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Daily Archives: July 28, 2022

Music Video: Fire And Rain

Charts: China Car Export

Western Europe and Southeast Asia became the main destinations for China’s new energy vehicle (NEV) exports, accounting for nearly half of all cars sold overseas during the first six months this year, according to the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA).

China exported 362,200 NEVs in the first half, more than double from the previous year, Cui Songshu, secretary general of the CPCA, said over the weekend citing customs data. Exports to Western European countries reached 122,700 autos, accounting 34% of total exports, while sales to Southeast Asia came to 58,400 units, or 16% of the total, Cui said.

Source : Bloomberg and Caixin


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Incognito Mode Isn’t As Incognito As You Might Think

Thorin Klosowski wrote . . . . . . . . .

You’ve seen the prompt: If you’re using a shared or public computer, use incognito mode. It gives you a sense of security knowing that whatever sites you visit or passwords you type won’t be saved to the device—like skulking around in an invisibility cloak. But of course, nothing you do online is invisible. Private browsing (aka incognito mode) is a great way to prevent your web browser from saving what you do. But to call it privacy-focused is a stretch, and while your browser or device doesn’t log your movements in its history and cookies, that doesn’t mean the sites you visit don’t clock your behavior. Despite its name, you’re not really incognito, and you may want to dial back your confidence in what these modes really do.

What is incognito mode?

Every browser seems to use a different name for this type of browsing. Chrome calls it Incognito, while Firefox and Safari call it Private Browsing, and Microsoft Edge calls it InPrivate. But they all essentially do the same thing: They forget everything you do when you use them. This means your browsing history isn’t saved, and nothing you do gets logged for autofill purposes.

It also means cookies aren’t saved. Cookies are an essential part of web browsing that, among other things, enable you to stay logged into a site. They also enable sites to store your shopping cart history or the times you’ve visited the site before, which helps the site choose whether or not to bother you with newsletter sign-up prompts or those cookie opt-out requests. Cookies have also long been an important part of the third-party advertising world.

What is incognito mode for?

Private browsing is great for low-stakes searches that you don’t want showing up in your browsing or search history. It’s useful if you’re borrowing someone else’s computer and don’t want your search saved, shopping for gifts on a shared computer, researching medical issues, or searching for something stupid you just don’t want someone else using your computer to stumble upon.

But there’s a false sense of how private these modes are, which can be problematic in cases where it’s crucial you remain truly private.

What is it not good for?

Browsing the internet leaves trails of data everywhere, and companies have built ways to track what you do regardless of cookies and browser history. Google was sued in 2020 for tracking people through its various services, even when people used an incognito tab. Files you download and bookmarks you create are typically saved on your computer during private sessions, and they are not wiped once you end your session. Your IP address, which reveals your general location and can be tied back to your device, may still be tracked on whatever site you visit. Device fingerprints, which collect seemingly innocuous details such as the type of computer you have, what browser you use, or the screen resolution on your computer, can be packaged together and used to track you. Your internet service provider can also see the sites you visit, and if you’re using the internet at work or school, those network administrators may have that same level of access.

And don’t forget: If you log in to any service (such as Facebook or Google) in a private browsing window, that session is no longer private, as the companies are able to match your habits to your registered account, giving them the same access to what you do online for the course of that browsing session. Any data you store on a third-party service during this session—files, photos, contact information, appointments, and more—can also potentially be accessed by the company hosting the data if you’re logged into an account.

The best way to think about private browsing modes is like this: Private or incognito browsing avoids leaving a history of what you do on your own devices. They’re useful, but mostly limited to removing the threat of someone with physical access to your computer seeing what you’ve been up to. Everything you do during that supposedly private browsing session may still be tracked by companies on the internet.

You can combat some of this tracking with browser extensions, but some browsers disable those extensions in private browsing modes. A trustworthy virtual private network can also provide a potential layer of privacy, though an untrustworthy one may still leak or monitor that data. It’s worth considering a browser that focuses more on privacy by default, like Firefox, Safari, or Brave, instead of Chrome or Microsoft Edge. And for searches, use a search engine like DuckDuckGo, Brave Search, or Startpage instead of Google or Bing. But know that even when you do everything as privately as possible, it’s unlikely that you’re truly anonymous. If you’re searching for information that is critical to keep private, use Tor Browser, which helps cloak your location, doesn’t save your history, and removes most tracking.

One privacy tip: Change your default search engine

Aside from being one of the most privacy-invasive products Google makes, Google Search also kind of sucks these days. Results are buried deep down on a page, various boxes of irrelevant or incorrect information fight for your attention, and every link seems to lead back to another Google product. It’s time to switch to something different.

Instead of Google, I prefer a more privacy-focused option like DuckDuckGo or Startpage, both of which give you results up top without confusing ads or Google-specific products. To make these easier to use, you should change the default search option so your browser uses your preferred search engine when you type a search into the URL bar:

  • Chrome: Click the three-dot icon > Settings and select the Search Engine tab.
  • Firefox: Click the three-line icon > Settings and select the Search tab.
  • Safari: Click Safari > Preference and click the Search tab.
  • Microsoft Edge: Click the three-dot icon > Settings > Privacy, search, and services > Address bar and search.


Source : Wirecutter

Chart: The People Most Likely to “Borrow” Their Neighbours’ WiFi

Source : Statista

Bridesmaids Go Professional in China

Fan Yiying and Gu Peng wrote . . . . . . . . .

Xie Yuke has attended over 40 weddings in the past two years and is now making a living from it.

The 22-year-old has flown more than 140,000 kilometers and traveled around China working as a professional bridesmaid.

It’s a fast-growing industry in China and is “expected to grow by 25% to 30% a year,” Cao Zhonghua, an expert at the Chinese Traditional Culture Promotion Council, told state broadcaster CCTV Wednesday.

COVID-19 travel restrictions have made it hard to find friends able to travel to weddings, while some couples complain they can’t find friends that are up to the standard.

A bridesmaid needs to be unmarried, Xie told Sixth Tone on Monday, and it’s important not to be taller than the bride. For aspiring professionals, 155 cm-173 cm is a good height, she said.

“The epidemic is a double-edged sword,” Xie said. “On the one hand, some couples are delaying their weddings, and on the other, many brides’ friends cannot travel due to the epidemic,” she added. Overall, it’s helped the industry.

It’s currently the off-season due to the hot weather in many parts of the country, and she expects the peak season to occur during the National Day holiday in October.

Before becoming a professional, Xie was a bridesmaid for relatives three times. She’s critical of her performance as an amateur: she didn’t know the process, and she didn’t know how to organize games to set the mood.

A couple of years ago, however, she saw an ad for professional bridesmaids and decided to give it a try.

At a wedding, Xie usually pretends to be the bride’s best friend or a classmate. The couple generally cover the travel and accommodation costs. A typical daily rate is between 500 and 2,000 yuan ($74-$296).

When she’s working, Xie gets up at 4:30 a.m., gets dressed, and does light makeup for herself. Then she goes with the bride to take photos, change clothes, provide entertainment, and toast guests until the banquet ends at around 8 p.m.

Professional bridesmaid and groomsman agencies have emerged as a result of the growing demand. The founder of a rental bridesmaid and groomsman service company based in Hangzhou said that the number of registered members on its platform had grown from a few thousand in February when it was just established to some 50,000 at present, state broadcaster CCTV reported Wednesday. On average, the platform has received 10-20 orders per day during the past month.

Xie met her current boyfriend at a wedding, where they were working as a professional bridesmaid and best man. He’s promised to make her the happiest bride. “We will hire 24 groomsmen and bridesmaids,” Xie told Sixth Tone.


Source : Sixth Tone