The Man Who Wrote Those Password Rules Has a New Tip: N3v$r M1^d!

2017.08.08 01

The man who wrote the book on password management has a confession to make: He blew it.

Back in 2003, as a midlevel manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Bill Burr was the author of “NIST Special Publication 800-63. Appendix A.” The 8-page primer advised people to protect their accounts by inventing awkward new words rife with obscure characters, capital letters and numbers—and to change them regularly.

The problem is the advice ended up largely incorrect, Mr. Burr says. Change your password every 90 days? Most people make minor changes that are easy to guess, he laments. Changing Pa55word!1 to Pa55word!2 doesn’t keep the hackers at bay.

The Man Who Wrote Those Password Rules Has a New Tip: N3v$r M1^d!

How to stream your video collection to any device

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As great as Netflix is, movies and shows don’t stick around on the service forever. As licensing deals renew or expire, Netflix loses old videos and gains new ones—which means that, on any given day, you might look up your favorite TV show only to find it’s gone.

For a more reliable option, you could buy your favorite digital content from portals like iTunes or Google Play. But there is another solution: Set up your own version of Netflix. Simply store the videos you own on your home computer, and from there, you can stream that content to other devices around the house.

In proper technical parlance, you’re actually turning your computer into a server, something that “serves up” content for other devices, or “clients.” A client might be anything from your phone to the PlayStation 4 connected to your living room TV.

A few years ago, you pretty much needed a degree in IT to get everything connected. Today, the Windows and Mac operating systems, as well as third-party apps, make it relatively easy to set up your own streaming service from the comfort of home.

How to stream your video collection to any device

Microsoft, Qualcomm Tuck Windows 10 Into ARM Devices

2016-12-28-06

Microsoft on Wednesday announced the compatibility of Windows 10 and native Windows apps with ARM-based processors, including Qualcomm’s Snapdragon, which currently powers a large percentage of Android devices.

One of the highlights at this year’s Windows Hardware Engineering Community (WinHEC) event in Shenzhen, China, the new partnership will make it possible for Windows applications, peripherals and enterprise solutions to run on new mobile, power efficient and always-connected cellular PCs.

Through the collaboration, the companies aim to encourage hardware partners to develop Qualcomm Snapdragon-powered Window 10 devices that run x86 Win32 and universal Windows apps. In addition to Microsoft’s own productivity applications, such as Microsoft Office, they could include third-party programs such as Adobe Photoshop, as well as Windows games, which are developed by numerous companies.

The applications would be the same as those meant to run on a desktop or laptop, but they would be fully compatible with cellular PCs — meaning that mobile users no longer would have to sacrifice functionality or features.

Microsoft, Qualcomm Tuck Windows 10 Into ARM Devices

Microsoft and Intel’s Project Evo Ups the PC Game

2016-12-28-03

Microsoft and Intel on Wednesday announced Project Evo, their highly anticipated collaboration to create the next generation of personal computers. The project aims to expand on new advances in artificial intelligence, mixed reality, advanced security and gaming.

Terry Myerson, executive vice president of the Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft, unveiled some of Project Evo’s ambitious plans at the Windows Hardware Engineering Community (WinHEC) event in Shenzhen, China.

Through the collaboration, the companies will push the boundaries of a personal computer’s capabilities in the near future, he said. Technologies under development include far-field speech and wake-on-voice enabled through Cortana, biometrics and voice authentication in Windows Hello, spacial audio, and HDR support for gaming.

Project Evo — particularly its expanded use of Cortana — invites comparisons to the digital assistant tools found in Amazon Echo and Google Home, standalone speakers that use Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant respectively. Though their capabilities differ, each uses voice communications to interact with the automated home.

However, Project Evo seems geared toward making the personal computer into a much more sophisticated device — one that can be accessed and operated in ways never before seen.

Microsoft and Intel’s Project Evo Ups the PC Game

All the New Features in macOS Sierra

2016-09-21-13

Apple’s just released macOS Sierra, and while it’s a minor update, it does include Siri, a universal clipboard, and a handful of other new features. Let’s take a quick look at all the new stuff.

  • Siri Lands on Your Mac
  • Siri Gives Notification Center More Purpose
  • Universal Copy-Paste Between Your Mac and iPhone, Unlock Your Mac with Your Apple Watch
  • iCloud Drive Expands to Include Your Desktop and Documents
  • Photos on Mac Gets All the New Features of Photos on iOS
  • Optimized Storage Clears Up Disc Space
  • Apple Music Gets a Little Easier to Use
  • Nearly Every App Gets Tabs
  • Safari Adds Picture-in-Picture Mode

All the New Features in macOS Sierra

Dark Sky, the Up-to-the-Minute Weather App, Now Works In Your Browser

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Web: Dark Sky is one of the coolest weather apps, providing minute-by-minute weather tracking. Up until now, it’s only been available on iOS or Android phones, but now everyone can finally use it on the web.

The website lets you explore the weather around you in a bit more detail than you can find on your phone. You can look ahead at your forecast to see tons of details about the weather in the near future like temperature, humidity, wind, pressure, and more. The company has also added some interesting interactive weather maps to the web version, so you can explore the temperature, precipitation radar, and even the ozone across the world.

Dark Sky, the Up-to-the-Minute Weather App, Now Works In Your Browser

Google fixes two serious Android security flaws

2016-09-21-02

Google’s mobile security team has definitely been busy cleaning house this week. The company has released an Android update that closes two security holes that could pose a major threat if intruders found a way to exploit them. The first was only designed for “research purposes” and would only have been malicious if modified, Google tells Ars Technica, but it wouldn’t have been hard to detect or weaponize.

The other flaw behaved similarly to the well-known Stagefright exploit, letting an attacker send an altered JPEG image through Gmail or Google Talk to hijack your phone. The issue, as SentinelOne researcher Tim Strazzere explains to Threatpost, is that it’s both easy to find and capitalize on this vulnerability.

There’s more. Security company Check Point also revealed that Google Play had been hosting apps containing two forms of malware (CallJam and DressCode). CallJam both steered phones to websites that made bogus ad revenue and, if you granted permission, would call paid phone numbers. DressCode would also visit shady ad sources, but it could also compromise local networks. Google has since removed the offending apps, but the infection rate may have been high when users downloaded the software hundreds of thousands (or in a few cases, millions) of times.

Google fixes two serious Android security flaws

This USB Stick Will Instantly Destroy Your Computer

2016-09-21-01

The USB Killer exploits a vulnerability manufacturers haven’t bothered fixing.

Whatever you do, don’t mistake this USB stick for the one holding your Powerpoint.

When plugged into any device, The USB Killer, released earlier this summer, rapidly draws power from the hardware, then returns that power in an overloading burst. According to the makers, this “instantly and permanently disables unprotected hardware.” Potential targets include not just PCs, but TVs, copy machines—anything with a USB port.

The device, marketed as a testing tool for administrators looking to protect their systems, sells for 49.95 Euros, or around $56 dollars. Demand has apparently been high, with the manufacturers reporting backorders.

Despite the obvious nefarious potential for the tool, its public release at least appears well-intentioned. The USB Killer was developed by a security hardware team based in Hong Kong, who first publicized the vulnerability it targets over a year ago, and developed an early prototype.

But the team was deeply frustrated to see manufacturers take little action on closing the vulnerability. According to the team, Apple is to date the only manufacturer that protects their devices against this so-called USB surge attack.

This USB Stick Will Instantly Destroy Your Computer

Google’s Hangouts Extension Operates More Like Its Own App Now

2016-09-10-02

Chrome: Google has released an update to its Hangouts extension that gives it a bit of a new look alongside some new functionality.

The new version of the extension puts the design in line with the Android and iOS apps. It also makes it so the extension works more like a standalone app. This means it’ll work when it’s closed, and you can pin Hangouts to your Dock or taskbar. If you used the now-defunct Hangouts app, the extension seems like a solid replacement. You can snag the update now.

Google’s Hangouts Extension Operates More Like Its Own App Now

Cub Linux Is a Worthy Chromixium Offspring

2016-09-10-01Cub Linux, an improved rebranding of the innovative Chromixium Linux distro, combines the look, feel and functionality of Google’s Chrome OS with traditional Linux performance.

Cub Linux provides a complete Chromebook experience on the hardware of your choice. The innovation is quite impressive. Cub Linux also runs software from the Ubuntu distro ecosystem.

When I reviewed the Linux hybrid Ubuntu-based Chromixium distribution in May of last year, I liked it so much that I continued using it on some of my aging hardware. I found that it ran super-fast on my new gear, and I now run the new Cub Linux version on that same gear.

Chromixium’s success apparently hit too close to the real deal for Google. Google’s Trademark Enforcement Team politely invited sole developer Rich Jack to change the product’s name to avoid suggesting an affiliation with the Chrome project. So the former Chromixium community rebranded the distro as “Cub” Linux — Chromixium + Ubuntu = Cub.

Cub Linux 1.0, released on July 1, is a replacement for the former Chromixium 1.0. It does not disappoint. In fact, performance-wise, it picks up where Chromixium left off. It has some new features and system updates. Cub has expanded into a 64-bit version.

Cub Linux Is a Worthy Chromixium Offspring