AfterDawn: Tech news

Latest news

AfterDawn: News

Google: Why 'Security Questions' suck for security

Written by James Delahunty @ 22 May 2015 0:36

Google: Why 'Security Questions' suck for security After some really interesting research results, Google is raising awareness about how unreliable "Security Questions" are for legitimate login authentication, password recovery and more.

Providers of Internet services have long asked their users to provide answers to questions about themselves which may be used for identity verification later. Typically, these questions are asked if a login is suspicious (unfamiliar location etc.) or as a layer of a password recovery process.

It turns out that this is an extremely unreliable layer of security. Hundreds of millions of secret question and answer combinations were analysed by Google, with the goal of (among other things) determining how likely it would have been for an attacker to guess the answers correctly.

One thing Google noted in its research is that answers tend to either be fairly secure while difficult to remember, or easy to remember while being insecure. There isn't much middle ground.

Easy and Insecure vs. Difficult and Secure

Sometimes answers can be guessed very easily. For example, Google found that an attacker had a 19.7 percent chance of answering "What is your favorite food?" correctly if the account holder speaks English. The answer? Pizza!

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Racism and the White House: What happened with Google Maps this week?

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 23:16

Racism and the White House: What happened with Google Maps this week? Google Maps was at the center of Internet outrage this week with demands for apologies, and heads to roll, in an unfortunate set of circumstances that associated 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue with racist search terms.

It emerged that searches of "n****r house" or "n****r king" in Google Maps brought up the home of Barack Obama, and Google very quickly responded with an investigation. In the meantime, the story took off and all eyes were on the Mountain View giant.

It's not as if racism is new to the Internet; let's be honest this place is full of assholes, but for it to appear as a top result in such an important Google service raised questions. How could this happen? How could Google let it happen?

Unsurprisingly, it was down to the aforementioned assholes that roam the digital plains and spread their toxicity wherever they can be seen. It's no secret that Google is constantly probing the web and using that crowdsourced pile of data to drive features of its services.

Yeah, you can already see where this is going!

In online discussions of the White House, racist slurs were used frequently enough for Google's systems to strongly associate them with the location. That crowdsourced data scoured from every corner of the web mixed with some offensive search terms in Google Maps produced a very embarrassing result for Google, and one that was offensive to a lot of people.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Watch Delta Airlines' meme-packed safety video

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 22:00

Watch Delta Airlines' meme-packed safety video Delta Airlines has turned to Internet memes to get you to pay attention to the safety instructions for its aircraft.

The memes will bring back some memories, including that damn dancing baby from the late 90s that caused so much fuss. It also includes nods to Mentos & Coke madness, the Evolution of Dance, Keyboard Cat, Peanut Butter Jelly Time and of course that wide-scale study of human psychology that was the Ice Bucket Challenge.

Oh and of course, no meme video would be complete without a goat screaming when it learns that you can't smoke on and airplane.

Well, cringe or laugh, here it is.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Google sending piracy settlement notices to Fiber subscribers?

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 21:53

Google sending piracy settlement notices to Fiber subscribers? Google Fiber subscribers who have used their super-fast Internet service to download and share copyright infringing files could soon hear from the Mountain View giant.

According to TorrentFreak, Google has been sending copyright infringement notices to subscribers whose accounts have been flagged by third parties for piracy activity. Controversially, TF alleges that Google is also forwarding settlement demands from Rightscorp and CEG TEK.

Settlements are offered to Internet users ranging from $20 to $300.

Other ISPs in the United States, including Comcast and Verizon, do not forward such settlement demands to subscribers, given that the subscribers are only alleged to have committed a crime and there's typically no evidence to hold the account hold personally responsible.

Along with the demands from Rightscorp and CEG TEK, Google also warns users that repeated violations of its Terms of Services - which expressly prohibits copyright infringement - can result in remedial action including service termination.

Read more at TorrentFreak




AfterDawn: News

YouTube supports 60fps live streaming in HTML5 player

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 19:43

YouTube supports 60fps live streaming in HTML5 player Smooth! In a move aimed at Amazon's Twitch and others in the growing arena of video game streaming, YouTube now supports 60fps in 1080p.

Google's video giant previously added support for 60fps videos, which was welcomed and embraced by gamers. In HD, the difference between 30fps and 60fps is very noticeable for some fast action content. Now YouTube has added the same support for streaming game footage, using a HTML5 player in compatible browsers.

"When you start a live stream on YouTube at 60fps, we'll transcode your stream into 720p60 and 1080p60, which means silky smooth playback for gaming and other fast-action videos," YouTube's creator blog announced.

"We'll also make your stream available in 30fps on devices where high frame rate viewing is not yet available, while we work to expand support in the coming weeks."

Any app using YouTube's live streaming API can add a new high frame rate flag to enable 60fps streaming.

Additionally, the HTML5 player supports variable speed playback, enabling viewers to skip backwards and then increase the playback rate to 1.5x or 2x to catch up to live.

Twitch - which cost Amazon almost $1 billion to acquire - claims to have reached an average of 100 million viewers per month. Google was considering buying Twitch before Amazon swooped in, and now wants its YouTube platform to eat its audience instead.




AfterDawn: News

Grand Theft Auto developer sues the BBC

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 19:20

Grand Theft Auto developer sues the BBC Grand Theft Auto developer Rockstar Games has filed a lawsuit against the BBC in the UK over a film starring Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe.

'Game Changer' is a drama being made about the public and legal spats between Rockstar Games and anti-gaming (disbarred) lawyer Jack Thompson. It stars Daniel Radcliffe as Sam Houser, co-founder and President of Rockstar Games, while the role of Thompson is filled by Bill Paxton.

Rockstar Games confirmed that it has sued the BBC over the upcoming feature, citing its desire to protect its intellectual property and trademarks.

"Take-Two Interactive has filed suit against the BBC for trademark infringement based on their movie currently titled'Game Changer' as it relates to Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto video game series," the firm said in a statement, published by IGN.

"While holders of the trademarks referenced in the film title and its promotion, Rockstar Games has had no involvement with this project. Our goal is to ensure that our trademarks are not misused in the BBC's pursuit of an unofficial depiction of purported events related to Rockstar Games. We have attempted multiple times to resolve this matter with the BBC without any meaningful resolution. It is our obligation to protect our intellectual property and unfortunately in this case litigation was necessary."

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Android TV gets HBO, ESPN with Sling TV; 50% discount on Nexus Player on offer

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 18:44

Android TV gets HBO, ESPN with Sling TV; 50% discount on Nexus Player on offer Android TV devices can now get new sports and entertainment content through the Sling TV app, and new customers can get 50% off a Nexus Player for a limited time.

Sling TV will bring Android TV devices - like the Nexus Player - new content from HBO and live Sports for paying customers. For $20 per month, Sling TV delivers 22 channels, featuring content like the NBA Playoffs on ESPN and SportsCenter.

HBO can be added for $15 per month to provide access to Game of Thrones, True Detective and other HBO shows. The upcoming Ballers premieres on June 21 and it can be watched live for subscribers on Sling TV.

Sling TV is also offering a 50% discount on a Nexus Player for those who sign up for three months of service.


Nexus Player & Remote

The Sling TV app is now available in Google Play in the United States for Nexus Player etc.




AfterDawn: News

'Netflix for Pirates': More Popcorn Time blocks ordered by court

Written by James Delahunty @ 21 May 2015 18:19

'Netflix for Pirates': More Popcorn Time blocks ordered by court Controversial 'Netflix for Pirates' services under the Popcorn Time banner are facing further blocking at the hands of a court.

This time the service is being targeted in Israel, where media firms have acquired a court order mandating that Internet Service Providers block access to Popcorn Time websites. The complaint was brought to a court in Tel Aviv by ZIRA, which represents content owners in Israel and elsewhere.

Around the world, Popcorn Time is being fought by targeting the websites that host the applications. Not only are these websites devoid of any copyright infringing material, but they don't even host torrent files or even link to torrent files.

No Legitimate Use

The position of media companies objecting to this "free Netflix" app is that it has no legitimate use. Its sole purpose instead is to act as user-friendly graphical frontend for users to download movies and TV shows using BitTorrent and watch the content as it downloads.

BitTorrent clients on the other hand can be used for legitimate purposes, and so there has been no major push to attack the main websites of Vuze or uTorrent, for example.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Video: LEGO Dimensions brings back Christopher Lloyd

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 17:37

Video: LEGO Dimensions brings back Christopher Lloyd LEGO has released another trailer for its upcoming "LEGO Dimensions" video game, and this time it features Christopher Lloyd.

The game will integrate the DC comics universe, Lord of the Rings, Back to the Future and plenty more.

In the trailer, Lloyd creates a portal to the LEGO world and remains in LEGO form.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Oculus sends out invites to special event on June 11th

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 15:30

Oculus sends out invites to special event on June 11th Oculus VR has sent out press invites to a special event on June 11th, with more information about next year's consumer headset likely to be unveiled.

The company also announced that pre-orders for the consumer launch would begin later this year, so there is a good chance we will get a better look into the hardware specs of the device.

Earlier this month the company finally confirmed the release of the consumer model, which will follow a couple of developer models.

Oculus also released the minimum specs for your VR headset to ensure everything runs properly including an Intel i5-4590, a GeForce GTX 970 and 8GB RAM.




AfterDawn: News

Can we expect a PS4 price drop this year?

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 14:37

Can we expect a PS4 price drop this year? Thanks to some sharp eyes over at WholesomeGamer, we now have the rumor that Sony may be preparing to drop the price of the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita.

On Sony's official retail loyalty site, there is a promotion running that will allow members to win prizes, and snuck in the fine print are the listed ARV (average retail value) of each prize.

The PS Vita is listed with an ARV of just $89 for the promotion and the PS4 is valued at $349. Those prizes are nice discounts from the current retail price of $200 for the Vita and $400 for the PS4.

While the price cuts would not be all too unexpected, and the documents could just be mistakes, but there is a possibility that Sony will cut later this year following the unexpected sales win by the Xbox One in April.




AfterDawn: News

Huawei launches tiny LiteOS to power Internet of Things devices

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 14:07

Huawei launches tiny LiteOS to power Internet of Things devices Major Chinese infrastructure maker Huawei is readying an operating system for Internet of Things devices that is just 10 kilobytes large.

'LiteOS' is the "lightest" software of its kind, says the company, and it will be used to power a large range of smart devices.

The company says it believe that "by 2025, a total of 100 billion connections will be generated globally and two million new sensors will be deployed every hour" but that current networks cannot support such growth.

"Huawei believes that standardizing ICT infrastructure will foster the development of Internet applications, including IoT applications. To address this, Huawei is launching our IoT OS, LiteOS," said Mr. William Xu, Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer at Huawei.

LiteOS will be available to all developers, meaning IoT products could launch in the future built around the tiny OS.

In speaking about the operating system, the company says "LiteOS is the world's most lightweight IoT OS. It is small in size at 10KB and supports zero configuration, auto-discovery, and auto-networking. It can be widely applied to different areas including smart homes, wearable, connected vehicles and other industries. The LiteOS helps to simplify the development of smart hardware to enhance IoT connectivity."

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Video: 'Need For Speed' is making a comeback later this year

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 13:45

Video: 'Need For Speed' is making a comeback later this year EA has published a teaser trailer for this year's reboot of the popular Need For Speed racing series.

The game will be called 'Need for Speed' taking the series back to its basics after years of sequels and spin-offs.

"Need for Speed returns in Fall 2015 to PS4, Xbox One and PC in an action driving experience that unites the culture of speed. The new NFS game will feature deep customization, authentic urban car culture, a nocturnal open world, and an immersive narrative that pulls you through the game,"
reads the bio for the trailer.

Check it out here:

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

LG unveils prototype of OLED panel that is less than 1mm thick

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 13:08

LG unveils prototype of OLED panel that is less than 1mm thick LG Display has unveiled a "wallpaper" OLED panel this week, so thin that it can stick to a wall with just a magnetic mat.

The 55-inch panel is just 0.97mm thick and weighs only 4 pounds, making it easily the lightest and thinnest display out there. LG's current 55-inch OLED panels are "fat" in comparison at 4.3mm thick.

Yeo Sang-deog, the head of LG Display's OLED division, says the company will continue to develop OLED as a primary drivers of revenue and growth. "We should be able to supply a satisfactory volume to our clients from July or August, which means we're hoping to buckle down production as well as promotion from the third quarter," he said.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Asus' Vivowatch is now shipping in Europe

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 21 May 2015 12:49

Asus' Vivowatch is now shipping in Europe Asus' Vivowatch smartwatch has begun shipping in Europe, a month after launching in the U.S.

The fitness watch has a 10-day battery life, a built-in heart rate sensor and features a 'Happiness Index' that bases how happy you are based on the amount of exercise and the quality of your sleep. In addition, there is a motion detector and a UV light sensor and the watch is protected by Gorilla Glass 3.

Vivowatches don't run on Android Wear like most smartwatches, however, instead running a proprietary OS on a monochrome 128x128 pixel screen leading to the extended battery life.

This week, Asus has begun shipping the fitness watch in Europe, priced at 149 euros, significantly cheaper than higher end rivals like the Apple Watch or LG Watch Urbane.

Check out the watch here.





   Older entries  

Latest user comments

News archive