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From USENET: Microsoft To Release Office For iOS
February 15th, 2014

Microsoft is still working on Office for iPad, and it could debut before July, reports USENET newsgroups. While newsgroups had reported that Microsoft was working on Office for iPhone and iPad some time ago, it ultimately only rolled out an iPhone version and pointed tablet users to Office Web Apps.  However, USENET newsgroup subscribers now reports that development on Office for iPad has both continued and been sped up in order to bring it to market fairly soon.

The product is “likely” to arrive before the touch-optimized version of Office that will run in the Windows 8.1 Start screen environment. Sources suggest that Office for iPad is codenamed ‘Miramar’ and was made a priority late last year. While no fixed release date has been given, it’s rumored to be in the first half of 2014.

As stated in newsgroups, Microsoft has found success on Apple’s platforms historically. The original version of Excel worked on a Mac before it was ready for Windows. Apple had a graphical interface before Microsoft, so Excel was on Apple computers first. Going iPad before Windows would just repeat the past.

The catch is that these USENET sources still don’t know if this will be an Office 365 app, just like we have for the iPhone, or if it will be a true Office suite of apps. Give the fact that the biggest factor that differentiates Windows on a tablet is Office, many newsgroup subscribers biggest bet is for this to require an Office 365 subscription, but we’ll hopefully know soon, as the sources claim that the launch will happen in the first-half of this year.


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USENET Asks: Is Windows 8 A Failure?
March 8th, 2013

Although most USENET newsgroup clients work well on the new OS, Windows 8 has had a tough run, and the number of people taking issue with the OS keeps growing. Now Samsung executive Jun Dong-soo has taken shots at the operating system, blaming it for not improving demand for PCs.

Asked for his take on recent reports that the PC market will continue to contract through 2013, Jun Dong-soo — president of Samsung’s memory chip division — said he doesn’t expect the PC industry to rebound anytime soon. And if and when it does, that rebound won’t be driven by Windows 8.
“The global PC industry is steadily shrinking despite the launch of Windows 8,” Jun was quoted as saying in one USENET newsgroup post. “I think the Windows 8 system is no better than the previous Windows Vista platform.”
Jun isn’t the first OEM executive to fume about Windows 8, of course, but his remarks are particularly interesting because they come shortly after Samsung decided to pull its Windows RT-based ATIV Tab off both the German and American markets.

It does seem disingenuous for PC makers to pin the blame solely on Microsoft’s operating system, as if the hardware is without fault. So far, PC makers haven’t put forth much in the way of compelling Windows 8 hybrids and convertibles, and the ones that did launch late last year were in short supply.

It’s possible that next-generation processors from Intel and AMD, along with refinements to the Windows software in an update codenamed Windows Blue, could make for a healthy second wave of software.

If other OEMs become similarly frustrated with their inability to move Windows 8 and Windows RT machines over the next few months, it could be a very long year for Microsoft.


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New Windows Blue Announced On Usenet
February 25th, 2013

According to some newsgroup posts, Microsoft and its Windows Blue team are gunning hard to push Windows Blue out by the end of summer. They’re both hoping to get out a public preview for Windows Blue within the coming months. Windows Blue will bring a refresh to the current Windows 8 systems, improving upon things like user experience. It will also jump-start Microsoft’s new, annual and affordable upgrades to its operating system.

One of the major updates with Windows Blue will be the search function. According to Microsoft related USENET newsgroups, the Bing team and the Windows Blue team are working closely together to revamp the search feature in Windows 8. Search results will include more in-depth app integration. An example would be when you search for a movie, there will also be apps that show up in the search result that will allow you to play the movie, or watch a trailer of the movie. Another example would be for music search results, where you will see apps that will allow you to stream the music, download it, or buy it. The app integration feature is similar to the one featured in Firefox OS.

Windows Blue will also feature an upgrade to Internet Explorer. Just like how Internet Explorer was upgraded to version 10 on Windows 8, Windows Blue will be offering the new Internet Explorer 11. It will feature a similar design to Internet Explorer 10, but possibly include many fixes and performance boosts. Microsoft is very determined to make Internet Explorer, who is constantly ridiculed by users, into a usable and lovable browser.

Watch out in the next few months for the public preview of Windows Blue. The new upgrade will improve upon the many features users already love about Windows 8. Within this year as well, Microsoft plans on releasing a Windows Blue upgrade to the Windows Phone 8 devices that will offer improved aesthetics, as well as improved Metro UI apps.

Its still to be determined on how this will affect newsgroup readers and the compatibility they have with this new flavor of Windows. However, there has been no real reports of any issues with existing Windows 7 compatible newsreaders working on the Windows 8 OS currently.


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Tech Pioneer and Newsgroup Subscriber John McCarthy Passes Away
October 27th, 2011

Computer scientist John McCarthy, who is one of the fathers of artificial intelligence and even coined the term, died Sunday at the age of 84.

A pioneer and thought leader in areas such as artificial intelligence and ‘utility computing’, which in many ways maps to the ever popular ‘cloud computing’ offerings of today, John McCarthy’s work has had a significant impact on many aspects of the day to day activities of computer programmers and IT professionals alike, especially those regarding USENET newsgroups.

McCarthy designed the LISP programming language in 1958 while a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Lisp, one of the oldest high-level programming languages second only to Fortran, is still in use today.

Tributes to McCarthy poured in Tuesday, some from posters on Usenet, where McCarthy had an active presence.

McCarthy received the Turing Award in 1971 for his major contributions to the field of AI.

He was born in Boston on September 4, 1927 to an Irish immigrant father and a Lithuanian Jewish immigrant mother.

McCarthy showed an early aptitude for mathematics and he taught himself mathematics by studying the textbooks used at the nearby California Institute of Technology

McCarthy, who retired from Stanford in 2000, was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Sciences.


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New Technology Allows Authorities to View Online History
September 11th, 2011

Launched at the Black Hat 211 security conference and released on Usenet, Offline Windows Analysis and Data Extraction (OWADE) is capable of unlocking files indicating the web history of computers that are operating on Windows.

Elie Bursztein’s team at Stanford University developed the software, which he says will allow authorities working cases involving pedophiles to better track their online and social media activities, allowing them to match a certain suspect to an online identity or alias. Police have access to hard drives, but previously were unable to match online aliases to certain suspects and were unable to access their accounts. “Now, law enforcement organizations can extract information from websites like Facebook to find out,” Bursztein said. “We’ve built a tool that can reconstruct where the user has been online, and what identity they used.”

The technology works by unlocking Microsoft’s encryption, as a great deal of data such as browsing history, site logins and passwords are protected using an algorithm that generates an encryption key. Bursztein and his team figured out how the system works last year, leading to their being the only team in the world able to decrypt this data. They have now decided to make this public.

Of course, with the information made public, those with ill intents may use the information to hide their activity. “If somebody knows what they’re doing with their data, they will try and hide it and work around [solutions like this] as much as they can,” said John Haggerty of the University of Salford, UK according to NewScientist.com.

Usenet has been a platform that many innovators have used to announce their projects and breakthroughs. Through technology newsgroups, many technologically savvy individuals continue to share ideas and information to this day, just as they have for decades on Usenet, which preceded the World Wide Web and was an early way for people to communicate.


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Avoid Exceeding Data Caps and Monitor Usenet Usage
July 29th, 2011

Don’t find yourself having exceeding your online data cap. Make sure that you monitor your online usage, including those from USENET so you’re not hit with those nasty overage charges. You could lose access entirely, so make sure that you know where you are in terms of usage.

First, you could try installing DD-WRT on your router, which will monitor your internet usage automatically. This can be quite convenient as all that’s required is that you check your router’s IP address and click ‘Status’ and then ‘WAN’. A graph should appear at the bottom of the page where you’ll see the bandwidth used each day. You can even get more specific by placing your mouse over the graph for more details.

You can also monitor internet usage on your Mac, Windows or Linux computer by making a few downloads.

Ntop: This may be run on any platform, although its binaries are geared specifically toward Windows and UNIX. You’ll find a detailed overview of the network usage.

SurplusMeter: This may be used for the Mac. It allows you to set a daily cap and you may accumulate surplus usage.

Comcast users may log into their account through the Comcast website to monitor their internet usage. However, some users have not been pleased with its effectiveness.

So to recap, the DD-WRT is the simplest way to go about monitoring your internet usage, although there are other ways to go about it as well. Whatever method you choose, keep up with your internet usage so you don’t run into overage charges or so you’re not cut off from the internet completely.


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What Are Private Newsgroups?
July 11th, 2011

Private newsgroups may contain text and binary messages. With Thundernews.com, you’ll receive access to many private newsgroups so that you may discuss various topics with people from all over the world. Choose from newsgroups like alt.*, games.*, humor.* or music.* with ThunderNews.com  so that you’re able to find what you’re looking for. These private newsgroups are great forums for participating in unique discussions and debates with other users.

Users may also use these private newsgroups to ask questions about topics they’re interested in or hobbies they’re pursuing, or even for research that they’re conducting. Who knows, you may even end up making a new friend or meeting a community of other users who share your same interests. In a lot of ways, that’s what Usenet is all about. You’ll be able to connect with other users who share different points of views or experiences that may shape their ideas or opinions on certain subject matter.

A private newsgroup may be a good forum for sharing binaries or files with others around the world. You may find video, audio or pictures in these binary newsgroups, which can be a good way to gain access to the content you’re interested in. Discussions may also arise from the sharing of these binary files in a group dedicated to discussion of the binary group. You may find people discussing the file being shared or other similar videos, music, etc.

Usenet is very user-driven, so these private newsgroups are what the users make of them. After signing up with Maximum Usenet, you may access the private newsgroups in a couple of ways. You may access the private newsgroup using your internet browser or through a newsreader. ThunderNews.com  even offers a free newsreader to make things easier for our users so they’re able to access Usenet. So stop waiting and give ThunderNews.com a try now!


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ThunerNews Newsreader Picks – June 2010
May 31st, 2010

In the world of Usenet, unless you have a good dependable newsreader, you probably won’t be able to truly access all of the newsgroups available to you.

For the month of June, here are our picks for the most popular newsreaders available for your operating system:

PanUnix/Linux/Ubuntu – Pan is a great newsreader for Unix users. The program is easy to install and also has a good amount of features and capabilities to get everything you can from Usenet.

Asar HogwasherApple – Hogwasher has been around for a while. With its latest 4.3 version, it’s better than ever with a good deal of features without any bloat. It also automates a lot of functions to make your Usenet experience simple and fast.

That’s our roundup. If you have a newsreader you’d like us to consider or review, use our comment system below.


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iMac Newsgroups: 27 inch iMac Crashes Like PC
October 30th, 2009

If you’re one of the first ones that went out to buy Apple’s new 27 inch iMac, you may be experiencing significant performance problems. These problems have been reported on apple newsgroups to take up to 105% CPU usage and freeze many Snow Leopard systems.

Before you go and blame your mac newsreader, be aware that the root of the problem seems to be originating from Flash-based videos. Many of the users in the Apple newsgroups call up the OS Activity Monitor and report that the Flash Player demanded a surprising 114.4 percent of the iMac’s CPU processes when a YouTube or Flash video was playing.

Frustrated iMac owners have suggested a number of unofficial and temporary fixes, including power cycling Apple’s AirPort, triggering the iMac’s sleep\wake cycle, resetting PRAM\NVRAM and re-installing Snow Leopard.

With a recent campaign attacking the new Windows 7 by questioning its reliability, this is the fourth time since the Snow Leopard OS launch that a major problem affecting most of its users has occurred. No official word from Apple to either acknowledge or fix the problem that appears to be wide spread.


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