Latest Technology News

Best Windows 8 apps this week (Halloween Edition)

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One-hundred and five in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps and games released for Windows 8 in the last seven days.

If you have browsed the new app and games listing this week you may have stumbled upon several irregularities again.

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Mobile devices make sales work more complicated

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We're frequently being told that the use of mobile devices makes our work lives easier, but it seems that a sizable percentage of people don't share that view.

Mobile sales solution company Seismic has released the results of its Salesforce Spotlight survey showing the complex relationship between business users and mobile technology.

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Understanding the cloud

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How many of you really understand the cloud? If you were tasked with explaining "the cloud" to a child could you manage it?

A recent discussion with top industry professionals and cloud thought leaders revealed that, for cloud solution providers, education was the biggest hurdle in cloud service adoption. Thankfully at a SAGE hosted round table, we dissected exactly what the cloud is, what it does, and how it can benefit you.

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Getting the basics of network security right

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With every new breach, network security hits the news, yet many people and companies still don’t get the basics right.

UK-based wireless network specialist Exigent Networks has produced an infographic that looks at the importance of network security and offers tips and expert advice.

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Samsung's new Galaxy A5, A3 smartphones boast very thin metal designs

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Samsung is slowly moving away from its oft-maligned, all-plastic smartphone designs of the past, in an attempt to convince consumers that it too can make premium-looking and feeling devices. The first smartphone to reveal what the future holds was Galaxy Alpha, announced just a few months ago. Then Galaxy Note 4 came along, stepping things up even further in the high-end segment.

And now we see how Samsung's vision will impact its less expensive Galaxy devices, as the company just took the wraps off Galaxy A5 and Galaxy A3 today, two mid-range to low-end smartphones featuring "refined full metal unibody designs" that happen to be very, very thin (for whatever reason): 6.7 and 6.9 mm, respectively.

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Frightening facts about email

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There are days when I get absolutely swamped with email -- my work and personal inboxes are frequently filled to bursting -- and I’m not alone in struggling with the never ending deluge of demanding messages.

Unroll.me, a service which helps users keep their inboxes under control, has put together a Halloween-themed infographic detailing some of the most frightening facts about email. Did you know, for example, that the average person in the US, spends four hours a day reading, composing and replying to messages?

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O&O MediaRecovery 10 now repairs corrupt data

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Berlin-based developer O&O Software GmbH has announced the release of O&O MediaRecovery 10, its media file recovery package for Windows Vista and later.

The most interesting addition appears to be the ability "to repair corrupt data prior to recovery". We’ve yet to test that -- and it’s going to be hard to benchmark anyway -- but If you’ve lost files due to hard drive corruption then it may significantly increase your chance of recovering something usable.

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Tesco Hudl 2: A fantastic value-for-money family tablet [Review]

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Following on from the success of Tesco's first generation budget tablet, it was only a matter of time until its successor was released.

Tesco sold 35,000 units of the Hudl in the first few days after it was launched last year and ended up shifting over 750,000, placing this endeavor firmly into the 'success' category for the supermarket giant. The Hudl 2 was recently released and we were given the chance to take it for a test spin to find out if Tesco has got another bargain success story on its shelves.

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Microsoft enables animated GIF search on Bing

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While some people find animated GIFs to be tacky and silly, I find them fun. Sure, many people use the images to flood social media with memes, but they also serve as a great way to show a short animation using a small file size. I often use them in things like PowerPoint presentations, as they jazz it up a bit and keep things exciting.

Searching for the perfect animated GIF can be problematic, as most images are not named as such, and unless the search engine gives an option, they may be mixed in with non-animated images too. Today, Bing gets even better, with the all-new option to filter image searches by animated GIF.

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Apple's Tim Cook is gay -- the fact it needs to be announced shows what’s wrong in tech

Apple's Tim Cook is gay -- the fact it needs to be announced shows what’s wrong in tech

The sexuality of people in the public often comes in for scrutiny. Whether we're talking about Michael Stipe coming out at the same time as REM released Monster, Morrissey using Autobiography to give a beautifully tender glimpse into the loves of his life, Ellen DeGeneres revealing her sexual preferences to Oprah Winfrey, or any one of countless other celebrities who chooses to make their sexuality public, where those in the limelight fit onto the sexual spectrum has long been -- and will undoubtedly continue to be -- of endless interest to people.

Writing in Bloomberg Businessweek, Apple CEO Tim Cook, entirely unprompted, has said that he is gay. For many people this will come as no surprise, for most it will be of no consequence, some will take exception to it. But what's interesting is that, in 2014, a man (or woman, for that matter) proclaiming their sexuality, is news. Tim Cook is currently the top trending topic on Twitter.

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Choose a cloud vendor that meets your needs

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There is little doubt that cloud will play an increasingly important role as more and more organizations adopt cloud based strategies to underpin their IT infrastructures. Indeed, cloud hosting offers a wide variety of advantages to companies with the expertise to take advantage of it. Applications can be rolled out faster, resources can be rented rather than purchased and infrastructure can be right-sized to support monthly and seasonal peaks.

However, a global survey commissioned by iland in April 2014 and undertaken by analyst firm Enterprise Management Associates (EMA), highlighted that there are also plenty of challenges when moving to a new cloud based infrastructure. In fact, 91 percent of those surveyed experienced at least one unexpected challenge when moving to the cloud with pricing, performance, scalability and location all topping the list of issues.

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Microsoft gives developers new opportunities with Apps for Outlook.com

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At the Inbox Love event in Mountain View, CA, Microsoft revealed the latest way for developers to bring extra functionality to the user. Starting next year, Outlook.com will support third-party apps, known -- uninspiringly -- as Apps for Outlook.com. Just a couple of days ago, Microsoft launched new APIs and SDKs to give developers new options for working with Office 365, and the latest announcement caters for development in the cloud.

Although Apps for Outlook.com will not officially launch until next year, Microsoft is giving developers the chance to start creating apps for the Outlook Web App. Those with a penchant for coding are invited to come up with new, exciting, and productivity-enhancing ways for users to interact with Outlook.com.

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Apple and Google are in a fierce battle for your car -- which will win the war?

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When I was a younger man, it was all the rage to replace the stock stereo and speakers in your car with better, third-party options. This enabled you to have more features and increased volume. If you did not have something like an Alpine or JVC deck, you and you car were lame. However, as time marched on, car manufacturers slowly began to improve the stock offerings, and, today, many people are content with the factory audio.

Two tech companies are looking to shake-up the car audio industry -- Apple and Google. Yes, the smartphone wars are advancing from your homes and pockets to your automobiles. Google has Android Auto, while Apple has CarPlay. Even though Android has handily become the dominant force in smartphones, according to a new study, the war for your car is still either company's to win.

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IBM and Twitter join forces to improve enterprise decision making

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Twitter provides a unique window into public thinking and that can be useful for businesses, not only to see what people are saying about them but also to get an insight into market trends.

In order to help enterprises understand their customers and markets, IBM and Twitter have announced a partnership that will allow Twitter data to be used in IBM's cloud-based analytics platforms.

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What's your password backup plan?

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After news broke earlier this month that hackers had gotten their hands on nearly 7 million Dropbox login credentials, the familiar media chorus of password safety tips soon followed. You likely saw the headlines: "How to Change Your Dropbox Password". "It’s Time to Enable Two-Step Authentication on Everything". "Never Ever Reuse Your Passwords".

It’s not that good password hygiene isn’t important. Enabling two-factor authentication, not using the same passwords for multiple sites, changing passwords every couple of months -- these are all aspects of a smart and savvy approach to protecting the files and data that you store online. But they’re not foolproof. As hackers grow increasingly sophisticated, even users following all the "rules" may see their login credentials compromised as part of an attack. Additionally, for companies whose employees use consumer-facing platforms, enforcing password safety rules can sometimes be a challenge. Whether it’s a result of hacker expertise or human error, when passwords fail, companies must make sure they have a backup plan in place.

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