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Harry Potter Series Now Available As E-Books

An article from CNN.

Finally, fans of the world’s most famous boy wizard can follow his fight against the evil Lord Voldemort on their e-readers.

The entire “Harry Potter” series is now available in digital form atPottermore, author J.K. Rowling’s website for all things Potter, ending what was easily the biggest e-book holdout in the literary world.

The books come in a downloadable format that is compatible with all leading e-readers, tablets, personal computers and smartphones — including Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes & Noble’s Nook. Readers seeking the e-books on Amazon or Barnes & Noble’s site will be directed to Pottermore to buy them.

“For years our customers have loved reading Harry Potter books in print, and have made them the best-selling print book series on Amazon.com,” said Russ Grandinetti, Amazon’s vice president of Kindle content. “We’re excited that Harry Potter fans worldwide are now able to read J.K. Rowling’s fantastic books on their Kindles and free Kindle reading apps.”

“By offering the NOOK editions of this popular series, long-time fans and first-time readers can experience the magic of Harry Potter in a new, exciting way and read what they love, anywhere they like,” offered Jim Hilt, Vice President of e-books for Barnes & Noble.

All seven books in the series will be available in English, at prices ranging from $7.99 to $9.99, through an agreement with Pottermore.

Rowling didn’t agree to make the books available digitally at all until last year, a full 14 years after the first, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone,” was published. (It was published in the United States as “Sorcerer’s Stone” the following year).

“I wanted to give something back to the fans that have followed Harry so devotedly over the years, and to bring the stories to a new digital generation,” the British author said last year in an announcement on YouTube. “I hope fans and those new to Harry will have as much fun helping to shape Pottermore as I have.”

The content side of the Pottermore site, which promises users an interactive journey through the Harry Potter universe, is still in beta testing. It’s scheduled to go live in April.

Not always a fan of the latest technology, Rowling famously wrote the Potter series by hand. Through the years, Rowling and her representatives expressed two reasons for being slow to the e-book world: a fear of online piracy and the desire for readers to experience her books the old-fashioned way.

The Harry Potter books have sold more than 400 million copies and been translated into more than 60 languages.

Tuesday’s e-book launch is the second time Rowling has made news in recent weeks.

Apple Receives Complaints That The New iPad Is Heating Up

APPLE’s latest hot ticket seems to be a tad too hot to hold, some users are reporting. New iPad owners on the MacRumors forums and Apple’s own support community complain that the slab’s lower left corner can get a little warm during extended use. Don’t get excited though, reports seem to vary by user — some are reporting that their tablet becomes too uncomfortable to hold while others say that it only gets “slightly warm” and that it’s “expected.” How’s your new iPad treating you? Click on through to the comments and let us know.

iTunes Changes Song Preview

Earlier today, Apple iTunes changed the song preview duration. Previously, you could listen to a song for about 1:30 before purchasing the song. Now, they made a switch back to the 30 second preview. You now have one minute less to decide if you like the song and if you would like to purchase it.

Security Camera Error Exposes Video Feeds

FEEDS from thousands of Trendnet home security cameras have been breached, allowing any web user to access live footage of their camera without needing a password.

Internet addresses which link to the video streams have been posted to a variety of popular messageboard sites.Users have expressed concern after finding they could view children’s bedrooms, among other locations. US-based Trendnet says it is in the process of releasing updates to correct a coding error introduced in 2010.

It said it had emailed customers who had registered affected devices to alert them to the problem. However, a spokesman told the BBC that “roughly 5%” of purchasers had registered their cameras and it had not yet issued a formal media release – despite being aware of the problem for more than three weeks.

“We first became aware of this on 12 January,” said Zak Wood, Trendnet’s director of global marketing.

“As of this week we have identified 26 [vulnerable] models. (In) seven of the models, the firmware has been tested and released.

“We anticipate to have all of the revised firmware available this week. We are scrambling to discover how the code was introduced and at this point it seems like a coding oversight.”

Mr Wood added that the California-based firm estimated that “fewer than 1,000 units” might be open to this threat in the UK, but could not immediately provide an exact global tally beyond saying that it was “most likely less than 50,000”.

Tech news website The Verge first publicised the issue last week after discovering a blog which had published details of the vulnerability on 10 January. The author discovered that after setting up one of the cameras with a password, its video stream became accessible to anyone who typed in the correct net address.

Trendnet says it is in the process of releasing firmware updates for its devices. In each case, this consisted of the user’s IP address followed by an identical sequence of 15 characters.

The writer then showed how the Shodan search engine – which specialises in finding online devices – could be used to discover cameras vulnerable to the flaw. “Last I ran this there was something like 350 vulnerable devices that were available,” the author wrote at the time. However, it appears that others then took advantage of the technique to expose other links and uploaded them to the net. Within two days, a list of 679 web addresses had been posted to one site, and others followed – in some cases listing the alleged Google Maps locations associated with each camera.

Messages on one forum included: “Someone caught a guy in denmark (traced to ip) getting naked in the bathroom.” Another said: “I think this guy is doing sit-ups.” One user wrote “baby spotted”, causing another to comment: “I feel like a paedophile watching this.”

Some screenshots have also been uploaded.

The firm – whose slogan is “networks that people trust” – said it had halted shipments of affected products to retailers and that any delivery received since the start of this month should be safe. However, it said that items delivered at an earlier date might need a firmware update.

“We are just getting to that point to be able to succinctly convey more information to the public who would be concerned,” said Mr Wood.

“We are planning an official release of information to the public concerning this, but in advance I can tell you that this week we are targeting to have firmware to all affected models.”

At the time of interview, Trendnet’s home page and its press release section made no mention of the problem.

However, a warning was lated added to its front page linking to a statement that says: “It is Trendnet’s understanding that video from select Trendnet IP cameras may be accessed online in real time. Upon awareness of the issue, Trendnet initiated immediate actions to correct and publish updated firmware which resolves the vulnerability.”

Motorola Forgot To Delete Secret Information Off Xoom

MOTOROLA (NYSE: MMI) has publicly announced that about 100 Xoom devices were not cleared of all of the original owners content during the refurbishing process. About 100 Motorola Xooms were sold to Woot.com between October to December 2011 were the only tablets affected. According to Motorola, any information may be vulnerable, including: photographs, documents, passwords, usernames and more.

In their press release, they deeply apologized: “Motorola sincerely regrets and apologizes for any inconvenience this situation has caused the affected customers. Motorola is committed to rigorous data protection practices in order to protect its customers, and will continue to take the necessary steps to achieve this objective.”

Motorola is offering customers who purchased and then returned a Motorola XOOM Wi-Fi tablet to Amazon.com, Best Buy, BJ’s Wholesale, eBay, Office Max, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, or Staples and a few other independent retailers between March and October 2011 a complimentary two-year membership of Experian’s ProtectMyID Alert to mitigate any risks. Original owners are advised to contact Experian at 1-866-926-9803 to sign up for the credit monitoring service. These original owners are also advised to take precautionary measures to protect their identity, such as changing their email and social media passwords. Original owners who performed a factory data reset prior to returning the device are not impacted.

If you purchased a refurbished Motorola XOOM Wi-Fi tablet from Woot.com between October and December 2011 you are encouraged to visit motorola.com/xoomreturn or to call Motorola Mobility Customer Support at 1-800-734-5870, select Option 1, in order to determine if their tablet is affected.

To view the Press release from Motorola, please visit this site: http://preview.tinyurl.com/7amzn3p

Intercepted FBI Phone Call About Anonymous

THE hacking group Anonymous is back. Anonymous has released a tape of a call in which agents and detectives give details of alleged hackers being tracked and plans to catch them. The FBI does not know how the call was taken, and they are currently trying to figure out how. This has certainly stumped many people.

 

The group released the audio of the phone call that was taken, the audio can be heard at this site: http://tinyurl.com/6rhz7o9.

Zappos Reports Hackers Gain Customer Information

EARLIER today Zappos reported that there was a breach in their security system. This breach was accessed through servers in Kentucky. The hackers who performed this attack, gained access to lots of customer data. The data that is now vulnerable is: Name, Shipping Address(es), Billing Address(es), Last 4 Digits of credit card, email, phone number, (cryptographically scrambled) password.

Zappos is stressing, that they did not gain access to payment information or full credit card numbers.

Zappos is recommending that you immediately change your password. They are also telling you that your data may be used to get other data.

 

To read Zappos email to employees and the email to  customers click here.

LogMeIn Free iOS Application

THE people over at LogMeIn have recently release a free iOS application. The application was launched Dec. 22. For those of you who don’t know, LogMeIn is a service where you can remote access your computer(s). Personally I use it all the time and it is a lifesaver. You can also learn more by going to their website.

Anyway, for a long time they have not had a free iPhone/iPad application. They finally released one.

So now, from your iPhone or iPad access the computers you have set up on LogMeIn. To view more information about the app, just search for it in the App store or visit the link below.
LogMeIn - LogMeIn, Inc.

Happy Birthday Angry Birds

THE wonderful and addicting game Angry Birds is officially two years old, two years ago Rovio launched Angry Birds. Happy birdday (pun intended)

Fans everywhere can enjoy a new “Happy Birdday” update for Angry Birds, which features 15 delectable new birthday cake levels, spiffy new menus and graphics, and special birthday achievements. As a birthday gift to our fans, all episodes are now unlocked! Also make sure to check out our new Rovio channel, which gives you instant access to your favorite Angry Birds content. You are just one tap away from news, games, videos, Facebook, Angry Birds shop, and much more! The update will be available for iOS on Sunday, with other platforms coming soon.

You can show your Angry Birds support by going to their store and buying some really cool stuff. Or, you can learn more about their birthday celebration by viewing their blog post.

QR Codes Don’t Work

An article from CNN.com

QUICK response (QR) codes, are two-dimensional barcodes that resemble a checkerboard on LSD are appearing more frequently on billboards, magazine ads, business cards, stickers, T-shirts and anything that is used to promote stuff. However, evidence suggests many people don’t understand what QR codes are or what to do with them.

You might think that if anyone would know how to use a QR code, it would be college students — a demographic that is immersed in technology and bombarded by marketing. But a recent study found that nearly eight in 10 college students had no idea what to do with a QR code.

Archrival, a research group that focuses on youth marketing, surveyed 500 students at 24 colleges and universities across the United States. They found that although about 80% of students owned a smartphone and had previously seen a QR code, only about 20% were able to successfully scan the example QR code they were shown. Furthermore, about 75% said they were unlikely to scan a QR code in the future.

The whole point of a QR code is that it’s supposed to make it easier for people to use their phones to connect with information about things that they encounter in their environment. That’s where mobile typing gets in the way.

Most smartphones and even many feature phones have good enough web browsers and data connections to display a simple mobile-friendly web page, but trying to correctly type a URL on even the best smartphone is a pretty tedious and error-prone activity.

QR codes eliminate the need for typing a URL on your phone, but you need to have a barcode scanner app installed. And then you must take a moment to find and launch that app before you point your phone’s camera at a QR code.

 

Your Future Facebook Profile

IT will not be long before Facebook makes a dramatic change to your profile. Your profile will no longer be a “wall”. It is now changing to be an appearance of a “Timeline”.

Facebook’s Timeline is going to have all of your posts, events, etc. in chronological order from the date you created your Facebook account. Whenever someone writes on your wall, or you update your status, add photos it will be put on your timeline on that date.

You can view Facebook’s official trailer at the upcoming change.

Twitter:@GeekyTechGuy

Facebook Creates Password for Your Facebook Apps

An article from Yahoo Newsz

FACEBOOK is ramping up security by giving people the option of setting passwords for games or other third-party applications added to pages at the leading online social network.

Facebook said Thursday that “App Passwords,” along with a forgotten password recovery feature called “Trusted Friends,” will be added in the coming days to safeguards at the service used by about 800 million people worldwide.

“There are tons of applications you can use by logging in with your Facebook credentials,” the California-based firm said in an online post.

“However, in some cases you may want to have a unique password for that application.”

Users will be able to set passwords for applications by going to a security section in account settings.

The Trusted Friends feature will let Facebook members pick three to five people who will serve as touch points if main account passwords are forgotten.

“We’ll send codes to the friends you have selected, then you can log back into your account using these codes after your friends have passed them along to you,” Facebook said.

“It’s sort of similar to giving a house key to your friends when you go on vacation — pick the friends you most trust in case you need their help in the future.”

Steve Jobs Has Died

As of today October 5th 2011. Steve Jobs has been announced dead. Apple has confirmed his death.

Below is the statement from Apple:

“We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today.

Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.

His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene, and his family. Our hearts go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts.”

The Apple Home Page has been set to remember Steve.

Rest In Peace Steve, you will be missed.

Apple Home Page-In Memory of Steve Jobs

 

 

Steve Jobs has been announced dead as of October 5th 2011. The picture below is a screenshot of Apple’s home page.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steve Jobs Rest In Peace, You will be missed.

Apple Releases New Products

TODAY at Apple’s special event Apple released a few new products.

  • iPhone 4S
  • iPod Touch
  • iPod Nano

More articles will becoming later today on each individual product.