Latest Technology News

Acer announces Windows 10 back-to-school computers

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Microsoft's Windows 10 launches tomorrow, so naturally it is the topic du jour. Chatter about the operating system will likely dominate the tech news for many days and weeks after too. You know what? Good. It is a damn good operating system -- the best version of Windows ever -- and it deserves the attention.

While Windows 10 is a free upgrade for many Windows 7 and 8.x users, many others are still on XP and Vista machines. Rather than pay for a Windows 10 license, you should probably buy a new computer instead. I understand the economy is still bad, but new machines are surprisingly affordable. Today, one of my favorite value-focused manufacturers, Acer, announces a new line of Windows 10 computers. While the focus is on "back-to-school", these machines are great for non-students too. The best part? You can buy some of them starting tomorrow.

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Internal training documents reveal how Facebook tackles diversity, bias, and discrimination

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Workforce diversity is something that has been brought into sharp focus in recent months as companies such as Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook reveal the make-up of their staff. White, middleclass, male employees dominate the world of technology, and this is certainly the case at Facebook -- even if a redesigned icon was an attempt to bring women to the fore.

Now the social network is embarking on something of a PR campaign, desperate to prove that it is doing everything it can to develop as diverse a workplace as possible. Today Facebook publishes sections of its employee training program that aims to eradicate the 'unconscious bias' that leads to -- in Facebook's words -- 'black sounding names' getting fewer callbacks than 'white sounding names'.

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Facebook told to allow the use of fake names

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Facebook comes in for a lot of criticism, but one thing that managed to rub a lot of people up the wrong way is its real names policy. For some time the social network has required its users to reveal their real name rather than allowing for the adoption of pseudonyms. This has upset many, including musicians and the drag community.

Now a German watchdog has told Facebook that its ban on fake names is not permitted. The Hamburg Data Protection Authority said that the social network could not force users to replace pseudonyms with real names, nor could it ask to see official identification.

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Obama administration rules out pardoning Edward Snowden

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The US government will continue to pursue Edward Snowden with a view to prosecuting him on espionage charges. The White House has rejected calls to pardon for Snowden who has been hailed as both a hero and a traitor for spilling the beans about NSA surveillance programs. The US government has sought to bring him to trial for compromising national security.

A We Are The People petition was signed by nearly 168,000 people who felt rather differently about the former NSA worker. "Edward Snowden is a national hero and should be immediately issued a full, free, and absolute pardon for any crimes he has committed or may have committed related to blowing the whistle on secret NSA surveillance programs".

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Will you upgrade to Windows 10?

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Microsoft officially launches its newest operating system tomorrow. OEMs like Acer, Lenovo, and Dell are shipping computers loaded with Windows 10, while some of you can claim free upgrades now. But will you? We want to know, as perhaps do other readers considering whether or not to make a go.

To be brutally honest, I seriously considered using headline: "Will you upgrade to Windows Death?" Because: if Windows 10 doesn't succeed it will be the last viable version given the success of Android or iOS; shipments of both mobile platforms either match or exceed Windows computers; and Microsoft's advancing cloud strategy signals the end of Windows as we have come to know it, as the operating system evolves and updates in a manner more like Chrome OS than the big release delivered every few years. Then there is the criticism, much of it in BetaNews comments, that makes upgrading to Windows 10 seem like Death.

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Pakistan bans BlackBerry services

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Pakistan has decided to ban Blackberry’s Enterprise Services and its Internet and messaging service, the media reported on Monday.

Telecom operators in the country have been instructed by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) to shut down Blackberry services by December.

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Open Threat Exchange brings a community approach to fighting attacks

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Combating cyber threats effectively means having fast access to information about the latest attacks so that you can respond quickly.

Security management company AlienVault is taking a community approach to this with the launch of an updated version of its Open Threat Exchange (OTX), based on social sharing technology.

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Meet the 3rd generation Moto X and Moto G: Hands-on first impressions from Motorola’s launch event

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In August 2013, Motorola Mobility -- which was owned by Google at the time -- released a beautiful phone called the Moto X that focused on providing a flagship user experience instead of trying to be the best Android phone by offering the best technical specifications; in other words, it wanted the Moto X to be the iPhone of the Android world.

This first generation of the Moto X was a great hit with the bloggers and journalists who reviewed it, but it did not sell in huge numbers. In order to compete with the flagship phones from Samsung (with its huge marketing budget), which typically came with removable batteries and microSD card slots, the Moto X had to have an amazing battery life and a really great rear-facing camera. While the cameras and battery life of the Moto X were good, they were not best-in-class, and consumers voted with their wallets accordingly.

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AIDA64 5.30 supports Windows 10 and Intel Skylake, broadens benchmarks

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Budapest-based FinalWire Ltd has released a major new version of its Windows diagnostic and benchmarking tool with the release of AIDA64 Extreme Edition 5.30.

The new release, also available as a portable build, introduces support for Intel’s forthcoming Skylake processor line while also promising advanced support for the RTM releases of Windows 10 and Windows Server 2016.

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Upgrading to Windows 10? Here are the compatible Antivirus products you need

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On the eve of the Windows 10 launch, the excitement is starting to build. Many consumers are preparing for the upgrade. After all, for Windows 7 and 8 users, this will be a free affair.

For the most part, unless you are using something very obscure, most of your existing programs should work fine. Antivirus and security solutions, however, are not all certified yet. Installing security software that is not yet tested with the new operating system could prove disastrous. Don't worry, AV-Comparatives has done the work for you and releases a list of "approved" security software. Is yours on the list?

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Apple and BMW may team up to make electric car

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Apple may be in talks with BMW about building an electric car together, which would serve as the first in a long line of cars with Apple logos on the front.

Manager Magazin (German) reports that Apple CEO Tim Cook met with BMW officials in Leipzig, Germany. The topic of these discussions was not officially disclosed, although it appears to be a periodic meeting between the two companies.

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Microsoft explains Windows 10 -- try to stay awake

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If you’re still undecided whether Windows 10 is for you or not, or you just want to find out a bit more about the forthcoming OS, Microsoft has a new video designed to walk you through the changes and new features.

The video is presented by Mohammed Samji of the Windows Team, and it’s about as laid back as you can imagine. Samji, dressed in pastel colors, talks in the sort of tone you tend to hear in apps designed to help insomniacs get to sleep, while a similarly relaxing tune burbles along in the background. Is Samji explaining Windows 10’s key principles, or attempting to hypnotize the viewers? Watch the video and decide for yourself.

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Crowd review site names best backup software

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When choosing software for business it helps to have a reliable source of information. Earlier this month we spoke to G2 Crowd to find out more about how its crowd sourcing of reviews works.

Today the company has launched its latest report looking at backup software. Made up of data from over 200 reviews across 11 products, the report names two Leaders and five High Performers in the category.

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Samsung will focus on Galaxy S6 edge Plus instead of Note 5

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Samsung is planning to unveil the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge Plus on the same day, August 13, but only one of the devices will reach the international market.

Instead of focusing efforts on the Galaxy Note 5, as Samsung has done in previous years, the Galaxy S6 edge Plus will be the primary device. The Galaxy Note 5 will only be in select markets, where the Galaxy Note series has performed strongly before.

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Spotify meets IFTTT to make your music a bit more fun

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Spotify is one of the top music services in business today. It's a tough market, with a growing field of competitors aiming to get your money. It can be good, and many people love it, but how could it become even better?

How about adding If This Then That (IFTTT) support? The service has added a new channel that allows you to utilize its capabilities for many functions associated with your music.

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