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New uTorrent client speeds up downloads and prevents DDoS attacks

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Apps | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 6:50 pm

The UTorrent dev team released 3.4 version of the client with a promise that it would change the way uTorrent chooses peers and therefore improves the download speeds and preventing DDOS attacks.

 

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Other than the bug fixes and new features, BitTorrent's Adam Kelly explained how the new system works. He said,"If a BitTorrent client chooses poorly, or if there are malicious actors in the swarm, the connections between clients are not well distributed through the swarm, leading to a large number of hops from node to node. That slows down the ability to each client to pass data on to the next."

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Court orders ISP to reveal information of illegal movie downloaders

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 5:52 pm

The Federal Court in Canada has ordered Ontario based internet service provider 'TekSavvy Solutions' to cough out names and addresses of 2,000 subscribed who are suspected to use peer-to-peer client to down movies illegally which is owned by Voltage Pictures who made movies movies such as The Hurt Locker and Dallas Buyers Club.

 

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This is considered as a pivotal moment to catch movie pirates. As said by Voltage Pictures' Lawyer James Zibarras, the decision marks a shift from a time when BMG Canada Inc.'s attempt to track down illegal music downloaders was turned down by the court. He said,"That was heralded by many people as a kind of green light for downloading. This is the first time that case has been reconsidered by the court."

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Pandora uses music playing data to deliver political ads to you

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 5:29 pm

Online radio service Pandora recently started offering audio political ads based on user listening experience, with the company using algorithms to best determine political affiliations.

 

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The ability to somewhat accurately predict political leanings of its 73 million active monthly users is a unique offering to allow for more accurate ad placement. Election results are compared to each subscriber and their geographic location and musical preferences, and then artists are categorized on whether more popular among Democrats or Republicans.

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Google adds 'unsubscribe' button in Gmail for all users

By: Roshan Ashraf Shaikh | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 4:44 pm

Google has now provided a useful tool to get rid of those annoying subscriptions that you may or may have not signed up for, and even troubles locating the unsubscribe button in those unwanted promotional emails.

 

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From this week onwards, Google will provide a clearly marked 'Unsubscribe' link for Gmail. The link will be present on top of the header field in the emails.

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Sony to unveil its PlayStation 4 VR headset next month

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 9:24 am

We've heard about Sony's VR headset quite a few times now, but it looks like we'll see the Japanese electronics giant unveil its PlayStation 4 virtual reality headset at the 2014 Game Developers Conference next month in San Francisco.

 

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TechRadar has an "inside source" who told them that Sony's VR headset is coming along well, with the source saying: "The quality and resolution are really, really good. People will definitely be impressed with what Sony's built". Sony was expected to unveil its VR headset earlier, but the company wanted extra time on the device before it officially unveils it.

 

The source added: "Sony has deliberately taken its time to tweak and polish the headset before revealing it". Sony already has a few VR headsets, but this new device is made purely for gaming. VR gaming will be big business in the years to come, so Sony arriving on the market first with a consumer VR device will be a big bragging point for the company.

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Alcatel announces the Idol 2 mid-range smartphones series

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 7:31 am

Alcatel is launching quite the number of smartphones this week, starting with the new Idol 2 smartphone. The Alcatel Idol 2 is a 5-inch smartphone, but it is also joined by its 4.5-inch brother, the Idol 2 Mini. Each of the new smartphones will arrive with 3G support, but will be joined by an "S"-branded LTE version.

 

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The Idol 2 Mini is just 8.5mm thick, and will arrive to the market first, most likely in the first week of next month. Both smartphones will feature qHD displays, a quad-core processor clocked at 1.2GHz, Android 4.3 which is upgradeable to 4.4, NFC, an 8-megapixel rear-camera, backed up by a 2-megapixel front shooter.

 

The 3G-capable Idol 2 Mini will start at 169 euros (or $232) while the 4G version will be priced at 209 euros (or $287). The 3G model will arrive with a plastic build, while the 4G version arrives with a metal back and plastic at the top and bottom. There will be four colors on offer, too.

Continue reading 'Alcatel announces the Idol 2 mid-range smartphones series' (full post)

Samsung's new Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo smartwatches ditch Android

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 6:29 am

Mobile World Congress 2014 - Mobile World Congress 2014 kicks off in just a matter of hours, but Samsung has jumped the gun announcing two new smartwatches. The two new smartwatches don't feature the word "Galaxy" in their name, they're just known as Gear 2, and Gear 2 Neo.

 

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Samsung has opted to drop Google's mobile OS Android, in favor of Tizen, something we thought would happen. The new smartwatches don't only feature Samsung's open-source OS, but they will feature revamped hardware, too.

 

The front-facing camera has been moved from the face of the smartwatch into the strap on the body itself, an IR port is provided so that it turns the Gear 2 smartwatches into a full living room remote. As for hardware, we have a 1.63-inch 320x320 Super AMOLED display, single-core processor at 1GHz, 512MB of RAM and 4GB of on-board flash.

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Keifer Sutherland is involved with the new Mortal Kombat game

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 5:28 am

24 star and also the voice behind Snake in Metal Gear Solid 5 has told IGN that he is involved with an upcoming Mortal Kombat game. Sutherland said: "I did Mortal Kombat, and that's such a huge game, but it's so not like [MGS5]".

 

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Jack Bauer's involvement with a new Mortal Kombat game is interesting, but the TV and movie star has not confirmed exactly what character he is playing in the game. What should we expect? Which character do you think he'd voice best?

Heroes TV show to come back next year in a 13-episode miniseries

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: HT & Movies | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 4:44 am

It's hard to think that it has been over four years since Heroes ended, but NBC has announced that it is bringing back the superhero TV show next year for a 13-episode miniseries run.

 

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Heroes creator Tim Kring is back, but there's currently no details on what to expect in terms of plot. NBC Entertainment president, Jennifer Salke, said in a statement: "Shows with that kind of resonance don't come around often, and we thought it was time for another installment. Until we get closer to air in 2015, the show will be appropriately shrouded in secrecy, but we won't rule out the possibility of some of the show's original cast members popping back in".

WhatsApp's lack of encryption is the kind that the "NSA would love"

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Apps | Posted: Feb 23, 2014 4:27 am

While Facebook might be acquiring WhatsApp for a hefty $16 billion, it looks like the messaging application company might not be too good with encrypting its messages. With over 450 million active users, this becomes quite the user base for government spies, hackers, and more.

 

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WhatsApp's use of secure sockets layer (SSL) encryption is meant to support version 2 of the protocol, which is capable of being hacked into, and monitored by a third-party. The messages being flown back and forth between WhatsApp users can even be manipulated. WhatsApp has failed to use a technique known as certificate pinning, which is designed to block attacks using forged certificates to bypass Web encryption.

 

Pinning allows an app to work only when communicating with a server using a specific certificate, and because this certificate is hardwired into the app, it will simply reject connections with any other attempts of a false certificate. Security consultancy firm Praetorian, has chimed in, with Paul Jauregui writing: "This is the kind of stuff the NSA would love. It basically allows them-or an attacker-to man-in-the-middle the connection and then downgrade the encryption so they can break it and sniff the traffic. These security issues put WhatsApp user information and communications at risk".

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