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TweakTown News Posts - Page 54

GE Link bulbs promise smart LED light bulbs at low prices

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 12:04 pm

There are plenty of LED light bulbs on the market today that allow the user to control lighting and even light color using smartphone apps. The catch is that many of those bulbs also carry a rather steep price blocking entry into the smart bulb market for some. GE has announced a new smart LED bulb series that it promises will be cheap compared to existing products.


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GE's new family of bulbs are called Link bulbs and the system does require a hub to connect the bulbs in the home. That hub will set you back $30 on its own. After buying that hub, the bulbs will cost in the area of $15 to $25 each depending on the style chosen.


A kit is available with the hub and two 60W equivalent bulbs for $50. Once connected, the app and hub allow you to schedule the lights and control brightness. It doesn't appear that the bulbs allow you to control the color of the light. Home Depot is taking pre-orders on the bulbs now and they will ship this fall.

Samsung unveils Galaxy S5 mini smartphone with 4.5-inch screen

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 11:00 am

Samsung has rolled out a new smartphone called the Galaxy S5 mini and as the name implies, this is a smaller version of the normal Galaxy S5. The S5 mini has a 4.5-inch screen, which is a bit over a half inch smaller than the 5.1-inch screen of the Galaxy S5.


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The mini does have less processor power as well using a quad-core 1.4GHz processor under the hood. The mini also has an 8MP rear camera and the 4.5-inch screen has a resolution of 1280 x 720. Other hardware specifications for the smartphone include 1.5GB of RAM and 16GB of storage.


Power for the S5 mini comes from a 2100 mAh internal battery. One glance at the specs tells you that the S5 mini is much less powerful than the normal S5 packing a 2.1 or 2.5GHz processor, 2GB of RAM, and 16MP camera. If the Galaxy S5 mini sounds like something you want, it will be available in Russia starting in early July and will expand globally later.

Google appeal in Wi-Fi snooping case rejected by Supreme Court

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 10:26 am

Google has been fighting in court for a while trying to get out of the trouble it landed in with the Wi-Fi snooping that it performed with its Street View cars several years ago. Google has lost the case in court and has been appealing trying to get a different decision, but it looks like its appeals are over. The US Supreme court has refused to hear Google's appeal on a ruling in the case.


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The refusal to hear the appeal will allow consumers to proceed with a privacy suit that stems from the snooping scandal. A lower court had previously ruled against Google saying that it may had violated a federal wiretap law when it collected payload data from Wi-Fi networks using its street view cars.


The data that Google captured with tech aboard those vehicles includes emails, passwords, and URLs that people had visited at home and in the office. The legal case around this issue began in 2010 when it was revealed that Street View cars were collecting data from Wi-Fi networks that weren't protected. Google argues that it didn't violate the wiretap law due to a clause in that law that gives an exception for networks readily accessible to the public.

2014 Samsung SSD Global Summit - The Photos

By: Chris Ramseyer | More News: Storage | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 4:12 am

2014 Samsung SSD Global Summit - Samsung is moments away from opening the doors to the 2014 Samsung SSD Global Summit conference. Paul and I just snapped some photos. We don't have a lot of time to go into the full details now, look for more detailed coverage later this evening. For now, let's run some photos!


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Continue reading '2014 Samsung SSD Global Summit - The Photos' (full post)

US companies facing DDoS attacks that prove to be very effective

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 4:12 am

Cybercriminals are finding success launching distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against companies, causing disruptions and sometimes halting organizations during business days. Forty one percent of organizations across the world were targeted, with 78 percent hit at least two or more times in the past 12 years, according to BT.


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"DDoS attacks have evolved significantly in the last few years and are now a legitimate business concern," said Mark Hughes, BT Security President, in a press statement. "They can have a damaging effect on revenues and send an organization into full crisis mode. Reputations, revenue and customer confidence are on the line following a DDoS attack. Finance, e-commerce companies and retailers in particular suffer when their websites or businesses are targeted."


DDoS cyberattacks were up 43 percent during Q4 2013, according to security company Akamai - and the problem only seems to be intensifying. Due to the increase in DDoS attacks, 78 percent of US organizations are increasingly concerned about the popular cyberattack method used by hackers.

U.S. Navy exploring 3D printing technologies for its warfare center

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: 3D | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 1:50 am

After successfully hosting its first Maker Faire, discussing 3D printing with its "Print the Fleet" workshops, the U.S. Navy is interested in learning how 3D printing technology can help. Specifically, the Navy hopes to see 3D printing help improve readiness, allow for faster manufacturing, and reduce storage and shipping costs.


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The USS Essex currently has a compact 3D printer which is being used for testing, including sailors printing parts required for daily functions. Furthermore, an increasing number of Navy labs are testing 3D printing - but it's going to be curious to see how sailors onboard ships utilize the technology.


"When you consider the cost and vulnerabilities of our existing Navy logistics and supply chains as well as the resource constraints we face, it quickly becomes clear that we have to reimagine how we do business," said Vice Adm. Phil Cullom, naval operations for fleet readiness and logistics deputy chief. "When advanced manufacturing and 3D printing becomes widely available, we envision a global network of advanced fabrication shops supported by sailors with the skills and training to identify problems and make products."

Microsoft battles against malware crime groups in Algeria, Kuwait

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 1, 2014 12:34 am

Malware linked back to cybercriminals in Algeria and Kuwait was disrupted when Microsoft named several parties in a civil suit accused of creating malicious code that infected millions of victims. The strategy is a unique new method by Microsoft, attempting to disrupt communication channels used by cybercriminals and the infected PCs they've compromised.


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The foreign nationals, Naser Al Mutairi and Mohamed Benabdellah, along with the Vitalwerks Internet Solutions domain hosting company - almost 94 percent of compromised machines used Vitalwerks servers so the criminals were able to control the machines - in a rather clever method to try to stay under the radar.


Meanwhile, Vitalwerks claims millions of Internet users have suffered disrupted service because of the legal proceedings. Microsoft didn't directly say Vitalwerks was involved in the cybercriminal activities, but said the company didn't do enough to prevent it.

Continue reading 'Microsoft battles against malware crime groups in Algeria, Kuwait' (full post)

Consumers would struggle to make it one day without their smartphones

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 30, 2014 10:53 pm

In case you needed added confirmation of how addicted we are to our smartphones, almost one in two U.S. consumers say they wouldn't last one day without their smartphones, according to a report from Bank of America.


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Furthermore, using a smartphone is more important than coffee or television, changing "the way we live our daily lives," according to Marc Warshawsky, Bank of American SVP and mobile solutions executive. Not surprisingly, millennials from the ages of 18-24 believe their mobile phones are more important (96 percent) than their toothbrush (93 percent) or deodorant (90 percent).


Banks want to utilize smartphones and mobile technologies to keep users engaged, and it's been working for Bank of America - with 31 percent of mobile BoA users logging in at least once per day, and 82 percent access their accounts at least once per week.

Companies are aware of cyberattacks, but still learn the hard way

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jun 30, 2014 9:48 pm

Companies are familiar what to do during a cybersecurity incident, and how to defend against phishing and social engineering tactics, but tend to only learn lessons the hard way. Fifty four percent of respondents to a recent survey said they were not hacked or experienced a data breach in the past 12 months, according to TrainAce, a cybersecurity training organization.


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For companies that did suffer a data breach, 70 percent found a Trojan on a PC or on theur network - and 20 percent of those hacked don't have a cybersecurity incident plan ready.


"The findings we've compiled suggest that while most companies are employing best practices when it comes to cybersecurity, there is still a way to go before adoption is universal," said Ralph Sita, TrainACE CEO and President, in a press statement. "All companies have different reasons and needs when it comes to cybersecurity, but it's troublesome to learn that many still don't have the basics in place, such as a cyber incident plan or set of updates guidelines."

Continue reading 'Companies are aware of cyberattacks, but still learn the hard way' (full post)

Google bids adieu to 10 year old early social network, Orkut

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Jun 30, 2014 9:16 pm

So long then, Orkut - Google's first social network, now ten years old, is officially closing its doors at the end of this September.


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Orkut began life in the earlier days of web 2.0, at the time competing with the likes of Myspace. It was incredibly popular in South America, and enjoyed millions of users in its heyday. Now, in a blog post, the social network is saying "tchau". Orkut "helped shape life online before people really knew what social networking was," the post read. "Over the past decade, YouTube, Blogger and Google+ have taken off, with communities springing up in every corner of the world. Because the growth of these communities has outpaced Orkut's growth, we've decided to bid Orkut farewell."


Google plans to keep investing its time in the newer, mentioned networks. But to any users still lurking around, there will be an archive of all public communities - available at the date of Orkut's death late September. Those that don't want their details to be kept online can remove Orkut permanently through their Google+ accounts - where else?

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