UPDATED – Apple Developer Website Hacked – #3

apppleApple Developers got a delightful update in the past couple of days. More of the site is back…

The Apple Developer Network status page has seen quite a bit of updates lately. In fact, Apple developers got a nice surprise over the weekend – much of the site’s resources are back, including software downloads.

That didn’t take too long, and I’m really pleased with the level of progress that Apple has made since putting the status page up.

While the Member Center is still offline, each of their three dev centers – Mac, iOS, and Safari – are back up and running. The latest released build of each related developer preview for OS X Mavericks, iOS 7 and Safari are available from each page. However, please note Mavericks, Developer Preview 4, released on 2013-07-22, still isn’t showing as available via the OS X Development Center. Currently, the most current release is Developer Preview 3, released on 2013-07-08. If you want Developer Preview 4, you’ll still need to download it via the Mac App Store after installing Developer Preview 3.

AAPL Status

A lot has happened with this story, and I’m going to move on to other items at this point, unless and until we hear about what actions, if any, will be taken against the security engineer that caused the whole bally-hoo in the first place. At that point, we’ll want to revisit the story, as I’m certain there will be consequences, and quite likely, serious consequences.

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Create web banners for your websites with Banner Maker Pro

I love websites. Information is the key to getting specific points across to people and communicating that message in the right way, can be very important. That’s why I really like Banner Maker Pro. It’s a website banner tool for Windows; and its really easy to use.

Banner Maker Pro is software that allows you to create web-based banner ads, Facebook banners, web buttons, web headers, animated gifs, logos, image ads and other web graphics. Its wizard-like interface makes the process very simple and easy to complete. Simply follow the tabs at the top of the program to go step-by-step in the image making process. When you’ve completed the banner, you can slice it, if needed or just save it as a GIF, JPEG, or PNG and add it to your website.

Creating a banner with Banner Maker Pro is really just that easy.  You don’t need any graphics expertise.  With it, you can create banners for Facebook Timeline and then quickly upload it to Facebook.  The application contains over 20 new animated background and 100 new background images in a variety of sizes.

Banner Maker Pro is good at what it does. It allows you to quickly and easily make banners for your websites and then upload them where they need to be.  The process is easy to complete and the software, equally as easy to use.  The biggest problem with the application is not what it can or can’t do, however. At nearly $40USD, the application is expensive for what it does.  Getting value from the software is going to depend on the number of banners you create and the revenue, if applicable, they generate.

read full review | download Banner Maker Pro

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Develop and deploy professional looking, standards compliant websites with Adobe DreamWeaver CS5

Today, it’s all about the internet.  If you’re product, service, or other offering isn’t available online in some way, you’re going to miss out on a great deal of business. It may also be safe to say that your budding business may never get a chance to flourish without a website to help you hock your wares. This is one of the reasons why I like tools like Adobe DreamWeaver. It’s a multi-platform website development tool.

Adobe Dreamweaver CS5.5 is part of Adobe’s award winning Creative Suite.  It’s one of the industry-leading web authoring and editing tools; and it provides both visual and code-level capabilities for creating standards-based websites and designs for the desktop, smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices.

Designing for mobile devices and mobile computing is easy with the Multiscreen Preview panel. With its media query support, developers can use DreamWeaver styles and visualization rendering for a wide range of devices in a single panel. This is important as getting the view of your site right for a multitude of mobile devices can vastly effect not only visibility and marketing tactics, but sales as well.  To help improve your mobile interactivity, you can add code hinting with jQuery. It’s an industry-standard JavaScript library, that makes it simple to add a wide range of interactivity to your web site. DreamWeaver comes with a number of different mobile phone templates to help you get a jump start.

DreamWeaver supports Standards and has been updated to support CSS3 and HTML5. Design View now supports media queries and applying different styles as you adjust screen dimensions. DreamWeaver helps you to code for the future with HTML5 via code hinting and Design view rendering support. Its Live View now includes support for QuickTime with its <video> and <svg> tags.  Its updated WebKit rendering engine gives you the ability to check your site on the fly, during development.  You can preview designs for multiple devices with real-time media query,  HTML5 and CSS3 support and capabilities.

read full review | download Adobe Dreamweaver CS5

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Get access to all of your files on all of your computing devices with Dropbox

The Cloud.  If you don’t have a piece of it, you’re behind the times and you may be in a serious predicament.  Getting your own private piece of the cloud is so important that I co-wrote and edited an important piece on it for Information Week last summer. The gist of the article was alternatives for what I consider to be one of the absolute BEST online backup and file access tool on the internet today, and really the application and service to copy or beat – Dropbox. It’s a multiplatform tool; and again, it’s a must have.

Dropbox is a free service that lets you bring all your photos, documents, and videos anywhere. This means that any file you save to your Dropbox will automatically save to all of your connected computers, phones as well as the Dropbox website. You’ll never be without the data you need, as long as you have an internet connection.

Dropbox makes sharing files easy.  You can invite your friends, family and teammates to any folder in your Dropbox, and it’ll be as if the data was saved right to their computers. You can send people links to specific files in your Dropbox if sharing an entire folder isn’t appropriate. This makes Dropbox perfect for team projects, sharing party photos with friends, or any number of file sharing needs.

If your computer has any kind of meltdown, and you lose EVERYTHING, don’t worry. Dropbox has you covered.  You can use Dropbox to restore all the data from your backup folders in a snap. It’s perfect for hard drive upgrades and computer rebuilds.

read full review | download Dropbox

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Indispensable tool for the active Internet user: Kaspersky Password Manager

You know… its all about the Internet these days. This website, the other web service, and this or that social network – if you don’t have some kind of online presence, you’re likely the type who doesn’t compute much.

However, most of the people that I know – geeks and noobies alike – are all over the Internet. It’s a vast and dangerous place. That’s why I’m thankful for tools like Kaspersky Password Manager. It’s a security and system utility for Windows.

Kaspersky Password Manager is the latest in advanced, digital identity protection. It provides multiple layers of defense against keyloggers and hackers. You only have to remember one master password, and all of your log-ins for your applications, websites and services are completed automatically entered for you when called for.

Kaspersky Password Manager securely stores your passwords and other, related personal data in an encrypted vault on your computer. The vault can only be accessed by a master password or other, supported authentication method that you define, ensuring that your passwords are always safe. KPM fills in logins and passwords automatically; and It supports major browsers, including IE and Firefox, as well as your important Windows applications. You no longer have to remember all of your usernames and their associated passwords – just one master password.

Read full review | Download Kaspersky Password Manager

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Create ad-hoc VPN’s and protect your internet activity with Hamachi

I hate trolls!
You know what I mean…those individuals that skulk around looking for an opportunity to tap into your network or file transmissions with the intent of stealing your sensitive information.  Those kinds of people just really bother me. Over and above the fact that mean people stink, what I send to another person or website is no one’s business but my own (and the other person designated as the information receiver). That’s why I really like applications like Hamachi. It’s a multiplatform secure networking tool that works for both Windows and Mac.

With Hamachi, you can create virtual private networks on-demand. LogMeIn’s Hamachi is a hosted VPN service that lets you securely extend LAN-like networks to distributed teams, mobile workers and your gamer friends alike, in minutes. With it, you can remotely network printers, cameras, gaming consoles and more, all on demand and all over the web.

When implemented, users are provided access to your network resources, from a centralized gateway, without modifying firewalls or network routers.  You can provide user access
to specific computers, printers, drives, etc. Hamachi also allows you to connect all of your network clients to each other.  You can quickly and easily create a simple, virtual, mesh network that allows remote machines to directly connect to each other, thereby giving users basic network access to all the network resources they need, all while using 256-bit SSL encryption, employing the same level of security as your bank, over both public and private networks.

read full review | download Hamachi

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Create stunning websites without programming knowledge using Namo WebEditor

Nearly everybody has a website. Be it a blog or some kind of enthusiast site, most of the people that I know have some kind of web presence. The biggest problems with these kinds of sites is that they tend to look plain, boring, and uninteresting. That’s why Namo WebEditor may be the tool for you. It’s a web site creation tool for Windows.

Namo WebEditor is an easy to use web creation tool. Its designed for everyone; and its powerful, visual, authoring environment allows you to simply add content to webpages without knowledge of HTML, XML or other programming languages. WebEditor’s Site Wizard & Site Manager make creating and maintaining a complete website easy. Advanced users can create and manage websites using the WebEditor’s Real-Time Synchronization tool between its WYSIWYG Editing Mode & HTML/Quick Tag Editor.

Read the full review | Download Namo WebEditor

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Google Farmer Update

Google has recently changed the algorithm which determines the ranking of web pages. Website owners globally have cause for concern over the effects these changes will have on their websites’ visibility. These changes took effect on February 24th in the US and will filter to the UK in due course.

The updated algorithm is set on a page-level basis, meaning every page of a website should contain unique, authoritative, high quality content in order for the website not to suffer. Gone are the days where web pages could be stuffed with keywords to boost their ranking.

Google remains the most popular search engine. To maintain this position it seems the update was long overdue as so called ‘content farms’ and poor quality sites were commonly being ranked on the first page. The full effect of the Google Farmer Update will not be apparent until it is rolled out across the UK.

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