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TweakTown News Posts - Page 54

Underground markets for stolen data as organized as real businesses

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 8:46 pm

Criminals that compromise networks and steal large amounts of information are finding easier and more organized methods to quickly get rid of the data. Data dumps are one of the most popular products found on these underground forums, where buyers and sellers communicate in an organized fashion similar to an official business from the legitimate world.


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Many cybercriminal groups are trying to steal bulk data, such as the Target and eBay breach, looking to offload the information as quickly as possible. Using organized underground hacker forums, many based in Eastern Europe and China, they are able to sell and trade the data.


"When we think about the markets themselves they are organized in a unique fashion," said Tom Hold, Michigan State University associated professor specializing in cybercrime. "At the individual level, we're talking about a process where we're seeing peers and colleagues; at the formal forum level, we're seeing a more formal organization that takes place."

Gartner: Chromebook sales will hit 5.2 million units by end of 2014

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 7:35 pm

Consumers are expected to control more than half of the estimated 5.2 million Chromebook units sold in 2014, according to research firm Gartner. The devices will see strong growth in the education sector - and while still not largely appealing to technology enthusiasts - the low-cost devices are building a stronger following.


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Samsung led the Chromebook market in 2013 with 1.3 million units sold, and is expected to have 64.9 percent of the market by the end of 2014. Meanwhile, Acer has 21.4 percent, relying on the cost-effective ARM-based CPUs, while Hewlett-Packard and Lenovo have 6.8 and 6.7 percent control of the market, respectively.


" Competition in the Chromebook market is intensifying as more vendors launch Chromebooks, with eight models in the market in 2014,"said Isabelle Durand, Gartner Principal Analyst, in a press statement. " Now that the PC market is no longer growing strongly, vendors are searching for new business opportunities. They launched Chromebooks to revive interest in sub-$300 portable PCs once the netbook bubble had burst."

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issues warning about bitcoins

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 6:26 pm

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently issued an advisory against the use of bitcoins and cryptocurrencies, saying there are far too many uncertainties. As such, bitcoins are popular targets for hackers and may lead to higher costs than cash and credit cards because of exchange rates and other considerations.


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Furthermore, there is an increase in the amount of bitcoin-related fraud, and bitcoin wallet companies are struggling to stay secure from attack.


"Virtual currencies are not backed by any government or central bank, and at this point consumers are stepping into the Wild West when they engage them in the market," said Richard Cordray, CFPB Director, in a statement.

Continue reading 'Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issues warning about bitcoins' (full post)

Microsoft launches Snipp3t iOS app for celebrity news

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Apps | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 5:00 pm

Microsoft has launched a new iOS app that aims at people who are into knowing what is going on with their favorite celebrities at any time. The app is called Snipp3t and it launched recently. The app lets users follow celebrities to get news in a timeline style format.


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It sounds sort of like Facebook for celebs, only communications are a one-way street it seems. The news from the people followed via the app is offered in a timeline-style format with news specifically from those you follow mixed with more general trending posts.


Each of the events that are trending will have multiple media reports, images, tweets, and related videos. The app does connect via Facebook so users can sign in and share stories to the social network. The app is available now in the US and only on iOS with no word on more countries or Android/Windows Phone support.

Amazon stops offering pre-orders for some Disney films

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 4:13 pm

Amazon is one of the most likely places that many movie fans go to pre-order a DVD or Blu-ray before the film launches. Amazon is so popular that it has used its popularity for pre-orders in contract disputes with companies in the past. Amazon has recently stopped taking pre-orders on some Disney films as part of a contract dispute with the company.


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Pre-orders for some popular coming Disney films like Muppets Most Wanted, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Million Dollar Arm, and Maleficent are unavailable in physical form. Amazon didn't want to cut off its own nose, so digital versions of these films via Amazon Instant video are still available.


In the past Amazon has used this same tactic with Warner Home Video and pulled pre-orders for The Lego Movie, Transcendence, and 300: Rise of an Empire off the site. The etail giant has also done something similar with publisher Hachette. It's unclear exactly what part of the contract between the two has led to the dispute.

Microsoft rolls out new Nokia 130 feature phone

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 3:00 pm

Microsoft announced that it would be stopping production of some of the devices that Nokia had previously offered to the low-end of the market. Some of those discontinued devices include the Nokia X, Asha, and S60. After announcing that it was ending production of those devices, it is a bit surprising to hear that Microsoft is rolling out a new Nokia feature phone.


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The feature phone is called the Nokia 130 and it will sell for the equivalent of $25 in Europe. The device is aimed at first time buyers around the world and runs the Nokia Series 30 software. Microsoft notes that this is the most affordable phone with a video and music player out there.



The device has a FM tuner, MP3 player, and can play movies from a video card. It lacks any support for internet access. Battery life is 46 hours for audio and 16 hours for movies. It has a 1.8-inch screen and is good for 13 hours of talk. The feature phone can be purchased in dual or single SIM versions.

Sproutling baby monitor is the next gen baby monitoring system

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 2:00 pm

For a very long time the only baby monitoring system available for parents were the sort that are like walkie talkies to allow mom and dad to hear baby. Some of those have video, but they are all very similar. A new type of baby monitor has been unveiled called Sproutling. It's a smart wearable device that attaches to the baby's leg.


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The monitor is connected to a soft and hypoallergenic strap that can be machine-washed. The system is intended to be worn by kids from 0-2 years of age. When worn, the Sproutling system can monitor the temperature of the child, heart rate, and motion. It charges via a charging dish that can monitor temperature in the room and ambient noise.


An app runs on the parent's smartphone and offers an easy to use system for showing how the child is doing at any time. A line that fills in around a circle on the app shows how long your baby should sleep. One cool aspect of the device is that parents can monitor baby while they aren't home. That will make it easier to leave junior with a babysitter for the first time.

SeaWorld scientific breakthrough could help save endangered animals

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 1:03 pm

When a certain type of animal is near extinction, scientists often try to prevent them from going extinct by capturing them and putting the animals into a controlled environment where they can be protected. The problem with this is that some animals won't reproduce when they are in a closed environment meaning that no little animals can be born.


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SeaWorld in San Diego, California has made a scientific breakthrough that could help prevent animals from going extinct and allow baby's to be born in captivity. The breakthrough came with the first baby penguin to be born using artificial insemination. The penguin is currently only 12 weeks old and is the first penguin of any species to be reproduced this way. There is no word on if this technique might be used on other types of animals at this time.


"Artificial insemination and semen preservation allows us to maximize the genetic diversity of these populations, and that means that they remain healthy and stable into the future," said one of the researchers at the SeaWorld Reproductive Research Center, Justine O'Brien.

Continue reading 'SeaWorld scientific breakthrough could help save endangered animals' (full post)

Acer unveils the first NVIDIA Tegra K1-powered 13.3-inch Chromebook

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Laptops | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 12:32 pm

Acer has just announced the new Chromebook 13, which is the industry's first Chromebook that is powered by NVIDIA's very capable Tegra K1 mobile processor. It's also the first Chromebook the company has made with a 13.3-inch display.


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The company makes its new Chromebook 13 available with two display options, with the default 13.3-inch display with a resolution of 1366x768, but for those who crave more pixels, there's an option that crams a 1920x1080 resolution onto the 13.3-inch display. Acer's Chromebook 13 does have a star, with that star being the Tegra K1 processor, which features a 192-core GPU. This means that people will be able to have a super-fast device, with great battery life, with the ability to play some games, too.


Acer's new Chromebook 13 is both thin and light, at just 0.71 inches thick, and only 3.31 pounds. The Acer Chromebook 13 is completely fanless, so users will enjoy a near silent system. Acer has provided 802.11ac Wi-Fi connectivity, with the 2x2 MIMO antennae providing plenty of bandwidth for users. There a re also two USB 3.0 ports, and an HDMI port for some video output. We also have a 720p front-facing webcam, two built-in stereo speakers and a microphone.

Continue reading 'Acer unveils the first NVIDIA Tegra K1-powered 13.3-inch Chromebook' (full post)

Follow the ISEE-3 spacecraft using Google Chrome

By: Shane McGlaun | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Aug 11, 2014 12:06 pm

If you are familiar with the ISEE-3 spacecraft we have talked about a few times around here, you might like this. Google has announced that it has launched a new Chrome Experiment that is called "A spacecraft for All" that allows you to follow the incredible odyssey of the ISEE-3 using Chrome interactive WebGL graphics and video.


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ISEE-3 is a spacecraft that launched in 1978 with the original mission for studying the sun; it was retasked after launch to study a comet. A group of amateur scientists established contact with the satellite to get it back on its original mission, but the spacecraft thrusters failed to get the craft back into the correct orbit. The spacecraft did recently fly past the moon for the first time in decades.


"In a new Chrome Experiment called A Spacecraft for All, you can follow the unlikely odyssey of the ISEE-3 using Chrome's interactive WebGL graphics and video. You can re-live its story, read its re-activated data instruments, learn about its current position and trajectory - and explore space along the way. It's all designed to make space science simple, fun and accessible enough for anyone eager to learn - whether you're a PhD or grade school student", says Suzanne Chambers, executive producer and space cadet, Creative Lab New York.

Continue reading 'Follow the ISEE-3 spacecraft using Google Chrome' (full post)

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