Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Google Updates Biweekly Post


Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.


The tracking information for a message, which includes the servers it went through on its way from the sender to you, is stored in the message header.


Chrome Remote Desktop app for Android lets you remotely access your laptop in a free, easy and secure way.


YouTube video: 5 Life-Changing Gmail Hacks In Two Minutes or


Google Technology

News about other Google products and technology.


Jules Verne would be impressed, but it's only one step toward an attempt to provide Internet access to remote areas.


In today's accessible technology roundup: Google wants to embed cameras in contact lenses, Apple gets a patent for a new GUI for touch devices to improve accessibility and a hacker develops a virtual cane for the blind.

Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.


The key idea is that modern database technologies will allow commercial use of a spectrum that historically has been dedicated to federal purposes, when and where the government doesn’t have immediate need for it.


Speed is just one of the benefits of this new cipher suite.


Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.


April 22, 2014: Earth Day


You can travel to the past to see how a place has changed over the years by exploring Street View imagery in Google Maps for desktop.

Publication Date: April 30, 2014

Monday, April 28, 2014

Time To Change Your Macalester Password



ITS recommends that all Macalester Students, Faculty, and Staff change their Macalester passwords. 

In response to Heartbleed, ITS has patched Macalester’s small number of vulnerabilities on central systems. We strongly encourage you to change your password to protect your data and the college’s data. To change your password, visit password.macalester.edu. For help creating a strong secure password, visit ITS Password Guidelines.

Background on the Heartbleed flaw and OpenSSL
In recent weeks, researchers discovered a flaw in the security tool OpenSSL. This tool encrypts and protects Internet traffic and communications between devices. Most users would know this by the small, closed padlock and “https:” on Web browsers to signify that your Internet traffic is secure. The flaw, nicknamed Heartbleed, allows an attacker to capture usernames, passwords, and pretty much any other information.

Why this matters
OpenSSL is used everywhere: when you shop at Amazon, access your personal email, use your personal banking, or visit your social network, blogging and sharing sites. It can also be used to secure communications on personal mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, securing Web browsers, or securing Web apps you may have installed. The Heartbleed vulnerability in OpenSSL could allow a remote attacker to access data that is passed through it—such as usernames and passwords.

What ITS has been doing
Macalester ITS staff responded to this issue as soon as the bug became public. It quickly became apparent that Macalester was relatively safe from this vulnerability, for two reasons: 1) few of our servers use OpenSSL, and those that did were quickly fixed; and 2) a recently deployed firewall product at Macalester included protection against Heartbleed. ITS staff have updated protections against ‘Heartbleed’ on central systems.

What you should do
Change your Macalester password, using ITS’ self-service password tool at password.macalester.edu. For help, please see our guidelines on creating a strong, secure password.

What about my other passwords?
Regarding your other personal passwords (e.g. banks, credit unions, insurance, etc.), we recommend that you change these if you have received notice confirming either that the vulnerability did not apply, or that the Websites have taken the proper measures and are secure.

If the sites and services that you use include alternate ways of confirming your identity, such as a cell phone number for text message (what is commonly referred to as '2-factor authentication'), consider adopting them.  This will mitigate an attack if your password is ever compromised.

Web browsers

 *You should exercise caution when visiting Web sites, as Heartbleed can affect Web browsers.  All major browsers have addressed the issue, but caution is always advised.

*You can test sites using the Heartbleed Test Site at https://lastpass.com/heartbleed.

*You should always completely log out when finished with a Web site—or, if finished using the Web altogether, quit your browser.


Friday, April 25, 2014

1600grand Maintenance Sunday, April 27, 2014

1600grand will be intermittently inaccessible between 9:00 and 10:00 AM Sunday April 27, so that necessary maintenance can be performed.  No other networked services will be affected, and 1600grand service should be fully restored by 10:00 AM. 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The New Google Sheets Have Arrived at Macalester



During the week of April 21, 2014, Macalester's domain will automatically be upgraded to the new Sheets. Spreadsheets created after the upgrade will use the new version. 

For now, this upgrade does not affect existing spreadsheets and only relates to any new spreadsheets created.




Sample of New Google Sheets Features


  • Offline: Create and edit spreadsheets without an Internet connection after setting up offline access in Chrome.
  • Speed: New spreadsheets load and scroll much faster, removing many of the limits for formula complexity and spreadsheet size.
  • Improved formula editing: Check out our new function editing tools to help you build complex formulas.
  • Filter views: Create, save, and apply multiple filter views without changing what your collaborators see.
  • Expand is no longer needed, all cells are shown in the new version of Sheets.

Resources


Contact the ITS Help Desk at helpdesk@macalester.edu or 651-696-6525 for assistance.



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Google Updates Biweekly Post



Publication Date: April 16, 2014

Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.


Coming soon: You can save time and insert your Auto Backup photos from your phone into Gmail messages on the Web using the new Insert Photo button.


The W3C makes ARIA an official recommendation, Apple adds a new accessibility feature to iOS 7.1 and why Google’s removal of link underlines could hurt accessibility.


Google Technology

News about other Google products and technology.


Project Ara is Google’s attempt to reinvent the cellphone as we know it.


It’s basically just a bunch of cameras and sensors glommed onto a fairly impressive Android smartphone with a quad-core processor and 2GBs of RAM to crunch all that environment data.


Owners of Google Chromebooks will be able to quickly join Cisco Webex conferences with an application demonstrated for the first time today at Enterprise Connect.




Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.


Following Google's acquisition of drone manufacturer Titan Aerospace, Bloomberg Television has discussed what it may mean for user privacy.

Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.


April 11, 2014: Percy Julian's 115th Birthday




Google provided technology to help support the LBJ Presidential Library’s Civil Rights Summit to mark the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.


Now with Auto Awesome Photobombs, you too can get a celebrity photobomb—no red carpet required.
Introducing Auto Awesome Photobombs with David Hasselhoff

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Macalester and 'Heartbleed'

Recently there's been lots of discussion about 'Heartbleed,' a gap in an Internet tool used by many vendors and sites.  This vulnerability has been around for more than two years, but was only discovered Monday April 7.  ITS staff are aware of the problem and are working to protect our network from it.  There is no evidence at this time that any Macalester accounts have been compromised.  ITS will send out further information about Heartbleed.  For now, be aware - but don't panic. 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Google Updates Biweekly Post


Publication Date: April 2, 2014

Google Apps

Updates to core Google Apps and the major services like Google+. Also major updates that may affect the Macalester community.


Customize your theme with a selfie and share it. Shelfie, the SHareable sELFIE.


Gmail will always use an encrypted HTTPS connection when you check or send email.


Coming soon: New calendar events will now have a Hangouts video call link added automatically.


Coming soon: Slides and Drawings will now let you crop, apply shape masks, and add borders to your images right within your presentation and drawings.


Coming soon: This new version is faster and can support larger spreadsheets.


Coming soon: Customize your App Launch menu, too!


Google Technology

News about other Google products and technology.


Google’s Android Wear: extends Android to wearables.


Google is developing a new solution for indoor navigation.


Google Business

Google Business news, including policies, user privacy, politics and legal issues.


Watch this YouTube video of how Google responds to U.S. search warrants, while working hard to protect our users' privacy and security.


Google Extra

Other Google side projects, including art, science and fun stuff.


A round-up of Google’s better attempts at humor for April Fool’s Day 2014.


The worst day for actual news and lame attempts at humor.


From Google’s Think Insights: data will be remembered only if presented in the right way. And often a slide, spreadsheet or graph is not the right way; a story is.