LIFE

"Have you heard? WhatsApp is offline!"

Sven Krumrey
It was supposed to be a totally normal evening. Alan Parson's soothing "Tales of Mystery and Imagination" was purring from my speakers, a steaming cup of tea plus some reading material were ready and I had plans to watch a detective show. But then, I heard an almost forgotten sound: an SMS notification. Nowadays, this form of communication is mostly used by the authorities or companies for account verification. Sent by a friend, it read "WhatsApp is gone, Facebook is gone, people are already asking what's next! It's total chaos! more

A review of Google Nest Mini: Is the smallest Nest worth it?

I'm generally not a fan of "smart speakers" like Amazon's Echo Dot, Apple's HomePod or Google's Nest Mini. I like the technology but I didn't own any of them for the longest time. I won't froth at the mouth about the alleged spying nature of these devices but I will say I dislike voice-based interfaces. I'd rather talk to people than machines, and type my commands into the latter when they require input. Recently though, I switched electricity providers and got two Google Nest Minis in my mailbox as a reward (they usually sell for about €50 a piece). Google is one the three major players in the market for virtual assistants, yet I never had the chance to review their Mini–until now. Let's get started! more

Where I can watch the series? On a different channel in a different country!

Recently, we sat together and reminisced about the wild past. When the internet was still young, pirated copies of current movies were everywhere. People usually brought hidden cameras to theaters and recorded the screens–background noise and poor image quality included! Who'd ever want to watch that? Then, streaming services appeared on the scene and illegal movie sharing sites became less frequented. For a fair price, users could instantly pick from a solid selection of movies and songs, good enough for most users. For some time though, illegal sites have been seeing an increase in visitors–and stream service providers may be partly to blame! more

Happy birthday Linux!

Even though we are a company with a clear focus on Windows, Linux certainly deserves flowers on its 30th birthday! After all, its influence on computer science in general and all of our lives in particular cannot be overstated. Whether you're enjoying the onboard computer in your car, your "smart" TV or this blog article on your Android device, Linux (or its derivatives) is running the show. Even Windows users frequently benefit from standards, features and ideas born in the multitudinous Linux community. more

Fight against evil or step in the wrong direction? Apple's latest plans

Apple wants to keep child sexual abuse material off their iCloud servers and away from minors–and has created an uproar among their fans and beyond. Because, however noble and necessary their cause, the technical implementation and unspoken general suspicion towards everyone sparks controversy. So what is Apple planning, how far can they go as a private company, and how are other service providers handling the issue? Let's find out! more