Posts tagged could

Why Nofollow Links Could Become the Redheaded Stepchildren of SEO – Search Engine Watch

Search Engine Watch
Why Nofollow Links Could Become the Redheaded Stepchildren of SEO
Search Engine Watch
This week alone, I've run into about 50 sites with advertising policies that specifically state all links will be nofollowed. They're all more than happy to sell a link, of course, even without disclosure, but don't even think about asking them for a

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Why Nofollow Links Could Become the Redheaded Stepchildren of SEO

Nofollow links can be great for traffic, but are they leading us down a dangerous path where we can’t trust anything we read online?

View full post on Search Engine Watch – Latest

iOS 8 Warning: Apple’s Dropbox Killer Could Murder Your App Data

After a summer of waiting, Apple is unleashing iOS 8, the latest version of its mobile operating system on Wednesday. Among the new features that promise to improve the way you we use our iPhones and iPads, there’s one item that could do the opposite: iCloud Drive.

The new online storage and sync option comes new as part of iOS 8, and it’s supposed to make documents and other data easy to access from both your Apple mobile device and OS X desktop software. The problem: For Mac users, it relies on the latest version of the computer operating system, Yosemite, which isn’t out yet. 

Here’s what you need to know.

iCloud Drive Could Make Some Functions Evaporate

Similar to Dropbox or Google Drive, iCloud Drive is supposed to let you and your apps access data, no matter what Apple device you use (though they need to be new enough to run iOS 8 and Yosemite).

If you’re upgrading to the new iPhone software immediately, the most imperative thing to do—apart from backing up your phone—is not enabling the iCloud Drive option. 

See also: Apple Offers Handy How-To For Android Users Who Want To Make The Switch

Apps—like Realmac Software’s Clear productivity app—can’t function with the feature turned on. Originally, the app featured a desktop component that communicated with the mobile app. iOS 8 and Yosemite hijacks that functionality, unless the user shuts it off. The developer explains in a blog post:

As OS X Yosemite is still pre-release (and not yet available) upgrading to iCloud Drive will prevent you from syncing with Clear for Mac until both OS X Yosemite is released and you upgrade to OS X Yosemite. 

Developers cannot work around the choice made when upgrading to iOS 8, so please make sure you pay close attention to the iCloud Drive screen shown after you update to iOS 8.

Once you install iOS 8, you’ll be asked whether to turn on iCloud Drive. The simple fix: Pick “Not now.”

The iOS 8 update might affect more than just Clear, though.

Other Apps May Be Buggier After Updating To iOS 8 Too

Dropbox also discovered a “compatibility” bug for iOS 8 users. Last night, the company said

We’ve discovered that Apple’s new iOS 8 introduces a compatibility issue that may prevent Dropbox and Carousel from properly uploading your photos and videos. This means that only the contents of your “Recently Added” album will upload automatically.

If you upgrade to iOS 8, don’t delete photos or videos from your devices until you’re sure that your stuff has backed up to Dropbox. Please visit our Help Center for additional details on how to keep your stuff safe.

In essence, it explains that sending photos to the main Dropbox and Carousel services can be buggy, although the report seems pretty vague about the exact problem. Whatever it is, Dropbox says it’s working with Apple to fix it, but to battle confusion for now, it’s suspending automatic backup of photos and videos. 

There will likely be other issues that crop up—that tends to happen whenever new software gets publicly launched—so to be safe, you may not want to grab iOS 8 right away. 

But if you’re brave and rush to download it anyway—available for the iPhone 4s and later, iPad 2 and later, iPad mini and later, or the fifth-generation iPod touch—let us know how you find the new software. Deposit your disappointments (or joys) in the comments below. 

Lead image screenshot by Adriana Lee for ReadWrite. Clear app image courtesy of RealMac Software

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The Bathroom Lines At Tech Conferences Could Use Some Disruption

The gender makeup of tech conferences reflect the industry itself: mostly men. The bathroom lines at conference venues invariably bring that reality into stark relief.

At TechCrunch Disrupt, a gathering of startup entrepreneurs and investors, I haven’t had to wait to use the restroom for long. Throughout the day, the line to the men’s bathroom was regularly longer than the women’s. During the break in the morning’s keynote, I ran to the loo—and I didn’t have to worry about missing the next speaker.

This problem is not unique to Disrupt, which at least featured several women in Monday’s stage program, from TechCrunch presenter Jordan Crook to venture capitalist Aileen Lee and Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes.

At Apple’s WWDC conference in June, the audience was barely more diverse than the speakers on stage. In fact, Apple has only put two women on stage since 2007, neither of whom were Apple employees. The bathroom lines were imbalanced there, too: a long wait for men, and none for the women.

Photo by Selena Larson

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Could DuckDuckGo Overtake Bing?

Amid growing privacy concerns and a deal with Apple, DuckDuckGo has the potential to become a major player in search.

The post Could DuckDuckGo Overtake Bing? appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

View full post on Search Engine Land: News & Info About SEO, PPC, SEM, Search Engines & Search Marketing

Apple Event September 9th: “Wish We Could Say More”

Apple confirmed that it will be holding a special event on September 9th in its hometown of Cupertino. 

The company’s coy teaser, “Wish we could say more,” leaves us asking, what can we expect there? If rumors hold true, we’ll see new iPhones (which may include NFC mobile payments), iOS updates and even the long-awaited and hotly-debated Apple wearable device. Who’s ready?

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How California’s Smartphone Kill Switch Law Could Affect Everyone

After months of campaigning for smartphone anti-theft legislation, San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon got what he wanted Monday: Governor Jerry Brown signed Bill SB 962 into California law, making “kill switches” mandatory on all new smartphones. 

Starting next summer, all phones sold in the state must have a built-in feature that renders the device inoperable to strangers or thieves, and it must be activated by default. The idea is to discourage smartphone theft, a problem plaguing law enforcement across the country.

The issue may be particularly acute in San Francisco—where it accounts for nearly two-thirds of robberies; in Oakland, it’s three out of four—but according to Consumer Reports, a total of 3.1 million Americans were victims of smartphone theft in 2013, twice the number of the year prior. 

With smartphone crime becoming epidemic everywhere, other states are likely watching California intently now, possibly to follow its cue. To get some perspective on what that means for the everyday consumer, let’s start with some fundamentals. 

See also: Smartphone “Kill Switch” Now Mandatory In California

5 Things To Know About California’s New Kill Switch Law

Interpreting the law can be tough for any layperson. But in this case, it boils down to a handful of basics: 

(1) Only California requires that kill switches are enabled in new smartphones by default, for now. (Kill switches are also mandated in Minnesota, but users must turn it on themselves.)

(2) The law only applies to smartphones, not tablets or any other devices.

(3) The law won’t take effect until next year. Phones sold after July 1, 2015 will be legally required to comply.

(4) Retailers or other companies could be penalized as much as $500 to $2,500 per gadget, if they don’t comply.

(5) Wireless association CTIA is opposed to this law. Its position: Kill switches give hackers another way to mess with people’s devices. But skeptics believe the group is just trying to protect its member companies—the smartphone makers and carriers who profit from replacement phones.

Jaime Hastings, the association’s vice president of external and state affairs, said in a prepared statement, “Today’s action was unnecessary given the breadth of action the industry has taken.” He’s talking about the group’s Smartphone Anti-Theft Voluntary Commitment, a promise that some tech companies and carriers have made to make free anti-theft tools available to users.

Smartphone titans Apple and Samsung both offer security features that block locked (read: lost or stolen) iPhones and Galaxy phones from being reactivated, unless the user enters the registered owner’s proper credentials. 

These are essentially the same kill switches California state legislators want, with one major difference: They aren’t loaded and turned on by default. So if users don’t take action, the features do no good.

A Potential Can Of Worms For Everybody

Hastings also said something else worth pondering:

Uniformity in the wireless industry created tremendous benefits for wireless consumers, including lower costs and phenomenal innovation. State by state technology mandates, such as this one, stifle those benefits and are detrimental to wireless consumers.

He has a point. If some states adopt this law, but others don’t, maintaining compliance whenever devices cross state lines could be a nightmare of complication and expense for tech companies and carriers. The next logical question is who would cover those costs? Likely you and me, the consumers. Think extra fees, inflated retail prices or both.

In that light, Hastings comments could be taken as a veiled threat, though a lot would depend on the execution. A few extra cents might be fine, a small price to pay for peace of mind. As someone who experienced a snatch-and-grab recently, I’d gladly sacrifice a couple of dimes if it means I don’t have to walk in fear with a white-knuckled grip on my phone. 

See also: A Thief Snatched My iPhone—And I Learned A Lot About Smartphone Crime

The big question is whether these companies can be trusted not to play fast and loose with fee-gouging shenanigans. After all, policing all those transactions would be difficult, to say the least. And cell phone bills are already indecipherable. (Do you know what Administrative Fees, County Gross Receipts Surcharges, Federal Universal Service Charges, MTA Telecom Surcharges and numerous other enigmatic fees are? Neither do most people.) If companies wanted to make up for some of their lost profits, who’d notice a few other charges hiding in there?

Some folks might save the lump sums that would’ve gone to replacement devices, but over time, everyone’s wallets could suffer a death by a thousand cuts. Hopefully things won’t go that far. Because it would mean, en masse, that people are just trading one type of victimization for another. 

Lead image by zombieite

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Does Your Website Support HTTPS? If Not, Your SEO Could Suffer. – Entrepreneur

Does Your Website Support HTTPS? If Not, Your SEO Could Suffer.
Shall I go on? Web security, if you can't tell, is increasingly critical. And now Google says so, too. The search giant will begin factoring a site's security in its site-ranking algorithm. In other words, if your site doesn't utilize the HTTPS secure

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Apple Could Launch The iPhone 6 On September 9

Recode reports that Apple has scheduled a press event on September 9 to unveil the new version (or versions) of the iPhone. 

For the last three years, Apple has introduced each new iPhone version in the fall, not counting a spring 2011 announcement in which Apple launched the device on Verizon. Prior to that, the Cupertino, California–based tech maker held its iPhone debuts in the June-July timeframe.

But if there’s an air of uncertainty around this exact September date, it’s because Apple usually invites a select group of journalists all at once. Thus news of an Apple event typically propagates immediately across Twitter accompanied by images of invitations confirming the details.

This time? Nada. Still, there’s no particular reason to doubt Recode, which has a solid track record with scoops like this. Its report also parallels earlier rumors that pegged a mid-September timeframe for the announcement.

I’ve contacted Apple and will update this post if the company responds.

The iPhone maker is expected to reveal larger smartphones this time around: a 4.7-inch display and a next-generation A8 processor, along with another 5.5-inch version launching later. If true, this would be the company’s first “phablet” (or smartphone with compact tablet proportions). The event may also deliver the long-awaited Apple wrist worn smart device—likely either a fitness band or smartwatch, if in fact it exists at all.

UPDATE: The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg have both thrown their backing behind the September 9 date, citing unnamed sources who are in the know about Apple’s plans. 

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Apple’s Abrupt Mac OS X Change Could Block Many Apps

Apple told developers Monday afternoon that many of their older Mac applications may not run in the next update to Mac OS X unless they “re-sign” them using a digital-signature tool in OS X 10.9 Mavericks, the current version of the Mac operating system. Many developers aren’t happy about the abrupt change:

The change affects all Mac applications built on older versions of Mac OS X—specifically, any version that predates Mavericks, which officially launched last October. As of the next release of the desktop operating system—that’ll be OS X 10.9.5—those apps may simply no longer function until their digital signatures are updated using a tool in Mavericks. (These apps also may not function in future versions of OS X, including beta versions of OS X 10.10 Yosemite.)

Update, 6:56pm PT: Programs with older digital signatures may simply trigger a security warning for users. At least, that’s the gist of an explanation that Apple apparently sent to developers earlier on Wednesday, per this report in the The Unofficial Apple Weblog:

Signatures created with OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.5 or earlier (v1 signatures) will be obsoleted and Gatekeeper will no longer recognize them. Users may receive a Gatekeeper warning and will need to exempt your app to continue using it. To ensure your apps will run without warning on updated versions of OS X, they must be signed on OS X Mavericks 10.9 or later (v2 signatures).

A large number of common apps could be affected by the change; see below for details.

Sign Me Up

Apple requires developers to digitally “sign” their applications, ostensibly for security reasons. Signing an app vouchsafes it as the creation of a given developer, and lets the Mac operating system detect any changes to its underlying code. (Apple explains the process in more detail in its official code-signing guide.)

Pre-Mavericks versions of OS X used an older code-signing technology that produced what Apple calls “version 1″ signatures. OS X 10.9.5 and future OS X versions will require “version 2″ signatures, which require the use of the “codesign” tool within Mavericks.

It’s not clear how much time developers have to re-sign their older applications. Apple hasn’t said when Mavericks 10.9.5 will launch; it just released the first 10.9.5 beta last Wednesday.

Caught In The Digital Dragnet

If developers don’t act quickly, large numbers of common apps could be affected. Developer John Bafford published a command-line script on GitHub Gist that identifies the signature version of all programs in a Mac’s applications folder. It looks like this, in case you’re curious:

I ran the command on my Mac and found almost 50 applications with version 1 signatures, including Apple’s iMovie, iPhoto, iTunes, Numbers, Pages and Keynote. Other affected programs include Microsoft Office 2011, Adobe Reader, Dropbox, Google Chrome, Firefox and Evernote. (Oh, and Minecraft, too.)

I don’t have many apps from smaller developer teams on my machine, but I wouldn’t be surprised to find lots of them with version 1 signatures. What’s more, big companies have the resources to re-sign and update their apps well in advance of the release of OS X 10.9.5; smaller developers may be much harder pressed to do that in time.

I pinged Apple PR for further explanation of the announcement, and will update if I hear back.

Lead image by Flickr user ishmael daro, CC 2.0

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