Tech News

Twitter Mimics Facebook, Heartbleed Bug In OpenSSL, Netflix 4K Streaming [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 09-04-2014

Today in Tech News Digest, Twitter becomes Facebook, Microsoft releases Windows 8.1 Update 1, OpenSSL suffers Heartbleed, IE6 declared dead, Netflix streaming in 4K, Sesame GO launches, and Rise Of The Patent Troll.


Twitter Rolling Out Facebook-Like Profiles

Twitter is rolling out a major redesign of user profiles that takes its cue from rival social networking site Facebook. The updated profiles add more information and several new features designed to make the user experience easier and more fulfilling.

We first reported that a Facebook-like redesign for Twitter Dong Addict, Twitter Redesign, Firefox Ads, Instagram Bug [Tech News Digest] Creator of Flappy Bird breaks silence, Twitter could look like Facebook, Mozilla bringing ads to Firefox, Instagram bug revealed, demand for PlayStation 4 still outstripping supply, Klout overhauls UI, and Sony unveils the Bottled Walkman. Read More was on the cards in February 2014. The testing clearly went well enough that Twitter is now confident in rolling that same redesign out to all users. If you’re using Twitter 7 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Twitter Twitter has now been with us for seven years and counting. This was seven years to the day since Jack Dorsey sent out the first tweet in 2006, at a time when the micro-blogging social... Read More the new design will reach you in the “coming weeks.

The new Twitter profiles feature a large photo and wide header image, and more information about you and your usage of the site. The biggest change sees your most-popular tweets given more exposure, and you can even pin tweets to the top of your feed.

As for why Twitter is making these changes, Wired has a plausible explanation. If true, then expect to see more adverts and more mainstream users such as your parents joining Twitter in the future. Oh joy.

Windows 8.1 Update 1 Now Available

Windows 8.1 Update 1 is now officially available to download. This is a mandatory install, as Windows 8.1 users who don’t nab Update 1 will be barred from getting future updates. A Microsoft spokesman said, “It is a required update to keep your Windows 8.1 device current. Failure to install this Update will prevent Windows Update from patching your system with any future updates starting with Updates released in May 2014.


Most users will simply download and install Windows 8.1 Update 1 via Windows Update, but those who want to download the packages themselves should visit the following pages: Windows 8.1 Update 1 for x86 and Windows 8.1 Update 1 for x64.

Heartbleed Bug Found In OpenSSL

A serious bug has been found in the OpenSSL program that the majority of websites rely on for encryption. The vulnerability, nicknamed Heartbleed, was discovered last week but has existed for more than two years. This means hackers may have already used it to obtain passwords, user IDs, and other personal information.

A full post on Heartbleed will be posted to MakeUseOf News shortly. In the meantime, some (but not all) security experts are advising ordinary Web users to change their passwords, and for Webmasters to update their sites to the latest version of OpenSSL, OpenSSL 1.0.1g, which thankfully fixes the issue.

IE6 Is Finally Dead

The news that Microsoft has ended support for Windows XP Microsoft Kills Windows XP, Hollywood Sues Megaupload, Virus Shield Scam [Tech News Digest] RIP Windows XP, Hollywood sues Megaupload, Virus Shield scam, Xbox 360 emulation, multiplayer Goat Simulator, and Mario escapes into the real world. Read More dominated the news yesterday, but it should be noted that April 8 was also the day IE6 died. Finally. The hated Internet Explorer 6 is still, inexplicably, being used by around 4 percent of computer users, but with no more updates being released this aged Web browser’s number is up. Is dancing on someone or something’s grave acceptable in this instance? We think so.


Netflix Begins Streaming In 4K

Netflix has begun streaming some of its content in 4K Ultra HD, with selected shows including House Of Cards leading the charge. To watch Netflix content in 4K you’ll need a 4K television set Should You Buy A 4K / Ultra HD Television? About a decade ago, manufacturers started to sell what's now widely known as an HDTV. But now HD is old news, so the industry has decided to push another new technology; Ultra HD, also known... Read More with the HEVC/H.265 decoding capability enabled and a generous broadband usage limit. Which is likely to apply to a tiny percentage of the people reading this.

Sesame GO: VOD For Sesame Street Fans

There are a multitude of different video on demand services to choose from Hulu Plus vs. iTunes vs. Netflix vs. Amazon Instant Video: Which Is Best? Hulu. iTunes. Netflix. Amazon Instant Video. The lifeblood of online cinema and television. The new wave of home media. The providers of endless entertainment in which pants are not necessarily required. They are the contenders... Read More , but few (if any) which offer only a handful of television shows. Sesame GO is an exception, as for $3.99 per month (U.S.-only) it offers programming from Sesame Workshop. There are worse ways of keeping your kids entertained 8 Awesome Android Apps To Keep Your Kids Entertained Read More for hours at a time.

The Rise Of The Patent Troll

And finally, patent trolls are a serious issue in this day and age, and something needs to be done about them. Kirby Ferguson, the man behind the Everything Is A Remix video series Everything Is A Remix: A Four-Part Look At Copying & Derivative Works [Stuff to Watch] Take a good look at your favourite album, movie or even the expensive smartphone in your pocket – there's a good chance they were copied, sampled and assembled from someone else's original idea. Read More , agrees, and has thrown his support behind is an effort supported by Engine, Public Knowledge, and the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation), and calling for patent reform in the United States Patent Trolls, Android 4.4.1, Satoshi Nakamoto, Real Robocop [Tech News Digest] U.S. takes on patent trolls, Android 4.4.1 arrives, opinions of Bitcoin, the real Satoshi Nakamoto, get your Gmail data, Twitter comes to dumbphones via USSD, Cal for Android, and the real-life Robocop. Read More . Adding your voice to the campaign could make all the difference.


Tech News Digest… Breaking News Into Bite-Sized Chunks.

Image Credit: Duncan Hull via Flickr

Explore more about: 4K, Internet Explorer, Netflix, Online Security, Twitter, Windows 8.

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  1. Victor G
    April 9, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    IE version anything should be dead. People still use that slow browser? I only use it when I am forced to. Like for the embedded web browser in my router. Otherwise, FF or Chrome. I don't have all day to wait for the browser to think "well, maybe he actually wants to visit that page. I guess I should load it up."

  2. Tom W
    April 9, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    I've just updated my server's openSSL version. Hopefully this vulnerability wasn't wild for too long.

    The changes that Microsoft made in IE7 meant that business-grade web applications designed for IE6 had to keep running in IE6. The organisations that were too cheap or too afraid of change to hire someone to update their applications (such as the UK Government) simply didn't update IE any further. This all happened because Microsoft refused to seriously stick to web standards until IE9.

    4K streaming is a very good thing. Those few who invested in 4K sets will now have some content to show off to their friends, and that will encourage more people to buy 4K devices, more manufacturers to produce 4K devices, and the prices to drop. This is exactly what happened to HD in the beginning.