FBI braces for ISIS – Founder of app used by ISIS: ‘We shouldn’t feel guilty.’ – Key Issue to 2016 Elections: Paris Attacks – Ep841: Unleash Your Computer’s Potential – and more stories

FBI braces for ISIS holiday terror attacks

In the wee hours of July 4, FBI counterterrorism agents in the Boston area scrambled to thwart the last of a string of Islamic State terror plots they feared could be conducted during the patriotic holiday or soon after.

Just weeks earlier, an agent and Boston officers had shot and killed an ISIS sympathizer on the same streets, right before he boarded a bus armed with a military-style knife and plans to attack cops and behead a woman.

Read more here


Founder of app used by ISIS once said ‘We shouldn’t feel guilty.’ On Wednesday he banned their accounts

Pavel Durov knew that terrorists might be using his app to communicate. And he decided it was something he could live with.

“I think that privacy, ultimately, and our right for privacy is more important than our fear of bad things happening, like terrorism,” the founder of Telegram, a highly secure messaging app, said at a TechCrunch panel in September when asked if he “slept well at night” knowing his technology was used for violence.

“If you look at ISIS, yes, there’s a war going on in the Middle East,” he continued. “Ultimately, ISIS will find a way to communicate with its cells, and if any means doesn’t feel secure to them, they’ll [find something else]. We shouldn’t feel guilty about it. We’re still doing the right thing, protecting our users’ privacy.”

Read more here


Paris Attacks Raise Encryption as Key Issue to 2016 Elections

Presidential candidates who travel to Silicon Valley for fundraising may find themselves walking a precarious line between the privacy position of potential donors and calls for greater surveillance in the wake of the Paris attacks.

The weekend’s mass shootings and suicide bombings in France — together with the downing of a Russian airliner and a pair of suicide bombings in Beirut — have renewed calls for technology companies to provide government officials back-door access to encrypted communications on smartphones and messaging apps.

As Re/code noted yesterday, technology giants like Apple, Google and Facebook have pushed back against such measures, arguing that leaving holes in customers’ data encryption, no matter how well intentioned, would make them more vulnerable to hacking and cybercrime without necessarily making them safer.

Read more here


Optimizing Lifestyle and Work-Life by Speeding up Your Machines

As Vice President of Marketing at iolo technologies, Mr. Schoch was responsible for refocusing the company around its best-in-class computer performance product, System Mechanic, which he grew into the #1 product in its category, more than doubling the company's revenue.

Catch more of JJ Schoch on Tech Talk with Craig Peterson (Nov. 21, Saturday, 11am, EST)


Give Extra Life and Power to Your Machines

Larry O’Connor is Founder and CEO of Other World Computing, Inc. (OWC), a manufacturer and e-Tailer of Solid State Drives, data storage solutions, memory and accessories for Mac and PC computers. Started in 1988, the company has become an innovative leader in developing/delivering non-Apple/non-PC manufacturer storage solutions and upgrades to extend the performance, use-life of the SMB’s and individual’s computing device investment. In addition to guiding the technology and solutions activities for OWC, Larry also serves at the President of Newer Technology, Inc. and Price.com

Catch more of Larry O'Connor on Tech Talk with Craig Peterson (Nov. 21, Saturday, 11am, EST)


Pitfalls of the Connected Home – ‘Back To The Future’ Hoverboard Never Took Off – Florida Couple vs Apple’s ‘Wifi Assist’ – BlackBerry back starting at $700 – Wear Your Safety

Pitfalls of the Connected Home (Part 2)

In an effort to save money this summer, I tried painting the exterior of our home by myself. How hard can it be? Well, when I stood back and surveyed my work, it was completely uneven and mismatched. Some jobs, I learned, require a professional.

The same lesson applies for trying to connect my home to the Internet. As I explained last week, the result was mostly a disaster. And based on readers’ responses, I know I’m not alone. One reader told me a story about a “smart thermostat” that turned the heat on during the summer and killed the pet goldfish.

Read more here

Why a ‘Back to the Future’ Hoverboard Never Took Off

We were promised hoverboards. And if you’re angry because we don’t have them, the movie that planted the dream might also be to blame.

When it came out in 1989, “Back to the Future II” suggested we would be bouncing off walls and racing cars while floating above the ground, all with the ease of a skateboard. Our futuristic and really fun transportation device would surely arrive by Oct. 21, 2015. (Yes, we’re milking a meme here, but for a good cause: hoverboards.)

Read more here

Florida Couple Files $5 Million Suit Against Apple Over ‘Wi-Fi Assist’

A Florida couple is suing Apple for $5 million, claiming the company is misleading consumers about the data charges they’ll incur through the new Wi-Fi Assist feature that’s part of the latest mobile operating system.

William and Suzanne Phillips filed suit Friday in U.S. District Court in San Jose, accusing Apple of deceptive business practices, false advertising and misrepresentation. The couple is seeking class-action certification, saying other consumers have been harmed by this feature of iOS 9.

Read more here

BlackBerry’s Priv Android Slider Phone up for Preorder at $699

We knew BlackBerry’s Android slider phone would be expensive, but at least the Priv isn’t as pricey as it could have been.

BlackBerry started taking preorders for the phone Friday, but at $699, not the $749 price some had feared. That puts the device in the same ballpark as an unsubsidized iPhone or Samsung Galaxy and gives the phone a fighting chance if high-end phone buyers find they like the design and value the security and privacy features BlackBerry has added to Google’s Android.

Read more here

Wear Your Safety

A Wearable Band that Bonds

The kind of product that is not just watching out for you, but also watches over your family. An assurance that you can monitor your kids even if you are not there.

Evan Lazarus, CTO of Safe Family, shares more about PAXIE™ on Tech Talk With Craig Peterson.

Find out more about Safe Family

Fusion of Fashion and Efficient Wearables

At BURG, we are dedicated to creating wearable technology that fits seamlessly into your lifestyle. By creating a wonderful synergy between cutting edge technology and avant-garde, Dutch design BURG truly makes Wearables not only functional, but fashionable as well. Where most Wearable companies focus on pairing their Smartphones to their Smartwatches, BURG sets itself apart by exclusively producing autonomous Smart Phone Watches that can phone and text without tethering to a Smartphone, making BURG ‘The Smarter, Smart Phone Watch.”

Find out more about BURG

Smart Eyewear That Can Save Your Life

“Quality should not be a question or surcharge; people just deserve it. You deserve it. Reliability, precision, and peace of mind. That’s why we ensure that our products are of the highest quality – and if something is not up to your standards, then it is certainly not to ours.” – JINS

Find out more about JINS

Print Friendly

Hillary Server Ditched – Spend All Your Money On Travel – Drones Monitoring Construction Workers

How Hillary’s server firm ditched her when scandal broke

‘If not from a morality point of view, then just from a business point of view, just because something like that would destroy a company.

‘During my whole time at Platte River I don’t recall us ever wiping an entire server and deleting all the email history that a company has ever had.

‘Any wiping or anything that happened after [Platte River’s involvement] was not done by Platte River as far as I know or Techno Rescue.

‘As far as I know all that we used Techno Rescue for was disposal of physical hardware, the physical hardware was not in Denver, so I can’t see how Techno Rescue would have had anything to do with it.

Allis’s brother Iyad Allis, who is listed online as the company’s regulatory contact, was charged with selling illegal firearms and bank fraud in a 2008 FBI sting and ultimately pleaded guilty in 2009 to four counts of bank fraud, according to court records obtained by The Washington Free Beacon.


One billion people used Facebook on Monday.

Seriously. One billion people — or roughly one third of the entire Internet population — used the social network in a single day. It’s the first time Facebook has ever crossed that daily milestone, according to a post from CEO Mark Zuckerberg.


Science says it’s totally OK to spend all your money on travel

Basically, we get used to the things we own, and over time the happiness we derive from items dwindles. On the flip side, happiness that stems from things we’ve done actually goes up as time passes because those experiences become a part of us and shape our identity. (It’s why the baby pink Nintendo DS you relentlessly requested for your 20th birthday now sits buried and forgotten somewhere in a bag beneath your bed, whereas your four-month jaunt through South America is still recalled often and fondly, years later.)

Gilovich suggests that instead of saving for that plasma screen TV, a much sounder path to happiness is through spending your money on experiences like travel, or even outdoor activities, new skills or visiting exhibitions.


Construction Workers Are Now Being Monitored By Drones

Constructions workers building the stadium for the Sacramento Kings in California have a boss watching over them in a very literal way. They are being monitored by drones.

Once a day, drones fly over the construction site and take videos that are converted into 3D images, which can then be compared to construction plans to highlight areas of structure that are falling behind schedule, MIT Technology review reports.


Tesla’s Model S P85D is so good it broke Consumer Reports‘ rating system

How good is Tesla’s Model S P85D? Insanely good, says Consumer Reports, with the electric sedan performing better than any other car the magazine has reviewed and breaking its rating system in the process. “The Tesla initially scored 103 in the Consumer Reports’ Ratings system, which by definition doesn’t go past 100,” said Consumer Reports. “The car set a new benchmark, so we had to make changes to our scoring to account for it.” The P85D had to make do with a score of 100 instead.


Apple Will Unveil Revamped iPhone September 9


Those Won’t Be the Last Murder Videos You’ll See on Twitter and Facebook

Americans are used to hearing about gun violence. What made Wednesday morning’s event different from other shootings was that it happened on live TV, as two reporters from Roanoke, Va., were broadcasting for the local CBS affiliate WDBJ7.

What was also new was that the shooter apparently filmed the event himself, and appeared to post that video on Facebook and Twitter, which then autoplayed in people’s feeds. These social networks are built for viral content and autoplay helps spur that — they’ve been pushing in this direction for some time now — but autoplay becomes a major problem when viral also happens to be vile.


Why China’s stock market crash is so bad for Apple

The basic problem? Apple sells iPhones for yuan but pays suppliers with dollars.

The basic issue is that Apple doesn’t like to change its retail prices in response to currency fluctuations. So when a foreign currency declines in value relative to the dollar, the number of dollars Apple earns per sale goes down. Conversely, foreign currency appreciation means Apple is earning more dollars.

Last quarter, 27 percent of all Apple’s revenue came from Greater China. More importantly, more than 50 percent of Apple’s revenue growth came from China.

Even if Apple’s sales — in terms of number of units — hold up, the value of those sales is going to decline at a time when the company was counting on rapid growth to help offset the essentially inevitable slowdown of iPhone sales in the already highly saturated US market.


The Fembots of Ashley Madison: The details and statistics

We found dozens of accounts that appear to have been created with computers owned by Fox News (49), the New York Times (85), Condé Nast (29), and, yes—the AP (30). Most interesting, perhaps, are the ten Ashley Madison accounts created by computers that appear to be associated with Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network.

The Ashley Madison member database contained 37 million profiles of people seeking discreet affairs. What I discovered was that, at most, about 12 thousand of these profiles seemed to belong to women who were active on the site. The rest of the 5.5 million women had profiles that appeared to have been abandoned directly after they were created.

Men can even pay a premium rate for a “guaranteed affair.” To email women, men have to pay extra, and then they have to pay more still if they want to send a “gift” of a silly gif or picture. Using the site as a man is a little bit like playing Farmville, except instead of blowing your money on fake cow upgrades, you’re blowing it on messages to fake women. At least Farmville is up front about the fact that you’re burning money for a dumb fantasy.

Still, the business model worked. According to CNN, Ashley Madison’s parent company Avid Life Media made $115.5 million in revenue in 2014.


NASA Just 3-D Printed Part of a Rocket

The space agency announced Wednesday that it had built a turbopump using a 3-D printer. The device, which is designed to boost the power of an engine, is one of the most complex rocket parts ever designed with a 3-D printer.

According to NASA, the 3-D printed turbopump has 45 percent fewer parts than a turbopump made via traditional methods. The device is able to power a rocket engine capable of generating 35,000 pounds of thrust and is able to survive in an environment where fuel is burned at greater than 6,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

NASA is also 3-D printing injectors and other engine parts in order to make the production of future spacecraft more efficient.


Print Friendly

Internet Trends – Chrome Blocking Ads – Paying Your Babysitter – Show Notes 2015-06-27

5 Takeaways For Content Marketers From Mary Meeker‘s Internet Trends Report

Mary Meeker has seen it all. The famous VC, who is a partner at Silicon Valley firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, has been releasing big-time reports on the state of the Internet since 1995, when she was the lead manager for Netscape’s infamous IPO. That’s a long time ago in the tech world—in 1995 Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel, who now has a net worth of $1.5 billion, was gearing up to disrupt his kindergarten class.

  1. You need to get your mobile video strategy in place right now
  2. Particularly, your vertical video strategy
  3. Chat apps are taking over
  4. User-generated/curated content is booming
  5. 12–24-year-olds are addicted to visual content


Google Will Now Tell Everyone When its Driverless Cars are in a Crash

Google has issued its first public report listing traffic accidents involving its self-driving cars.

The decision by the tech giant comes after years of silence about any crashes involving its test vehicles on public roads. Now, the company will publish the details online.

In a monthly report for May published Friday, Google acknowledged that its self-driving cars had been involved in 12 minor accidents over six years of testing.


Google Chrome Is About to Make the Internet Way Better

Noisy, distracting ads get an automated gag order. Google’s Chrome browser is adding a new feature that will detect the primary video on a webpage and automatically freeze other noisy, distracting Flash-based advertisements that rattle and shake for users’ attention.


This Calculator Shows How Much You Should Pay Your Babysitter

Besides how to find a good babysitter, one of the top questions for hiring a babysitter is how much you should offer to pay the sitter. Care.com has the answer for what’s normal in your area.

Babysitters make more in cities with a high cost of living. According to Care.com’s study, the average hourly babysitting rate in San Francisco, for example, is $16.65, compared to the national average of $13.44 an hour. Babysitters in all of the 75 cities examined all made over $11 an hour.


Edward Snowden: The World Says No to Surveillance

Two years on, the difference is profound. In a single month, the N.S.A.’s invasive call-tracking program was declared unlawful by the courts and disowned by Congress. After a White House-appointed oversight board investigation found that this program had not stopped a single terrorist attack, even the president who once defended its propriety and criticized its disclosure has now ordered it terminated.

This is the power of an informed public.


DNA carries traces of past events meaning poor lifestyle can affect future generations

Genetic faults caused by trauma, poor lifestyle or environmental stress can be passed down to future generations, scientists at the University of Cambridge have discovered. In fact, around five per cent of our genetic code carries traces of past events, meaning that trauma, poor diet or poor lifestyle choices may by leaving a devastating legacy for children and grandchildren.


Apple patents tracking technology so accurate it lets you track friends inside

Apple’s Find My Friends app (pictured) lets users easily share and monitor the location of family and loved ones but the firm’s latest patent reveal plans to extend this to include customizable notifications that alert friends when you leave or arrive at a certain location, and the option to track a route more accurately.


iPad Pro: Apple’s Rumored 12-13 Inch Tablet

The “iPad Pro” is said to be an even larger version of the iPad Air, with a display measuring in at 12.9 inches. Perhaps aimed at the enterprise market, it may feature an ultra high-resolution display and an A9 processor.



Print Friendly

Tax Return Breach – Miami and Pre-Crime – Highest Paying Engineering Jobs

IRS believes Russians are behind tax return data breach

The IRS believes that a major cyber breach that allowed criminals to steal the tax returns of more than 100,000 people originated in Russia, two sources briefed on the data theft tell CNN.

Between February and May, criminals tried to access the tax accounts of 200,000 people, succeeding in about half the attempts, the IRS said. The agency said it plans to notify all 200,000 people to tell them that third parties appear to have access to their Social Security numbers and other personal information.

The roughly 100,000 taxpayers whose tax information was accessed will be offered free credit monitoring, the agency said.


Not science fiction: Miami wants to predict when and where crime will occur

Armed with high-tech software and years of crime data, Miami police believe they will soon be able to stop crimes by predicting when and where they will occur. In Miami’s case, the department is funding the implementation of HunchLab and other software programs with a $600,000 federal grant doled out by the Bureau of Justice Assistance to encourage smart policing tactics.

It sounds a little like something out of a science fiction novel, but the department is in the process of adopting a system called HunchLab that produces maps showing small areas where specific crimes are likely to be committed during shifts. The probability program is a geographical version of “predictive policing” software, which more departments are using — even if, in the words of one supportive cop, it’s “kind of scary.”


These are the Highest Paying Jobs for Engineering Majors

  • VP, Business Development: $151,000 with a basic Engineering degree.
  • Chief Architect, IT: Tie – $151,000 with an Electrical Engineering degree.
  • VP, Construction Management Operations: $134,000 with a Civil Engineering degree.
  • Sales Director: $125,000 with a Mechanical Engineering degree.
  • Network Architect: $119,000 with an Electrical Engineering degree.
  • Principal Electrical Engineer: $117,000 with an Electrical Engineering degree.


Is the internet on the brink of collapse?

In just 20 years, if usage rates continue, all of Britain’s power supply could be consumed by internet use.

The cables and fibre optics that send information to our laptops, smartphones and tablets will have reached their limit to send data within eight years, experts warn.

So far, engineers have managed to keep ahead of demand, increasing internet speeds 50-fold in the last decade alone. Until now, internet firms have simply sent more and more data down the single fibre as demand rises. But optical fibres have reached their physical capacity, they cannot transfer any more light.


Tesla’s $3,000 Powerwall Will Let Households Run Entirely On Solar Energy

The Tesla Powerwall charges using solar power, but it also integrates with the grid “to harness excess power and give customers the flexibility to draw energy from their own reserve.” The batteries recharge in a ‘smart’ way, saving money by picking low-rate periods when electricity is cheapest. They store solar
energy for later, for example overnight, and can act as a back-up in the event of a power outage.

Removing dirty energy is an ambitious plan — much like space travel — but Musk believes it can be done. He explained that 160 million battery packs could “transition” power usage in the U.S. to renewable energy, while 900 million units could shift the entire world’s energy needs. Then there is the potential to make the world’s cars run on clean energy.


This Tech Keeps You Safe From Hackers

But consumers can protect their own computers very easily by encrypting their data too. Windows users can use the BitLocker application to encrypt their drives, while Apple offers a program called FileVault2 to do the same thing on Macs. Still, with the Internet of Things promising to bring us lots more web-connected devices, this is only the beginning for encryption technologies. With millions if not billions more computing devices coming online — only some of which are encrypting their communications — a lot more data is in danger of being exposed.


Five Best Streaming Music Services

Google Play Music, Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Prime Music, Rdio.


Remember that study that showed that eating chocolate every day helped with weight loss?

It was all an elaborate hoax — an attempt to show how “Junk Science” really can perpetrate incredible myths that just aren’t true.

One premise? Testing bitter chocolate as a dietary supplement. Why? It is a favorite of the “whole food” fanatics. “Bitter chocolate tastes bad, therefore it must be good for you,” he said. “It’s like a religion.”


How Bad Bots Are Destroying The Internet

A quarter of the cars on the “Information Superhighway” with you are being driven by mindless bandits looking to steal anything they can.

Last year was the first time in history that bots outnumbered people on the web. According to research from Distil Networks, almost 60% of 2014’s web traffic consisted of automated bits of code, 23% of which exist to do dirty work for fraudsters and hackers. “It’s getting worse,” says Rami Essaid, Distil’s CEO. “Over the past ten years, they went from just kind of being out there and easy to detect to being really, really sophisticated.”

Meanwhile, T-Mobile, China Mobile, China Telecom, and China Unicom are being overrun by bad bots on the mobile web. This is a huge problem because there isn’t yet a lot of virus protection for mobile Internet devices, and last year there were more mobile than desktop web users for the first time in history. As a result, hackers are racing to exploit smartphones and tablets. In 2013, less than a percentage point of mobile traffic was bad bots. In 2014, that figure skyrocketed to between 6-8%. That’s a scary number because there are many more mobile devices than there are computers, so a vast majority of handhelds haven’t encountered a bot — yet.


Print Friendly