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Proposed Bill to Stop the Ban of Encryption

An unlikely combination of a Democrat from California (Ted Lieu) and a Republican from Texas (Blake Farenthold) are introducing a bill in defense of maintaining secure cryptographic encryption. This is a breath of fresh air compared to the seemingly unanimous government decisions to push for retroactively attempting to ban/weaken encryption. The idea behind the bill is to take the issue of encryption to the federal level and stop any particular state from banning it. The bill has been named the Ensuring National Constitutional Rights of Your Private Telecommunications Act of 2016, or the ENCRYPT Act (a backronym if I’ve ever seen one).

Currently, encryption is being attacked by two methods. The first being to outright ban it altogether, claiming that it impedes investigations of criminal and terrorist organizations. This is of course true, as encryption is intended to secure communications from any outside entities, even if the outside entities are the police. However, this is generally seen as a reasonable price to pay for securing internal communications from real attackers (such as the very same criminals and terrorists). Encryption is what makes HTTPS sites more secure, and is even what the government itself already uses to keep important documents from being stolen. If you’re logging into your bank account, and don’t want your account stolen, you would probably prefer using an encrypted channel over an unencrypted one.

The second, and more recent, method is to introduce “backdoors” into encrypting technologies, so that you supposedly get the benefits of encrypting messages from attackers while government agencies are also able to decrypt it themselves (like having a “master-key”). The problem with this method, though, is that it is simply not possible to have a secure backdoor like this, as any method of implementing it will likely become exposed and exploited sooner or later, rendering everything relying on the technology instantly vulnerable.

Ultimately, this bill is certainly a step in the right direction, and we can only hope that it catches on.

Deal of the Week: iClever Magnetic Wireless Bluetooth 4.1 Headsets Sweatproof Sport Headphones

The iClever Magnetic Wireless Bluetooth Sport Headphones are a must for the music enthusiast on the go. Enjoy the simplicity of easy Bluetooth 4.1 pairing and clear Hi-Fi audio quality without transmission delay. With the smart magnetic controller, you can easily control conversation and audio playback. The earbuds magnetically attach so you can wear these headphones like a necklace when not in use. It’s even splash-proof, making it perfect for working out with. Designed for active use, it stays comfortable around your neck or in your ears all day long. Plus, it contains 2 rechargeable batteries and works up to 7 hours on a single charge. And to top it off, it can pair up to two devices at the same time.

Only $39.99 today for a very limited time. Visit Green Dragon in N. Little Rock for more information or shop online today!

MusicBee: An Awesome alternative to iTunes

While iTunes is great, it can be a bit cumbersome, quite large, difficult to navigate, and lacks certain operational quality. Welcome to MusicBee, a free music player that is fully customizable, easy to configure, and comes with a plethora of plugins to enhance your experience.

This sophisticated freeware software is perfect for managing your extensive music collection while making it easy to organize and find your music files on your computer, portable device, and on the web.

Theme your player for a unique look and feel. Tag your music by adding metadata information to help you stay organized. While online, MusicBee can automatically find useful information about your music collection or the song you’re currently playing. You can also put the player in Party mode, allowing you to easily create playlists so you turn your device into a digital jukebox on the fly. Even better, synch your library to your devices and add songs by ripping them from your CDs. Grab your copy of MusicBee today!

DIY Tech: Moxie Showerhead and Wireless Speaker

Take your shower to the next level: Enjoy your favorite audio utilizing Bluetooth technology up to 30 feet away. The speaker assembly magnetically attaches to the shower head making it easy to detach. This is clever for several reasons: it makes cleaning the shower head a breeze but with the supplied speaker dock, you can use the speaker as an independent portable water-resistant wireless speaker system for your smartphone or tablet. This also allows for easy recharging of the lithium-ion battery. Enjoy your morning showers again with your favorite tunes, audiobook, news, or any other audio source from your smart-device with up to 7 hours of use between charges. Shower head comes in polished chrome, bronze, nickel, or white.

Estimate: $150

Unravel

Unravel is a cute little puzzle platformer developed by Coldwood Interactive. Only just released on February 9, it hasn’t recieved very much press despite reviews being fairly positive. In particular, the game is said to be very visually impresive, as well as toting a very nice soundtrack. The main complaint seems to be over the variety of puzzles, claiming that many of the puzzles get boring further on in the game. Being a puzzle game, that is of course a rather significant complaint, but if you are still interested you can find more information on it here.

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This week in Computer History

February 24, 1955 – Apple Co-Founder Steve Jobs Born

Apple Computer co-founder Steve Jobs is born. Jobs was instrumental in developing the Macintosh, the computer that took Apple to unprecedented levels of success. After leaving the company he started with Steve Wozniak, Jobs continued his personal computer development at his NeXT Inc. In 1997, Jobs returned to Apple to lead the company into a new era based on NeXT technologies and consumer electronics. Some of Jobs’ achievements in this new era include the iMac, the iPhone, the iTunes music store, the iPod, and the iPad. Under Jobs’ leadership Apple was at one time the world’s most valuable company.

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