Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) and LinkedIn Corporation (NYSE: LNKD) on Monday announced they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $26.2 billion, inclusive of LinkedIn’s net cash. LinkedIn will retain its distinct brand, culture and independence. Jeff Weiner will remain CEO of LinkedIn, reporting to Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. Reid Hoffman, chairman of the board, co-founder and controlling shareholder of LinkedIn, and Weiner both fully support this transaction. The transaction is expected to close this calendar year.
LinkedIn is the world’s largest and most valuable professional network and continues to build a strong and growing business. Over the past year, the company has launched a new version of its mobile app that has led to increased member engagement; enhanced the LinkedIn newsfeed to deliver better business insights; acquired a leading online learning platform called Lynda.com to enter a new market; and rolled out a new version of its Recruiter product to its enterprise customers. These innovations have resulted in increased membership, engagement and financial results, specifically:
Facebook has decided on quite the way to convince people to download Moments: by threatening to delete thousands of photos if they don't.
The notice has to do with a photo syncing feature that was recently removed from Facebook's main mobile app. Starting in 2012, the core Facebook app was able to automatically upload photos from a phone's local camera roll to a private album on Facebook. They were kept there for storage, but also to make it easier to later share them publicly on Facebook.
That syncing tool has now been moved out of the core Facebook app and into the photo app Moments. Facebook made it clear that this would happen — and in fact it happened months back, seemingly without much pushback. What Facebook was less clear about was what would happen to photos that had previously been synced.
Global ad provider Google has come out in favor of the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement.
The web giant's general counsel Kent Walker noted in a blog post that the agreement "is not perfect" and decried the lack of transparency that has dogged the process, but argues that it "recognizes the Internet's transformative impact on trade."
"The Internet has revolutionized how people can share and access information, and the TPP promotes the free flow of information in ways that are unprecedented for a binding international agreement," Walker writes.
"The TPP requires the 12 participating countries to allow cross-border transfers of information and prohibits them from requiring local storage of data. These provisions will support the Internet's open architecture and make it more difficult for TPP countries to block Internet sites."
No matter how many times we tell you to change your passwords and make it anything but your birthday, “123456,” or “password,” many still aren’t taking the efforts to make their accounts more secure. So Microsoft is actively doing something about it by banning weak passwords entirely.
The team calls it “dynamically banned,” which means that if your account uses a password that appears in the most-used/stolen password list, Microsoft will force you to create a more complex one instead. This will apply to Microsoft Account and Azure AD services.
Here’s the screen to look out for, if your password is too dumb for Microsoft.
In addition, Microsoft will continue using its lockout mode when you’ve guessed the password incorrectly too many times to prevent a hacking attempt. According to the company, this method keeps hackers out 54 percent of the time (the other 46 percent being you genuinely forgetting the password).
For more info on what Microsoft considers to be a strong password, you can check out its research paper here. But if you don’t have the time, just remember this: make it at least 8-characters long, use symbols and/or numbers, capitalization is your friend, and for the love of Christ, name it after anything but your pet. And if you want to get fancy, add two-factor authentication for an extra layer of security.
Facebook has a link problem. Earlier this week, a security researcher named Inti De Ceukelaire detailed a curious fact about how Facebook Messenger treats privately shared links. Through the right API call, De Ceukelaire was able to summon links shared by specific users in private messages. The links were collected by the Facebook crawler, where De Ceukelaire discovered they were easily accessible to anyone running a Facebook app. Those links could be anything from a popular news story to directions to an abortion clinic. As long as they’re shared in private messages, they’re logged in Facebook’s database, and accessible to API calls.
It would be hard to exploit that bug at scale for a few different reasons. De Ceukelaire was only able to make the API call because he's registered as a Facebook developer, and if he started pulling those links en masse, Facebook would quickly catch on and pull his credentials. Still, the bug points to a number of lingering problems with the conflicting way web services treat URLs, and how those conflicts can put private information into public view.
Apple’s iTunes App Store is home to over 1.5 million apps and Google Play hosts over 2 million, but the number of apps that actually get installed and used on consumers’ devices is still quite small. We already knew that people only interacted with a small handful of third-party apps on a regular basis, and now, according to a new study on mobile app usage, we learn that about one in four mobile users only use an app once.
Based on data from analytics firm Localytics, and its user base of 37,000 applications, user retention has seen a slight increase year-over-year from 34 percent in 2015 to 38 percent in 2016.
However, just because this figure has recovered a bit, that doesn’t mean the numbers are good. Instead, what this indicates is that 62 percent of users will use an app less than 11 times.
Facebook could be listening in on people’s conversations all of the time, an expert has claimed.
The app might be using people’s phones to gather data on what they are talking about, it has been claimed.
Facebook says that its app does listen to what’s happening around it, but only as a way of seeing what people are listening to or watching and suggesting that they post about it.
The feature has been available for a couple of years, but recent warnings from Kelli Burns, mass communication professor at the University of South Florida, have drawn attention to it.
Professor Burns has said that the tool appears to be using the audio it gathers not simply to help out users, but might be doing so to listen in to discussions and serve them with relevant advertising. She says that to test the feature, she discussed certain topics around the phone and then found that the site appeared to show relevant ads.
Chipset manufacturers have been boosting processing power by leaps and bounds in recent years. Now, Intel is going one better with the next-generation Broadwell-E chip family, its first ever 10-core desktop processor.
You heard that right: Intel is going for "10-core" in its branding here, ditching the logical naming progression to "deca-core." Apparently, we don't need Latin with speeds like this chip promises.
The company is targeting power users with its next "Extreme Edition" of Core i7 chips, saying they've been designed with gamers, VR fans, content creators and overclockers in mind. Intel calls these users "mega-taskers." Apparently if you're still just multitasking then you're doing it wrong.
While Intel is talking the "extreme" talk, the company is more focused on iteration than revolution after announcing last year that it would be ditching its "Tick-Tock" product cycle in favor of a "Process, Architecture, Optimization" model.
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