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EXPLOREMY LIBRARY

Computeractive 602

Computeractive is the UK’s best-selling computer magazine and your friendly guide to PCs, gadgets and the web! It includes regular news updates, project ideas, help and advice on popular reader queries, articles on anti-virus software, features on consumer rights, and a whole lot more to help you get the very best out of your computer. Get PC advice in plain English today – get Computeractive!

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Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Dennis Publishing UK
Frequency:
Biweekly
$3.57(Incl. tax)
$53.87(Incl. tax)
26 Issues

in this issue

1 min
from the editor

Google, Facebook and their fellow tech giants can talk about strengthening privacy all they like, but it doesn’t alter this blunt truth: how much money they make depends entirely on how closely they track you online. They don’t make cars, mine gold or run hotels. They sell advertising space to companies that want to know everything about you, from the last link you clicked online to the last item you bought. They’ll never stop wanting more information because every lost piece of data means they make less money. I don’t mean this to be alarmist. Many people have made their peace with online tracking, accepting it as the price for free online services. But you have much more control over the degree of tracking than you think. In our Cover Feature, Robert Irvine…

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2 min
microsoft ‘fixes’ pc crashes caused by march update

Microsoft has suggested a temporary fix for a problem that was crashing computers when users tried to print from them. It admitted that the problem – affecting a “subset of customers using certain printers” – was being caused by the Windows 10 update for version 2004 released on 9 March (codenamed KB5000802: www.snipca.com/37652). This is the latest release in Microsoft’s regular set of monthly updates known as ‘Patch Tuesday’, containing security fixes for Windows. The problem was also occurring in the March updates for versions 1909 (KB5000808), 1809 (KB5000822) and 1803 (KB5000809). Within hours, users were complaining online that their computers were showing the Blue Screen of Death, with the error message ‘APC_INDEX_ MISMATCH’. Microsoft said the problem occurs in some Type 3 printer drivers, which are downloaded from the manufacturer’s website, not Type…

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1 min
what we think

‘Windows update causes problems’ belongs to the ‘Dog bites man’ realm of wholly predictable headlines. What’s more surprising is that Microsoft’s video outlining how to fix the problem is well explained and shows clear instructions. Incredibly, it sounds like it was made by an actual human being who knows how to help other human beings. We’ve always argued that Microsoft should be judged less on update problems (assuming they’re not too severe), and more on how quickly and smoothly they’re fixed.…

1 min
add new or missing roads to google maps

You can now add new or missing roads to Google Maps using a new editing tool. Visit www.google.com/maps on your computer, then click the top-left menu (three horizontal lines). Scroll down the menu that appears, then click ‘Edit the map’ (see screenshot), followed by ‘Missing road’. You now need to draw the road on the map. Click where it should be, then give it a name in the box that appears and click ‘Add a note’ to add information, followed by Submit. Google will send you an email confirming your suggestion. It will then review it to check that it’s valid before emailing you its verdict. Read more on its blog: www.snipca.com/37644. You’ll like this… You can now download noises made by Perseverance on Mars (www.snipca.com/37643) but not this… Netflix is cracking down on people sharing passwords…

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1 min
‘unbreakable’ broadband combines 4g and fixed line

Vodafone has launched a package that automatically switches to its 4G network should its fixed-line broadband connection go down. It says the Pro Broadband package provides “unbreakable” broadband by guaranteeing that you stay online, whether through home Wi-Fi or 4G. It uses a hybrid router that has a 4G dongle plugged in (pictured above right). Customers will receive “dedicated support” from Vodafone’s team of “WiFi Xperts”, as well as Wi-Fi extenders to boost signals into black spots. Customers who aren’t satisfied with their home Wi-Fi coverage will be offered the opportunity to leave their contract without paying a fee. Prices range from £35 a month for 35Mbps to £60 for 900Mbps (read more at www.snipca.com/37626). Vodafone’s launch comes a month after BT announced a similar ‘unbreakable’ deal that combines broadband and 4G. The…

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1 min
we got bits wrong: microsoft retracts quantum-computing ‘breakthrough’

A Microsoft-led team of scientists have backtracked on claims they found an elusive subatomic particle that could help develop more powerful computers. In a 2018 paper in the scientific journal Nature, they said they’d found evidence of Majorana particles, which have long been theorised about but never detected. The team hoped that the particles would lead to a breakthrough in quantum computing, in which ‘qubits’ of information can have a value of one and zero at the same time, based on the concept of quantum physics. This would vastly increase computing power, making it possible to perform complex calculations simultaneously. But the researchers now admit that they made mistakes, including mislabelling a graph and changing data unnecessarily. They’ve apologised for using “insufficient scientific rigour” in the research. The paper, which has now been retracted, came…

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