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Freedom Scientific® Introduces ElBraille
A cutting-edge, extremely portable Braille computer
(St. Petersburg, Florida – March 01, 2017)
Freedom Scientific® today introduced ElBraille, running Microsoft Windows® 10 and JAWS 18, the ElBraille is the newest portable computing solution for the blind and the logical next step in notetaker development. The ElBraille-14 and ElBraille-40 use JAWS® 18 to provide speech and braille output and JAWS’ BrailleIn feature to allow complete control of the ElBraille computer from the Perkins-style, braille keyboard. The Windows ® operating environment is the standard in education and professional settings. Run Windows applications such as the Microsoft Office suite or Adobe Reader for complete access to all mainstream document and file types. Use accessibility applications and accessories such as OpenBook® (printed text to speech and braille software) with the PEARL® Camera to immediately read classroom texts or meeting and lecture handouts.
Running the latest Windows operating system on an Intel Atom quad core processor, with 160 GB of internal memory and 2 GB RAM, and incorporating either the Focus 14 or 40 Blue Braille Display, and JAWS 18, the ElBraille is the logical choice for anyone who wants to raise notetaking and portable, accessible computing to the highest level.
“It makes sense to use a device which completely supports mainstream applications, such as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook,” says Brad Davis, Vice President of Hardware Product Management at Freedom Scientific. “Adding Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and cellular connectivity with up to 20 hours battery life makes the ElBraille a real productivity powerhouse,” says Brad Davis.
The ElBraille-14 is scheduled to go on sale in the US and Canada in the second quarter of 2017 with the ElBraille-40 following soon after.
About VFO™ and Freedom Scientific®
VFO™ is a leading global assistive technology provider for the visually impaired. The VFO™ brands have a long history of developing and providing innovative solutions for blind and low vision individuals, helping them to reach their full potential.
Freedom Scientific®, one of the VFO™ brands, is the leading worldwide provider of assistive technology products for those with vision impairments. The Company sells its products worldwide and has offices in Florida and Switzerland. The Company’s products have been translated into 24 languages and are available in 55 countries. Freedom Scientific® also has a line of software products for those with learning disabilities.
Freedom Scientific® and JAWS® are registered trademarks in the United States and/or other countries. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
We invite you to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
VFO™, 11800 31st Court North, St. Petersburg, FL 33716-1805
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I saw two articles from Last Pass recently, and it seems as though the bug is repaired. Two Security Bulletins: SHA-1 Collision Attack and Cloudflare Incident posted on the 24th and Alerts for Cloudflare Sites in LastPass Security Challenge which was posted on the 27th of this month. Lastpass can be trusted on getting this type of information out accurately, and I trust that the issue has been fixed and nothing is at risk unless it is cached. Check these out.
Update: Fixed a broken link for the first story. Also, this was discussed on SN 601. Sorry about that!
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I saw this article on Herbie’s facebook. The world’s first braille smartwatch is on its way to buyers is the name of the article. According to Herbie, its about $300 and this does sound interesting. Check this one out.
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I saved a link to a video, which unfortunately, I can’t download. How To Avoid Becoming the Next Big Phishing Headline is the article, and it should be checked out. The video is free to watch.
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This is only some of what I’ve been reading in the tech world this past week.
How to Bury a Major Breach Notification February 21, 2017 Krebs On Security
The Healthcare Underground: Electronic Health Records for Sale February 21, 2017 Trend Micro
RAMNIT: The Comeback Story of 2016 February 20, 2017 trend micro
Shooting Gallery: A Breakdown of Phishing Targets in 2016 February 21, 2017 Phishlabs
Fake apps, fake games: An update on gaming malware February 23, 2017 Trend Micro
Hope you’ll find something of interest to read.
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On our RSS feed, you’ll find the podcast. Its numbered 256. Here’s the show notes on it, and I hope you enjoy the show! See you next time.
Welcome to the technology blog and podcast, this is podcast 256. On this podcast, we have 7 different segments for you including vocal thoughts on the AI squared issue, which one of my helpers of the blog sent an E-mail on. Be sure to read my post before podcast 255’s release entitled Making sure we give out accurate information for the reading of my thoughts. The Transit App has a function where you can put in intersections. I demonstrate that as part of segment 2. Segments 3 and 4 introduce and talk about a video where someone talks about the top ten tweets that could get you fired from your job. Segment 5 was quite interesting as I demonstrate a game Super Tile Smash app directory entry (apple vis) and they are listening. They posted a thread on Apple vis entitled: Our new game Super Tile Smash Forum post (apple Vis) ofr you to comment on. Segment 6 is news notes where i have some quick mention on what is on the blog that might be of interest. Since I haden’t posted in awhile, I even have some news notes from the prior week where I find after the fact some articles I’ve already commented on. Finally, a segment with some additional comments made to me in regards to Super Tile Smash via E-mail and contact information. I hope you’ll enjoy the program as much as I have putting it together for you. The program is an hour and a half long, and I’ll definitely see you on another edition of the podcast. See you soon!
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Hello folks, I was tipped off to this Roger posting entitled What we’ve been up to: Project Fika and it talks about Rogertalk closing March 15, 2017 in exchange for a business platform called Fika. I know from reading the release here that it will include video and other business related things to get things done, similar to whats already out there. Sometimes, companies need to focus their attention to things that make money, as they need to stay afloat.
I liked roger for its security aspect within the app. While I was told they use straight mp3 files when using something like IFTT, the app itself was garnered very secure, and this is because no telephone numbers were ever needed. The thing I don’t like about whats app is the fact you need to associate your number, and unless the number is in everyone’s contacts, everyone sees this information. I do not personally want to give my cell phone number out publically, although i have done it occasionally for people having whats app, I only announced it once, and left it at that.
This must have been a hard decision for the company, although, people may have complained too much about things the blocking feature should’ve taken care of, so they got tired of it. The blind community wine too much when we have something good a company is offering, but it would not surprise me if it was both, a company decision, driven by false abuse compalints solved by people complaining aabout name calling, etc. which people are doing in this community.
Roger, you’ll be missed. Sorry to see you go.
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Some of the articles are already here, but here are some of the other things I’ve read as of late.
- Who Ran Leakedsource.com? Krebs on security
- This site as I was just curious what was there now, says it is down for maintenance or unavailable. I read Kreb’s article earlier on Feb 15, and it is a good one. I didn’t cover this in news notes, for the next upcoming podcast, however, Krebs always does a good job with these. Guess we’ll find out more later.
- This article caught my attention because it talks about web hosting services, and a number of places that have unix as a platform and how actors can take advantage of things to do a number of things to the computer including making it useless for its task.
- These two articles talk about the same thing, and i cover this in my news notes for the upcoming podcast. This is definitely of interest because of the fact that a huge number of devices can be potentially targeted because some aspects of the devices are public facing either by design, or by mistake. For those who don’t know, Shodan is a site similar to google, but they analyse ports and whats out there, where Google indexes web sites in general. The research is interesting, and an eye opener.
- This is a big ransomware headache, and what I read today from this article absolutely scares me. Two things stick out in regards to this article. First, it says it doesn’t toucch the program data, it only encrypts your files. It also says it checks three times for antivirus software. From my understand of reading these articles, ransomware won’t let you do anything else until you pay up, so your antivirus or other security software is useless. I wonder why they did this?
- RDP was talked about on Security Now, I don’t remember exactly what it does, but this definitely sounds bad. Are there better things to do?
- Finally, as we haven’t had enough with this ransomware, and now that the code is out, its only going to get worse. This is the next thing coming, where it can plant more stuff to worry about. This can’t get worse, can it?
If you have any comments on these, fire away. I’ll have more later.
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I read today an article entitled Mirai Widens Distribution with New Trojan that Scans More Ports and it was very interesting how this bot has just morphed in to something that can just cause havoc. Sometimes, releasing source code can be a good thing, but in this case, it is for all bad. This is something probably good for the security community at the time it was done, but now, who knows what else can happen. If we were to defend from this, how would we be doing this successfully?
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On the 6th of February, Top 10 Spammer Indicted for Wire Fraud was published, and I always love covering news that is great. We need good news after reading about really bad breaches we have no control over. Check out the good news here.
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Hello folks, on February 9th, I saw this post from Krebs on Security entitled Fast Food Chain Arby’s Acknowledges Breach but I honestly don’t remember ever reading anything initial from the blog talking about it. I can’t blame myself because i read so much stuff. There are links to other similar breaches including Wendies which then confirmed the breach two months later. I don’t remember ever eating at the chain called Arby’s, but it would be comparable to something like subway from what I know of it, or similar to a delli.
In any case, this can’t be good for consumers, as if you went back after getting your card replaced, the cycle starts all over again. We know this happened after the target and wendies breaches. It would have been more on wendies than target, but it is still a problem today. As consumers, we need to figure out how we can hold companies accountable for these types of activities. If you have constructive thoughts, I’d love to hear from you.
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On the 6th of February, I saw this article entitled InterContinental Confirms Breach at 12 Hotels which reminds me of the multiple trump hotel breaches. While this story indicates that trump hotels acknowledged the breaches, I honestly don’t remember this as part of reading them back then. Here is the first story and here is the second one. If you read that there was confirmation, please let me know, as I don’t remember reading that they confirmed anything.
This story also has stories dealing with other breaches the blog covered from the past year. This hopefully will slow down, at least I hope they do, as there are better things to do than cover breaches which is why the podcast slowed down, but since it picked up, we need to be vigelant about this.
This story goes in to detail on what happens, so please take a look.
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Shaun sent this article entitled Fashion company’s rude response shock s job applicant on the 27th of January. I’m getting a chance to read this, but there is a difference between a breach and a hack. The fact that the company apologized is a first step on fixing something which should never happen in the first place when looking for a mjob. The applicant, according to the article, had plenty of experience and a finished schooling and deploma to top it all off. That is definitely going to be a public nightmare for this company.
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In the catching up department, I remember this story well, in fact, this was one of these stories where great thought was put in to this from what i can tell. How Google Took on Mirai, KrebsOnSecurity goes in to the detail on how this great resource that has tipped me off in to the enourmous breaches we’ve been seeing lately and how i was made aware of them thanks to Krebs. The botnet in question has been covered in great length by Security Now as well as Kreb’s blog. Check out this one.
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Extremely dissatisfied with the developers of tweetbot in regards to accessibility improvement promises
Hi folks, in the Mac world, accessibility is still a concern just as in the windows world. While I’m not a full time mac user, and I’ve dabbled in this world a little bit, I came across this apple vis post from a mac user about an app which is accessible for the most part. Contacting the developer yielded mixed results and comments are asking for far and wide coverage of the fact the developer doesn’t seem to care about whether their app works. Why would an app be accessible but yet it can’t read the names of the people tweeting? The windows apps I’ve used have done this, so I know its possible. Please contact this developer if you use the app and let them know your concerns. This is not acceptable, and if I used an app that way, I’d write them just like the folks in this thread have done.
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Hi folks, I’m happy to release the podcast numbered 255. Below, you’ll find the show notes. I hope you’ll enjoy Find the file on our RSS feed where the show notes also live.
Welcome to the technology podcast, this is podcast 255. On this edition of the podcast, we start with an interesting Uber find, as I was curious on whether they allowed us to book a trip in advanced. I take you through a demo, and you may read more about the cities that Uber supports by going to this page which asks: Can I make a reservation? You may also go to the page that talks about Scheduled Rides s
for extra peace of mind as it gives you the list of cities involved. Our news notes segments are making a comeback. Next, wetalk about Alexa and something cool. Finally, Freshbooks has some new features to help improve your security in regards to authenticating with Freshbooks, and they publish their security Review. To read more, check their Freshbook’s Security and Reliability Safeguards which allows you to read more about their policies. We hope you enjoy this hour long podcast, and thanks for listening!
See you soon!
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Hello folks, I hope you’re enjoying the blog, and I’ll be releasing a podcast real soon, it just needs to be finalized. Today, while I have thought about this post, I’m going to be upfront, and as accurate as possible.
Remember in January when we published Urgent issue with AI squared access technology and the page in question had support hours over the weekend to help people through the issue they said was urgent and that things were compromised? Well, it isn’t that bad to begin with, according to what I found out today.
My actual call to the VFO group was totally unrelated to this, but when the gentleman said to go to the certificate fix page, I told him why I was calling and that I had installed Window-Eyes to this PC already but the issue i was calling about needed a full installation zip file.
He told me that the people who needed to help me were gone, and I thanked him, I happened to ask him about the whole certificate fix issue we encountered since he braught it up.
The gentleman said there was never a compromise at all. They had published it was compromised, but the cert in question was only expired, never compromised. I asked why they put it was compromised, because that means things more serious, and he said it was simply mislabeled.
When enquiring on whether they were to fix it, he indicated they wouldn’t because it was a long time ago.
If I was running the page, I would have personally changed it, and released a new press release indicating this.
With the amount of breaches that we have on a monthly basis, it is very important that companies get as much information out there, and if it changes, update it.
I’ll release an article I read via Krebs that actually impressed me, and I’ll talk about that more in debth, as it deals with a particular breach and links to others. I’m surprised that AI Squared did not update this page to simply state that it was expiring, and made it sound like something extreme was going on when it was just an expired cert which was expiring on the date mentioned, and they were patching everyone before it expired.
If the certificate was truly compromised, we would have to patch immediately, and the certificate would be immediately revoked. If we were running the software, we’d be OK, but if we rebooted, we could be in trouble.
AI Squared, please make sure you put the accurate information next time, so that people are not confused like I was. I didn’t think it was compromised, and E-mails asking whether it was, was told to look at the Cert page they published. That page seemed to not make me pleased since the deadline was a week or so away, but yet, compromised certs are revoked immediately upon discovery if I have been paying to Security Now’s teachings. Bad move, AI Squared, please learn from this next time.
I was told the cert is good for awhile yet, so there should not be a problem for at least 20 years.
Thanks for reading, and make it a great day.
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This article from stuff
Is an interesting read.
In brief, is discussed how yung is to yung to have a smart device.
Firstly I don’t share the opinions of the artical writer fully but
partly agree with it all the same.
I will respond to this article with one of my own.
My question dear readers is not if children or teens should get access
to phones but should children and teens get access to the net.
No lets go even further should some adults be banned from using the net
or cellphones entirely.
We all know how cool technology is, social networks, blogs like this
one, twitter, facebook, calls overseas with skype, free services like
vibre, whatsapp, group shares, cloud services like mega, dropbox google
drive, calendars like the google one, diaries, scheduals, games,
research, net searches, the list goes on.
We also know about the down sides of technology.
No, these are not hackers, viruses, malware, ransomware, and all that,
its deeper than being hacked or getting your identity stolen.
No, its worse than that.
Let me ask you a simple question, how many times over the last 10 years
have you played a board game, played cards, gone out side and played any
games at all, socialised with friends, not got stressed because the net
has gone down, etc, and if your answer is not for ages if ever you are
probably close to the truth.
It is known that we use our devices to much.
Our activity has reduced.
Our wish to take risks has reduced to, we are scared to break something.
We need our mail and the net.
If the net goes down we are at a loss.
For those born pre net era life was different.
For those born post net we know no other.
The fact just about anyone can use a computer is a blessing and a curse
for when it breaks we are almost powerless to fix it and this trend will
continue on and on.
Crimes asside, and the usual rifraff I write on here this article got me
thinking and thinking hard about a time before I had access to the net.
That time for me was at the end of the 80s, and the 90s up through till
the revolution in 2002.
I remember playing board games with my family, children playing outside
in the street, games on games.
Sure there was tv, but it had its place.
Research required you to physically do it, if you had something to do,
you either called for it on a normal phone, or got out of the house to
You had friends, real friends, and you talked or wrote as the case may be.
You got on with things because you knew you had to.
Even when computers really came out they had their place.
I can’t say I watch much tv even though I have a pre smart 24 inch job.
Even though its got audio description on.
I do have dvds but don
‘t watch to much.
I have drives full of files but I never sit to much and listen all day
if I can help it.
I try vary hard to ballence my life on the pc and off it.
I don’t use a modern smart phone nore care for one just yet.
I see several issues with our world.
1. computers are everywhere.
We are getting on them to quickly, from our humble consoles to that
latest ipod everything has them.
They are cool, and they rock, but we have forgotten their place.
We are not to far from becoming dependent on technology but there is
still enough time if we move there are still a couple older generations
left to teach the new.
The following things need to happen in my mind.
1. children should not have computers or smart phones or any
electronics to be honest.
They should play outside, break legs and other things as they used to do.
I have never broken a leg in my life but no one has the choice anymore.
All the health laws mean people are so worried of being sued that we all
sink into a non risky weak state.
2. a computer should be shown to a teen or those at school as a
research tool, first, secondly a gaming one, and only for the moment
educational games and maybe old style video games.
3. once you are at the age you can vote or drink whatever is later,
that will be the age you can be left to do whatever till then strict
rules should be in place to stop people going online not knowing the risks.
Playing on your devices is fine but being more interested in them than
real world is not.
Its why on holiday I force myself to leave my computer at home and not
I do take a recorder or a music player with recording facilities, a
camera is also good to.
Maybe a note book if you are able to see to write in and a diary there
are still paper ones round the place.
I don’t know how we’d block this, but all those violent games and such
while fun just are no good for children.
Heck adds for games games in general are no good.
Twitter and other things are no good for children, in fact once they
master a life outside the machine realm, then by all means introduce
them to it.
We are creating people that never have been outside and have almost no
need for it.
And before you judge, I do have family that are locked to their devices
all the time all day long and not using them as was intended.
I have a friend recently dead who was an impulse buyer.
He brought lots and lots of stuff of and online.
He is dead!
He can’t take all his stuff to heaven with him, most of it is unused,
and what do you do.
While some of his stuff can be sold for little cash, most of it is not
interesting for the people that have to deal with it.
So it will all go to landfill.
His house is junk, it is in agood ariea but it will be destined to
become another monster apartment block like everything else.
This guy has no legacy, his wife still alive languishes in a home with
almost no cash and not much to show for her past life.
Granted this is an extreme case, but is this what we want for future
To start, live on material things and then it all goes poof and no more?
True our digital identities will remain till hackers take them and we
are kicked off the net entirely but our ghosts even digital ones are not
alive, text is no substitute for communication and those people on our
twitter and facebook accounts are not our friends.
The people you email well some of them may be your friends sort of as
well as those on social networks.
But if you die, you have nothing to remember you by or only an aspect to
remember you by.
The only differences from real buildings and those constructed online as
that they never age.
Nice isn’t it, but what about if not only do they never age, they never
Or more simple terms, if you have an online house it never gets older,
its always sunny, the food in the fridge never goes off, its never eaten
in fact its only an idea of food.
You never get older, but neither do you have a past.
You never sleep but then you don’t have much of a life either.
True, you can game, play music, socialise, chat, go on dates, have sex,
Watch tv, read the news paper.
You can never break a leg, drive, eat, sleep, get sick, die, physically
touch, or talk as such.
You are not a name, a person, just a user id, a link, an ip, you are not
black or white, have no religion, aren’t much at all.
Thats all well and good.
But the net has connections to the outside.
We mirror the net, the net mirrors us, but there are differences in the
There is no crime on the net but there are no laws either.
There are no police on the net but its not like you can do any crime
online that doesn’t have an offline exit.
You could hire a murderer but never be killed online.
You could steal someones identity, infect someone’s computer with a
virus, but you couldn’t do much if you stayed online.
You are imortal but time never moves.
You are but you aren’t at the same time.
Thats all well and good but as I said everything in the net has a hard
If you do a crime online it will eventually link outside so no escape.
Things do change outside the net and as soon as things leave the net
they are subject to our universe and its rules.
We are forgetting where we sit in the big machine.
We don’t sit anywhere in the big machine, we are part of it but we are
still linked outside of it so we aren’t at the same time.
Fact is the world emulates the net and the net emulates the world except
So this all means in short that we are becoming more interested in the
online than offline world.
We are not machines yet, and that means we need equal access to both.
And if we continue as we are, then we will find out just how useless and
insubstancial our ghosts are.
If we lose our hard links we are nothing.
I know future movies and scifi likes to have humans in some cases not
needing boddies ever, and that we are big minds, etc but lets face it,
we forget about the outside then we may as well live in the sun for all
it will do us.
I think everyone needs to decide where they slot in instead of jumping
on the bandwaggon.
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Hacker Selling 126 Million Cell Phone Details of “U.S. Cellular” Customers is an interesting story. The update at the bottom says that it isn’t U.S. Cellular data, but if you read it closely, it could be. I’m not going to pay the 500 plus dollars to find out, but it is scary just the same. Wonder if it could be former data, meaning the data comes from customers who may have left for any reason?
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TEXAS COPS LOSE EVIDENCE GOING BACK EIGHT YEARS IN RANSOMWARE ATTACK is a week old, but yet we still have cases out there and we will continue to have them. The fact that they thought they had backups but found them to be encrypted mean that they didn’t do a good job. I personally feel that if you think you’ll get your files back, pay, then learn to do more to protect yourself. If you feel that you may not get your stuff, then don’t pay.
This reminds me of the school case at the beginning of the year I reported. In that case, they felt that they had a shot of getting their stuff back. The article indicates that that they were told they didn[‘t have a shot. Wonder what the difference between this and the other case besides of the fact it deals with police departments and a server holding evidence?
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