Latest Technology News

Stop users running specified programs with Simple Run Blocker

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Sordum has released Simple Run Blocker, a compact portable tool which can prevent users on your PC from running certain applications.

The program is very simple to use. Drag and drop any target executables onto the Simple Run Blocker interface, save those settings, and the application should be blocked (although we found you may need to restart Explorer or reboot, first).

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Android apps make way for Heartbleed exploits

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Lots of things have been said about OpenSSL bug Heartbleed, including what to do to counter possible exploits (many have advised users to change all their passwords) after it has reached the public's attention. The main focus has been on popular products from top companies such as Apple, Google and Microsoft. However, the actions of other developers (that may actually be inconspicuous in the whole Heartbleed debacle) can have a far-reaching effect as well.

A new report from FireEye notes that 150 million downloads of Android apps "contain OpenSSL libraries vulnerable to Heartbleed". As Google has said, Android itself may not be vulnerable to it, post version 4.2 Jelly Bean at least, but that advantage is lost if app developers expose users to the dangers of Heartbleed.

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SmartFTP debuts new ribbon-based interface, drops Windows XP and Vista support

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SmartSoft has unveiled SmartFTP 6.0 (32-bit) and SmartFTP 6.0 (64-bit), a major new update of its powerful FTP client for Windows machines. Version 6 debuts a new ribbon-based interface, plus vastly improved text editor and remote browser.

It also sees a rewrite of various features, removing all legacy code relating to Windows XP, which -- along with Vista -- is no longer supported as of this release.

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Digital Me: Will the next Cringely be from Gmail?

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My last column discussed the intersection between Big Data and Artificial Intelligence and where things might be heading. The question for this column is can I (Bob Cringely) be replaced by a machine?

Look below the fold on most news sites and you’ll see ads that look like news stories but aren’t: "One Weird Trick to Grow Extra Toes!", or "The 53 Hottest Ukrainian Grandmothers!" I’m waiting for "One Weird Trick to Becoming a Hot Ukrainian Grandmother with Extra Toes!" Read the stories and they are total crap, that is unless you have a fetish for Ukrainian Grandmas… or toes. They are all about getting us to click through page after page and be exposed to ad after ad. Alas, in SEOWorld (the recently added 10th level of Hell) some people call this progress.

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Mmmm, Microsoft shows that the Surface 2 can be yummy

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When you think of tablets, the iPad and Android variants seem very hip and sexy. While I love the Surface 2, it conjures images of nerds editing spreadsheets. As an owner of a Surface 2 (and spreadsheet-loving nerd) I know there is much more to Microsoft's tablet -- it is great for games and media too.

However, it seems Microsoft is intent on changing the public's perception of its awesome Surface 2. In a new video, the company features a hip, young, bakery owner named Loren Brill. Microsoft's tablet helps her bake yummy treats. Does she change the way you think about Surface?

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UK webhost 123-Reg in DDOS attack

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Businesses using 123-Reg's web hosting service were knocked offline on Wednesday evening following a reported distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.

123-Reg is the UK's largest domain provider hosting over 1.4 million websites. The company said it was hit by a DDoS style attack that caused disruption to some customers on its shared hosting packages.

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Bitdefender Total Security 2015 beta released

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Bitdefender has released its first public beta for Bitdefender Total Security 2015.

The interface has been revamped, automatically adapting to different resolutions and (Bitdefender says) working "fluidly on any touch screen device".

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Happy first birthday BitTorrent Sync

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It's hard to believe that it has been one year since BitTorrent released its Sync app. I was among the first testers when it was in private alpha, and it came at a welcome time, as Microsoft had announced it was killing Live Mesh, an app I used between my desktop and laptop.

Since then, Sync has gone to beta and then final release. It even released a Kindle Fire app just recently, adding even more integration with your home. It was already available for Windows, Mac, iOS, FreeBSD, Android and NAS.

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Apple Q2 2014 by the numbers: $45.6B revenue, $11.62 EPS

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The Apple of Wall Street's eye takes little bruising today, with announcement of fiscal second quarter results. During three months when concerns about falling revenues and profits was constant rumbling, the fruit-logo company defies the worst naysayers.

For fiscal Q2, Apple reports $45.6 billion revenue and net profit of $10.2 billion, or $11.62 a share. Gross margin: 39.3 percent. International sales accounted for 66 percent of revenues. A year earlier, the company reported revenue of $43.6 billion and $9.5 billion net quarterly profit, or $10.06 per share. Gross margin was 37.5 percent.

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Analyze your network from an Android or iOS device with Fing

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Once upon a time, you knew exactly what was connected to your home network: your desktop, a laptop maybe and perhaps even your mobile phone. These days, keeping track of networked devices -- from printers to smart TVs -- can be a painful task.

If you’re wondering what’s currently connected to your home network -- perhaps you’re worried about security, or surprised at how slow your internet speeds are -- then you need help. And if you’ve got an Android, iPhone or iPad, help is delivered in the form of Fing -- Network Scanner.

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Great Scott! Google Street View enables time travel -- flux capacitor not needed

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Time travel has been a fantasy for many. Popular movies such as the Back to the Future trilogy and Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure have piqued people's imaginations. After all, who wouldn't want to travel back in time to see the dinosaurs or travel forward to see the iPhone 27? That would be awesome!

Sadly, this is a dream that cannot be realized, as it is an impossibility. Man will never be able to travel through time -- it is just science fiction. However, Google has enabled a new Street View feature that simulates time travel.

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Amazon Prime gets exclusive deal for HBO content

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Amazon has been continuously adding video content to its Prime service, and now with its Fire TV on the market, this becomes a bit more important. Granted you can get Prime video on other set-top boxes, but the Amazon offering takes the integration to a new level.

Now the retailer announces a new exclusive deal, this time with HBO. Titles include "The Sopranos, Six Feet Under, The Wire, Big Love, Deadwood, Eastbound & Down, Family Tree, Enlightened, Treme, early seasons of Boardwalk Empire and True Blood, as well as mini-series like Band of BrothersJohn Adams and more. Seasons of Girls, The Newsroom and Veep will also become available throughout the multiyear deal", Amazon says. Game of Thrones is the big missing piece of the puzzle here, though that isn't really surprising.

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Cloud attacks increase as the IT world looks to the skies

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Moving systems to the cloud is usually seen as a safer and more secure option than running them on site. However, the findings of a new report suggest that there's no room for complacency.

The Spring 2014 Cloud Security Report from security-as-a-service provider Alert Logic reveals a significant increase in attacks carried out against both cloud and on-premises systems.

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Google wants to fund your solar panel installation

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Earth Day might be over but Google has announced another eco-friendly program to go along with yesterday’s news of a renewable energy purchase. This time, the company is partnering with SunPower Corporation for a new deal intended for homeowners.

"Together with SunPower Corporation we’re creating a new $250 million fund to help finance the purchase of residential rooftop solar systems -- making it easier for thousands of households across the US to go solar", says Google’s Rob Parker.

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1Password for iOS complete rebuild, 1Password for Mac improves mini tool, sync and export

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AgileBits Inc has released 1Password for iOS 4.5, a major rewrite of its password management tool for iPhone and iPad. The release is accompanied by a less radical, but still relatively major, upgrade to the Mac version with the release of 1Password for Mac 4.3.

The iOS version boasts a complete rebuild with the promise of improved speed and a more accessible Search tool. Support for AirDrop sharing of items and multiple vaults created using the Windows or Mac version have also been added.

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