Skype is virtually everywhere. There are native Skype clients for almost all major platforms, from the PC to mobile devices to connected TVs. But what about the Web? After all, it too is an apps platform, and a powerful one at that. Even though a browser-based version of Skype doesn’t exist at the moment, recent job postings by Microsoft have revealed that an effort to remedy this situation is already underway.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued its final report on protecting consumer privacy as the agency continues to call on companies to adopt best privacy practices and give American consumers greater control over the collection and use of their personal data. FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz said many companies have already adopted the agency's final recommendations and is confident consumers will have an easy to use and effective Do Not Track option by the end of the year.
For those of us with pets, the animal is nearly as much a part of the family as any human. Losing that pet—whether it runs away, becomes lost, or is stolen—can be as tragic as losing any other member of the family.
Implanting a microchip in your pet might help you recover it, but only if the animal shows up at a facility—such as the pound or the Humane Society—that’s equipped with a scanner. Snaptracs, a division of the mobile-technology behemoth Qualcomm—promises a much better solution: A $100 GPS device that attaches to the pet’s collar, so you can instantly locate your pet anywhere on the planet (there’s also a $8 per-month subscription fee after the first month). You can add up to nine additional pets to the subscription plan for $1 per month, plus the cost of each Tagg tracker.
The typical Maximum PC reader is unlikely to break a sweat while installing Windows, but that’s not to say that it’s a walk in the park for everyone out there. As acknowledged by the Windows engineering team in its most recent Building Windows 8 blog post, there are still those who find the whole process fairly “complex.” But they will be happy to know that Microsoft has promised a simpler and much more streamlined setup experience with Windows 8. Details after the jump.
YouTube has rolled out a number of new features, including 2D-to-3D video conversion (beta) and the ability to upload videos longer than 15 minutes. The world’s most popular online video site announced these new features on its official blog Wednesday. Hit the jump for more.
Google has made its Gmail for mobile product a bit more productive with the addition of a number of useful features. First on the list of additions is multiple account log-in, which gives you the ability to sign into multiple accounts and then switch between them with the utmost ease. Also, now you can not only create an automatic reply from within mobile Gmail when going on a vacation, but also set a custom signature for all messages sent from a mobile device.
Cynics say that the world runs on money, but money wouldn’t run as smoothly on the World Wide Web if it wasn’t for SSL/TLS. It’s the go-to encryption protocol for a lot of the Internet, and it’s supported by every major browser and many of the top websites around. But how secure is it? A pair of security researchers plan on demonstrating a serious TLS security flaw at the Ekoparty security conference later this week, and they plan on doing it with a bang: by decrypting a Paypal authentication cookie.
All eyes have been on Microsoft ever since its BUILD conference got underway in Anaheim, California on Tuesday. While Redmond is using the new event primarily to acquaint developers with Windows 8, it’s also giving just about everyone else a glimpse of the operating system’s future in the process. Talking about the future, there seems to be an emerging consensus around the tech world that it’s going to be pretty bleak for plugins like Flash and Silverlight.
China's been catching a lot of grief lately for ruthlessly culling scores of websites from the Internet, but as it turns out, Google may have been unintentionally doing it's part, too. Yesterday, James Breckenridge, the director of operations at UK Web Media, reported an exploit in Google's Webmaster Tools that allowed anybody to remove any website from Google's search results. And, as everybody knows, if you're not on Google, you might as well not even be on the Internet.
Large companies like Google and Microsoft have wide-ranging business interests, and consequently run the risk of spreading themselves too thin. While the cornucopia of resources at their disposal is a great insurance policy against this risk, it’s always wise to have more “wood behind fewer arrows,” as Google CEO Larry Page put it during the company’s last quarterly earning call. The company has decided to sacrifice Google Labs on the altar of better product prioritization.