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 CTO.org - News Archive - February 13, 2018
Hold onto your butts, Accord and Camry.

The startup lost $1.1 billion in the fourth quarter, down from $1.46 billion in the previous quarter.

Magic Leap won't detail pricing until it releases its Magic Leap One later this year, but the headset will set you back about the amount that a high-end desktop would.

Commentary: The Trump administration wants to turn half of SNAP benefits into a "Blue Apron-type program." Really, it's a smack in the face of people in need.

SoundCloud's CEO says its invite-only Premier program, which gives artists a share of ad revenue, will include hundreds of thousands of artists in two years.

Please send help.

Like you're going to turn down 14 more horsepower?

A faulty switch could allow vehicles to shift out of park without the brake pedal being depressed.

It's probably just a new color for the Essential Phone.

The old Jetta is dead but VW has rebuilt it to be more modern, cheerful and thrifty and all the other Boy Scout virtues.

Excuse us while we find a quiet place to regain our composure after watching this Ferrari teaser video like nine times.

Obama-era average fuel economy goals are under attack by the current presidential administration, this time due to safety claims based on vehicle weight.

At a counterterrorism conference in Silicon Valley, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen saiys groups like ISIS are finding new footholds online.

Elon Musk's rocket company has been working on getting satellite broadband off the ground for years. A Falcon 9 is set to launch the first test Saturday.

A Korean report says the S9 will get its own 3D emojis.

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From wired to wireless charging
Apple wireless charging AirPower

Image by Apple

The iPhone X is finally here, and among its many attributes, such as Face ID technology, it supports native wireless charging '-" just as the iPhone 8 line does.


Microsoft is working to create a blockchain-based, decentralized digital identity management platform that would allow users to own and secure access to their online persona via an encrypted database hub.

Over the past year, Microsoft said it has been exploring how to use" Blockchain" and other distributed ledger technologies to create new types of digital identities designed to enhance personal privacy, security and control.


The launch of a big Microsoft Windows 10 update like the Fall Creators Update isn'-™t the end of a process '-” it'-™s really just the beginning. As soon as a major update is released, Microsoft quickly gets to work on improving it by fixing bugs, releasing security patches, and occasionally adding new features.

Here we'-™ve summarized what you need to know about every Windows 10 update being released to the public. First come updates to the currently shipping version of Windows 10 '-” version 1709, known as the Fall Creators Update '-” with the most recent updates on top. (Note that the Fall Creators Update is on a phased rollout, so you may not have received it yet.) Below that are updates to version 1703, known as the Creators Update. For each build, we'-™ve included the date of its initial release and a link to Microsoft'-™s announcement about it.


Well, gang, we knew it was inevitable, and now it's actually happening: Here in the land of Android, we are officially talking about the first stream of P leaks.

Hey, it could be worse. Just wait until developers start getting P on their devices.

In all seriousness, though, Android P is inching ever-closer to its actual arrival. The first developers' preview of Android O landed on March 21st last year, 57 days ahead of Google's 2017 I/O convention. This year's I/O event is happening even earlier '-” starting on May 8th '-” and so it's not unreasonable to think the first Android P preview could come out even earlier as well (especially considering that Google has been putting out its previews earlier and earlier every year, regardless).


Apple'-™s password manager for Macs, iPhones and iPads, iCloud Keychain is designed to keep passwords, credit card details, Wi-Fi logins and lots of other critical data safe while also making it much easier for you to create and recall complex passcodes.

What does iCloud Keychain do?

When you enter a new password in Safari, you'-™ve probably seen iCloud Keychain ask if you would like it to save it for use across all your devices. So long as you are running iOS 7.0.3 or later or OS X Mavericks" 10.9 or later, iCloud Keychain will store the following items securely in iCloud. Once secured in iCloud Keychain, you will be able to access all these items securely from any Apple system logged into your Apple ID.


Google has put a July deadline on a 2016 promise that its Chrome browser would tag all websites that don't encrypt their traffic.

"Beginning in July 2018 with the release of Chrome 68, Chrome will mark all HTTP sites as 'not secure,'" wrote Emily Schechter, a Chrome security product manager, in a Feb. 8 post to a company blog.

Google has scheduled Chrome 68 to release in Stable form - analogous to production-level quality - during the week of July 22-28.

Starting then, Chrome will insert a "Not secure" label into the address bar of every website that uses HTTP connections between its servers and users. Sites that instead rely on HTTPS to encrypt the back-and-forth traffic will display their URLs normally in the address bar.


This IT pilot fish has worked as an IT staffer and as a consultant, and he knows there can be some real disadvantages to the better-paid but less stable contracting life.

Case in point: "At one consulting firm, I knew there were communications problems when a peer pulled me aside to talk about the regional manager -- the profit-center guy," says fish.

"My fellow consultant told me, 'The first time he ever called me was to find out if I was really resigning.'

"It was not only the first phone call -- it was the first communication of any kind other than a mailing list!"

Don't be a stranger -- tell Sharky your story. Send me your true tale of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You'll get a stylish Shark shirt if I use it. Comment on today's tale at Sharky's Google+ community, and read thousands of great old tales in the Sharkives.


Windows 10 is the best operating system that's come along from Microsoft in a long time. It's a shape-shifter that changes its interface depending upon whether you're using a traditional computer or a touch-based one. It undoes the damage wrought by Windows 8, including eliminating the awkward Charms bar and bringing back the long-mourned Start menu. A lot more has changed as well, with a new default browser called Edge, the integration of the Cortana digital assistant, links to Microsoft'-™s cloud-based OneDrive cloud storage service and plenty more.

Share this story: IT pros, we hope you'-™ll pass this guide on to your users to show them the Windows 10 ropes. Also see our printable PDF of Windows 10 gestures and shortcuts.


Demand for Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)-based solutions is strong. No question about that, but less obvious are the limits and hidden liabilities of this popular business model.

The vendor data looks impressive. Last October, Microsoft announced commercial users of Office 365 had reached 120 million. Midway through last year, SaaS pioneer Salesforce said it had hit an annual run-rate of more than $10 billion USD. Analysts also confirm this big picture. Market intelligence firm IDC, for instance, expects SaaS to capture nearly two-thirds of the forecast $160 billion USD global public cloud services and infrastructure spend in 2018.


It's pretty much a given every year that" new smartphones will be unveiled at Mobile World Congress. This year's event, which starts Feb. 26 in Barcelona, is expected to be where Samsung shows off its shiny new Galaxy S9.

But that's not likely to be the big story from the 2018 show, according to mobile expert and Computerworld freelancer Dan Rosenbaum.

What's likely to dominate MWC 2018 is the continued rollout of 5G networking. Rosenbaum, who's going to the event, offered a preview of sorts to Computerworld Executive Editor Ken Mingis.


How do smaller wireless carriers compete and win against the powerhouses of the industry like AT&T Mobility, Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile and Sprint. Smaller competitors like US Cellular, Xfinity Mobile, C Spire Wireless and many others face the same challenges, plus one more. Not only must they compete in a rapidly changing industry against the big four, but they are smaller and must also offer the user a compelling reason to choose them.

The CCA is the association that tries to help them do just that. At this year'-™s annual convention in Las Vegas at the end of March, the Mobile Carriers Show is getting ready to help the small and mid-size wireless marketplace. That means networks, carriers, MVNO, handset makers, apps and more. Many of the same players are at this smaller carrier show that are at the larger shows like CTIA and Mobile World Congress.


Microsoft really has gotten its act together in some areas. Take its cloud platform, Microsoft Azure. It'-™s a great cloud. But then there'-™s Windows. As Computerworld'-™s Woody Leonhart reported, '-'we had patches released, yanked, re-released and/or re-re-released on 15 different days in January.'-" Then, there was Windows 10 S.


January 2018 will go down in history as one of the worst patching months in Microsoft'-™s very checkered history. That isn'-™t an isolated muck-up. It'-™s a harbinger. We had a couple of really bad months in 2017 '-”" February and November come immediately to mind '-” but an unconscionable number of patches left bricked machines and busted programs in their wake.


If the sheer quantity of engineering intelligence iFixit has identified in HomePod is eventually matched in Siri support for multiple users and more search domains, then Apple just nailed the smart speaker market.

'We're pretty impressed'

On the same weekend as Loup Ventures found that if you only ask HomePod the questions it is designed to answer, Siri is more effective than Alexa or Cortana, iFixit took a HomePod apart to see what's inside.


The need to manage applications on unmanaged devices owned by employees or contractors is driving adoption of stand-alone mobile app management (MAM) software and services, according to a new Gartner report.

By 2021, 60% of mobile apps being used in the enterprise will rely on at least one app-level management control, whether on managed or unmanaged devices, Gartner's Market Guide for Mobile Application Management said.

Unlike MAM tools that are part of a larger enterprise mobility management (EMM) suite, the use of stand-alone MAM licensing offers lower per-user cost and can be attractive for companies only requiring app management, Gartner said. For other firms, EMM provides the advantage of a single console and policy set.


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BYTE is starting a new series, to bring back the issues you loved in print from 1975 to 1998. Initially we have the first two issues and four others from 1984, 1985 and 1986.

Security experts urge companies to implement two-factor authentication, VPNs, and graduated permission levels to better protect customer data from hackers.

Microsoft admits that it doesn't encrypt all server-to-server communications, opening the way for the NSA and others to access the data flow.

Affordable Care Act site has faced a relatively low volume of attacks, compared with other federal websites.

Google's Gmail app for iPad and iPhone gets new features and iOS 7's design language.

Amazon CTO Werner Vogels announces PostgreSQL database service, new instance types, use of solid state disk to speed I/Os.

As software eclipses hardware, it's dawning on enterprises that they need API programs. Here's where to begin.

Authors Guild's claim of copyright infringement gets shot down in a surprise ruling.

The goal is allow home monitoring devices and mobile health apps communicate more easily healthcare providers.

Google's personal assistant software gets upgraded to better manage owners' lives and understand natural language requests.

Android smartphones owners can now pay for goods and services by tapping their device to Isis terminals at 1.3 million locations nationwide.

LinkedIn pushes customized content with the integration of news curation app Pulse for desktop and mobile versions.

Hacker grabbed 860,000 passwords for fun, but promises not to leak or use them to harm people.

VMware wants to move into cloud computing? Guess what, Amazon's moving into desktop virtualization.

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Acer's Swift 7 is the thinnest laptop in the world.



HTC and Valve'-™s Vive was the first virtual reality headset that really made me jump on the VR hype train. Not only could you escape into virtual worlds, but thanks to its motion tracking sensors, your movement in the real world was translated into the digital. Like Facebook'-™s (FB) Oculus Rift, the Vive'-™s display resolution made individual pixels clearly visible in certain situations, killing any sense of true immersion.



CES 2018 had more than its fair share of wacky items and compelling gadgets, but one of the biggest trends to emerge, once again, from the popular tech expo was voice-enabled devices. And, of course, it was all about Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.



Here are seven items at CES 2018, some of which address legitimate use cases and some of which may be closer to mad-scientist territory.



At CES 2018, Sennheiser announced two new products that focus on recording or playing back 3-D audio.



Honda wants to change your perception of robots. And it's hoping to do so with four new concept robots.



At CES 2018, Ford announced it is working with a city in which it will operate its self-driving cars. The automaker wouldn't identify the city but did say how autonomous vehicles can change the way people live.



Intel is betting that Volocopter 2X will be one of the first passenger-carrying drones to operate in the U.S. A prototype of the pilotless two-seat helicopter-like drone was shown off at CES 2018 in Las Vegas.



AMD CEO Lisa Su told Yahoo Finance that the Austin, Texas-based computer and graphics chip company is quickly working to resolve and address a recently-discovered security flaw that affects AMD computer chips.



Nvidia rolled out a slew of updates for its GeForce line of gaming products at CES 2018 including massive computer screens and cloud game streaming.



It's hard to figure out which of the connected household devices on display at CES 2018 is worth buying, but it's even more difficult to know if they are secure from hackers. A security expert visits exhibits and tries to help.



Nicomi Stewart, a mother in Rochester, New York, is '-'disgusted'-" after an automated call sent to her phone from the city'-™s school district mispronounced her daughter'-™s name as a racial slur.



You may soon get to say a lot more on Twitter. The social media giant announced it is testing a longer character limit. The change will extend the current 140 characters to 280 for all languages except Japanese, Chinese and Korean. Users won'-™t see this change right away, though. Only a small percentage will be testing it at first, and according to the company, it is just a test and there is no guarantee this change will be available to everyone. Via Business Insider:" http://www.businessinsider. ...



Mac OS High Sierra (macOS 10.13)." As the new name suggests, it'-™s just a refinement of last year'-™s Mac OS Sierra. In fact," you" could sum up what's new in an article about as short as" this one.



Want to add some cool sound effects or music to your YouTube video (or any video)?



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