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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Semantic web and future of Social Networking


Hello everyone!

I am back to blogging! I was little busy doing some very interesting projects these days.

Today, I would like to share some of my recently learned facts and future possibilities of online social networking!

Do you know that according to ComScore reports social networking sites now reach 82% of world’s internet population in general? Today’s popular online networking sites have changed the way we live our life. However; most of us are juggling with managing our accounts on Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, Google Plus and Facebook!

Few years back I was very active on Orkut then it was time for Facebook! These days my favorite is Google Plus! Switching between networking sites and managing friend list for each of them is quite difficult! Moreover, when I share my pictures on one social networking site I cannot share them with friends on other social networks! Neither it is possible to request friends to join my favorite social network just because I am there!

While doing one of my recent projects I learned about Decentralized Social Networking.

Let me explain what is Decentralized Social Networking.

·  In decentralized social networking users choose a server or a node he/she trust to share his own data! As a user of decentralized social network you own your photos, music, videos and documents. You need not to worry about ownership of your own content! Recent example is when Instagram had changed their Terms of use and claimed that they can resell user images to any advertising company!

  •    Most features provided by popular social networking sites are also offered by these decentralized networking platforms.
  •    Users can import and aggregate their contacts from various social networking sites and control what information is viewed by whom!
  •    Use of semantic web technologies allows interoperability between varieties of social networks. Thus, you can have best of each social network!

  •     Decentralized social networking platforms  like Friendica, Status.net or Diaspora can help you become the master of your own content.


There is no need to log in separately to each social networking site you are part of just to view updates from friends!

In one of my previous post I had shared some thoughts on how a FacebookLIKE button clicks can collect information on variety of topics, brands, communities, deceases etc. that can either be USED or MISUSED! Large scale centralization of private data in hands of one single company is simply not beneficial for the future of social networking!

Awareness is the key! Do not give away your data without even reading EULA (End User Licence Agreement). Your photos, videos , documents can be misused.

Let me know your thoughts! 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My venture into crocheting scarves


Finally I am back to blogging with finished scarf that I had mentioned in previous post on finger less gloves .

I found this beautiful pattern on lionbrand.com. Before starting any pattern I like to check reviews and ratings of other crochet buddies. One of them on lion brand’s site mentioned that she had doubled the total number of stitches mentioned in the actual pattern to increase the length of the scarf. I did the same and doubled the length. 

I had to look at the pattern every time for first few rows only. Rest of the scarf was easy to follow. Give it a try if you love to crochet!
Free pattern for crocheted scarf

While browsing patterns I came across a name ‘Infinity Scarf’. I had never heard of anything like that! Infinity word makes me think of scientific formula and I couldn’t quickly co-relate it with crocheting. 

Here is the co-relation between the two...a scarf without ends...

As of today an infinity scarf has become my favorite crocheted accessory. I made this using tutorial here. I love to wear it as a cowl as well as long scarf!  

I had some hard times taking photographs without a mannequin.



My infinity scarf is stretchable enough to use it as a head wrap too!

Let me know your thoughts on this! Happy Crocheting! 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Disable Java to protect your computer


Few of my friends are very active in Google+. They are always fond of browsing trending topics on Google plus. On 10th of January #java was a trending on Google plus. Slowly it was flooded with messages regarding java 0 day exploit!

A Google plus post from thenextweb.com addressed the only solution suggested by The US Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) was to disable java to save your computer from possible threats.

Java is one of the most popular programming language that enables programmers to write applications that may run on any device. Billions of mobile phones and desktops run java. Java powers our set top boxes, web cams, blue-ray players, games and many more systems. A message to disable such highly used and powerful tool came as a BIG shock!

You might be thinking that “How this message can affect you?

Java is also used with internet browsers that we use every day! Java 7 update has vulnerabilities that may allow any hacker to install and run arbitrary code on your computer without your permission. Such malicious code may steal your passwords, financial information etc. All these can be done simply when you are browsing internet and visiting websites!

Actually you don’t need java all the time when browsing internet!

So, let’s see how to disable java from your Google Chrome browser. From top right corner of your Google Chrome select Settings.
disable java for Google Chrome
Figure 1.1

A screen as shown in the Figure 1.2 will be displayed. Scroll down and click on Show advanced settings.
disable java for Google Chrome
Figure 1.2

From Privacy settings choose Content settings shown in the figure 1.3
disable java for Google Chrome
Figure 1.3

Further, from Content settings -> Plug-ins -> Click on Disable individual plug-ins
disable java for Google Chrome
Figure 1.4


Finally, locate java plug-in details for your browser by scrolling down and click on Disable.

disable java for Google Chrome
Figure 1.5





Alternately you can also disable java from all your browsers using Control Panel option.
Select Control Panel -> Java


disable java from Control Panel
Figure 1.6

From Java Control Panel -> Go to Advanced tab -> Java Plug-in and uncheck
Enable the next-generation Java Plug-in.


Figure 1.7


This will disable java irrespective of browser you use to .
Though Oracle Corp. has released a fix on Monday, 14th Jan 2013 however; according to US Homeland Security update is not enough toprotect computers.Till the time Oracle corp. Fix Java security it is surely wise to disable java to protect your computer.



Thursday, January 10, 2013

Welcome 2013 !


Hi!


I know I am late by 10 days to wish you a very happy new year. I hope you are equally excited to welcome 2013 with all new dreams.

Welcome 2013

Today I would like to share a video from Robin Sharma’s blog that I truly enjoyed. I am sure it will help fill happiness as a habit! 


Wish you a happiness filled year ahead!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

5 Tips to Secure Gmail


These days Google accounts hold vital role in our day to day life. We use them to get registered at multiple websites, receive bank statements as well as to shop online. Especially Gmail is widely used in India.According to camscore reports.


Gmail usage in India
Credit : camscoredatamine.com

However, very few of us use security enhancement options offered by Gmail. Thus, we leave opportunity for hackers to invade into our personal space. 

Here are 5 points that you must consider to make your Gmail secure.

1)Enable https://

Enabling https for gmail
Figure 1.1

On internet whenever you visit a website, its server communicates with your web browser using specific set of standards called Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP).In simple language can say that it is a language used by server and your web browser to talk to each other. However, this language can be sniffed and interpreted by hackers to see what is communicated between your web browser and the server.

 HTTPS means ‘HTTP + SSL’ (Hypertext Transfer Protocol + Secure Sockets Layer). HTTPS is used to ensure website’s identity and to encrypt communication between your web browser and the server. So, no one can read what your web browser and the server is communicating, thus making your credit card numbers and passwords secured.

To change settings of your Gmail account use ‘gear like’ button on top right corner of your Gmail screen. Look for Browser connection under General settings and select Always use https option.
enable https for gmail security
Figure 1.2


2) Enable 2-way verification

Very few of us are actually using this innovative feature offered by Google. It adds another security layer to Gmail sign in process by asking you to add a verification code for every sing in attempt. You can opt to receive this verification code either through a text message, a voice call or by using Google’s authentication app

Here is setup to enable 2-way verification for Gmail.

3) Track your account activity 

Gmail lets you track your activity and keep an eye on when , where and by using which device your Gmail account was last accessed! You can view these ‘Details’ from the Bottom right corner of your Gmail screen. 

view Gmail account activity
Figure 1.3
Often check this activity log to trace any suspicious happenings with your Gmail. Figure 1.4 shows the details.

4) Logging out from other Gmail sessions

Sometimes ease of accessing Gmail using your friend’s or relative’s laptop or desktop can expose it to various security threats if we forget to sign out properly. Make sure to use Gmail’s Sign out all other sessions button from activity log.


Sign out of all Gmail sessions
Figure 1.4


5) Due to vast availability of Wi-Fi hubs in public places like airports and hotels people are usually tempted to check mails. Your laptop or tablet’s data can be compromised by packet-sniffing software when accessed through such public hotspots. So, it is wise to avoid such temptation and not to use public wi-fi hotspots.

Apart from these five points primary precautions like using proper passwords by combining alphabets and numbers must be used. I hope this effort of mine will help you enhance security of Gmail.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Fingerless gloves crochet pattern


Hi!

I have been pinning a lot of crochet patterns these days however; I end up creating very few of them :( . Pinterest addiction is dragging me into another addiction of expanding my yarn stash!

Last week I tried my hands on crocheting finger-less gloves for my kids and it turned out best ever winter gifts for them. I found a super easy and free pattern at crochetspot.com . It was really quick to work on this project. I have made these gloves especially to match with their school uniform.
Easy crochet finger-less gloves


My little one is 6 and finding it so comfy that he is not willing to take it off even after school hours. He is asking me to make another fancy pair of gloves to ware at home. 
Easy crochet pattern for finger-less gloves

For the elder one, being able to write while wearing these gloves is a major plus point!
Crochet finger-less gloves for kids

I am planning to make one lacy fingerless gloves for myself too once I finish my current crochet project scalloped scarf!

Wish you a very happy Monday!


Thursday, December 6, 2012

Remember that ‘LIKE’ button is linked to your profile!



Hi again!

If you have a Facebook account you must have found at least one of your childhood friend with whom you were not in touch for many years! Thanks to the biggest social networking site on the planet that helped you find and reconnect with old friends.

I would love to share an interesting Infographis about Facebook statistics 2012 with you. According to this India is one of the fastest growing Facebook country! 


Facebook Like button
Facebook Statistics 2012


I thought of writing a post about ‘LIKE’ button of Facebook. 

Facebook collects much more information about all of us. A single click on Facebook ‘LIKE’ button can trigger many real life consequences. Here is a list of five things that one should know about ‘LIKE’ button.

  •      How ‘LIKE’ button is used by brands and products !


Do you know...

When you click on LIKE button on any Facebook page it will be reflected on your friend’s news feed. Thus, your friends will know that you like a particular page.

Mostly, people do this just to show what brand of shoes, cloths or even soaps they have recently purchased and liked.

However,

True meaning of clicking a LIKE button on any Facebook page goes like this...

‘You are willing read and stay updated with everything that is posted on that page. Facebook Page could be about a brand, a product, a business or an interest! Thus, all those who have liked a facebook page of any particular brand end up seeing their own news feed with all the promotional updates from those brands.’

Infect, most of the times we see advertises in the right panel along with a list of our friends who have already liked a page. Thus, encouraging you to consider and like the page!

  •    LIKE’ button collects your information


There exist many Facebook pages about awareness on specific diseases or treatments. Be mindful before liking them because unknowingly you are providing data that insurance companies may use against you!

  •  ‘LIKE’ button can put you in embarrassing situations

Many a times clicking on ‘LIKE’ button can create embarrassing situations especially for those condolence messages, RIP status updates or earthquake news updates.

  • ‘LIKE’ button can catch lies!

 Don’t be surprised to discover...One of your friend who you knew as a pure vegetarian has liked a Facebook page about Chicken recipes! Or one of your relative you knew doesn't drink has liked a brand page of a best selling alcohol!

 ‘LIKE’ button can really help you find like minded people

From your profile page try to access your own ‘likes’. Facebook can help you find who else from your friend list share your interest. When I liked a page on ‘Alchemist  by Paulo Coelho’ I was thrilled to know that few of my cousins also liked it!

Facebook has become a place where  you can have your boss, clients, relatives, childhood friends, neighbours and ex-colleagues around. Someone’s good laugh can become an insult for the other one. So, be mindful before clicking that ‘LIKE’ button.