The Chinese multinational, Huawei at the Eco-connect Europe conference, announced an open platform for On-Device artificial intelligence (AI) development, HiAI 2.0, that will avail developers an open ecosystem to tap into the capabilities of Huawei technologies.

While HiAI 1.0, the inaugural AI computing platform provided developers with operators and APIs, that helped to cut down the time and complexity of app development, HiAI 2.0 will bring even greater computing power, richer APIs and better support across a wider range of devices.

It’ll eliminate the barrier to entry of AI development, thus allowing more developers to join and create new apps for the consumers.

The HiAI 2.0 platform will offer developers greater access to the capabilities of Huawei’s chipsets, devices and cloud, including the HiAI Foundation, HiAI Engine and HiAI Service, which services will serve the myriad needs of developers.

According to the company, there are over 1000 partners and 450000 developers actively working within the Huawei HiAI ecosystem and empowering more than 300 million users with AI capabilities.

And within the HiAI program, Huawei operates 13 R&D centres and 2 Open Labs across the world to collaborate with local developers for app development.

The labs perform the role of a springboard for developers to launch their projects, while Huawei promises to remain committed to working with its partners in building the ecosystem to perfect the AI experience.

Huawei HiAI 2.0: Open platform for the development of On-Device artificial intelligence

Microsoft has made it pretty easy to connect your mobile phone with Windows 10 PC through a nifty app, Windows 10's Your Phone app, which serves to bridge the gap between PC and a smartphone, allowing access right within the PC and the ability to read, send and receive messages.

It is a gateway of some sorts for Microsoft apps to your phone, while the idea is self-explanatory as possible, but the app still present some quirks worth explaining, as you’ll find in the sidebar links to download apps like Microsoft News, and other apps like Microsoft Hyperlapse Mobile and Wordament.

The app connects to your phone as a Windows Continuum, which Microsoft apparently assign the connectivity role via the Your Phone app, as removing your phone from pocket is seen as a rather unnecessary distraction by Microsoft's standard.

Steps to set up Windows 10 Your Phone app

Firstly, you’ll need the Windows 10 October Update, which comes bundled with the Your Phone app, though it is actually two apps: the Your Phone app on Windows, and the Companion app for Android.

Then make sure that your phone and PC are connected via Bluetooth, and on the same Wi-Fi network. Now, the Your Phone app will appear on your PC’s desktop, which should be immediately apparent via a shortcut on your PC.

The Companion app for Android can be downloaded via the Play Store, or you can simply enter your mobile number into the Your Phone app and Microsoft will send the download link to your phone.

Albeit, the Your Phone app offers little as far as the full functionality of the smartphone itself is concerned, but it sure does establish a link between your phone and your PC, with the option of getting additional apps.

It satisfactorily performs two very simple functions: bringing a repository for your messages, as well as photos. And you can write and respond to a given message using your PC’s keyboard.

Also, if you've recently taken a picture, Your Phone app will enable you to access the photo for use or edit right from your PC.

But unfortunately, there isn't a Your Phone Companion app for iOS, and the Your Phone Companion app is quite distinct from the defunct Phone Companion app that originally launched with Windows 10. Though, there is a Companion app for iOS, also authored by Microsoft, that allows you to send photos from iPhone to Windows.

How to link your Smartphone with Windows 10 PC for better experience

The discussions about early stages of 5G seems to hold a whole new level of possibilities for the Internet, and there's poised to be a revolution in areas like Cloud computing, virtualization and the huge impact will leave many businesses in limbo within a few months.

But those are mere predictions, as 5G full deployment is pretty far off, though closer than in the distance future. The 5G technology isn't just about faster data connections and internet services, it portends endless possibilities for digital transformation in the area of Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI), among other technologies.

Albeit, the actual rollout of 5G will be more of a whisper, but certainly some markets will see 5G coverage beginning in 2019, though availability issue and inconsistency in coverage will be the norm.

While the volume of data is expected to increase exponentially as Gartner had predicted that the number of connected devices will grow from 23 billion to 31 billion by 2020. And as IoT devices continue to become more commonplace, data will be processed at much higher speed thanks to the deployment of 5G.

The 5G rollout will take quite longer to upgrade mobile infrastructure because many microcell towers and base stations will be required, as it is not just a matter of updating radio technologies on existing towers.

The first 5G-enabled handsets, however is already hitting the market, and this will greatly improve by the mid 2019. According to reports by CCS Insights, about 60 million 5G connections are expected by 2020. And it will be more about devices that can work with the 5G technology when it becomes more widely available, with the early adopters likely to be seen from the United States, China, Japan and South Korea.

Indeed 5G will be a revolutionary force in transforming the technology landscape; including how we live and play, and how businesses operate in 2019 and beyond.

Predictions for 2019: Will IoT hit the mainstream; What will 5G early stages be like?

Google’s Santa tracker offers a peek on Santa Claus with its own version of an Advent Calendar, which leads up to the official commencement of tracking on Monday, December 24, which is Christmas Eve.

It combines educational stuff with holiday fun, and Google also opened up its online Santa’s Village since December 4, with offerings including an array of games for kids of all ages, plus holiday Gboard stickers.

Starting around 10:00 a.m. UTC on Monday, December 24, which is 5:00 a.m. Eastern time, you can track Santa Claus on Google Maps, where you will find a countdown leading up to it.

The company is also offering its annual Google Santa Tracker Android app, with some Android app-exclusive games that you won’t find on the main website, and you can make fun, Mad Libs-style phone calls from Santa to friends in the U.S. and Canada, which calls are deliberately meant to be ridiculous — and serve as a pleasant surprise to the recipients.

You can also ask Google Assistant “Where’s Santa?” or “Track Santa,” or “tell me a holiday story” - as Google Assistant has got some builtin Santa-flavored jokes. For instance, if you ask the assistant to “Tell me a Santa joke,” the Jolly Old Elf will make a cameo appearance to tell some real groaners.

The Santa tracker can be accessed either by visiting the official Google Santa Tracker website or searching for "Santa Claus" on the Google App.

Google Santa Tracker: How to track Santa Claus on Christmas Eve

The leading social network, Facebook is sure digging into deep waters, as a new report ties it to developing a cryptocurrency to allow users on its messaging service, WhatsApp to transfer money.

According to Bloomberg, Facebook is developing stablecoin - a digital currency that will be pegged to the U.S. dollar - to minimize volatility, but the company is still far from releasing the coin, as the strategy, including a plan for custody assets, or currencies that would be held to protect the value, are still in the works.

The cryptocurrency when launched will let users transfer money on the WhatsApp messaging app, and will be initially targeted at the remittances market in India, according to those familiar with the report.

And the kick off with India, is perhaps because it's messaging service, WhatsApp is hugely popular in India, with over 200 million users, also the country leads in world remittances, with $69 billion sent home to India in 2017, according to the World Bank.

While facebook had earlier chirped at looking into applications for blockchain - the encryption technology behind cryptocurrencies - but didn't offer any specifics about future works in that direction.

The company hopes to leverage on the power of blockchain technology to create a digital coin that would be far more easier to use for daily purchases as it will be stable than other currencies such as Bitcoin.

Facebook developing a Cryptocurrency to allow users on WhatsApp to transfer money

Microsoft has introduced an isolated desktop environment, called Windows Sandbox, whereby you can temporarily run untrusted software without the fear of having impact on your PC, and once done, the software with all its files will be permanently deleted.

The Windows Sandbox builds on the technologies used within Windows Containers, which are designed to run in the cloud, with added Windows 10 integration, and features that make it more suitable to run on devices and laptops without requiring the full power of Windows Server.

It offers a lightweight virtual machine, so if you've ever been in a situation in which you wanted a clean installation of Windows, but didn’t want to set up a virtual machine, this feature is meant for you.

Since Windows Sandbox is basically running the same operating system image as the host, the same physical memory pages are used as the host for operating system binaries via a technology referred to as “direct map”.

And the key enhancements to Windows Sandbox is the ability to use a copy of the Windows 10 installed on your PC, instead of downloading a new VHD image as you would have to do with an ordinary virtual machine.

The same executable pages of ntdll, are mapped into the sandbox as that on the host, to ensure this is done in a secure manner and no secrets are shared.

The Windows Sandbox feature is set to debut in 19H1(1903), the next version of Windows 10 expected in spring of 2019, and will come as part of Windows 10 Pro and Enterprise Editions.

Windows Sandbox: Microsoft's desktop environment for running applications in isolation

Facebook has been grappling with incessant privacy issues, and now, the company has announced working on a feature called "clear history" which would allow users to check apps and websites that they've interacted with and clear all history from their account.

While other previous measures taken by the social network to ensure users privacy include bringing the privacy settings to the top of News Feed with the apps granted permissions to data by the user and an easy way to revoke the permissions.

Facebook has seemingly ran into some challenges with the new privacy tool, as it tries to organize web browsing data by date, which instead the "clear history" tool organizes by user profile, making it a bit difficult to find an individual user's browsing data.

The director of product management and leader of Facebook's privacy and data use team, David Baser, stated that they want to build something that's truly helpful for everyone and they'd rather take the time to get it right than rushing something out.

"To do this instantaneously for people so they can control it, has meant we've needed to build a new way for our systems to process information," said Baser.

The privacy tool will help users have more controls over their data and be able to choose which specific parts of their data they no longer want Facebook to share with advertisers and which specific posts, reactions, comments and profile details to delete.

Facebook hopes to commence the testing of the tool in Spring 2019, while the privacy tool is still very much in the works but isn't expected to launch anytime soon.

Facebook prepping a Privacy tool to allow Clearing of History on the Network

Microsoft has launched an analytics product, Clarity that aims to empower website owners by the visualizing at scale, the user behavior to make data driven decisions on improvements to optimize conversion, engagement and retention.

The Clarity A/B experimentation will allow web developers to see exactly when their key metrics are improving, thus eliminating the possible drawback with other such analytics product, which is the lack of visibility on what caused the metrics to move in any instance.

While Google's A/B testing tool, Optimize 360 which made debut in 2017, includes a free version, Google Optimize; but Optimizely, the other popular web analytics service, had discontinued same on its own offerings earlier in the year.

The Clarity service is perhaps a good alternative to Google Optimize, albeit the pricing is what will eventually determine if it will be worth the trying, but for now, the company has not provided a timeline for when it will be out of beta.

It works with any HTML webpage (desktop or mobile), but you are required to add a small piece of JavaScript to the website, after which you've created a project, you will then be added to the waitlist. Once you are approved, you can then get the JavaScript code to use the Clarity dashboard to replay user sessions.

Clarity is currently compatible with the most common two and three letter top level domains (such as .com, .edu, .au, .uk, etc); but Microsoft is working on adding support for more general top level domains.

The team has also open sourced the JavaScript library, with the instructions to help understand user behavior from websites on GitHub, which makes the project a continuous development.

How Clarity Analytics visualize user behavior to make data driven decisions

Google has pledged to keep its facial recognition products free until there are enough policies to prevent abuse of the technology, which is inline with its commitments to responsible development of AI (artificial intelligence).

The same principles will guide what types of features they build, as the facial recognition technology can be beneficial in areas like helping to find a missing person, for instance it could allow to compare photo of a person to a database for identification, Google is exploring ways to identify even more capabilities around the technology.

But like related technologies, facial recognition offer functions which deserves careful evaluation to ensure its use aligns with these principles and values, to avoid harmful outcomes.

Google's resolve to desist from the commercialization of its facial recognition technology may be as a result of backlash on how other vendors of the technology such as Microsoft is engaging in relationship with government agencies which employees are concerned it could involve the use of the technology.

The company promises to work with other organizations to identify and address these challenges, and unlike Microsoft, Google has chosen not to create facial recognition APIs on its Cloud until it works out some important policy questions.

It also hope to bring leading academics from the Association of Pacific Rim Universities together to research on application of AI for social good, with governance frameworks to guide responsible development of AI, and the network will serve as a forum for researchers to discuss issues with government, and the private sector.

Google pledges to keep its Facial Recognition technology free until policies can prevent abuse

The Raw String literals, new form of literal supposed to ease Java development with multiple lines of source code and doesn't interpret escape sequences, may be axed from the Java Development Kit (JDK) 12.

While the programming capability was to make it pretty easier to express sequences of characters, by supplying strings targeted for grammars that span several lines of code, but the team has expressed doubt that the feature would be fully ready by 19, March 2019, when Java 12 will be released.

Brian Goetz, Java language architect for Oracle, wrote in a email that it preview in its current state would be to the detriment of the language. And they’re of course disappointed that it will take slightly longer for the feature to make it into the language, but that’s the best choice.

Therefore, a proposal has been launched to remove the raw string literals from the planned Java 12 upgrade, with the review period slated for December 18, 2018.

The feedback from the proposal comprise the two-backquote sequence which could be confused for an empty string; with no direct way to start or end a raw string literal with backquote; and unnecessary asymmetry on raw string literals and traditional string literals.

The JDK Enhancement Proposals (JEP) team's decision to drop raw string literals from version 12 of the Java programming language, may perhaps give developers the opportunity to better work out the design and redefine the options.

Java 12 launching without the much anticipated Raw String Literals

Instagram is reportedly working on "creator accounts" which is targeted at connecting brands with high-profile users, often referred to as social influencers as they command a pool of large audience through their great number of followers. While brands would be able to work directly with the influencers to push their social campaigns, including trending tags or ad promotions.

The Creator accounts will afford the influencers daily and weekly data insights on changes in their follower counts, and also make it possible for them to get a recap of their contents to know what may have resulted the increase or decrease in number of followers.

Among the tools that will be available to the creators, are testing and sorting tools to allow them filter read from unread and flagged messages, with ranking requests so as to not to miss any important thing.

While Instagram already offer Businesses special accounts to represent them on the platform, the new feature will fully open them up to collaborate with the influencers whom they often turn to for their marketing campaigns. And just like the business-focused profiles on Instagram, it is meant for the conventionally talented, digital influencers and celebrities with unbeatable reach.

The feature which is currently in testing with a small group of high-profile Instagram users will offer tools tailored to make working with influencers easier for the brands, as the creator-specific accounts will give the social media's high-profile users specialized tools to engage with the various businesses on the platform.

Instagram Creator Accounts to target high-profile Social Influencers on the platform

In today's world, blogging has become an essential part of not only keeping oneself-busy but also a marketing tool and a great strategy to make money online. With fresh new posts on your website like a breath of fresh air for your business and at the same time, a big help to search engines.

Every time a new post is up that covers the popular topics on your website, as people use search engines to find out about nearly everything, your writing not only helps the search engines but also the searchers, thus the search engines send traffic to your website for the related queries.

And people visit your website with hope to get a solution for their queries and hence every time when you post a new entry you strengthen the bond with your followers and visitors.

All businesses want to stand out from the crowd and blogging is one of the best ways to do it. To stand out of the crowd, you need to use some techniques that could help you boost your website search engine optimization (SEO) results.

SEO serves to increase traffic flow to your website, and the optimization gets better through your posts or blogs, so the more you post the better chances you can reach more people.

As websites are updated on a regular basis, they are loved by search engines because nobody likes old and outdated information, and not only would it cause irrelevant answers but also obsolete data thus resulting a drop in the traffic. The websites that are useful are ones that are updated every day or at least on a weekly basis.

There are many points that help to keep your website in the limelight with search engines and to be #1 in the result is the need to keep on improving the quality of your blogs. This can be done by taking care of some little issues and adding some bits and pieces here and there on your page.

It is advised to use professional tools like Google Keyword Planner to find the most searched keywords matching your blogging niche, and incorporate them accordingly (with proper keyword density) to further enhance the searchability and quality of your content.

Now lets us discuss some of the important tips below that could help you make your content perform better:

One is not Enough

Nowadays, we need everything at our fingertips, and we expect not only one-word answer or one-page approach, but a complete encyclopedia to be present in one single click. This need of users is also taken up by search engines especially Google where they prefer sites that give complete in and out details about the related topic all compiled in a single source.

These search engines have made a pattern that only shows those websites in the search result that cover the topic in a holistic manner.

This method not only attracts human reader but also shows the worth of your website to Google that you have a full command on the subject you are writing, and hence the search engine crawlers find it justifying to promote your content.

Creating Sub Topics as Internal Links

While back in school or high school we learned the importance of subtopics or subheadings, they are a great way of making your reader wish to read under it in detail. In blogging world subtopics and subheadings are a way to interconnect different pages of your own website that you think can be interrelated in any way, even in smallest manner. This approach will catch more eyes and will help to stay on the search result.

Keywords and Images with Backlinks

You should know your subject in and out in such a way that no one else knows,and you can describe it in such a manner that reader will be left in a hypnotic state, without they detecting that your article has any such words that can be called as ‘keywords’. Keywords are those simple or popular words that people use when putting up their query on Google. A good blog always has keyword incorporated in its text in such a strategy that it seems like an essential part of it.

Same goes for images, as it’s a very common human psyche that we are attracted to high-quality images with a great background. We can use these images as a mean to redirect our readers to our internal pages as well as external pages. Another very important aspect is providing backlinks to keywords or images. These backlinks help search engines to detect your blog or website as a part of given query.

Inbound Linking

Inbound linking is something that we cannot forcefully apply to our own website,but we can take such steps that encourage other websites to inbound with our website. To ensure this approach we need to make a routine of adding in details to our website topic and consistently produce fresh elements and posts.

So, the conclusion is that these best practices, as outlined by the Dissertation team, can be taken on a faster pace if we concentrate on social media marketing with such dynamic and encouraging contexts that leave our target audience and competitors in a state of awe.

What are the Importance of Blogging in SEO?

The Java standard for developing component-based web interfaces, JavaServer Faces (JSF) presents formal components in a logical tree using XML document, and especially suitable for large-scale, Java enterprise development.

Just like JavaServer Pages (JSP), it allows access to server-side data and logic, while the former is essentially an HTML imbued with server-side capabilities.

JSF is independent of the HTML, as the components are backed by Java objects, and coupled with the full range of Java abilities, including remote APIs and database accessibility, allowing to build web interfaces without much interaction with the base technologies.

Its approach to component-based UI development for web applications involves the MVC architecture, event model, and component library, which include the new features available in JSF 2.3 and PrimeFaces for component library.

Though, the JSF standard has faced stiff competition from the Java-compatible web frameworks, and client-side JavaScript frameworks, but it remains the preferred Java standard for large-scale enterprise development.

The specification spawns a wealth of frameworks and libraries, which has kept pace with the most recent client-side improvements, for instance the PrimeFaces.

While JSF pages can be used within JavaServer Pages, it's perhaps more common for Facelets used to build standalone JSF pages, and the Facelets are XHTML pages designed for JSF interfaces; using XML tags you can create a component tree as the scaffold for a JSF user interface.

The standards are governed by the open source community, with the Java Community Process (JCP) having overseen the development of Java technology; and Servlets, JSP, and JSF were all developed using JCP's open source specification process.

A look at the Java Standard for developing Component-based UIs, JavaServer Faces

Google's open-source browser technology, Chromium is hugely popular nowadays, that even the supposed staunch competitor, Microsoft is now looking to rely on Chromium instead of its EdgeHTML browser engine.

Microsoft has confirmed the overhauling of its browser, Edge to run on Chromium, same engine that powers Google Chrome, and doing so simply means that Google will have more control to decide the capabilities available to the web.

The switch will make it pretty hard for other competitors to forge ahead, because it makes Google even more powerful on many fronts.

That's exactly the situation when Microsoft had a monopoly on browsers with Internet Explorer (IE) in the early 2000s before Firefox was released and eventually, Google Chrome.

The competition help to balance the internet and online life, which depends on choice, and it allow the consumers to be able to decide whether something is better and to take action.

Google as a fierce competitor, has highly talented staffers and a monopolistic hold on the web assets will inevitable lead to dominance across other aspects like: advertising, search and would create a vast imbalance in the playing field.

Even Opera has joined Chromium, also following in its footsteps is the relatively new comer, Brave browser.

It leaves Gecko Quantum from Mozilla as the only alternative browser engine, and Firefox once again holds its own, and has assured on speed and performance with Quantum Firefox, bringing smarter memory management and providing some nifty new capabilities.

What's the significance of Microsoft’s switch to Chromium for the web?

Unfortunately, due to the bad reputation of torrenting, most ISPs (Internet service providers) and probably the government may not support it, even while it's totally legal.

While many people have talked about torrenting in a negative light as a way to illegally share files, but that's not all there is to torrenting. Actually, torrenting can be pretty useful for sharing large files, and of course legally, such as presentations in the form of videos and photos, or for downloading out-of-print titles or non-copyrighted files.

But, if you're downloading illegal files and the government caught up with you, you may face legal actions and possibly, serve some jail time.

Steps to Safely Download Torrents

Firstly, make sure you are torrenting from legitimate sites. And most importantly, make sure the download link has been accessed and upvoted recently in popular forums like Reddit. As there are lots of torrent sites, the most popular sites like Kickass Torrents (KAT) and the Pirate Bay remains the safest.

Though there are several Torrents proxy and mirror sites, but most of them don’t tend to work and those that do are riddled with malware. But the best work list of proxy and mirror sites for Kickass Torrents (KAT) are available on this site -, that are perfectly effective for unblocking the site, however, you’ll most probably need a VPN.

You can also check out the following Proxy list for KickAss:


Why use a VPN service to Access Torrents

As most of torrents sites are infamous for distributing the largest collection of pirated contents in the industry, they are restricted and inaccessible due to regional laws. So, if your country has a strict copyright regulation, there are chances you will not be able to access Torrents without the help of a proxy or VPN service.

With the help of proxy, VPNs or even mirror sites you can easily get unblocked and enjoy your torrenting.

Instead of just guessing which links are safe, you should make use of a VPN to torrent safely and securely. It stands between you and the site that you're accessing, allowing you to surf with a safer connection that won't leak your personal information and will give you a head-up if downloading anything unsafe.

Although, torrent files may not always be the safest, but there are plenty of legal reasons why you are doing what you're doing, so the fact that you're torrenting doesn't necessarily raise any red flag.

How to Download Torrents Safely and Anonymously without revealing your identity

Microsoft has demonstrated the total embracing of open source, as it open-sources the three Windows UX frameworks, namely: Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF), the Windows Forms and Windows UI XAML library (WinUI).

While the open source frameworks will avail developers the ability to contribute to the source code creations, with third-parties input in the debugging of the frameworks to provide timely fixes.

Albeit, the WPF isn't completely open at the moment, only the smaller components are available on GitHub; but Windows Forms and WinUI are completely open and available.

The frameworks will serve as followup to the open source .Net Core 3 framework, which also works with the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) XAML, and existing and new applications can run on .Net Core.

Also, developers can launch and debug projects on WPF and Windows Forms right within Visual Studio 2019 Preview 1, and open .NET Core 3.0 projects in Visual Studio 2017 15.9, although you'll need to enable the previews.

The WPF will serve as a rendering engine to take advantage of the modern graphics hardware, and the UI framework for building desktop client applications, including model, graphics, controls, layout, data binding and security.

Microsoft hopes to scale the growth of .NET by leveraging the open source community, while the developers can help in the debugging and fixing of issues, as well as building private copies of the UI stack.

Why the Open Sourcing of Windows UX Frameworks matters to developers

Microsoft Edge is the default web browser for Windows 10 device classes, including Windows 10 Mobile, and Xbox One consoles, replacing Internet Explorer 11 and Internet Explorer Mobile. But the browser adoption has steadily gone down, and Microsoft is perhaps looking to rely instead on Google's browser engine.

While the Blink rendering engine is forked from WebKit and currently used by Google Chrome, and also Opera, now Microsoft is reportedly revising its browser with codename, Anaheim using same engine.

According to reports, the supposed new browser will be replacing Edge browser, which the Windows Central blog claimed as Microsoft's throwing in of the towel with Edge and is building a new web browser for Windows 10, powered by Chromium.

Though, the company has not confirmed the report, an insider scoop admits that Microsoft indeed plans to repackage its browser software around Chromium.

Microsoft had originally built its browser with a rendering engine called EdgeHTML, designed to be lightweight, fast and secure, but since launch the browser has be plagued with a plethora of issues resulting low adoption from Windows users.

Albeit, it remains unclear if the new browser will eventually launch using the Edge name or as a complete new brand, but the sure thing is that Blink is the new Windows 10's browser core technology.

Microsoft looks to Blink Engine for the core Edge browser technology

The popular question-and-answer portal, Quora was hit by a security breach resulting unauthorized access to nearly 100 million users accounts, which compromise was as a result of entry by a malicious third party.

According to the company, the breach has resulted compromise in the following users data: personal account information (such as name, email address, password, imported data from linked accounts), as well as public contents (like questions, answers, comments, upvotes) and non-public actions (such as answer requests, direct messages, etc).

All users affected in the breach will be notified by Quora in an email, but while you await them to provide relevant updates to their system, below steps can help you to remain in control of your account and ensure other accounts sharing same password are safe.

What are the risks to Users Accounts?

While it is pretty unlikely that the breach will result in identity theft, as the site does not store sensitive personal information like credit card or social security numbers, it is recommended that all affected users should update their passwords, including on Facebook and Google accounts, if connected to the account.

How to reset your password on Quora?

Normally, the company should invalidate all affected passwords, and you will be prompted to reset your password the next time you try to log into Quora. However, if you are not prompted on signing in to change your password, you can change it by visiting your account settings and clicking on "Change Password" to enter your new password.

It is generally a best practice to desist from reusing the same password across multiple accounts, and it is recommended that users should change their passwords if they are also using same in other accounts.

Steps to take in the wake of Quora's security breach to ensure accounts safety

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is huge in the cloud computing vertical. In fact, huge doesn’t even describe it. Just consider that AWS is 10 times the size of its closest competitor. And most probably, you have visited a website hosted on AWS servers without even realizing it; as Amazon’s servers are home to internet giants like Netflix, Reddit, and Pinterest.

Now, AWS might not be suitable for hosting a WordPress blog. However, if your company is looking to move its business online, or to transfer its server to the cloud, AWS is for you.

What makes AWS so popular?

Well, it offers all the benefits of scalable computing. This includes flexibility of server resources — you don’t have to worry about getting too little storage space or bandwidth. And, as Amazon owns dozens of massive data centers, they can accommodate virtually any company. To top it off, it’s usually more affordable than investing in your own servers.

If you’re interested in knowing more about AWS, the infographic by the Hosting Tribunal is for you. It covers the most important facts and statistics about AWS.

Starting with some general info about AWS’s coverage and the number of users. It also mentions AWS’s revenue. Warning: their profits might make your jaw to drop to the floor.

It covers the most important milestones in AWS’s history. Here you can find everything from AWS’s launch to it spreading to new regions and introducing new services. You can also read about the largest companies associated with AWS.

You must know the negatives too. AWS suffered several major outages. Still, none of them were severe enough to hurt its reputation. Many companies still consider it the most secure hosting option.

Finally, you can find out the benefits of AWS and read a brief guide to picking the best AWS solution for your needs. You can also read about some success stories, which will give you a perspective on how AWS can benefit your business. So, if you think AWS can be of help to you, check out the infographic below.

AWS Web Hosting Facts & Stats

AWS Web Hosting Facts You Should Know (Infographic)

Microsoft's browsers, Internet Explorer (IE) and Edge are holding on to same share of the browser market from last month for the first time since June, even as Mozilla Firefox suffers a percentage point decline.

While Microsoft has resorted to frantic last-minute efforts to get Windows 10 users to use its browser, including attempts to frighten people into using Edge, with a dialog box warning that pops up on installation of other web browsers, which reads: "You already have Edge - the safer, faster browser for Windows 10" - though only restricted to the Windows 10 developer version.

The Net Applications stats for November puts Internet Explorer and Edge at 13.9% market share, which is one-tenth of a percentage point increase. Albeit, the boost to Microsoft's browser came surprisingly from the rather obsolete IE, rallying up to 9.6% share.

It is rather surprising as Microsoft had already demoted IE browser, as suitable only for the retired Windows 7, as a mere legacy version. The company halted improvements or enhancements coming to the browser since 2016, restricting only security updates.

Microsoft Edge, the default browser for Windows 10 remains at flat rate of 4.2%, the same position it was placed for October.

The Net Applications stats are calculated from user share by detecting the agent strings of the people using the websites of its clients, which it tallies with the visitor sessions rather than users count.

And perhaps, with the most positive of a 12-month stretch since 2013 that IE recorded some increase in shares, the aged Microsoft's browser isn't disappearing anytime soon.

Microsoft's browser, Internet Explorer still holding onto the browser market

YouTube Stories, first announced in November 2017, aims to bring more engagement to the community and for creators to show behind-the-scenes activities, or tease upcoming productions to their fans.

The Stories feature is available to creators with 10,000 or more subscribers, and restricted to the mobile app, while both subscribers and non-subscribers will be able to follow the Stories which lasts for only seven days from the YouTube’s “Up Next” sidebar.

It can also include filters, stickers, music and text, much like what is obtainable with Instagram's Stories and other such related service formats.

YouTube Stories will allow fans to comment, as well as to react to the comments with emojis: thumbs up, thumbs down or a heart and it will feature the same moderation tools as video uploads on the platform.

YouTube extended the rollout to more creators as requested on feedback from the community, and as the product is built specifically for the creators, it behoves them to make it as popular as Instagram’s own feature in the next couple of years.

Up Next: YouTube Stories for Creators with 10,000 or more subscribers

Amazon Corretto is a production-ready distribution of OpenJDK, while the preview release version, Corretto 8 corresponds to Java 8, which installation binaries are currently available for Linux, macOS, and Windows.

Corretto is designed as a drop-in replacement for all Java SE distributions, except in cases where a user is using features not included in OpenJDK, (for instance, Java Flight Recorder) or workloads running on non-HotSpot JVMs.

The open source Corretto distribution of OpenJDK is currently in beta, and preview builds can be downloaded from, with long-term support promise by Amazon, and quarterly updates including bug fixes and security patches.

Amazon will provide security updates at no cost until 2023, and up to Corretto 11. It will include targeted backports from newer releases, as well as newly-developed enhancements from the OpenJDK community.

And the process will involve testing on thousands of Amazon Web services, which will ensure that fixes are released within days of solving the issues.

While Oracle's changes in Java support, the removal of the free long term support (LTS) for Java, have got Amazon customers worried as they'd have to pay for LTS version in order to run workloads.

Amazon has re-affirmed long term support for Java in Amazon Linux, and perhaps this will be followed up with the beta release of Amazon Corretto.

Amazon Corretto, the production-ready distribution of OpenJDK now in open beta

Google has been battling with what it calls the most complex and sophisticated ad fraud operations for years, now the company claims to have obtained a legal backing for takedown of the click-fraud operators.

Working in conjunction with the cyber security firm, White Ops, Google have identified one of the most complex ad fraud operations seen to date, 3ve: A creative and sophisticated threat; haven published a white paper about the ad fraud operation, and steps it took to protect its clients.

3ve (pronounced “Eve”), is an ad fraud operation which evolved in 2017 from a modest, low-level botnet into a sophisticated larger operation that employed a broad set of tactics to run ad fraud. It operated at a significant scale, which at its peak, controls over 1 million IPs from residential malware infections and corporate IP spaces primarily in North America and Europe.

Google discovered that 3ve comprised of three unique sub-operations that have evolved rapidly, with sophisticated tactics to exploit data centers, computers infected with malware, spoofed fraudulent domains, and fake websites.

Through a working group, comprising of about 20 partners, Google seeks to broaden the investigation, and to engage directly with stakeholders to work towards a mutually beneficial outcome.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York has announced charges against this fraud operation, which takedown marks a major milestone in the industry’s fight against ad fraud.

Google records a huge win in fight against global Ad fraud operations

Facebook's experiment with breaking news services, like the "Trending Topics" had raised controversy in reactions to the removal of human moderators, leaving it solely to AI algorithm, which opened door for misinformation and fake news campaigns.

Now, the social media giant is making another bet with local news, as it launches Today In, a feature that breaks local news and information to users based on their geographic location.

It offers a dedicated section which curates and aggregates relevant stories for local sources in a concise form in the News Feed, allowing users to catch up with the news, events, and discussions happening in the community.

While the company’s interest in promoting local news, was as a result of users consistency in demanding to see more local happenings on Facebook, which will help it understand the issues that matter in communities and how they affect users lives.

Albeit, the great bane remains the concerns about misinformation, privacy, and the meddling of government-backed agencies with “fake news” campaigns.

Facebook has also launched its first international test in Australia, with more testing in communities located in places that have low supply of local news and information, by supplementing with relevant content from surrounding areas.

The local news service has been in testing since last January in some U.S. cities, and is now rolling out to more than 400 cities in the United States.

Facebook's local news service, Today In rolling out to over 400 U.S. cities

Before now, the predominant recommendation has been to watch out for a green padlock when transacting with any website, as the presence of HTTPS lends to the credibility of the site, but not anymore.

While the Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is a combination of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol with the SSL/TLS Protocol to enable data encryption and secure identification of a given server, but now even the bad actors adhere to it, which means you'll need to check for more than one sign to know if a website is legit.

As the number of websites supporting HTTPS over encrypted SSL/TLS connections have skyrocketed over the past year, with over 70 percent of web traffic now encrypted, both on computers and mobile devices, even Google has gone ahead to remove the green padlock on its browser, Chrome, citing that HTTPS is now so normal that you don't need to see it anymore.

The proliferation of HTTPS means there's no one rule to protect you from the bad actors on the internet today, so you have to be savvier than ever before to avoid the scams.

It is advisable to check for more than one sign to be sure that a website is legitimate, including making sure the site's URL is actually correct, and as a rule of thumb, type out the URL into the browser instead of following a link from a mail. Also, when using password managers and security software, ensure they are up to date.

The green lock is supposed to show that information sent from your browser is encrypted, and that is all, but doesn't say anything about the legitimacy of the site, as scammers can trick you into entering your sensitive information with a green padlock on their sites too.

That's not to say that HTTPS isn't useful, because transmitting valuable information that anyone could intercept and read is also a bad idea, but a lot of people just don't know the lock means another specific thing, they've been sold over the years that it means a 'safe' website.

Why just HTTPS green padlock isn't enough and neither makes a Safe Website

The countdown to the end of the password has begun, as Google toes the line of security key mechanisms; while this is not actual killing of the password, as it's still tied to pretty strict requirements.

Titan Security Key is a phishing-resistant two-factor authentication (2FA) devices developed by Google that help protect high-value enterprise users from the most sophisticated attacks. It works with most popular browsers, with support from growing ecosystem of services on the FIDO standards, and only available via the Google Store or through a Google Cloud representative.

While Microsoft had also introduced same security mechanism, with its Account holders requiring to signing in with their face or a security key instead of the regular password, which feature makes use of the Windows Hello biometric security or a physical security key.

Google's new Titan Security Key costs only $50 and brings extra security to your Google accounts, including services like Facebook, Dropbox and others, with each key firmware stored in a secure element, preventing anyone to modify or extract the private data in the key which is authenticated with the Google service.

The downside to a physical key, however is that it is liable to get lost, which situation may mean been locked out from your online activities, though Google has assured that there are backups with an extra key that can help you gain access to your account, as the recovery process take days.

But still, the inconvenience remains the bane, just like any kind of two-factor authentication is complicated; that’s the price to pay for keeping your account safe.

Although Google wants the security keys to be available for all, they can only be worth the trouble for administrators and highly placed individuals that are susceptible to targeted attacks, as the many requirements will be tiresome for the average user with little to nothing to spare.

Titan Security Key: Google looks to alternative Mechanisms to the regular Password

The embattled smartphone pioneer, BlackBerry is looking to refocus its strategy on providing core security solutions by the acquisition of Cylance, with the highly rated anti-malware service giving it an edge to cover more verticals.

While BlackBerry offered $1.4 billion dollars for the outright purchase of Cylance, the machine-learning based anti-malware company will be pivotal in the company's drive to provide security for endpoint infrastructures, including automobiles, medical facilities, and critical IoT devices.

Albeit, the company's reputation suffered a huge setback as a result of its early availing of the global decryption key for its consumer devices to the Canadian federal police, and making it possible for them to decrypt text messages sent between BlackBerry handsets.

BlackBerry, however has assured that none of the current enterprise software products will have a global decryption key.

The acquisition of Cylance's anti-malware service is potentially a big win for the company, as the proprietary machine learning technology developed by Cylance is very different from the encryption backdoor it had deployed on its consumer handsets.

But skeptics are concerned about the possibility of another compromise on the part of BlackBerry, as the saying goes that a track record of cooperation by anyone points to possible future cooperation and deliberately created vulnerability will inevitably result to a compromise.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has been notorious for demanding such backdoor access from tech companies, with the widely circulated case of the FBI seeking to break into the iPhone of Syed Farook.

Apple CEO, Tim Cook refuted the demand stating that granting a backdoor access to the iPhone for the federal government to access encrypted data would create "chilling" implications that could undermine the privacy of all users.

BlackBerry will have an uphill task in proving to the consumers that it has their security and privacy at heart, and more than just a prove, they'll have to assure them of total safety from the government.

BlackBerry refocus on core security solutions with Cylance and Spark platform

Are you trying to figure out which video format is ‘best’ suitable for encoding your video? Whether you’re unfamiliar with video formats in general, which may seem like a very difficult decision – but it actually isn’t that complicated a task.

Here are Factors to Consider When Deciding on a Video Format

When deciding on a format, you should first consider the impact it will have on your videos overall output, and particularly, these three factors should be weighed in with the final decisions:

  • Compatibility

It goes without saying that you need to choose a format that will be compatible with the device or platform you want to use in watching the video. Ideally the device will have hardware support (i.e. hardware acceleration) for the format, as software decoding is processor-intensive and require a lot of power.

  • Compression

The format will affect the file size, because the video codec (which is part of the format) determines the compression that is used. Newer codecs typically have better compression rates, and can compress videos to smaller file sizes while maintaining their quality.

  • Features

Some videos may have other features included in the video, and the container (which is also part of the format) needs to support them. Among the more popular features in videos are menus, captions, chapters, and streaming support.

How Will the Video Be Used?

  • Uploading to online video platforms

The format should generally follow the recommended settings of the platform (e.g. YouTube’s recommended settings). That will ensure that it isn’t transcoded internally by the platform – which could affect its quality.

  • Distributing to multiple users

If you’re sharing the video file among many people, compatibility is the main factor to consider. As such a format such as MP4 with H.264 which has near-universal compatibility is normally best.

  • Burning on a video DVD

Video DVDs use the MPEG-2 format to encode videos, making your decision easy. While there are some newer DVD players that support other formats, MPEG-2 is the reliable choice.

  • Storing in a limited amount of space

If storage space is at a premium, you should try to encode it in a format that offers good compression. Nowadays MP4 or MKV with HEVC (H.265) is the common option, but you should check that it is compatible with your device.

Keep in mind that after you encode your video you can convert it using tools such as Movavi Video Converter to convert WebM to MP4 or to and from any other formats. Try to store the original version of the video however, especially if you feel you may need to convert it to a different format later.

Generally speaking in most cases nowadays MP4 with H.264 is a ‘safe’ format, though if H.265 is compatible – it is a better option. That may not always be the case however, and new formats may be introduced that supplant one or the other, or both.

How to Decide the Best Video Format for Encoding your Videos

Microsoft is certainly at a crossroad with its digital assistant, Cortana with the likes of Amazon's Alexa already making huge strides into the booming market for smart speakers, as have also Apple's Siri and Google Home.

While the company has been courting Amazon's Alexa, with the purported integration of the respective digital assistants, Alexa and Cortana, and haven announced the milestone of the two assistants serving as skills in their respective platforms.

But recent occurrence within Microsoft shows that things aren't quite working as anticipated, as the company has gone ahead to downgrade Cortana’s importance by moving it from the AI and Research Division to the Experiences segment.

And Javier Soltero, who has been saddled with Cortana development at Microsoft, announcing earlier in the month about leaving the company; also, another big wig in the Cortana team also left few weeks before Soltero’s announcement, the over a decade veteran Samuel Moreau, design director of Cortana and its AI technology, left to the Expedia Group.

The signals may not actually portend the end of Cortana as a standalone digital assistant, rather it will most likely become less important to Microsoft, just like other similar products that's relegated behind the scenes.

Meanwhile, Google’s smart speaker have been surging in sales, even as analysts predicted that it will outsell Amazon’s Echo for the first quarter of 2018, with about 3.2 million units to Amazon’s 2.5 million sales.

Microsoft's Cortana smart speaker, the Harman Kardon Invoke recorded rather too low a margin sales to be measured; and though Apple isn't a player in the smart speaker market, Siri is visibly domineering on the mobile front as it’s essentially a cult following with iPhone.

Why Microsoft's digital assistant, Cortana appears to be losing its luster

LinkedIn is prepping a feature called Student Voices, which aims at attracting younger audience to the platform, while students will be able to post short-form videos to their Campus Playlist.

The new feature will mimic Snapchat Stories, with slideshows which appears atop the LinkedIn home screen, though no photos is currently allowed, and it will be available only for university students in the United States at launch.

The feature is currently in testing and will be rolling out to college students in the US, and as youngsters love to use short videos to capture moments, LinkedIn is hoping to recapture this very active demographics with the shared experiences to help create a community.

LinkedIn's main aim is to get students to share their academic experiences like internships, career talks and projects to show off to recruiters as part of their personal brand.

Also, LinkedIn will create a set of hashtags like #OnCampus, based on the student’s activities so that other students can follow them on the network, and having these videos on their profile can help the students prepare for life after graduation, and help potential employers learn more about them.

LinkedIn is pushing hard at attracting more young people to the network with its Learning service, with such offerings like video tutorials and courses, and recently including contents from third-party providers, like: Treehouse and the Harvard Business School.

And the network is gradually shifting from the static web tool for professionals seeking jobs, which was its primary function at launch, to a more dynamic and interactive platform for learning; an innovation hub where skills can be harnessed and redeployed for growth and entrepreneurship.

LinkedIn aims to attract younger audience to the platform with Student Voices

Microsoft has introduced new security measures for its Account holders requiring signing in with face or a security key instead of the regular password, which feature makes use of the Windows Hello biometric security or a physical security key.

The move is Microsoft’s attempt to make it pretty easy for users with poor password management and to reduce the incidence of account hacking due to weak passwords, by allowing users to sign into its services without requiring a username or password.

For the feature to work, you must be running the Windows 10 October 2018 Update and using Microsoft’s Edge browser, with your security key compatible with the FIDO2 CTAP specification which technology powers the new security measures.

Albeit, this is not actual killing of the password, as it comes with some pretty strict requirements, though lots of individual still don’t bother using a password manager, and most passwords are terribly poor.

The process isn't quite a take-on the common two-factor authentication, whereby a user has to first enter a username and password, before a message is sent to phone for completion of log-in, as it works minus the initial factors.

This new capability is implemented using Windows Hello and FIDO2 specifications, and based on Windows 10 built-in secure enclave, known as hardware trusted platform module (TPM) or a software TPM.

Unlike the password, FIDO2 protects user credentials using public/private key encryption, while the private key is stored securely on the device and can only be used after it has been unlocked using a local gesture like biometric or PIN.

And with more browsers and platforms supporting the WebAuthn and FIDO2 standards, the password-less experience — which is now only available on Microsoft Edge and Windows 10 — will be a possible experience everywhere!

Microsoft introduces Account sign in using face or security key without password

As in various fields, the area of scriptwriting has its share of myths. Many times they act to dissuade, would be expert scriptwriters from demonstrating their capabilities to the world.

While you may have a great story to tell that could lead to an epic movie; you need to turn it into a fascinating material. Screenplay writing calls for collaboration with others. Be willing to make changes, if and when required.

In that, you don’t need to have total creative control over it. Even when you sign a release, it doesn’t translate into signing your rights away.

Though it is ideal to produce material that appeals to all demographics; it’s okay to narrow down your target audience. With the audience in mind, you can shape the development of the script. If you don’t have an idea of who the audience is; then, you have no business writing the script.

As long as you produce a film worthy material, you don’t need to have connections in the film industry to get it accepted. Though, sometimes painful, don’t bank on second reading if your script gets rejected, especially in the same company. You can still revise it, however.

Always remember to stick to the rules of writing and also formatting guidelines that apply in writing a script. The infographic below outlines the treasure map with unique secrets and detailed instructions for film script writing.

Treasure Map for Your Winning Movie Script Writing

The Treasure Map for Your Winning Movie Script Writing (Infographic)

The new Git-based code hosting project, (pronounced “sir hat”) is a software service for hosting and managing open source projects, which aims to serve the free & open source software community. offers 100% free and open source software forge, with a hosted version of the service running at, but unlike GitHub, which is entirely closed source, and Gitlab, which is mostly open source, is completely open source, with a copyleft license.

The Project was created by Drew DeVault in a mixture of Python and Go, while the service is now available for public alpha testing and developers can create account with the hosted version, or set up the exact same code on cloud or on-prem hardware.

It's novelty include been extremely modular and flexible, and interoperable with the rest of the ecosystem; also boasting of extreme lightweight pages, with the average page weighing less than 10 KiB, without tracking codes and JavaScript.

The component - git hosting, continuous integration, etc - comes as a standalone piece of software that integrates deeply with the rest of and the rest of the ecosystem outside of

For instance, using you can compile your GitHub pull requests, or you can keep your repos on and host everything in same place.

Albeit, the biggest setback with is perhaps the lack of on-boarding for already running code hosting service, and there is currently no automated migration for projects hosted elsewhere. Though, offers continuous integration service which is similar to Jenkins, but it isn’t quite a drop-in replacement.

The project, however will be getting some sort of automated migration functionality before the beta release, and a walk-through tutorials for common workflows.

The Git-based Project, blends the best of GitLab and GitHub functionality

Google has been aggressively pushing its Maps service to businesses, with increasing new features to make it a more valuable tool for marketing.

While Google Maps offers a way for businesses to establish their local presence on the web, including: satellite imagery, 360° panoramic views of streets (Street View); with real-time traffic and route planning.

The company announced a new feature last week that will enable the public to directly message businesses via the Maps app, with the messaging feature now rolling out to iOS and Android users of the Maps service.

And just as businesses use social networks to bolster their branding, share information, interact with their customers, the Google Maps will also afford them the ability to exchange relevant conversations with the customers at large.

As most consumers use Google Maps to find businesses, with Maps contents prominently featured in search results, it is a no-brainer for businesses to effectively optimize their local listings to reach more consumers.

Google will also be bringing a social feature to Google Maps: enabling people to “follow” businesses, while the companies will be able to update prospective customers and customers alike, with offers and other information.

Albeit, Facebook delivers updates from business pages to their followers, but only a tiny fraction of these followers get to see the updates — which they've deliberately altered algorithmically to favor their paid customers.

With Google Maps, the updates will deliver to all followers irrespective of timing and availability, as it will stick to their the “For You” tab on Google Maps until haven acknowledged the information.

Additionally, businesses can have the interior of their offices featured via the StreetView “Indoor Maps” program. Now, just imagine having all these “social network” capabilities that deliver all your contents to the customers at no extra costs!

Google's recent changes to make Maps a more valuable Tool for Marketing

While the Blockchain technology has already caught the attention of most of the Internet's biggest players like IBM, Oracle, Amazon and now, Microsoft has also launched its own cloud-based Blockchain Development Kit powered by Azure.

The Azure Blockchain Development Kit will serve as compliment to Microsoft’s Blockchain Workbench, with features such as off-chain identity, monitoring and application programming interfaces (API) that can be used to develop apps based on blockchain technology.

According to Microsoft, this initial release will focus on these core objectives: Connecting interfaces, integrating data and systems, and deploying Smart Blockchain networks.

The new Azure Kit will enable businesses to integrate workflows with existing systems and applications leveraging Microsoft Flow and Logic Apps, and to extend the blochchain capabilities with REST-based API and message-based API for system-to-system integration.

And it will help businesses to also create distributed ledgers and build applications faster, probably within days instead of having to wait for months as is currently the case.

Additionally, the kit will avail them SMS and voice interfaces for tracking and supply chain solutions, with integration to Internet of Things (IoT) devices and support for Android and iOS mobile clients.

The next step, however will be to make developing end-to-end blockchain applications accessible, fast and affordable to anyone, which will result applications that will run on higher rated cloud performance networks than the present large-scale providers, and enable confederating identities between participants on the Azure Active Directory.

How Microsoft plans to woo enterprises with the Azure Blockchain Development Kit