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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

You can go too cheap on a laptop, and this is what happens when you do

It might seem like all budget notebooks are the same, and you can pick any old one off the shelf. That’s not true, though, as a quick comparison between the Acer Aspire 3 and Aspire E 15 demonstrates.

The post You can go too cheap on a laptop, and this is what happens when you do appeared first on Digital Trends.


Source: Digital trends

The Quest to Topple Science-Stymying Academic Paywalls

Scientific publishers charge so much that even Harvard can’t afford it anymore. A new publishing infrastructure could help.
Source: Wired

A Major Hacking Spree Gets Personal for German Politicians

Hundreds of German politicians who have had their private digital lives exposed online are victims of a hacking campaign with unclear motives.
Source: Wired

This little PepsiCo snack robot is a vending machine on wheels – CNET

The Hello Goodness-branded robot rolls around with chips and iced tea, but apparently no beer.
Source: CNET

Golden Globes 2019: Nominees, start time, how to watch and more – CNET

See who’s nominated and find out how you can stream the awards show without a cable subscription.
Source: CNET

New Apple voice phishing scam looks just like a real support call

A new voice phishing scam is going after iPhone users with in a clever new way: by making calls seem like they are coming directly from Apple Support.

Brian Krebs reported today that a user, Jody Westby, got a call from Apple Support asking for her to call back. The contact information that came along with the number appeared to be Apple Inc.’s in the identity screen for the call. When she called the 866 number, however, something was clearly amiss.

KrebsOnSecurity called the number that the scam message asked Westby to contact (866-277-7794). An automated system answered and said I’d reached Apple Support, and that my expected wait time was about one minute and thirty seconds. About a minute later, a man with an Indian accent answered and inquired as to the reason for my call.

Playing the part of someone who had received the scam call, I told him I’d been alerted about a breach at Apple and that I needed to call this number. After asking me to hold for a brief moment, our call was disconnected.

No doubt this is just another scheme to separate the unwary from their personal and financial details, and to extract some kind of payment (for supposed tech support services or some such). But it is remarkable that Apple’s own devices (or AT&T, which sold her the phone) can’t tell the difference between a call from Apple and someone trying to spoof Apple.

The exploit is unique because it allows callers to masquerade as other callers essentially by polluting search results with junk information that makes one number look like the contact number for a real company. The number Westby was told to call is a known phishing source. Remember: if anyone calls you claiming that your computer is broken they are most probably lying. After all, support people will never be proactive when it comes to problems with your computers, only reactive (if that).


Source: TechCrunch

Taylor Swift’s mobile app, The Swift Life, is the latest celebrity app to shutter

Taylor Swift’s “Reputation” era, one characterized by military jackets, black sequins and snarls, is coming to a close and, apparently, that means her one-year-old mobile app is too.

The Swift Life, a gamified app developed in partnership with freemium mobile games maker Glu Mobile, announced this week that it would shut down effective February 1. Users of the app have until that date to spend any of their virtual currency, which they had to accumulate in order to purchase Taymojis and access exclusive content.

Glu is a formerly venture-backed business behind a number of celebrity-branded apps that help the A-listers find additional profit off their fan base. It’s responsible for “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood,” which recently announced it would shut down alongside all the Kardashian sisters’ mobile apps; “Britney Spears: American Dream,” “Katy Perry Pop” and “Nicki Minaj: The Empire.” Kim Kardashian’s app was reportedly the biggest success for Glu and at one point was expected to rake in more than $200 million in lifetime revenue. Other attempts by Glu to mimic Kim’s success failed, however.

Glu has already fallen on hard times, with reports indicating that a company restructure in 2017 led to the loss of at least 100 employees. Now it’s mourning the loss of two of its largest celebrity app plays, signaling what could be a dire future for the company. We reached out to Glu for comment.

There are no available Swift Life revenue figures, but its short lifespan coupled with fan complaints suggest it wasn’t the moneymaker Glu and Swift’s camp hoped for. The app was designed to provide Swift yet another avenue to intimately converse with fans, something she’s become known for in her more than 10-year career. Swift often chats directly with fans on Tumblr, views some of her 114 million Instagram followers stories and, offline, she invites select groups of fans into her home for album listening parties. An app where she could interact with and provide her biggest of fans unique material made sense.

Until all hell broke loose.

After reportedly soaring in its App Store debut, The Swift Life swiftly turned into a battleground for her politically opposing fans: “Less than 48 hours after launching, Taylor Swift’s new app has become plagued with Trump-loving trolls and homophobic comments,” Taylor Lorenz wrote for The Daily Beast in December 2017, just days after the app’s release.

What followed was an eruption of tweets and Reddit posts denouncing the app and its inability to prevent hate from spreading like wildfire across what was meant to be a wholesome, affectionate space for Swifites — on brand with Swift’s mostly squeaky clean image. It’s a wonder the app wasn’t shut down immediately.

Instead, the singer continued to earn money off the app, while some users complained an unannounced moderator was coming in and deleting certain posts. Simple fixes could have improved the user experience, and more access to Swift, something users were promised, would have bandaged the wound.

This week’s announcement cited the end of the Reputation era as the reason for the app’s shut down, but the reality is it failed to meet user expectations and prevent combative behavior.

The demise of Swift’s app, as well as Kim, Kourtney, Khloe and Kylie’s (Kendall got rid of hers long before), can only mean one thing: “We are mourning the end of the golden age of the celebrity app,” writes Vox’s Kaitlyn Tiffany.

In the age of Instagram, consumers, even Swift’s biggest fans — and she does have some very big fans — don’t need yet another app to suck up their time and money. When it comes to the Kardashian family, who have made themselves more accessible to their fans via social media and their reality television show than has ever been possible in the past, an app touting “exclusive content” seems especially lacking in credibility.

Sure, several other celebrity-promoted apps remain, but if Swift and Kim Kardashian, who have more than 230 million Instagram followers between them, can’t generate sticky users then who can?

Sorry Tom Hanks, Demi Lovato, Shakira, Chelsea Handler and other celebs looking to capitalize on their tech-enabled fans. The future of your apps isn’t bright.


Source: TechCrunch

Senators introduce bipartisan bill to address Chinese tech concerns – CNET

The legislation from Sens. Mark Warner and Marco Rubio aims to take on companies such as Huawei and ZTE.
Source: CNET

Samsung's Space monitors bring its minimalist TV aesthetic to your desk – CNET

For CES 2019, the company revamps the monitor arm for the 21st century, updates its really big HDR gaming monitor and more.
Source: CNET

BMW Individual M850i Night Sky is a one-off made with meteorites – Roadshow

BMW Individual Manufaktur is willing to go to the ends of the earth and beyond to create customized BMWs like this.
Source: CNET

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