Latest Technology News

Reports that uTorrent silently installs Bitcoin crapware are... crap

Reports that uTorrent silently installs Bitcoin crapware are... crap

Sometimes it's easy to be swayed by what's being written online. At the moment there are lots of stories creeping out about the iPad Pro and Apple Watch, none of which are founded in any fact whatsoever. Still, making stuff up, popping it in quotes and attributing it to an anonymous source is great fun, right?

It may be fun, but it's not really fair on the reader. Another story which popped up on my radar today was about uTorrent -- the popular BitTorrent client that's loved and hated in equal measure. Stories on Trusted Reviews, Engadget and the Verge suggest a Bitcoin mining tool called Epic Scale is installed without permission, and is a tricky blighter to remove. There's an easy way to find out; let's just install it.

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Hands on with Microsoft Office for Mac 2016 Preview


After a five-year gap, Microsoft has unveiled the first public beta of its forthcoming Office 2016 for Mac with the release of Microsoft Office for Mac 2016 Preview. The new release is free for all Yosemite users during the remainder of the product’s pre-release phase, with the final version slated for release later this year.

Office for Mac 2016 Preview ships with five components: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and OneNote. It boasts a refreshed and optimized codebase, Retina-friendly visuals and support for full-screen mode.

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Wiper Messenger now lets you send Bitcoin to your friends


Wiper is a messaging service which offers an interesting privacy and security-centric option. It lets users delete their conversations, on-demand, from the other users' smartphones as well as Wiper's servers. I took a look at what it can do in a previous article, which you can check out here.

In the meantime, Wiper has received a couple of major updates which improve the user experience and add new features to the mix. Among the highlights is the ability to send and receive Bitcoins straight from the app.

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WeatherMate now portable, supports 100+ US weather maps


Its last big release was back in 2007, but Windows weather monitor WeatherMate has jumped back to life with the release of version 4.0, and a host of major improvements.

The program can now display a vast number of detailed US radar and weather maps, organized into categories like "Current Conditions", "Forecasts", "Severe Weather", "Travel", "Health", "Aviation", "Marine", "Golf" and "Farming".

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Best Windows apps this week


One-hundred and twenty one in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps and games released for Windows in the past seven days.

If you are interested in the development of Windows 10, you may be interested in screenshot leaks of build 10031 and build 10022 which allow you to glimpse at new or improved features.

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Oracle: How about some adware to go with that new Java for Mac?


One of the things I -- and I assume a lot of fellow users -- like about using a Mac is that most OS X programs do not try to trick the user into installing adware. In fact, a lot of the programs I use do not even feature a typical setup, as they can be installed simply by copying them to the Applications folder. For someone coming from Windows, it may feel impossible to grasp at first -- yes, you can actually enjoy the install process. Wow!

Of course, there are developers who do not care about the experience their users have during and after the setup, so they bundle adware with their programs. Thankfully, on Macs it's easier to spot, but it's still something to look out for at times, especially if you wish to install Oracle's latest Java release.

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Facebook's inactive account cull means fewer likes for pages

Facebook's inactive account cull means fewer likes for pages

Like just about any online service, Facebook has a huge number of dead and dormant accounts. It could be that the owner has died, they might have lost interest, or they may be spam accounts that are no longer used. Facebook is now having a spring clean, sweeping aside inactive accounts, and this could have an interesting side effect for page owners.

Accounts that have been purposely deactivated, or memorialized after a death, are currently still factored into the 'like' count for pages. This is set to change, so many page owners should brace themselves for a sudden drop in likes over the coming weeks.

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Financial companies seek cloud strategy for secure relationship

cloud money dollars

Cloud technology is being adopted across a wide range of industry sectors and financial companies are no exception. But a new report from the Cloud Security Alliance suggests that many of them are still looking for the right strategy.

The survey targeted executives from banking, insurance and investment firms around the world. Whilst it found that cloud computing is becoming more and more prevalent throughout the financial sector, many respondents still don't have a firm strategy.

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Microsoft and Google working together on Angular 2 JavaScript framework

Microsoft and Google working together on Angular 2 JavaScript framework

There are unlikely partnerships, and there are unlikely partnerships -- Google and Microsoft certainly make for strange bedfellows. At developer conference ng-conf in Salt Lake City, Google's Angular team revealed that it has been working with the TypeScript Team from Microsoft to produce Angular 2.

The worlds of TypeScript and AtScript have converged, resulting in the collaborative effort that is Angular 2. The new version of the JavaScript framework will be written in TypeScript and will be used to develop the next generation of web sites and web apps.

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All Windows versions are vulnerable to FREAK

OS X, iOS and Linux have more vulnerabilities than Windows

When the FREAK vulnerability was brought to our attention earlier this week, Windows was not originally believed to be affected by it. Apple and Google took the heat, as the cryptographers who made the discovery named OpenSSL (which is used by Android, among others) and Apple TLS/SSL clients (like Safari) as being vulnerable to FREAK attacks (short for Factoring Attack on RSA-EXPORT Keys).

However, a new security advisory released by Microsoft yesterday paints a different picture. In reality, all supported versions of Windows, including Server products, are vulnerable to FREAK attacks. Microsoft isn't discussing non-supported versions of Windows -- like Windows XP -- for obvious reasons, but it is safe to say that they are also impacted.

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Windows 10 Build 10031 leak shows smaller Start button plus transparency

Windows 10 Build 10031 leak shows smaller Start button plus transparency

Wzor has come up with the goods again. While many have been disappointed by the lack of new Windows 10 builds in February, appetites have been whetted by a steady stream of unofficial screenshot leaks and even complete builds. Now the Russian leaker has published screenshots from build 10031.

What's new? Microsoft appears to have listened to calls for the introduction of transparency, as the Start menu is now semi-transparent. This is not the only change to the Start menu -- the Start button is also smaller than in previous builds. Could this be the build which is made publicly available in coming days? It's entirely possible.

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SyMenu now a launcher for SysInternals, NirSoft, and more


Portable start menu and program manager SyMenu has been updated to version 4.06 with new Sysinternals support.

You can now browse the full catalog of Sysinternals tools, select and download Autoruns, Process Explorer, or whatever else you need. Whatever you choose is downloaded to your USB key (or other destination), and added to the program menu.

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HTC Re Vive promises an amazing VR experience


The HTC Re Vive looks to be the main contender against Oculus Rift Crescent Bay, according to early hands-on tests by press at the Game Developer Conference in San Francisco and Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Using Valve’s own Steam VR platform, the HTC Re Vive does more than strap a smartphone onto a VR headset, it offers the complete package similar to the Oculus Rift.

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Monodraw is the Visio of ASCII art


At first glance, Monodraw’s first public beta looks much like any other OS X diagramming tool. Choose from various themed palettes, drag and drop shapes around on the page, link them up, add captions, tweak colors and more.

The program is versatile, too, able to build flowcharts, layouts, even entity-relationship diagrams.

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Doctors at UCSD are using Kinect for Windows as part of their medical tools


Kinect started off for Xbox 360, but it's morphed since then to adapt to the newer Xbox One as well as Microsoft's operating system. There seems to be no end to the uses the device can be utilized for. However, the medical field is one of the most specialized industries around and adoption of new technology can be hard to find, with the rigorous requirements involved.

Now the doctors at the University of California at San Diego have managed to find a way to incorporate Kinect for Windows into their job. "The project, called Lab-in-a-Box, is the brainchild of UCSD researcher Nadir Weibel and his colleagues at the San Diego Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center", the Kinect team explains.

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