Technology News

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  • Facebook users’ phone numbers are for sale through a Telegram bot
    by Mitchell Clark on January 26, 2021 at 2:06 am

    Illustration by Alex Castro / The VergeSomeone has gotten their hands on a database full of Facebook users’ phone numbers, and is now selling that data using a Telegram bot, according to a report by Motherboard. The security researcher who found this vulnerability, Alon Gal, says that the person who runs the bot claims to have the information of 533 million users, which came from a Facebook vulnerability that was patched in 2019. With many databases, some amount of technical skill is required to find any useful data. And there often has to be an interaction between the person with the database and the person trying to get information out of it, as the database’s “owner” isn’t going to just give someone else all that valuable data. Making a Telegram bot, however, solves both... Continue reading…

  • Rejoice! Amazon’s new app logo isn’t another icon in a white box
    by Jay Peters on January 26, 2021 at 1:39 am

    Image: Apple’s App StoreIt looks like Amazon is rolling a new app icon on iOS, and unlike countless other recent app redesigns, it isn’t just a logo dropped inside a white background! Rejoice! The new icon cleverly takes cues from perhaps Amazon’s most recognizable “product” — its shipping boxes and their bright blue tape. Here it is — in the app’s listing on Apple’s UK App Store. (There are a few other reports of others seeing the icon on their devices as well.) Whoever worked on this new app design, which will be instantly recognizable on your home screen, deserves a raise. Continue reading…

  • Warning Signal: the messaging app’s new features are causing internal turmoil
    by Casey Newton on January 26, 2021 at 1:00 am

    Illustration by Alex Castro / The VergeThe fast-growing encrypted messaging app is making itself increasingly vulnerable to abuse. Current and former employees are sounding the alarm. Continue reading…

  • Grindr fined $11.7 million for illegally sharing private user information with advertisers
    by Jay Peters on January 26, 2021 at 12:57 am

    Grindr will be fined 100 million Norwegian kroner, or about $11.7 million, by the Norwegian Data Protection Authority for illegally sharing private information about Grindr users to advertisers, according to The New York Times. Last January, the Norwegian Consumer Council filed three complaints against Grindr for sharing personal information, including users’ locations and information about the device they were using, with advertisers. (One of those advertisers was MoPub, Twitter’s mobile ads company.) Associating that information with an individual could potentially indicate that person’s sexual orientation without their consent, and now, the Norwegian Data Protection Authority is taking action against Grindr for the practice. Grindr... Continue reading…

  • Amnesty International calls for a ban on facial recognition in New York City
    by Russell Brandom on January 26, 2021 at 12:01 am

    Illustration by Alex Castro / The VergeAmnesty International has launched a new campaign against facial recognition titled Ban The Scan — and is launching with a demand for New York City to halt police and government use of the technology. Amnesty argues facial recognition is incompatible with basic privacy rights, and will exacerbate structural racism in policing tactics. “New Yorkers should be able to go out about their daily lives without being tracked by facial recognition,” said Matt Mahmoudi, an AI and human rights researcher with Amnesty. “Other major cities across the US have already banned facial recognition, and New York must do the same.” “The NYPD has used facial recognition to track tens of thousands of New Yorkers” Amnesty is joined in the New York portion of... Continue reading…

  • How Do Delivery Robots Work? How They Safely Deliver Your Packages
    by Gavin Phillips on August 19, 2020 at 11:00 am

    A distant future involving robotic package deliveries is now very much a reality. Advances in robotics, GPS tracking, automation, and navigation now mean you might not find a delivery person at your door with your package. You might find a delivery robot instead. With semi-autonomous robots beginning to enter the world, here’s a look at how delivery robots work. What Is a Delivery Robot? A delivery robot is an automated robot that brings your delivery directly to your door. These robots aren’t walking and talking humanoids; rather, these robots are cute delivery containers on six wheels, resembling giant (but friendly-looking!)...Read the full article: How Do Delivery Robots Work? How They Safely Deliver Your Packages

  • Step Up Your Pomodoro Productivity With These 6 Methods
    by Lee Nathan on August 19, 2020 at 10:00 am

    If you’ve ever used the Pomodoro Technique, you’ve probably noticed an increase in productivity and focus. But most people aren’t aware that there’s a lot more you can do with it. The way that it breaks up your day can lead to some powerful benefits. Let’s take a look at some less traditional methods to apply the Pomodoro Technique to. If you’re not familiar with it, check out the basics of Pomodoro first. 1. Goal Setting Have you ever finished a day and felt like you didn’t get enough done? Sometimes you might have actually had a productive day, but...Read the full article: Step Up Your Pomodoro Productivity With These 6 Methods

  • Portable, Powerful Solar Panel: Maxoak SP120 Review
    by James Bruce on August 18, 2020 at 12:30 pm

    Our verdict of the Maxoak SP120:Weighing less than 7lbs, the Maxoak SP120 outputs a serious amount of power in a convenient and portable package. You're paying a premium for the portability though, so consider if you actually need to carry it around or whether a static panel could do the job. 1010Most portable solar panels are tiny and really only designed to trickle charge a smartphone. If you have a large portable battery pack then finding a suitably powerful and genuinely portable solar panel can be tricky. The Maxoak SP120 is both affordable, portable, and with 120W output, powerful enough...Read the full article: Portable, Powerful Solar Panel: Maxoak SP120 Review

  • How to Access Region Blocked Videos Without a VPN
    by Christian Cawley on August 18, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    Wherever you are in the world there is always a reason to want to bypass region blocking. For example, internet users outside the US might want to access Netflix or Hulu; those in the US might want the UK version of BBC iPlayer. To combat this, VPNs are popular—but they’re not the best solution. Here’s how to watch geo-blocked videos without VPN software. Why VPNs Aren’t Great for Bypassing Region Blocks When you connect to a VPN (Virtual Private Network) your internet traffic is forwarded through the VPN server. So, if you’re in the UK and you connect to a...Read the full article: How to Access Region Blocked Videos Without a VPN

  • 11 Basic Encryption Terms Everyone Should Know by Now
    by Gavin Phillips on August 18, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    Chances are that you’re familiar with the word encryption. You’ve probably heard about how important it is, as well as how vital it is for keeping so much of our hyper-networked lives secure. Use WhatsApp? You’re using encryption. Log into online banking? Same again. Have to ask the barista for a Wi-Fi code? That’s because you’re connecting to a network using encryption—the password is the key. But even though we use encryption in our day-to-day lives, most encryption terminology remains mysterious. Here’s a list of 11 essential encryption terms you need to understand. 1. Plaintext Let’s start with the most...Read the full article: 11 Basic Encryption Terms Everyone Should Know by Now

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  • What's in the latest Edge update? Password monitor and vertical tabs
    by Gregg Keizer on January 26, 2021 at 1:47 am

    Microsoft's Edge 88, last week released, boasts major improvements to its password manager and debuted new tab features, including vertical tabs — something Chrome has yet to offer.The Redmond, Wash. company also patched at least 24 security vulnerabilities, the most serious marked as "High," the second level in a four-step ranking system. Google's Chrome 88, which like Edge was built on the open-source Chromium project, included fixes for 36 flaws when it was released Jan. 19.(Note: Starting Jan. 21, the day Microsoft delivered Edge 88, it began "...releasing the Chrome CVEs that are included in the new releases of Microsoft Edge (Chromium-based) directly in the Security Update Guide." For more information on what that meant, steer to this explanation.)To read this article in full, please click here

  • Office 365: A guide to the updates
    by Preston Gralla on January 25, 2021 at 11:04 pm

    Office 365 and Microsoft 365 subscribers always have the latest version of Microsoft Office — currently Office 2019. They also get more frequent software updates than those who have purchased Office 2019 without a subscription, which means subscribers have access to the latest features, security patches and bug fixes. But it can be hard to keep track of the changes in each update and know when they’re available. We’re doing this for you, so you don’t have to.Following are summaries of the updates to Office 365/Microsoft 365 for Windows, with the latest releases shown first. We’ll add info about new updates as they’re rolled out.Note: This story covers updates released to regular Office 365/Microsoft 365 for Windows subscribers. If you’re a member of Microsoft’s Office Insider preview program or want to get a sneak peek at upcoming features, see the company’s “Release notes for Office for Windows Desktop (Beta builds)” page.To read this article in full, please click here

  • Microsoft to integrate Teams with SAP as partnership expands
    by Matthew Finnegan on January 25, 2021 at 4:37 pm

    Microsoft has unveiled plans to integrate Teams with a range of SAP business applications, enabling workers to share information more easily without leaving the collaboration platform.The two companies announced that the German enterprise software vendor’s S/4HANA enterprise resource planning (ERP) application, used by many of the world’s largest organizations, will connect into Microsoft’s collaboration platform. There are also plans for integrations with SAP’s SuccessFactors HR application and SAP Customer Experience, a customer relationship management (CRM) platform.The announcement was part of a broader deal that will see SAP S/4HANA hosted on Microsoft’s Azure cloud infrastructure.To read this article in full, please click here

  • Why smart homes are the future of the smart enterprise
    by Jonny Evans on January 25, 2021 at 3:11 pm

    The first HomeKit-compatible Thread accessories are beginning to appear, and while that’s good news for consumers, it should also be good news for enterprise users.What the Thread? Originally designed by Nest, Samsung and ARM, Thread is an IP-based connectivity standard for smart devices. It’s a low-power mesh technology protocol that uses existing standards, such as IPv6, BLE, and others. At its simplest, it means devices from different manufacturers should be able to work together, securely, responsively, and with minimal cost to battery life.To read this article in full, please click here

  • Decoding Microsoft Defender’s hidden settings
    by Susan Bradley on January 25, 2021 at 2:45 pm

    Ask someone what antivirus software they use and you’ll probably get a near-religious argument about which one they have installed. Antivirus choices are often about what we trust — or don’t — on our operating system. I’ve seen some Windows users indicate they would rather have a third-party vendor watch over and protect their systems. Others, like me, view antivirus software as less important these days; it matters more that your antivirus vendor can handle windows updating properly and won’t cause issues.Still others rely on Microsoft Defender. It's been around in one form or another since Windows XP.To read this article in full, please click here

  • Citizen DJ - A Free Tool for Remixing Music and Spoken Audio
    by (Richard Byrne) on January 25, 2021 at 5:20 pm

    Citizen DJ is a free tool for remixing and creating new songs from audio files that are in the public domain. The tool was developed by Brian Foo who is an Innovator in Residence at the Library of...Read the whole entry at »             Related StoriesHow to Edit Your Videos by Typing in Type StudioTips to Help Busy Teachers Get and Stay FitG Suite Audio, Accessibility, and Timelines - The Week in Review 

  • How to Edit Your Videos by Typing in Type Studio
    by (Richard Byrne) on January 25, 2021 at 10:47 am

    On Friday morning I published a blog post about a new video editing tool called Type Studio. At the end of the blog post I mentioned that I'd be publishing a tutorial video about Type Studio on my...Read the whole entry at »             Related StoriesType Studio - A Truly Unique Way to Edit Your VideosMy Big List of Padlet TutorialsHow to Create a Multimedia Timeline With Padlet 

  • Tips to Help Busy Teachers Get and Stay Fit
    by (Richard Byrne) on January 25, 2021 at 10:37 am

    This article originally appeared on one of my other blogs, December of 2018 I was the biggest I’ve ever been in my life. The nice suits that I’d purchased just a year before...Read the whole entry at »             Related StoriesA Simple Way to Break a Bad HabitG Suite Audio, Accessibility, and Timelines - The Week in ReviewMy Big List of Padlet Tutorials 

  • G Suite Audio, Accessibility, and Timelines - The Week in Review
    by (Richard Byrne) on January 23, 2021 at 10:51 am

    Good morning from Maine where we play outside even if it's cold and snowy. Sometimes that means doing traditional snow activities like skiing and sledding while other times it just means knocking some...Read the whole entry at »             Related StoriesTime, Space, and Exercise - The Week in ReviewAnnotations, Document Cameras, and Exercise - The Week in ReviewBreakouts, Outages, and Cool Jobs - The Week in Review 

  • My Big List of Padlet Tutorials
    by (Richard Byrne) on January 23, 2021 at 10:00 am

    On Thursday morning I published a video about how to use Padlet to create multimedia timelines. As I mentioned in Thursday's blog post I've been using Padlet for more than a decade. In fact, when I...Read the whole entry at »             Related StoriesHow to Create a Multimedia Timeline With PadletReadWorks Adds an Offline Mode for StudentsSix Good Tools for Making Multimedia Timelines 

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  • The future of social networks might be audio
    by Tanya Basu on January 25, 2021 at 6:14 pm

    Every morning, as Nandita Mohan sifts through her emails, her college pals are in her ear—recounting their day, reminiscing, reflecting on what it’s like to have graduated in the throes of a pandemic. Mohan, a 23-year-old software programmer in the Bay Area, isn’t on the phone, nor is she listening to an especially personal podcast;…

  • The Green Future Index
    by Alli Chase on January 25, 2021 at 2:19 pm
  • Building a healthier internet: Lessons from fighting covid-19 misinformation
    by Gideon Lichfield on January 25, 2021 at 1:03 pm

    Online misinformation and political polarization have hampered the efforts of public health officials to stop the spread of covid-19. Are there better ways to counter the falsehoods and get more reliable information out there? The MIT Media Lab’s HealthPulse project recently tried to answer that question. It ran a trial in Atlanta, a city with…

  • Tech is having a reckoning. Tech investors? Not so much.
    by Eileen Guo on January 24, 2021 at 1:00 pm

    On January 10, Charlie O’Donnell, a startup investor who runs Brooklyn Bridge Ventures, published a blog post that he hoped would inspire self-reflection among his peers in the industry. Provocatively titled Seed Investments in Insurrection, his argument was that venture capitalists needed to wrestle with their impact on democracy.  “It’s kind of hard to make…

  • We could know soon whether vaccines work against a scary new coronavirus variant
    by Antonio Regalado on January 23, 2021 at 10:15 am

    Salim Abdool Karim was at a cricket match on December 26, Boxing Day, when he made the mistake of looking at his email. He had received a new report and the news wasn’t good. A heavily mutated coronavirus spotted in South Africa appeared to allow the virus to bind more tightly, and more easily, to…

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  • President Joe Biden commits to replacing entire federal fleet with electric vehicles
    by Kirsten Korosec on January 26, 2021 at 12:30 am

    President Joe Biden said Monday the U.S. government would replace the entire federal fleet of cars, trucks and SUVs with electric vehicles manufactured in the United States, a commitment tied to a broader campaign promise to create 1 million new jobs in the American auto industry and supply chains. The commitment, if it bears out,

  • Facebook News launches in the UK, the first international market for its curated news portal
    by Ingrid Lunden on January 26, 2021 at 12:04 am

    As the United Kingdom prepares to sharpen its focus on how it regulates big tech companies, Facebook is taking a big step up in the role it plays in presenting media to the U.K. public, and into how it works with the country’s media industry. Today it is launching Facebook News in the U.K., Facebook’s

  • Debunk, don’t ‘prebunk,’ and other psychology lessons for social media moderation
    by Devin Coldewey on January 25, 2021 at 11:53 pm

    If social networks and other platforms are to get a handle on disinformation, it’s not enough to know what it is — you have to know how people react to it. Researchers at MIT and Cornell have some surprising but subtle findings that may affect how Twitter and Facebook should go about treating this problematic

  • Daily Crunch: Twitter unveils Birdwatch
    by Anthony Ha on January 25, 2021 at 11:14 pm

    Twitter pilots a new tool to fight disinformation, Apple brings celebrity-guided walks to the Apple Watch and Clubhouses raises funding. This is your Daily Crunch for January 25, 2021. The big story: Twitter unveils Birdwatch Twitter launched a new product today that it says will offer “a community-based approach to misinformation.” With Birdwatch, users will

  • Smart lock maker Latch teams with real estate firm to go public via SPAC
    by Brian Heater on January 25, 2021 at 10:59 pm

    This week, Latch becomes the latest company to join the SPAC parade. Founded in 2014, the New York-based company came out of stealth two years later, launching a smart lock system. Though, like many companies primarily known for hardware solutions, Latch says it’s more, offering a connected security software platform for owners of apartment buildings.