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Found 23 results

  1. The Case Against Google

    Critics say the search giant is squelching competition before it begins. Should the government step in? Shivaun Moeran and Adam Raff met, married and started a company — thereby sparking a chain of events that might, ultimately, take down this age of internet giants as we know it — because they were both huge nerds. In the late 1980s, Adam was studying programming at the University of Edinburgh, while Shivaun was focused on physics and computer science at King’s College London. They had mutual friends who kept insisting they were perfect for each other. So one weekend, they went on a date and discovered other similarities: They both loved stand-up comedy. Each had a science-minded father. They shared a weakness for puns. In the years that followed, those overlapping enthusiasms led to cohabitation, a raucous wedding and parallel careers at big technology firms. The thing is, though, when you’re young and geeky and fall in love with someone else young and geeky, all your nerdy friends want you to set them up on dates as well. So Adam and Shivaun, who took Adam’s last name after marriage, approached the problem like two good programmers: They designed a dating app. The app was known as MatchMate, and the idea was simple: Rather than just pairing people with similar interests, their software would put together potential mates according to an array of parameters, such as which pub they were currently standing in, and whether they had friends in common, and what movies they liked or candidates they voted for, and dozens of other factors that might be important in finding a life partner (or at least a tonight partner). The magic of MatchMate was that it could allow a user to mix variables and search for pairings within a specific group, a trick that computer scientists call parameterization. “It was like asking your best friend to set you up,” Shivaun told me. “Someone who says, ‘Well, you probably think you’d like this guy because he’s handsome, but actually you’d like this other guy because he’s not as good-looking, but he’s really funny.’ ” Within computer science, this kind of algorithmic alchemy is sometimes known as vertical search, and it’s notoriously hard to master. Even Google, with its thousands of Ph.D.s, gets spooked by vertical-search problems. “Google’s built around horizontal search, which means if you type in ‘What’s the population of Myanmar,’ then Google finds websites that include the words ‘Myanmar’ and ‘population,’ and figures out which ones are most likely to answer your question,” says Neha Narula, who was a software engineer at Google before joining the M.I.T. Media Lab. You don’t really care if Google sends you to Wikipedia or a news article or some other site, as long as its results are accurate and trustworthy. But, Narula says, “when you start asking questions with only one correct answer, like, Which site has the cheapest vacuum cleaner? — that’s much, much harder.” For search engines like Google, finding that one correct answer becomes particularly difficult when people have numerous parameters they want satisfied: Which vacuum cleaner is cheapest but also energy-efficient and good on thick carpets and won’t scare the dog? To balance those competing preferences, you need a great vertical-search engine, which was something Adam and Shivaun had thought a lot about. Soon the Raffs began daydreaming about turning their idea into a moneymaker. They didn’t have the funds to compete with huge dating sites like Match.com, so they applied for a couple of patents and began brainstorming. They believed that their vertical-search technology was good — better, in fact, than almost anything they had seen online. Best of all, it was built to work well on almost any kind of data set. With just a bit of tinkering, it could search for cheap airline tickets, or great apartments, or high-paying jobs. It could handle questions with hard-to-compare variables, like what’s the cheapest flight between London and Las Vegas if I’m trying to choose between business class or leaving after 3 p.m.? As far as they could tell, their search technology performed better on such problems than Google did, which Adam discovered when he tried to buy an iPod online. “I spent half an hour searching Google for the lowest price, and it drove me completely mad,” he told me. It was impossible for him to figure out which sites were selling iPods and which were selling accessories, like headphones or charging cords. Or Google would show Adam one price, but then the actual price was completely different. Or there was an extra charge for shipping. It seemed to Adam his technology would do a much better job. [...] Please, if interested, read this rather long, yet worth-your-time, article < here > Thank you.
  2. View Image is a browser extension for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox that adds a "view image" button to Google Images so that users can click on it to display the image directly in the browser. Google removed the view image button from its image search engine Google Images recently after the company came to an agreement with Getty Images. The button loads the image that is displayed directly. This gives users options to look at it more closely and to download it to the local device that they use. While it is still possible to to do after the removal of the button on Google Images -- users can still right-click on the image and select "open image in new tab" or a similar option -- view image made the whole process easier and many Internet users probably don't know that they can open the image through the context menu. We suggest that you use a different image search engine such as Startpage instead. You can view images directly on Startpage and images do get opened through a proxy so that your IP address is not revealed to the site hosting the image. View Image extension View Image is a new browser extension for Firefox and Chrome that adds the button to Google Images again. The extension should work in compatible browsers such as Opera or Vivaldi as well, and the functionality of it is identical. Closing Words Google users who used "view images" in the past regularly to load images in a standalone tab may use the View Image browser extension to restore the functionality. Most users don't need it probably though as it is still possible to right-click on images to load them individually. The extension does require access to your browsing data on all Google sites and the code is available on GitHub. Ghacks.net
  3. Want to work for Google?

    CEO touts 'jobs for thousands' in $2.5bn US expansion plan Google talks up job creation as part of its plans to extend its US datacenter operations. Amazon and Apple aren't the only tech giants drumming up news about creating jobs in the US. Google CEO Sundar Pichai says his company's $2.5bn datacenter expansion across the US will create thousands of jobs in engineering, operations and sales. Google will be expanding its offices and datacenters in 14 states across the US, Pichai said in a blogpost detailing a groundbreaking event for a new datacenter in Clarksville/Montgomery County in Tennessee. Google announced plans in 2015 to build the Tennessee datacenter in a former semiconductor manufacturing facility. The $2.5bn will go on opening or expanding datacenters in Alabama, Oregon, Tennessee, Virginia and Oklahoma. The search and advertising giant is also opening or expanding offices in California, Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas and Washington. "In these locations, there will be jobs for thousands of people in a variety of roles -- engineering, operations, sales and more," wrote Pichai. The expansion will mean Google has operations across 21 states, consisting of six datacenter campuses, which employ about 1,900 people, and 17 offices. Google planned for the Tennessee facility to be powered by renewable energy and an existing on-site power substation. At the time the estimated investment was $500m. The company also announced a $300,000 Google.org grant to Goodwill of Middle Tennessee for adding new digital skills training to its workforce-development program. The scheme includes new local scholarships for Google's IT Support Professional Certificate. Apple in January announced plans to create more than 20,000 jobs and invest $350bn over the next five years. The iPhone maker will spend $10bn on new datacenters. Amazon also expects to create 50,000 jobs at one the 20 US sites it has shortlisted for its second headquarters. < Here >
  4. Google's got a new chatbot that can fool your friends into thinking it's you Keeping up with the frantic pace of online chat can be stressful, but Google is testing a new tool called Reply that will take the hassle out of keeping up. Reply will work with popular apps including Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Twitter and Slack, interpreting what your friends are saying and suggesting replies based on your usual conversation style. Reply will also incorporate other information you've handed over to Google, such as your location and daily schedule, to give automated replies an extra twist of authenticity. Speak for yourself If you use the Gmail mobile app you'll be familiar with Smart Replies – the short suggested responses that sometimes appear when you read a message. For example, if someone asks you if you're going to the cinema later, the app might offer the options 'Yes, I'm coming', 'No, I'm not', and 'Yes, see you there'. If you tap one, the app will open a reply window with the text already completed, ready to be edited or sent. As the name suggests, Smart Replies are adapted over time to reflect the way you write. According to an email sent to testers and published by by Android Police, Reply will go a step further, pulling in appointments from your calendar and even adapting responses based on where you are. "When you’re driving, Reply can silence your phone and tell people who message you that you can’t chat right now," says the email from Google's testbed for experimental tools, Area 120. The app will also give you a kick if you're running late: "When you get an urgent message like 'We’re waiting for you!' Reply can make sure to get your attention even when your phone is silent." Smart Replies have to be confirmed before they're sent, but according to Area 120's testing email, Reply responses will be "literally one click away". If you're the hands-off type, you might be able to subcontract a sizeable chunk of your social life – and if it works as well as advertised, your loved ones won't even know. SOURCE
  5. Google Fuchsia Release Date, News And Rumors. The future of Google’s Android-Chrome hybrid OS In early October 2017, we expected Google to reveal a new operating system that has been rumored and reported for almost two years: ‘Google Andromeda,’ a merging of its Android and Chrome operating systems (OS) in a way we've never before seen. Sadly, that didn’t happen, and today we know that project as ‘Google Fuchsia,’ which is very much still in the works – and publicly. Fuchsia is expected to become Google’s singular platform for laptops, phones and tablets running its software. Whether its running the full-fat version of Google Docs, fully leveraging Google Drive or finding your favorite app from the Google Play Store, you’ll be able to do it all from any Google Fuchsia-powered device. What’s more, you’ll be able to pick up from exactly where you left off on each app easily from any other Fuchsia device. For as excited as we are about Fuchsia, even with running early versions and the like, we’re still in the early days of Fuchsia – likely a year out from seeing Google laptops and phones alike run on this OS. That’s plenty of time to gather all the latest info and speculate! So, join us as we explore what Fuchsia is, what its capabilities are and how it might affect both Chrome OS and Android – and Google’s rivals – whenever it releases. Cut to the chase What is it? An Android-meets-Chrome, multi-device operating system When is it out? An early form is available on Chromebook Pixel now What will it cost? Likely nothing, as is with Android and Chrome A Google Pixelbook running an early version of Fuchsia OS (Image Credit: Ars Technica) What is Google Fuchsia? Again, Google Fuchsia is a hybrid OS that is still very much in development. The entirety of Fuchsia OS is comprised of two distinct but connected user interfaces (UI): a phone-centric one codenamed ‘Armadillo’ and a traditional desktop UI known as ‘Capybara’ internally, according to 9to5Google. So far, more is known about the mobile version of Fuchsia than the laptop one, but ArsTechnica was recently able to get Fuchsia running on a Google Pixelbook in an awfully early state. This approach to OS design is very similar to Microsoft’s, in which Windows 10 exists within PCs, phones, tablets and game consoles with very specific interfaces tailored to those devices. However, all of those different interfaces are built upon the same root code, known as a kernel, allowing them to run the same apps. In the case of Fuchsia, that kernel is known as ‘Zircon’, 9to5Google reports, and it’s designed to be consistently upgradeable and safe from applications accessing it constantly, adding an extra layer of security and eliminating situations in which apps are rendered incompatible with OS updates. Whether it’s in the mobile or desktop orientation, Fuchsia is laden with Google’s Material design found all over its Android and Chrome OS products. Shadows are a big focus on the design aesthetic, using a new renderer known as ‘Escher’ to do the job. The result is an interface with more depth to its look than traditionally flat OS products. Google Fuchsia as it appears on a smartphone device. Fuchsia is also heavily focused on a cards-based interface, in which every app you open appears inside one of these cards – plus, you can place multiple apps into a single card. This orients the user around tasks at hand rather than apps. From there, the OS revolves quite a bit around Google Assistant more deeply accessing your apps and information to provide even more thorough actions and insights. Google has referred to these apps and pieces of information as ‘entities’, according to a GitHub developer page, and on Fuchsia they’re all accessible by Google Assistant. Finally, Fuchsia wants to be the best cross-device OS to date. To achieve this, Fuchsia uses a new tool known as ‘Ledger’ by the GitHub community. Ledger, once you’re signed into a Google Account on a Fuchsia device, will automatically save your place in all installed apps across all Fuchsia devices. All in all, Fuchsia is Google’s attempt to get the best of Chrome and Android into a single operating system that’s more efficient both while you’re using it and when you’re away – not to mention in between those states or between devices. Google Fuchsia Release Date Since August 2016, the Google Fuchsia release date has been rumored several times – only to turn out untrue. These rumors have generally cropped up before Google’s big Google IO developer event in California or, in the case of last October, when we know a big hardware release is imminent. Sadly, the latest treasure trove of Google Fuchsia information from ArsTechnica’s hands-on time with the OS doesn’t contain any hints toward a possible release date. However, the outlet does go out of its way to note just how early in development the OS looks and feels. This should help frame our expectations for when we should expect to see Fuchsia on shelf-ready devices: most likely not before 2019. That doesn’t mean that we won’t see the OS at all in 2018, as Google could choose to preview it somehow this year in preparation for a wider release next year. At any rate, keep it locked to this page as we draw closer to a possible release date and therefore might have some new information for you. What could Fuchsia mean for Android and Chrome – and Windows and macOS? From what we're hearing, Fuchsia seems to be Google's response to Microsoft and Apple's united platforms with one of its own. In turning Android into one of the two biggest smartphone platforms and later popularizing Chrome OS – and its extensible web-based productivity programs – in the classroom and workplace, Google itself has become a major player on all platforms. Again, from the sound of it, Fuchsia is going to accomplish much of what Microsoft and Apple already have in Windows 10 and iOS-to-macOS Sierra Continuity, respectively, but in a very Google way. It's easy to expect access to Google's inimitable search and data-tracking at your fingertips – Google Assistant and ‘entities’, anyone? – which it would tout as better than Microsoft and Apple's, and an interface that changes based on the device from which it's accessed. Will this eventually mean the end of Android and Chrome? In name, most likely, but their principles will almost certainly live on – there's too much solid foundation not to build on top of them. Just look at the Material design language found throughout these early builds of either version of Fuchsia. The end result, likely to be seen in a preview form later this year and in purchasable devices in 2019, will be just one platform for Google to worry about. With Fuchsia, Google will be able to push new updates and features to all versions at once, simplifying support as well as user understanding. With that, Google will become that much more formidable a foe to Microsoft and Apple, and that much appealing an option to Android and Chromebook users all over. Who knows, perhaps it will be enough to bring people over from the other side of Microsoft and Apple’s fences. SOURCE
  6. Nest Labs will no longer develop smart home products as a mere subsidiary of Alphabet. It's joining Google, which intends to integrate its technology into Nest products. "The goal is to supercharge Nest's mission," Google said in a Wednesday blog post. Both Alphabet subsidiaries have already been integrating their hardware and software products together. But moving forward, Google's AI and voice assistant technology will be "at the core" of new products developed under the Nest line. The decision also gives some clarity to Nest, which is best known for its smart thermostats. In 2014, Google shelled out $3.2 billion to buy the company in a move that should've also supercharged the smart appliance maker. But the deal has struggled to pay off. One problem is that Nest and Google overlap in the smart home space as subsidiaries under Alphabet. For instance, the two were reportedly developing a software product with similar functions and the same name, Weave. In 2016, Nest also faced negative press for failing to introduce new products. In that same year, the company's original CEO Tony Fadell left. Since then, Nest has developed some new tech, including a smart doorbell that's slated to ship in March. On Wednesday, Google revealed that Nest sold more devices in 2017 than the previous two years combined. However, in an interview with CNET, Nest's current CEO Marwan Fawaz said it had shipped 11 million products to date — not exactly an incredible amount, given that its smart thermostat first went on sale in 2011. The two companies are coming together as they face stiff competition from Amazon and Apple in the smart home market. Google has been responding by selling its smart speakers under the Google Home line. The company sold "tens of millions" of them last year. Article
  7. Google has released Chrome 64 for Windows, Mac, and Linux, bringing a stronger pop-up blocker, over 50 security fixes, and more mitigations for the Spectre attack. As Google promised last year, Chrome 64 introduces a stronger pop-up block to protect against sneaky tactics that lead users to unwanted content through redirects. The abusive experiences that the blocker targets are practices often used by shadier sections of the web, including ads or parts of a page that create bogus site warnings and error messages, 'close' buttons that that do something other than close a page element, and play buttons that open third-party sites offering to download an app. Google is also offering feedback to site owners through the Abusive Experiences Report in Google Search Console. The report indicates if their site has displayed any of the abusive behavior and offers advice to improve the experience for users. Site owners will soon need to contend with the Ad Experience Report too, which is part of the new ad-blocking system Google is bringing to Chrome. Google revealed in December that from February 15 Chrome will remove ads that don't comply with standards overseen by the Coalition for Better Ads. "Starting on February 15, in line with the Coalition's guidelines, Chrome will remove all ads from sites that have a 'failing' status in the Ad Experience Report for more than 30 days," Google said. The stable Chrome 65 release is scheduled for March 6, so Google will be activating the ad-blocking system in Chrome 64. The Coalition for Better Ads this month kicked off the Better Ads Experience Program, which certifies that publishers agree to its standards. Sites that violate the standards are included in the Ad Experience Report, where site owners can submit their site for a reassessment after fixing the offending ads. Chrome 64 also contains 53 security fixes, among them 24 bugs reported by third-party researchers. So far, Google has paid out $22,000 to researchers for the bugs, including a $2,000 bounty to GCHQ's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) for a medium-severity WebAssembly flaw. Finally, Chrome 64 brings some of Google's fixes for the Spectre attack that can be used against browsers. Google in January advised customers they could use Chrome's optional site-isolation feature to mitigate the attack, and flagged additional mitigations in Chrome 64 via the browser's V8 JavaScript engine. It has detailed some of these changes. The company will be adding more mitigations in future. Article
  8. Google is rolling out a new feature for Android Oreo 8.1 that tells users how fast or slow a network is before connecting to it, helping to avoid spending time joining a network that might have a strong signal but turns out to be so slow that using mobile data would have been better. The new speed labels appear next to the Wi-Fi strength symbol and break down network speeds into Slow, OK, Fast, and Very Fast. Slow indicates the network is good enough to make calls and send texts. OK is suitable for reading a site, social media, and music streaming, while Fast signals it's good for most video. Very Fast means you can stream video in high quality. A community manager for the Pixel user forums clarified that each label reflects a speed range for the network and only works on open Wi-Fi networks, meaning it won't provide speed labels for networks that need a password to join. Users can turn off the feature in Settings if they don't want to see Google's speed labels. While the labels are only a general indicator of speeds that can be expected, the extra information could come in handy when picking a network from a list that previously only indicated Wi-Fi strength. The feature was announced in December with Android 8.1 but has only rolled out now after some testing. Google says the new Android 8.1 Wi-Fi feature is rolling out now. http://www.zdnet.com/article/android-8-1-tells-you-how-slow-or-fast-wi-fi-networks-are-before-connecting-to-them/
  9. Google Arts & Culture App was recently introduced and its numbers of downloads on iTunes has left YouTube and Instagram behind – At the same time, there are some privacy concerns which Google has addressed. Recently, Google introduced a new app based on the idea that it will find exact matches of users’ selfies to famous work of art. Users were allowed to share the results on social media. Through its find-your-art-lookalike feature, which rolled out in mid-December, the app provided completely absurd or somewhat spot-on results. The portraits are taken from over 1,200 museums located in more than 70 different countries and then matched against users’ selfies; being experimental people even tested the pictures of their pets, celebs and President Donald Trump. Naturally, within no time the app, titled Google Arts & Culture app, garnered the interest of users across the world and it claimed the top slot on iTunes app store leaving behind Facebook Messenger, Instagram and even YouTube. However, as soon as the popularity of this app skyrocketed, concerns started pouring in regarding the requirement of users’ selfies because it required the provision of facial information to Google. In her tweet, Alyssa Milano mentioned this point of concern: “I mean, this google app that matches your face to a piece of fine art. Anyone suspicious of just surrendering your facial recognition to google or are we confident they already have that at this point?” Basically, Google Selfie app performs matching of faces with art pieces through machine learning technology with which it recognizes the face in a selfie as well as the angle of the head and then compares it to a treasure trove of fine art. Security experts speculated that Google was using these selfies to train machine learning programs by building a database of faces. However, Google denied that it was creating a database to train machine learning programs or for any other purpose. The app also displays a prompt explaining that the company will “only store your photo for the time it takes to search for matches.” According to a company spokesperson Patrick Lenihan: “Google is not using these selfies for anything other than art matches.” The way this app function makes it quite difficult if not impossible to use these selfies for another purpose than matching them with fine art. When we download this app, a dialog box appears stating that: “Google won’t use data from your photo for any other purpose [but only to] find artworks that look like you.” Despite Privacy Concerns Google Selfie App Isn’t Capable of Misusing Facial Information Apart from these company claims, let’s not forget that computers recognize patterns through assessing a specific data set and then making guesses about the right pattern and to improvise this technique it requires feedback. Such as, if shown 500 images of apples, it can only recognize that one of these images is brand new if it is told that the guessing pattern it is following is correct. If this feedback is not provided, it will change the guesses in no specific direction and the performance will deteriorate. Considering this scenario, since the selfie matching app doesn’t have a built-in feedback loop, therefore, it can derive it on its own and there will be risk involved since people will be sharing terrible matches. So, we can say that this app has been created purely for the sake of entertainment. Nonetheless, apps like the Arts & Culture show us how tech firms are trying to integrate facial recognition technology in all programs. Google already is using it in Photos service while in September, Apple introduced Face ID with its newest product the iPhone X. Hence, it is about time we start considering the security aspect of the provision of facial recognition data at such an extensive level. You can download Google Arts & Culture app on Play Store by following this link and for iOS click here. source
  10. Google Chrome Software Removal Tool is an easy-to-use program which tries to get a broken Chrome installation working again.Launch it and the tool scans your PC for programs which Google considers "suspicious" or "known to cause problems with Chrome", and offers to remove them. Bizarrely, the CSRT won't give you the names of these suspicious programs, so you'll have to trust it. Or you can just run the program to see if it thinks there are any, then click "Cancel" instead of "Remove" when the report appears. Whatever you do, once the scan is complete, CSRT launches Chrome with the chrome://settings/resetProfileSettings command, prompting you to reset your Chrome settings. Click "Reset" and Chrome will be reset to its default settings, otherwise just close the window to continue as usual. There are no other settings or options, nothing else to do at all. Google provides few details of what the Chrome Software Removal Tool actually does. They do claim. Find programs and components that affect Chrome If you notice changes in the settings of your Chrome browser, there is a small utility that can help you identify the issue and correct it. Created by Google itself, it goes by the name of Chrome Cleanup Tool (Google Chrome Software Removal Tool), enabling you to detect programs that interfere with Google Chrome and remove them. Since toolbars, browser add-ons and pop-up ads are not typical malware, your antivirus solution might fail to detect their presence. Chrome Cleanup Tool is specifically designed to find programs and components whose installation resulted in modifications of Chrome's settings, providing you with a simple means to reset them. Remove interfering components with a click The application does not require installation and starts looking for suspicious programs as soon as you launch it. The number of findings are displayed within a small window, along with an option to remove them all, but their names are not revealed, so as to prevent name modifications that might cause Chrome Cleanup Tool not to work as it should. In some cases, a system reboot might be required in order for the changes to take effect. Once the issue is fixed, Chrome restarts and prompts you to reset the browser settings. Scan for malicious programs that cause issues with Chrome Chrome Cleanup Tool is an attempt to enhance the browsing experience of Chrome users, providing them with a simple method to factory reset the settings and remove programs that cause trouble to the browser. More aggressive malware might be impossible to remove or detect, so you might need a reputable antivirus solution to clean the system. Note that this application is not designed to search for all types of viruses and malware components, but only those that cause issues with Google Chrome. Homepage Download: Link 1 Link 2
  11. Google has been one of the most vocal companies lately when it comes to security flaws in Microsoft products, with members of its security team disclosing vulnerabilities in a series of Windows-related programs, including Edge browser. And now here’s Microsoft finding a security flaw in Google Chrome and posting an analysis of a remote code execution exploit trying to emphasize how secure its Edge browser actually is. Discovered by Microsoft’s Offensive Security Research (OSR) team, the vulnerability is documented as CVE-2017-5121 and could allow attackers to access online services that are being used by the victim, including email, documents, online banking, while also exposing saved credentials. Microsoft criticized the way Google handles security in its browser, pointing out that “Chrome’s relative lack of RCE mitigations means the path from memory corruption bug to exploit can be a short one.” To discover the vulnerability, Microsoft turned to a method called fuzzing and often used by Google engineers to look for security flaws in Microsoft’s own products. “Microsoft Edge the more secure option” Google awarded Microsoft’s security team with a bounty of $15,837 for this security flaw and other bugs that weren’t disclosed, and the company also matched the payment and issued a $30,000 donation for the Denise Louie Education Center. Of course, Microsoft couldn’t miss the occasion to praise its Edge browser, explaining that its significantly different approach makes the Windows 10 default substantially more secure and harder to compromise, even when vulnerabilities are discovered. “Neither of those techniques would be directly applicable to Microsoft Edge, which features both CFG and ACG. ACG, which was introduced in Windows 10 Creators Update, enforces strict Data Execution Prevention (DEP) and moves the JIT compiler to an external process. This creates a strong guarantee that attackers cannot overwrite executable code without first somehow compromising the JIT process, which would require the discovery and exploitation of additional vulnerabilities,” Microsoft explained pointing to its mitigation tech bundled into Windows 10. < Here >
  12. Google Chrome Software Removal Tool is an easy-to-use program which tries to get a broken Chrome installation working again.Launch it and the tool scans your PC for programs which Google considers "suspicious" or "known to cause problems with Chrome", and offers to remove them. Bizarrely, the CSRT won't give you the names of these suspicious programs, so you'll have to trust it. Or you can just run the program to see if it thinks there are any, then click "Cancel" instead of "Remove" when the report appears. Whatever you do, once the scan is complete, CSRT launches Chrome with the chrome://settings/resetProfileSettings command, prompting you to reset your Chrome settings. Click "Reset" and Chrome will be reset to its default settings, otherwise just close the window to continue as usual. There are no other settings or options, nothing else to do at all. Google provides few details of what the Chrome Software Removal Tool actually does. They do claim. Find programs and components that affect Chrome If you notice changes in the settings of your Chrome browser, there is a small utility that can help you identify the issue and correct it. Created by Google itself, it goes by the name of Chrome Cleanup Tool (Google Chrome Software Removal Tool), enabling you to detect programs that interfere with Google Chrome and remove them. Since toolbars, browser add-ons and pop-up ads are not typical malware, your antivirus solution might fail to detect their presence. Chrome Cleanup Tool is specifically designed to find programs and components whose installation resulted in modifications of Chrome's settings, providing you with a simple means to reset them. Remove interfering components with a click The application does not require installation and starts looking for suspicious programs as soon as you launch it. The number of findings are displayed within a small window, along with an option to remove them all, but their names are not revealed, so as to prevent name modifications that might cause Chrome Cleanup Tool not to work as it should. In some cases, a system reboot might be required in order for the changes to take effect. Once the issue is fixed, Chrome restarts and prompts you to reset the browser settings. Scan for malicious programs that cause issues with Chrome Chrome Cleanup Tool is an attempt to enhance the browsing experience of Chrome users, providing them with a simple method to factory reset the settings and remove programs that cause trouble to the browser. More aggressive malware might be impossible to remove or detect, so you might need a reputable antivirus solution to clean the system. Note that this application is not designed to search for all types of viruses and malware components, but only those that cause issues with Google Chrome. Homepage Download: Link 1 Link 2
  13. Google rolls out a host of features to boost the appeal of Play Store app subscriptions. Google is now doing more to promote Android Instant apps, which allow users to use the key features of an app without actually installing it. Instant Apps allow developers to distribute their Android apps from a link shared via a message, search or social media, offering a halfway point between native apps and the mobile web. The New York Times Crossword puzzle Instant App, for example, lets users play a part of the app called the daily mini crossword puzzle. This serves as an onramp to gaining new subscribers. It claims to have more than doubled the number of sessions since supporting Instant Apps, boosting its chances of converting users into subscribers. Google lists a handful of apps that support Instant Apps, including Skyscanner, NYTimes crossword puzzle, Buzfeed, Onefootball, Red Bull TV, and the UN's ShareTheMeal app. These apps now also have a "Try it Now" button on their store listings to let Android users know the feature is available. It's still early days for Instant Apps, which Google unveiled at last year's I/O and set live in a pilot this January. Google has also announced a big change to the cut it takes from app subscriptions through the Play Store, halving the fee from 30 percent to 15 percent once a developer has retained the subscriber for longer than 12 months. The new fee structure will commence on January 1, 2018, and matches the offer Apple revealed last year in an interview with The Verge. The change offered an incentive for developers to move from one-off purchases to a subscription model, as well as lessening the motivation for existing subscription-based apps, such as Spotify, to sign up users outside of the app store. Google is also enabling a few more subscription focused features for developers, including shorter free trials of at least three days that Google ensures are limited to one trial per user. It's also offering to notify developers when a user cancels a subscription, and the ability to block access to a service until a payment renewal issue is resolved. The company may also do more to clean up poorly performing apps in the Play Store with a new "minimum functionality" policy that bans apps that "crash, force close, freeze, or otherwise function abnormally" on the majority of Android devices. Source: http://www.zdnet.com/article/android-apps-now-google-will-let-you-try-before-you-install/
  14. Google Chrome engineers are considering adding a special browser permission that will thwart the rising trend of in-browser cryptocurrency miners. Discussions on the topic of in-browser miners have been going on the Chromium project's bug tracker since mid-September when Coinhive, the first such service, launched. A permission to block JS code that ramps up CPU usage To Bleeping Computer's knowledge, there have been at least two complaints (bug reports) from concerned Chrome users that did not like having their resources hijacked by in-browser miners. "Here's my current thinking," Ojan Vafai, a Chrome engineering working on the Chromium project, wrote in one of the recent bug reports. If a site is using more than XX% CPU for more than YY seconds, then we put the page into "battery saver mode" where we aggressively throttle tasks and show a toast [notification popup] allowing the user to opt-out of battery saver mode. When a battery saver mode tab is backgrounded, we stop running tasks entirely. I think we'll want measurement to figure out what values to use for XX and YY, but we can start with really egregious things like 100% and 60 seconds. I'm effectively suggesting we add a permission here, but it would have unusual triggering conditions [...]. It only triggers when the page is doing a likely bad thing. Discussions on this bug report are still ongoing, and Vafai's suggestion has not been formally approved, even if another engineer thought it a good idea. Google can't block in-browser miners via a blacklist The potential of having a browser permission to block JavaScript tasks that cause high-usage CPU operations for extended periods is a step forward. In another bug report filed in mid-September, Google engineers shut down the idea of blocking a miner's JavaScript code at the browser level via a blacklist as being impractical. "We cannot, realistically, fingerprint and block this pattern of computation," said Adam Langley, a Chrome engineering working on the Chromium project. "[W]eb sites will be able to outrun us by mutating the code. Blocking the loading of these scripts is thus something for extensions." For now, Chrome users can block in-browser miners via extensions like AntiMiner, No Coin, and minerBlock. Some ad blockers and antivirus products can also block some of these miners. Source
  15. Today, Mozilla is announcing a plan that grows collaboration with Microsoft, Google, and other industry leaders on MDN Web Docs. The goal is to consolidate information about web development for multiple browsers – not just Firefox. To support this collaboration, we’re forming a Product Advisory Board that will formalize existing relationships and guide our progress in the years to come. Why are we doing this? To make web development just a little easier. “One common thread we hear from web developers is that documentation on how to build for the cross-browser web is too fragmented,” said Daniel Appelquist, Director of Developer Advocacy at Samsung Internet and Co-Chair of W3C’s Technical Architecture Group. “I’m excited to be part of the efforts being made with MDN Web Docs to address this issue and to bring better and more comprehensive documentation to developers worldwide.” More than six million web developers and designers currently visit MDN Web Docs each month – and readership is growing at a spectacular rate of 40 percent, year over year. Popular content includes articles and tutorials on JavaScript, CSS and HTML, as well as detailed, comprehensive documentation of new technologies like Web APIs. Community contributions are at the core of MDN’s success. Thousands of volunteers have helped build and refine MDN over the past 12 years. In this year alone, 8,021 users made 76,203 edits, greatly increasing the scope and quality of the content. Cross-browser documentation contributions include input from writers at Google and Microsoft; Microsoft writers have made more than 5,000 edits so far in 2017. This cross-browser collaboration adds valuable content on browser compatibility and new features of the web platform. Going forward, Microsoft writers will focus their Web API documentation efforts on MDN and will redirect relevant pages from Microsoft Developer Network to MDN. A Broader Focus Now, the new Product Advisory Board for MDN is creating a more formal way to absorb all that’s going on across browsers and standards groups. Initial board members include representatives from Microsoft, Google, Samsung, and the W3C, with additional members possible in the future. By strengthening our relationships with experts across the industry, the Product Advisory Board will ensure MDN documentation stays relevant, is browser-agnostic, and helps developers keep up with the most important aspects of the web platform. “The reach of the web across devices and platforms is what makes it unique, and Microsoft is committed to helping it continue to thrive,” said Jason Weber, Partner Director of Program Management, Microsoft Edge. “We’re thrilled to team up with Mozilla, Google, and Samsung to create a single, great web standards documentation set on MDN for web developers everywhere.” Mozilla’s vision for the MDN Product Advisory Board is to build collaboration that helps the MDN community, collectively, maintain MDN as the most comprehensive, complete, and trusted reference documenting the most important aspects of modern browsers and web standards. The board’s charter is to provide advice and feedback on MDN content strategy, strategic direction, and platform/site features. Mozilla remains committed to MDN as an open source reference for web developers, and Mozilla’s team of technical writers will continue to work on MDN and collaborate with volunteers and corporate contributors. “Google is committed to building a better web for both users and developers,” said Meggin Kearney, Lead Technical Writer, Web Developer Relations at Google. “We’re excited to work with Mozilla, Microsoft, and Samsung to help guide MDN towards becoming the best source of up-to-date, comprehensive documentation for developers on the web.” MDN directly supports Mozilla’s overarching mission. We strive to ensure the Internet is a global public resource that is open and accessible to all. We believe that our award-winning documentation helps web developers build better web experiences – which also adhere to established standards and work across platforms and devices. MDN Board Members Ali Spivak, Chair, Mozilla Daniel Appelquist, Samsung Internet Dominique Hazael-Massieux, W3C Meggin Kearney, Google Patrick Kettner, Microsoft Christopher Mills, Mozilla Erika Doyle Navara, Microsoft Robert Nyman, Google Kadir Topal, Mozilla Source Alternate Source - BleepingComputer
  16. Google Chrome Software Removal Tool is an easy-to-use program which tries to get a broken Chrome installation working again.Launch it and the tool scans your PC for programs which Google considers "suspicious" or "known to cause problems with Chrome", and offers to remove them. Bizarrely, the CSRT won't give you the names of these suspicious programs, so you'll have to trust it. Or you can just run the program to see if it thinks there are any, then click "Cancel" instead of "Remove" when the report appears. Whatever you do, once the scan is complete, CSRT launches Chrome with the chrome://settings/resetProfileSettings command, prompting you to reset your Chrome settings. Click "Reset" and Chrome will be reset to its default settings, otherwise just close the window to continue as usual. There are no other settings or options, nothing else to do at all. Google provides few details of what the Chrome Software Removal Tool actually does. They do claim. Find programs and components that affect Chrome If you notice changes in the settings of your Chrome browser, there is a small utility that can help you identify the issue and correct it. Created by Google itself, it goes by the name of Chrome Cleanup Tool (Google Chrome Software Removal Tool), enabling you to detect programs that interfere with Google Chrome and remove them. Since toolbars, browser add-ons and pop-up ads are not typical malware, your antivirus solution might fail to detect their presence. Chrome Cleanup Tool is specifically designed to find programs and components whose installation resulted in modifications of Chrome's settings, providing you with a simple means to reset them. Remove interfering components with a click The application does not require installation and starts looking for suspicious programs as soon as you launch it. The number of findings are displayed within a small window, along with an option to remove them all, but their names are not revealed, so as to prevent name modifications that might cause Chrome Cleanup Tool not to work as it should. In some cases, a system reboot might be required in order for the changes to take effect. Once the issue is fixed, Chrome restarts and prompts you to reset the browser settings. Scan for malicious programs that cause issues with Chrome Chrome Cleanup Tool is an attempt to enhance the browsing experience of Chrome users, providing them with a simple method to factory reset the settings and remove programs that cause trouble to the browser. More aggressive malware might be impossible to remove or detect, so you might need a reputable antivirus solution to clean the system. Note that this application is not designed to search for all types of viruses and malware components, but only those that cause issues with Google Chrome. Homepage Download: Link 1 Link 2
  17. Google Chrome Software Removal Tool is an easy-to-use program which tries to get a broken Chrome installation working again.Launch it and the tool scans your PC for programs which Google considers "suspicious" or "known to cause problems with Chrome", and offers to remove them. Bizarrely, the CSRT won't give you the names of these suspicious programs, so you'll have to trust it. Or you can just run the program to see if it thinks there are any, then click "Cancel" instead of "Remove" when the report appears. Whatever you do, once the scan is complete, CSRT launches Chrome with the chrome://settings/resetProfileSettings command, prompting you to reset your Chrome settings. Click "Reset" and Chrome will be reset to its default settings, otherwise just close the window to continue as usual. There are no other settings or options, nothing else to do at all. Google provides few details of what the Chrome Software Removal Tool actually does. They do claim. Find programs and components that affect Chrome If you notice changes in the settings of your Chrome browser, there is a small utility that can help you identify the issue and correct it. Created by Google itself, it goes by the name of Chrome Cleanup Tool (Google Chrome Software Removal Tool), enabling you to detect programs that interfere with Google Chrome and remove them. Since toolbars, browser add-ons and pop-up ads are not typical malware, your antivirus solution might fail to detect their presence. Chrome Cleanup Tool is specifically designed to find programs and components whose installation resulted in modifications of Chrome's settings, providing you with a simple means to reset them. Remove interfering components with a click The application does not require installation and starts looking for suspicious programs as soon as you launch it. The number of findings are displayed within a small window, along with an option to remove them all, but their names are not revealed, so as to prevent name modifications that might cause Chrome Cleanup Tool not to work as it should. In some cases, a system reboot might be required in order for the changes to take effect. Once the issue is fixed, Chrome restarts and prompts you to reset the browser settings. Scan for malicious programs that cause issues with Chrome Chrome Cleanup Tool is an attempt to enhance the browsing experience of Chrome users, providing them with a simple method to factory reset the settings and remove programs that cause trouble to the browser. More aggressive malware might be impossible to remove or detect, so you might need a reputable antivirus solution to clean the system. Note that this application is not designed to search for all types of viruses and malware components, but only those that cause issues with Google Chrome. Homepage Download: Link 1 Link 2
  18. Google’s conduct is a “willful and contemptuous disregard of various court orders.” The Justice Department is demanding that a federal judge sanction Google for failing to abide by court orders to turn over data tied to 22 e-mail accounts. "Google's conduct here amounts to a willful and contemptuous disregard of various court orders," the government wrote (PDF) in a legal filing to US District Judge Richard Seeborg of California. The government added in its Wednesday brief: Google is entitled to have its own view of the law and to press that view before a court of competent jurisdiction. However, when faced with a valid court order, Google, like any other person or entity, must either comply with such an order or face consequences severe enough to deter willful noncompliance. The issue before this court is what sanction is sufficient to achieve that goal. Google said it wasn't complying with the order because it was on appeal. Google also said it was following precedent from a New York-based federal appellate court that ruled Microsoft doesn't have to comply with a valid US warrant for data if the information is stored on overseas servers. Google is appealing the California warrant to the San Francisco-based 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals on the same grounds. However, neither Seeborg nor the 9th Circuit is bound by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals' decision— which the government has appealed to the US Supreme Court. (The US circuit courts of appeal are not bound to follow rulings by their sister circuits, but they all must obey precedent from the Supreme Court.) "Google therefore does not intend to comply with the August 14 Order while seeking appellate review," the company wrote Judge Seeborg. Google was asking the court to be held in civil contempt in a bid to speed up the appellate process of its case. Such a move, which on its face seems counterintuitive, has been done before. In the Microsoft case, the government and Microsoft agreed to have Microsoft held in contempt so as to hasten the appellate process and get that case before the Supreme Court in a quicker fashion than without a contempt ruling. What's different now, however, is that the government wants the judge to sanction Google as well. The government did not seek sanctions against Microsoft, and it didn't seek sanctions against Google in a different case on the topic of whether the US tech sector must comply with US warrants for data stored on overseas servers. According to Google: The government agreed to a similar stipulation in the Microsoft case, and indeed it recently entered into such a stipulation with Google in another jurisdiction with stayed sanctions identical to those Google sought here. In this case, however—despite this Court's recognition that Google is proceeding in good faith in this litigation to seek clarity on an important legal issue—the government refused to enter into any stipulation with a stay of sanctions. The government noted that "the customary sanction for an individual's refusal to comply with court-ordered disclosure is immediate imprisonment." But the authorities are not pressing for that because "a corporate entity obviously cannot be imprisoned for its refusal to comply with a court order, the usual contempt sanction imposed against corporate entities is a fine." Evil Google The government, meanwhile, accused Google of fashioning a system that kept consumer data stored on various servers across the globe—just so it could defy court orders. Even more alarming is the fact that Google went out of its way, spending thousands of man-hours and forgoing other engineering projects, all so that it would be positioned to refuse to disclose any of its foreign-stored data—or, more precisely, any data it could not confirm was held in the United States—without seeking judicial relief or guidance and without limiting its new tooling to be used for warrants issued out of the Second Circuit. While it's not clear that any amount of monetary sanctions could hurt Google's bottom line, the search giant has two weeks until it must respond. A hearing will come soon after. "The discrepancies in court decisions underlines our view that data surveillance laws need to be modernized to safeguard users' privacy, protect law enforcement's legitimate need to collect digital evidence, and provide clarity," Google said in a statement. This story becomes even more legally complex and nuanced because Google has agreed to comply with warrants if they seek data that is on one of its oversees servers. But despite challenging dozens of warrants, it has given up fresh challenges while continuing to fight others that were in the legal pipeline. Google and other services began challenging US warrants for overseas data after a federal appeals court sided with Microsoft last year in a first-of-its-kind challenge. Microsoft convinced the New York-based 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals—which has jurisdiction over Connecticut, New York, and Vermont—that US search-and-seizure law does not require compliance with a warrant to turn over data stored on its servers in Ireland. The Supreme Court is expected to announce any day whether it will hear the government's appeal of that Microsoft case, which has huge privacy ramifications for consumers and for the tech sector. The sector is being asked by the US government to comply with court orders that sometimes conflict with the laws of where the data is stored. Courts outside the 2nd Circuit's jurisdiction have routinely scoffed at that court's Microsoft ruling and have ordered companies to comply with warrants if they can access the data from within the United States, regardless of where the data is stored. < Here >
  19. A monopoly both in search and advertising, Google, unfortunately, shows that they are not able to resist the misuse of power. I have known Google longer than most. At Opera, we were the first to add their search into the browser interface, enabling it directly from the search box and the address field. At that time, Google was an up-and-coming geeky company. I remember vividly meeting with Google’s co-founder Larry Page, his relaxed dress code and his love for the Danger device, which he played with throughout our meeting. Later, I met with the other co-founder of Google, Sergey Brin, and got positive vibes. My first impression of Google was that it was a likeable company. Our cooperation with Google was a good one. Integrating their search into Opera helped us deliver a better service to our users and generated revenue that paid the bills. We helped Google grow, along with others that followed in our footsteps and integrated Google search into their browsers. However, then things changed. Google increased their proximity with the Mozilla foundation. They also introduced new services such as Google Docs. These services were great, gained quick popularity, but also exposed the darker side of Google. Not only were these services made to be incompatible with Opera, but also encouraged users to switch their browsers. I brought this up with Sergey Brin, in vain. For millions of Opera users to be able to access these services, we had to hide our browser’s identity. The browser sniffing situation only worsened after Google started building their own browser, Chrome. Now, we are making the Vivaldi browser. It is based on Chromium, an open-source project, led by Google and built on WebKit and KHTML. Using Google’s services should not call for any issues, but sadly, the reality is different. We still have to hide our identity when visiting services such as Google Docs. And now things have hit a new low. As the biggest online advertising company in the world, Google is often the first choice for businesses that want to promote their products or services on the Internet. Being excluded from using Google AdWords could be a major problem, especially for digital companies. Recently, our Google AdWords campaigns were suspended without warning. This was the second time that I have encountered this situation. This time, however, timing spoke volumes. I had several interviews where I voiced concerns about the data gathering and ad targeting practices – in particular, those of Google and Facebook. They collect and aggregate far too much personal information from their users. I see this as a very serious, democracy-threatening problem, as the vast targeting opportunities offered by Google and Facebook are not only good for very targeted marketing, but also for tailored propaganda. The idea of the Internet turning into a battlefield of propaganda is very far away from the ideal. Two days after my thoughts were published in an article by Wired, we found out that all the campaigns under our Google AdWords account were suspended – without prior warning. Was this just a coincidence? Or was it deliberate, a way of sending us a message? When we reached out to Google to resolve the issue, we got a clarification masqueraded in the form of vague terms and conditions, some of which, they admitted themselves, were not a “hard” requirement. In exchange for being reinstated in Google’s ad network, their in-house specialists dictated how we should arrange content on our own website and how we should communicate information to our users. We made effort to understand their explanations and to work with them on their various unreasonable demands (some of which they don’t follow themselves, by the way). After almost three months of back-and-forth, the suspension to our account has been lifted, but only when we bent to their requirements. A monopoly both in search and advertising, Google, unfortunately, shows that they are not able to resist the misuse of power. I am saddened by this makeover of a geeky, positive company into the bully they are in 2017. I feel blocking competitors on thin reasoning lends credence to claims of their anti-competitive practices. It is also fair to say that Google is now in a position where regulation is needed. I sincerely hope that they’ll get back to the straight and narrow. < Here >
  20. Last Friday, someone in Google fat-thumbed a border gateway protocol (BGP) advertisement and sent Japanese Internet traffic into a black hole. The trouble began when The Chocolate Factory “leaked” a big route table to Verizon, the result of which was traffic from Japanese giants like NTT and KDDI was sent to Google on the expectation it would be treated as transit. Since Google doesn't provide transit services, as BGP Mon explains, that traffic either filled a link beyond its capacity, or hit an access control list, and disappeared. The outage in Japan only lasted a couple of hours, but was so severe that Japan Times reports the country's Internal Affairs and Communications ministries want carriers to report on what went wrong. BGP Mon dissects what went wrong here, reporting that more than 135,000 prefixes on the Google-Verizon path were announced when they shouldn't have been. Since it leaked what the monitors call “a full table” to Verizon, the fat-thumb error also provided a “peek into what Google's peering relationships look like and how their peers traffic engineer towards Google”. For example, BGP Mon explains how the mistake hit ISP Jastel (Jasmine Telecom) in Thailand: “If we take a closer look at the AS paths involved starting at the right side, we see the prefix was announced by 45629 (Jastel) as expected. Since Jastel peers with Google (15169) that’s the next AS we see. The next AS in the path is 701 (Verizon) and this is where it is getting interesting as Verizon has now started to provide transit for Jastel via Google. “Verizon (701) then announced that to several of it’s customers, some of them very large such as KPN (286) and Orange (5511). So by just looking at four example paths we can see it hit large networks in Europe, Latin America, the US, and India (9498 Airtel).” BGP is the Internet's protocol for distributing routing information between networks. A BGP advertisement shouts out to the rest of the internet to announce things like “if you give me traffic for Verizon, it will reach its destination”. Designed for a more trusting (and much smaller) Internet, BGP's most serious shortcoming is that it's up to network admins to check and filter information in route advertisements. As BGP Mon notes, BGP leaks are “a great risk to the Internet's stability”, and both sides of an advertisement should be filtering them before accepting them. Previous BGP incidents have sent YouTube traffic to Pakistan, blackholed Chinese traffic, made Belarus the default route for more traffic than it could handle, and redirected Level 3's traffic to Malaysia. There are various proposals to tweak BGP to stop this sort of thing happening, but as is so often the case, implementation is lagging far behind requirement. Article BGPMON - explanation of cause of outages in Japan and beyond
  21. The “Unknown Sources” security option in Android is known by many. This is what needs to be ticked in order to install apps downloaded from outside of the Google Play Store, whether it’s an app that hasn’t officially rolled out yet, an app not available in your region, APKs from one of the Humble Mobile Bundles, or something else. In Android Oreo, Google has changed the way in which this works in order to make Android safer. Rather than being a single switch for all unknown sources, this option now comes in the form of an individual Install Unknown Apps permission that needs to be approved each time you install an app downloaded from outside of Google Play. “When used on a device running Android O and higher, hostile downloaders cannot trick the user into installing an app without having first been given the go-ahead,” states Android Security Product Manager Edward Cunningham on the Android Developers blog. This should mean that Oreo users won’t fall foul to installing a malicious app masquerading as something innocuous, just because they ticked a box for a completely different app sometime earlier. Like other permissions, a user can also revoke the Install Unknown Apps permission at any time. This change follows a number of recent Google efforts aimed at tightening up Android security, such as its Play Protect suite, which began rolling out a few weeks ago. As the owner of software that’s in operation on more than 2 billion devices, security is obviously an important issue for Google. In the post on the changes to unknown apps, Cunningham took the opportunity to reaffirm that the Play Store continues to be “one of the safest places” for Android users to install apps. Still, try to be mindful when installing anything on your phone. View: Original Article
  22. Quick Tip Today am gonna show you how you can download your favorite Android Apps directly from Google Play Store. From the Play Store, search for your favorite app, copy the link with the app id visit apps.evozi.com/apk-downloader/ Paste the link and click generate download link. Wait for some seconds as your download link is been generated. After some few seconds, your link should be ready for download. eNJOy!!! source: thetechblog
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