Mark Wilson

Microsoft launches Windows 10 update history site to share update release notes

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Keeping up to date with the latest updates for Windows 10 can be something of a full time job -- particularly if you're signed up to get Insider builds. To make it easier to keep track of what changes each update brings, Microsoft has launched the Windows 10 update history site.

The site is in response to feedback from Windows 10 users who have been looking for an accessible way of learning about updates. The site provides details of exactly what the updates delivered through Windows Update. It is something of a work in progress at the moment, but one of the recent updates featured fixes a bug that meant browsing sessions in Microsoft Edge's InPrivate mode were not necessarily completely private.

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What's really behind iPhone Error 53 -- and how can you fix it?

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If you have an interest in Apple, or smartphones in general -- or even if you just follow tech news -- you can't help but have heard about the Error 53 problem that's affecting some iPhone users. In short, it seemed that people who had used non-authorized repairers to fix their home button ended up with a bricked phone after installing the latest iOS update.

This led to vocal outcries from not just upset iPhone owners, but also the tech community as a whole. Apple responded by saying that Error 53 was to "protect our customers", but what’s the real story? Is Apple really penalizing people who don’t take their iPhone to an Apple Store for repair? And, more importantly, what can you do if your iPhone has been bricked by Error 53?

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Mark Zuckerberg is 'disappointed' at India Free Basics ban and vows to fight on

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Facebook was dealt a blow today when its Free Basics program was banned in India for contravening net neutrality rules. As you would expect, Mark Zuckerberg is more than a little disappointed, but the Facebook founder says he remains "committed to keep working to break down barriers to connectivity in India and around the world".

In a somewhat bitter-sounding post on Facebook, Zuckerberg reiterated his belief that "everyone in the world should have access to the internet". But as well as hitting out at the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), he also says he wants to keep driving to connect the whole of India to the internet to "help lift people out of poverty, create millions of jobs and spread education opportunities".

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Safer Internet Day: Earn yourself an extra 2GB of Google Drive cloud storage for free

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It's hard -- although admittedly not impossible -- to have too much cloud storage space. It's possible that you were hit by the loss of Google Drive bonus storage last year, but now you have a chance to claw back an extra 2GB of space free of charge.

To celebrate, or perhaps promote, Safer Internet Day (what's that? 9 February is devoid of such a reminder in your calendar?!) Google is inviting people to perform a Security Check-up. It takes just a matter of moments, but as a reward for your time, you can bag yourself some extra space.

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Don't say Enigma Software's SpyHunter is rubbish or you just might get sued

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Technology website BleepingComputer is being sued by Enigma Software (ESG) over a negative review of its SpyHunter antimalware software. In fact, it's not really a review that has caused Enigma Software to start complaining about "false, disparaging, and defamatory statements", but a thread on its forums.

The lawsuit also suggests that BleepingComputer is "driving traffic and sales to Malwarebytes and driving traffic and sales away from ESG" (Bleeping Computer runs an affiliate program involving Malwarebytes) The timing of this is interesting, as it comes at the same time as the European Court of Human Rights ruled that website owners are not responsible for comments posted by readers.

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India bans Facebook's Free Basics for contravening net neutrality rules

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The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has ruled in favor of net neutrality laws, effectively banning Facebook's beleaguered and controversial Free Basics program. In a win for net neutrality proponents, the telecom regulator ruled against "discriminatory tariffs for data services" saying that internet access should be provided on an equal basis.

Mark Zuckerberg's dream of connecting the entire world to the internet has met with controversy ever since it was first announced because of the way it only provides access to a limited number of websites from select Facebook partners.

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Julian Assange can't be allowed to hide behind the skirts of WikiLeaks to avoid answering rape allegations

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Like Edward Snowden, Julian Assange is an incredibly divisive character. Just as Snowden is viewed by some as a hero for exposing the activities of the NSA, so Assange is viewed as a hero for exposing -- amongst other things -- the darker side of the US military through WikiLeaks. But both figures are also viewed as villains by those who believe that their whistleblowing has endangered national security.

While Snowden scampered off to Russia to avoid the US legal system, Assange took refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London. While it's certainly true that he's a man of interest for the US which ultimately seeks to prosecute him over the activities of WikiLeaks, Assange is actually holed up in the UK to escape extradition to Sweden where he faces questioning over allegations of rape. He has continually used the additional prospect of extradition to the US for WikiLeaks-related questioning as an excuse for not facing the music in Sweden. This is just about as wrong as it's possible to be.

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Now the Pirate Bay lets you stream just about anything for free

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Legalities aside, there is one problem with content made available through the likes of the Pirate Bay. Whether you use traditional torrents or magnet links, you'll (usually) need to wait for a download to complete before you can enjoy the movie, show, or album of your choice. But not anymore.

A new beta feature for the world-famous torrent site makes it possible to stream videos without the need to download them first. By integrating the Torrents-Time plugin, the Pirate Bay now includes a Stream It option for all video torrents.

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Twitter may not be dead after all -- Jack says your timeline is safe... for now

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Twitter went slightly nuts over the last couple of days. Suggestions that the chronological timeline was to be ditched in favor of one controlled by an algorithm gave birth to the #RIPTwitter hashtag. But the panic may have been for nought; Jack Dorsey wants to clear things up.

The Twitter founder took to the site to assure its users that a timeline change is not on the cards -- at least not next week. But what he says may not completely quell the fears of those who have been talking about the death of Twitter.

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European Court of Human Rights says websites are not responsible for reader comments

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In something of a landmark ruling, the European Court of Human Rights says that websites cannot be held liable for comments left by readers. The ruling comes after a Hungarian website was sued over the content of messages left by readers.

The court said that if websites were held responsible for comments, it would constitute a breach of the right to free expression. Even in the case of 'offensive and vulgar' comments, providing nothing unlawful was written -- such as hate speech -- Hungarian news site Index.hu, and others, could not be held responsible for readers' comments.

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Windows 10 phones home (A LOT) even with all reporting and telemetry disabled

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One computer user has become so disillusioned with Windows 10's spying features that he has been driven to using Linux Mint as his primary operating system. But Voat user CheesusCrust was curious to find out just how pervasive Microsoft's privacy invasion is. The results of his investigation are quite staggering.

Using a router kitted out with DD-WRT, and a copy of Windows 10 Enterprise installed in a virtual machine on his Linux laptop, he started by disabling every single one of the tracking and telemetry features found in the operating system. Eight hours later, 4,000 connection attempts to 93 different IP addresses were logged, with most of these IPs addresses being linked to Microsoft.

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Apple says it is bricking iPhones with Error 53 for security reasons

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You wouldn't expect a simple iOS update to completely kill your iPhone, but this is exactly what is happening. Users who took their handsets to a third party for repair and subsequently updated their software have run into error 53 and a bricked handset. Apple is not only aware of the problem, but says that it is intentional.

As we learned the other day, the problem seems to arise for people who have had their home key (specifically) fixed by a non-Apple-authorized repairer. Apple has now admitted that iOS detects the home key has been tinkered with, and says that Error 53 is a move to 'protect our customers' -- customers who will, presumably, think twice before upgrading to an iPhone 7.

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#RIPTwitter? What's with all the hoopla?

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There have been changes aplenty at Twitter as the company fights to remain relevant in an increasingly crowded social marketplace. There have been rumors that the famous 140-character limit could be dropped, and we're already seeing Twitter dropping the requirement to be logged into an account in order to see conversations. Just like Facebook, Twitter has also experimented with changing the order in which content appears in users' timelines, and it seems like this is something that's due to spread to everyone.

The company could be on the verge of launching a new algorithm-powered timeline that displays tweets not in reverse chronological order, but based on what it thinks you might want to see. Before the change has even been implemented, there has already been something of a backlash, with many people suggesting this could be the death of Twitter. The hashtag #RIPTwitter quickly started trending and is home to vocal opposition to the change.

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Twitter tackles terrorists in targeted takedown

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Having previously battled trolls, Twitter has now turned its attention to terrorists and their supporters. The site has closed down more than 125,000 accounts associated with terrorism since the middle of 2015, it announced in a statement.

Although a full breakdown of figures is not provided, Twitter says most of these accounts were related to ISIS. Having increased the size of its account review team, the site has reduced the time it takes to investigate accounts that are reported, and has also started to investigate 'accounts similar to those reported'.

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Mozilla kills Firefox OS 2.6 for smartphones but it lives on in smart TVs and connected devices

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Following on from the announcement that Firefox OS would no longer be developed for smartphones, Mozilla has explained the thinking behind the decision (failures on its part) and also revealed that Firefox OS will continue to live on in other devices.

The operating system is already used to power Panasonic SmartTVs, and this is set to continue. This will certainly come as good news to owners of such TVs, but Mozilla says that the OS stack will be used in a range of Connected Devices.

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