Latest Technology News

From the Black Forest to the Black Sea -- cruise the Danube with Google Maps

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When you think of the world's majestic rivers many names come to mind -- the Mississippi,  Amazon, Nile, Seine, Thames, and several others. The Danube also springs to mind, as the beauty of the famous river sprawls out, spanning multiple nations and attracting those who wish to go on one of its famous cruises.

The allure was too much to resist for Google and the company dispatched a Street View team to take that popular boat ride. The result is a stunning journey down the famous body of water, going from one end to the other.

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Backup? What's a backup? One in five Brits don't save their PC data

USB stick keyboard backup

Today is World Backup Day, I'm not sure if it's significant that it comes just before April Fool's Day, but it does seem that the backup message isn't getting through to everyone.

A new survey of 1,000 UK adults by digital storage manufacturer Verbatim reveals that one in five have never backed up their home computers and more than a third never back up their mobiles.

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Microsoft announces Surface 3 -- thinner, lighter, and runs full Windows

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Surface Pro 3 is the tablet that can replace your laptop, according to Microsoft. Assuming you spend money buying a Type Cover for it of course. My colleague Brian Fagioli absolutely loves his Surface Pro 3, but it’s not cheap.

If you fancy the slate, but your budget won’t stretch to the asking price, there’s good news -- Microsoft has just announced a cheaper follow up to Surface 2, called, naturally enough, Surface 3, and it’s cheaper than the Pro version, and doesn’t run Windows 8.x RT like its predecessor.

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Anonymous proxies used to carry out shotgun DDoS attacks

DDoS attack

We're all increasingly concerned about our privacy and the footprint that we leave on the internet. It's not surprising then that more of us are turning to anonymous proxies to hide our origin IP and HTTP details.

But new research from website security company Incapsula has uncovered a darker side to the use of anonymizers as a source of DDoS attacks.

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Project Spartan: fat, chunky, and devoid of style and features

Project Spartan: fat, chunky, and devoid of style and features

After all of the talk, some action. Microsoft has been gentling building the hype about Spartan for some time now, but it's only with the release of Windows 10 Technical Preview Build 10049 that we get to, officially, go hands on. This is the web browser that's replacing Internet Explorer, the default web browser in Windows 10, so it has quite a role to perform.

It's a browser that's "built for the modern web" -- whatever that means -- and it sees Microsoft trying to shed the shackles of IE and move forward. Microsoft has been talking the talking for months, but does Spartan walk the walk? No. Spartan, at the moment, appears to be a joke. Let me elaborate.

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Firefox 37 implements new HeartBeat ratings system

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Mozilla has released Firefox 37.0 FINAL for desktop, with Firefox for Android 37.0 due to follow in the coming days.

The new release debuts the Heartbeat user rating system, plus a number of incremental improvements and tweaks. Version 38 has also been made available in Beta and includes some more radical changes, including a new tabbed-based preferences UI.

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Windows 10 will support ASS, SRT and SSA subtitle formats

Microsoft releases Windows 10 SDK tools for developers

One of the main reasons why third-party media players like Media Player Classic and VLC are extremely popular among Windows users is the proper subtitle support. A lot of folks watch videos in a foreign language, and having the option to easily attach a subtitle in their mother tongue, no matter the format it's made available in, is a must-have feature for many.

It would help if Windows Media Player or the built-in Video app, the latter of which is part of Windows 8 and newer versions of the OS, would meet their needs, but, so far, that hasn't been the case. However, Microsoft wants to change that with Windows 10.

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Enterprise security places increased reliance on threat intelligence

Hidden threat

It's easier to combat security threats if you're prepared for them so it isn't perhaps surprising that security teams are increasingly turning to threat intelligence to stay ahead of the game.

A new report commissioned by endpoint protection specialist Webroot and prepared by the Ponemon Institute shows that most companies believe threat intelligence is essential for a well-rounded cybersecurity defense and has proven effective in stopping security incidents.

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Gmail for Android gets unified inbox, Google Drive now lets you manage photos

Gmail Unified Inbox Android 1

Late last year, Google introduced support for multiple email providers in Gmail for Android, welcoming users of Outlook.com, Yahoo Mail and other such services to manage all their accounts using its app.  There are plenty of folks who are not just Gmail or Google Apps users, after all. However, the app wasn't properly designed to handle all the extra accounts that users would set up.

The problem? Users had to switch between accounts every time they received new emails or wanted to reply to a message. Now, Google is finally correcting this by giving Gmail for Android a much-needed unified inbox.

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50 shades of gray -- hands on with Windows 10 Build 10049, the dullest Windows ever

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We might have waited ages for a new build of Windows 10, but a mere fortnight later and Microsoft has rolled out yet another update, again initially only to Windows Insiders on the Fast ring.

The star of this build is Project Spartan, Microsoft’s new web browser. It’s an early version, but it’s a good look at what the tech giant has been working on, and of course it comes with the new rendering engine. That’s not all that’s new in this latest OS build, however. Let’s take a more detailed look.

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Backup, clone or reformat USB keys with ImageUSB

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ImageUSB is a free Windows application for creating and writing images of USB drives. It sounds much like many other free tools, but wait -- this one is much better than you might expect.

The program comes from a trustworthy developer, PassMark Software, so you can download it with confidence. That won’t exactly take long -- it’s a very compact 463KB -- and there’s no installation required, just unzip and go.

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At $800, Xiaomi's 55-inch 4K Mi TV 2 is the best freaking smart TV you can't purchase (yet)

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Xiaomi is back in the news once again. At an event in China, the Chinese technology conglomerate today launches the much anticipated new variant of its 4K TV. Called the Mi TV 2 (yep, no Mi TV 3 yet), the new version sports a 55-inch display and costs RMB 4,999 (equivalent to $800 USD).

The world’s most valuable startup gleaned a lot of attention last week when it launched the 40-inch, full-HD variant in its Mi TV 2 lineup. The 55-inch television set is the successor to company’s last year 49-inch Mi TV 2 that retails for $640. The TV, which was until now only available in China, is expected to launch in India and other regions later this year.

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British Airways frequent flyer Executive Club accounts compromised

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Tens of thousands of British Airways frequent flyer accounts have been compromised in a cyberattack, forcing the company to freeze the accounts and issue an apology, the media have reported.

British Airways sporadically responded to tweets from concerned customers, The Register reports. In one such exchange it said:

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Why traditional email marketing techniques aren't dead [Q&A]

Email

Most of the hype around online marketing these days seems to revolve around using social media, big data and other tools to predict what the customer wants.

It would be easy to assume that outbound marketing techniques like email campaigns have become a bit last century, but Victoria Godfrey, chief marketing officer at B2B data provider Avention thinks otherwise. We spoke to her to find out why.

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Caliber: instant messaging for your LinkedIn contacts

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Most instant messaging apps market themselves on just how much fun they are, with group chats, location services, media sharing, and of course way more stickers and emojis than everyone else.

Free Android and iOS app Caliber bypasses all this and goes for a different audience entirely: it’s instant messaging for your business contacts.

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