We have a number of high profile gaming events throughout the year. Gamescom is arguably the biggest of these, with 345,000+ visitors visiting the 500+ exhibitions on show every August, this is an event which rivals even E3. If you can’t make it to LA for E3 this year, Gamescom in Germany makes for a much cheaper option, and often brings more information on the games which were unveiled back in June. If you’re planning a trip to Gamescom this year, here’s what you should be looking out for, and looking to bring with you. [Read more…]
As geeks, we’re known to be early tech adopters – and this makes us an ideal demographic for new products trying to carve out a consumer market. That makes it especially important to be an educated consumer, but even so, there are some products that are so geeky, we just have to have them.
One sector that’s totally grabbed our fascination is green technology. And when it comes to eco-friendly tech that coincides with other nerd favorites – phone apps, video games, and superheroes – we just can’t say no. [Read more…]
Let’s admit it. There’s something to be said about the stereotypical nerd who is not exactly the most socially adept person. There are always exceptions, of course – and people who would want to club me in the head for admitting to the reality stereotype.
But, going to comic cons (which are going mainstream, according to the “real” nerds), LARPing, tabletop gaming, and other similar events is another story. Many of us would not hesitate to go – or at least want to go. [Read more…]
We all have our defining inherent characteristics, but we also have accessories that become part of our identity somehow.
There are the superheroes whose accessories make them who they are, and there is iconic eyewear that we associate with specific celebrities.
You probably have a few people (fictional or not) in mind already, but here’s an infographic showcasing famous eyewear from movies, TV shows, and pop culture in general. [Read more…]
Whatever you may think of the Ghostbusters now being women, I think I wouldn’t be wrong in saying that Slimer remains a constant. And that you wouldn’t mind having him around you. Gross he may be, he holds a special place in our hearts. [Read more…]
A couple of months ago, while my lungs were killing me as I rode the exercise bike, my 4-year-old nephew gazed up at the night sky and started asking my questions about the galaxy.
What is the galaxy?
What is in the galaxy?
Are we in the galaxy?
How about our car?
I tried to defer the “A” part of the Q&A, panting like a dog, saying that I had to finish exercising.
The kid’s reply? “Stop exercising. Let’s talk about the galaxy instead.” [Read more…]
Do you think your nerd cave is under surveillance by spies? Are you secretly building a time machine and afraid that someone might steal your blueprints? Privacy is a priority for every tech lover. Today, there are entities out there who’re after your personal information – be it online marketers, hackers, or even government agents. Thanks to the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2015 – infamously dubbed as “CISA” – agencies like the NSA and FBI can freely monitor your online activities with the help of your ISP.
Why Does It Matter?
You may not be a super-villain secretly planning to take over the city (or the world). But you most likely have information you’d like to keep private. Your passwords, credit card information, browsing history, chats; nothing is safe without setting up the proper security measures. No, we’re not talking about using proxies, installing an antivirus, or going incognito. We’re talking about setting up an impenetrable, military-grade security.
Encryption holds the key to achieving this, and you’ll need a couple of tools to get started. First, let’s make sure all your online conversations are kept secret. There are currently two popular encryption methods being used: Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) and Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC).
PGP may not have a fancy name like ECC, but it’s worth mentioning that it’s been developing for over 25 years and it has never been cracked. PGP works with a pair of keys for each user – a public key for receiving and a private key for decrypting messages. On top of these, each message is encrypted with a “session key” that’s generated randomly every time. On the contrary, ECC is basically the newer version of public-key cryptography meant to replace the RSA (Rivest-Shamir-Adleman).
Using Encrypted Messages
Today, there is a growing number of secure messaging and email tools that utilize either ECC or PGP encryption. You can easily take advantage of PGP for emails with the following steps:
Step 1: Install a Desktop Email Client
Step 2: Install GNU Privacy Guard
You will need GPG to generate your public and private encryption keys. You’re going to need GPGTools for OS X and GPG4Win for Windows.
Step 3: Install the Enigmail Extension
Enigmail is a security extension you need for your desktop email clients. Remember that you need the appropriate extension for Thunderbird and for Postbox.
Step 4: Configure PGP
Make sure to restart your mail client after installing Enigmail. When done, access the “OpenPGP” menu item and find “Key Management”. When setting up for the first time, you need to generate your keys by choosing “New Keypair”. Choose the email account you want to use PGP with and then assign a passphrase. When done, go ahead and click “Generate Key”.
Step 5: Setup a Failsafe
After Step 4, you will be asked to generate a revocation certificate. This can be used to devoid your public key should your private key get compromised. Also choose “Export Keys to File” from the
OpenPGP menu to create a backup of your keys.
Step 6: Encrypt Your Messages
You can now sign and encrypt messages from the OpenPGP menu. You can do this whenever you compose a new message. You will be asked for your passphrase each time. When done, you can
watch the magic happens as your message turns into an encrypted mess – super spy style!
A Word of Warning for ECC Apps
While PGP can be used for free, you mostly have to rely on “Secure Messaging Apps” if you want to use ECC. Just be careful when using an ECC-based messenger as they may not be as secure as advertised. One particular (and controversial example) is the SkyECC self-destruct feature malfunction where a sender has no control on how messages can be remotely destroyed. You can take a look at the video below to learn more.
Furthermore, most ECC providers abide by standards endorsed by the US National Institute of Standards and Technology. Sure – a federal intelligence agency prescribing encryption parameters?
Now that sounds convincing. We don’t want this article to be too technical, but there’s enough reason to believe that the NSA has backdoored the curve generator being used by their standards.
You now know how to encrypt your online conversations – great! But how can you protect your data from people who have access to your computer? An elegant solution would be a tool known as VeraCrypt, which can be used to encrypt an entire partition or drive. Another great tool to encrypt and protect information would be 7-Zip – a free compression utility
We all have those embarrassing tech moments. You know, the ones where we think we know more about technology than we do, and it winds up getting us in trouble. Whether you’re gaming online all night and accidentally text a cheat to your arch nemesis instead of your best friend, or delete a document you desperately needed for work, knowing how to undo some embarrassing moments could be a life saver. [Read more…]
What do you get when an artist loves both Disney and Hayao Miyazaki? Some of the awesomest mashups you’ve seen. They’re not the usual mashups in that characters from one world are put together in one piece, but the style and technique of the artist makes these mashups a sight for sore eyes.
Amanda Lee uses color pencils to draw characters, and the process is quite painstaking due to the details. She showcases her work on Instagram, and here are a couple which will make you do a double-take. [Read more…]
I’ve always thought that “myth” is a relative term. Who’s to say that mythological creatures don’t exist and we just haven’t seen them today? Or that they exist in another dimension? If you don’t agree with me, as Bigfoot chasers…
Now, I’m not sure if artist Hannah McGill has seen any mythological creatures, but her Reverse Mythological Illustrations are something to behold. [Read more…]