Geekly Update - 09 October 2019
Experts say everyone should use two-factor authentication, but is that enough to secure your online accounts? Did Microsoft just announce that Windows is no longer important? Should you be worried about newly-discovered malware that can intercept encrypted Web traffic? And what's in those 2000-year-old scrolls? Get answers in today's Geekly Update -- it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!
The AskBobRankin Geekly Update
Here's a fun read about things you might think are obsolete, but really aren't. Pagers, faxes, cassette tapes, and other gadgets still have a place in modern society.
Do people really want foldable phones and laptops? Samsung and Microsoft are betting you will. At an event on October 2nd, Microsoft has introduced two new foldable devices, the Surface Neo and the Surface Duo, directly competing with Samsung's Galaxy Fold phone. Both will go on sale in about a year.
If you have one of the older Roku streaming devices, you might lose access to Netflix on December 1st. Netflix has not been terribly precise about which models are on the naughty list, but here's how you can tell. If your Netflix app does NOT have the (very annoying) "autoplay next" feature, you'll need to upgrade.
For over a year, Google has been teasing a feature of Google Photos that can colorize old black and white pictures. Now it appears the Colorize feature is available in beta. Colorize uses artificial intelligence to identify elements in your black and white photos, and apply the appropriate shades of color.
Security experts urge the use of "two-factor authentication" to prevent unauthorized access even if your username and password are compromised. Now the FBI is warning that might not be enough, because attackers can trick a user into disclosing a multi-factor authentication code. The FBI advises the addition of “biometrics or behavioral information such as time of day, geolocation, or IP address” to login protcols.
After paying a ransom of about $700, a German ransomware victim decided to hack them back. By hacking into the attacker's command and control server, Tobias Frömel was able to generate decryption keys for almost 3000 other victims and notify them.
The Qnano Glove is a wearable glove designed to treat hand osteoarthritis, as an alternative to physical therapy and medications.
https://www.foxnews.com/science/mystery-scrolls-julius-caesars-read Researchers are hoping to use an X-ray beam to virtually unwrap and read the contents of 2000-year-old scrolls that were buried and charred during the eruption of Vesuvius. The Herculaneum Scrolls, purportedly from the family of Julius Caesar, cannot be handled, but it is hoped that x-ray beams and special software can detect the carbon ink on them.
A headline at The Verge says "MICROSOFT DOESN’T THINK WINDOWS IS IMPORTANT ANYMORE." Not exactly true, but we seem to be heading in that direction. “The operating system is no longer the most important layer for us,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said recently. Instead, the company will focus on Microsoft Graph, a collection of programming interfaces that connects devices to Microsoft’s cloud services. Rough translation, "We'll make our money by selling subscriptions to cloud services, instead of one-time software purchases."
Kaspersky researchers say that newly-discovered Reductor malware "compromises encrypted web communications in an impressive way," enabling hackers to spy on encrypted web traffic without being detected. Poisoned software downloaded from "warez" (pirated software) sites is the problem, they say. To prevent the problem, "Only install what you need, and only get your software directly from the vendor, developer or official market store."
Remember the Essential Phone? I wrote about it back in 2017, but apparently it never gained much traction. Now Andy Rubin, inventor of the Android operating system and CEO of Essential Products, has unveiled a new handset with a radical design. It's long, slender, comes in bright colors, and will feature a new user interface to accommodate the "radically different form factor."
The Nokia 2720 Flip isn't a smartphone. Sort of. The new flip phone has a tiny 2.8-inch screen and an old-school T9 keyboard. But it can do WhatsApp, email and Google Maps.
Your thoughts on these topics are welcome. Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 9 Oct 2019
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 09 October 2019 (Posted: 9 Oct 2019)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved