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How To Measure Your Internet Speed

How to measure your Internet speed

This is a basic tip but it comes up all the time. Everyone needs a fast Internet connection. You might want to check your Internet speed out of curiosity, or because you suspect that your ISP is not delivering the connection that you were promised, or because some problem has developed with your equipment or your network. […] continued

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Google Performs An Amazing Magic Trick With Artificial Intelligence

Google magic with artificial intelligence

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” – Arthur C. Clarke

Google gave one of the all-time great technology demos on stage this week at Google I/O, its developer conference.

Before you do anything else, watch this video of Google CEO Sundar Pichai presenting Google Duplex. Take four minutes. It’s worth it. […] continued

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How To Use Google To Change Your Image

Google logo with HMTL markup

If you’re looking for a picture to use in a project – a Powerpoint presentation, Word document, blog post, whatever – you probably do a Google image search. Google has made that a bit more difficult.

A few weeks ago Google removed a button that made it easy to save images from a web search. […] continued

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How Microsoft Became Uncool And Lost Touch With Consumers

How Microsoft became uncool and lost the consumer market

There was a time when Windows was cool. A long time ago, people lined up to get new versions of Windows when they went on sale. Maybe not quite the numbers of people outside of Apple stores at the height of iPhone madness, but still – Microsoft was pretty cool.

When the iPhone was released in 2007, Microsoft began its long decline with consumers. […] continued

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Could Microsoft Have Kept Windows Relevant?

Could Microsoft have chosen a different path?

We have arrived at a point where Microsoft no longer has a Windows division. To a generation of computer users, Windows was the product that defined Microsoft and defined our own relationship to technology. Now that defining product is a legacy, used by many but beloved by few.

In this article: Could Microsoft have done anything differently? […] continued

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Net Neutrality & SESTA: The Big Will Grow Bigger

Net neutrality & SESTA - the tech giants get bigger

Previously: Tech Giants And World Domination

The repeal of Obama-era net neutrality rules by the Federal Communications Commission will take effect on April 23.

This week the Senate approved SESTA – a new law that purports to crack down on sex trafficking – after the House approved it last month. […] continued

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Tech Giants And World Domination

Five companies dominate the Internet

Five companies – Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, and Microsoft – dominate everything that happens in technology. They arguably wield more power than many governments and they have an outsized influence on the global economy.

These dominant platforms have created barriers for competitors. We haven’t had a major new technology company emerge in more than ten years. […] continued

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Around The World In 80 Taps: Google Pay, Apple Pay, And Contactless Payments

NFC mobile phone payment

I never used a credit card in Australia. I bought coffee and sandwiches and souvenirs and dinners and clothing, but I never pulled out my wallet. I never used cash, either.

I tapped.

You should tap.

Australian merchants accept mobile payments with Google Pay or Apple Pay for almost every transaction. […] continued

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Google Blocks Ads In Chrome, Kind Of

Google blocks ads in Chrome

Google has updated Chrome so it will block ads on some websites if the ads violate standards established by the Coalition For Better Ads. Google and Facebook are members of the Coalition. Google and Facebook are also the two companies that profit the most from web advertising, controlling almost 75% of all digital advertising in the United States. […] continued

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Looking Forward: Google Home, Amazon Echo & Home Assistants

Google Home, Amazon Echo & other home assistants

The battle between Amazon and Google in the market for home assistants will be the source of the most interesting technology advances in 2018.

You probably know the basics. Perhaps you have an Amazon Echo or Google Home in your kitchen already. You may not be aware, though, of how broad the vision is for these devices and how far Amazon and Google are prepared to take them. […] continued

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Rules For Computer And Online Safety 2018

Computer and online safety 2018 - Stop, Think, Act

These are the rules for computer and online safety in 2018. You can download a copy here.

You will be safe if you are cautious. Stop and think before you click on links, before you call unfamiliar phone numbers, before you install programs, and before you fill in passwords.  Only your vigilance will protect you against bad guys. […] continued

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Looking Forward: Always Connected Computers

Always Connected computers

Stretch your imagination.

Imagine that you pull your laptop out and pop the lid open and start using it right away. There’s no delay, no swirling circle – it’s just on, bang, every time. You put your finger on the fingerprint reader and you’re logged in immediately.

Now imagine that the computer is always online with a working internet connection. […] continued

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Meltdown & Spectre: What You Need To Know About Intel’s Security Disaster

Meltdown & Spectre - Intel's security disaster

Nearly every modern processor has security flaws that potentially could allow hackers to steal data from any computer or server. The two related problems, code-named Meltdown and Spectre, have the technology industry in a tizzy and spilled over to the mainsteam press a few days ago. They are difficult to fix and alarming to read about. […] continued

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The 2017 Bruceb News Year In Review

The 2017 Bruceb News Year In Review

A year ago I wrote this prediction: “The word of the year for 2017 is “chaos.” Write it down, seal it in an envelope, open it up a year from now and see if I got it right.”

I think I get full marks. (Although Dictionary.com chose “complicit” as the word of the year, which has a certain snarky charm.)

We are in a transitional time in technology, with a handful of very large companies – Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft – accumulating power and wealth and dominating the landscape. […] continued

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Microsoft Is Moving Past Windows

Microsoft stock price 2017

If you’re an individual or small business Windows user, you might have the wrong idea about how Microsoft is doing.

We all tend to generalize from our own experiences. You can be forgiven for thinking that Microsoft’s future is dim when Outlook has just crashed or you’re paralyzed by an unexpected and unwelcome Windows update. […] continued

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