Tech Wrap-Up 10-17-2018, which is National Pasta Day in the United States. There are more than 600 pasta shapes! We wrap up each day with a summary of today’s most engaging stories from the Tech Help Knowledgebase social media feeds. We order the story summaries below by user engagement (posts with the most likes, shares, clicks, hashtag clicks and detail expands) and by the number of impressions they received. Stories are in descending order with the most engaging story at the top. Our human-curated social media feeds include links to technology news, how-to and help articles, and video tutorials for common issues.
Stories curated for our feeds are from our staff writers or culled from third-party sources that produce content related to the categories covered by our site. See the summaries and links below for today’s top stories by user engagement. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and YouTube to interact with our feeds.
Today’s Tech Wrap-Up
1. How can we ensure our tech isn’t spying on us? (ITProPortal)
Cookies are notorious for keeping tabs on our internet surfing. But other means are available for tracking your usage too, like cached content, web storage, and browser fingerprinting. ITProPortal offers some suggestions on how to prevent technology from spying on you. Among them are don’t give access to your personal data to untrusted resources, don’t install applications you don’t trust, and use private browsing but don’t sign into sites that way. Using common sense when it comes to protecting your privacy goes a long way.
Microsoft’s Surface Laptop is more or less a solid gimmick-free laptop, unlike its other Surface counterparts. The Surface Laptop 2 had a Tuesday release date with a starting price of $999. Its unusual fabric-covered keyboard is a remnant from the original model, and it does not have a USB-C port. Don’t expect to run games on it, but its specifications make normal activity a cinch. Compared to the latest MacBook Pro, the keyboard, trackpad, and battery life all seem better — plus it has a touchscreen.
Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are websites that Windows 10 users download as apps from the Microsoft Store. Users launch PWAs from common app areas like their desktop, Start menu, and Action Center. Google released Chrome 70 yesterday with support for PWAs. In much the same fashion, PWAs that run in Chrome utilize native features. Not many PWAs exist yet for Chrome, but app development should ramp up in the near future.
4. How to Do Passwords Right in 2018 (Gizmodo)
Gizmodo explains that “the best passwords are impossible to forget but very difficult to guess.” Experts recommend passphrases that use random words combined with numbers and special characters. Take advantage of new browser tools that not only store passwords but create strong passwords for you. For example, Safari 12 running on macOS Mojave includes a Suggest New Password feature. Password managers like LastPass also generate strong passwords for you and store them. Don’t forget to enable two-factor authentication (2FA) where available, or invest in hardware 2FA security keys like Titan or YubiKey.
5. How Chrome and Firefox could ruin your online business this month (Naked Security)
Google released Chrome 70 this week, and Firefox 63 is due for release next week. What both new versions have in common is they’ll mark sites that use secure certificates signed by Symantec as insecure. If your site happens to be signed by a Symantec cert, the option exists to replace it for free. Replacing it is advisable since Chrome has a 60% market share.
6. Winamp’s comeback story starts this week (TechSpot)
Do you remember how you listened to music online in the early days of the internet? Chances are good you used Winamp. If you miss it, you’re in for a treat. A revamped Winamp is coming out tomorrow, and a mobile music aggregator follows next year.
7. Mozilla warns decryption laws will break opensource (IT News Australia)
Mozilla, an open source organization, would need to close portions of its code to satisfy proposed Australian decryption laws. In doing so, it may risk harming contractual licensing obligations. Also, a provision under the laws could introduce security vulnerabilities into the software.
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Henry Irvine, Contributing Technology Writer, translates more than a decade of internet technology experience in product and customer relationship management into practical help and how-to content. Look for him on Bay Area trails or at the GAMH when he’s not writing. Don’t call him Hank if you see him. Seriously. Hank on Twitter