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Bridget Miller

Bridget Miller

iPhone 8, Nintendo Switch ... there are lots of reasons to be excited 2017 promises to be a massive year in tech. From seismic console releases to 10-year anniversaries of iconic products to the fate of certain categories finally being decided, the New Year holds a ton of promise, excitement and nerves, depending on where you stand. Here’s a look at 10 things in tech to look forward to in 2017, in no particular order. Plus, we want to hear from you! Drop us a line in the comments section about what you’re most excited to see in the coming year.

1. iPhone 8

Though its name is still up for debate - will it be the iPhone 7S or iPhone 8? - whatever Apple announces come September, it promises to be big. This is the 10th anniversary of the iPhone after all, and to let the opportunity to do something special slip by would be a shame. Apple, always one for spectacle, probably won’t disappoint. All signs point to overhauls of the iPhone’s design, specs and features, including a curved AMOLED display, no home buttons or bezels, a sloped glass back, possible AR powers and wireless charging. That’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to rumored changes for the iPhone in its double-digit year, and we can’t wait to see what Apple has in store.

2. Nintendo Switch

A poll of the TechRadar offices for this list turned up the Nintendo Switch again and again as one of the things - if not the thing - we’re most looking forward to in 2017. The Switch marks Nintendo’s first console since the Wii U and its first handheld since the New Nintendo 3DS. Confused? You see, that’s what makes the Switch possibly one of the most revolutionary consoles ever: it’s a hybrid gaming machine that lets you literally switch (hehe) from playing it as a traditional console in your living room to a handheld you take on the go. Though leaked specs point to the Switch losing a considerable amount of power in handheld mode, this is still a revolution for Nintendo and could rocket it back to the top of the gaming world, especially if its price comes in at the $249 (£200/around AU$330) mark we expect it to. The best news about the Nintendo Switch? We don’t have to wait long to get our mitts on it - the Switch is due out in March.

3. Surface Pro 5

Riding a wave of solid releases and Apple miscues, we’re turning to Microsoft to deliver even more with the fifth edition of the Surface Pro tablet. We’re not asking much from the Surface Pro 5 - just better battery life, a bigger and crisper screen (4K, anyone?) and USB-C. In other words, Microsoft can stand to improve its slate in the New Year, and we’re looking forward to seeing whether it can do just that. Not only would this mean a better product for customers to buy, it would also put even more pressure on Apple and other tablet and laptop makers to step up their game. Just like the iPhone 8, Surface Pro is hitting a milestone this year, and Microsoft could leave an indelible impression on 2017 by making one hell of a good slate. Look for the Surface Pro 5 in the spring.

4. Samsung’s bounce back and the Galaxy S8

Look, this was a bad year for Samsung. Despite the stellar Galaxy S7 and even better Galaxy S7 Edge, Samsung’s 2016 was marred by the debacle of the Galaxy Note 7. To borrow a quote from American banking history, Samsung is still too big to fail, but the twice-recalled Note 7 is a huge stain on its reputation, and one it will need to recover from in 2017. The good news is that the page could start to turn with the Galaxy S8. Expected to be unveiled at February’s MWC, both versions of the S8 may feature a curved display, while the larger one could finally push the boundaries to 4K. The phone’s design might only hold refinements - there’s not much to improve on from the S7 - but other areas of advancement include the camera and processing power. And a “beast mode” trademark points to Samsung taking its mobiles up a notch in 2017, though hopefully safely. That’s not to say anything of the Galaxy Note 8, which if released Samsung will undoubtedly look to redeem itself even further with, nor Gear VR. Samsung already revealed it as big plans on the virtual and augmented reality fronts, and may even have a demo of the AR tech it’s working on ready for MWC. Now that sounds promising.

5. New, less expensive VR headsets

If 2016 was the year virtual reality (VR) came into its own, then 2017 will be the year prices come down. Leading the charge are a new set of Windows 10 VR headsets from the likes of Acer, Asus, Dell, HP and Lenovo due out next year. These “mixed reality head-mounted displays” will start at $299 (about £245, AU$295), significantly cheaper than the $600 (£499, AU$859) - $799 (£689, €899) range of the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. Though not as powerful as their higher-end counterparts, this new wave of headsets won’t require as powerful a PC, lowering the bar to entry even further. And with the aforementioned Samsung Gear VR ($99/about £80 or AU$130) and Google Daydream View ($79/£69/about AU$104) already driving the price of mobile VR down, this could be the year solid yet less expensive headsets become accessible to everyone.

6. Better, richer, more varied VR content

Makers of VR headsets are well aware that, right now, their machines are viewed as expensive gaming devices. Yes, the games are good and getting better, but the next big thing in VR centers around other kinds of content. We’re talking movies, TV shows, graphic novels, comics, sports and more. A wide-range of compelling experiences stands to come to the fore in 2017 as more publishers, developers, film makers, journalists and content creators get their hands on VR and discover new ways of telling stories. This revolution is already under way - Qualcomm and Power Rangers are showing off a VR experience tied to the spring film at CES 2017, and the NBA now offers a live weekly game presented in VR via its League Pass service. In 2017, better, richer, and more varied VR content is bound to take off. Let’s just say, we’ve got our headsets at the ready.

7. The fate of wearables

2017 is going to be a turning point for wearables. Coming off a difficult 2016, where sales plummeted, top hardware makers shied away from releasing new devices and Pebble products went the way of the dodo, it’s easy to take a bleak view of the sector. However, there is hope. As our Cameron Faulkner put forth, now is the time for wearable manufacturers “to cut the excess, and focus in on delivering more polished, accurate and ambitious products to market.” There’s still plenty of untapped potential in the space, and if wearable warriors can strike the balance between fashion and functionality while offering consumers devices they can’t live without, this could be the year that redefines smartwatches and fitness trackers for good. Android Wear 2.0 is leading the way in early 2017 (with the help of two flagship smartwatches confirmed by Google), and we're excited to see if wearables can land on their feet. Er, wrists.

8. The continued surge of smarthome products

This was the year some of the biggest names in tech made plays for our homes. Google Home and Amazon Echo smart speakers exploded onto the scene, but if you think that’s the plateau for smart home innovation, think again. Microsoft has already said it plans to bring its virtual assistant Cortana to Internet-of-Things connected devices in the New Year, including fridges, other kitchen appliances and thermostats. If it has a screen, chances are Cortana will find its way to it. And word is Apple is planning a smart speaker, too. This wouldn't surprise us in the least given the tech giant's penchant for waiting out the first wave of new product categories, then releasing a version of its own. The rumored Apple speaker is said to have emotion-sensing powers, which is equal parts creepy and cool. If Apple is looking to make a bang at the iPhone's 10th birthday party, a super-smart home speaker could help the cause. Admittedly, none of these innovations will be as cool as Mark Zuckerberg’s Morgan Freeman-voiced home AI, but then again, what could be?

9. Microsoft Project Scorpio

Microsoft released an excellent console this year in the Xbox One S, but Project Scorpio stands to surpass it during next year's holidays, and then some. Project Scorpio - probably not the name it will release under - may redefine what consoles are capable of, and it's already got us licking our chops. That's thanks to promised gaming at native resolutions of up to 4K, HDR support and high-end VR capabilities. Sweetening the sounds of Scorpio even more is its possible price. Xbox head Phil Spencer said Microsoft wants to keep the ultra-powerful machine at a console price point and not take it to the level of PCs. That's good news for gamers. We'll have to wait until later in the year for Project Scorpio, but we suggest circling 'late 2017' in your calendars now.

10. Lots more augmented reality

One of the biggest stories of 2016 was the insane popularity of Pokémon Go, a mobile game that used augmented reality (AR) to bring the pocket monsters to life in the real world. Heading into 2017. don't expect AR to fade quietly into the sunset, even if Go's novelty has worn off. After seeing the success of Pokémon Go, look for more game and app makers to tap into AR to deliver another layer of immersion to their creations. And with the game making the leap to Apple Watch, wearables are the next home for mixed reality experiences. AR is also settling right in with other gadgets as well. The incredibly fun Lenovo Phab 2 Pro, the first phone equipped with Google's Tango AR tech, was released this year. More Tango handsets, including smaller devices, are due out in 2017. Microsoft has in many ways led the AR charge, namely with its HoloLens viewer and Windows Holographic OS, which the company opened up to all manufacturers this year. We should hear plenty more on Microsoft's AR vision, including a potentially lower price for HoloLens, during Build 2017 in May. Finally, with Tim Cook indicating Apple's interests lie in augmented over virtual reality and a mystery product due from Magic Leap at some point, AR looks poised to ride the wave of its 2016 success well into the New Year and beyond.

Author: Michelle Fitzsimmons
Source: http://www.techradar.com/news/tech-in-2017-10-big-things-to-look-forward-to-in-the-new-year

Wednesday, 28 December 2016 11:22

People Search Engines: The Top 6 on the Web

Six People Search Engines You Can Use to Find Anyone

If you need to do a little bit of sleuthing about someone, the Web can be a fantastic resource. Track down an address or a phone number, find a long-lost school friend, or simply verify information with this list of the best six people search engines on the Web. All of these search engines are hyper-focused on finding only people-related information. Note: at the time of this writing, all the information in these resources are free. Read Should I Pay To Find People Online? for more information about whether you should pay to find someone online.

1 Pipl

Pipl is a people search engine that scours the Invisible Web for information; basically, what that means is that you're going to get more than just the usual search engine results for whatever name you might be searching for. Pipl searches across social networking services, search engines, databases, etc. to find tidbits you might not usually find on a rudimentary search using a more generalized search engine. One interesting thing that sets Pipl apart; they offer special services for non-profits at a steep discount in order to create more ways for these organizations to service their clients.

2 Wink

Wink searches across what you would find using a regular search engine as well as across social communities, online profiles, etc. You can also use Wink to manage your online presence by creating a Wink profile. You can "claim" and add various places where you might be active online, and manage them all in one convenient place. If you're looking for small tidbits of information across many different sources, Wink is a good choice to continue to put the clues together about whatever you might be looking for.

3 Facebook

As one of the world's largest social networks with hundreds of millions of people on this platform on a daily basis, it makes sense to use Facebook as an incredibly useful tool to find people online. You can use Facebook to search for people you went to high school and college with, as well as work colleagues, friends from elementary school, and non-profit organizations.

Facebook is also great for finding people in specific geographic locations living in your local area that you might not know about, as well as any kind of association, club, or group. While many people keep their Facebook profiles private (meaning that information is only visible to those in their immediate circles of friends and family), many people do not, which gives anyone who wants to find it immediate access to whatever they may be putting online.

4 PeekYou

PeekYou adds an interesting twist to the world of free people search engines; it allows you to search for usernames across a variety of social networking communities. For instance: say you would like to learn more about the person who uses the handle "I-Love-Kittens"; you can use PeekYou to see what else they might be doing on the Web under that username (related: there's an astonishing amount of information you can dig up on someone using only their username. Read How to Track Someone Using Only a Username for more information).

5 LinkedIn

You can use LinkedIn to search through professional networks; you can also add your profile to network with other people with similar interests. By viewing other LinkedIn users' profiles, you can pick up quite a bit of interesting information: where they work, who they work with, their former positions, current or former supervisors, any kind of recommendations they might have received, and much more. Depending on privacy settings, you might not be able to see everything that someone on LinkedIn has provided in their profile; in addition, don't forget that if you are a registered user on LinkedIn, the fact that you looked at someone's profile will be made known to them.

6 Zabasearch

Zabasearch is a free people search engine that scours freely accessible public information and records. Everything found at Zabasearch is culled from public domain information, such as databases, court records, and phone directories.

 

Author: Wendy Boswell
Source: https://www.lifewire.com/search-engines-that-top-the-web-3482269

 

The United States government has started asking a select number of foreign travelers about their social media accounts.

The news came on Thursday via Politico and was confirmed to Mashable by a spokesperson for Customs and Border Protection (CBP) after the new procedure reportedly began earlier in the week. 

The process dovetails with what has been expected for months and has been slammed by privacy advocates.

Here's what we know about the basics of the program. 

Whose information is the agency collecting?

CBP is asking for social media info from anyone traveling to the U.S. through the Visa Waiver Program, which means they'd be able to travel about the country for 90 days of business or pleasure without a visa.

The social media request is a part of the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) form, which travelers looking for a visa waiver have to fill out before they get to the U.S. The form is used to assess "law enforcement or security risk," according to the CBP's website. 

Travelers from 38 countries are eligible for a visa waiver, including those from the United Kingdom, Belgium, France and Hungary. 

What kind of information are they looking for?

 

 

The form reportedly asks for account names on prominent social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIn, as well as networks many people don't think much about, such as Github and Google+.

Is it mandatory?

No one has to fill out their social media information to get into the country, and CBP has reportedly said it won't bar anyone from the U.S. just because that person didn't want to give their Twitter handle to the government.

Privacy advocates have decried the policy, since many travelers are likely to fill it out just in case.

That said, privacy advocates have decried the policy, since many travelers are likely to fill it out just in case. A number of groups including the ACLU signed an open letter in October warning of the forthcoming changes.

"Many of these travelers are likely to have business associates, family, and friends in the U.S., and many of them will communicate with their contacts in the U.S. over social media.

This data collection could therefore vacuum up a significant amount of data about Americans’ associations, beliefs, religious and political leanings, and more, chilling First Amendment freedoms."

Why do they want social media information?

The U.S. has long tried to spot radicals and radical sympathizers online, especially anyone affiliated with the Islamic State (ISIS). 

ISIS has long had a prolific and disparate social media presence, especially on Twitter, which they've used to spread messages and recruit those who might be hundreds or thousands of miles away from fighting in Syria and Iraq. 

Initially, government officials wanted ISIS sympathizers to keep tweeting, because agencies were able to gather bits of information from those tweets. Then, however, the government got tired of how many ISIS members and sympathizers there were on Twitter and other platforms, so they ramped up pressure on those social networks to shut down such accounts. 

 

 

For the government, this is the next step in working out which potential travelers to the U.S. have "connections" to ISIS. Of course, it's unclear what language the CBP would find alarming, and whether their alarm bells would be warranted. 

How long will they hold onto the information?

Assuming the social media information will be used just like the rest of the information on the ESTA form travelers have to fill out for a visa waiver, the Department of Homeland Security will keep it readily available for up to three years after it's been filled out. Then the information is "archived for 12 years," but still accessible to law enforcement and national security agencies.

Can they share the social media information with others?

Homeland security and the CBP can share your social accounts with "appropriate federal, state, local, tribal and foreign governmental agencies or multilateral governmental organizations responsible for investigating or prosecuting the violations of, or for enforcing or implementing, a statute, rule, regulation, order or license, or where DHS believes information would assist enforcement of civil or criminal laws," according to the CBP website. 

In other words, assuming the social information is treated like all the other information they collect form those with a visa waiver, homeland security could potentially share it with any law enforcement agency on the planet. They just have to "believe" the information might be of use in solving some type of legal violation

So once you type out your Twitter handle and send in the application, that information is hardly yours. 

BONUS: Pushing the Boundaries: Immigration and Esports

 

Author: COLIN DAILEDA
Source: http://mashable.com/2016/12/23/us-government-social-media-travelers/?utm_cid=mash-prod-nav-sub-st#mBjkEomtpmqO

Whether you do SEO for a living or consider yourself a newbie, most people involved in search engine marketing know that there are two ways to go about it.

White hat and black hat.

White hat SEOs are the Jedi. We have tons of midi-chlorians in our bloodstreams and work for the forces of good in the universe.

This means promoting high-value content, engaging in deep keyword research to win in SERPS, and in general, promoting our websites or the websites of our clients using the methods that follow Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

Black hat SEOs are the Sith. They are afraid that doing high-quality work to boost rankings takes too much time, so they take shortcuts that aren’t exactly laid out in Google’s best practices.

And we all know that fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering…

sad dog

Some of these black hat techniques can be attractive to people who are new in the SEO space! Ranking well in search engines takes a lot of time and effort, and finding ways to hack the system is understandably appealing for those new to search engine marketing.

When I was starting out, I used a few of the techniques detailed below and guess what? I got no results! My websites were all indexed correctly, but I wasn’t able to get anything to rank for meaningful searches until I learned the ways of the White Hat Jedis.

So what happens when you try to implement black hat SEO strategies? You may make slow progress for some time, but you’ll eventually get hit with a Google Penalty.

If you’ve already been hit with a penalty, it’s time to read The Definitive Guide to Recovering From a Manual Search Penalty.

What Are Google Penalties?

Penguin

The original Penguin update was launched in 2012. Google relies heavily on links from one domain to another to determine a website’s authority. The penguin update crawled the web for any website attempting to game the number of links pointing to their site.

Over 10% of search results were affected, some of which were removed from Google search results entirely.

Since then, website owners and professional SEOs have been keeping a pulse on Google’s search algorithm updates.

Panda

The Panda update is a bit different. Its goal is to filter search results to prevent “low quality” sites’ content from ranking. While the definition of “low quality” is subjective, Google has their own course on creating valuable content, so it’s easy to see what they consider to be high-quality when it comes to digital content.

What Do Google’s Penalties Do?

If your website gets hit with either a Penguin or Panda penalty from Google, the results are the same: the loss of your current ranking position in search results and a huge dip in your organic traffic. All because of a few black hat methods you used to try to promote your website.

And if your website relies heavily on organic traffic from Google, a penalty could result in a downward spiral that could put you down for good.

Black Hat Strategies to Avoid

While there are many strategies black hat SEOs use to try to game Google and rank well in search results, these are the most highly used and the most likely to get your website penalized by Google.

Links

Getting in trouble with the internal links in your website or external websites linking to you could result in a penguin penalty. Here’s what you want to avoid when it comes to links.

Buying Links

Why most people do it: Arguably the most important ranking factor is the quality and quantity of links back to a website. It’s logical to think that buying links from websites with high Domain Authorities is the easiest way to get backlinks without putting in a lot of work.

Why you shouldn’t do it: Buying links is against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. It’s an easy way to get on Google’s bad side and receive an automatic or manual penalty. It’s unlikely you’ll get away with buying links without leaving a trail. Google tracks links that are likely purchased and those which are likely natural, so gaming Google is more difficult than you’d think.

Reciprocal Links

Why most people do it: When Website A offers to link to Website B, Website A might think it’s a good idea to ask Website B to link back to them as well. That way, they get a bit of link juice in return.

Why you shouldn’t do it: If there’s a purpose for both websites to link to each other, such as a partnership, then reciprocal links make sense. But if the entire purpose of the two-way link is “link juice,” you run the risk of getting penalized.

Footer Links

Why most people do it: A backlink from the footer of another website is seen as valuable because it’s a link back from every page on their website. Because all pages contain a footer, when you add the link just once, it’s like adding a backlink from every page on that site.

Why you shouldn’t do it: Similar to reciprocal links, if there’s a purpose, like telling readers who built the site, then it makes sense to include it. If the link is purely included to gain authority, is from a completely disconnected website or contains non-branded anchor text, the risk of a penalty is real.

Hidden Links

Why most people do it: By hiding text or links, some people think that you can include lots of links back to your site without Google even knowing about it.

Why you shouldn’t do it: Googlebots are smart and know when your website has any hidden text or links. Having hidden links is bad, but the double whammy comes in the fact that Google crawlers can see a different website than your visitors. That’s a big no-no and is one of the easiest ways to get penalized and drop in the rankings.

Comment Spam

Why most people do it: Some websites allow users to add a comment below a post, and sometimes those comment sections allow links. This is an easy way to link back to your site, right?

Why you shouldn’t do it: Wrong. Linking back to your site in the comment forms of other websites is spammy and something Google doesn’t want to see. In Google’s eyes, links should be earned through quality and valuable content, not posted in a comment form in just a few seconds. If you can add something to the conversation and a link back to your site in a comment is relevant and brings value to the readers, then it’s probably OK to include it. If not, try something a little less black hat.

Anchor Text Overuse

Why most people do it: Most SEO beginners are susceptible to this. When trying to rank a page or post for a specific search phrase, they try to link back to their websites using related anchor text. For example, someone trying to rank “brand new sailboats for sale” would link back to their website with 100 links, all with the anchor text, “brand new sailboats for sale.”

Why you shouldn’t do it: Again, Google sees what you’re trying to do. You’re attempting to rank well for a specific search phrase by using contextual anchor text. In the past, this worked pretty well! But not so much today. Google prefers branded anchor text instead of keyword anchor text — it’s more natural to link back using the anchor text, “Marty’s Boat Emporium,” because it’s more natural and suggests the link validates trust.

Malicious Backlinks

Why most people do it: To be clear, nobody does this to themselves on purpose. Nobody attempts to get links back to their website from malicious websites. Unfortunately, there are many black hat SEOs, spammers, and hackers out there who embrace the dark side and will try to damage another site by linking to it from a site that is spammy or even unindexed.

Why you shouldn’t do it: When a site that Google deems is spammy links to your site, it can hurt your ranking. If you see links from precarious websites coming to your website, it’s most likely they didn’t pick your site specifically, and they link to everyone. If you do find that there are suspicious websites linking to your website, use the Google Search Console Disavow Tool to ask Google to ignore the link.

Content

Publishing content that doesn’t provide any real value to your website visitors is grounds for a panda penalty. Here’s what to avoid when it comes to content.

Duplicate Content / Content Theft

Why most people do it: Producing high-quality, valuable content takes a lot of time and effort. For that reason, some people think they can take content published on another website and reuse / repurpose it on their own. Now your website can have great content without the pain of producing original content, right?

Why you shouldn’t do it: Not quite. Google is very particular about duplicate content and, in general, doesn’t like to see the exact same content spread across multiple domains. If you find a piece of content that you think your audience would find really valuable, it is possible to republish that article on your website as long as you have the permission of the original author and fully disclose the fact that it’s being republished. But if you’re thinking about blatantly copying content from another site, you’ll run the risk of a Google penalty.

Over-Optimization / Keyword Stuffing

Why most people do it: This is another common error for those new to the SEO world. Some people think that the more they optimize a page, the better their page will rank, so they include ten H1 tags and repeat the keyword phrase they’re trying to rank for over and over again.

Why you shouldn’t do it: This actually used to work. In 2000, if you wanted to rank for “purple elephant,” all you had to do was include the phrase “purple elephant” a few times in your title, a few times in your H1 tags, and ad nauseam in your content. But in 2017, Google is looking for the content that provides the most value to searchers. That means over-optimizing is out and focusing on giving the most comprehensive answer to a user’s queries is in.

Hidden Content

Why most people do it: Similar to hidden links, some people think they can include content that’s the same color as the background of the site. They do this to include textual keyword phrases in the website without affecting their users’ experience.

Why you shouldn’t do it: Again, Googlebots know when your website has any hidden text or links. Google’s priority is the users, and hidden content definitely counts as a bad user experience because it’s something bots can see but your visitors can’t. This is a big no-no and is one of the easiest ways to get penalized.

Security

While having an unsecured website can’t technically get you a Penguin or Panda penalty, it could result in the loss of your valuable rankings.

Hacked Website

If your website gets attacked or injected with malicious code and Google finds out, they can block your website for people using their search engine.

Not only will this cause you to lose the trust of anybody who visits your site from organic search, but it will cause your website to drop in the rankings just like a Penguin or Panda penalty would.

While it’s true you may receive a notification through Google Analytics that your site has been hacked, it still could mean a real penalty for your website in search results if Google knows your site contains malicious code.

To Wrap It Up

It should seem obvious that when it comes to black hat SEO, the numbers just don’t add up. Produce high-value content, follow Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, and most importantly, don’t be in a rush.

Do yourself a favor and become a Jedi, not a Sith. It will pay off in the long run.

Author:  Joe Howard

Source:  https://www.searchenginejournal.com/11-black-hat-techniques-can-kill-seo-campaign/180601

Saturday, 24 December 2016 14:31

Top 8 Christmas Apps for the iPhone

The App Store has a great selection of Christmas apps, covering everything from holiday music to greeting cards. While these apps are not delivered by Santa and his reindeer, they are a festive addition to your iPhone or iPod touch this holiday season. Here are our picks for the best Christmas apps.

1 Dr. Seuss Camera - The Grinch Edition

The Grinch Edition of the Dr. Seuss Camera is an adorable Christmas app for kids or anyone who could use some extra holiday spirit. It includes 20 “Grinchmas” cards that you can personalize with your own photos -- and who doesn't want a picture of themselves dressed as the Grinch? The cards can be emailed to friends or saved to the app’s photo library. If you’re only going to download one Christmas app this season, make it this one.  

2 Salvation Army Christmas Music

Proceeds from The Salvation Army Christmas Music app go to -- you guessed it -- the Salvation Army. The app includes a variety of holiday music stations, including classic Christmas songs, Christmas hymns, oldies, and children’s songs. You can’t select specific songs to play, but you can skip songs within each station. 

3 The Christmas List

If you are overwhelmed with holiday shopping each year, the Christmas List app is for you. It’s a full-featured list app with email support, address book integration, and plenty of sortable categories. I especially like that it tracks your spending so you don’t exceed your gift budget. And the app is password-protected to hide your list from prying eyes. 

4 Santa's Christmas Village

Santa’s Christmas Village (Free) includes more than 13 games with fun holiday themes. It’s got solitaire, checkers, hangman, minesweeper, and more. Twenty holiday songs are also included. Even if you’re not a big game fan, Santa’s Christmas Village is a perfect kids app for keeping them entertained during the holidays. 

5 Christmas Radio

The Christmas Radio app won me over with its festive interface and collection of more than 31,000 radio stations. The app is based on SHOUTcast radio, so you can search the stations by keyword and save your favorites for quick access later. Music can be streamed over EDGE3G or Wi-Fi, but you’ll want to stick to 3G or Wi-Fi for the best experience.

6 Christmas!!

If holiday anticipation is killing you, the Christmas!! app (Free) will keep you sane until the big day arrives. The app includes a Christmas countdown, advent calendar, and a small collection of holiday songs. An in-app gift list will also help you keep track of your holiday purchases. The content in this Christmas app won't be unlocked until December 1, but you can use it year after year.  

7 Christmas Sudoku

Even Sudoku apps are getting into the holiday spirit. Christmas Sudoku has three modes of gameplay -- easy, medium, and hard -- and 30 levels within each mode, so you won’t be bored with this one for a while. You can play the traditional game with numbers or spice things up with Christmas icons, in addition to playing with friends over Bluetooth

8 Good Food Festive Recipes

The BBC’s Good Food Festive Recipes app includes more than 100 holiday recipes with step-by-step instructions and photos for each dish. Vegetarian recipes are clearly identified, and the built-in turkey timer will certainly come in handy over the holidays. The app also includes a helpful tips section where you can master basic kitchen techniques.

Author:  Tanya Menoni

Source:  https://www.lifewire.com/top-christmas-apps-iphone-1999344

It’s time you know that an Effective Marketing Campaign doesn’t need to be too difficult or expensive. All successful online marketing campaigns should be within the grasp of any business whatever your budget is. An organized, planned online marketing campaign circling through different targeted sites is not too difficult to coordinate, does not have to be too costly and can generate sales and traffic faster than any other online marketing efforts.

Committing to these steps below and following them through can create a cost effective campaign and guaranteed investment returns within a short period.

It’s time you know that an Effective Marketing Campaign doesn’t need to be too difficult or expensive. All successful online marketing campaigns should be within the grasp of any business whatever your budget is. An organized, planned online marketing campaign circling through different targeted sites is not too difficult to coordinate, does not have to be too costly and can generate sales and traffic faster than any other online marketing efforts.

Committing to these steps below and following them through can create a cost effective campaign and guaranteed investment returns within a short period.

1. Make sure to define your customer

Just as important as naming your business or defining your product, it is even more important to define your customer. If you are yet to do your marketing plan within your business plan, you are missing the most important thing. Taking up this exercise now is the best thing to do. Creating your marketing plan should be focused on your unique Selling Proposition via promotions and advertising planning.

2. Know your targets

Defining your customer is one thing and knowing where to get your customer is another. Where you post your ads matters – how much customers do you generate from there? The most effective marketing campaign is the coordinated efforts across several venues and sites where your customers always visit. Having your ads on several places retains the strength of your message and your visibility in these sites.

Cross-promoting complementary sites to your visitors will show your visibility in these sites too and this will provide reinforcement to your message. Areas to consider in this regard should be Holiday Specific sites which are often well promoted. You might have a different view too.

Considering websites, newsletter or social media for your ads, your focus should be on the search engine placement, the traffic, external linking to this site, the types of messages in the current ads and the quality of the messages. Having a knowledge of these will reveal to you if;

  • You already have competitors on this site.
  • The advertising is complementing your business.
  • If the ads are completely related or unrelated to your business or calculated traffic of the site. With this, you will know if your message is fit to be on this site.

3. Set and examine your budget

It shouldn’t be surprising when some people think setting your budget should be the first move. But in reality, you can only create a better budget for your online business when you already know what is involved and you have a good idea about what it will cost. You really can’t do this when you have not figured out your targets so you can see why the idea of placing budget first may not work well if you need real online marketing campaign success. The mistake most people make is, they need the best for their budget without any knowledge what the best will cost. If you already have a budget made, going back to your marketing campaign sheet and totaling all your intended ad posts cost will reveal what your chances are, either below your budget or exceeds your budget. Until you have a clear understanding of your overall online marketing campaign cost, don’t be too sure about your budget.

Once you have a clear list of what ads you intend to post, you would be able to prioritize them going with your budget as to where you will get the most exposure if your budget is below the estimated ad posts cost. Also, if you are involved in Pay-Per-Click advertising, it’s advisable to always ‘log in’ daily for the first seven days (1 week) to monitor the results of your ads. This is just to ensure you are paying for results.

Make sure to ask if your payments cover ad swaps and bartering and consider this as part of your budget.

4. Organizing your Ad content

It’s true that online marketing works but best when the focus is on one or two things at a time. You may have different kinds of products but choose one of these or two that are attractive enough to your target market and this will do a lot of campaign magic than collecting all items and writing contents all about them. Most of your target customers just want to read something short and interesting with a beautiful image to behold.

Now the question you should ask yourself is “what actually am I selling”? a product or a service. Make sure what you are selling is beneficial and attractive enough to capture the target’s emotional interest. For instance, if you are selling cosmetics, you are selling beauty and using ads that relate to the customer will have the most success.

Next ask yourself again, “What am I selling”? It’s rarely the product or service. You are selling a benefit, something that registers at the emotional level. If you are selling fishing rods, for example, you’re selling the excitement of successfully landing that monster in the lake. If you are selling cosmetics, you’re selling beauty. Create many emotional words relating to the product- stimulating enough, addictive, relaxing, comforting and fun. You must be able to attract your target or customer.

5. Tracking and Monitoring Your Ads

In maintaining an effective marketing campaign, it’s essential to track and react to your campaign successes. Right from your Website Stats to the PPC Stats, there are diverse ways to check and determine what is really working out for you as planned and which isn’t working. With absolute concentration, you should be able to learn much about your ads and how to sharpen them for best results ever.

The most effective way to track your campaign ads is using tracking services that help track your activities. There are special advertising management services which help you track your ad performances, free or less costly services that are relatively very easy to implement which give powerful ad tracking management and support. Note that some venues such as Facebook ads provide their own ads reports.

The KEY

Ensure that on daily basis for the first 14 days, you keep reviews of your different ads. Make an inventory of this in a tracking sheet and search out for any patterns. Which of the ads are performing, where they are performing and why are they performing there? From here you can easily detect which ads are not working and remove or replace them.

Just as important as naming your business or defining your product, it is even more important to define your customer. If you are yet to do your marketing plan within your business plan, you are missing the most important thing. Taking up this exercise now is the best thing to do. Creating your marketing plan should be focused on your unique Selling Proposition via promotions and advertising planning.

2. Know your targets

Defining your customer is one thing and knowing where to get your customer is another. Where you post your ads matters – how much customers do you generate from there? The most effective marketing campaign is the coordinated efforts across several venues and sites where your customers always visit. Having your ads on several places retains the strength of your message and your visibility in these sites.

Cross-promoting complementary sites to your visitors will show your visibility in these sites too and this will provide reinforcement to your message. Areas to consider in this regard should be Holiday Specific sites which are often well promoted. You might have a different view too.

Considering websites, newsletter or social media for your ads, your focus should be on the search engine placement, the traffic, external linking to this site, the types of messages in the current ads and the quality of the messages. Having a knowledge of these will reveal to you if;

  • You already have competitors on this site.
  • The advertising is complementing your business.
  • If the ads are completely related or unrelated to your business or calculated traffic of the site. With this, you will know if your message is fit to be on this site.

3. Set and examine your budget

It shouldn’t be surprising when some people think setting your budget should be the first move. But in reality, you can only create a better budget for your online business when you already know what is involved and you have a good idea about what it will cost. You really can’t do this when you have not figured out your targets so you can see why the idea of placing budget first may not work well if you need real online marketing campaign success. The mistake most people make is, they need the best for their budget without any knowledge what the best will cost. If you already have a budget made, going back to your marketing campaign sheet and totaling all your intended ad posts cost will reveal what your chances are, either below your budget or exceeds your budget. Until you have a clear understanding of your overall online marketing campaign cost, don’t be too sure about your budget.

Once you have a clear list of what ads you intend to post, you would be able to prioritize them going with your budget as to where you will get the most exposure if your budget is below the estimated ad posts cost. Also, if you are involved in Pay-Per-Click advertising, it’s advisable to always ‘log in’ daily for the first seven days (1 week) to monitor the results of your ads. This is just to ensure you are paying for results.

Make sure to ask if your payments cover ad swaps and bartering and consider this as part of your budget.

4. Organizing your Ad content

It’s true that online marketing works but best when the focus is on one or two things at a time. You may have different kinds of products but choose one of these or two that are attractive enough to your target market and this will do a lot of campaign magic than collecting all items and writing contents all about them. Most of your target customers just want to read something short and interesting with a beautiful image to behold.

Now the question you should ask yourself is “what actually am I selling”? a product or a service. Make sure what you are selling is beneficial and attractive enough to capture the target’s emotional interest. For instance, if you are selling cosmetics, you are selling beauty and using ads that relate to the customer will have the most success.

Next ask yourself again, “What am I selling”? It’s rarely the product or service. You are selling a benefit, something that registers at the emotional level. If you are selling fishing rods, for example, you’re selling the excitement of successfully landing that monster in the lake. If you are selling cosmetics, you’re selling beauty. Create many emotional words relating to the product- stimulating enough, addictive, relaxing, comforting and fun. You must be able to attract your target or customer.

5. Tracking and Monitoring Your Ads

In maintaining an effective marketing campaign, it’s essential to track and react to your campaign successes. Right from your Website Stats to the PPC Stats, there are diverse ways to check and determine what is really working out for you as planned and which isn’t working. With absolute concentration, you should be able to learn much about your ads and how to sharpen them for best results ever.

The most effective way to track your campaign ads is using tracking services that help track your activities. There are special advertising management services which help you track your ad performances, free or less costly services that are relatively very easy to implement which give powerful ad tracking management and support. Note that some venues such as Facebook ads provide their own ads reports.

The KEY

Ensure that on daily basis for the first 14 days, you keep reviews of your different ads. Make an inventory of this in a tracking sheet and search out for any patterns. Which of the ads are performing, where they are performing and why are they performing there? From here you can easily detect which ads are not working and remove or replace them.

Author:  MICHAEL LILY

Source:  http://www.lifehack.org/489608/5-steps-to-guarantee-online-marketing-campaign-success

Two years ago, Google introduced the mobile-friendly label. Then we witnessed ‘mobilegeddon’, where Google began prioritizing these mobile sites. Now, they are cracking down on mobile sites offering a substandard user experience.

On January 10th 2017, any sites with intrusive interstitials may lose ranking juice. The key question then is, what counts as an intrusive interstitial? Essentially, it’s any extraneous content that appears over the majority of the page proper. Call them silly, but Google assumes visitors enjoy seeing the information they clicked for.

At this point you may well have further questions; fortunately, I am here to answer them. In this post, I will help you decide exactly what will and won’t count as an intrusive interstitial by Google. Let’s get straight to it!

What Is an Intrusive Interstitial?

Intrusive interstitials are essentially popup ads. They tend to block most or all of a page, leading to a bad user experience for desktop and mobile users alike.

google examples of intrusive interstitials

Google’s own examples of intrusive interstitials.

These types of ads make it frustrating at best to access the page as intended. The general exception to the rule is when there are legally required (or ethically advised) notifications, such as popups for age verification.

The kicker is that while popups are moderately annoying on desktops, there is even less screen real estate to work with on mobile devices. In these cases, it can completely ruin the user experience. Here are a few examples of how this goes wrong:

  1. The interstitial covers most or all of the content on a page.
  2. The interstitial is not responsive. That means it is difficult or impossible to close it on a mobile, rendering the page useless for mobile users.
  3. The interstitial is not triggered by an action, such as “Click here to subscribe.” Rather, it pops up on its own without prompting, creating an unpleasant surprise for the mobile viewer.

As you can see, the issue is not only the annoyance of popups but their role in ruining the user experience. If you find an interstitial on your own site that you’re not sure of, we find it best to err on the side of a pleasing experience for the user.

Why Are Intrusive Interstitials Being Targeted?

Our first clue that Google was shifting from banning app interstitials to allinterstitials was August 2015, when Gary Illyes confessed to the world that he’d love to use them as a negative ranking factor one day. Back then, he said, “But we don’t have anything to announce at the moment.”

By now, you already have a bit of insight into Google’s decision. For a better understanding of what exactly is under scrutiny as January 10th races towards us, we can look at the factors that play a role in the market.

As frustrating as users find popups, companies continue to use them because they are effective. In one recent study of 1,754,957,675 popups, there was an average 3.09% conversion rate, with high-performing popups performing on average at 9.28%.

However, mobile traffic is growing, and Google seems to be leaning into it hard. In 2015, Google reported that access via mobile was higher than desktop searches in ten countries. Meanwhile, it’s worth noting that 56% of traffic on major sites comes from mobile.

HubSpot’s Senior Product Marketing Manager, Marcus Andrews, recently gave us a friendly reminder that “Google is very focused on the user.” He notes, “Marketers are always looking for hacky ways to increase traffic and conversion rates, and every once in a while, Google needs to make a correction to improve the user experience.”

It’s no surprise then that Google is focusing its resources on mobile, rather than desktop. It’s where the majority of users are — that’s just good business. Between this and its Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project, it’s fair to say Google wants webmasters to offer a seamless user experience for mobile users.

It’s important to note that Google is currently only looking at interstitials that show up when the user first lands on the website from a search result. This means the important part is ensuring that any traffic coming from Google isn’t served these interstitials until the user has clicked further into the site.

“What we’re looking for is really interstitials that show up on the interaction between the search click and going through the page and seeing the content. What you do afterward like if someone clicks on stuff within your website or closes the tab or something like that then that’s kind of between you and the user,” John Mueller from Google Webmaster Central announced during an office-hours Google+ hangout.

How to Identify Intrusive Interstitials

Google has already decided that all interstitials ruining the user experience will negatively impact that site’s ranking signal.

What you need now is a blueprint to check your own site against. How can you tell which interstitials are okay, and which aren’t? Keep reading!

Intrusive Interstitials That Will Be Penalized

The examples of penalized interstitials provided by Google are relatively straightforward. So far, we know of three types of interstitials that will be problematic.

The first is a regular popup, or a modal window blocking the content of the page. These often come with a dark semi-transparent background dimming the rest of the content. These are perhaps the most traditional popups, in that they appear to literally pop up over the rest of the page.

An example of an intrusive popup from Google

An example of an intrusive popup from Google: a regular popup, or a modal window blocking the content of the page.

You can see how the background dims to a dark gray for the modal popup:

example of an intrusive popup
A real-life example of a regular intrusive popup.

The second is a standalone, full-screen interstitial that sits above the header of the website. These interstitials typically force your browser to scroll up to see it before letting you see the rest of the content.

An example of an intrusive standalone interstitial from Google

An example of an intrusive standalone interstitial from Google: a standalone, full-screen interstitial that sits above the header of the website.

The last is also a standalone, but essentially a full-screen modal window blocking the content.

Another example of an intrusive standalone interstitial from Google

Another example of an intrusive standalone interstitial from Google: essentially a full-screen modal window blocking the content.

Its functionality is like that of a regular popup, but you get no preview of what content lies below. In practice, they look exactly the same as the previous standalone popup. Here’s a real-life example:

a real-life example of an intrusive standalone interstitial

A real-life example of an intrusive standalone interstitial that blocks the content.

However, in some cases, it doesn’t seem so cut and dry. For example, what if you have a live chat box that automatically appears to help the guest? This isn’t a direct advertisement, but it does still ruin the user experience if all they want to do is read the content they came for.

In these cases, think about the popup in its purest form — a box that appears over the actual page content. If it’s not a necessity, there’s a good chance it’s going to be penalized.

Intrusive Interstitials That Shouldn’t Be Penalized

It’s important to remember that not all interstitials will be an issue. Depending on your website and country, you may have legal or ethical reasons to display interstitials. Google knows this, and isn’t planning to punish you for it.

Google provides two predominant examples of these legally required interstitials, the first being legally required age verification blockers. These help create a shield for age-sensitive content such as websites featuring alcohol or adult content. The second example is cookie consent notifications, as they are required in the EU.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, any banners taking up a “reasonable amount of space” should be safe. Though an exact size is not provided, it is better to play it safe and assume less is more. If you keep it to 15% or less, even landscape mode devices will still have enough room to read several lines of text.

This goes to show that you can still keep your ads, but you may need to switch up your approach by respecting the user’s screen space first and foremost. Try redesigning interstitials you can’t part with so they take up a small amount of the page, perhaps reducing them to a link that leads to a separate page entirely. In a last-ditch effort, you could change them to be inline ads. If you’re not sure what works best, try A/B testing to find an effective middle ground.

All this said, there is no guarantee of what will or will not be counted against you. Google only notes that these, when used responsibly, will not be affected.

Conclusion

As the deadline draws near, we urge you to check your interstitials and ensure they follow Google’s new guidelines. Though it’s not clear how strong this new ranking signal will be, Google shows a definitive preference for mobile. We recommend that you don’t underestimate its power.

It is relatively straightforward to identify your intrusive interstitials and take action:

  1. Review required interstitials, such as age-verification popups and cookie notifications. You’ll leave these live, but ensure they are easy to use on mobile devices.
  2. Find the interstitials on your site, leading directly from Google search, that act as advertisements.
  3. If these are so effective that you can’t justify getting rid of them, try modifying them to take up a small amount of screen space for mobile devices. Otherwise, we recommend removing them entirely.

What are your fears about the new intrusive interstitial ranking signal? Ask any further questions you have in the comments section below!

Author:  Aleh Barysevich

Source:  https://www.searchenginejournal.com

Tuesday, 06 December 2016 13:30

Using the Mac Security Preference Pane

The Security preference pane allows you to control the security level of the user accounts on your Mac. In addition, the Security preference pane is where you configure your Mac's firewall, as well as turn data encryption on or off for your user account.

The Security preference pane is divided into three sections.

General: Controls password usage, specifically, whether passwords are required for certain activities. Controls automatic log-out of a user account. Lets you specify whether location-based services have access to your Mac's location data.

FileVault: Controls data encryption for your home folder, and all of your user data.

Firewall: Allows you to enable or disable your Mac's built-in firewall, as well as configure the various firewall settings.

Let's get started with configuring the security settings for your Mac.

Launch the Security Preference Pane

Click the System Preferences icon in the Dock or select 'System Preferences' from the Apple menu.

Click the Security icon in the Personal section of the System Preferences window.

Proceed to the next page to learn about the General configuration options.

2 Using the Mac Security Preference Pane - General Mac Security Settings

Using the Mac Security Preference Pane - General Mac Security Settings

The Mac Security preference pane has three tabs along the top of the window. Select the General tab to get started with configuring your Mac's general security settings.

The General section of the Security preference pane controls a number of basic but important security settings for your Mac. In this guide, we will show you what each setting does, and how to make changes to the settings. You can then decide if you need the security enhancements available from the Security preference pane.

If you share your Mac with others, or your Mac is located in a place where others can easily gain access to it, you may wish to make some changes to these settings.

General Mac Security Settings

Before you can begin making changes, you must first authenticate your identity with your Mac.

Click the lock icon in the bottom left-hand corner of the Security preference pane.

You will be prompted for an administrator username and password. Provide the requested information, and then click OK.

The lock icon will change to an unlocked state. You're now ready to make any changes you wish.

Require password: If you place a check mark here, then you (or anyone who attempts to use your Mac) will be required to provide the password for the currently account in order to exit sleep or an active screen saver. This is a good basic security measure that can keep prying eyes from seeing what you're currently working on, or accessing your user account data.

If you select this option, you can then use the dropdown menu to select a time interval before the password is required. I suggest selecting an interval long enough that you can exit a sleep or screen saver session that starts unexpectedly, without needing to provide a password. Five seconds or 1 minute are good choices.

Disable automatic login: This option requires users to authenticate their identity with their password any time they log on.

Require a password to unlock each System Preferences pane: With this option selected, users must provide their account ID and password any time they attempt to make a change to any secure system preference. Normally, the first authentication unlocks all secure system preferences.

Log out after xx minutes of inactivity: This option lets you select a set amount of idle time after which the currently logged-in account will be automatically logged out.

Use secure virtual memory: Selecting this option will force any RAM data written to your hard drive to be first encrypted. This applies to both virtual memory usage and Sleep mode, when the contents of RAM are written to your hard drive.

Disable Location Services: Selecting this option will prevent your Mac from providing location data to any application that requests the information.

Click the Reset Warnings button to remove location data already in use by applications.

Disable remote control infrared receiver: If your Mac is equipped with an IR receiver, this option will turn the receiver off, preventing any IR device from sending commands to your Mac.

3  Using the Mac Security Preference Pane - FileVault Settings

Using the Mac Security Preference Pane - FileVault Settings

FileVault uses a 128-bit (AES-128) encryption scheme to protect your user data from prying eyes. Encrypting your home folder makes it nearly impossible for anyone to access any user data on your Mac without your account name and password.

FileVault can be very handy for those with portable Macs who are concerned about loss or theft. When FileVault is enabled, your home folder becomes an encrypted disk image that is mounted for access after you log in. When you log off, shut down, or sleep, the home folder image is unmounted and is no longer available.

When you first enable FileVault, you may find the encryption process can take a very long time. Your Mac is converting all of your home folder data into the encrypted disk image. Once the encryption process is complete, your Mac will encrypt and decrypt individual files as needed, on the fly. This results in only a very slight performance penalty, one that you will rarely notice except when accessing very large files.

To change FileVault's settings, select the FileVault tab in the Security Preferences pane.

Configuring FileVault

Before you can begin making changes, you must first authenticate your identity with your Mac.

Click the lock icon in the bottom left-hand corner of the Security preference pane.

You will be prompted for an administrator username and password. Provide the requested information, and then click OK.

The lock icon will change to an unlocked state. You're now ready to make any changes you wish.

Set Master Password: The master password is a fail-safe. It allows you to reset your user password in the event you forget your login information. However, if you forget both your user account password and the master password, you will not be able to access your user data.

Turn On FileVault: This will enable the FileVault encryption system for your user account. You will be asked for your account password and then given the following options:

Use secure erase: This option overwrites the data when you empty the trash. This ensures that the trashed data is not easily recoverable.

Use secure virtual memory: Selecting this option will force any RAM data written to your hard drive to be first encrypted.

When you turn FileVault on, you will be logged out while your Mac encrypts your home folder's data. This can take quite a while, depending on the size of your home folder.

Once the encryption process is complete, your Mac will display the login screen, where you can provide your account password to log in.

4  Using the Mac Security Preference Pane - Configuring Your Mac's Firewall

Using the Mac Security Preference Pane - Configuring Your Macs Firewall

Your Mac includes a personal firewall you can use to prevent network or Internet connections. The Mac's firewall is based on a standard UNIX firewall called ipfw. This is a good, though basic, packet-filtering firewall. To this basic firewall Apple adds a socket-filtering system, also known as an application firewall. The application firewall makes it easier to configure the firewall settings. Instead of needing to know which ports and protocols are necessary, you can just specify which applications have the right to make incoming or outgoing connections.

To begin, select the Firewall tab in the Security preference pane.

Configuring the Mac's Firewall

Before you can begin making changes, you must first authenticate your identity with your Mac.

Click the lock icon in the bottom left-hand corner of the Security preference pane.

You will be prompted for an administrator username and password. Provide the requested information, and then click OK.

The lock icon will change to an unlocked state. You're now ready to make any changes you wish.

Start: This button will start the Mac's firewall. Once the firewall has been started, the Start button will change to a Stop button.

Advanced: Clicking this button will allow you to set the options for the Mac's firewall. The Advanced button is only enabled when the firewall is turned on.

Advanced Options

Block all incoming connections: Selecting this option will cause the firewall to prevent any incoming connections to non-essential services. Essential services as defined by Apple are:

Configd: Allows DHCP and other network configuration services to occur.

mDNSResponder: Allows the Bonjour protocol to function.

raccoon: Allows IPSec (Internet Protocol Security) to function.

If you choose to block all incoming connections, then most file, screen, and print sharing services will no longer function.

Automatically allow signed software to receive incoming connections: When selected, this option will automatically add securely signed software applications to the list of applications that are allowed to accept connections from an external network, including the Internet.

You can manually add applications to the firewall's application filter list using the plus (+) button. Likewise, you can remove applications from the list using the minus (-) button.

Enable stealth mode: When enabled, this setting will prevent your Mac from responding to traffic queries from the network. This will make your Mac appear to be non-existent on a network.

Author:  Tom Nelson

Source:  https://www.lifewire.com

Almost everyone is now technologically surrounded while most of us can’t imagine a tech-free life.

How do you feel if you had no internet presence at all and you are not existent in the digital world…?

Well, you can erase all your internet existence with just a click.

Wille Dahlbo and Linus Unnebäck, two developers from Sweden, have created Deseat.me – a page which allows you to wipe your entire web presence clean.

internet-3

All you have to do is log in with a Google account, and the programme scans for any apps or services you’ve created accounts for.

It then puts them all in a handy list, like so:

internet-2

“Privacy and data security is something we regard as extremely important,” explain the team behind the site.

“In fact, it’s our number one focus from beginning to end. That’s why we built it to run on your computer. So basically the only thing you’re telling us is what accounts you want to delete. Thats it, and since we use Google’s OAuth protocol we don’t have access to any of your login information.”

internet-4

The site will only delete the information linked to a certain email address – and, at the moment, it only works with Gmail. So if you’ve used Yahoo, Hotmail or another email service to sign up to things, you’re not going to be able to wipe that.

Author:  Web Desk

Source:  http://arynews.tv/

There are multiple timelines playing out in parallel universes, according to a team of researchers.

The sensational claim was made by a team of physicists, who believe that the parallel universes can all affect one another.

Professor Howard Wiseman and Dr. Michael Hall, from Griffith University’s Centre for Quantum Dynamics, claim that the idea of parallel universes is more than just science fiction.

Fellow researcher Dr. Dirk-Andre Deckert, from the University of California, helped further the researchers’ theory, which goes against almost all conventional understanding of space and time.

WEARABLE CAMERA LETS YOU 'GO BACK IN TIME' TO RECORD FLEETING MOMENTS

If there really are multiple, interacting universes, then it would be possible for time travellers to visit Earth, and every imaginable scenario would be played out in a parallel universe at some point.

The team’s ‘Many Interacting Worlds Theory’ provides a whole new perspective on the ideas underpinning quantum theory, a notoriously complex strand of physics.

Professor Wiseman said: “The idea of parallel universes in quantum mechanics has been around since 1957.

“In the well-known ‘Many-Worlds Interpretation’, each universe branches into a bunch of new universes every time a quantum measurement is made.

“All possibilities are therefore realised – in some universes the dinosaur-killing asteroid missed Earth. In others, Australia was colonised by the Portuguese.

“But critics question the reality of these other universes, since they do not influence our universe at all.

“On this score, our ‘Many Interacting Worlds’ approach is completely different, as its name implies.”

WEASEL SHUTS DOWN WORLD'S LARGEST ATOM SMASHER IN SWITZERLAND

According to the theory, our universe is just one of many enormous worlds, with some identical to our reality and others completely different.

The Express reports that the worlds are all real, and all on the same timeline, but interact when they essentially bump into each other.

Dr. Hall believes that the group’s sensational theory fits with current scientific understanding, offering a new perspective rather than rewriting the physics rule book completely.

Author:  The Sun

Source:  http://www.foxnews.com/

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