Sometimes, it takes government pressure to spur a company into action. For years, there have been rumors that Microsoft Office is a telemetry data hog with little to no transparency as to what is collected and when. The Dutch government had finally had it and prompted an extensive investigation. The result: 91 pages of unfettered and unabated data collection frenzy along with a lack of organizational structure that borders on chaos - enough to shake up even the most consummate of business professionals.
Recently, I got a new cellphone to review. After I had gone through a couple of its features, I accessed the front camera and took a selfie. When I saw the result, I couldn't believe my eyes. I looked like, well, a buttermilk biscuit with eyes. Was the camera broken? Had a co-worker played a trick on me and spread butter over the lens? Nope, it was the beauty filter, enabled by default. Had I asked for it? No. Do I look better as a nebulous figure? Maybe, on Halloween. There's a bigger issue here, though.
In the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, two men are nearly beaten to death by an angry mob, in Brazil, made-up news are used to massively influence voters and German kids are living in fear of a monster - all because of WhatsApp. What sounds like a mediocre science fiction novel has now become a reality. The popular messenger is no longer just a messenger but a news platform that spreads fear, prejudice and hatred to millions, leaving its owners wondering how put the genie back in the bottle.
Using an OS for many years can feel like marriage: there are good and bad times and you adapt to get along. Your partner may no longer be the love of your life but you've become intimately familiar and know each other's quirks. However, once updates are forced down your throat, errors get ignored and customer service is next to nonexistent, the relationship quickly cools off and you start taking precautions. In other words: Get your act together, Microsoft!moreTOP
Many stereotypes fall apart on closer inspection. One is that young folks who grew up with technology must have mastered it while, in contrast, elders are believed more likely to break something when having to install, say, a graphics driver. But is that really true? I beg to differ! A recent study from Microsoft found users under 40 easily fall prey to fraudulent calls and emails, no surprise there, but how can you grow up with technology and still be an amateur at it?