Yup… It’s Time to Get Rid of Your Keyboard

 

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Have you noticed that technology is advancing faster than previously expected? It appears that technology is heading in a brand new direction, a more sci-fi form. Previous technologies such as the keyboard and the mouse are quickly becoming obsolete to the brand new power house technologies appearing on the market. I don’t mean to hate on the keyboard or the mouse but, everything is quickly becoming motion-sensored and touch screen based.

 

What could possibly replace the keyboard or the mouse?

 

How about two badass technologies provided by Google and Leap!

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The future is in our reach. These two devices go where no device has gone before. Leap Motion is a tiny device that is perhaps, technology’s greatest advancement yet. This device allows you to interact with your computer in real, natural ways. Secondly, Google has created Google Glass; it is as intriguing as it sounds. Google Glass is a wearable computer on your head! It displays information in a smartphone-like way, which can interact with the internet through voice commands. How awesome is that?

 

Leap Motion

The Leap Motion Controller is sleek and tiny. It’s hard to believe that such a powerful device is only 3 inches long. This device will hardly take up any space on your desk. You can do almost anything without touching anything. The Leap Motion controller senses every little move your fingers make; it completely allows you to become interactive with your computer. I feel that this device will make the whole user interface disappear. What is so remarkable about Leap Motion is that enables your finger to be moved in front of the open space before your computer, instead of dragging your finger on a touch screen or mouse. It’s time to say goodbye to your mouse!

You could say that this technology is similar to the Xbox Kinect…

 “Michael Buckwald, Leap Motion CEO and co-founder, said, “Kinect was a great first step for this space and is great for playing games in the living room”

 

But, Leap Motion technology is nowhere near comparable to the Kinect. Leap Motion is 200 times more sensitive and accurate than the Xbox Kinect. What’s amazing is that Leap has the capability of tracking each individual finger at the exact same time. As you can see, this device was created by people that were frustrated of using a mouse and a keyboard for the computer. This is effectively used when it comes to 3D modeling, gaming, designing, or simply scrolling. There have been a lot of companies wanting to create unique and innovative apps for the motion-sensing device. All around the world, developers are anxiously awaiting to work with the device and create something amazing. Imagine the possibilities that can come about from The Leap!  I believe that we can expect many amazing things from the Leap. I absolutely cannot wait for the hands-free use of a PC to be released May 13th!

For only a price of $79.99, this device is definitely worth buying. Goodbye Mouse!

 

Here’s a video on how Leap is going to work:

 

Google Glass

Google Glass is revolutionary! It’s a surprisingly simple concept, a little monitor placed on top of a glasses frame. You are able to record live, through your own perspective. You can even share what you see live, bringing social media to a whole new level. There are many possibilities with Google Glass. You can ask it questions, get directions, get translations, even send messages! Glass is very strong and light, with a nice sleek evolutionary design. Google glass is self-explanatory, all of its features are easy and simple to use. The tiny prism display sits a little above your eye line, making it not as distraction to have around.

What if I already wear glasses?

For a person, like me, that utilizes glasses, this is a big concern. But, there is no need for worries; Google is experimenting with designs that will fit over existing glasses. The Glass design is modular, so it can be added to frames and lenses that match your eye prescription. Who really wants to wear two sets of glasses?

Google Glass has not been released yet, but guess what!? They are already facing legal issues

When you think about it, Google Glass has the potential to distract many drivers on the road.  That is why a lawmaker in West Virginia is attempting to create a new bill that will make it illegal to drive “using a wearable computer with a head-mounted display”. This new law is an addition to the old texting and talking while driving law. The only reason Google Glass has the potential to distract drivers is due to the fact that one can talk through the device, watch a video or read an article. This could distract many drivers. However, Google mentioned that they are putting a lot of thought into the design, so as to not impact the safety on our roads and potentially reduce accidents.

Overall, this device is going to be revolutionary. For all those Sci-fi fanatics, this device is definitely for you! This device will most likely be available to buy, by the end of 2013!

 

Here’s a video on how Glass feels:

 

Overall, technology is rapidly advancing. We are beginning to see more sci-fi devices come to life. The Leap and Glass are just the beginning to a whole new evolution of devices. Soon enough, there will no longer be a use for a keyboard, or even a mouse. 

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Privacy amongst Social Media Companies Is Not the Case Anymore

 

Social media has completely revolutionized the world today.  Nowadays, almost everyone uses some form of social media. An astonishing statistic is that 98% of 18-24 year olds utilize social media! Can you believe that Facebook has over 1.2 billion users worldwide? To think how much influence they have over the social media business is astonishing. Alongside, there are nearly 800 million active users on YouTube that spend over 15 minutes watching pointless videos every day. Other social media websites, such as Twitter have grown stronger and larger; there is over 190 million tweets happening per day, which are nearly 120 thousand tweets sent per second! Another big social media site taking over is Instagram; according to some stats, there are well over 5 million pictures uploaded to Instagram every hour.

It is becoming evident that social media is taking over. On a day to day basis, people will notice it in advertisements, television, articles etc.

But with all these various kinds of social media and our information being put out into cyberspace, how much of our information is publically displayed? What is private? Should we be concerned about our privacy online? Is utilizing social media safe?

Our information is not private

There are many problems with social media, but amongst the biggest of concerns is without a doubt, privacy. A lot of the privacy policies implemented are flawed, and generally give away our personal information. Social media websites add so many features and functionality to their sites, that privacy is completely ignored. For example, a few sites use a single – access sign on system to access multiple sites. With this in effect, there is no longer the need to sign in and use your password again. With single access becoming more common, it is evident that the sites allowing this have the ability to share your info with other sites. Ultimately, info on everything that you do will be appearing on random websites that you are not even aware of.  Evidently, ads pop up on you all the time, whether it is a tweet, a shared post or an image, ads play a big role in social media. If you read in between the lines (I.e. the privacy policy), it clearly allows other 3rd party applications to gain access on your information. This is a huge concern. Even though we have the capability to deny access, does anyone even try to stop it? A lot of the time, the privacy policy changes without the user even being informed. Does anyone actually read and trust the privacy policy? I know I Don’t. A huge nightmare with social networking is that they are able to track our every move. Location based services are highly risky as they expose people’s privacy greatly. If you allow this service, at any point, your current address is exposed to everyone! It is very important that individuals take the necessary precautions to protect themselves against this threat. As social media advances, there has to be more security implemented in their privacy policies.

Facebook

Facebook has many flaws in terms of privacy. Since the beginning of the company, they’ve done stupid things with the website that jeopardizes our privacy. Facebook’s privacy policy can sell your info to third parties. Can you believe that? Back in 2012, there was a problem with Facebook’s security settings, where old private messages were being leaked onto public timelines. If you have nothing to hide, then there should not be a problem. Facebook has had a long history of privacy flaws ever since the company started as “The Facebook” in 2004. When newsfeed was launched, users were not able to control who could see their updates; now that was a problem. Later on, Facebook had launched Beacon. Beacon was an ad system that tracked users every move and what they purchased on their partner’s websites. They’ve have had privacy issues starting from sharing information as the default setting to having users promote ads without their consent, simply because they hit the “like” button on a product or picture. Facebook claims that “individual user date is not shared between Facebook and advertisers”, but that is completely false.

Twitter

Millions of people use Twitter every day, and a lot of tweets go through. If you use twitter, I’m 100% sure that you have seen at least one person send you a direct message with a link. These links are third party applications that have gained unauthorized access to your personal data and send others a link, with the attempt to also gain their data. This is a flaw with Twitter’s permissions and how the user grants third party apps to gain access without them even knowing. When these apps gain access, Twitter has no way of informing the user that their info has been breached.  A controversial issue came up during 2012, when a website began publishing users home addresses online. That is a scary thought, as your privacy is affected greatly. Twitter utilizes a location based system when users tweet, however this website was able to trace this back to their home address and even provide a street view image of their home. Location based services should inform the user when they are being tracked. In this sense, Twitter needs improvement when it comes to alerting users about security issues when their own privacy is being compromised.

Instagram

Instagram is becoming a popular app to use, where millions of people post pictures of themselves daily. This popular photo sharing app changes its privacy policy regularly. Basically what their new privacy policy states is that “Some or all of the Service may be supported by advertising revenue. To help us deliver interesting paid or sponsored content or promotions, you agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with any associated metadata), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without any compensation to you.”. Now that is a violation of our privacy as third party applications are allowed access to our photos and we would not even know about it! Furthermore, Instagram joined forces with Facebook, instead of your photos being hosted on an amazon web server; they’ll be hosted on Facebook servers. If you don’t want Instagram to share your photos to Facebook, then you can simply delete your account. If Instagram wants to keep their current number of members, they should work on their privacy issues if they do not want to incur any losses.

The Sites listed above are only a few of the many that actually exist. Other social sites include:

  • Myspace
  • LinkedIN
  • Google Plus
  • Four square
  • Skype
  • Cinemagram
  • Pheeds
  • Youtube etc.

 

To conclude, Social media is having a huge impact on society. However, privacy is getting harder to keep as companies are able to get your information due to flawed privacy policies. We must be aware of this and be careful with what we put out there on the cyber net.

 

 

Security Threats like No Tomorrow | Is our Information really all that safe?

 

Nowadays, as computers become more advanced, so too does Malware.  This software enters your computer without any need for authorization. Many of these viruses have the capability of stealing all your personal information and can be very costly, depending on how great they affect you. Vast amounts of your data can be stolen in a single second. Electronic information such as credit cards, taxes and work related info can all be accessed. Personal privacy is threatened as computers are able to monitor, process and collect large amounts of your information. This is because all your information is online.

A couple of methods to retrieve your personal information are:

All of the methods listed above can be used to steal your info. There are so many possibilities, any elite hacker can somehow figure out your password, or scam you into giving you their password and completely take your identity or steal your banking info. According to security experts, consumers are mainly effected by spam and phishing emails.

Why is our information valuable to Cybercriminals?

If our information is hacked, then cybercriminals gain access to our personal files and can then sell this data to many producers. These producers vary from spammers to identity thieves. These Buyers can essentially then use our data to make even more money, in comparison to what the hackers initially received.

You definitely have to know how to protect your information now. Anti-viruses are not enough.

DDos Attacks

Security challenges seem to be becoming harder and harder to fight. These threats are becoming harder to detect and much more intelligent. Many computer networks are failing to properly secure their network, thus allowing more attacks. Fighting malware is not easy as they target vulnerabilities that have not been found by experts. Distributed denial-of-service attacks are increasing in size every single year. Normally these attacks consist of 5 – 10 gigabytes per second, but it has been found that some of these Monster DDos attacks are exceeding 60 gigabytes per second. That’s quite a bit of power to take down many financial firms and their websites.

How safe is your password?

 

Another challenge being faced today is the concern of the vulnerability of passwords. Almost any passcode can be hacked. Currently, users are being encouraged to pick really long pass codes, due to the fact that hackers entering a network will have a tougher time gaining access. Google is currently developing a brand new system on password control. According to Google, they are working on a web protocol that allows everyone to use tokens to access their online accounts.  “Imagine that you have one single key and one single password to securely access all your internet life”. These “tokens” can be plugged into a USB port and can be erased, reused, and has the ability to hold multiple passwords for many apps. The only challenge with tokens is that one must carry them everywhere they go, a small sacrifice for protecting all your personal information.

 

Malicious hackers have now moved to mobile platforms such as Apple, Android and even Macs! (Weren’t Macs supposed to be impenetrable when it came to viruses?) Apple admits Macs that they are no longer virus proof. For years, Macs were not a target for major malicious malware. Now, it has been discovered that over 600,000 “virus proof” Macs were infected with malware. This is why PC is better ;). The only reason why Mac never had viruses is because there is very little mac users compared to the number of users that use a PC. To continue, mobile malware is growing at a rapid pace. We’re seeing hackers being able to implement viruses on your mobile device, therefore being able to gather more personal information, and even being able to track your every movement. Now, that is worrisome. Mobile devices are being targeted because it is a very effective way to distribute malware, due to the fact that it is harder to recognize.

In a world of technology, we have to encrypt, protect, and download a lot of anti-viruses, firewalls, key chains etc. in order to have a fighting chance against protecting our personal information.

Here’s a little video that i found very interesting, and it shows how easy it is to hack into someone’s computer. Enjoy.