Latest Technology News

You won't see Nessie, but you can now visit Loch Ness via Google Maps

loch-ness

The Loch Ness Monster is right up there with Bigfoot and the Abominable Snowman, and many lesser known legends as well. We're not here to tell you what to believe, that's entirely up to you. Either way, Loch Ness is one of the most famous locations in Scotland and you can now visit it from the comfort of your home or office.

Google Maps has gone to the trouble of putting the famous lake into Street View -- no monsters involved. It conjures up images of the famous Surgeon's Photo, the most enduring, iconic and fraudulent image of Nessie. Still, the location is beautiful, and for those not able to make the trip this is the next best thing.

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YouTube kills off support for older devices -- is yours affected?

Youtube television

YouTube has stopped supporting devices that make use of the second version of its Data API. In practice the move, which was announced more than a year ago, is forcing users to look into alternative ways of watching YouTube videos, and likely also taking many by surprise.

For those who are not familiar with it, YouTube's Data API allows developers to implement YouTube functionality into their apps. The second version is mostly used on older devices, with the list including TVs, smartphones, tablets, Blu-Ray discs and more. Here's what you should do, if you're affected.

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Is Moore's Law still relevant 50 years on?

Gordon-Moore

With the rapid pace of change in today’s digital world, it is easy to dismiss, or certainly forget, that the technology we take for granted today, such as personal computers and smartphones, only exist as the result of years and years of pioneering work. Moore’s Law, the observation that semiconductor density is rising at an exponential rate, was uttered 50 years ago but continues to be as relevant today as it was in 1965, perhaps more so.

The future of the smartphone industry, wearables and the Internet of Things all depend on the technology industry developing, faster, smaller, more efficient and cheaper processors. For now, at least, chipmakers like Intel are managing to maintain Moore’s Law, but it is becoming increasingly difficult.

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New cloud agent brings enterprises greater security and asset control

Cloud storage

Increased use of the cloud and hybrid systems is bringing new challenges for businesses needing to ensure their systems are secure and compliant.

A new Cloud Agent Platform (CAP) from cloud security specialist Qualys provides organizations with a flexible solution to assess the security and compliance of their IT assets in real time, whether they're on-site, cloud-based or mobile endpoints.

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Sysinternals announces Sysmon 3.0, Autoruns 13.3, Regjump 1.1, Process Monitor 3.11

ProcessExplorer1

Microsoft Sysinternals has just announced its round of updates for April, this time including updates for Sysmon, Autoruns, Regjump and Process Monitor.

Background monitor Sysmon 3.0 now reports remote thread creation events, perhaps improving the chance of detecting code injection attempts. Process names have been added to process terminate events, and filters are more flexible and easier to use.

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Microsoft brings OneDrive app to Apple Watch

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Microsoft has been quick on the ball when it comes to supporting other platforms, adding OneNote with an experimental keyboard to Android Wear a few weeks after the launch, and now OneDrive on Apple Watch before the device even launches.

It is part of the new Microsoft goals, to have services on all platforms to keep customers loyal. Microsoft doesn’t have a lot of mobile market share, meaning it needs to focus on iOS and Android in order to keep Office and other services relevant against competition.

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Microsoft goes Down Under -- retail store coming to Australia

kangaroo

A visit to the Microsoft Store can be a very fun experience. If you're like me, playing with laptops, tablets and Xbox is like going to an amusement park. Unfortunately, the closest Microsoft store to my home is about an hour away at a mall. This means I cannot go as often as I want. If you think an hour commute is bad, however, imagine the poor people of Australia -- they have to board an airplane to visit one!

Luckily for the Australian people, this will soon change. You see, a Microsoft Store is opening in Australia for the first time ever. In other words, Microsoft is going Down Under.

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OnePlus One invites are dead, but OnePlus 2 will resurrect them

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I am a huge gadget guy, and yet I have never owned an iPhone because it is too expensive and restrictive. Android is my mobile platform of choice for a number of reasons. It is a Linux-based operating system (sweet), it has an accessible file system (awesome), and the handsets can be affordable (woo-hoo). This is in stark contrast to Apple's rotten iOS ideology.

While the expensive (yet not restrictive) Nexus 6 is my current smartphone, I did consider a different, less costly model before I got it -- the OnePlus One. That Android phone is very affordable and powerful, but it had one fatal flaw -- a lame invite scheme. Whether invites were implemented due to strong demand or as a way to create perceived demand, it rubbed me the wrong way. I'm not into playing games when it comes to spending my hard-earned money. Luckily, this is changing. To celebrate the one-year anniversary of announcing the phone, OnePlus is killing the invite system for it. Yes, anyone can buy the One at any time (as long as there is stock). Unfortunately, not all of the news is good.

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Download your Google search history for some amusing reading

Download your Google search history for some amusing reading

Google collects a lot of data about its users -- a lot of data. Much of this data is used for advertising purposes but there's also a lot of data that you might want to make use of yourself... even if it's only for entertainment.

All those searches you performed when you were drunk? These are now available to download! Brace yourself for what could turn into hours of amusement -- or possibly sphincter tightening embarrassment -- as a new addition to Google History means you can grab a copy of this history for posterity, and gain some interesting stats into the bargain.

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Now you can Direct Message (almost) anyone on Twitter

Now you can Direct Message (almost) anyone on Twitter

Twitter today announces a number of key changes to the way its messaging system works. Until now it has only been possible to exchange a private Direct Message with another user if you both follow each other. This all changes as Twitter introduces the ability to DM anyone as long as they have the feature enabled on their account.

Just last week, Twitter announced that it will use a Dublin-based branch to handle all non-US account data but today's news is all about communication. If you're happy to receive DMs from anyone on Twitter, you can flip the switch on a setting that makes this possible.

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My Two months with Moto 360 [review]

Moto 360 Docked

A smartwatch by any other name is compromise. The question: How much are you willing to pay, if anything, for the privilege? No matter what any manufacturer promises, battery life will never be enough, particularly when daily recharging is the minimum requirement. If you use the wristwear as prescribed, no less is demanded, regardless of the device maker. None delivers daily use without sacrificing something.

Nearly all these mini-computers on the wrist aren't smart enough. You need a phone, too. Is two of one and half-dozen of the other worth the trouble? The answer depends much on your lifestyle. If you text and drive, and can't break the habit, a smartwatch could save your life or others. If your mobile handset feels like a ball and chain, adopting glance-and-go lifestyle can liberate you. But if your smartphone is practically surgically attached, for its frequent use, you shouldn't add another tech accessory. If your phone battery often runs out, because you forget to plug in, don't multiply your troubles. If you don't wear a watch now, and haven't for years, don't bother.

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Buffalo announces rugged MiniStation Extreme NFC USB 3.0 hard drive

Buffalo_MiniStation_Extreme

While many people focus on speed and capacity when buying storage devices, an often overlooked aspect is security. Of course, not everything necessarily needs to be encrypted and protected; while Aunt Edith's recipes and your family reunion photos are valuable to you, they aren't exactly the target of hackers or rogue government nations.

If you do need to encrypt and protect files, however, there are many options available to you. Today, Buffalo announces a unique drive, which offers NFC to securely access the hardware-encrypted drive. Rather than using biometrics or a password, an NFC smart card is all you need to unlock the rugged, water and dust resistant, military-grade MiniStation Extreme NFC USB 3.0 hard drive.

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So much for Apple exclusivity, PlayOn gets HBO NOW

playon

When Apple announced HBO NOW for Apple TV people were riveted by the fact the company had once again pulled off a deal reminiscent of iTunes music deals. Except the rumors claimed the exclusivity would last through July and it didn't. The app quickly came to other services and then the channel itself launched on Sling TV, making the app somewhat unneeded.

Now things progress further as PlayOn is offering HBO NOW. The app has long been expected and anticipated as it gives viewers the ability to watch the premium channel without the previous need of having a cable or satellite subscription -- something HBO GO is saddled with. It comes just in time for some folks (or perhaps too late) as HBO is taking action against those who've downloaded episodes of Game of Thrones illegally.

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One Week Later: Windows 10 Technical Preview for Phones on my daily Lumia 925

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Microsoft made it pretty clear: Windows 10 Technical Preview for Phones is still only meant for serious technical testers only. Of anything I've learned after one full week using my daily Lumia 925 on the preview release, it's that this OS is far from ready for primetime. But that's not necessarily a bad thing, per se.

I decided to write up some of my thoughts about Windows 10 Technical Preview for Phones 10051 before I rolled back my phone to Windows Phone 8.1. Yes, willingly, I spent the last work week using my daily Lumia 925 on preview build 10051, the latest and only second release Microsoft has publicly doled out for the community.

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Microsoft enters the PaaS market with Azure Service Fabric

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Cloud computing has stepped up the pace of app development, with many businesses coming under pressure to deliver new services fast.

Following on from last month's launch of the Azure IoT Suite, tech giant Microsoft is stepping into the platform as a service (PaaS) space with Azure Service Fabric.

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