afternoonbuzz

New Zealand, WordPress, Bing, More: Monday Afternoon Buzz, March 14, 2016

NEW RESOURCES

The government of New Zealand has launched a new site to aggregate product recalls. “Currently product safety recall information is distributed by four different government agencies in New Zealand, dependant on the type of product. Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Paul Goldsmith says the new product recall tool is a first-stop-shop for consumer product recall information.”

TWEAKS & UPDATES

WordPress 4.5 Beta 3 is now available. “New installs default to generating secret keys and salts locally instead of relying on the WordPress.org API.” Yes, thank you!

Bing has made some nifty science updates to its search engine. Get extensive solar system and periodic table information right from the search box!

USEFUL STUFF

Mark Suster has written a blog post called Snapchat 101 for VCs and Old Folks. I call this banana bread writing – not as immediately tasty as the more slick walkthroughs, but it stays with you a lot longer and it’s more nutritious. I am still pegging away at Snapchat (@ResearchBuzz).

From MakeUseOf (I know I link to them a lot, but they do good stuff.) How to edit PDF files online. I wouldn’t edit sensitive things online because you’re basically uploading your PDF files, but things like a company participation form or things like that? Heck yes.

AROUND THE SEARCH AND SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD

Apparently Marissa Mayer wants three years to turn around Yahoo. Considering that she’s been at Yahoo for almost three years already and has made her mark mostly through appalling severance packages (including her own), I don’t know what she’s thinking. She needs to go. I think Yahoo is past saving.

SECURITY/LEGAL ISSUES

Be careful! There’s apparently a lot of ransomware spam going around. “Security firms are warning about a sudden ‘huge’ surge in junk mail messages containing ransomware. The surge is being blamed on the group behind a novel strain of ransomware called Locky. One security firm reported that a version of Locky produced two weeks ago is now the second most prevalent form of ransomware it sees.”

I got an e-mail from one of my tech guys at Real Job(tm) yesterday morning saying Windows 10 had been installed on his computer without his consent. A little while after reading that e-mail, I read this article on Betanews about other people getting Windows 10 without their consent. “It’s likely, of course, that these unwanted installations have happened due to Windows 10 now being a recommended update. If your system is set to install all recommended updates — y’know, for security purposes — then you’ll receive Windows 10.” This stinks. If I could get our company off Windows I would in a heartbeat.

Ewww! A Chrome extension out there is stealing Bitcoin. “According to Bitstamp, a website that lets users exchange Bitcoin for US dollars, this extension contains malicious code that is redirecting payments to its own Bitcoin address, instead of the one intended by the user making the transaction.”

OTHER THINGS I THINK ARE COOL

This is pretty wild – your photocopier doing your translation! “Xerox, however, has done something interesting: its photocopiers are literally like Google Translate IRL. A new service from the company called Xerox Easy Translate lets you scan a document and it’ll plop out the other end in a different language.” Good morning, Internet…

I love your comments, I love your site suggestions, and I love you. Feel free to comment on the blog, or @ResearchBuzz on Twitter. Thanks!

Categories: afternoonbuzz

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