Internet Usage Statistics Continue to Climb

March 15th, 2016

How big has the Internet become? A couple of years ago, 78% of all adults were using the internet regularly, and 67% regularly visited social sites such as Facebook or Twitter. According to a new analysis released by Pew Internet, internet adoption has grown to 84% of all American adults. And while the scales have tipped into the majority (58%) of senior citizens using the internet, the proportion of young adults (ages 18-29) outpace all adoption levels of other age groups..

There are still differences in internet adoption between the classes (e.g. college-educated vs. no high school diploma) as well as racial/ethnic adoption, but those gaps have shrunk dramatically the last decade and continue to shrink with wider-spread usage.

Another indication of widespread internet adoption is that more and more universities are offering online classes and providing students with the option of using e-textbooks in digital format. There is another indication that the internet is now considered to be a main resource for answering questions.

How Many Personal Identifiers Does Your Cell Phone Carry?

September 27th, 2013

Data from over one million cell phone users has revealed that it takes very little information to personally identify each user. The study concluded that only four spatio-temporal points were needed to achieve accurate information about a user.

Basically, a spatio-temporal point is where a user is geographically located at the time they’re using their phone. And because the daily travels of each person are unique, only four of these points can be used to identify them. As well, it was discovered that the possibility of two people ending up in the same four locations during four different times of day was highly unlikely. These results definitely shed light on personal privacy and the risks that could threaten it. It’s hoped that these findings will be kept in mind when developers create future technologies and policies.


The Global Community Needs Internet Service Providers

August 23rd, 2013

The internet is vital to interacting with our global community. And ISPs are necessary if we want to get connected to this tool. This way, we can enjoy all of the advantages that the online world can offer. According to at least one study regarding internet usage, w use it to do everything, including engaging in searching for information and communicating via email and social networking. We also use the internet to get the latest news, do all sorts of business, and even get higher education. We do our banking and bill paying online as well as our shopping via Internet service providers. The internet is responsible for making this a smaller world than it ever was before.

Hackers Employed By Cities To Help The Public

August 13th, 2013

When is a hacker not really a hacker? When they’re working with cities to help make data more useful for citizens. A new way to help cities in need of cash is apparently the hiring of helpful hackers, who make use of city data that’s been stripped of any personal information, and then create apps that citizens can use in their daily lives. Chicago is one example, where an executive order mandating that all data not protected by privacy laws be made available was recently signed. This allowed hackers the ability to create all manner of apps to help citizens.

Among the types of apps that could be developed is a tool to reveal to cyclists which routes are most popular, thanks to the use of data gleaned from the city’s bike-share program. Another such app which has already been created is the 311 Service Tracker Chicago app, which allows users to track the status of requests made to the city, such as roadwork and rubbish removal. Other cities are also taking part in this newly-popular trend. New York is one, which has developed Embark, a free program that maps subway routes for riders. And in San Francisco, a free iPhone app assists with the use of public spaces with parking and other info.

Patrol Officers Wired With Cameras, Microphones

April 10th, 2013

Cameras installed on city streets, in Laundromats, and everywhere else we can think of. We’ve all read or heard at least one story of this already happening, or in the works. But what happens when police officers are wired for sound and video and watched by their headquarters? Well, the initial reaction in some detachments wasn’t pretty. Many officers questioned why they should be watched by ‘big brother’.

These days, the cameras aren’t cumbersome; many can be attached, unseen, to collars, caps and sunglasses. And the battery packs that power them can last for hours. Any recorded video gets uploaded to a central server. But what are the benefits? This is what’s currently being investigated. The experiment, running since February of 2012 will end in July of this year, but the results received are already quite interesting. There has so far been a decline in complaints filed against officers of almost ninety percent.


Facebook, Twitter and Apple Dev Site Says Not Aware Of Its Role In Hacks

February 21st, 2013

The site fingered as the culprit in the recent hacking attacks on three major companies appears shocked by the accusation. iPhoneDevSDK maintains that it was unaware of its role in the attack until it read reports about it. However, although the company maintains it had no knowledge of the breach, it appears the company is now working with Facebook to try and figure out what happened by sharing information about the breach and attacks.

According to a statement by iPhoneDEVSDK, the hackers used one administrator account to place JavaScript on the company site which then proceeded to hack into user computers. The hackers took advantage of an undocumented vulnerability in Java’s browser plug-in to hack all four companies in the same way. The fact that an undocumented vulnerability was used in the attack means that any engineer visitor to the site would have been at risk , even though the company had recently released emergency patches.

High Speed Internet Growing as News Source

September 3rd, 2011

More and more people are looking to online sources for breaking news stories. It is little wonder that this is true. One parent recently called his son to come and watch the TV because there was an important breaking news story of national concern. The son replied that he already knew what it was — Osama bin Laden had been located and killed. He had already seen videos on You Tube! It is true that online news is available instantaneously! No wonder most major newspapers have established an online presence. As users, it is simple to categorize the news we are interested in by simply bookmarking the sites we rely on for information. These sites may also reflect our personal interests — such as news, politics, business, entertainment, or sports sites.