Businesses are typically well within their rights to install software that monitors company-owned computers and reports back to IT with details on exactly what employees are doing on the company’s dime. There’s nothing wrong with spending a few minutes here and there checking out the latest status updates from your Facebook (FB) friends or the latest tech news here on BGR, but some employers might not agree. Of course the safest play is to keep personal browsing and chats on your smartphone, but there are also several ways to determine whether or not your computer is being monitored. More →
When users found out that Microsoft’s (MSFT) next version of Windows wouldn’t have a Start button, they panicked. Replaced in Windows 8 by the user interface formerly known as “Metro,” that tiny button is apparently so important to long-time Windows users that they can’t imagine life without it. Rest easy, neophobes — adding the Start button back to Windows 8 is easy and free, and we’ll show you how. More →
Research In Motion’s BlackBerry PlayBook tablet became the first BlackBerry device to be rooted this past November, granting users access to the device’s file system and allowing a level of customization that BlackBerry users have not had in the past. As RIM enters into the cat and mouse game Apple knows all too well, PlayBook owners willing to root their devices now have access to the Android Market as well as the apps contained within. CrackBerry has published a complete how-to guide that details all of the software and steps required in order to install Google’s Android Market on a PlayBook tablet. While an upcoming PlayBook software update will soon bring official Android app support to the tablet, apps will need to be repackaged and made available in BlackBerry App World in order to function in RIM’s app player. Using the guide linked below, no such tweaks are necessary from developers, and users can have Android apps running on the PlayBook immediately. More →
A group of iOS hackers have managed to successfully port Apple’s virtual assistant software Siri to the iPhone 4 and fourth-generation iPod touch, and the software needed to perform the port is now available to the public. Tech blog InTech-BB posted the necessary links on Sunday along with a how-to guide, and a number of users have reported successfully installing Siri on their devices using the tools and steps provided within the guide. Several users note problems with their cameras after installing the ported Siri software, but a fix is apparently now available. IPhone 4 and fourth-generation iPod touch owners who understand the risks involved with jailbreaking and installing unauthorized software can follow the read link below for a step-by-step tutorial along with a video of Siri in action on an iPhone 4. More →
We live in a digital age where it seems nearly impossible to maintain your privacy. There are some measures that can be taken to limit your exposure, however. While numerous companies make money by collecting data from public records and selling it to people looking to perform quick and easy background checks, there are ways to stop these companies from tossing around your personal information willy nilly. Reddit user “pibbman” has compiled a list of all the major background check sites that hand out your data to anyone with a credit card, and he has included instructions and links on how to opt out of their services and have your information removed from each site. Of course, be sure to search your name before opting out of any service — you’ll be required to prove your identity to these companies in order to opt out, and there’s no reason to hand over your information if they don’t already have it. Pibbman notes that once you have your personal information removed from each of the major sites he lists, you should also disappear from smaller sites as they seem to pull in data from the “big boys.” Hit the break for the start of this how-to guide, and hit the read link for the rest. More →
Microsoft doesn’t have plans to release its upcoming tablet-friendly Windows 8 operating system until some time next year, but that doesn’t mean Windows fans have to wait for an optimized tablet experience. Windows tablet fan Justin Campana found a series of apps and tweaks that can be combined with a few custom scripts to make the Windows 7 touch experience much more appealing. On his blog, Campana lays out a great guide that gives users all the tools they need to transform their contrived Windows 7 slates into gorgeous touch-optimized tablets. He uses a variety of software such as ObjectDock, Fences and Rainmeter along with a bunch of tweaks to make Windows 7 look like it was born for tablets. Best of all, Campana happily shares his methods with the world. Hit the break for a video of ASUS’ 12-inch Eee Slate EP121 Windows 7 tablet with touch optimizations applied, and follow the read link for a simple guide that will show you how to perform the mods yourself. More →
To say Android fans had mixed emotions earlier this month when Netflix finally released its Android app is an understatement. On the one hand, the app is finally here, which is obviously great news. On the other hand, Netflix only made the app available on five of the many, many Android phones currently on the market. But we have good news for those of you with an Android device not currently supported by the Netflix app: your pals over at xda-developers forum have figured out a workaround that will let you install the app and stream all the movies and TV shows you can handle — and you won’t even need to root your phone. The workaround is tested and working on plenty of devices and it couldn’t be easier to do; you’ll just have to change a setting and then install one of the Netflix apps linked in the xda thread. Of note, most AT&T devices won’t be supported until a fix is implemented, but that should be coming in the near future. Check out the via link below for the how-to, and the files you’ll need can be found through the read link. More →
Apple has been testing multitouch gestures for quite a while, and we reported in January that this will likely lead to Apple ultimately ditching the home button on future iPad and iPhone devices. The feature, which simplifies certain tasks such as app switching, still isn’t available to the general public. But as it turns out, anyone can enable multitouch gestures on the iPad or iPad 2 with just a few minutes and $5. As pointed out by Gizmodo, users can simply purchase Apple’s iOS developer software Xcode 4 — available for $5 from the Mac App Store — and enable the nifty feature with a single click. Once enabled, users will be able to use a four-finger swipe from side to side in order to switch open apps, swipe up with four fingers to open the app switcher, and use a five-finger pinch to return to the home screen. Hit the break for the simple instructions. More →
Sorry, Stevie… it looks like your plan to keep Flash off iOS devices just hit another speed bump. We know Apple claims performance issues are the reason Flash is nowhere to be found on iOS devices — and we can’t say we disagree with the company’s assessment, in some cases — but we also know tons of Web video content still uses Adobe’s Flash platform and, well, we want the option to view it on our iPhones, iPads and iPods. There are several options for viewing Flash videos on your iDevice, but most methods involve a jailbreaking. Skyfire is a good non-jailbreak option of course, but it has a tendency to be a bit slow at times. Luckily, a group of developers has a new free method that doesn’t involve a jailbreak — in fact, you don’t even have to install an app. A simple bookmarklet is all you need to stream Flash videos right to your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Hit the jump for a quick guide that will bring a plethora of embedded Flash video content to your iOS device of choice. More →
A sometimes overlooked feature that has been made incredibly simple on the iPhone is the ability to subscribe to a variety of calendars. Many are familiar with CalDAV as it adds a quick and easy way to keep your iPhone or iPod touch in sync with your Google Calendar, but did you know you can also add a wide range of publicly available calendar subscriptions in a matter of seconds? One of the more common subscriptions is the US holidays calendar but you can also quickly and easily add TV show schedules, network premier schedules, sports team schedules, movie releases, concert tour schedules and plenty more to your iPhone calendar. Hit the jump to find out how.
Firefox users take note: You need to do this. Now. As in, this instant. More savvy users are probably already familiar with editing Firefox’s configuration file but whether you’re a computer rookie or a seasoned veteran, Gnoted has issued a handful of tweaks that really get Firefox cooking. As much as we all love the fox, it can get a bit slow on occasion – especially if you’re like us and have 35 open tabs spread across four windows at any given time. By tweaking the way Firefox handles some caching functions, you can dramatically improve page load speed and even prevent Firefox from hogging your system resources while minimized. If you don’t currently have any experience playing with your configuration file, don’t be scared. Just follow the simple instructions, take your time and if you want a security blanket to squeeze, jot down each setting before you change it so you can always restore the default configuration if need be. So without further ado, hit the jump and get tweaking – just remember to restart Firefox when you’re done.
No, this certainly isn’t the first time we’ve seen multi-touch demonstrated on the HTC G1. This time around however, the sweet demo is accompanied by an extensive how-to guide that will walk you through enabling your T-Mobile G1 for some sexy multi-touch zooming action. Of course the process is hardly T-Mobile approved so we have to warn you that you’ll likely void any warranties, but such is the price for the more ambitious mobile users out there. All in all, the process isn’t overly difficult for savvy gadgeteers but there’s always a chance something could go wrong – consider this your brick warning. This hack is also still in early stages so multi-touch is not yet implemented in all of the areas you’d want it to be. If you’re still fiending for some multi-touch love on your G1 however, toss on your hacker hat and hit the read link. For those who don’t quite have the stomach for invasive G1 surgery, no worries – you can still enjoy a saucy multi-touch video after the jump.