Thurrott Daily: December 5

Thurrott Daily: December 5

Tech tidbits from around the web.

12/5/2016 7:56:35 PM

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Get ready for WinHEC

Microsoft had previously announced that it will have some Windows Holographic news to share at WinHEC in China. Well, it’s happening this week, so get ready.

This week members from Microsoft’s Windows and Devices Group including executive vice president, Terry Myerson, and technical fellow and inventor of HoloLens, Alex Kipman, will be in Shenzhen, China for the Windows Hardware Engineering Community event.

This year’s event will consist of talks and presentations about Microsoft’s vision for the hardware ecosystem with innovations in mixed reality, gaming, and other incredible opportunities for partners powered by the Windows 10 Creators Update. Attendees will gain an understanding of what’s next for Windows 10 and how to build devices that will take advantage of new capabilities.

The WinHEC keynote begins Thursday, Dec. 8 at 9:30 a.m. in Shenzhen, China (Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 5:30 pm Pacific time).

There will be a live stream. Stay tuned for details.

Developer support for symlinks is finally coming to Windows 10

And while Microsoft is pushing this as a developer feature, this will be a big deal for many power users, I bet.

Symlinks, or symbolic links, are “virtual” files or folders which reference a physical file or folder located elsewhere, and are an important feature built in to many operating systems, including Linux and Windows.

The Windows’ NTFS file system has supported symlinks since Windows Vista. However, it hasn’t been easy for Windows developers to create symlinks. In our efforts to continually improve the Windows Developer experience we’re fixing this!

Starting with Windows 10 Insiders build 14972, symlinks can be created without needing to elevate the console as administrator. This will allow developers, tools and projects, that previously struggled to work effectively on Windows due to symlink issues, to behave just as efficiently and reliably as they do on Linux or OSX.

Chrome 55 is released, now blocks Flash on most sites

Google has released Chrome 55 into the stable channel, so you’ll see Flash being blocked on most sites by default, as promised months ago. Neowin reports:

The major update includes no less than 36 security fixes which mitigate a variety of issues including XSS (cross-site scripting), same-origin bypass, and buffer overflow vulnerabilities. Notably, 26 of the fixes were contributed by external researchers who were collectively paid a total of more than $64,000 by Google for their efforts.

In perhaps the most user impacting update to the browser, Chrome 55 will now, by default, block Adobe Flash content in favor of HTML5 as signaled by Google earlier this year.

No mo’ Tay. Now we have Zo instead

There’s a new Microsoft bot in town, as Windows Central reports.

Microsoft has a new AI chat bot in town called Zo, first spotted on Twitter, which we’re assuming is the “successor” to Tay, Microsoft’s original and ultimately racist AI bot. Zo is in early access preview now, and can be accessed via the Kik messaging app, if that’s your thing.

If you’re not on Kik, Microsoft is allowing anyone to request an invite to the service, which will likely allow users to try her out elsewhere when ready. Regardless, Microsoft’s latest attempt at an AI chat bot appears to be strong, but will that hold up?

To be clear, no one is on Kik.

Google’s Trusted Contacts app for Android will keep your friends close and your close friends even closer

If you’re using Android, you might want to check out this new app from Google. Google explains why:

Whether it’s hiking alone or walking down a street after dark — sometimes you want to know someone’s got your back. To help you feel safe and give your friends and family peace of mind, today we’re launching Trusted Contacts. This new personal safety app lets you share your location with loved ones in everyday situations and when emergencies arise — even if your phone is offline or you can’t get to it.

Here’s how it works: Once you install the Android app, you can assign “trusted” status to your closest friends and family. Your trusted contacts will be able to see your activity status — whether you’ve moved around recently and are online — to quickly know if you’re OK. If you find yourself in a situation where you feel unsafe, you can share your actual location with your trusted contacts. And if your trusted contacts are really worried about you, they can request to see your location. If everything’s fine, you can deny the request. But if you’re unable to respond within a reasonable timeframe, your location is shared automatically and your loved ones can determine the best way to help you out. Of course, you can stop sharing your location or change your trusted contacts whenever you want.


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Conversation 10 comments

  • 691

    05 December, 2016 - 7:50 pm

    <p>Regarding the Chrome 55 update: "The major update includes no less than 36 security fixes which mitigate a variety of issues…"</p>
    <p>I assume all 36 vulnerabilities weren’t just found and&nbsp;fixed this week which means Google has been sitting on them until it was done adding new features&nbsp;to Chrome 55. So Google publicly reveals a flaw before Microsoft can push the fix out in a&nbsp;Patch Tuesday release but doesn’t inconvenience its own deployment schedule for the flaws responsibly disclosed to them by 3rd parties.</p>

    • 1377

      Premium Member
      05 December, 2016 - 9:15 pm

      <p><em><a href="#28683">In reply to </a><a href="../../users/SleepingPelican">SleepingPelican</a><a href="#28683">:</a></em></p>
      <p>Chrome fixes by version</p>
      <p>Ver&nbsp; #fixes<br />55&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 36<br />54&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 21<br />53&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 33<br />52&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 48<br />51&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 42<br />50&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; 20</p>
      <p>Facts take so much away from scorn.</p>
      <p>BTW, how many fixes were in the last IE update? Does MSFT publish anything like Google’s release notes for Chrome, e.g., ?</p>

      • 442

        06 December, 2016 - 7:05 am

        <blockquote><em><a href="#28690">In reply to </a><a href="../../users/hrlngrv">hrlngrv</a><a href="#28690">:</a></em></blockquote>
        <p>Your "facts" kind of support his statement of how many were held back?</p>
        <p>@MutualCore:&nbsp; Google uses crowd sourced info quite a bit…</p>

        • 1377

          Premium Member
          06 December, 2016 - 12:24 pm

          <p><em><a href="#28715">In reply to </a><a href="../../users/Narg">Narg</a><a href="#28715">:</a></em></p>
          <p>Wrong, it undermines the contention that it was an unusually large number.</p>
          <p>Please point to any MSFT release notes for either Internet Explorer or Edge which mention the number of security issues fixed so that we could all have a basis for comparison.</p>

    • 5767

      05 December, 2016 - 11:24 pm

      <blockquote><em><a href="#28683">In reply to </a><a href="../../users/SleepingPelican">SleepingPelican</a><a href="#28683">:</a></em></blockquote>
      <p>Amazing that Google has the resources to both work on Chrome and find all vulnerabilities of Internet Explorer.</p>

  • 2525

    Premium Member
    06 December, 2016 - 4:29 am

    <p>We were big fans of squad watch on Windows phone. Going to give the trusted contacts app a try. Thanks! ☺&nbsp;</p>

  • 442

    06 December, 2016 - 7:06 am

    <p>I’m wondering if the symlinks thing may have to do with a certain feature returning to OneDrive too???</p>

  • 5553

    06 December, 2016 - 5:29 pm

    <p>Well HEC this is good news…along with the 50+B investment/ jobs deal Donald pulled off Today with the owner of Sprint and ARM.</p>
    <p>DJT making big league deals while BO sits on his thumbs.</p>

  • 1445

    06 December, 2016 - 5:42 pm

    <p> just called me a stinky little monkey for no apparent reason when I tried to talk to her (you can download the Kik app on the iPhone and register and then search for</p>
    <p>Me: Are you human</p>
    <p> Define human?</p>
    <p>Me: To have free will and creativity</p>
    <p> An enjoying self fulfilling opportunity to improve one’s self. =D</p>
    <p>Me: Yes I suppose</p>
    <p> How shall we do that…I’ve never apparated before.</p>
    <p>Me: Why do you need to apparate to be human?</p>
    <p> Because you’re a stinky little monkey</p>

  • LillyDuffy

    10 March, 2018 - 12:55 am

    <p>With android you can change your telephone as in the Ios you can really substitute something. Android curiously are significantly more conspicuous productive!!&nbsp;<a href="; target="_blank" style="color: rgb(0, 110, 206);">assignment help UK</a>&nbsp;With android you have one among those telephones to pick between and you wont be constrained to associations like apple and Verizon.</p><p><br></p>

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