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The Tech Deck

Posts tagged: internet

Disqus users should reset passwords

Any commenters that log directly into our Disqus commenting system are advised to change their passwords due to a security vulnerability announced by Disqus.com.

http://engineering.disqus.com/2014/04/10/heartbleed.html

PLEASE NOTE: This applies ONLY to users who use their DISQUS account to comment, NOT users who comment using their spokesman.com login credentials, as illustrated below:

The Spokesman-Review takes the security of our users very seriously, so if in doubt PLEASE reset your passwords. For more information about the vulnerability, please check my last blog post about Heartbleed.

I repeat, if in doubt, change your passwords

If you have any issues or questions about this matter, please email us at webteam@spokesman.com or you can email me directly at dang@spokesman.com.

The Aviator web browser - Google’s Chrome without the Googles

Privacy is a hot-button issue these days. Between Facebook/Twitter/Google tracking your movements across the web and the NSA implanting tracking code in your brain… (Hyperbole, yes. But until all of Snowden's NSA whistle-blower secrets have been divulged, it's best to assume that the Gov't has satellites that shoot high-powered laser beams from space and can conduct brain surgery on you while you're swimming in your backyard pool. I got that tip from my schizophrenic Aunt years ago. Should have listened to her advice.)

Anyway, let's just say that privacy is hard to come by these days. Especially on the web. That's why it warms my heart to hear about WhiteHat Security's new, and free, Aviator browser.

Here's the skinny: It's basically Google Chrome, but without the Google part. What I mean by that is Aviator is built on the same open source Chromium browser (the guts or innards of Google Chrome), but without Google's search engine (it uses DuckDuckGo, behavior tracking and advertising.

But it doesn't just do away with the Googles. By default, the Aviator browser doesn't allow any tracking code from any website, unless you specifically allow it to. It comes built-in with the fantastic Disconnect plugin (which has so much awesome in it that I've decided to write a separate post about it), blocks all third-party cookies, and it runs by default in privacy/incognito mode.

I downloaded it and took a test drive with it, and it feels exactly like Google Chrome. If you like Google Chrome, then this is probably a good option for you because it's still compatible with all of the normal Chrome plugins.

If, like me, you don't like Chrome, it's less appealing. I like my Firefox just fine, but then again, I'm a web developer. For 99% of the rest of the people, I'd probably recommend this.

Need access to federal websites?

In case you haven't heard, the Federal Government is shut down for the moment. In a completely nonsensical (from a technical perspective) act, a bunch of federal websites have been taken down and replaced with this very welcoming message:

In case you really, really needed to have access to some content from the Library of Congress or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) websites or any number of other acronymically challenged Federal Government websites, you can rest easy. The awesome chaps at archive.org have your back:

Blacked Out Government Websites Available Through Wayback Machine

They have archived quite a few of the sites, and I'm sure there's more available too. (For funsies, while you're there, you should also do an archive.org search of old spokane.net and spokesmanreview.com websites.)

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About this blog

Technology stuff, Game reviews, poorly photoshopped images and offbeat humor from the geeks who run spokesman.com and spend too much time on Imgur/Reddit.

Send your nerd stuff to dang@spokesman.com and we might write about it. Or we might poorly photoshop it and mock it mercilessly, as all good nerds are wont.

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