you need to know.
In this slightly exaggerated image, you can see the full image on the left, and the overscanned image on the right. Geoffrey Morrison/CNET
China officially ends ban on video game consoles – China is finally scrapping its 15-year ban on video game consoles. According to a statement from the country’s Ministry of Culture, companies like Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft — among others — will now be allowed to manufacture and sell video game consoles anywhere in the country. The Wall Street Journal first reported the news earlier today.
Off Topic (Sort of):
IBM’s Watson will analyze your personality – IBM’s supercomputer Watson is trying its hand at discerning personalities, and it bases its guesses on text samples. A demonstration of the technology allows anyone to copy in their own snippet of text and get an assessment based on it — whether your own will prove accurate is another matter. This is the latest example of computers learning to predict and analyze; we saw a different example yesterday via a neural network that is learning to write.
Give this a try – It’s a bit of fun.
Here’s Watson’s take on who I am. Very close but blew it on “You are relatively unconcerned with helping others.”
You are inner-directed, analytical and strict.
You are authority-challenging: you prefer to challenge authority and traditional values to help bring about positive changes. You are independent: you have a strong desire to have time to yourself. And you are calm-seeking: you prefer activities that are quiet, calm, and safe.
Experiences that give a sense of efficiency hold some appeal to you.
You consider achieving success to guide a large part of what you do: you seek out opportunities to improve yourself and demonstrate that you are a capable person. You are relatively unconcerned with helping others: you think people can handle their own business without interference.
Google compares security experts to the rest of us – It shouldn’t surprise anyone that security experts and average computer users take dramatically different approaches to staying safe online. A trio of Googlers decided to take a closer look and see just how different they really are. They titled their paper “no one can hack my mind.” They noted a few big misses on the non-expert side that you may have noticed, too. Keeping software up to date — which was the #1 priority for experts — didn’t even make the top five. Maybe it’s because non-experts assume that updates are being taken care of automatically. Maybe they figure their anti-virus software is keeping them safe regardless of whether or not their software is up-to-date. Some of Google’s participants said they were confused why updates were even necessary.
Hillary Clinton sent classified information via personal email – A government investigation has concluded that Hillary Clinton sent classified information through a personal email account while she served as Secretary of State, The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday. The internal review of Clinton’s use of a personal account by the Inspector General for the intelligence community examined just 40 emails of the thousands sent through the account and found four of them contained information that should have been classified as “secret,” the newspaper said. None of the emails were marked as such. At the time they were sent, that was the second highest level of classification in the U.S. government.
Technology Is Magic, Just Ask The Washington Post – Most people don’t understand how technology works. When they flip a light switch, or tap their phone, what happens next is essentially magic to them. Oh, they may be able to handwave a bit about electrons and volts and microprocessors and radio waves and packet-switched networks, but they’re just mouthing the words. They don’t actually understand any of those things.
Windows 1.0 to 10: The changing face of Microsoft’s landmark OS – Images of the key releases from three decades of the operating system’s history.
Survival skills: Business models for startups and large companies – A world’s expert explains the essential elements you need to develop a profitable and successful business. Required reading for every executive.
Ted Cruz gets ‘Shatnered’ for saying Capt. Kirk was Republican – The Republican presidential hopeful believes the Capt. Kirk’s “working class” status makes him lean to the right. Then, along came William Shatner.
Four Internet “Faux Pas” That We All Need to Relax About – Drunken Facebook messages. Accidentally tweeting something that was meant to be a Direct Message. That moment someone tells you that you hit “Reply All” by mistake. Realizing the goofy video you posted to YouTube for your friends now has 100,000 views.
Something to think about:
“If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.”
– Theodore Roosevelt
Today’s Free Downloads:
Manager – Looking for accounting software? Manager is free accounting software for small business. Windows, Mac and Linux.
Discover features that will save you time & money:
System Explorer – System Explorer is free , awards winning software for exploration and management of System Internals. This small software includes many usefull tools which help you Keep Your System Under Control . With System Explorer You get also fast access to File Database which help you to determine unwanted processes or threats . System Explorer is translated into 29 languages and is available for download in installer and portable version.
Turn Off the Lights – Turn Off the Lights is a browser extension that allows users to dim everything on their screen except for Flash and HTML5 videos they’re watching, minimizing distractions and making for a more pleasant viewing experience.
A lamp icon is displayed in the browser’s toolbar or in the address bar, and users can click on this icon to make the area surrounding the video dim. Clicking outside the video restores the screen back to normal. Users can adjust the opacity of the screen dimmer and select a color other than black if desired.
In Pursuit of Freedom – The Pushback Continues:
Pakistan bans BlackBerry Enterprise Server – Pakistan has reportedly ordered the nation’s carriers to cease offering services that route email through BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), a product that among other things encrypts email.
Pakistan’s Express Tribune reports that the nation’s Ministry of Interior last Friday instructed the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to tell telcos they must not offer the service from December 1st, depriving Pakistanis access to a secure e-mail service.
Security concerns have been cited as the reason behind the decision, with Pakistani authorities said to be worried that the origin and messages sent through BES can’t be tracked. Decryption of messages handled by BES also appears to be beyond Pakistan’s capabilities and is therefore another reason for the ban.
PTA spokesperson Khurram Mehran told the Express Tribune that there are only 4,000 or 5,000 BES users in Pakistan, so not many people will be inconvenienced. It’s felt subscribers have been given sufficient time to migrate to an unencrypted service.
Judge crucifies sheriff over his blitzkrieg on Backpage.com’s sex ads – A federal judge crucified the sheriff for the nation’s second-most populous county Friday, ordering Illinois, Cook County Sheriff Thomas Dart to back off on its attacks on Backpage.com’s sex ads—attacks that could soon put the classifieds portal out of business.
In a case testing the First Amendment and federal laws protecting Web operators for the speech of their users, Backpage sued Dart after he coerced Visa and Mastercard to refrain from doing business with the classifieds portal. Dart labeled the company a “sex trafficking industry profiteer” (PDF) because of its adult ads.
Backpage claimed in a Tuesday lawsuit (PDF) that Dart’s actions amount to “an informal extralegal prior restraint of speech.”
US District Judge John Tharp Jr. agreed in a Friday ruling (PDF) ordering the sheriff to cease the attacks.
The judge said Dart wrongly used his office and penned letters to essentially threaten the credit card companies to refrain from doing business with Backpage, despite an 11-year-business relationship the companies had with Backpage. The judge boiled down the issue to two questions: whether Dart’s letters “constitute a threat” and whether the credit card companies “involuntarily withdrew” business from Backpage.
French surveillance law is constitutional, highest court says – A surveillance law rushed through the French parliament in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo shootings in Paris in January is constitutional, the country’s highest court ruled late Thursday. The decision gives law enforcers and intelligence agencies the power to gather communications metadata—who is communicating with whom, where, and when—in real time, with few restrictions.
As the law on surveillance progressed through parliament, the government declared it “urgent”, meaning elected representatives in the Senate and National Assembly had only one opportunity to amend it instead of the usual two. They waved it through anyway. Some parliamentarians challenged parts of the law on constitutional grounds, calling on the Constitutional Council to give its verdict.
That arrived late Thursday, with the council declaring the law constitutional on all but a few points.