Internet

Wed
18
Mar
John Lister's picture

Tech Giants Tackle COVID-19 Fake News

Leading tech companies have agreed a joint program to week out false information about the COVID-19 pandemic. It could have a knock-on effect on the rest of their services. The program is announced in a joint statement from Facebook, Google, ... LinkedIn, Microsoft, Reddit, Twitter and YouTube. It says they will take steps "to make sure everyone has access to accurate information, stop misinformation and harmful content, and support global health experts, local governments, businesses and communities." (Source: fb.com ) It's part of a four part program of measures from Facebook. The ... (view more)

Wed
05
Feb
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Facebook Messenger Kids Beefs Up Parental Controls

Facebook has given parents more ability to monitor their child's use of its messaging tool. The move follows criticism of Facebook producing such a tool in the first place. "Messenger Kids" launched back in 2017 for use by under 13s, who aren't ... allowed to use Facebook itself. The key selling point was that parents had to approve the contacts that the child could then exchange messages with. That hasn't always worked exactly as planned, as a glitch meant children could take part in group chats containing people who weren't approved or even that they'd blocked. Parents will now be ... (view more)

Tue
24
Dec
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Facebook Stops Using Phone Numbers for Advertisements

Facebook is to stop treating user's phone numbers as a way to target advertising and recommend friends. Critics said the practice undermined a key security measure. The company says it wasn't collecting the numbers directly from phones or the ... Facebook app. Instead, users provided the number when taking advantage of two factor authentication. With this set-up, it means that if a user tries to log in to Facebook on a new device or from a new location, Facebook sends a security code by text message to the number on file. The user then has to type the code in to Facebook before they can login ... (view more)

Tue
03
Dec
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Facebook, Google Photos to Allow Data Sharing

Facebook is to let users automatically copy their uploaded photos and videos to Google's photo service. It's part of a "data portability" project between tech giants, but is also a demonstration of how slowly the project itself is moving. The tool ... will mean users can transfer files without needing to download them to their devices, then re-upload them to another service. In particular, Google's Photos service makes it easy to access photos on multiple devices. It also has automatic tagging so that users can quickly find all their photos of a particular location or activity, for example. It's ... (view more)

Thu
28
Nov
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Firefox to Fight 'Fingerprinting' Tracking

Mozilla is to block "fingerprinting" tracking in the Firefox browser. It's an alternative tracking technique to cookies and doesn't require any consent from users. Most people know about cookies, which involves sites putting a small file on a ... computer to either identify a user for future visits or track their online activity. In most cases cookies both legally and practically need consent from the user before they can be issued. Fingerprinting is a more creative technique that doesn't require consent and has proven harder to block. It's all based around the fact that a website is able to ... (view more)

Wed
13
Nov
John Lister's picture

Google to Label Slow Loading Sites

Google is experimenting with ways to inform Chrome users when a web site likely to be slow to load. In doing so, it wants to penalize poorly coded sites - though critics say that's not always the main reason for a delay. The idea is a form of ... "badging" that will appear in the browser. It's a sign of how potentially controversial the subject is that Google is thinking of informing users in this way rather than simply downgrading such sites so they appear lower in search rankings. The initial tests will be based around the general point of whether a site is slow to load. Later on, Google may ... (view more)

Thu
07
Nov
John Lister's picture

Chromium-based Edge Browser to Launch January 2020

Microsoft's revamped version of the Edge browser will launch on January 15, 2020. It's based on the same code as Google's Chrome and will be able to run Chrome extensions. Designed as a replacement for the much maligned Internet Explorer, Edge ... debuted with the release of Windows 10 back in July, 2015. The original version was built from scratch using Microsoft's own browser engine, which is the component that turns a web page's code into what users actually see on the screen. The new edition isn't simply an update but rather a complete rebuild. It will now use code and ... (view more)

Wed
06
Nov
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Firefox to Block Infuriating Notification Requests

Mozilla is reducing the likelihood Firefox users will be bothered by website notification requests. It will make browsing a lot less frustrating, but will upset some website owners. What are Website Notifications? Notifications in web browsers work ... in a similar way to notifications from apps on a mobile phone or tablet. As an example, a user of a streaming video site might agree to accept browser notifications. They could then get notifications whenever the site adds a new episode of a TV series they've previously watched on the site. On Windows 10, this notification might appear in the ... (view more)

Thu
31
Oct
John Lister's picture

Google Stops Indexing Adobe Flash Content

Google has taken yet another step to try to kill off Adobe Flash. The move will dramatically reduce the visibility of Flash content in its search results. Adobe Flash was once innovative and the primary way for delivering animated and interactive ... content online, including online-based browser games and even advertisements. Even so, many web designers seemed more interested in showing off their creativity with Flash rather than making a usable and useful site. Adobe Flash Security Bugs Severe As far back as 2010, Apple made the decision to ditch Flash entirely from its devices - a move that ... (view more)

Wed
16
Oct
John Lister's picture

Chrome to 'Freeze' Unused Tabs, Reduce RAM Usage

Google is introducing more options to deal with the Chrome browser using too much computer memory. It's implementing less severe options for users with multiple tabs open. The way Chrome was originally designed means every open tab uses up computer ... memory (RAM). That can mount up substantially if you are accustomed to having many tabs opened when Chrome is launched, or even with Chrome is idle. In turn this will significantly slow the computer down on older systems that don't have enough RAM to begin with. Since 2015 Chrome has had a feature called "Tab Discarding" that kicks in ... (view more)

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