AfterDawn: Tech news

News written by Petteri Pyyny

AfterDawn: News

AfterDawn's 19th birthday

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 10 Jun 2018 4:35

AfterDawn's 19th birthday Wow, yet another year has passed and we're once again celebrating our site's birthday. This hobby-project-gone-mad of ours is officially 19 years old as of today.

It is absolutely mind-boggling to think that when our site was launched back in 1999, the most popular search engine in the world was AltaVista, term "social media" meant something like watching TV with your friends in same living room and millions of people were still using modems to connect to the Internet.

During these years, we've seen it all: the good times, the bad times and the absolutely horrific times (bursting of the dot-com bubble wasn't pretty..). But we're still here.

Technologies have changed - we started AfterDawn as a source of information for people interested in MP3 technology and software.. The ways how people consume news have changed: nowadays more than half of online traffic is mobile and social media is the force that drives the traffic to websites.

But over the years, we've adapted. During the past 12 months, we've switched our site to use HTTPS, meaning that all the communcation between your browser and our site is now encrypted and secure. Couple of months ago, we finally launched our official AfterDawn app for Android to make it easier to read our news with your phone.

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

Microsoft to acquire GitHub

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 04 Jun 2018 2:42

Microsoft to acquire GitHub Several sources claim that Microsoft is about to announce its acquisition of GitHub later today.

GitHub is a de facto open source distribution and code management service for thousands and thousands of developers and open source projects. Site allows anyone to start a Git code repository for free, invite others to participate and to manage the project development.

For end users, it is also the place to download the latest releases of various open source projects.

According to sources, including Bloomberg, Microsoft has been in talks with GitHub to buy the company. Sources claim that the discussions have reached the point where Microsoft is about to announce its acquisition of GitHub later today.

GitHub's latest funding round back in 2015 valued the company at $2 billion. While Bloomberg doesn't state the price the Microsoft is willing to pay for the service, it is highly likely that the price is much higher than the 2015 valuation.





AfterDawn: News

Serious WhatsApp bug found - allows blocked contacts to send messages

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 24 May 2018 5:12

Serious WhatsApp bug found - allows blocked contacts to send messages Serious and potentially very annoying bug has been found in latest WhatsApp version. The bug allows previously blocked contacts to send messages and to see user's online status ("last seen").

Quite many people are familiar with the concept of permanently blocking annoying contacts who harass them via various online services. And just like most other such services, WhatsApp has easy ways to block unwanted contacts from contacting you.

However, now the previously set blocks have been, for unknown reason, failed and messages from previously blocked users have managed to come through.

WhatsApp itself hasn't announced the problem yet, but there seems to be an easy fix for this annoyance: unblock the previously blocked people and block them again. This seems to solve the problem.

The bug seems to be affecting both, iOS and Android users.





AfterDawn: News

IBM: All current encryption methods will be broken "instantly" in 5 years' time

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 22 May 2018 3:32

IBM: All current encryption methods will be broken "instantly" in 5 years' time Head of IBM Research, Arvind Krishna, attended a panel discussion in San Francisco last week and shared his thoughts about quantum computing and current ancryption methods.

Quantum computing, a concept developed since 1980s, has taken massive leaps forward during the past couple of years, as technologies have advanced. Quantum computing isn't a "holy grail" for all kinds of computer solutions, but it is a technology that is extremely powerful in handling massive, large numbers. The problem? All modern encryption techniques are based on large numbers, namely, large prime numbers.

According to Mr. Krishna, in just five years' time, the quantum computers will be able to break even the strongest, "military-grade" encryptions instantly. This includes the "most secure" versions of AES and more.

Now, luckily, there seems to be a solution. So-called Lattice-based cryptography already exists and is considered to be "quantum-computing-safe". Thus, Mr. Krishna suggests that "if you want to keep your data secret ten years from now, you should change your encryption technology".





AfterDawn: News

Some of the Android P secrets revealed: Bye-bye third button, welcome new battery saver options, ..

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 08 May 2018 10:34

Some of the Android P secrets revealed: Bye-bye third button, welcome new battery saver options, .. Google's annual developer conference Google I/O is about to start soon. Google usually reveals most of the new features coming to its next Android version at this event.

However, this time around it seems that at least some of those secrets have been revealed already - by a Philippines-based Google+ user who has shared tons of screenshots of the upcoming Android P Developer Preview 2 operating system version.

Bye-bye app switcher button



Most obvious change that will come with Android P is the disappearance of the third navigation button. The app switcher button ("the square") will disappear and will be replaced by home button ("the circle") gestures.

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

AfterDawn's own Android app updated: Night mode added, bugs fixed

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 08 May 2018 7:34

AfterDawn's own Android app updated: Night mode added, bugs fixed AfterDawn's official Android app has been updated. The new version, v1.50, now has the most-requested new feature: night mode (aka dark theme) for those of us who like to read news when it is way past the bedtime.

New version also fixes bunch of various little bugs and should stabilize the app quite a lot.

Through our app, you can access our news archives to all the way back to the 1999 when our site was founded. And of course, the app is completely free - and it doesn't require any suspicious permissions or anything like that.

So, go ahead and give it a try:

AfterDawn's official Android app


Currently our app's rating is pretty decent 4.6/5.0 stars, so you guys seem to genuinely like it. If you have any ideas on how to improve, let us know.





AfterDawn: News

Single message will freeze your WhatsApp - or even your entire phone

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 07 May 2018 4:18

Single message will freeze your WhatsApp - or even your entire phone There's a nasty, malicious WhatsApp message spreading across the World that can freeze WhatsApp - or even your entire phone.

One of these messages is masked as a challenge and reads "If you touch the black point then your whatsapp will hang" - and if you do touch the black spot, your WhatsApp does exactly what the message "promises" it will.

The other message says "This is very interesting" and has a cry/laugh emoji. Tapping that message will have similar consequences.

Why such messages crash WhatsApp?



The message itself might seem short, but in reality, it consists thousands and thousands of encoded character in it that are just hidden, as they're mostly text directionality symbols, instructing which way to output the text. Thus, opening up such message will simply cause a memory leak in WhatsApp - and in some cases, with your phone.

So, never trust weird WhatsApp messages from people you don't know about.





AfterDawn: News

Serious vulnerability found in 7-Zip - update now!

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 04 May 2018 5:14

Serious vulnerability found in 7-Zip - update now! Center for Internet Security has found a serious vulnerability in popular open-source (de-)compression tool, 7-Zip.

The vulnerability allows execution of malicious code, access to computer's files and user profiles. Further details of the vulnerability are listed on Center for Internet Security's website.

The good news is that there's already an update available for 7-Zip that will patch the vulnerability. Versions v18.05 and above are safe and patched.

You can download the latest, patched version of 7-Zip from our download servers:

7-Zip (64-bit Windows)
7-Zip (32-bit Windows)

...or through /-Zip's homepage.





AfterDawn: News

Twitter: Change your password immediately! Over 300M accounts at risk

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 04 May 2018 3:18

Twitter: Change your password immediately! Over 300M accounts at risk Twitter has found a bug in its systems that logged users' passwords in plain text format to its log files. As web services should never store passwords in human-readable format, but instead, use "hashed with salt" approach to store them, the finding is significant.

Now Twitter asks all its users to change their passwords as soon as possible. According to Twitter, there are no signs whatsoever that the passwords have actually leaked, but as such a possibility cannot be totally ruled out, it is recommended to change the passwords.

Obviously the problem is even worse if user uses the same email address / password combination on other services. Nowadays users are strongly urged to use unique passwords for all different services, but as people are lazy, it is still very common to use same login details across many services.

In such a case, one should change passwords on all such web sites and services.

We encourage users to use password managers - they'll recommend good passwords for you and will also remember all your passwords and keep them in strongly encrypted password lockers. One good (and free) such tool is KeePass.





AfterDawn: News

WhatsApp will soon ban users who are under 16

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 25 Apr 2018 1:41

WhatsApp will soon ban users who are under 16 WhatsApp will soon start banning users who are under 16 year old. The change is related to European Union's GDPR legislation and how WhatsApp has decided to implement it.

The change will affect only those who live in European Union. Previously the age limit in Europe has been 13. The upcoming GDPR privacy legislation doesn't require companies to raise the age limit, but it has special clauses aimed at protecting minors. Thus, Facebook - who owns WhatsApp - has decided that it is easiest to simply raise the age limit across Europe.

Ibn coming weeks users of WhatsApp within European Union will be faced with a questionnaire asking for their age and also to agree with new, GDPR-compliant terms of service.

GDPR is one of the biggest privacy legislation changes in the World, giving EU citizens rights to their data and restricts how companies can use the data they have collected.

GDPR gives EU member states the right to choose the age of data handling consent (when the person is deemed capable of giving consent for companies to have his/her data collected) to be between 13 and 16 years, but apparently Facebook/WhatsApp has decided that it is easier to simply raise the age limit to 16 all across European Union rather than to deal each country's age limit separately.





AfterDawn: News

iPhone 5S gets iOS12 update after all?

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 21 Apr 2018 8:21

iPhone 5S gets iOS12 update after all? For many years, the Autumn release of new iOS operating system update has also meant that at least one of the iPhone models will be cut off from receiving the latest OS version, officially killing the product's support.

As the inevitable iOS 12 update is approaching, the next in line to be retired would be iPhone 5S, released back in 2013.

However, it seems that there's going to be a change to the familiar pattern and none of the iPhone models would be cut off this time around. At least if believe this Reddit discussion where a redditor had found out that latest WebKit tests specifically state that iPhone 5S running on iOS 12 is part of the test suite.

If true, the change would make iPhone 5S the most updated iPhone model ever. It has gone through five major iOS updates and if iOS 12 really comes to it, it would be the phone's sixth major iOS version.

iPhone 5S was released in September, 2013. If the iOS 12 really supports iPhone 5S, the model's lifespan would be more than half a decade.





AfterDawn: News

Oops! Russia tries to block Telegram - blocks thousands of innocent addresses (and Telegram still works)

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 18 Apr 2018 7:14

Oops! Russia tries to block Telegram - blocks thousands of innocent addresses (and Telegram still works) Russia has banned popular messaging app Telegram and tries to block it as well as it can. This week, Russia blocked tens of thousands of IP addresses in order to block its citizens' access to Telegram - and failed.

At first, Russia's communication authority Roskomnadzor blocked tens of thousands of IP addresses that belong to Amazon's cloud services. Later, Roskomnadzor blocked yet another bunch of IP addresses, thus time those that are used by Google's cloud services.

The result?

Now Russians cannot access to thousands of unrelated web services, online games and more. Even some Russian banks are on the block list.

And yes, Roskomnadzor own website was hosted on one of the blocked IP addresses, too, so it wont work either..


Read more...




AfterDawn: News

Samsung introduces smart phone without Internet connectivity

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 18 Apr 2018 5:54

Samsung introduces smart phone without Internet connectivity Samsung has released a weird, weird little phone. Company's latest smartphone doesn't have any form of Internet connectivity at all.

The phone, Samsung Galaxy J2 Pro simply cannot be connected to the Net. It has decent 2600mAh battery, 1.5GB RAM and 16GB internal storage and decent 8Mpix camera (and 2Mpix front camera).

Oddity is aimed at Samsung's home market, Korea. Company targets elderly people with the product, trying to make the phone easier to grasp than most smart phones. Samsung also suggests that the phone could be perfect for students who want to avoid interruptions through social media and instant messaging.

Phone retails for appx 150 / $185, which seems bit steep for a phone without any form of online capabilities. But there's a unique option there, too: Samsung promises to give full refund to those who purchase a more expensive Samsung phone after the school year in Korea ends.

Read more...




AfterDawn: News

AfterDawn's official Android app updated

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 11 Apr 2018 1:40

AfterDawn's official Android app updated AfterDawn's own official Android app has been updated. The new version, v1.10, is now available.

After the initial launch of our own app, we've focused on fixing bugs that have crashed the app in certain cases. Thus, the new version is mostly a quick bugfix to known problems.

The app's stability rate has been bit over 99 percent, but we obviously aim to make the app as stable as possible.

Furthermore, the new version also improves both, search and "news by tag" listings, making them "infinite". Being infinite means that once you reach the bottom of the news list, the app will load more (older) content for the results, allowing you to search through our entire news database of 19 years.

The app is free, doesn't require any specific persmissions and includes all of our news ever released - ever since 1999.

Get it now:

AfterDawn app for Android





AfterDawn: News

Hackers remove Despacito from YouTube

Written by Petteri Pyyny @ 10 Apr 2018 8:08

Hackers remove Despacito from YouTube Hackers that call themselves Prosox and Kuroi'shi have successfully hacked YouTube. They managed to remove the most successful music video of all time, Despacito.

Before removal, hackers managed to change the video's thumbnail images to gang members from the show Casa de Papel.

Despacito, a song by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee was the first video ever to reach more than 5 billion views in YouTube.

Also some other music videos were removed by the same group - all of them were added to YouTube's VEVO music video service.






Actively discussed topics

News archive