Applelinks Tech Web Reader - Monday, February 11, 2013

1528
Microsoft Surface Pro vs. MacBook Air
Goodbye Surface RT, hello Surface Pro: I Won't Miss Getting Work Done Again
Apple Notebook Fire Sale Continues With $1,499 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display
Using Dropbox for Version Control and Why Everyone Should Use Dropbox
New Adobe Flash Player Updates Available For OS X Released February 7, 2013
Security Updates Available For Adobe Flash Player
LibreOffice 4.0 Now An Even More Formidable MS Office Alternative
Everything You Need to Know About Your Mac's Hard Drive (Or SSD)




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Microsoft Surface Pro vs. MacBook Air

Gizmag's Will Shanklin compares the specs. and other features of the Microsoft Surface Pro and MacBook Air, and finds that in many respects the two diminutive takes on an ultra-small but reasonably powerful and full-featured portable PC are remarkably similar. The reviewers note that although Surface Pro is essentially an Ultrabook in a tablet's body, and most customers are consequently going to look at it as an iPad competitor, Microsoft's professional tablet PC is arguably more comparable to a MacBook Air than it is to Apple's iPad.

The 11.6" MacBook Air is of course larger than the Surface Pro in all dimensions, and heavier, but in terms of specs. has the same Core i5 CPU, the same 4 GB of RAM, the same 64GB and 128GB SSD capacities, roughly the same battery life, and while the Surface Pro nominally starts at $!00 less than the MacBook Air, adding the keyboard cover that nearly every user will want makes it $20 or $30 more expensive for a 64 GB model. The Surface Pro actually has a higher-resolution display than the MacBook Air.

Gizmag says Surface Pro comes out of this comparo looking much lot better than it did against the iPad, noting that as a tablet, it's beefy, expensive, and has crappy battery life, but when compared to a laptop, it holds its own in all of those categories.

If Microsoft communicates to customers that Surface is the coolest, most versatile laptop ever made, it has a chance to make a splash. If Redmond pitches it a tablet, they might have trouble. It will be fascinating to see how this plays out in the market.

For the full review visit here:
http://goo.gl/vNEJe






Goodbye Surface RT, hello Surface Pro: I Won't Miss Getting Work Done Again

ZNet's Matthew Miller says he liked his Microsoft Surface RT device, but after a recent two-day trip he I realized he does need access to a full Windows computer while on the road, and is planning to pick up the Surface Pro.

After finding things he simply couldn't do on the Surface RT, or an iPad, he's convinced the Microsoft Surface Pro is perfect for his requirements. He says that while an Apple computer is not an option for his work as a professional engineer (naval architect), he dies use one at home for writing and other tasks, and while he could pick up a MacBook Air for around the same price as a Surface Pro, then he would have to get Windows installed on it, and if he just needs a computer for writing, he can pick up an inexpensive Chromebook.

He plans to pass along his 2009 MacBook Pro to his wife and use the Surface Pro as my his home computer with an external monitor, and that while there are a number of Windows 8 laptop and tablet options, he hasn't seen any as light, well designed, and compelling as the Surface Pro.

For the full commentary visit here:
http://goo.gl/SZe4t






Apple Notebook Fire Sale Continues With $1,499 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display

Appleinsider's Katie Marsal reports:

The entry-level price for an Apple MacBook Pro with Retina display has been unofficially slashed by $200 to just $1,499, as the company continues to work with its indirect sales channel to push units on the back of a lackluster quarter for Mac sales in genera
l.

For the full report visit here:
http://goo.gl/gnlnO






Using Dropbox for Version Control and Why Everyone Should Use Dropbox

Macinstruct's Matthew Cone says:

Dropbox is a popular cloud storage service that magically moves files from one device to another, but it's probably not the first name that comes to mind when you think of version control. However, as you'll learn in this tutorial, Dropbox has several powerful features that allow you "undo" any changes you make to files saved in your Dropbox folder. This is an absolute necessity for those of us who use Dropbox to store critically important files that can be accidentally modified or deleted.

Why Everyone Should Use Dropbox

First, let's talk about Dropbox and why you should use it. This should go without saying, but in a world where people spend days or even weeks working on digital projects, data loss is simply not an option. You can't afford to lose days of work. But if you're still saving files to your Mac's hard drive, you're leaving the storage of your documents to chance.

If you aren't using Dropbox or a service like it, you should create a free Dropbox account and start using it immediately. After you've installed Dropbox on your computer, you can use it to store your most important files. Dropbox will automatically store the files on your Mac's hard drive and the Dropbox cloud servers.... If Dropbox's servers failed, you would still have the files on your Mac's hard drive. And if your Mac is stolen or its hard drive crashes, the files will still be stored on Dropbox's servers. For your own sake, I hope you agree that using Dropbox is a no-brainer!


[I agree Ed.]

You can check it out at:
http://www.macinstruct.com/node/516






New Adobe Flash Player Updates Available For OS X Released February 7, 2013

Adobe Flash Player updates are available from Apple Support that address a recently identified Adobe Flash Player web plug-in vulnerability.

Products Affected
Mac OS X 10.6, OS X Lion, OS X Mountain Lion

When attempting to view Flash content in Safari, you may see this alert: "Blocked Plug-in"

Selecting it will display this alert:

image


"Adobe Flash Player" is out of date.

Click "Download Flash" to have Safari open the Adobe Flash Player installer website.

image


Download the latest Adobe Flash Player installer--click the "Download now" button.

Open the downloaded disk image.

Open the installer and follow the onscreen instructions.

For more information, visit:
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5655






Security Updates Available For Adobe Flash Player

Adobe has released security updates for Adobe Flash Player 11.5.502.146 and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh, Adobe Flash Player 11.2.202.261 and earlier versions for Linux, Adobe Flash Player 11.1.115.36 and earlier versions for Android 4.x, and Adobe Flash Player 11.1.111.31 and earlier versions for Android 3.x and 2.x. These updates address vulnerabilities that could cause a crash and potentially allow an attacker to take control of the affected system.

Adobe is aware of reports that CVE-2013-0633 is being exploited in the wild in targeted attacks designed to trick the user into opening a Microsoft Word document delivered as an email attachment which contains malicious Flash (SWF) content. The exploit for CVE-2013-0633 targets the ActiveX version of Flash Player on Windows.

Adobe is also aware of reports that CVE-2013-0634 is being exploited in the wild in attacks delivered via malicious Flash (SWF) content hosted on websites that target Flash Player in Firefox or Safari on the Macintosh platform, as well as attacks designed to trick Windows users into opening a Microsoft Word document delivered as an email attachment which contains malicious Flash (SWF) content.

Adobe recommends users update their product installations to the latest versions:

Users of Adobe Flash Player 11.5.502.146 and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh should update to Adobe Flash Player 11.5.502.149.

Users of Adobe Flash Player 11.2.202.261 and earlier versions for Linux should update to Adobe Flash Player 11.2.202.262.
Flash Player installed with Google Chrome will automatically be updated to the latest Google Chrome version, which will include Adobe Flash Player 11.5.31.139 for Windows, Macintosh and Linux.

Flash Player installed with Internet Explorer 10 for Windows 8 will automatically be updated to the latest version of Internet Explorer 10, which will include Adobe Flash Player 11.3.379.14 for Windows.

Users of Adobe Flash Player 11.1.115.36 and earlier versions on Android 4.x devices should update to Adobe Flash Player 11.1.115.37.

Users of Adobe Flash Player 11.1.111.31 and earlier versions for Android 3.x and earlier versions should update to Flash Player 11.1.111.32.

AFFECTED SOFTWARE VERSIONS

Adobe Flash Player 11.5.502.146 and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh
Adobe Flash Player 11.2.202.261 and earlier versions for Linux
Adobe Flash Player 11.1.115.36 and earlier versions for Android 4.x
Adobe Flash Player 11.1.111.31 and earlier versions for Android 3.x and 2.x
To verify the version of Adobe Flash Player installed on your system, access the About Flash Player page, or right-click on content running in Flash Player and select "About Adobe (or Macromedia) Flash Player" from the menu. If you use multiple browsers, perform the check for each browser you have installed on your system.

To verify the version of Adobe Flash Player for Android, go to Settings > Applications > Manage Applications > Adobe Flash Player x.x.

SOLUTION

Adobe recommends users update their software installations by following the instructions below:

Adobe recommends users of Adobe Flash Player 11.5.502.146 and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh update to the newest version 11.5.502.149 by downloading it from the Adobe Flash Player Download Center. Users of Flash Player 11.2.x or later for Windows and users of Flash Player 11.3.x for Macintosh who have selected the option to 'Allow Adobe to install updates' will receive the update automatically. Users who do not have the 'Allow Adobe to install updates' option enabled can install the update via the update mechanism within the product when prompted.
For users of Flash Player 10.3.183.50 and earlier versions for Windows and Macintosh, who cannot update to Flash Player 11.5.502.149, Adobe has made available the update Flash Player 10.3.183.51, which can be downloaded here.
Adobe recommends users of Adobe Flash Player 11.2.202.261 and earlier versions for Linux update to Adobe Flash Player 11.2.202.262 by downloading it from the Adobe Flash Player Download Center.

For users of Flash Player 10.3.183.50 and earlier versions for Linux, who cannot update to Flash Player 11.2.202.262, Adobe has made available the update Flash Player 10.3.183.51.

Flash Player installed with Google Chrome will automatically be updated to the latest Google Chrome version, which will include Adobe Flash Player 11.5.31.139 for Windows, Macintosh and Linux.

For more information, visit:
https://www.adobe.com/support/security/bulletins/apsb13-04.html






LibreOffice 4.0 Now An Even More Formidable MS Office Alternative

The Register's Neil McAllister notes that The Document Foundation has announced LibreOffice 4.0, the latest version of the free software competitor to Microsoft Office that spun off from the OpenOffice.org effort in 2010, describing it as nothing less than "the free office suite the community has been dreaming of since 2001," "with a cleaner and leaner code base, an improved set of features, better interoperability, and a more diverse and inclusive ecosystem," according to the Document Foundation's Italo Vignoli in a blog post.

Among other improvements, version 4.0 is more compatible with Microsoft's Rich Text Format (RTF) and DOCX file formats the latter being the XML-based Word document format first introduced in Office 2007.

For the full report visit here:
http://goo.gl/g02Yo






Everything You Need to Know About Your Mac's Hard Drive (Or SSD)

Mac.Tuts+'s Ian Spence says:

Hard drives: they are one of the most important pieces of hardware in your computer, and also the source of most problems you will encounter. The hard drive is where all the data on your computer is stored, so when it stops working it can be a bit scary. In this tutorial, I will go over how a hard drive works, how to fix common hard drive problems, and end with a discussion on filesystems and how to use them.


You can check it out at:
http://goo.gl/5FzpH



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