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Technology and Gadgets

My biggest passion - anything relating to general technology and gadgets... This is a blog of my tech news articles that I find interesting and I curate them to stay on topic with about 2 to 3 posts per day. It is being run as a Collection which means only I am posting but anyone is free to comment and discuss the posts as long as it stays on the topic of the post.
 
Out of long experience this has shown me to be the most focussed way of obtaining relevant interesting news without lots of spam and off topic chatter. I have no intention of spending time moderating a social Community. I've previously had over 500,000 followers on G+ and they followed because posts stayed strictly on topic. I hope people will appreciate that here and if you'd rather do social chat there will be other Groups for that. I honestly can't find time to do news as well as moderate lots of other posts that I have not researched myself.

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  • Danie van der Merwe
  • Danie van der Merwe
    FaceApp vs Facebook - which do you trust more with your personal data?

    Actually, its a bit of a rhetorical question as we don't know much about FaceApp's owners except that their all protecting disclaimer is much like Facebook itself has attempted to have, and of course Facebook has now been caught out countless times in the last few years abusing data privacy.

    Yes, photos are uploaded to FaceApp's cloud (mainly because that type of processing does not happen on an end-user device) but we also...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    WhatsApp has arrived on KaiOS, the OS used by the Nokia 8110

    KaiOS, the phone operating system used on feature phones like last year’s Nokia 8110 remake, finally has an official version of WhatsApp. The app can be downloaded from the KaiStore for KaiOS devices with 256MB or 512MB of RAM, and it will come preinstalled on select phones starting in the third quarter of this year. The KaiOS version of the app supports both calling and messaging, and it includes end-to-end encryption just like it do...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Samsung’s new Galaxy Watch Active will have ECG heart rate tracking (from H1 2020), report claims

    This won’t be the first time a Samsung smartwatch will include heart rate tracking, but previous watches like the Galaxy Watch Active and Galaxy Watch have only included less accurate light-based optical trackers. In contrast, electrocardiogram (ECG) trackers measure electrical signals, which are more accurate and also open up the possibility for them to detect health conditions. However, ECG requi...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    See-Through Solar Panel Breakthrough Could Lead to Self-Powered Smartphones - Researchers in South Africa and Belgium want solar panels everywhere

    An innovative method of collecting solar power could enable smartphone users to boost their batteries by leaving their device in the sun. Researchers at South Africa’s University of the Free State and Belgium’s Ghent University have developed a working model for glass that shifts non-visible light to a solar panel. Using certain phosphor materials in...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    WeNote is an Android Google Keep alternative with a built-in calendar and Google Drive sync or offline storage for privacy

    There are a bunch of different note-taking apps on the Google Play Store, but most people probably gravitate towards the big names like Google Keep, Evernote, or Microsoft OneNote. If you’re looking to try something new, check out WeNote by XDA Member yccheok. It’s an app for all your notes, to-do lists, reminders, etc. just like all the rest, but it’s full of features like...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Mozilla Firefox Tor Mode Likely to Start as a Browser Addon

    Mozilla and the Tor Project are in the early stages of exploring the inclusion of Tor's private browsing features within the Firefox web browser in the form of a privileged extension. This comes on the heels of a previously expressed intention of including some Tor capabilities within Firefox in the form of a Super Private Browsing mode according to Mozilla's public Research Grants 2019H1 report from May.

    Mozilla is not the first to c...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Control your Android Smartphone from your PC for free with scrcpy

    Works for Windows, MacOS and Linux and is quite fast without much lag. Nice thing is no app to install on Android (nor root required) but you need a USB cable and ADB enabled on your computer, with USB debugging enabled on the Android device. I noted the screen must be on otherwise you'll just see a black screen from the computer. Mouse and keyboard work intuitively from the computer.

    It is fully free to use, unlike some other ...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Kazakhstan government is now intercepting all HTTPS traffic - which is why a trusted root certificate is important

    Starting Wednesday, July 17, 2019, the Kazakhstan government has started intercepting all HTTPS internet traffic inside its borders.

    Local internet service providers (ISPs) have been instructed by the local government to force their respective users into installing a government-issued certificate on all devices, and in every browser. The certificate, once installed, will allow loc...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Cellphones can pose a crash threat on some Boeing 737 and 777 airplanes

    So there is some basis around risks of cellphones used on airplanes. It's not a general risk but the one's who know better than passengers will be the pilots and airplane operators so it is probably in the passengers' interests to listen to flight crew instructions. Yep airplanes are uncomfortable and it is inconvenient to not be able to use your phone, but at least now we have a bit more focussed information on what and wh...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Drupal Patches Critical Bug That Lets Hackers Take Over V8.7.4 Sites

    Updating to the 8.7.5 is very important given that attackers could leverage the vulnerability by visiting an URL and no registration or authentication level is required to abuse the impacted websites. Luckily, an exploit for this vulnerability is not yet available, however, in the event that one will be developed most sites running on Drupal 8.7.4 will be exposed to attacks given that "default or common module configurations a...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Afrihost launches Pure Fibre in South Africa – No shaping, throttling, or usage limits but at older "Home package" prices

    Just recently I was paying R1,117pm for uncapped 40Mbps fibre and Afrihost upped the speed to 100Mbps at the same price. But now with Pure Fibre they have done away with the soft cap and shaping at no additional cost. This is equivalent to the old Premium package that used to cost R1,000 more per month. They are also offering some very good migration deals.

    Certainly worth ...  more
  • Danie van der Merwe
    Office 365 declared illegal in German schools due to privacy risks - no way for the German government to monitor cloud access by US authorities

    This time around, the Hessian commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information (HBDI) isn't just saying that schools would prefer not to use Microsoft, he's stating that their use of Office 365 is outright illegal. In August 2017, the HBDI ruled that Office 365 could legally be used by schools so long as the back end for the school accounts w...  more