25 July 2012

Now, Skype Calls On The TV

Comcast subscribers: In the future, believing that the TV is talking to you might not be a sign of insanity. You may be getting a Skype video call.
Comcast Corp., the country’s largest cable company, is set to announce Tuesday that it plans to bring Skype calls to TV sets later this year.
Subscribers will then be able to rent a kit from Comcast that includes a webcam and an adapter that plugs into the TV. A new cable box remote will include a keyboard on the back, for typing chat messages.
Philadelphia-based Comcast hasn’t yet figured out what to charge for the kit, according to Catherine Avgiris, general manager of communications and data services.
Financial terms of the partnership between Comcast and Skype were not disclosed. Comcast wouldn’t say whether Skype would get some of what Comcast charges for the kit.
Subscribers will get notifications of incoming calls on their TVs and will be able to answer calls with full-screen video or in a window while watching TV.
Comcast plans to start trials of the system in the next few months. It has 17.4 million Internet subscribers.
Many high-end TVs already come with the ability to conduct Skype calls. Buyers usually have to add a Webcam for $150, but neither the TV maker nor Skype charge a monthly fee.
“We’ve seen an explosion, already, in the use of Skype in the living room,” said Neil Stevens, general manager of consumer services at Skype.
Cisco Systems Inc. launched a home videoconferencing device and service last year, but quickly had to cut the $599 price and $24.95 monthly fee, apparently because of weak demand. It later scaled back its marketing plans too, as part of a companywide shift away from consumer devices.
Comcast’s Skype adapter won’t work with Skype services that let users call phone numbers, or receive calls to a phone number. Instead, Comcast plans to bundle a limited version of Skype’s offerings with its own phone service, for which it charges $20 per month and up, to the adapter, so subscribers can place and receive phone calls through the TV set. That’s a feature it plans to add later, according to Comcast spokesman Peter Dobrow.
Skype, which is based in Luxembourg, has agreed to be bought by Microsoft Corp., the world’s biggest software maker, for $8.5 billion in a deal expected to close by the end of the year

The Prime Rival of Android Devices

The Android Operating System for mobile phones has taken the world by storm. It has come up as the leading operating system since its release and has been sought out by almost every mobile phone manufacturer on the planet. One of the contenders of the Android Operating System is the iOS by Apple Inc. This operating system is used exclusively by Apple products, most notably the iPhone.
The iPhone is the answer of Apple Inc. to the multitude of mobile phones which runs the Android Operating System. The first generation of phones by Apple was unveiled in 2007. Similar to other Smartphones, this phone has all the features necessary for it to be considered as a phone as well as adding new features which are again exclusive for Apple products.
The newest version of this phone has the application known as Siri. Siri is a digital personal assistant which a user can ask to do a multitude of jobs. Siri uses voice recognition software to detect the user's requests and cross references them with Apple's database. Any and all questions may be asked to Siri but the responses are limited only if the query does not reach a definite answer.
Apple's App Store is also available on this phone. The App Store is application distribution software managed by Apple Inc. Only applications which are compatible with the iOS platform are allowed to be uploaded on the App Store. Since its release in 2007, this phone has been constantly receiving upgrades to be able to contend with other mobile phone producer's models.
One of the advantages of this phone compared to other models is Siri. Siri was just an application created by Siri Inc. for the iOS platform during its conception. However, Apple Inc. has decided to buy the rights to Siri before they could release an Android supported version of the application.
Another advantage is the 5th generation's retina display. Apple boasts that the 5th generation iPhones have the largest pixel density of any phone available. Finally, battery life is greatly improved compared to Android running Smartphones. Smartphones running on the Android Operating System have the recurring problem of having low battery life while the iPhone does not.
One of the disadvantages of using this phone is the memory. The built in memory cannot be expanded unlike the Android Smartphones which can support a micro SD card. Another disappointment is the sealed battery. Battery life in this phone is great compared to Android Smartphones but it would be better if the battery could be replaced if it runs out during emergency situations. The biggest disadvantage however is the inability of the phone to transfer data to the computers quickly. All Apple products need the use of iTunes to transfer their data, music, video etc. This can be very hassling especially if you do not carry your laptop regularly. They also only allow the syncing of data to computers registered to an Apple product. An iPod Touch only allows up to 6 computers to be registered to it. Because of this, users cannot go to public computers to transfer their data.

A Pantech Swift Quickie

Ever heard of Pantech cell phones? Probably not, right? They're one of those unsung heroes of the mobile communications revolution because Pantech was one of the very first companies to put a handset in a consumer's... well, hand - yet few remember them anymore: these days, you're more likely to not find any Pantech cell phones than are you to find one, and even then it's likely a model designed for the low-end or downscale market, the kind that carriers tend to give out for little to no cost.
Take the Pantech Swift, available with AT&T. It's a basic little messaging phone that gets the job done. It's got a compact frame and is styled to appeal to, one imagines, teenagers. The Swift is fairly charming at first blush, but its pedigree as a very basic "workhorse lite" kind of handset soon reveals itself when you try to use it. Everything is just serviceable, "good enough for government." Beyond the fairly stylish looks, everything else about this phone says "free with a subscription." All's more the pity, then, that it's likely to cost thirty dollars even with a contract (still better than the seventy charged upon its debut).
There's a small just-under-three-inches touchscreen with QVGA resolution (that's three hundred and twenty pixels by two hundred and forty, for the non-techies) that offers three home screens, two of which are customizable by dragging and dropping your choice of widgets, such as that for the camera or another for activating Bluetooth functionality. Since it was evidently designed with the teeny-bopper market in mind, there are simplified button controls for social apps like Twitter, Facebook, and MySpace. A two-megapixel camera provides an opportunity for all those goofy-faced photos online, and a microSD slot allows users to store up to 32GB's worth of such visuals.
The Swift's compact keyboard is a typical one for this class of Verizon cell phones: four-row QWERTY with designated shortcuts. It isn't the most tactile or responsive, but it's comfortable enough and quite suitable for even long e-mails on the go. Bluetooth is included, and text, picture, video, and voice messaging are available. Unfortunately, there's no default spelling checker.
The Swift does come with the standard complement of office apps like an alarm clock, a calendar, calculators, and unit converters. Games can be downloaded for unlimited play or enjoyment by the month. All in all, this is one of Pantech's lower-end but still capable enough models - great for the kids.
Carol T. Dunn recommends All4CellPhones.com for great deals on the latest Verizon cell phones and accessories.

Meet Zebronics Wireless Companion 2 keyboard-mouse

Zebronics is out doing what it does best—offering people a taste of the good stuff at a significantly lower price.
This time it's a wireless keyboard-mouse combo called Zebronics Wireless Companion 2, priced at Rs 825 the device has a wireless range of nine meters and is powered by AAA size batteries.
The keyboard comes with 13 'multimedia function keys' that have been programmed for commonly performed tasks like controlling playback on the default media player. Surprisingly, this keyboard powers off just a single AAA battery.
The mouse has an optical sensor rated at 800Dpi and requires a pair of AAA batteries for power. Both these devices hook-up with the computer via the bundled USB wireless dongle. The Zebronics Wireless Companion 2 keyboard-mouse combo comes with one year replacement warranty.

Samsung Series 9 Notebook-Review

Samsung's new Series 9 notebook has the performance to go with the looks.
 From television sets to mobiles, there's no denying that being the slimmest gadget around does wonders for desirability, irrespective of the performance.
Samsung's new Series 9 notebook however, also has the performance to go with the looks. Clad in all-black duralumin (an alloy used in airplane construction, twice the strength of aluminum), the Series 9 is lightweight (1.3kg) and yet durable. The tradeoff with the slim design is that there is no optical drive and ports are minimal.
On the left side is a USB 2.0 port, microSD card slot, 3.5mm audio port and on the right side is a USB 3.0 port, mini HDMI and a proprietary port to connect the Ethernet adapter (the only adapter in the box). The ports are hidden under pull down covers much like the ones on the first gen Apple MacBook Air. The notebook has a 13.3-inch widescreen display with a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels.
It comes with Samsung's Superbright Plus technology that makes the display stand out with vivid colors, pin-sharp clarity and super-high brightness levels which are the highest we've seen. It also has a backlit chicklet-style keyboard with the function keys doubling up as keys for adjusting brightness, volume and switching between various power modes.
Keys with dual functions like the Wi-Fi /F12 key and function lock have blue LED indicators to show that they are active, which is very helpful. Right below the keyboard is the touchpad with integrated mouse buttons -a responsive affair with multi-touch capability. The keyboard and touchpad are very comfortable, though the design and style is directly lifted from Apple's MacBook.
Under the hood, our Series 9 test unit had a second generation Intel Core i5 1.4Ghz processor , Intel HD 3000 graphics and 4GB of RAM (up to 8GB RAM is supported).
It does away with a standard notebook hard drive in favour of a 128GB SSD drive (for speed, spacesaving and weight saving) and comes preloaded with Windows 7 Home Premium. It scored 4.7 on the Windows Experience Index with the lowest score for graphics performance.
With this rating, the notebook is great for most day-to-day work - browsing, working on documents, music, videos and playing online games. We even played a few games -the Series 9 had no issues running games like Counter-Strike CZ and Left for Dead at low settings.
Closing the lid puts it into sleep mode where no power is consumed, thus extending battery life. Also, thanks to the SSD and Samsung's 'Fast Start' technology, it takes just about 3 seconds to be fully functional from sleep mode.
Samsung claims a battery backup of 7 hours on a single charge, however, we managed just over five and half hours, which is great for such a slim notebook , but not up to the claim. The problem is the price. Pegged at Rs 99,990, it's priced higher than the top-end 13-inch Apple MacBook Air (Rs 98,900).
Even the Lenovo X1, which also weighs 1.3kg, has an with Intel Core i5 (2.5Ghz) processor, 8GB RAM, 160GB SSD and 13.3-inch gorilla glass display is priced at Rs 85,000. To be competitive, the Series 9 needs to drop its price by at least 10,000. And then it'll truly impress.

Why People Are Quitting Facebook

Facebook is now relying on developing countries to boost its numbers Privacy threats and fatigue has led 1 lakh Britons and six million users in the US to shut down their Facebook accounts, with the same pattern expected to follow in other countries too.
Facebook's growth rate has slowed for a second month in a row, ironically, when the social networking site was aiming to reach its goal of one billion active users.
Canada saw a fall of about 1.5 million users of the website, while in Russia and Norway numbers fell by more than 100,000 users.
The company is now relying on developing countries to boost its numbers.
Blogs are abuzz with speculations that the website could one day 'sputter into oblivion,' fearing the fate of its failing rival MySpace.
There is a point at which the site can no longer grow, once it has established itself in a country, according to Eric Eldon, from the website 'Inside Facebook', which obtained the figures.
"By the time Facebook reaches around 50% of the total population in a given country, growth generally slows to a halt," the Daily Mail quoted him as saying.
Internet psychologist Graham Jones has predicted that Facebook users would suffer the same kind of 'fatigue' that comes whenever men and women get bored with trying anything that is new.
"People get terribly excited about something new and after a while the novelty wears off," he explained.

24 July 2012

10 Free Tools For Windows PCs

Your Windows PC may not come with too much software pre-loaded, but you don’t need to spend anything to get these amazing tools.
Read on about to know about 10 free amazing tools for Windows PCs.
This nifty piece of software can record whatever you’re doing on the screen and make it into a video. Let’s say you need to demonstrate something on your PC to a friend, family member or broadcast it to the web - you start CamStudio, click record, minimise the windows and then go about what you need to do.
Once done, bring up CamStudio, stop recording and you’ll get a high-quality AVI video file of all your actions. It’s just so much simpler and clearer than using a camera to record a screen. Get it from camstudio.org.
This is what you need to use if you get stuck with something. With Crossloop, anyone can connect to your computer and temporarily take over - with your permission of course.
You don’t need to worry about complicated VNC clients or IP addresses, just as long both PCs/Macs have Crossloop installed and have decent internet connections, they can connect to each other. Connections are secure and only possible using a password - random passkeys are generated each time it starts. Get it from crossloop.com.
This is a great utility for virtual desktops. Let’s say you like have multiple windows open at the same time - so many that your poor desktop and taskbar are stressed to the max. With Dexpot, you have have four different desktops - each operating like an individual computer.
You can have different windows and different programs running in each, and switch between them with a keyboard shortcut.It’s especially useful if you’re using a laptop with a smaller screen. Get it from dexpot.de.
When you’re selling or giving away an old computer or hard drive, spare a thought for all your data which will probably still be on it (even if you delete) and easily recoverable with free software like Recuva.
With Eraser, you can securely erase all your data (or targeted files and folders) so that it can never be accessed again. Eraser overwrites your existing data with random patterns and you can choose the level of security you prefer. Get it from eraser.heidi.ie.
If you’re fed up with trying to remember multiple passwords, KeePass is the answer. It’s an open-source password keeper that keeps everything in a highly encrypted database.
You can store passwords, credit card information, bank IDs and so on - secure with one master password - and your data will be encrypted on your machine itself, using the most secure encryption algorithms currently available. Get it from keepass.info
With Recuva, you can recover documents that you have accidentally deleted, either from your computer’s built in hard drive, an external one, a connected digital camera or even a USB flash drive. The reason this works is simple - when you click delete, the file isn’t actually deleted, it just becomes hidden, freeing up space and ready to be overwritten with something else.
As long as you haven’t overwritten loads of data on it already or formatted the memory device, it should work fine. Get it from piriform.com/recuva.
If you’ve always wanted a slick software dock & launcher like Mac OS X, get RocketDock. Not only is it lightweight (doesn’t hog system resources), but it’s completely customisable - you can choose a location, choose from various themes and animation effects, add/ remove shortcuts with ease (drag and drop) and If you prefer, you could even use it as a complete replacement for the standard Windows taskbar - in this mode, your applications will be minimised to the dock. Get it from rocketdock.com
Screenleap is a screen sharing service, but one that works through any regular web browser - you don’t need to download and install anything or even sign up as long as you have Java (which you probably already do).
The people you want to share your screen with can even access it using a web browser on a smartphone or tablet without needing any app. Plus, the biggest advantage is that you can share with multiple people simultaneously. Head to screenleap.com to get started with sharing your screen.
If you have files on your computer which no one should ever see but you, use TrueCrypt. It’s an automatic and real-time open source encryption software that can secure everything on your hard drive, making it inaccessible to an unauthorised person (even an experienced hacker).
You can also use it to created an encrypted volume within a drive. It uses technology that utilises the multi-core processors of today to deliver encryption-decryption without slowing down your system. Get it from truecrypt.org.
In its most basic, XBMC is a media centre software for Windows, but it’s actually so much more than that. If you have a PC connected to a TV or regularly connect your laptop for movies, music or viewing photographs, XBMC is a must-have.
The interface is customisable, attractive, intuitive and visible at a comfortable viewing distance from the TV (unlike the normal Windows interface). What makes XBMC so special is the vibrant user community and the numerous add-ons. Get it from xbmc.org.

8 Steps to Rescue Your Wet Gadgets

The monsoon is welcome for the relief it brings from the scorching summer, but it means one more thing: your gadgets are in danger. Who doesn't fear the prospect of a heavy downpour soaking the laptop in the bag, the camera in its case or the phone in the pocket? And the inevitable can happen no matter how much care you take. Don't panic. Just follow this simple guide:
Whether it's your phone, camera or laptop, the first thing to do when your gadget gets wet, is to switch it off and remove the battery
While damp, power going to the circuitry can cause irrevocable damage.
Dismantle it
Next, take out any other detachable parts. For example, the memory card or the SIM card. Even if you have a loop or charm on your phone, remove it.
Shake it off
Your gadget isn't immune to the laws of physics, so tilt it or shake it to drain out as much water as you can, but do it gently.
Wipe out
Use paper towels to wipe the gadget dry. But be careful: remember not to be rough when wiping the bits with open circuitry.
Blow to dry
Air is obviously helpful, but don't leave the gadget under the fan in an open room. Also, do not use a hair dryer on it. Hot or unpurified air isn't good for your gizmo.
Instead, hold the wet device in front of the vent of your air conditioner for a few minutes.
The Rice Trick
It might sound a bit weird, but burying your gadget in raw rice is great to suck out the moisture. Grab a deep pot and fill it up with clean, sifted rice — you don't want dirt getting into the machinery. Then, slowly and carefully shove your gizmo in and seal the top. The longer you keep it sealed, the drier the device will get.
We have found that a full day is enough to dry a phone that got wet in the rain, but depending on the severity of the situation, you can leave it there longer — it's not going to do it any harm.
Alcohol dabs
Once you take your gadget out of the rice bowl, don't rush to switch it on.
There will be remnants of water. A helpful tip is to dip a cotton ear bud in alcohol spirit and gently dab it on the circuitry and parts that seem damp. This helps the water evaporate faster when you rest the device.
Rest a bit
At this point, if you think there is still moisture left in the gizmo, place it on a towel for a few hours before repeating the steps starting with The Rice Trick.
Finally, if you are convinced that there is no more moisture in the gadget, you can reassemble the parts and switch it on.

5-inch, 1080p Smartphone Displays From LG

LG Display has announced a 5-inch, full HD LCD panel for smartphones – the highest resolution mobile panel to date, giving a clear indication that the 720p display on your current top-end smartphone won't reign supreme for long. This new, 5-inch Full HD LCD panel is a step forward from the existing mobile display technology and is based on AH-IPS (Advanced High Performance In-Plane Switching) technology. It features a 440ppi and 1920x1080 resolution, providing, for the first time, Full HDTV quality on a smartphone. LG had announced that they were indeed developing AH-IPS panels for smartphones. Here's how AH-IPS improves on the existing technology.
 This new generation of In-Plane Swtiching showcases better colour accuracy, which in turn allows it to reproduce the original colour without any distortion. In addition to this, it provides greater light transmission, which translates to lower power consumption, while delivering exceptional picture quality, thereby making it ideal for use in outdoor settings. It also provides for better viewing angles with more stability.
 Taking a look at the existing display technologies, the iPhone 4S has an IPS panel with a ppi of 326, compared to the HTC One X's 312 ppi density with a super IPS screen and a 720p display. The soon-to-be announced for India Galaxy S III comes with a ppi of 306, while the popular Galaxy Note has 285 ppi. To put it simply, the higher the PPI the more indistinguishable the pixels are, giving the user a very refined display. The new line-up was to be employed in 3.5 and 4.5-inch panels for smartphones and LG has stayed true to its promise. With a 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio, this new panel is also 0.5 inches larger, 2.2 times denser in pixels, and 1.3 times more advanced in ppi than the preceding 4.5-inch panel at 329ppi and 1280x720.
"As smartphones become increasingly valued for how well they do multimedia and with the rapid growth of LTE enabling faster large file transfers, our new 5" Full HD LCD panel is certain to prove a significant asset to the mobile market," said Sang-Deok Yeo, CTO and Executive Vice President of LG Display. "With the world's highest resolution smartphone display, LG Display continues to remain a step ahead in developing the most innovative in display technology products."
 The 5-inch Full HD LCD panel from LG Display is expected to be released during the second half of this year, and will be on exhibit for the first time at SID 2012 Display Week in Boston, starting June 4. LG has been a popular display supplier for most of the smartphone companies and if all goes according to plan, then it won't be too long before we see 1080p displays on smartphones. The future of displays is here, well almost!

6 Tips to Bring Down Your Internet Bill

Ever been handed a huge bill for data usage on your phone or broadband connection? Most connections impose a data limit and its up to you to track and control usage.
Here are six simple tips to limit your data usage and avoid your internet bill from shooting up.
Video chatting
Video chatting (in 3G, such as with apps like Skype or Fring) are big data hogs. About 30 mins of usage will consume about 100 to 300 MB of your monthly data limit.
Connect to Wi-Fi to use these services and cut data costs.
Streaming video
Streaming video from YouTube and similar sites can consume upto 200 MB per hour.
Switch settings
On many mobile devices you can temporarily switch off data services when not in use - or switch to 2G/EDGE instead of 3G. This way, apps that are constantly using data in the background (like weather and email) will be forced to use less data.
Wi-Fi tethering
Wi-Fi tethering or sharing your 3G connection with other nearby devices can use more data than you realise.
Online gaming
Are you gaming online? Online gaming, especially with high-end 3D games can consume up to 100MB per hour. If you stream a lot of videos, switching to a lower quality can reduce your data usage by over 50%.
Keep a check on your usage using any of the free PC/Mac tools
Malicious software
Malicious software on your computer could be silently using up your monthly data limit. If your bills are not in line with your usage, get your computer checked for viruses & trojans.

5 Ways To Control Your Privacy On Google

Like it or not, your relationship with Google is becoming a lot more intimate.
The company recently expanded its ability to combine data from its various services to create a highly detailed profile on you.
Google says it's doing that to simplify its privacy policy and improve your experience on sites such as Gmail, Picasa, Google Plus and YouTube. But there's a business reason, too. Google gets a chance to use the data it collects to tailor ads that align more precisely with your interests, and those personalized ads are among the most lucrative for the company.
Many privacy groups complain that Google is forcing you to accept these changes. The European Union is investigating whether the new approach violates its data-protection rules.
Before getting too worked up, it's important to understand what's happening.
Google has long monitored its users in order to target advertisements. If you've been reading a lot of news articles on golf, don't be surprised to see golf products pitched in graphical, display ads as you move across the Web. Google identifies you not by name, but by a string of characters attached to your Web browser. Google also promises not to target ads based on sensitive attributes such as sexual orientation, religion and serious health conditions.
Google also keeps logs of your searches and other activities, partly as feedback to improve services, the company says. Those logs don't have your name, but rather a numeric Internet address associated with your computer and the same browser-based characters used for ads. That Internet address also gives Google your approximate location, so a search may return local plumbers and not those 500 miles away.
Things change when you sign into a Google account - the kind you have for Gmail. When you do that, Google will have personal attributes such as your name, address and a list of friends. The new policy gives Google more ability to combine such data from email, YouTube, search and other services, beyond the limited rights it had in the past.
Keep in mind that as much as Google makes promises to guard data about you, it's legally bound to respond to subpoenas and other government requests. That's no different from policies at Facebook, Yahoo and other websites. This was the case with Google's old policy as well.
I find no reason to be paranoid online, but it's best to know what's happening so you can take appropriate precautions if you feel the need. I really don't care if Google's ad system mistakenly thinks I'm a teenage girl because I search for the latest on ABC Family's "Pretty Little Liars." But I'd care if ads popped up on my work computer based on a job search I might have done at home the night before.
Here are five things you can do to guard your privacy:
1. Manage your sign-ins
Remember, the new policy affects what happens when you sign in. You can avoid a deeper level of tracking and personalization simply by not signing in.
Of course, some services such as email and photo sharing on Picasa do require signing in. You can get around that by using different browsers to keep your identities separate. You could, for instance, use Google's Chrome to sign in for email and Firefox to sign in under a different account for YouTube. You could then use Microsoft's Internet Explorer to search the Web without signing in. That way, Google will see you as three different people and not link your activities.
If you want to stick with one browser, one approach is to use other providers such as Microsoft's Bing for search and Yahoo's Flickr for photos.
Keep in mind that Google still collects data about your use when you're not signed in, but it won't have as much information on you.
2. Review what Google knows:
Google makes it easier than many other services to see what it knows about you.
Start with the Dashboard at http://google.com/dashboard . You'll have to sign in to use it. Go through each service to make sure it's up to date. On the right columns are links for managing your settings and profiles.
If you've enabled a feature called Web History, check the lists of past searches and delete any you don't want Google to remember. You can suspend recording by visiting http://google.com/history .
Part of what's changing is that Google will now be allowed to use your Web history to suggest videos you might like to see on YouTube. So if I've visited a lot of sites on "Pretty Little Liars," YouTube might recommend video clips featuring some of its stars.
Next, check out Google's Ads Preferences manager at http://google.com/ads/preferences . That page reflects what Google thinks it knows about you when you're not signed in. You can remove or edit categories of interests.
If you don't like targeted ads, you can throw Google off by adding a bunch of fake interests. Or simply turn it off by hitting the "Opt out" link and button. You'll still get ads, just not targeted ones. The page might give you a few chuckles, as Google's guess of your age and gender is often wrong.
The Dashboard is tied to your Google account, while the ad manager is specific to your browser, so you'll have to do this with each browser on each computer or mobile device you use.
3. Take advantage of your browser's privacy modes
Major browsers offer a stealth mode. Typically, that means things you do aren't recorded in your browser's history files, and any data files added by a website for tracking get deleted after you're done.
On Chrome, look for "new incognito window" under the picture of the wrench. Microsoft's Internet Explorer calls it "InPrivate Browsing" under "Safety." The feature is called "Private Browsing" in Firefox and Apple's Safari.
While you're at it, you can delete data already recorded by the browser. Look for a menu item that says "delete," "clear" or "reset."
Keep in mind that some services won't function properly in stealth mode. Netflix's streaming service won't operate, and Gmail won't store password information to automatically sign in next time.
Also, Google will still have your numeric Internet address. Stealth mode will curtail tracking but won't make you completely anonymous.
4. Use anonymisers
Several services are available to help you mask your Internet address. Requests to retrieve email or get search results will get bounced through multiple servers to get to a website such as Google. That means Google would have the address of the last computer on that chain, but not yours.
A popular free option is Tor, though it requires a software download and can slow down Web surfing.
5. Stay offline
Even if you take all of the above steps, it won't guarantee anonymity or track-free browsing. For starters, your Internet service provider has information on you regardless of what Google has and does with it. With a subpoena, it can link your name to nameless IDs in Google's logs.
The products and techniques I've outlined here can help, but the only way to completely protect your privacy is to disconnect.
You may actually like the policy changes. Combining data allows Google to do such things as suggest spelling corrections in Google's online word processing program for contacts you have in Gmail or chat.
Many people complained when Facebook introduced feeds of friends' status updates to save you from having to sift through dozens of profile pages to see what your friends are up to. These days, few people can imagine Facebook without that.

5 Things You Didn't Know Your Phone Can Do

The multi-tasking monster in your pocket is far more powerful than you think. Some intelligent apps, a few hardware additions, and these incredible-sounding functions are literally at your finger tips. Here are top 5 picks:
Home controls
This one requires more investment. You need to install the Crestron automation system (price on request from india@crestronasia. com), download the free Crestron Mobile G app and configure it to your home's control unit.
Your iOS or Android device controls the system over Wi-Fi or any cellular data network, even when you're not home. The things you can do: adjust the AC temperature, curtains, lights, media playback/volume and even unlock the front door.

 Car controls
Start your car, lock/unlock all doors, release the boot (if your car is equipped with electronic boot release) - the SmartStart system from Viper Technologies does it all.
All you need is the SmartStart kit (get it from www.viper.com, priced between $250 to $539.99) and the SmartStart app for your iPhone. The shout value is a reason enough.
But there are practical benefits too. For instance, it can get the car AC working on a hot day even before you even reach the parking lot.
Photographs with DSLR
If you have a compatible Canon or Nikon DSLR, the DSLR Camera Remote app for iPad/iPhone ($9.99- $24.99) can activate the camera's shutter, record video, adjust exposure, bracketing, ISO, white balance, etc.
Connect your camera to a computer using USB or Wi-Fi, install the free DSLR Camera Remote Server application and get the app on your iOS device.
Personal spy drones
Parrot's AR.Drone 2.0 ($299 excluding shipping and customs) is a quadricopter with dual video cameras controlled using an iOS or Android device and a free app by the same name.
The drone emits its own Wi-Fi network, which connects with your device. Flying is controlled by the phone's accelerometer. A built-in camera records 720p HD videos from the drone that can be saved on the connected device.
Infrared remote controls
No, your phone doesn't have an infrared emitter, but with Griffi n's Beacon ($69.99, excluding shipping and customs), it sure acts like it does. The sleek, stone-like device syncs with your smartphone via Bluetooth.
Download the free iOS app called Dijit Universal Remote and configure your appliances with the app. Your phone will operate anything controlled by an infrared remote - TV, AC, heater, etc. What about dongles and cords? Not required. Click a button in the app, the phone sends a signal to the Beacon, which converts it into an infrared signal and transmits it to the appliance.

Super Computer by Stephen Hawking

Renowned theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking has launched the most powerful shared-memory supercomputer in Europe.

Hawking anticipates that the COSMOS supercomputer, manufactured by SGI and the first system of its kind, will open up new windows on the universe, a university release said.

During the launch, which is part of the Numerical Cosmology 2012 workshop at the Centre for Mathematical Sciences at the University of Cambridge, Hawking said, "We have made spectacular advances in cosmology and particle physics recently."
"Cosmology is now a precision science, so we need machines like COSMOS to reach out and touch the real universe, to investigate whether our mathematical models are correct," he said.
The COSMOS supercomputer is part of the Science and Technology Facilities Council DiRAC High Performance Computing facility, a national service for UK cosmologists, astronomers and particle physicists, as well as non-academic users.
The Numerical Cosmology 2012 workshop, supported by Intel, has drawn together leaders in computational cosmology with technological innovators.
Hawking added, "I hope that we will soon find an ultimate theory which, in principle, would enable us to predict everything in the universe."
"However, participants at this workshop will be pleased to learn that this will not end our quest for a complete understanding," he said.
"Even if we do find the ultimate theory, we will still need supercomputers to describe how something as big and complex as the universe evolves, let alone why humans behave the way they do!", Hawking said.
The COSMOS consortium's current programme of research aims to advance the understanding of the origin and structure of the universe, primarily through the scientific exploitation of the cosmic microwave sky.
Jeremy Yates, the Project Director for DiRAC, said, "The COSMOS supercomputer is an essential and vital part of the DiRAC Facility. DiRAC now offers five leading systems to UK researchers, two of which are in Cambridge."
"It allows the UK cosmology and extra-solar planet research communities to take a leading role in understanding how structure was formed in the very early universe and the composition of the atmospheres of extra-solar planets," Yates said.
"These activities will deepen our understanding of the origins of the cosmos and life, and make a vital contribution to the knowledge economy," he said.