Jul 212011

Google announced recently that they noticed some strange patterns of activity during some routine maintenance at one of their datacenters. The patterns were tied to malware infections that sent users through a custom Internet proxy which falsified search results. The pages listed in the results were usually that of other mal-intent in order to further infect a user’s computer.

To combat this they are displaying a message on the Google home page for computers that are affected. It looks something like this.

I am assuming they are able to detect it by looking at the source of where the traffic is coming from. Since the malware they are targeting redirects through an Internet proxy, if the traffic comes from that proxy server the message will be displayed.

If you see the message above it is likely that the computer being used is infected and needs to be cleaned. There has been some concern generated from other admins that the scammers will now use the message above to mimic since it has the Google approval and has merit. Google considered this and wasn’t too concerned by it because the only way to show a falsified message is to be infected in the first place!

Just thought you may be interested if you get questions about this.

Jul 012011

I’ve been on Google+ now for the last couple of days. I must say, I am quite the fan! I love the slick, clean, interface! I am looking forward to when more people can sign up because, unfortunately, they still have invites disabled so it’s only me and a small handful of people… :) It makes for slow “social news” days!

I am writing this post in the hopes that it catches Google’s attention. We’ll see if we can talk loud enough above the noise in order for this to be read by The Man. You can help! If you think this is a good idea, please share this article by clicking the Twitter, +1, or Facebook buttons at bottom of this page! The more of you that do this the better chances we have of being heard!

UPDATE – In addition to sharing with your friends, please also consider heading over to Google Moderator to vote on this feature!

The Circles functionality is really one of the best features of Google+. For those of you that are not yet aware a circle is basically a group. You can put all your friends in a “Friends” circle, all your family in a “Family” circle, and all your acquaintances in an “Acquaintance” circle. You can even create your own circles as you have other needs. As you share in Google+ you have the ability to limit your post to a specific circle, many circles, or all circles.

However, there is one I see drawback to the way Circles are currently implemented. The management of many groups can quickly become a pain, and it can be difficult to keep track of who is in which circle as contacts can also be members of many circles. Currently, Circles are implemented in a non-hierarchical way.  This is my proposal…

As you can see in the chart above with the way my proposal is implemented Circles can be members of other circles. The circles that are members of other circles are called sub-circles, child circles, or if you wanted to give it a creative marketing name they could be called Cliques. :)

Consider this, you are a member of a HAM Radio club (which I’m not, it’s just an example people), and you want to send a message to all eight of your HAM Radio club friends because your HAM Radio is broke. This is easy to do in both the current implementation and my proposal’s implementation. You can simply send the message to your HAM Radio circle.

Now, where the hierarchical circles becomes useful is when you want to start sharing messages a little more broadly. Let’s say you wanted to organize a party and you’d like all 62 of your friends to be invited (Closest, HAM Radio, & General) but none of your family (things are going to get a little crazy at the party). Using this structure you would simply send the messages to your Friends circle and all would be included… even the popular HAM Radio friends, those crazy guys! This is possible because the Closest, HAM Radio, & General circles are members of the Friends circle so anyone in these circles are automatically considered Friends as well.

The same thing applies if you wanted to announce a pregnancy to your entire family… 😉 (hint hint) You could simply send the message to your Family circle! Or if you wanted to schedule a family reunion for your “Dad’s Side” of the family you would send the message to your “Dad’s Side” circle… I think you’re getting the picture.

A positive here is a person may only need to be a part of a single circle. However, you can still have the flexibility of adding them to other circles. Let’s say you have a family member who is also a co-worker. The family member can be apart of both circles, so if you send a message to your only family, or only your co-workers, the family member can still get both messages. This greatly limits the amount of management needed and helps ensure that only the people you want getting certain messages get them. It’s also a very flexible implementation, you can set this up however it fits YOUR life!

If you like the idea please consider sharing this by clicking some of the sharing buttons at bottom of this page!

Thanks for reading guys! You’re the best!

Jun 282011

All right my faithful readers, Today Google has officially announced the beta release of Google+… The +1 buttons now make sense! It’s currently running in “invite only” mode so if anyone has a Google+ Invite feel free to hook me up! :)

One of the major focuses of Google’s new social networking is security… In real life people have some sort of privacy. We all have the ability to close the blinds on our house if we want. That way even if we’ve given someone our home address, they aren’t allowed to peer in.

Another nice feature is the ability to have what Google has dubbed, “Hangouts”. This is basically a High Def video chat room where friends can come and go as they please. I think this feature could end up being fairly useful but I HOPE this doesn’t mean people will eventually stop hanging out at coffee shops, restaurants, or the arcade… Oh wait, does anyone hang out at arcades anymore? No, they all cost $2.00 to play now…

There are plenty of other nice features they are adding, check out the link above from Google’s official blog. Quite honestly, I’m hoping it replaces Facebook. Hopefully, everyone that lives, eats, and breathes Facebook will stay there so I’m not bombarded with pointless updates… Or better yet, I’ll bet you Google+ will give you more options to filter most of it out.

So, if you’ve got any Google Plus invites sitting around would you mind hooking me up? Shoot me a message from my Contact page. I’ll remove this line once I get one, so if you’re reading this, I’m still waiting my faithful readers! :) Plus, as soon as I get some I’ll hook up some of my comment-ers! Double :)