April 2011 iiNews
With the warm weather making way for a very welcome cool change, it won't be long until we're all rugging up to beat the chill. While you're dragging out your winter doona and booking in a flu shot, spare a moment to think about your computer's health.
Unlike the flu, computer viruses aren't seasonal and are passed around all year long. To boost your online resistance, back track to our How to fight a virus story. For extra supplements, head to the iiNet Blog for our spyware & other scams and avoiding malware posts.
For our friends with fetchtv, you'll be happy to know we've made some handy updates to your Set Top Box. iiNet and the fetchtv team also celebrated a special win at the recent Australian Telecommunications User Group (ATUG) Gala Awards in Sydney. We'll be adding ATUG's 'Innovations in Communications' Award for our fetchtv IPTV product to our trophy cabinet shortly. Hooray!
This month, we're amped about giving away a shiny new BoB2™ each day in May. We take a look at some bogus claims about bit.ly links floating around Facebook and explain why domain names are just about everywhere.
Until next month!
BoB2™ a day Facebook giveaway
Not long to go now! To make the countdown to the BoB2™ launch even more interesting, we're giving away one BoB2™ a day, every day in May.
Created by the clever folks from our iiNet Labs, BoB2™ combines everything we loved from the original BoB™, including plug and play phone and Internet, together with some extra special features like built-in touch panel answering machine, all packed into an even sleeker design. Check out our recent BoB2 update or head to iiNet Labs and register your interest now.
Now for that giveaway… To be in the running to win a shiny new BoB2™ with handset (valued at $279), head to our iiNet Facebook page and Like us. We'll be asking our Facebook fans a question each day from 1 May through to 31 May 2011. The first fan to pipe up with a correct response will have a BoB2™ coming their way.
For anyone with a touch of 'Royal Fever', channel flick your fetchtv remote over to the BBC for coverage on all things 'Will and Kate'. For the kids, keep them entertained over the weekend with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I and The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
Updates for your Set Top Box
We've released a range of updates to improve fetchtv Set Top Boxes. Most notably, one of these updates boosts the speed of many items like the Electronic Program Guide (EPG), so you can click and connect to cool content faster.
New look iiNet portal
We've given the iiNet portal (select the 'iiNet' tab from the main menu) a makeover and added some handy new features like your local weather, a listing of the Top MoviePlex rentals, plus the latest news (thanks to our friends from the ABC)!
It's been a busy couple of weeks for us over in the iiNet Freezone. On top of celebrating our 'Content King' making his way into iiNet's staff '10 Year Club', we've been working hard to bring you the following new clips and shows.
New Gaming Content - Day Netcast & Major League Gaming
Good news gamers! We've plugged in loads of cool content to keep you entertained.
It's the largest professional video game league in the world, and now it's a mouse-click away in the Freezone - Major League Gaming (MLG). Tune in for a glimpse into the Pro Circuit competitions and a look at how MLG brings together the best pro gamers and millions of aspiring players from around the world through this thriving community.
Professional StarCraft player, shoutcaster, and stand-up comedian Sean Plott's also joined the Freezone with his DayNetcast. Check in for daily webcasts as Sean offers his own whimsical mix of strategy, analysis, humour and life instruction.
Carmina Burana - Live WASO Event
Live & On Demand in Freezone this Saturday 30 April 2011 (from 7.30pm WST), comes WASO's next instalment from their Classics Series - Carmina Burana. Under the baton of Giancarlo Guerrero, WASO takes you on a European journey with 120 singers in the chorus. Tune into the WASO Channel.
The Mumbo Report
For mediaphiles and marketing types, you can now join Tim Burrowes from media and marketing website Mumbrella from the Freezone. Each episode of The Mumbo Report brings you into the discussion, with industry leaders and personalities, on everything under Australia's media and marketing umbrella.
support & services
Last month we saw that DNS stands for Domain Name System (or Service, or even Server). In short, a DNS translates domain names into an IP address.
What's a domain name?
A domain name itself is a series of characters that make it easier for people to find their way around the internet. You might have a better chance of remembering or recognising that http://www.iinet.net.au/ is the address of the iiNet website than http://188.8.131.52/.
Domain names also have a structure that helps tell you and your computer what's going on. For instance, domain names that end in ".au" are Australian, and if you see ".edu" then the domain belongs to an educational institution like a school or university.
But that's only part of the story. You can see domain names used in lots of different ways, like the address of a webpage or your mum's email address. Depending on what you're doing on the internet, a domain name might appear in lots of different forms.
When it comes to websites, a domain name makes up part of a URL (Uniform Resource Locator). A URL is the full address of a webpage - it's what you plug into a browser like Internet Explorer or Safari.
Looking at iiNet's URL http://www.iinet.net.au, it contains a hypertext transfer protocol (http) to start. The http part tells your internet browser that you're looking for a domain name instead of an IP address. While the following www.iinet.net.au is a domain name which points to a server where a website is hosted and where all the text, files and images (resources) for a page can be accessed.
Emails also rely on a domain name to work. Let's look at the email address JoePublic@iinet.net.au. Everything to the left of the @ describes who you are - JoePublic. Everything to the right of the @ describes where your email lives on the net (your domain).
Cyber scams, swindles, frauds and hoaxes can come disguised in all shapes and forms - we're talking banking fraud, identity theft, pyramid schemes, lottery shams, phishing, Nigerian spam, pranks and more. They can be tricky to spot at first, so this month we're looking at another popular ploy making the rounds.
Inaccurate Warnings Claim ALL 'bit.ly' Links Are Suspect and Should not be Clicked
We're seeing misleading messages floating around Facebook about bit.ly links. The messages ask folks never to click on them, with claims that they all point to nasty viruses, malicious websites or rogue applications. Some of these messages even go on to suggest that a friend sharing a bit.ly link has been hacked.
For those not in the know, bitly is a legitimate and pretty popular URL or web address shortening service. When you're using a micro blog like Twitter which gives you a limited character count for each post, using a shortened URL makes it easier to share. For example, the bitly version of http://www.hoax-slayer.com/bitly-bogus-warnings.shtml would be http://bit.ly/gr51j9.
While spammers and dodgy types often do use bitly links, it's not true that ALL bitly links are suspect. In fact, loads of genuine websites and organisations use shortened links every day. Check out SCAMwatch's Twitter page.
For those looking for extra homework, here's some extra links for supplementary information:
- Debunk or confirm shams with Hoax-Slayer or Snopes.com
- Learn from the experts at SCAMwatch and keep an eye on their SCAMwatch radar
- Pick up tips from our Discoveryzone on staying safe online
entertainment & competitions
April Movie Giveaway
The Wolf Pack is back. Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Doug (Justin Bartha) travel to exotic Thailand for Stu's wedding and their latest misadventure.
In the sweltering, chaotic city of Bangkok, things once again go horribly wrong and the Wolf Pack find themselves with missing memories and missing Stu's future brother-in-law, Teddy.
Thanks to Warner Bros Pictures, we're celebrating the Australian release of The Hangover Part II on 26 May 2011 by giving away 50 in-season double passes.
To put yourself in the running to score a double pass, email competitions with the answer to this question: Who is 'the most powerful man in the universe'?
Remember, we'll also need to know your username, full name and address too. Send your answer through with 'April Hangover Two Competition' in your email subject line by 5pm (WST) Wednesday 11 May, 2011.
Nice day for a white wedding with Sandy Lim
The Royals aren't the only ones getting married. This month, we've found some clever resources and guides for upcoming nuptials – a simple guide to wedding speeches, an epic planning webzine and some funny photos from real weddings.
Wedding Writer is a guide to the customary male roles at a white wedding. Aimed primarily at blokes, it offers straight-talking tips on how to prepare and deliver a tidy reception speech.
From engagement to etiquette, fashion to flight destinations, TheKnot ties together bridal planning with ideas, tips and resources, and a guide to keep track of your to-do's, guest list, budget and gift registry.
Funny Wedding Photos
Around the world, people are getting married and sharing their funny wedding photos. This blog is a collection of sweet and silly snaps; a reminder to future brides and grooms that even if plans do go awry, everything turns out all right in the end.