Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Articles

How web 2.0 are you?

In Tech Support Tutorials,Uncategorized on February 9, 2012 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , ,

Published by Leyre Velasco

A couple of years ago we explained how Technical Support had evolved and adapted to the web 2.0 trends. The term Web 2.0 is associated with web applications which facilitate interactive exchange of information, data sharing, and collaboration on the world wide web. It is thought to have been coined after a conference held by O´Reilly Media in 2004. The web 2.0 philosophy promotes web-based communities, hosted services, web applications, social-networking sites, video-sharing sites, wikis, blogs, not to mention social networks aimed at various sociological profiles.

Companies are more and more implementing community knowledge bases enabling users to solve product and customer service issues on their own. In Panda Security, we are particularly sensitive to this issue and have deviced additional means of Support such as forums, multimedia tutorials, blogs, etc. Check out the Homeusers Support website for proof! The Panda Security International Technical Support Forum for example, enables not only moderators, but users to directly help one another.

These new sources improve the quality of support as massive feedback is obtained directly from the users themselves. Community knowledge bases create smarter, more informed customers and users. Content can be authored by both internal and external resources providing a rich source of information relating to the company’s products and services. What´s more, collaboration is a key issue: It improves decision-making, and enables knowledge workers to meet mission objectives with the best information available. However, for an average user, technology in this regard may have already gone too far, and the user finds himself not really prepared to face the trend in technology, some users even questioning the validity of all these tools.

So, before web 3.0, the natural evolution of web 2.0, spreads, let´s test how web 2.0 you are!!  Simply fill in this quiz on social media and web 2.0 by Quizible and check how many of the 32 icons you recognize!!

Which form of interactive 2.0 means do you prefer? Blogs? Forums?Social networks?

Articles

How to update (and not die in the process)

In Uncategorized on February 1, 2012 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , , , ,

Published by Ana Etxebarria

6.45 AM The alarm clock of my BB goes off. As every day, I turn it off, I stretch and as soon as I am able to open my eyes I look to check what’s new. Mhhhh! The App World icon tells me that there are 4 new updates. A new version of Foursquare, WhatsApp, Twitter and of BBM. What is special about these versions? Well, as far as I know, nothing much, but experience tells me that either I update them, or I will be bombarded by those annoying messages informing of the availability of a new version. So much to my regret, I start the update process. Of course, as usual, during the first update the BB freezes and there is no other way to revive it but by removing the battery. Once rebooted, I choose to live with the new version messages and before I starve to death, I decide to go get breakfast.

9.00 AM I arrive at the office. As I start my computer, I fetch some water, turn on the heater, check my agenda …, but just as I prepare to open my Outlook, an update message informing me that Acrobat Reader update is available appears on my screen. The truth is I do not know how many updates Acrobat releases, but my perception is that there is at least, one a week … So after the BB experience a while ago, I choose to upgrade later. I do not feel like it now. I am rebellious. But what is this new shield like icon at the bottom right of my screen? Should I click it?, it won’t be yet another update, will it? … Well, quite right, ladies and gentlemen, on this occasion it is Microsoft kindly letting me know of the availability of new automatic updates. This is wearing me out, really..

17.00 PM It has been days since I last synchronized my iPad. I will do it now that I seem to be a little calmer. I open iTunes, connect the USB, and what is the first thing I see on the screen? Bingo! A new version of iTunes available. Well, I do NOT want it, thank you very much!, Very kind of you! Enough is enough, what a day … And now whaaaat?, another screenshot?, This is not happening, arggggghhhhh !!!!! Now, this time, very politely, and totally free, I am offered a new version of the iPad software … I am not exaggerating one iota.

I give up, I throw in the towel. I cannot put up with it anymore … Let them do whatever they want. Go ahead, update the software! Do so daily if you wish! But please, I do not want to know about it. Do it silently. Do not ask for my permission. At the end of the day, if only at their persistence, they always win…

The moral of my post is the following: If today I had accepted all the kind offers of available updates for my gadgets, I would have upgraded 3 different machines, 7 software programs and an Operating System. There! Not to mention the 52 updates that according to the App Store are available …

Don’t you think that something that is very positive in theory, is becoming a torture and a nightmare for users? What do you think?

Articles

Apps, apps, and more apps

In Uncategorized on January 25, 2012 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Published by Ana Etxebarria

It is clear that the number of applications for smartphones and tablets is almost infinite. There is pretty much an application for everything, and it is fair to say that some of the apps are that divine that they even try to simplify the difficult task of being a parent, helping us find and organize fun activities to keep our children entertained. Plus, many of them are also FREE, so what more could you ask for?

If we focus on the upbringing and education of our children, we also find countless options. There are applications that advise you on what you should and should not do from the moment you know you’re pregnant. Others help you find the name of your baby. Others suggest how to organize a birthday party for the youngest lot. Other apps can tell you where to find parks with swings. Other applications can even help you find your kids if you lose them in a mall before you even have the time to get hysterical. Other apps will suggest physical activities to strengthen their still feeble musculature. Other, other, other …. I could spend hours listing applications for parents and there would still be hundreds, thousands, millions to be discovered.

And, of course, among all these fancy stuff, there are also applications which are most questionable. For example, Tymoot. Pronounced like Time Out, it refers to those moments where your children are sent to their room “to reflect” about the latest deed committed. It is therefore an application that will help us manage the punishments to impose on our children. It is advertised as the “ultimate mobile discipline tool”, which actually sounds quite funny …

The way it works is simple. Enter the birthdates of your children and the app will give you the suggested duration of the punishment in accordance with the children’s age. A priori, this task should not be that complicated for us, as parents and as inexperienced Internet users, as to need a specific application. Everyone knows that the ideal is one minute for each year of the child. But the best is yet to come!

The section entitled “Wheel of Discipline” is advertised as “horrible and terrifying” and it does sound like a sort of medieval torture. It actually does not go that far. It is simply a wheel where punishments of the most varied type are drawn. For example, forcing one child to be present when his/her brother is given preferential treatment or make the child wear clothing of the opposite sex if the child has shown sexist behaviour …

It’s okay for parents to need support. Clearly the world has become so complex that we are extremely vulnerable, but this should not lead to anyone taking advantage of our weaknesses, our lack of time and our inexperience to sell nonsense that will distract us from our real obligations.

Do you feel too burdened by useless applications?, Do you dare to make your own ranking of silly applications? To break the ice, I will start:

Birth Buddy: a woman who is going to give birth is supposed to enter the frequency and duration of contractions …

Articles

Do we lie more on social networking sites?

In Social networks,Twitter,Uncategorized on January 18, 2012 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , , , , ,

Published by Leyre Velasco

There can be no denying that social networking is booming, to the point that head-hunters are increasingly using social media to find and research candidates, as we explained on a previous post on online reputation. That’s why it is so important to take good care of it.

However, can you build a certain online reputation deliberately? Well, yes you can. Nevertheless, it will most likely be a reputation based on exaggeration and, occasionally, sheer lie. The Straight Talking Report, a survey commissioned by UK insurance company Direct Line, has revealed that people are more likely to lie on social networking sites like Twitter than in a face-to-face conversation. According to the research, only one in five people claim to be more honest on Twitter or via text messages, compared to a third who say that they are more frank when talking to someone in real life.

In addition, men tend to lie more via text messages than women (17 percent of men compared to 21 percent of women). Another nugget: Women are less likely to be truthful in person than men, with 12 percent more men claiming to be honest face-to-face than women.

In my opinion, this is perfectly normal for a number of reasons:

Firstly, lying is an in-built part of human nature.

Secondly, there is no body language on the Web, and we all know that in real life there are sometimes subtle movements –a gesture, a look, a blush – that can help to differentiate between a lie and the truth.

And finally there is the concept of the relationship between mask and online identity as defined by Dorian Wiszniewski and Richard Coyne. Basically, they point out that whenever an individual interacts in a social sphere they portray a mask of their identity. And this is even more so when social interaction takes place on the Internet, due to the conscious decisions made by the individual to manage their online reputation.

Social networks like Facebook let you design your own image through posts, tweets, comments, opinions, etc. It is obvious that slightly molding the ‘real you’ is absolutely normal as when you are online anyone can see you, read your comments and opinions, etc… and you are more exposed to criticism. Everything depends on the level of honesty you have when creating your online reputation.

What about you? Where do you have your most honest interactions – online or off?

Articles

Kids and technologies: 6 basic tips to bear in mind

In Security,Teenagers,Uncategorized on January 3, 2012 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Published by Ana Etxebarria

Continuing our series of articles on children and new technologies, today we give you some simple tips to make sure your children stay safe on the Internet.

Last week I posted an article describing two different approaches to parenting in the digital age: controlling and permissive; and despite I am clearly in favor of the latter approach, I am also aware that you cannot lower your guard when dealing with Internet risks.

I still believe that interaction on the Internet is not very different from real-world interaction, and people who manage well in real life do at least equally well in the virtual world. In any event, I must admit the online world may pose additional risks due to the Internet’s immunity and anonymity.

How can you help your children deal with that threat?

  1. Just as you know about your children’s friends, you better also know who your child contacts on the Internet.
  2. Keep an eye on how much time your children spend online, including other points of Internet access too, like smartphones and gaming consoles.
  3. Just as you teach your children never to talk to strangers or accept gifts from them, remind them never to physically meet anyone they’ve only become friends with online. If they decide to meet a cyber-friend in person, go with them.
  4. Talk to kids about the types of information they post online and how it can impact their reputation and future. Kids can unknowingly give out personal details about their life that could be maliciously used… And embarrassing and inappropriate photos and comments can stay with you forever.
  5. Teach them to be cautious with giving too much personal information, such as their location, their parents’ working hours, hobbies, etc. The less potential ‘unfriends’, the better.
  6. As Facebook makes frequent changes to its privacty policy, it is a good idea to sit with your kids and check out their online profiles with them. Pay special attention to their privacy settings and which messages, photos and personal details are accesible to whom.

Are you comfortable monitoring your child’s online world? What are your family’s technology ground rules?

Articles

Social media, teens and parents… Friends?

In Security,Teenagers,Uncategorized on December 28, 2011 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , , , , ,

Published by Ana Etxebarria

Social media has become an extension of the high school playground for the vast majority of teenagers, with its share of flirting, drama, cruelty and flashes of maturity.

In addition, electronic behavior has become a new frontier of parenting and, as a result, our own behavior may be changing as fast as our kids. We’re watching them more closely, talking to them more about online activities and understanding that social media has become part of growing up.

Friends

Friends

Another surprising fact is that 80 percent of parents who use social media (and who also have a child who uses social media) have friended their child on these sites.

This ‘friendship’ poses a dilemma for parents, who have to choose between being controlling parents who check which websites their children have visited, use parental control software, etc, or permissive parents who don’t embrace the trend to monitor and encourage their children’s autonomy.

According to recent studies, only a small percentage of parents (about 15 percent) consciously avoid monitoring their children’s online activities because they trust them. In my opinion that is an incredibly low figure.

I am a mother of three and I belong to a generation where social interaction between children took place in the playground. Well, let my tell you something: back then parents also fell into one of the aforementioned two categories. There were those who didn’t trust their children despite in some cases not having a reason for not doing so, and those who trusted them. Luckily, my parents belonged to the latter group although I had close friends whose parents showed an incredibly high level of distrust towards them.

So, if you think you know your children well enough, there is good communication between you and them, you are a good role model for them, and there is no reason to the contrary…Why not trust your kids? Why are we so worried and why some of us get so intrusive?

Not so long ago a friend of mine told me that they had installed some sort of ‘spyware’ (I can’t find a better word for it) on their 11-year-old son’s computer and they monitor every step he takes online: the games he plays, the sites he visits, the time he spends on each page, the photos he downloads, who he chats with, the content of his conversations, etc. Isn’t it terrible? That’s like reading someone’s journal, tapping their phone lines or hiding cameras in every room in their apartment.

Do you monitor your child’s social media activities? Do you use parental controls? Why or why not? I’d love to hear your opinions or personal experiences.

Articles

YouTube, the new Big Brother?

In Uncategorized,YouTube Videos on December 20, 2011 by tecnologyantivirus Tagged: , , , , ,

Published by Ana Etxebarria

A couple of weekends ago, my family endured a six-hour car trip, and even though our car is not equipped with a DVD player it was made more bearable when I passed our iPads to our children. Despite being 5 and 6 years old respectively, they have already figured out how to play with them and look up videos on YouTube, so that kept them busy for a good while.

Later on, however, I found out that they hadn’t been playing or watching videos but rather taking videos! Much of it consisted of the back of my head and the conversation I was having with her father, nothing more, really. We had said nothing inappropriate, though my husband and I thought the kids were concentrated on their video games.

Those recordings made me think of two recent YouTube parenting episodes. The first was a much-publicized video showing a man, a judge by trade, beating his daughter. The victimized kid posted it to expose the abuse and prevent her sister from going through the same nightmare. It led to public condemnation of the father, who was placed under a temporary restraining order banning him from visiting his younger daughter.

The second was a cute video showing a dog responding to a toddler’s temper tantrum. Viewers can hear the mother laughing as she records the interaction. Here’s the clip:

 

Whereas the angry response to the first video was justified, some of the responses to the second were too harsh in my opinion.

The mother wrote a blog response that told of her shock at both the popularity of the video and, later, at the tone and content of many of the anonymous comments, including one that condemned her for doing ”nothing” as her baby cried.

Here is an excerpt from her letter:

“First I was angry – clearly this person didn’t have kids or they would know that coddling your child isn’t the answer to stopping every tantrum a 2-year-old has. I’ll let this roll off my shoulders… wait…  people think I’m a bad mom after watching this? Hold the Internet presses. We’re shutting down. No more video. No shows, no news reports. What if social services calls and says I’m raising my child incorrectly? Can I possibly defend myself?”

And the question is precisely that: Can she? Should she have to?

In the first example above, the video depicted abuse. It’s a good thing abusive parents have something to worry about but, should the rest of us be on guard, too?

More and more YouTube is part of our lives as parents. We are uploading many of the videos and soon, our children will be publicizing our daily lives, complete with our debatable parenting methods and mistakes.

What if my daughter secretly taped my bad mood this morning and emailed it around? Or, what about what I consider happy moments, such as my two children racing each other down the block? I might record that and send it to their grandparents, but if the video was passed on to YouTube, other people could anonymously criticize me for letting them run and shout. Would I have been so relaxed if I thought there was an audience?

Does the electronic age mean we should always consider ourselves parenting in public as if we were in some kind of “Truman Show” or Big Brother? If so, will that make us better parents?