Archive for July, 2012

Games of the XXX Olympiad: July 27 – August 12, 2012

July 26, 2012

Keep Up with the 2012 Olympics with NBC’s Olympic Apps for iOS and Android

iOS/Android: The 2012 Summer Olympics in London officially start tomorrow with the opening ceremony beginning at 7:30 pm PST on NBC. If you plan to keep up with all the action while on the go, NBC has you covered with a couple of their own apps for both iOS and Android.

Developed alongside Adobe, NBC’s Olympics Live Extra app includes live streaming coverage of all events (over 3,500 hours worth), video on demand, alternate camera angles, and a section called Gold Zone, where you can watch only the gold medal events. Navigating the menus is pretty straightforward and you’re able to filter events by sport and even bookmark the sports you enjoy most. The app is completely free, but the only catch is you have to be a cable TV subscriber that gets both MSNBC and CNBC in order to reap the benefits of live streaming.

However, if you don’t have cable TV, you can use NBC’s second-tier Olympics app instead. The only thing that it’s missing is the live streaming and video on demand, but you’ll still get video highlights, news, results, schedules, and even in-depth information on Team USA.

Olympic Mobile & Tablet Apps | NBC Olympics


Get the New and Improved Office Web Apps Through SkyDrive

July 26, 2012

To go along with the recent announcements of Office 365 and Office 2013, Microsoft unveiled a new, free version of its Office Web Apps. To enable it, you just have to log in through a particular SkyDrive link.

Actually, the link might not be entirely necessary, as I’ve seen little pings and flags around SkyDrive cloud documents asking to show off the “preview.” But once you enter SkyDrive and enable the preview, it’s your default view on any documents you’re creating or editing. It has a nicely pared-down look, consistent with Office 2013, and it’s pretty good at showing Word documents in their native style and formatting. If you start needing heavy editing tools, however, you’ll see why there’s a rather significant “Open in Microsoft Word” button at the top of the toolbar.

What do you think of the Office Web Apps Preview?

Office Web Apps Preview

Apple releases OS X Mountain Lion

July 26, 2012
Apple announced that OS X Mountain Lion, the ninth major release of its desktop operating system, is available as a download from theMac App Store, available as an upgrade from Lion or Snow Leopard for $19.99.

With more than 200 new features, Mountain Lion includes iCloud integration, the all new Messages app, Notification Center, system-wide Sharing, Facebook integration, Dictation, AirPlay Mirroring and Game Center.

Mountain Lion includes:

  • iCloud integration, for easy set up of your Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Messages, Reminders and Notes, and keeping everything, including iWork documents, up to date across all your devices;
  • The all new Messages app, which replaces iChat and brings iMessage to the Mac, so you can send messages to anyone with an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or another Mac;
  • Notification Center, which streamlines the presentation of notifications and provides easy access to alerts from Mail, Calendar, Messages, Reminders, system updates and third party apps;
  • System-wide Sharing, to make it easy to share links, photos, videos and other files quickly without having to switch to another app, and you just need to sign in once to use third-party services like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Vimeo;
  • Facebook integration, so you can post photos, links and comments with locations right from your apps, automatically add your Facebook friends to your Contacts, and even update your Facebook status from within Notification Center;
  • Dictation, which allows you to dictate text anywhere you can type, whether you’re using an app from Apple or a third party developer;
  • AirPlay Mirroring, an easy way to wirelessly send an up-to-1080p secure stream of what’s on your Mac to an HDTV using Apple TV, or send audio to a receiver or speakers that use AirPlay; and
  • Game Center, which brings the popular social gaming network from iOS to the Mac so you can enjoy live, multiplayer games with friends whether they’re on a Mac, iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.

Additional features in Mountain Lion include Gatekeeper, which makes downloading software from the Internet safer; Power Nap, which automatically updates your apps and system while your Mac is asleep; and a faster Safari browser.

Firefox v.14.0.1 – July 17, 2012

July 17, 2012

What’s New:

See the complete list of bugs fixed by the new version:

Download a Firefox that speaks your language:

Microsoft Patches Zero-Day Bug & 15 Other Flaws

July 12, 2012

Microsoft today issued a security patch to fix a zero-day vulnerability in Windows that hackers have been exploiting to break into vulnerable systems. The company also addressed at least 15 other flaws in its software, and urged customers to quit using the desktop Sidebar and Gadget capabilities offered in Windows 7 andWindows Vista.

By far the most urgent of the updates is MS12-043, which fixes a critical vulnerability inMicrosoft XML Core Services that miscreants and malware alike have been using to break into vulnerable systems. Microsoft had already warned about limited, targeted attacks using this flaw, but late last month an exploit built to attack the XML bug was added to the BlackHole Exploit Kit, an automated browser exploit tool that is very popular in the criminal underground right now.

Other critical patch bundles include a fix for a dangerous flaw in the Microsoft Data Access Components (MDAC) of Windows, and an update to address a pair of vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer.

Microsoft also released a FixIt tool to help network administrators block the use of Gadgets and the Sidebar on Windows 7 and Windows Vista systems. “We’ve discovered that some Vista and Win7 gadgets don’t adhere to secure coding practices and should be regarded as causing risk to the systems on which they’re run,” Microsoft said in a blog posting, without offering much more detail about any specific findings.

Patches are available through Windows Update or via Automatic Updates. As ever, if you experience any issues in applying these patches, please drop a note in the comments below. A summary of and links to all of the patches released today is here.

Security tips to stay safe this summer

July 5, 2012

Security tips for consumers to stay safe this summer and avoid falling victim to computer fraud. During the summer, people (especially children) have more spare time on their hands for using computers and connecting to the Internet more frequently, thus increasing the risk of falling victim to malicious code.

One of the newest scams that has surfaced recently involves sending fake flight confirmation emails. The potential victim receives a fake confirmation for ‘recently purchased tickets’ with instructions on how to open an attachment to view the ticket. The file, however, is a Trojan of the Sinowal family that is designed to steal users’ confidential information.

In the summer, many people book flights online to get to their holiday destinations. Cyber-crooks are taking advantage of this situation to send a new wave of fake emails aimed at tricking users into opening the attachments and infecting their computers.

The following advice is offered to help safeguard users’ security this season:

Use caution with social networking sites: People give out too much information about their holiday plans on social networking sites, even tipping criminals off about their empty homes. Check privacy settings and avoid sharing private information on social networks.

Install parental controls: Children spend more time in front of computers during summer vacation. Installing a good parental control program on the computer will help minimize children’s vulnerability on the Internet.

If you can avoid it, never use a shared computer: If using a shared or public computer on vacation is a must, prevent identity theft by making sure your account doesn’t automatically save your password and user ID. If you suspect the computer’s security has been compromised by a virus, leave it and use another. Take care when connecting an external device to the computer, as it may become infected without your knowledge.

Take care with email: Email is one of the main virus entry points, so pay special attention to it. Do not open messages from unknown senders or click on dubious links.

Beware of public Wi-Fi networks: You could be hooking up to a network set up by hackers to steal any information that you share across the Internet. When you connect to email, social networking sites or online stores, make sure you are using a secure connection (https), so that traffic is encrypted and no one else can access the information.

Keep your computer up-to-date: Malware seeks to exploit existing security holes in systems to infect them. Make sure all necessary security patches and updates are properly installed.

Protect your computer: Make sure you have reliable, up-to-date protection installed on your computer.

Following these’ tips for staying secure, users can enjoy their summer vacations with greater peace of mind. Just as people would lock all doors and windows before going on vacation, consumers should also take great care to protect their digital worlds.