Windows 11’s built-in video editor removes its biggest drawback

Windows 11 recently got Clipchamp, or at least the video editing app graced the latest preview build of the OS, and now one of the biggest complaints about the free version has been fixed.

Clipchamp – which was acquired by Microsoft in September 2021, and turned up for Windows 11 testers earlier this month, had a major downside in that the basic free plan only allowed for videos to be exported at 480p resolution.

That’s pretty crummy, of course, but now the free version has been upped to include unlimited exporting to Full HD or 1080p resolution, which previously required you to subscribe to the Creator plan (at the price of $ 9 / £8 / AU$ 10 monthly).

There are still benefits for paying a Creator subscription, of course, namely access to stock audio clips and unlimited cloud storage for your projects. Meanwhile, business plans furnish you with extra goodies including stock video clips and the ability to fully brand your creations.


Analysis: A quick change following Windows 11 debut, and a necessary one

It’s good to see 1080p exports coming to the freebie incarnation of Clipchamp, though really, 480p was a very low bar to set, and so this was a move that needed to be made.

It’s obvious enough that Clipchamp being introduced as a Windows 11 app in testing – presumably set to come to the OS later this year in the big 2022 update – brought a lot more attention to the program. And with the spotlight shining more intensely on that export limitation, and perhaps given initial tester feedback, Microsoft decided that the 480p situation had to change (we can but guess).

Clipchamp is, in effect, the return of Windows Movie Maker, giving casual users a built-in and convenient option to quickly edit video clips within Windows 11. However, having to pay for a decent resolution with the end result would’ve severely limited Clipchamp’s usefulness in terms of that positioning.

Via Windows Central

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Windows 11’s built-in video editor removes its biggest drawback

Windows 11 recently got Clipchamp, or at least the video editing app graced the latest preview build of the OS, and now one of the biggest complaints about the free version has been fixed.

Clipchamp – which was acquired by Microsoft in September 2021, and turned up for Windows 11 testers earlier this month, had a major downside in that the basic free plan only allowed for videos to be exported at 480p resolution.

That’s pretty crummy, of course, but now the free version has been upped to include unlimited exporting to Full HD or 1080p resolution, which previously required you to subscribe to the Creator plan (at the price of $ 9 / £8 / AU$ 10 monthly).

There are still benefits for paying a Creator subscription, of course, namely access to stock audio clips and unlimited cloud storage for your projects. Meanwhile, business plans furnish you with extra goodies including stock video clips and the ability to fully brand your creations.


Analysis: A quick change following Windows 11 debut, and a necessary one

It’s good to see 1080p exports coming to the freebie incarnation of Clipchamp, though really, 480p was a very low bar to set, and so this was a move that needed to be made.

It’s obvious enough that Clipchamp being introduced as a Windows 11 app in testing – presumably set to come to the OS later this year in the big 2022 update – brought a lot more attention to the program. And with the spotlight shining more intensely on that export limitation, and perhaps given initial tester feedback, Microsoft decided that the 480p situation had to change (we can but guess).

Clipchamp is, in effect, the return of Windows Movie Maker, giving casual users a built-in and convenient option to quickly edit video clips within Windows 11. However, having to pay for a decent resolution with the end result would’ve severely limited Clipchamp’s usefulness in terms of that positioning.

Via Windows Central

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Your biggest copy and paste issue could finally be fixed

A new free macOS app looks to finally solve one of the most frustrating issues plaguing users today when it comes to having to copy and paste text.

We've all been there – you've copied some text from a web page or word document, but when pasting it into a new location, the original formatting has caused it to suffer problems that range from a minor inconvenience to throwing off the layout of the whole document.

Now, Pure Paste looks to provide an end to this most annoying headache by pasting plain text by default, hopefully spelling an end to formatting issues across all your files.

Pure Paste

Available now from the App Store for free, Pure Paste looks to remove all formatting from any copied text, which now transfers to its new pasted location without any unwanted issues.

The app runs in the background, sitting in the macOS menu bar, and looks to replace the current (and rather over-complicated) method of pressing Command+Shift+Option+V for format-free pasting on a Mac.

On its App Store page, developer Sindre Sorhus noted that Pure Paste clears all formatting, including fonts, colors, bold, links, tables and more, with users also able to choose to manually clear formatting whenever needed instead of automatically via the menubar icon or a keyboard shortcut.

The app only focuses on text, staying clear of unrelated content such as files and images, and also ignores content copied from password managers. And whilst it does access your clipboard, Sorhus noted that it doesn't store any data, or even connect to the internet at all.

Despite being one of the most popular shortcuts for users everywhere, copy and paste still receives regular upgrades attempting to make the service better.

Most recently, Microsoft and Google were revealed to be developing a new set of Chromium APIs that will extend the functionality of the copy-and-paste feature across their respective web browsers.

Microsoft also boasts the Cloud Clipboard utility, which allows users to copy-and-paste items across multiple devices, including smartphones via the Microsoft-owned SwiftKey Keyboard for Android tool.

Via The Verge

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Surprise Windows 11 update fixes some of our biggest issues – here’s how to get it

Microsoft has just released a much-publicised Windows 11 update that finally brings Android apps to your PC, but the company has also slipped out a surprise update. Windows 11 Build 22557 brings some really cool new features – and addresses many of our complaints.

Unlike the recent update, which is available to all Windows 11 users, and had a blog post from none other than Microsoft’s Panos Panay, Chief Product Officer, Windows + Devices, Windows 11 Build 22557 has only been released on the Nickel Release branch. This is an active development branch that allows developers to get access to early versions of the operating system to help ensure their apps and products work well with the update.

Usually, we wouldn't pay attention to these kind of updates, but this one is noteworthy as it gives us an idea of what will be coming in Windows 11’s major update later this year, which is currently known as Windows 11 22H2.

It also brings some tweaks and fixes to Windows 11 that many of us have been waiting for since the operating system’s launch last year.

Start menu showing pinned apps organized into folders.

(Image credit: Microsoft)

New features coming to Windows 11

One of the biggest features that’s arrived in Windows 11 Build 22557 is the ability to drag and drop files onto an app in the Taskbar in order to quickly open the file in the chosen app. It’s a handy feature in previous versions of Windows that many people use every day, so the fact that it wasn’t included in Windows 11 frustrated a lot of users.

Adding app shortcuts to the Windows 11 Taskbar is also getting easier, as you’ll be able to drag and drop apps from the Start menu to the Taskbar, automatically pinning them there.

The Windows 11 Start menu is also getting updated, and will get support for folders. Again, this is a handy feature that has been present in previous versions of Windows, and its absence in the latest version was certainly perplexing.

Folders in the Windows 11 Start menu will can be created by dragging and dropping one app onto another, and these folders can be named for easier organization.

As we expected, Focus Assist is getting a big overhaul. In the new update, it’s now just called “Focus” and will allow you to easily mute notifications from some apps and start a “Focus Session” with a focus timer and calm music from Spotify. This allows you to minimize distractions when you need to focus.

Microsoft has also introduced a useful accessibility feature known as Live Captions which cleverly displays subtitles for any audio content you play.

Live captions (launched from Quick Settings Accessibility flyout) generating captions for a video playing in the web browser.

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Other tweaks include the ability to pin files to the Quick Access part of Windows Explorer (which yo can already do with folders), and integration between Windows 11 and services such as OneDrive and Office.com have been improved.

Snap Layouts for quickly organising your desktop have got a new design and animations, and the useful Task Manager tool has got a visual makeover as well to better fit in with Windows 11’s aesthetic.


Analysis: should you download this Windows 11 update now?

Windows 11 Build 22557 certainly sounds like a feature-packed update that will address many of our problems with the operating system. But how do you get the update right now – and should you?

As we mentioned earlier, this is a preview build for developers, and that means you can’t just go into the Windows Update tool and find it there.

Instead, you’ll first need to sign up to the Windows Insider Program and then choose to join the Dev channel. You can find out more about doing this at Microsoft’s Windows Insider website.

Once signed up, you should be able to download and install Windows 11 Build 22557.

However, we recommend that you think carefully before doing this. As exciting as the new features sound, because this is an early build there will likely be bugs and unfinished features that could cause problems for your computer.

So, for most people, we’d recommend holding on tight until the official release of Windows 11 22H2 arrives, which will be some time in the second half of 2022. This will hopefully give Microsoft a chance to iron out any problems, making the wait for these much-needed Windows 11 improvements worthwhile.

Via Windows Latest

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Oracle is lining up its biggest acquisition yet

Oracle is currently negotiating to buy healthcare tech firm Cerner in a deal that could be worth approximately $ 30bn, reports have claimed.

Citing people familiar with the matter, the Wall Street Journal said the potential deal will be Oracle’s biggest acquisition to date, almost three times bigger than the $ 10 billion acquisition of PeopleSoft that took place back in 2005. 

Cerner, which specializes in digitalizing medical records, has a market value of around $ 23bn, but adding the usual takeover premiums could send the price up even higher.

Arms race heating up

Founded in 1979 and headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, Cerner currently has 26,400 employees and annual revenue of $ 5.5 billion, according to data from Datanyze.

Oracle was founded in 1977 by billionaire Larry Ellison, who still owns almost half of the company’s shares (42%). Ellison stepped down as company CEO in 2014, handing off the baton to Ms. Catz and the late Mark Hurd, but is still the company’s CTO and chairman.

The deal would only solidify Oracle’s already strong presence in the healthcare industry, as it currently offers software tech for health insurers, healthcare providers, and public health systems. 

Buying Cerner would heat up the “arms race” with Microsoft, who is also showing increasing interest in digital healthcare tools. Back in April 2021, the Redmond software giants acquired AI company Nuance Communications for $ 16 billion.

Wall Street Journal also believes buying Cerner would help Oracle pivot more towards the cloud, a move that’s been getting plenty of praise from its investors and stakeholders.

Via: Wall Street Journal

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One of the biggest proxy service providers just launched a VPN

The web data platform and proxy service Bright Data (formerly Luminati) has announced the release of its new completely free VPN service.

BrightVPN aims to disrupt the traditional VPN market by offering the same features as paid, subscription-based VPNs while remaining 100 percent free to its users.

Also, unlike traditional VPN services, no email or account is needed to use BrightVPN which means its users retain complete anonymity.

BrightVPN

In addition to being completely free to use, BrightVPN requires zero technical skills and its VPN client can be downloaded, installed and used to further protect your privacy online in just 40 seconds.

The new VPN service stays true to Bright Data's mission to make the web more transparent to all by enabling users to reach any website, in any country while avoiding both regional and other reasons for site blockages. BrightVPN is powered by the company's extensive infrastructure which is currently used by more than 10,000 customers including several Fortune 500 firms.

By installing and using Bright Data's VPN, users become part of a larger crowdsourcing network that allows researchers and companies to easily access public web data for multiple purposes. However, as part of the company's commitment to transparency, BrightVPN allows users to see and control which sites are accessed by Bright Data with settings that allow them to control when they allow their IP address to be used and even grant or deny access to specific sites.

Users looking for an alternative to costly premium VPNs or less reputable free VPN services, can download BrightVPN here to remain anonymous online and protect their IP address from being tracked for commercial reasons.

We've also featured the best VPN, best business VPN and best proxy services

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Instagram could finally be fixing its biggest annoyance

After five years, Instagram is looking at bringing back the chronological feed, instead of one that sorts images by your interests in random order.

Instagram head Adam Mosseri was talking to the American Senate committee about child abuse on social media, mainly due to the whistleblower papers that were leaked by Frances Haugen.

Since 2016, users have had to scroll through their feed on Instagram, which shows posts in an order that’s been calculated by an algorithm. This generates a feed based on the content you’ve been looking at, what you’ve been commenting on, and who you’ve been following.

It’s why you will occasionally see a ‘Suggested feed’ of photos and profiles you don’t follow. However, many just want a feed of who they’re following and nothing more.

When will it arrive?

Mosseri’s confirmation of the chronological feed returning will be of big relief to some users. Many are still annoyed by not having control over what they see when they launch Instagram, instead of being brought to a feed that will show photos and videos from a few days ago.

It’s a feature that’s been long-requested, so now that there’s confirmation, many users wanted to find out when it would be arriving. But it looks as though it won’t be anytime soon.

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With no more news about the feature until early next year, we’ll have to make do with the algorithmic feed for now, as we have done for five years.


Analysis: Was there any need for it to go in the first place?

Instagram has been working on several features requested by its users. Recent examples have been the ability to post from a web browser or switching to a dark mode theme, which have been well-received.

However, not being able to control what you see on your feed has been frustrating for years, ever since it changed in 2016. Many users want to scroll through a feed from newest to oldest, and social media rivals like Twitter gives users the option for this, as does Facebook.

It can be argued that a chronological feed is more important for Instagram users, as photos and videos capture a moment in time. With the run-up to Christmas, you want to see the latest content from who you’re following, not a random photo from Halloween in your feed when you open the app.

It’s a welcome change of mind regardless, but there should have been an option for both in the beginning. However, let’s hope it appears sooner rather than later in 2022.

Via The Verge

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