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    DOWNLOAD: On this week's all-star episode: We present Avram Piltch, Online Editorial Director of Laptop magazine, who will discuss the ins and outs of the "Heartbleed" bug, affecting some versions of the open source OpenSSL, which impacted a huge portion of the Internet, the magazine's first review of the Samsung Galaxy S5 smartphone, and a number of Microsoft-related topics, including Office for the iPad and the forthcoming Windows Phone 8.1 update.

    Outspoken commentator Peter Cohen, Managing Editor for iMore, gives you his slant on the "Heartbleed" issue and the new products that might come from Apple during June's WWDC conference. He will talk about some of the changes you might expect in the next versions of IOS and OS X along with the possibilities for an iWatch.

    Click to hear our latest episode: The Tech Night Owl Live — April 12, 2014

    For more episodes, click here to visit the show’s home page.


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    Time for Another Apple TV Rumor: Ho Hum!

    April 8th, 2014

    For a while I thought that the media fetish over the possibility of an Apple TV set was over and done with. But it's back again with yet another alleged supply chain rumor about Apple sampling 65-inch flat panels. This time, they are reportedly using OLED, a promising technology that has yet to appear in a product people can actually afford.

    OLED, short for "organic light-emitting diode" is yet another technology employed in digital displays. The supposed advantage over the various LCD schemes used now include extremely deep black levels, high contrast levels, and infinite viewing angles. The latter is the biggest advantage all things being equal, because it means that a family doesn't have to crowd together on the sofa to get the best TV picture.

    Continue Reading...


    Newsletter Issue #749: Designing Gear for Regular People

    April 7th, 2014

    A big argument made in favor of Windows, and even Google's Android OS, is that they are friendlier towards the needs of the power user. There are more system adjustments you can make to customize the experience to your personal taste, and that is supposed to be a good thing.

    This harkens back to the early days of the PC era, where you did everything via the command line. When Apple came out with the first graphical user interface that actually caught on — although it was never, ever dominant in the industry — the end result, the Macintosh, was dismissed as a toy.

    The theory went that, in order to properly use a personal computer for your business, you had to master the ins and outs of the command line to provide the correct user experience and be productive. Just being productive out of the box didn't necessarily occur to these people.

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    Apple Versus Samsung — The Real Winners

    April 4th, 2014

    So we are once again immersed in yet another trial involving Apple and Samsung over intellectual property. Each company accuses the other of patent violations. But it's not a crime and the offender doesn't go to prison. It's a civil action, and the loser may be ordered to pay the winner a sum of money, and may even be ordered not to sell the allegedly infringing products.

    Yet these two companies have been embroiled in expensive legal battles for several years. There have been wins, losses, draws, but you can still buy iPhones and iPads, and you can certainly buy Samsung smartphones and phablets. Maybe Samsung has done a little interface tweaking here and there, but at the end of the day, despite all the skirmishes, nothing much has changed.

    Well, unless you are one of the lawyers representing either party, in which case you are earning huge fees, and can only wish for those huge fees to continue.

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    Windows Phone: Taking Hints from iPhone

    April 3rd, 2014

    Windows Phone has been less than a success for Microsoft. With a low market share, only exceeding that of the fading BlackBerry brand, Microsoft's mobile OS has basically gone nowhere. Indeed, the company's purchase of Nokia's smartphone division, which has seen better days, may be one the only possibility to save the platform, and it's a risky one at that.

    Not that Microsoft has helped. The company famously prevented devices shipping with Windows Phone 7 from being able to use Windows Phone 8. Imagine, for example, a new iPhone that came with iOS 6 being excluded from running iOS 7. Yes, older hardware isn't compatible, but the iPhone 4, which shipped with iOS 4 in 2010, is.

    Well, Microsoft has unveiled the latest update to Windows Phone, version 8.1. The key feature is Cortana, which is a voice assistant that is heavily influenced by Siri. The name comes from a character in Halo, a popular game, and is reportedly being voiced by the same performer.

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