Firefox 49.0.2 is out

Mozilla has released an update for the stable version of its Firefox web browser that brings the version of it to Firefox 49.0.2.

Firefox 49.0.2 is a bug fix and security release that fixes several issues in the browser, among them two that we talked about just yesterday.

The new version is already available, and users may want to run a manual check for updates to speed up the updating process. This goes especially for users who are affected by one or multiple of the bugs fixed in the new version.

Firefox 49.0.2

firefox 49.0.2

firefox 49.0.2

Do the following to run a manual update check in Firefox:

  1. Tap on the Alt-key on the computer keyboard, and select Help > About Firefox from the menu.

This should open a small About Mozilla Firefox window on the screen that checks for updates automatically. Firefox should find the version 49.0.2 update for the browser, and either download and install it automatically, or suggest to do so.

The following issues are fixed in the new version: (here is the changelog link)

  1. Asynchronous plugin rendering for Flash is now enabled by default. This addresses performance issues and should reduce crashes when visiting sites that use Flash. (Bug 1307108)
  2. D3D9 fallback disabled if hardware acceleration is used to prevent graphical artifacts on the screen. (Bug 1306465)
  3. Fixed a network bug that prevented some Firefox users from seeing the user interface on start. (Bug 1305436)
  4. Fixed a compatibility issue that affected file uploads. (Bug 1306472)
  5. Fixed another issue affecting Array.prototype.values. (Bug 1299593)
  6. Fixed a canvas filters graphics issue in HTML5 apps. (Bug 1304539)
  7. Changed diagnostic information on timing for tab switching. (Bug 1304113)

Mozilla on top of that fixed several security vulnerabilities in Firefox 49.0.2.

CVE-2016-5287: Crash in nsTArray_base<T>::SwapArrayElements

A potentially exploitable use-after-free crash during actor destruction with service workers. This issue does not affect releases earlier than Firefox 49.

CVE-2016-5288: Web content can read cache entries

A developer demonstrated that web content could access information in the HTTP cache if e10s is disabled. This can reveal some visited URLs and the contents of those pages. This issue affects Firefox 48 and 49.

The Android version has been updated as well to Firefox 49.0.2 for Android. It only got one of the fixes that dealt with compatibility issues with file uploads, and the security fixes.

Now You: Have you been affected by any of the issues?


Article Name

Firefox 49.0.2 is out


Mozilla has released an update for the stable version of its Firefox web browser that brings the version of it to Firefox 49.0.2.


Martin Brinkmann


Ghacks Technology News


via gHacks Technology News

Top 10 Best eBook Cover Resources for Indie Authors

There are hundreds of thousands of e-books available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Indie authors often find it challenging to stick out from their competition and often forgo proper design and do it themselves. I think cover artwork summons associations in the reader’s mind. It can influence whether or not the potential reader chooses […]

via Good E-Reader Blog – ebook Reader and Tablet PC News

Amazon launches “Family Vault,” a way for families to share Prime Photos’ free storage

One of the perks of Amazon Prime membership is free, unlimited photo storage via Prime Photos. Today, Amazon is extending that benefit to the family members of the main account holder, with the launch of a new Prime Photos feature called “Family Vault.” With Family Vault, an Amazon Prime member can invite up to five family members or friends to join their online account, in order to combine photos and take advantage of free photo storage, as well as another 5 GB for videos and other files.

The idea with the upgraded service is to make it easier for families or close friends to combine their photos and videos in a single destination, so everyone in the group can see them on their own devices.

Once added, each Family Vault member can contribute to the group’s archive. Photos can be added on an individual basis by either clicking or swiping on them, depending on the device, or there’s an option to automatically add all their photos and videos to the Family Vault at one time.

There’s no cost to those who are added by an Amazon Prime member to the Vault, the company notes.


In addition to this new feature, Amazon is also now rolling out new smarter search technology in Prime Photos- something its rival Google Photos already offers.

With this upgrade, you can search across your photos by keywords related to what those images contain. For example, “soccer” or “dog.” How well this compares with Google’s search technology remains to be seen, as the feature is only available to the public as of now.

There’s also a new “People” view, also similar the people-finding options in Google and Apple’s photo services. This lets you browse photos of individual family members and friends by clicking on their thumbnail picture. Other filters let you search by location or date.

While Amazon Photos has to date remained a more utilitarian counterpart to the polished and prettier services from Apple and Google, these upgrades have it catching up – at least in functionality – with some of the baseline features the competitors today include. And considering that it’s a free service for Prime members, it could now be seen as “good enough” for many users.

The company is also today formally announcing the new photo printing service, which was spotted in the wild last month (causing Shutterfly’s stock to take a nose dive).

This lower-cost printing option offers prints that start at 9 cents, and includes free shipping for Prime members. Essentially, photo printing is just another add-on for Prime with slim margins, while Amazon’s real goal is getting more consumers signed up as Amazon Prime subscribers.

The new features, including Family Vault, are live at or via Prime Photos mobile apps.

via TechCrunch

This flexible keyboard is hiding an entire Windows PC

Technology has reached a level of maturity in which it’s possible to carry around a full-fledged computer in your pocket. While smartphones technically fall into this category, I’m more referring to tiny PCs like Intel’s Compute Stick or the Kangaroo Plus from InFocus.

One of the problems with such computers is that you need to also carry around input devices like a keyboard and mouse (assuming there aren’t any where you plan to use the system). This shortcoming has led to some creative experimentation among device manufacturers.

Acooo’s oneBoard PRO+ is a perfect example. Stuffed into an otherwise unassuming mechanical keyboard is a quad-core Android PC. It’s a clever concept but what if you’re extremely pressed for real estate? That’s where something like the Vensmile K8 mini PC comes into play.

As Liliputing notes, the device hardly looks any different than the flexible, rubber-style keyboards that have been available for years. But upon closer inspection, you’ll see that there’s a solid section on the right that serves as a touchpad.

The dual-purpose touchpad is also the chassis for a tiny desktop computer consisting of a quad-core Intel Atom x5-Z8300 (Cherry Trail) processor clocked at 1.44GHz (Burst to 1.84GHz), 4GB of DDR3 RAM and 64GB of eMMC flash memory. You also get dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 as well as HDMI out, VGA out, a USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0 port, an expansion card slot and a 3.5mm headphone jack – all running Windows 10 Home.

GeekBuying is now accepting pre-orders with plans to ship later this month. Expect to pay $199.99 or the opportunity.

via TechSpot

Today’s bad idea: PETA is using Trump’s ‘grab a pussy’ line in a new ad for pet adoption



PETA, the people who’ve compared eating pork to cannibalism, fat-shamed non-vegetarians, and casually compared people to Nazis , are now taking pages out of Donald Trump’s book in their latest ad meant to encourage New Yorkers to adopt pets.

Rather than keeping things casual and just suggesting that people bring a new furry friend home, the proposed billboard implores people to “grab a pussy,” echoing Trump’s words from recently-surfaced audio in which he brags about grabbing women by their vaginas against their will. The infamous phrase is written in big, bold patriotic letters above an image of a kitten laying on its back staring at the camera.


The official statement for the ad describes it as a “purrvocative” call to action meant to remind people of the difficulties faced by cats without homes.

“We hope this ad will encourage people to think for a second about the crisis facing cats and other animals,” PETA President Ingrid Newkirk said, acknowledging the controversy surrounding Trump.

PETA goes on to describe the problems caused by the US’s exploding population of homeless cats and gently reminds anyone unfamiliar with their mission statement that PETA doesn’t “directly or indirectly participate or intervene in any political campaign.” At no point does the organization acknowledge the fact that it’s making light of the GOP frontrunner describing how he has forced himself onto a number of women.

From PETA’s perspective, making jokes about sexual assault are totally chill so long as the joke ends with you adopting an animal from a shelter. As abhorrent an idea as that is, it’s at all not surprising. This is PETA, this is what they do. Adopting cats is great! Downplaying allegations of rape for a laugh is not.

via Fusion

Observable universe contains ten times more galaxies than previously thought

Observable universe contains ten times more galaxies than previously thought

Hubble European Space Agency Information Centre

Other than a few foreground Milky Way stars, every object in this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image covering a portion of the southern field of the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey (GOODS) is a galaxy. GOODS is a large galaxy census, a deep-sky study by several observatories to trace the formation and evolution of galaxies. Click the image to see a large-scale version. Image credit: NASA, ESA/Hubble.
Other than a few foreground Milky Way stars, nearly every object in this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image covering a portion of the southern field of the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey (GOODS) is a distant galaxy. GOODS is a large galaxy census, a deep-sky study by several observatories to trace the formation and evolution of galaxies. Click the image to see a large-scale version. Image credit: NASA, ESA/Hubble.

Astronomers using data from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and other telescopes have performed an accurate census of the number of galaxies in the universe. The group came to the surprising conclusion that there are at least 10 times as many galaxies in the observable universe as previously thought. The results have clear implications for our understanding of galaxy formation, and also help solve an ancient astronomical paradox — why is the sky dark at night?

One of the most fundamental questions in astronomy is that of just how many galaxies the universe contains. The Hubble Deep Field images, captured in the mid-1990s, gave the first real insight into this. Myriad faint galaxies were revealed, and it was estimated that the observable universe contains about 100 billion galaxies. Now, an international team, led by Christopher Conselice from the University of Nottingham, UK, have shown that this figure is at least ten times too low.

Conselice and his team reached this conclusion using deep space images from Hubble, data from his team’s previous work, and other published data. They painstakingly converted the images into 3-D, in order to make accurate measurements of the number of galaxies at different times in the universe’s history. In addition, they used new mathematical models which allowed them to infer the existence of galaxies which the current generation of telescopes cannot observe. This led to the surprising realisation that in order for the numbers to add up, some 90 percent of the galaxies in the observable universe are actually too faint and too far away to be seen — yet.

“It boggles the mind that over 90 percent of the galaxies in the universe have yet to be studied. Who knows what interesting properties we will find when we observe these galaxies with the next generation of telescopes,” explains Christopher Conselice about the far-reaching implications of the new results.

In analysing the data the team looked more than 13 billion years into the past. This showed them that galaxies are not evenly distributed throughout the universe’s history. In fact, it appears that there was a factor of 10 more galaxies per unit volume when the universe was only a few billion years old compared with today. Most of these galaxies were relatively small and faint, with masses similar to those of the satellite galaxies surrounding the Milky Way.

These results are powerful evidence that a significant evolution has taken place throughout the universe’s history, an evolution during which galaxies merged together, dramatically reducing their total number. “This gives us a verification of the so-called top-down formation of structure in the universe,” explains Conselice.

The decreasing number of galaxies as time progresses also contributes to the solution of Olbers’ paradox — why the sky is dark at night. The team came to the conclusion that there is such an abundance of galaxies that, in principle, every point in the sky contains part of a galaxy. However, most of these galaxies are invisible to the human eye and even to modern telescopes, owing to a combination of factors: redshifting of light, the universe’s dynamic nature and the absorption of light by intergalactic dust and gas, all combine to ensure that the night sky remains mostly dark.

via Hacker News

Snipaste efficient screenshot tool with extras

Snipaste is a free portable screenshot taking tool for Microsoft Windows devices — Linux and Mac versions coming — that is easy to use and ships with extra functionality that you may find useful.

There are numerous free and paid screenshot programs out there for Windows, and it is usually difficult to convince users to try a new program once they have set their mind on using a particular program.

On the free side, there are excellent programs such as Greenshot or ShareX, options to take shots right from Firefox’s Developer Toolbar, or paid programs like SnagIt.



Snipaste falls into the free screenshot taking tools group. Windows users can download a 32-bit or 64-bit version of the program for their devices — there is a version for XP as well — and run it right after extraction from that location.

Like most screenshot taking tools, it sits quietly in the background waiting for input. You may control the program directly through the system tray icon or by using keyboard shortcuts.

Snipaste does not use the usual keyboard shortcuts — using the Print-key on the keyboard — to power its screenshot taking functionality. Instead, it mapped the functionality on the F1 key.

A tap on F1, or a click on the program’s icon opens selection mode. Move the mouse around and Snipaste will select windows or areas on the screen automatically as a suggestion. This is not a new concept as many programs in the vertical support this, but it is welcome as it makes things easier more often than not.

You can still draw a custom sized rectangle around an area on the screen though so that is covered by the program as well. The program displays a magnifier by default which magnifies what is underneath the mouse cursor so that it is easier to fine tune the borders of the screenshot.

There is also a color picker tool included which shows the color underneath the mouse cursor and lets you copy it to the clipboard with a tap on the "c" key on the keyboard.

Once you make a selection editing tools are displayed directly on the screen. You can move the screenshot, or use one of the available tools instead. Tools include what most users require such as an option to draw an arrow, add text, erase or blur, highlight, or draw rectangles around certain parts of the screenshot. A tap on the save icon opens the file browser that you use to save it.

The display of the editing options on the desktop make the operation a bit quicker than with the majority of comparable tools. SnagIt for instance loads the image in an editor where it can be edited afterwards.

While that is handy already, it is only part of the application’s capabilities. Since it is called Snipaste, you’d probably assumed already that it supports pasting functionality as well.

Pasting works a little bit different than the default Windows operation. Instead of pasting the contents of the clipboard on the active window, Snipaste displays a previously copied image on the screen. Think of it as a preview of the image on the screen that you can interact with. It supports multiple sources including images, plain text, HTML and various others.

You may zoom in and out, rotate, set transparency or use other controls to interact with that image. A right-click displays options to save the image, or to destroy it again.

There is also a grouping feature available that enables you to display multiple items at the same time on the screen.

Snipaste preferences


The program’s preferences are quite extensive. You may use them to change snipping and pasting behavior, and to configure appearance functionality.

There is a lot to configure there, with hotkeys probably being one of the interesting options. First, the tab displays all available hotkeys so that you know what is supported and what is not. While you can only change some, the global hotkeys such as snipping and pasting functionality, there is whole bunch of internal hotkeys that you cannot change but make use of.

Closing Words

Snipaste is an efficient portable screenshot taking tool for Microsoft Windows devices that offers excellent functionality. The program supports multi-monitor setups and HiDPI displays on top of what has been mentioned already.

The application uses roughly the same amount of memory that SnagIt uses on the system.

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