April 20, 2012 in News

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Stay Safe During the Last-Minute Holiday Rush: Protect Your Data When Shopping

December 23, 2014 in News, TechCocktail

The holiday rush is here, but that doesn’t mean you should skimp on security. Being with your loved ones and giving gifts is a major part of this time of year. But, before giving any present, one has to buy them. Knowing this, hackers and cyber criminals take advantage of the rise in online shopping to attack and steal money and personal information from shoppers.

This phenomenon is obviously not constricted to the holidays, and it does happen throughout the year. But it’s especially noticeable now, when people tend to use the Internet for their shopping; this makes them easy targets for experienced hackers. But there are some simple steps that, when taken, can really make a difference in security.

A great deal of online navigation is made utilizing cookies. They are small pieces of data, stored in web browsers, that allow for websites to keep a sort of “state information”, using cookies to record previous visits from a specific user, to know that user’s preferences, keep the user’s items in the shopping cart on subsequent visits, and so on.

While cookies cannot carry viruses or install malware, they can indeed be tracked. Hackers with access to cookies can know someone’s habits and, on insecure websites, even get some important information like credit card data. With this in mind, experts recommend that online shopping should be done using Virtual Machines, much harder to track and break, or to stop the use of cookies on sensitive sites.

Yet another option is to use a software with cookie cleaning capabilities, like CCleaner. Amongst other features, this software can clean cookies from several different browsers for good, much like what a paper shredding service does with physical documents.

But there is more to it. If your computer is under attack, hackers can possibly gain access to the files stored on a computer’s hard drive, compromising the integrity of your data, so users should always try to be one step ahead. When dealing with offline files, people think that a simple deletion will suffice, but that is hardly the case.

However, when a file is deleted, only the reference of the file is removed from the file system table, while the file remains on the disk until another file is created over it. In truth, even after that it might be possible to recover data, by studying the magnetic fields on the disk platter surface.

This is when a software like Eraser comes handy. Eraser is an advanced security tool that allows users to safely delete files from their drives, that gets this security by overwriting those files or folders several times, making it almost impossible for anyone to recover them using the methods mentioned above.

After Google Files Suit, Mississippi’s AG Calls For “Cooler Heads”

December 23, 2014 in News, TechCrunch

android statutes google The slap fight between Google and the state of Mississippi has reached what could be its conclusion. It seems that Google will win its battle against a wide-ranging subpoena filed by a state employee, which it thinks exceeds the jurisdiction of the filing party. Read More

KipstR: Wearable That Records Your Shows When You Fall Asleep Watching TV

December 23, 2014 in News, TechCocktail

Who hasn’t fallen asleep on their couch watching their favorite TV show? Wouldn’t it be nice to have your TV automatically record it the moment you dozed off, so you can pick up where you left off the next day? That’s the idea behind KipstR, a wristband that will automatically set a TiVo box to record whenever the wearer falls asleep in front of the box.

Virgin Media have teamed up with two students at Manchester Creative Studio, as part of their Switched on Futures initiative. Ryan Oliver, 15, and Jonathan Kingsley, 14  developed the 3D printed wristband which uses a pulse-oximeter to sense if the wearer is asleep or awake and then mimics the users’ TiVo remote control to pause, record, or resume a show appropriately.


According to research, 18% of people are expected to fall asleep on the sofa on Christmas Day. Turkey does have the makings of a natural sedative in i­t, an amino acid called tryptophan. So you can already see how this can be very useful during the holiday.

“Building KipstR with Virgin Media was a brilliant challenge for us but we’ve learnt so much and are really pleased with the end result,” Ryan said. “And to top it off I now know what to get my dad for Christmas as he is always nodding off in front of the TV!”

For now, you may have to wait for next Christmas to get your dad this gift, but you can sign up for the trial.



Now he’s in REAL trouble! Snowden sued by the former secretary of the Kansas Dept of Transport

December 23, 2014 in News, Pando Daily


Here’s a new one: Horace Edwards, the former secretary of the Kansas Department of Transportation, has filed a lawsuit against Edward Snowden, Laura Poitras, and others involved with “Citizenfour,” a film about the National Security Agency whistleblower.

The lawsuit seeks to ensure “that ill-gotten gains are disgorged” in an effort to deter “breaches of fiduciary duty, [address] irreparable damage to the safety of the American people and [prevent] dangerous disruption of foreign affairs due to irresponsible conduct of disloyal government operatives and entertainment industry collaborators.”

Edwards defends the suit by saying that it doesn’t infringe on First Amendment rights. Instead, it “seeks relief against those who profiteer by pretending to be journalists and whistleblowers but in effect are evading the law and betraying their country.” (Because revealing unethical, and perhaps illegal, programs is “pretending” to be a journalist.)

TechDirt notes that Edwards’ claim of not censoring anyone is only technically true:

If successful, [Edwards’] lawsuit would have a chilling effect on future reporting pertaining to whistleblowers and/or leaked documents. If he somehow manages to prove that Snowden’s breach of contract makes him and his “benefactors” responsible for money spent by the US government’s damage control, this will deter both future reporting and future whistleblowers from making any information public.

Judging by the vitriol shown in the lawsuit, Edwards would probably be just fine with that result. As the Hollywood Reporter notes in its report on the nigh-unbelievable suit:

Edwards is clearly upset by Snowden’s actions, calling them ‘dishonorable and indefensible and not the acts of a legitimate whistleblower,’ as well as by Hollywood for ‘omit[ting] from the storyline’ perceived acts of foreign espionage, and Poitras for doing things like ‘hiding [Snowden] in her hotel room while he changes into light disguise, accepting all of the purloined information to use for her personal benefit financially and professionally, filming Defendant Snowden’s meeting with a lawyer in Hong Kong as he tries to seek asylum…’

Welcome to America, where the former secretary of the Kansas Department of Transportation can file a lawsuit against one of the world’s most wanted men in response to the deep, deep anger he feels about… knowing the government is spying on millions of people around the world. I can’t wait to see how this one turns out.

Spoiler: probably not the way Edwards wants, since he’s seeking “billions of dollars” in damages and “Citizenfour” hasn’t exactly become a Hollywood blockbuster, Snowden hasn’t (to anyone’s knowledge) sold secrets, and even the journalists who privatized the documents he leaked did so with the backing of a capricious, and thrifty, billionaire.

Nathaniel Mott

Nathaniel Mott is a staff writer for PandoDaily, covering startups and technology from New York.

Devialet’s Hi-Tech “Phantom” Implosion Stereo Sounds Better Than Speakers 20X Its Size

December 22, 2014 in News, TechCrunch

Phantom Gif FInal You need a big sub-woofer for big bass, right? Wrong. After 10 years of research, French acoustic engineers as Devialet just unveiled a giant step forward in audio that’s just one foot long. The Phantom is a petite, spherical, all-in-one amplifier and speaker that delivers what audiophiles think may be the best sound in the world for around $2,000. Read More

4moms Has Launched the World’s First App-Controlled Infant Seat

December 22, 2014 in News, TechCocktail

4moms, the Pittsburgh, PA-based company that makes high-tech baby gear, has launched its the world’s first app-controlled infant seat. Called the mamaRoo, the infant seat by the robotics company is an upgrade to its previous mamaRoo line.


“Through valuable insights gained from consumers, 4moms develops baby gear that addresses common pain points,” said 4moms CEO Rob Daley in a statement. “Parents have been asking us for a remote, so they can adjust the mamaRoo without disturbing their baby while they rest or play. We’ve delivered that benefit with the new 4moms app.”

4moms’s mamaRoo is an infant seat that gives parents the flexibility to provide different positions and motions for their infants – unlike other infant seats currently on the market. The technology behind the mamaRoo was created through research conducted by mamaRoo, in which they attached accelerometer vests to parents, recording the natural motion patterns through which parents soothed their infants. Such motions include “Car Ride”, “Kangaroo”, “Tree Swing”, “Rock-a-Bye”, and “Wave” and mimic the real-life motions for which they’re aptly named. The mamaRoo also features a built-in sound system that can play nature sounds (such as the sound of a heartbeat) or give parents the option to plug-in their own music through an mp3 hook-up.

This latest version of the mamaRoo, though, is the first time an infant seat has been created with the added functionality of being controlled from a smartphone app. Available through both iOS or Android, parents can take full control of the mamaRoo through the convenience of their phones.

Learn more about 4moms’s mamaRoo.

What the Future of Fitness Trackers Looks Like

December 22, 2014 in Entrepreneur Magazine, News

Experts say to expect only more sophistication as the technology evolves.

LIVE at 5pm Pacific: The PandoLIVE Christmas Special!

December 22, 2014 in News, Pando Daily


It’s almost time for a very special PandoLIVE — a Christmas / End of Year special — starting at 5pm Pacific right here.

On tonight’s show, Sarah and I will take a last look back at some of the big stories of 2014, and of course this week’s breaking news. We’ll also have a sneak preview of The War Nerd Christmas Special, which goes live on Pando on Christmas Day. Also: Christmas music!

Listener “Kevin from Bangkok” writes…

The return of the podcast is very welcome. It’s put your eXiled content back on the radar with a weird Venn diagram intersection of people I know and spurred discussion. The people you guys have been fighting with basically stepping on banana peels left and right hasn’t hurt – congrats on everyone’s being largely right there and for getting some credit for it.

One podcast request:

  • Please ban the following phrases:
    • Can I just say…
    • Can I just tell you…
    • Can I say…
    • Let me just tell you…
    • I’d like to say…
    • Let me just say…
    • All I’m saying is…
    • I’m just saying…
    • I should just say…

As you can see, pretty much anything with any conjugation of the verb say or tell and then any first person pronoun.

Otherwise, doing well. The updated soundboard quotes and the Rackspace pisstakes are a nice addition. It’s great to hear Ames and others chatting as well as some of the new faces.

Best of luck and it’s good to see you back on the radar in this weird segment of the world!


Thanks Kevin! Almost no chance we stop using any of those phrases but — tell you what — I’ll put $10 in a swear jar for every time we do on tonight’s show. Proceeds to a charity chosen live on air by listeners.

Join us at 5pm! Right here!

Paul Carr

Paul Carr is editorial director of Pando. Previously he was founder and editor in chief of NSFWCORP.

6 Tips for How to Sell More in Less Time

December 22, 2014 in Entrepreneur Magazine, News

Don't waste hours on a project or prospect unlikely to produce returns.

The Blackberry Classic Is A Noble Throwback To The QWERTY Era

December 22, 2014 in News, TechCrunch

scaled-5059 “You think you’ve got it/ Oh, you think you’ve got it/ But got it just don’t get it when there’s nothin’ at all.” Fast forward. It’s a week until 2015. Blackberry is on the ropes. The effort to bring Waterloo’s pride into this decade has largely fallen flat. New devices, slabs of glass with touchscreen keyboards, rule the day. And the… Read More