Electromagnetism- the Secret of Your Storage Drive

Whether you prefer classic hard disk drives or solid-state drives (also called flash drives), you rely on some form of electromagnetism to store your precious data. Your data has to be able to be converted into digital form to be stored in a computer, and as you likely know, digital data is stored in binary code, or a sequence of 0’s and 1’s.

But it’s not as if there’s just a bunch of 0’s and 1’s in your physical hard drive that your computer then configures into the data you recognize when you see it on your monitor. No, the physical way of storing binary code is through either the presence or absence of magnetism or electrical current.

b.opIn the case of a hard disc drive, if there’s no magnetism, that means 0. If there is magnetism, that means 1. A piece of magnetized metal reads the presence or absence of magnetism on tiny (microscopic) units of space on a spinning disk and from that understands what binary code to send to the computer, which then uses software to translate that code into more digestible information for you to read from your monitor.

In the case of a solid state drive, the absence of an electric current means 0, and the presence of an electric current means 1. Because electric currents can be created by transistors and transistors are able to be made smaller and smaller as time goes on (while hard disk drives can only be so  small and still be functional due to their reliance on a spinning disk mechanism), solid-state drives are capable of being much smaller and storing the same amount of information as hard disk drives. However, if your SSD fails, it’s going to be way less likely that you’re able to recover the information.

But this give and take between electricity and magnetism goes much deeper than a choice between storage drives. Magnetism actually begets electricity, and the other way around. Here’s how:

It comes down to subatomic particles, as things so often do. Each electron is surrounded by a force called an electric field. When an electron moves, it creates a second field called a magnetic field. When electrons are made to move together, or flow in an electric current through a conductor (i.e. a metal or other substance with a structure that enables electrons to weave through the place comfortably), the conductor becomes a temporary magnet.

hmBut that’s electricity begetting magnetism. How would that current even be forced to be created? If you get a coil of wire and place it near a magnet with an unchanging magnetic filed, nothing happens. However, if that magnetic field is changed by moving the magnet back and forth or spinning the wire, the changing magnetic field can produce an electric current in the wire.

Electricity and magnetism have always been extremely closely related, in an interactive relationship known as electromagnetism. Flowing electrons produce a magnetic field and spinning magnets cause an electric current to flow. Simple as that.

Apple and Microsoft Investigated for Child Labor Issues

Amnesty International and the African Resources Watch (Afrewatch) released a report today regarding child labor in the Democratic Republic of Congo. According to the report, children ages seven and up are working 12-hour days in dangerous conditions to mine cobalt, a material that many tech firms use to create smartphones. The report also claims that large tech companies like Apple, Microsoft and Samsung have not performed the basic checks necessary to ensuring that their mineral mining operations don’t use child labor.

cobaltCobalt is integral to the creation of rechargeable lithium batteries, which are found in many smart mobile devices. Over half the cobalt used globally originated in the Dominican Republic of Congo, which has often been criticized for its tolerance of child labor.

This is not news to human rights enthusiasts. In 2012, Unicef uncovered the fact that over 40,000 children had worked in DRC mines in the past year and that many of those mines harvested cobalt. Adult and child mine workers were interviewed, and many described being paid as little as $1 daily and enduring violence, intimidation and health problems on the job.

Amnesty International and Afrewatch claim that mines employing those people provided the cobalt in lithium batteries sold to 16 multinational brands. According to the report, the cobalt came from Congo Dongfang Mining, which is owned by the Chinese mineral company Huayou Cobalt. Huayou Cobalt then sells its minerals to battery manufacturers, who then sell their batteries to Apple, Microsoft, Samsung, Sony, Vodafone, and a variety of other tech giants.

According to Huayou Cobalt, company heads were not aware that their suppliers relied upon child labor and in general labor in unsafe working conditions.

Samsung, Sony and Vodafone apparently denied an claims to having a connection with this supply chain or to DRC Cobalt in the first place. Apple responded by saying it was evaluating many different materials including cobalt for labor and environmental risks. Microsoft claimed that it had not traced cobalt use in its products all the way to the mine level “due to the complexes and resources required.”

cobalt2The DRC has met a variety of conflicts as a result of its possession of huge amounts of highly valuable natural resources. The demand for these resources brings plenty of buyers, causing the DRC to build up the largest workforce of miners in the world. However, these miners work in uncontrolled and dangerous conditions and are unchecked by environmental regulations, leading to land degradation and pollution.

Globally, the cobalt market has remained unregulated due to its possession outside the “conflict mineral” legislation that regulates the extraction of other minerals like gold and tin. Cobalt’s extremely high utility in the manufacture of smartphones and other mobile devices that run off small lithium batteries have perhaps made it necessary for it to be upgraded to “conflict mineral” status. This however, would likely face powerful lobbying by tech companies that prefer lower prices to human rights.

As to how knowledgable these companies were about the sources of their cobalt, it’s difficult to say. Though I for one would not be surprised if the secret’s outing was the biggest surprise this event had to offer the tech giants.

Does Your Computer Make You Laugh More?

Obviously society has been hugely affected by the rise of the internet and the information that it makes available to users. Many of these effects have been measured, but many more are so useless or subtle that no one has seen fit to look into them. One question this writer asks because she’s being paid to say anything is: do people laugh more as a result of the emergence of the internet? Probably yes. But what does that mean for society as a whole? Let’s start out by looking to what laughter is and how it affects you.

memeLaughter is simply the physiological response to humor, which is itself a difficult thing to explain. Laughter as a phenomenon consists of two different parts: a set of gestures and a produced sound (though we have all had times in which we laugh so hard we produce no sound at all). When we laugh, our brain pressures us to participate in both of these activities, and hearty laughs allow for changes to occur in many parts of the body such as the arm, leg and trunk muscles.

Laughter is described by the Encyclopedia Britannica as “rhythmic, vocalized, expiratory and involuntary actions.” It involves the contraction of at least fifteen facial muscles and the stimulation of the zygomatic major muscle, which is responsible for moving your upper lip. The respiratory system is interrupted by the epiglottis half-closing the larynx, which is responsible for you gasping. Tear duct activation may occur, and the face may become red and wet.

Unfortunately for behavioral neurobiologist and laughter researcher Robert Provine, studying laughter is extremely difficult. He has found, however, that there are certain similarities among all laughter and that there a neurological process in the brain that leads people to be more prone to laughing if the people around them are also laughing.

Humor researcher Peter Derks claims that laughter response is “a really quick, automatic type of behavior.”

“In fact, how quickly our brain recognizes the incongruity that lies at the heart of most humor and attaches an abstract meaning to it determines whether we laugh,” he explained.

Cultural anthropologist Mahadev Apte had this to say: “Laughter occurs when people are comfortable with one another, when they feel open and free. And the more laughter, the more bonding within the group.”

trollStudies have also found that dominant individuals tend to use humor more than their subordinates. Controlling the laughter of a group can be a way of exercising power by controlling the emotional climate of said group. Some believe that laughter may have evolved to change the behavior of others.

What does this mean for an internet community ranging from trolls to bloggers? To some extent it means the creation of new circles of people across the world united by a shared sense of humor. It means that new social systems can function with humor as a major foundation of what everyone has in common and how power is attributed across the board. Memes are a thing.

Is Podcasting for You?

You’ve likely heard of them; internet radio stations you can download and listen to at your leisure instead of making sure to clear your schedule and tune in on the right day at the right time. Podcasts are a great invention that came alongside the internet, and they’ve allowed for huge amounts of niche radio stations to pop up and spout all kinds of knowledge and opinions. Here’s a little info on where podcasts came from and how you can start your own.

podcast broThe first podcast ever was created in 2004 by MTV video jockey Adam Curry and a software develeoper named Dave Winer. Curry had written a program called iPodder that allowed him to automatically download Internet radio broadcasts to his iPod, and then other software developers saw what he was going and improved on his idea, eventually creating the format for podcasting. Curry’s The Daily Source Code is now one of the most popular podcasts on the internet.

What’s great about podcasting is that it’s totally free from government regulation (unlike radio broadcasting, which requires that you purchase a license and comply with the Federal Communications Commission’s broadcast decency regulations). If you enjoy a good four-letter word now and then, chances this is good news. Despite this lack of regulation, copyright law still does apply to podcasters, so the government protects podcasters’ intellectual property without regulating it.

Podcasters are anything from highly paid employees of major corporations to people podcasting from home studios. They don’t rely on ratings or money, so people are free to talk about anything they want regardless of it being popular, allowing for there to be a podcast for every niche subject, from people just shooting the s*** to people totally committed to discovering UFOs and paranormal activity.

Some companies are actively trying to find a way to make money with podcasting. There are websites like podcastalley.com and podcast.net that act as a source for podcasts and now feature advertisements. Popular podcasts hosted by Tom Segura as well as the Stuff You Should Know podcast have their hosts present commercials for Me Undies and other random products.

podcast sisIf you’d like to start listening to a podcast, just choose a podcasting site and click on the hyperlink for whatever podcast sounds good to you. You could check out the iTunes store, The Podcast Network or The Podcast Directory if you want to browse for possible podcasts that suit your fancy. There are also apps on your mobile phone that you can download.

Audio files made for different sizes and capacities of audio streaming have been invented to compete with the standard MP3; there’s AAC (Advanced Audio Coding) and WMA (Windows Media Audio) for example. These advancements are so prevalent that no matter what you want, you can be sure that there’s a free version out there.

Maybe you’d like to create a podcast. Don’t even hesitate! It’s super easy. Just plug a microphone into your computer, install an audio recorder for Windows, Mac or Linux, create an audio file by making a recording of whatever you want on your podcast, and upload that audio file to one of the podcasting sites. If you want anyone to listen to it ever, you’re going to have to promote it pretty heavily.

You can also opt into videocasts if you’re interested in making more of a TV show type thing.

Advances in Deep Learning Can Help Computers Fight Malware

Malicious software is always engineered to hide that it’s malicious. Programs meant to fight malicious software must be sophisticated enough to identify it despite its attempts at camouflage. So far the conflict has raged on with neither type of software able to eliminate the other completely and each type of software having no choice but to become ever more advanced. However, resolution may be just around the corner.

Cybersecurity company Deep Instinct just released a security solution that utilizes “deep learning” to enable a program to learn to identify bad code on its own, without being programmed to recognize anything in particular.

deep learning“Deep learning draws its inspiration from the human mind. It organizes itself into a structure of synthetic neurons. It’s another term for neural networks,” explained Bruce Daley, principal analyst at Tractica. “It was rebranded because there was so little progress with neural nets.”

Daley went on to explain exactly what kind of advantage deep learning capabilities can offer an application: “With traditional programming, as you code, you have to anticipate all the situations that arise that you have to deal with. What deep learning does is take the data and build a model from what it finds in the data that’s statistically relevant.”

“So you don’t have to anticipate all the relationships the program will encounter,” he added. “It turns into something like making beer or making bread.”

Another distinction: deep learning is more advanced than machine learning. For example, in the context of facial recognition software, a program would contain information about how to identify a nose, eyes, bone structure, etc. A facial recognition program outfitted with deep learning capabilities would be able to learn the facial features itself.

The difference between a normal program and one equipped with deep learning is profound; traditional programming methods allow for the slightest change in malicious code to fool a program. Deep Instinct CTO Eli David explained, “It’s as if I show you the picture of a cat, then I modify a few pixels, and you can’t recognize it’s a cat.”

Deep learning allows a program to have a much more comprehensive understanding of what makes malicious software what it is, so a few metaphorical “pixels” won’t make all the difference.

“With deep learning, you can show just the tail of the cat, and it will return with high confidence that it’s a cat. It is extremely resilient to variance and modification,” explained David.

Tractica forecasts that applications that utilize deep learning will generate a $10 billion market by 2024.deep learning stuff

Deep Instinct clearly believes it, and is now wagering on cybersecurity being a fruitful subset of deep learning applications. Given 2015’s proliferation of high-profile cyberattacks and the push towards increased government surveillance, it’s not a bad bet.

For how advanced Deep Instinct’s security solution is, it remains pretty small; it takes up only 10 MB of memory, and is generally inactive so it doesn’t take up much processing power either.

“Most of the time this agent does nothing,” said David. “When it detects a new file–any type of file– it passes it through the deep learning module on the device. If the file is malware, it will remove it or quarantines it.”

Meet Solu

In terms of products that teeter between being industry disruptors and flashy gimmicks, the Finnish-engineered Solu may take the cake.

Don’t be fooled by the Solu’s delightfully small, square shape and cute, partially wooden exterior- this little device is actually more powerful than any mobile and is designed to be plugged into desktop screens when not used as the world’s smallest handheld personal computer. Its operating system is Windows-esque and connects easily to your contacts.

solu computer

The Solu can be paired with a keyboard and hooked up to a display with up to a 4K resolution. In these circumstances, the Solu can also be used as a computer mouse.

As an engineering project, the Solu attracted the aspiration of a team of Finnish tech leaders including Kristoffer Lawson, Javier Reyes and Nixu founder Pekka Nikande, all of whom were attracted by the opportunity to disrupt the personal computing establishment.

As Lawson said, “When the challenge is big enough, the smart people will get inspired.”

Lawson believes that the domination of Microsoft and Apple over the personal computing industry has been harmful towards its development. He believes that there are major areas for growth in personal computer developments that have been largely ignored.

One particular area of growth Lawson sees is the way that computers connect to the internet: “Yes we have email but we’re still fighting with backups, hard drive space and downloading and installing applications. The whole internet is not a natural part of the computer itself. If you run out of local resources, you’re screwed.”

Solu’s hardware is linked directly to a cloud service based out of Finland that the team has also engineered. The cloud allows for the user to scale up, while the device itself has a capacity of 32 GB.

Unlike Google’s Chromebook, the Solu is designed to work offline as opposed to being “basically just a web browser.”

Perhaps most striking about the Solu is its unique interface. As opposed to being organized by file type or location, memory spaces are presented as a web of bubble-ish nodes resembling a textbook image of a neural pathway.


Even the computer software payment model of Solu is unique. Users pay a fixed fee every month for as much cloud storage as they need and access to as many apps as they want. Solu is buckling down with some new developers to create its own apps and also works with Android apps.

Regardless of what happens with this strange little device, it is somewhat refreshing to see a new player enter the game, and bring along with it a host of new ideas about how people can use and relate to their virtual worlds. As stated on their website, Solu is truly “Rethinking the computer”:

“Our entire ecosystem is built around the way people work and play today, allowing you the freedom and flexibility to get things done wherever you are, whenever you need them done.”

Data Recovery: About it and the four phase cycle of recovery

Data recovery is a process of retrieving or getting back the data that has been removed due to various reasons. Like the ones mentioned above, in a day-to-day life. This could be from corrupted media, drives, or files.

Now, like any other process known, data recovery too is a very logical and methodical process. This essentially has four phases of steps to retrieve the data:

  1. Phase one: Fix the Hard Disk Drive: This phase, as the term itself indicates, is about repairing the hard disk drive of the system or the network. As well known a fact it is that the hard disk can come as a major savior to data prevention, even when a network function fails. Thus, concentrating on the hard disk drive would be but the foundation stone lay to ensure that the lost data can be retrieved. Repairing it means readying it for its optimal and smooth use, without any interruptions and glitches. For example, if the PCB is defective, it is to be made sure that it be either replaced or fixed properly, or the functioning of the heads has to be rechecked and so on.
  2. Phase two: Imaging the drive to a new disk image file/drive: Ensure that the drive that has currently gone dysfunctional be imaged to a fresh drive or even to a new disk image file. As mentioned, that the hard disk is the parent component to the chances of reading the data back. So, in this case, the data should be transferred to a fresh drive to ensure that it can be rescued and reproduced unharmed and unchanged. The faulty drive will be a long term threat to the data to be stored in the future. Create an image of the drive. This would ensure that the data is saved as a second copy on another fresh drive or device. This would most certainly work in getting the lost data back, without any harm or infected changes.
  3. Phase three: Recovery of partitions, Files, MBR and MFT logically: Now that the drive is already metamorphosed to a new look- into an all-new drive, one can begin the formal process of data recovery full on. Using this “photocopy” version of the failed drive, it is possible to now fix the partition table, the MFT, and the MBT. This is important as this would facilitate the retrieval of the data by reading the file system’s data structure.
  4. Phase four: Repair Retrieved Damaged files: As much of a utopia one would hope for- to retrieve the data impeccably untouched, there are quite a many chances of some part of it being damaged or corrupted. Say a part of a file written in a particular part of the drive is corrupted. This is very common to see as the disk drive goes for a toss. Now, the data has to be made readable from its current failing condition. For curing the files of this situation, a world of software is available. So, you are almost there!

Meaning of network and its benefits

Basically, a network involves all of the components (hardware as well as software) linking computers across any type of distances. A network provides easy information access which increases the user’s productivity. Building up a network gives many advantages, but the 3 important facts are: File sharing – through which you can view, copy and modify files from your computer which stored on other computer. Resource Sharing – through which you can share resources such as fax machines, printers, CD Drives, FDD, HDD, Scanners, Webcam, Modem and more devices. Program sharing – as like file sharing you can share programs here on a network.

network1Types of Network Technology

Different Types of Network technology are:

LAN (Local Area Network) – it is using to connect close geographical area network devices, such as building’s particular floor, a campus environment or a whole building.

WAN (Wide Area Network) – it is using to connecting LANs together. Usually, it is used to connect LANs which are split by a large distance.

MAN (Metropolitan Area Network) – which is a hybrid among LAN and WAN.

SAN (Storage Area Network) – it provides high-speed infrastructure and facilitates for moving data among storage devices and file servers. Some of the advantages of SANs are: very fast performance, UP to 10 km’s distance span, due to centralization of data resources management is easy, it is available with redundancy features so availability is high and it uses thin type protocol which makes low overhead. SANs only disadvantage is, it cost little bit high.

CNs (Content Networks) – It is developed mainly for the ease users internet resources accessing. Normally, 2 different types of CNs were deployed by companies: downloaded Internet information catching and Internet traffic loads distribution across multiple servers.

Intranet – it is a local network which is mainly using by companies locally connects all their resources. It can also be say as, users inside the company can able to find their companies resources details without going outside the company. It includes LAN, WAN and MAN.

Extranet – it is an extended intranet, where internal services of a particular company are made accessible to a known external business partners or external users at remote locations.

Internet – it is using for accessing your network of internal resources by an unknown external users. For example, if you are having a website through which you are selling various products, with the help of internet external users can able to access your website to know concerning your service.

VPN (Virtual Private Network) – it is a secured network and a special type also. VPN is mainly using in internet for providing secure connection between the public network. It is also using in Extranet for providing secure connection among organization and its known external business partners or external users.
System Area Network – also termed as Cluster Area Network. In a cluster configuration, System Area Network links computers having high-performance and high-speed connections.

network2Wi-Fi (Wireless Local Area Network) – it can use to connect internet type of network resource through wireless network access point, where access point need to have 20 meters above indoor range and greater outdoor range. Wi-Fi can use many devices such as personal computers, smart phones, video-game consoles, tablet computers, digital cameras and digital audio players.

Complete Guide On How To Recover Data From SSDs – SSD Drive Data Recovery Service

Why recovery is essential?

Advancements in computer technology had crossed various huddles like recovering lost data from hard drives, etc. There are various situations where we might lose our important data from hard drives. These include the following: a) Drives may fail to boot, b) Drives may be encrypted with malware programs, c) Drives may be physically damaged enough in not connected to PC through cables, d) Drives may lose its function, etc.

ssd1Irrespective of anything that happens, still the data from these drives can easily be recovered. There are many reasons why we need to rely on recovering data from hard drives. For instance, if the company is engaged in storing confidential documents in these hard drives then if they are damaged then the data need to be restored. Software has been developed for automatically recovering the data from such drives.

In fact, there are many such software available in the market to recover data from hard drives. This is the reason why SSD drives are developed. Let us understand what SSD is first. SSDs are Solid State Drives used for storing data using memory chips for reading and writing data on them. Usage of memory chips in these SSDs help in accessing these hard drives much faster than any other hard drives. Also, these SSDs are not easily damaged physically as they are made in such a way they can tolerate physical vibrations, high temperatures, etc. This is how SSDs stand out from other hard drives. Irrespective of the file location within these hard drives, any files can be restored from these SSDs.

How can we recover data from SSDs?

Steps involved in SSD Drive data recovery service include the following:

• Among various software available for recovering data from SSDs and other hard drives, choose the right one fulfilling your demands including cost, feasibility and compatibility with your computer.

• After selecting the right software, try getting its original version. Always try to use only original version but not download the cracked version. Try installing the software in your computer, following all necessary steps thereby.

• Now try connecting your hard drives. For SSDs, choose the disk from where data needs to be recovered. Then, there should be options for scanning the disk which needs to be selected.

• If the scan fails to show all the data stored in SSDs, then you must select the option of Lost Disk Drives, which would enable scanning of lost data from SSDs.

• This final scanning would find the lost data from damaged SSDs. After viewing their thumbnails, choose whatever files you would require to recover from SSD.

• Then choose the recover option and select the right location where the recovered files need to be stored. This will be completing SSD Drive data recovery service more effectively.

ssd2The same procedure can be used for recovering data from external hard drives and memory cards too. Like in any other, there are always exceptions for the recovery of lost data from SSDs too.

Role Of Hard Drive And Its Size

The main responsibility of hard drive is storage of data’s. On your computer, everything you are saving is getting stored in hard drive. Not just pictures, documents, videos and music. Your preferences, your program files and your OS are storing on the hard drive of your computer. The sad truth is you will lose all the stored files if hard disk gets damaged.

drive hard1That’s why many people are maintaining backup system for storing their important files in that. In hard drive, everything which we have saved is measured in expressions of its size. Very smallest file is text, picture is little bit bigger, music is bigger than picture file and video is the biggest file. It acts just like a scale. Hard drive can’t know the difference between the files; it knows only the size of the files. Like things are measuring in kilograms, the files stored in hard disk are measuring as megabyte, gigabyte and terabyte. If you want to store or take a backup of minimum files, then smaller hard drive (such as 500GB) is enough. Rather, if you want to store or take a backup of more files such as lot of audio and video files, then you need to use larger hard drive (such as 1TB).

Connections and speed of hard drive

Connecting hard drive to your computer is having 4 basic ways: USB – it is the common connection type and no need to do any set-up; the computer automatically recognizes the drive once you plug-in and immediately you can able to save and read files. FireWire – it is like plug and play USB and most popular in transferring video files. SATA – it is the internal hard disk common connection which provides more speed in any format of highest file transfer. eSATA – it is less common and found in PCs with high-performance connection, connection of eSATA executes at speed that intimately looks like an internal drive.

When and how to recovery data from hard drive?

Necessary to recover data from hard disk is for many reasons such as: Read/write heads of hard drive’s damaging, due to mishandled or unprotected power surge hard drive becomes fail, if hard disk exposing to coffee, water, condensation, battery leakage, flood and so on, file allocation table missing or damaging, hard drive formatted inadvertent, accidental or incorrectly, Master file table is corrupted or missing, burnt away chips hard drive, corrupted or missing of files or folders, not recognizing of hard drive by BIOS, hard drive head gets crash and Boot sector not get recognized.

drive hard2Hard drive data recovery is of two types: one is logical and the other is physical. Logical failures are due to virus, malware programs, errors in programs or software, inadvertent deletion of data and lost partitions. Whatever be the cast, the lost data can be recovered resources and tools by a data recovery specialist. Physical failures are through accumulated or direct trauma, botched repairs, through tampering, accidental cause and so on. In this case, the data is safeguarded on the drive but due to physical damage of hard drive it difficult to get access to the device. For successful extract of your valuable data best equipment and technical skills required.