In the News: 2014-10-19

Written on:October 19, 2014
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Apple News: Apple’s New Mac Mini: Should You Upgrade?
Apple just made a slew of announcements this week, but between the thinner gold-tinted iPad Air 2 and the eye-popping iMac with Retina 5K display, it (finally) updated the little desktop that could, the Mac mini. The pint-sized desktop gets an updated roster of ports and components, along with a lower starting price. The last update was the 2012 version$765.00 at ABT, which is sure to leave a lot of Mac mini owners wondering, should I get the new model? By and large, the answer seems to be yes. The Apple Mac mini (2014) looks almost identical to the 2012 model, with the same aluminum chassis measuring 1.4 inches thick and 7.7 inches square. Aside from a little dark spot for an IR receiver and a pinhole for an integrated microphone, the new Mac mini has a plain front face, plain brushed metal sides, and a densely packed I/O panel in the back. From above, it still looks like a solid block of metal bearing the Apple logo.
Read full story => PCmag

Technology News: You Are Apple’s Greatest Security Challenge
Apple’s focus on the security of its operating systems used to be pretty minimal. Fortunately, it didn’t really matter. Spend enough time in the security world and you realize that it’s defined by economics and human behavior, not technology. When I first started writing about Apple in 2006, the company had a good security team, but didn’t give it many resources. It’s hard to justify spending a lot on security when you aren’t suffering security losses. Just ask Microsoft. For years the company didn’t invest much in security, even as Windows came to dominate the computer industry. Then the bad guys showed up, and in 2001 it became nearly impossible to protect Windows-based PCs from attack. Microsoft’s biggest customers, like big banks and the U.S. government, threatened to move to something — anything! — else as the costs to install security defenses and account for security breaches skyrocketed. The result was the Trustworthy Computing Initiative in 2002. Microsoft now has the strongest security program in the industry.
Read full story => TidBits

Programming News: Comparing Clouds: IaaS Provisioning Experience
There is no perfect cloud platform. Shocking, I know. Organizations choose the cloud that best fits their values and needs. Many factors go into those choices, and it can depend on who is evaluating the options. A CIO may care most about the vendor’s total product portfolio, strategic direction, and ability to fit into the organization’s IT environment. A developer may look at which cloud offers the ability to compose and deploy the most scalable, feature-rich applications. An Ops engineer may care about which cloud gives them the best way to design and manage a robust, durable environment. In this series of blogs posts, I’m going to look at five leading cloud platforms (Microsoft Azure, Google Compute Engine, AWS, Digital Ocean, and CenturyLink Cloud) and briefly assess the experience they offer to those building and managing their cloud portfolio. In this first post, I’ll flex the infrastructure provisioning experience of each provider.
Read full story => Seroter

Photography News: How to Find and Use Hyperfocal Distance for Sharp Backgrounds
You are out photographing a landscape. You have a nice foreground and background in the frame, and you want as much as possible in focus. You set a small aperture to get a nice wide depth of field. But still, you know that not everything in your frame will be sharp. The fact is that lenses just cannot keep everything – from what is right in front of you all the way to the horizon – acceptably sharp at the same time. You can focus on something very close at the risk of blurring the background. Or you can focus on something far away and risk blurring your foreground elements. So where should you focus? More particularly, how close can you can focus while still keeping the background sharp?
Read full story => DigitalPhotographySchool

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