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PC Magazine

PC Magazine January 2017

PC Magazine provides lab-tested reviews, detailed tips and how-tos, insightful feature stories, expert commentary, and the latest tech trends to help you at work, at home, and on the road. And for a limited time, we're offering a copy of Breakout: How Atari 8-Bit Computers Defined a Generation with new subscriptions. This brand-new book is all about what made Atari's computers great: excellent graphics and sound, flexible programming environment, and wide support.

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United States
Ziff Davis
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12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
living in glass houses

The National Security Agency can read your email. Verizon knows where you are at all times. Amazon is confident you’re in the market for a new printer. We know these things about the weird world we live in, but few of us ever stop to think about what they really mean. Recently, a group of artists got together in New York City to change that. Apple doesn’t have a retail store on Mulberry Street in New York City, but at a glance, you might think it does. The Glass Room exhibit borrows heavily from the Apple Store design esthetic: white walls, white ceiling, white podium, and even helpful “inGenious” staffers in matching white hoodies (see the photo below). But nothing is for sale in The Glass Room. It’s a collection of…

4 min.
trump’s new tech era

I like to go back and look at older articles written about upcoming trends in technology and in this case, politics. Thanks, Sascha, for citing an article you printed back in March. It was very insightful. I don’t want to sound like a shill for Martin Ford but I found his book (“Rise Of The Robots”) very interesting and alarming.— maverick909 I wonder if Sasha is afraid of getting fired if he says anything positive about Trump. Seems like a pretty scary situation for anyone not on the “right side”… I can’t seem to find any positive articles on tech sites, and considering Trump won, there must be some people who think positive of him but are just scared of the atmosphere of fear being created by the left.—Adin Sascha’s reply: Honestly,…

4 min.
how do you feel? affectiva’s ai can tell

Imagine powering up your digital device and, after a quick scan of your facial expression, having it respond with, “Hey there, what’s going on?”. Massachusetts-based Affectiva is working on this type of “socio-emotive A.I.,” and PCMag met the company’s director of market development, Jim Deal, at Unity3D’s Unite 2016 conference recently. Companies know that humans want to be liked, and so they don’t always tell the truth about a game, movie, or other commercial product when asked. People might say, “It’s great!,” but they’re not actually going to hand over any cash to buy the next upgrade. But the company takes them at their word and invests millions in development, only to have the product flop. Deal became keenly aware of this problem during his time at Microsoft and as founder of…

2 min.
nextev aims to leverage formula e racing tech

Formula racing has long been a laboratory for performance car companies to push their research and development to the limit, on the way to introducing it into their street-legal car models. That’s one reason that cutting-edge Formula 1 has moved to hybrid engines from the more fan-popular V-8s; hybrids are where the money is for companies such as Mercedes and Renault, which drive much of the funding. Startup circuit Formula E was founded in part to do the same thing for electric vehicle development. Now, Chinese startup NextEV aims to take its learnings from Formula E and turn them into a competitive all-electric mass-market crossover—aiming squarely at Tesla’s Model X. NextEV recently attracted attention when its Nio EP9 1,341 horsepower prototype supercar set an electric vehicle record on Germany’s Nürburgring track.…

2 min.
‘guessing attack’ bypasses credit card security in 6 seconds

December is always a very busy time for banks and credit card companies, as we all scramble to purchase presents in time for the holidays. But it’s also a boon period for fraudsters who are trying to steal those precious card details. And now it seems, they can “guess hack” a credit card in mere seconds. A team of researchers at Newcastle University discovered two weaknesses in the way online transactions are verified using the Visa payment system. Neither weakness is of much use alone, but when used together, an attacker can recover a credit card’s security information in as few as 6 seconds. The two weaknesses being taking advantage of are as follows: 1. Online payment systems do not detect multiple invalid payment requests if they are performed across multiple websites. They…

2 min.
what we love most this month

180S BLUETOOTH WIRELESS EAR WARMERS Freezing temperatures and snowy sidewalks shouldn’t stop you from enjoying the great outdoors. Whether you’re walking the dog or running off that holiday ham, bundle up with 180s Bluetooth wireless ear warmers. Built-in speakers let you take phone calls and listen to music hands-free. Grid fleece lining protects from wind and water for added comfort. $69.99 180s.com SEIRUS HEATTOUCH IGNITE MITT With the Seirus HeatTouch Ignite gloves, heated insulation and windproof and waterproof lining are covered in full-grain leather for a stylish and practical wintertime accessory. Just push the button to activate the gloves for 6 hours (low), 4 hours (medium), or 2 hours (high). A built-in heat panel helps keep your hands and fingers toasty—as long as the battery lasts. Available in men’s or women’s versions, in…