Black Friday and the looming Google Instant Security threat

I have previously warned that "Google Instant" may pose serious risks.   Now news from Pandalabs of some serious malicious code that could well spoil your holidays ahead.

Though mundane, this is "Must Read" material.

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Today’s Tip - Alternative Web Browsers

Published by dave at 10:55 AM under Internet | software | Daily Tips | video

If you’re looking for an Internet browser other than Internet Explorer you have options.  Firefox is a popular browser but many people complain of and experience performance issues with it.  Google’s “Chrome” browser touts security with it’s “surf in a sandbox” concept but there are privacy concerns with this browser as everything you do in the browser is transmitted to Google for analysis.  Apple’s Safari browser has a very small footprint in the PC realm… a larger base on Mac since it is the embedded native browser.  One of my current favorite browsers that you might find to be an attractive alternative is Opera’s latest browser 10.60.  It’s free, and it’s fast!  One thing about the browser to be aware of though is by default it wants to turn on Opera “Turbo” mode which optimizes the browser for slow connections… ie, 56k modem.  If you have broadband service of 3MB or greater speed you will want to disable Turbo.  Another browser I just started toying with is from Lunascape (  Has a look that is something of a hybrid between Opera and Safari.  What I like about it right up front is the ability to quickly change the rendering engine on the fly without having to dig down into preference and other settings.  If you're feeling very adventurous and a serious computer junkie, look into the Konqueror browser as well.

I encourage to explore and experiment with other offerings until you find the one that feels right for you.  In the meantime, enjoy the introductory video about Opera 10.60 and if you have questions or comments about any of the browsers mentioned (or browsers not mentioned), feel free to consult the Dr.


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Smartphone chatter

Published by dave at 4:23 PM under technology | Hardware

Windows Phone 7 home screenLots of Smartphone chatter lately.  Rumors persist Apple will have a CDMA phone that works on Verizon “soon” and in fact Apple shares climbed to their highest level ever today on word it “is a done deal” according to the Salt Lake Tribune.

Meanwhile Pocket Lint, a UK based website reporting Windows Phone 7 will be publicly launched October 11 at hugeiPhone event to take place in New York City.

Also worth noting the barrage of Smartphone's coming to market running Google’s Android platform as well. 

One thing is for certain, consumers win this coming Holiday season with all the options you will soon have! 

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Google Instant – not so fast!

Published by dave at 3:41 PM under Internet | Daily Tips | Opinion | privacy | technology

You may have seen the news today announcing new technology from Google called “Instant search”.  The blog post from Google announcing the development can be found here.

I’m always curious to see what’s behind emerging trends, especially when it’s something being pushed by Google.  So is Google Instant the greatest breakthrough in search this decade or not?

Only time will answer that question, but my initial review of the technology leaves me unmoved and more than just a little suspicious.

Google Instant certainly results in a visually appealing search experience, but at what cost to your privacy?  If the devil is in the details, here is the devil you should be aware of if you are going to use Google Instant.  From Google’s own FAQ regarding instant search:

“Please note, users on domains other than can only access Google Instant if they are signed in to a Google Account”

In other words, unless you are logged in to GMAIL, Google voice or other Google service, Instant Search will not work.  Of course if you are signed in, EVERYTHING you search for can be used to  uniquely identify the person behind the search query.  This should raise further privacy concerns from consumer watchdogs and I suspect it will in time.

For now I will take a wait and see attitude with regard to Google Instant, but I will also refrain from using it until more facts are known.

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