Browser History, Top-Level Domains, Political Ad Transparency, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, February 20, 2019


KnowTechie: Microsoft’s new Timeline Chrome extension will sync your browsing history across Windows 10 devices . “One of the most useful features that Microsoft added to 2018’s Spring Update for Windows 10 was the Timeline function. Having the ability to see your browsing history across Windows 10, iOS, and Android devices is nifty, provided you use Microsoft’s Edge browser on desktop and mobile. Now, you don’t have to give up your Google Chrome addiction to use the Timeline feature, thanks to an official Chrome extension from Microsoft.”

Google Blog: Hello, .dev!. “Developers, designers, writers and architects: you built the web. You make it possible for the billions of people online today to do what they do. Have you ever tried to register your preferred domain name, only to find out it’s not available? Today, Google Registry is announcing .dev, a brand new top-level domain (TLD) that’s dedicated to developers and technology. We hope .dev will be a new home for you to build your communities, learn the latest tech and showcase your projects—all with a perfect domain name.” Just for giggles I did a site:dev search on Google and there’s already a ton of them.

Neowin: Twitter expands political ad transparency tools to EU, India, and Australia . “Twitter has announced that it’s bringing political ad rules to European Union member states, India, and Australia, following a rollout last year in the United States. The transparency effort consists of the Political Campaigning Policy, which defines political content, and the Ads Transparency Center (ATC), where users can dig into information about political advertisers.”


MakeUseOf: 5 Google Drive Tools For Better Docs, Spreadsheets, Slides, and More . “Today, you can do just about anything with Google Drive. Storage and collaborating on documents in the cloud are old-fangled. Think more creatively and you can find a way to do it on Google Drive or tap into the huge habitat of third-party Drive apps that have flourished around it. Here are five such tools if you want to start thinking beyond simple documents, spreadsheets, and slides.”


BBC: YouTube backtracks after Pokemon ‘child abuse’ ban. “Google has backtracked after ‘mistakenly’ deleting the accounts of several prominent YouTubers over incorrect child abuse fears. Popular YouTubers Mystic7, Trainer Tips and Marksman, who have more than 3.5 million subscribers between them, were among those who had their accounts deleted after posting videos of themselves playing Pokemon GO.” Wow, this is a Facebook-level content removal goof.

The Sociable: Social media is the new dais for Asian elections. “Asian countries, such as India, Thailand, and Indonesia are all starting an election year and are banking on social media and tech to draw in the votes. Here we take a look at the role of social media platforms in upcoming elections throughout Asia.”

New York Times: YouTube Unleashed a Conspiracy Theory Boom. Can It Be Contained?. “Last month, the YouTube star Shane Dawson uploaded his new project: a 104-minute documentary, ‘Conspiracy Theories With Shane Dawson.’ In the video, set to a spooky instrumental soundtrack, Mr. Dawson unspooled a series of far-fetched hypotheses. Among them: that iPhones secretly record their owners’ every utterance; that popular children’s TV shows contain subliminal messages urging children to commit suicide; that the recent string of deadly wildfires in California was set on purpose, either by homeowners looking to collect insurance money or by the military using a type of high-powered laser called a ‘directed energy weapon.'”


Washington Post: Password managers have a security flaw. But you should still use one.. “A new study has identified security flaws in five of the most popular password managers. Now for some counterintuitive advice: I still think you should use a password manager. So do the ethical hackers with Independent Security Evaluators who came to me with news of the flaws — and other security pros I spoke to about the study, published Tuesday. You wouldn’t stop using a seat belt because it couldn’t protect you from every kind of vehicle accident. The same applies to password managers.” Or maybe don’t use the Windows 10 app for a password manager?

TechCrunch: India’s state gas company leaks millions of Aadhaar numbers . “Another security lapse has exposed millions of Aadhaar numbers. This time, India’s state-owned gas company Indane left exposed a part of its website for dealers and distributors, even though it’s only supposed to be accessible with a valid username and password. But the part of the site was indexed in Google, allowing anyone to bypass the login page altogether and gain unfettered access to the dealer database.”

The Hacker News, with a side of “good grief” (this issue has been fixed, though): How to Hack Facebook Accounts? Just Ask Your Targets to Open a Link. “It’s 2019, and just clicking on a specially crafted URL would have allowed an attacker to hack your Facebook account without any further interaction. A security researcher discovered a critical cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerability in the most popular social media platform that could have been allowed attackers to hijack Facebook accounts by simply tricking the targeted users into clicking on a link.”


Mashable: Instagram, Twitch, and other platforms helped creators make nearly $7 billion, study says. “Creators in the U.S. are earning more than ever on internet platforms like Instagram, YouTube, and Tumblr — nearly $7 billion, according to a new study. The sprawling 97-page report by the Re:Create Coalition analyzes how many people in the U.S. are creating online content, where in the country they’re located, and how much they are earning. According to the study, nearly 17 million Americans earned an estimated $6.8 billion across nine internet platforms in 2017.”

British Science Week: Our partnership for 2019: Operation Weather Rescue. “This year, our Zooniverse citizen science partnership is with Operation Weather Rescue. They’re a team of researchers who are working tirelessly to digitize old weather records. Their project utilises the tried and tested method of people power; drawing on invaluable help from members of the public by asking them to enter pieces of historical weather information into their database. For British Science Week, we have identified two decades of important historical weather data that has never been digitised – and we need your help to rectify this.” Good morning, Internet…

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Categories: morningbuzz

2 replies »

  1. .dev

    I visited the site you linked to, thank you. I was unable to get the search box to accept any domain name. I went to namecheap, no luck there until I used the online support. A domain name in .dev costs…..


    A bit out of my budget. Namecheap tells me it will drop way down, just wait. Might get as low as $150. .io, for instance, is $30.

    Thanks for letting me know I am not in the upper tier! Best, wishes, Carl

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