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Web Apps We Love To Hate

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first_imgTags:#Analysis#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market This list is a group of companies we wish would justgo away. Their basis is controversial to say the least. Recently, Wired publishedan article Exploring The Dark Side of Crowdsourcing, which shined light onsome shady startups. The article discussed the potential downfalls of socialmedia and web 2.0, or at least the seedier activities – e.g. black markets forsocial news votes, or fake commercial comments on blogs. Usually the intentions of thesecompanies are not in the best interest of ordinary Internet users. Let’s check themout… and btw we are using the ‘nofollow’ link attribute so these companies don’t getany further search engine juice!BuyBlogCommentsRecently we profiled this company. I think the following statement on the frontpage of the company website sums them up: A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai... Related Posts “Finally you can purchase quality blog comments without the stress of finding someoneto write the comments, or buying some high priced automated program. We specialize inselling blog comments for blackhatters who are looking for good quality backlinks.”In other words, the company is looking to add further comment spam to blogs.User/Submitter and Subvert and ProfitThese sites are essentially creating a black market for ‘votes’ on social news siteslike digg and StumbleUpon. By bringing together advertisers andpaid ‘voters’, these ill-intentioned startups are attempting to artificially inflate thepopularity of advertiser links. This not only degrades the quality of content, but alsoruins the overall user experience at social media websites.RSS Equalizer and RSS Content Builder These two tools help website owners automaticallyturn RSS feeds into website content. If used legitimately, they can be useful. But moreoften than not, these tools are used to steal other peoples content with the intention offinancial gain.This is a huge issue in the blogosphere. Often blog content is repurposedillegitimately. Because search traffic and incoming links drive page views, thistranslates to unearned ad revenue at the expense of the original publisher.Any black-hat SEO oufit or link farm These illegitimate outlets are engaging in illicitSEO techniques by gaming the search engines and artificially inflating PageRanks. Thismeans less relevant search engine results for the user and more traffic for the cheater.The upshot is useless SEO-tailored landing pages and added Internet clutter.Search engines are in a constant battle to stay on top of the game, especially Google(as the biggest search engine). But black-hatters are always nipping at their heels,finding new ways to beat the algorithms and make the web a less desirable place.MySpace Finally, we come to MySpace. Note: we don’t classifyMySpace in the same category as the scum above, but nevertheless this king of socialnetworks has committed many design sins. Tiled backgrounds, flashing text, and clutteredlayouts. Did I mention illegible text and comment SPAM? MySpace has basically morphedinto Geocities 2.0.ConclusionObviously, some of you will disagree with the companies listed above. Tell us why inthe comments below. And who else do you think should be on the list? Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic... aidan henrylast_img

Pennsylvania ~ Corporate Income, Miscellaneous Taxes: Philadelphia Enacts Healthy Beverages Tax Credit

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first_imgA Philadelphia ordinance creates a healthy beverages tax credit available against the business income and receipts tax. Beginning in 2017, a “qualifying merchant” that provides healthy beverages for sale in its store will be eligible for a credit equal to the amount the “merchant cost” that year exceeds the “merchant cost” for the immediately preceding tax year, up to a maximum of $2,000. Unused tax credits can be carried forward.“Merchant cost” is the amount paid by the qualifying merchant to purchase healthy beverages for sale in the merchant’s store. A “healthy beverage” is a non-alcoholic beverage that does not list as an ingredient any form of caloric sugar-based sweetener, including, but not limited to, sucrose, glucose or high fructose corn syrup; or any form of artificial sugar substitute, including stevia, aspartame, sucralose, neotame, acesulfame potassium (Ace-K), saccharin, and advantame.Philadelphia Bill No. 160552, Philadelphia City Council, effective June 20, 2016last_img

Missouri River highest since 2013 in Jefferson City

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first_imgThe Missouri River is now the highest it’s been in nearly six years in Jefferson City.It crested at nearly 28 feet early Monday morning. That’s moderate flood stage. It reached 30.83 feet on June 2, 2013.Glasgow is still seeing major flooding, over 32 feet. The river is predicted to drop now in mid-Missouri.We got more than two inches of rain since last Thursday, leading to the latest jump in the river levels.Highway 87 is still closed between Boonville and New Franklin due to flooding. Route 179 is closed just west of Boone County at Sandy Hook.last_img

3 Tips for Securing Home Cameras

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first_imgInstalling a home surveillance camera system can add great benefits but also may introduce new risks to privacy and network security. The goal is to increase the security and peace of mind, while avoiding cybersecurity threats. Here are three tips to consider when purchasing, installing, and configuring your new home camera system.The RisksHome internet connected cameras are targets for cybercriminals. Recently a number of large Internet-of-Things (IoT) attacks have occurred where hacker have compromise hundreds of thousands of devices and enlisted them in massive botnets. These collections of ordinary devices, such as IP Cameras, DVRs, and home routers, are then directed by their bot-herder to all send network traffic to a target destination. The massive flow of data overwhelms the target site and makes it unavailable.  A recent attack against DYN, an Internet DNS lookup service, took out much of the U.S. East Coast access to Twitter, Spotify, Netflix, Amazon, Tumblr, Reddit, PayPal and other sites. Hacking home internet connected devices has become a powerful tool for cybercriminals. That home camera you are considering could add to the problem and even be used by hackers to spy on you!Tips for Securing Home CamerasMost attacks are not incredibly sophisticated. They can be traced back to insecurely designed products, absence of patches, and poor installation configurations. Security does not need to be difficult or time consuming, but it does require forethought and care.1. Choose the vendor wiselyIt all starts with choice. If privacy and security is important to you, it should be part of your purchase criteria. Not all home camera vendors are equal. Look for ones which works hard to keep safe your privacy and security. How do you tell? Go out to their webpage and look beyond their marketing advertisements, as everyone will splash the word “secure” everywhere. The question you must consider is do they take it seriously and deliver? Look to see if they publish security updates, is there a security team, and do they talk in detail how they secure their products and services.No product is safe for indefinitely, especially in the Internet of Things (IoT) world. What is important, is the level of commitment a company places on keeping their products secure for their customers. It is highly desirable if they are producing security patches and explaining what vulnerabilities they are closing. Transparency is a sign of trust. For your part, you must be sure to patch and keep products up to date.Many companies don’t bother to have a security team. It is a major warning sign if the vendor is without such expertise. It means they are not likely designing in robust security features, don’t have people looking at vulnerabilities, not developing patches, and not verifying security in updates.Those with a security team should be open in the controls designed into the product, testing criteria, certifications, and what bugs they have closed. Professionals work hard and want to build trust with their customers. I like companies who also have bug bounty programs that reward white-hat hackers who find vulnerabilities and bring them to the attention of the company. Having the hacker community helping make your products more secure is a good thing.The first and most important step is yours. You must select a trustworthy partner who is supplying the camera, software, and any additional services. Look at reviews, comments from owners, and by security professionals who test these cameras. Choose wisely and you will be rewarded.2. Setup in a non-sensitive areaCameras are great ways to watch over your home. But expect at some time, even the best products, could be compromised for a period of time. Therefore, placement is hugely important. Entry, common areas, and even watching over babies are great places to setup cameras. Bedrooms, changing rooms, bathrooms, and other private areas are not optimal. Many modern cameras have microphones and other sensors. So even in common areas, you might want to consider what you are saying. Home cameras are tailored for easy setup and minimal fuss when dealing with data. Most work with cloud services which store data and make it accessible to you anywhere on most devices. A great feature, but that also means the recordings are not directly under your control and it is another place for hackers to target. So consider what data you want in the cloud. You don’t want embarrassing or private clips appearing on the internet. Where you setup the camera will determine the limits of how uncomfortable such situations become.3. Change default passwords Home cameras come with a number of default settings to facilitate easy setup. Most don’t need to be modified, but the default password should be changed! Change them to a unique and strong password which you don’t use anywhere else. Store it somewhere safe. Worst case, if you forget it, the can typically be reset on the camera itself. Many of the current variants of IoT botnets are targeting the vast number of devices which still have default passwords, which are published on the Internet, thus granting them full access to cameras. Some vendors are now forcing users to change the password upon installation, but many still don’t. Don’t be an easy target. Be smart and change the default password, as it makes a significant difference.Home cameras a great. They provide a new sense of security and flexibility to our modern lives. It is important to balance those benefits with the accompanying risks. By following a few steps, you are increasing the controls and making yourself a less attractive target. Enjoy your new camera with the confidence of security and privacy.Interested in more? Follow me on Twitter (@Matt_Rosenquist) and LinkedIn to hear insights and what is going on in cybersecurity.last_img

Coast on the legendary dream machine

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first_imgOriginally designed as an efficient and practical runabout, the Mini Cooper has evolved as the embodiment of the fun of motoringIf you've drooled over the final scenes of the 2003 remake of The Italian Job then you're already sold on the Mini Cooper. The movie ends with a thrilling chase,Originally designed as an efficient and practical runabout, the Mini Cooper has evolved as the embodiment of the fun of motoringIf you've drooled over the final scenes of the 2003 remake of The Italian Job then you're already sold on the Mini Cooper. The movie ends with a thrilling chase in brightly painted Mini Coopers through subways, sewers, staircases and streets of Los Angeles. The choice of car was no doubt inspired by the fact that the original 1969 British movie, The Italian Job, starring Michael Caine, used the original Mini Cooper as the getaway car of choice.Having seen the light of day in 1959, the Mini was only a decade old then but had already won the hearts and minds of generations, with a devoted fan following across all strata of society, from the hip housewife to the hippie roadtripper. In fact, in 1999 the Mini was voted the second most influential car of the 20th century after the Ford Model T.The Mini was designed by Sir Alec Issigonis. It stood out as a fresh new automotive design because it had a front wheel drive layout (not the norm then as it is today) which eliminated the need for a propeller shaft and a rear differential; hence the floor of the passenger cabin could be flat which meant more room for baggage and passengers.Its simplistic design and practicality ensured the car was an immediate hit. From easy transport for grannies to winning Monte Carlo rallies, the car performed every role with equal panache and soon became an icon of British motoring in the 1960's.The 'Cooper' attachment came in 1961 when John Newton Cooper, a Britisher who tinkered about with cars to make them race and rally worthy, souped up the humble Mini to make it the Mini Cooper; a race and rally car to reckon with-a sort of Clarke Kent to superman.The Mini Cooper convertible does sport four seats but there will always be a scramble for the front seats Today, Cooper Car Company that John Cooper coowned with his father Charles Cooper, has been rechristened John Cooper works, and like the Mini, is now a wholly-owned sub brand of BMW working exclusively for Mini. Hence the name Mini Cooper.Like its contemporary the Volkswagen Beetle which was the only good thing to come out of Nazi Germany, the Mini too has been rejuvenated in a new avatar. Which means, like the latest model of Volkswagen Beetle, the new Mini Cooper is a modern car that still carries the characteristic design lines that leave no room for doubt about its heritage and lineage.While the Beetle was launched in India two years ago, the Mini Cooper arrived in India this January. It was launched at the annual Auto Expo in four variants-Mini Cooper, Mini Cooper S, Mini Cooper Convertible and Mini Cooper S Countryman. The old-new look cars are priced between Rs 25 and 32 lakh.But let's face it, the Mini Cooper S is a car that you will buy more for passion than purpose and the Mini Cooper convertible even more so. While these cars do serve the purpose of being handy city runabouts that are small and easy to park as the original Mini was conceived; the new Mini Cooper has been built and designed to cater to the ardour of motoring. This is why its 1.6l engine pumps out 184 bhp at 6000 rpm and the car attacks corners with such enthusiasm that you can feel its glee radiating through the steering wheel. It feels planted on straight roads and wraps itself around corners with confidence. It is then that you realise the reason behind big bucks for a small car; simply, more bang for buck. It's a car that loves to be driven and driven hard at that.The Mini Cooper countryman can easily take on the role of a weekend tourerIn the Mini Cooper Convertible (which is more expensive than the Mini Cooper S) the exhaust burble is a beautiful accompaniment to the drive. The most expensive of the lot is the Mini Cooper S Countryman. When the Countryman was revealed to the world many purists considered it sacrilege. First of all it's more like a miniature SUV than a little runabout (read higher ride height hence more ground clearance), secondly it was the first Mini to feature four doors and also a four wheel drive (optional).While the four wheel drive option is not likely to make it to India in the first stage, the Mini Cooper S Countryman is a good option for those who lust after a Mini Cooper but can't get past having to pay so much for just two doors and essentially two seats. The Countryman will seat four in comfort and five at a squeeze. The company also claims that the boot space between the hatch and the rear seats is generous and that its rear space will give the BMW X1 a run for its money.The best bit: even with these proportions it doesn't compromise on the fun to drive characteristic. And let's not forget, you're finally in the league of legends that brag ageless sensibilities and timeless appeal. Under the hoodThe S variants feature engines that are tuned to deliver 184bhp at 6000 rpm. The standard Mini Cooper engine turns out 124 bhp at 6000rpm.The Mini Cooper S will do 0 to 100kph in 7.2sec while the Mini Cooper will do the same in 10.4. The figures would be marginally higher for the Countryman given the extra weight.Price: Mini Cooper: Rs 24.9 lakhs; Mini Cooper S: Rs. 27.9 lakh; Mini Cooper Convertible: Rs. 29.9 lakh; Mini Cooper S Countryman: Rs. 31.9 lakh (all prices are ex-showroom Delhi)advertisementadvertisementlast_img

School fire reveals serious cracks in emergency response in Grand Turk

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first_img Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 29 Jan 2016 – Fire in Grand Turk, again at a school and the sadness over the losses is palatable with the early morning blaze which destroyed the top story of the brand new Administrative Block at HJ Robinson High. Making matters worse, the strong view that a lack of Police, lack of a domestic fire unit, a break in and alleged arson all worked in unison to wipe out the Principal, Vice Principal’s and Records offices plus Computer Lab and Library – all were just recently commissioned for the 2015/2016 academic year. Among those on the scene early, was the Member for Grand Turk South and Salt Cay, Hon Edwin Astwood.“I became even more upset to learn that this fire might have been intentionally started. This will have a serious impact on the students and faculty at the school as they are suffering from some great material losses at this time. This fire has exposed much shortcomings and inefficiencies in the Government’s fire response and emergency systems. I am now calling on the Government to act without delay in addressing this matter, so as to minimize the negative effects on all…” Astwood says he has been asking for a fire department for Grand Turk for years, but he is always told this essential service is in the pipeline by the PNP Government. Community members took furniture from the school buildings, FortisTCI cherry picker trucks lifted fire fighters to cope with the blaze. Education Minister, Hon Akeirra Missick suspended school for the day, this may extend to next week. Magnetic Media this morning was informed that police had a ‘person of interest’ in custody for the suspected arson; that although the security camera was smashed, the DVR recording device was salvaged. Police give no details of the investigation, only that one is ongoing. HJ Robinson High serves 350 students. TCI Country Leaders condemn vicious memes Related Items:akierra missick, edwin astwood, Fire, fortis tci, HJ robinson high school, pnp Opposition Leader responds to Throne Speech  11 days later; says PDM Govt plan puts TCI in ‘deep doo doo’ Olive branch extended by Opposition Leader, says it is time for Turks and Caicos leaders to unite Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img