Microsoft has officially launched an experimental social networking site called , which combines facets of social networking, search, and media sharing with a user interface resembling Google+.



The Facebook IPO will reportedly happen May 18. The company announced Thursday it would price shares between $28 and $35 and offer 337,415,352 shares of Class A common stock. Facebook will become the most valuable U.S. Internet company at the time of its IPO, which should value the company at between $85 and $95 billion.

Facebook has produced a 30-minute video pitch to show big-time investors why sinking money into a publicly traded Facebook will be a good idea. Check it out here.

Taken from SPY GAMES:

THE terms of service of Google’s new cloud service “Drive” could allow US law enforcement agencies to access your data, without your knowledge and without the need for a warrant.


Or so says the inventor of one of the first cloud computing services, TrendMicro cloud evangelist, David Asprey.

Mr Asprey told that the terms of use of Google Drive “destroys any expectation of privacy because you license your data to a third party”.

“You give Google full right to do whatever they want to do with your data and of course one of those things is to give your information to law enforcement without a subpoena,” Mr Asprey said.

By signing up to Google Drive, users give the tech giant a global license to “use, host, store, reproduce, modify or create derivative works and to publish, publicly perform and distribute that content.”

Mr Asprey said the new terms of service extended the reach and power of the Patriot Act – which was passed shortly after September 11, 2001, giving the US Government permission to look at people’s documents without their knowledge or permission.

The new terms gives the US Government and law enforcement more opportunity to encroach on the rights of citizens worldwide, Mr Asprey said.

“Having all your data in the cloud be private, and requiring a warrant in order for it to be viewed by law enforcement will just go away over the next few years if Google allows this to stand,” Mr Asprey said.

But what does this mean for Australia?

Secretary of Electronic Frontiers Australia, Kim Heitman, told that Australian law was “all but irrelevant” to Google Drive because the terms of service said that anyone storing data on Google Drive was subject to the law of California.

“You can try as a consumer to say that Australian consumer law in some way applies but it’s a hard road to hoe,” Mr Heitman said.

Google says they comply with US laws and legal processes “just like any law-abiding company”.

“We have a track record of advocating on behalf of user privacy in the face of law enforcement requests (including but not limited to US Dept of Justice subpoenas),” Google said in a statement to

“We look at each request to be sure they adhere to both the letter and the spirit of the law before complying. We do our best to notify the subject named in any such requests in order to give them the opportunity to object.”

Mr Heitman said that Google’s privacy policy, which was updated last month, no longer said that it would only hand over court documents without a court order or a warrant.

“They basically said they’ll comply as these things fit,” he said.

The lawyer and certified technologist also said that Google was the only service that explicitly stated that it would scan your data in order to better market advertisements for you.

“Dropbox doesn’t do that. Microsoft SkyDrive doesn’t do that,” Mr Heitman said.

“So you’ve got this situation as ever with Google that you are the product. Whatever you have on your Google drive can be used for any of its purposes.”

“They keep changing their purpose, so as time goes on you may find yourself in the circumstance that the use of your data becomes more intrusive than just targeted ads on your search page or on YouTube.”

Google said that it made clear “what belongs to you and stays yours”.

“You own your files and control their sharing, plain and simple,” the tech giant said. “Our Terms of Service enable us to give you the services you want – so if you decide to share a document with someone, or open it on a different device, you can.”

Mr Heitman and Mr Asprey said that if people were concerned about their privacy, they should encrypt their data before uploading it to the cloud.

Encryption basically allows users to “encode” their data, making it unreadable to anyone accept the user who possesses a “key”, which is an algorithm that unlocks the data in order for it to be viewed.

Aside  —  Posted: April 30, 2012 in Competition, Google, What's New

Early this month Microsoft has mistakenly revealed her (hybrid) search/social networking site called “Tulalip”. And on the 14th, they have taken down the splash page (pictured above) and replaced it with a message.

“Thanks for stopping by. is an internal design project from a team in Microsoft Research which was mistakenly published to the web. We didn’t mean to, honest,” the message stated.

The splash page describes the Tulalip service as a way for users to “find what you need and share what you know easier than ever”. There are options to connect the service with both Facebook and Twitter. And the word “OPEN” on the upper left. The page also contains two rows of images that look very similar to the “Tiles” interface design found on Microsoft’s new Window’s Phone 7 operating system.

Furthermore, the splash page’s domain name is shorthand for “Social” and four lettered as a complement to

My own opinion: Publishing the splash page was not accident, and Tulalip is not just an “internal design project”. Microsoft has realized that the future of communication sooner or later will be controlled\guided by social networks. And to that fact, they have decided to join in and give their best to win. So, revealing the site by mistake; wasn’t a mistake, but was a way to publicize its new upcoming site and give the audience a sneak peek.

In the end, this means more features for us users (for instance: when Google+ launched having “Hangout” feature, Facebook ran to Skype to partner with them to create the same feature, benefiting from their expertise).

My only one concern is: How far the social network evolution will go? Will it evolve till we won’t need to meet each other again, or physically hangout together, to really feel alive? share with me your opinion.

Facebook competing with Google+ (Google’s new social network site) video chat feature called  Hangouts that lets users chat one-on-one or in groups of up to 10:

Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has promised that on July 6, Facebook would “launch something awesome” that the company’s Seattle team developed. On Friday, Facebook distributed official invitations for a special event at its Paolo Alto headquarters on July 6.

TechCrunch claims to have an inside scoop that the social network has partnered with Skype to develop a video chat service, according to “a source with knowledge of the partnership.”

Writes TechCrunch,

“The product has been built on Skype and will include a desktop component. It’s not clear to me whether that means it will just work if a user has Skype already installed on the computer, or if additional software will need to be downloaded even if the user already uses Skype. But it’s clear that there’s very deep integration between the products, and from the user’s perspective, the product will be an in browser experience.”

PCWorld predicts that the feature could grow into “serious competition” for Skype. Facebook currently does not offer a video chat feature.

There has also been speculation that Facebook may announce several other rumored works-in-progress, like an official iPad app, or even the super-secret Project Spartan mobile project.

As promised, Facebook has announcement on July 6, at 10 a.m. PST (1 p.m. EST, 6 p.m. GMT) at the company’s headquarters in Palo Alto, California; a partnership with Skype that will integrate video chat directly into the Facebook platform. Group chats are also rumored to be on the docket, though some speculate that Facebook may take today to unveil a new mobile platform.

Check the announcement here:

The new features include a redesigned chat interface, group chats, and the aforementioned video chat, all explained on Facebook’s blog.

The group chat feature will let users chat with multiple friends at once by selecting “Add Friends to Chat.” According to Facebook, 50 percent of users are using the Groups feature, for things like co-ordinating events. Users can add friends that are not online at the time, and those friends will receive a summary of the chat later on. The feature rolls out today.

The chat redesign takes into account the size of a user’s browser window and adjusts accordingly. Zuckerberg noted that users have found it difficult to start chats with the previous design. A new sidebar appears when the window is large enough and lists your most-messaged friends, even ones who are not online. A simplified chat tab will give users “one-click access” to chatting with friends. The new chat design will also roll out today.

Video chat, which the company collaborated on with Skype, lets users click a video call button at the top of their chat window in order to start the call. Users can also leave video messages for people who aren’t there. Once a user clicks the video chat feature, a plug-in is downloaded to enable the call in “ten to twenty seconds.” The feature will roll out to everyone in the next few weeks, though users can get on earlier if they’re eager by going to It is not yet available on the mobile app.

Zuckerberg also revealed that Facebook has hit 750 million worldwide users, with 4 billion pieces of information shared each day.

Via HuffPost Tech.

How far will this competition go??

Google finally unveiled on Tuesday its new social project, Google+. It’s an ambitious gambit that aims to turn all of Google’s services into one giant social platform, and in the process steal some thunder from Facebook while making Google – for once – a big player in social networking.

Google has redesigned the top navigation bar to work across all of its services. It’s very similar to the notification bar found in Facebook, which alerts users about new activity concerning their accounts.

“We’d like to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software. We want to make Google better by including you, your relationships and your interests,” wrote Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra in a blog post.

Google+ has a handful of sub-services designed to match various social needs. Circles lets users decide which of their friends and followers can see individual updates or other pieces of content. It’s a feature Facebook took quite a while to develop with “Lists”. Hangouts works with each social Circle by creating access to a multi-person video chat. Sparks is a customized feed aggregator of content curated from across the web.

Google+ also has a mobile aspect, which could be especially appealing to people using Android phones. Nearly every update made through Google+ lets users add location data. The company also addressed the problem of unreliable data networks by building in Instant Upload. The feature will save pictures that get cut off through faulty connections and upload them later on. Finally, there’s Huddle, a real-time group messaging feature.

While it’s clear that Google as spent a lot of effort on Google+, the company has a poor track record with social products. Social network Orkut, Google Buzz and Google Wave are all examples of products had at best mixed results.

Some, like blogger Dave Winer, are skeptical of Google’s ability to challenge Facebook by turning its search product into a social network. In a blog post titled “Google Yawn“, he writes:

“…All you do is make your core product heavier. The thing you wanted to kill (Facebook) doesn’t go anywhere. It hardly notices what you did. The users might care to the extent that they’re annoyed… Products like the one Google just announced are hatched at off-sites at resorts near Monterey or in the Sierra, and were designed to meet the needs of the corporation that created it. A huge scared angry corporation.”

At least in Facebook’s case, it didn’t need a series of videos to explain how to use its service. Google, on the other hand, has six total videos demonstrating the various uses of Google+.

Google+ is now available on Android Market and the mobile web. The company is testing the full roll out of the service, which is available by invitation only.

Via SocialBeat

It’s a great site with lots of features and keen about social privacy too. Check the videos below:

:موقع أكثر من رائع ، ممتلئ بالخصائص المميزة ، وأيضاً حريص على الخصوصية الأجتماعية ، شاهدوا الفيديوهات التالية

We’ve all seen Facebook posts that say things like, “Finally! Facebook got a dislike button! Click here!” or “See who is viewing your profile OMG I cannot believe it!!!!!!” or something else equally enticing.

Some of us, overwhelmed by desire, have fallen for these posts and learned an important lesson the hard way: Facebook is full of spam.

Many of us fled from MySpace in hopes of a cleaner, spam-free, and polished platform, but it was only a matter of time before hackers figured out how to attack us on Facebook, too.

On Facebook, there are a few different ways your account, privacy, and computer can be compromised. Sometimes hackers will simply phish for your log-in information and hijack your account, spamming your friends in the process. Other times, the app that promised to be a “dislike” button will instead download and install malware on your computer. — Taken from cnet forum —

“Surveys are an increasingly common tactic used to disguise a wide range of security threats lurking on Facebook and other social networking sites,” said Christopher Boyd, senior threat researcher, GFI Software. “Scammers also have improved their ability to immediately hijack high-profile news for their attacks. By exploiting breaking and developing news stories, they are catching users off guard. Users should always be wary of promises of free items or sensational content, and they should never share personal and financial information online unless they are dealing directly with a known, trusted and secure website — not a Facebook or Twitter post claiming to represent a recognized business or organization.”

Top 10 Malware Detections for May

GFI’s top 10 malware list is compiled from collected scan data of tens of thousands of GFI VIPRE® Antivirus customers who are part of GFI’s ThreatNet™ automated threat tracking system. ThreatNet statistics revealed that the vast majority of malware threats found continue to be Trojans, mostly detected in generic form.

Detection Type Percent
Trojan.Win32.Generic!BT Trojan 22.51
Trojan.Win32.Generic.pak!cobra Trojan 3.79
Trojan.Win32.Generic!SB.0 Trojan 3.73
Zugo Ltd (v) Adware (General) 2.75
Trojan-Spy.Win32.Zbot.gen Trojan 1.63
INF.Autorun (v) Trojan 1.38
Pinball Corporation. (v) Adware (General) 1.37 (v) Trojan 1.3
Malware.JS.Generic (JS) Exploit 1.23
FraudTool.Win32.FakeRean Rogue Security Program 1.13

Check out the video below, how to avoid it, and different ways to get rid of it.

A recent story on CNN demonstrated how far tech companies would go to draw in and retain experienced software engineers, the article indicated that companies can even offer competitive six-figure salaries!

A new tech start-up company called Hipster was trying desperately to recruit software engineers with experience in building Web software and mobile apps . Due to the hard competition with some large companies like Facebook, Google, and Yahoo, they came up with an eccentric  job ad saying that they would reward whomever can fill their vacant developing positions with $10,000 in cash and a year’s worth of free beer. This eccentric approach succeeded. They received around 500 job applications, and some of them were excellent candidates with great experience.

The article also mentioned what major tech employers like Facebook, Google, and Yahoo is doing  to maintain their talent pool: offering their employees some incentives, such as free lunches, laundry, massages, oil changes and dentistry. Not to mention high salaries and benefits.

Aside from excellent job prospects, software engineers are having relatively high salaries on average. The Bureau stated that the average annual salary for computer applications software engineers was $85,430 in May 2008, and $92,430 for computer systems software engineers.

With all the above mentioned privileges, it is a good time indeed to be a computer software engineer.

Here is some statistics from PayScale, which is by the way a great site to find out what your worth

Another Facebook feature challenging the concept of privacy!

This feature has been available in the United States since December, allows users to upload photos to their accounts and have the site make suggestions for whom among a user’s friends this photo belongs (tags). And as always this new feature is automatically turned on in every ones users’ privacy settings and requires users to manually turn it off, if desired!

A debate among privacy advocates arguing that this new features should not be turned on without the user consent:

“Our concern, as usual, is that Facebook is making changes to its privacy and creating new features without giving people sufficient notice and giving them a choice as to whether they want to participate,” said Chris Conley, of the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California.

“If this new feature is as useful as Facebook claims, it should be able to stand on its own, without an automatic sign-up that changes users’ privacy settings without their permission.”Representative Edward J. Markey (D-MA) agreed

Facebook CEO Mark Zukerberg has always defended such practices arguing that requiring users to turn on each new feature would diminish their Facebook experience. Yet in a statement released today on their blog, the company admitted they should have been more clear explaining the feature to users to avoid confusion and that they are working on “satisfy concerns” brought forward by lawmakers and privacy advocates.

Instructions for disabling the facial recognition feature:



I think users should never ever trust any social network site and always think of ways to maintain their privacy, because in my opinion the main purpose of social network sites like Facebook is to break every rule of privacy and broadcast everyone’s secrets all over the internet, Just to like what they did in college. And that is only my opinion.

One of the actions taken to try and protect the users from being hacked:

HTTPS Everywhere is a Firefox extension produced as a collaboration between The Tor Project and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. It encrypts your communications with a number of major websites.

Many sites on the web offer some limited support for encryption over HTTPS, but make it difficult to use. For instance, they may default to unencrypted HTTP, or fill encrypted pages with links that go back to the unencrypted site.

The HTTPS Everywhere extension fixes these problems by rewriting all requests to these sites to HTTPS.

Download the extension and read more here.

HTTPS Everywhere can protect you only when you’re using sites that support HTTPS and for which HTTPS Everywhere includes rules. If sites you use don’t support HTTPS, ask the site operators to add it; only the site operator is able to enable HTTPS. There is more information and instruction on how server operators can do that in the EFF article How to Deploy HTTPS Correctly.