mobile devices

User: Abd allah Foteih / Flickr

By now, we've all pretty much heard about the hacking that left naked photos of dozens of celebrities spilling out over the Internet. Among them were Michigan-born supermodel Kate Upton and her Tiger pitcher boyfriend, Justin Verlander.

Not caring one whit about who's taking what kinds of pictures in the privacy of their homes, we wondered, how safe is the cloud when it comes to storing our files?

Kevin Fu is an associate professor in engineering and computer science at the University of Michigan and a nationally recognized computer security expert.

Fu says what most of us don't realize when we take photos on smartphones is that, there's really no delete button on the Internet.

"Although you might delete something on your phone, well, there are copies all over the place ... those boundaries don't really exist," Fu explained.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

College students should stop surfing the internet in class and start paying more attention to their professors. That’s the finding of a new report from Michigan State University.

Ever wanted to learn Ojibwe? Well, there’s an app for that.

The Ojibwe, also known as Anishinaabe people, make up one of the largest groups of Native Americans in the United States, with many living here in Michigan.

Darrick Baxter, president of Ogoki Learning Systems, helped design this free app that could go a long way towards keeping the Ojibwe language alive. 

Here's a video showing how the app works:

Listen to full interview above. 

Tony Buser, flickr / Flickr

Think of a recent purchase you made. Chances are pretty good that your mobile phone was somehow involved, whether you tracked down a store location, you checked out products and prices, or you even closed the deal on your phone. 

One survey done by a digital coupon website found that more than half the consumers it surveyed used their mobile device while they bought something in March of this year.

Or let’s talk dollars and cents, lots of dollars and cents. Mobile commerce transactions are expected to hit $1.5 trillion this year. By 2017 you can look for that to top $3.2 trillion. Clearly something big is going on and we wondered what’s in store for consumers and businesses as more of us trade walking through the door of a brick-and-mortar store to a few thumb clicks on our smart phones.

Mike Vichich from Ann Arbor is the CEO and co-founder of Glyph, a mobile app that lets you pay with your mobile phone and also keep track of what you’re spending. He joined us today.

Listen to the full interview above.

texting with a cell phone
Alton / Creative Commons

"Sexting," the act of sending racy messages or photos using a mobile phone, isn't a sign of moral turpitude, according to researchers from the University of Michigan's School of Public Health. They say the act is just a part of normal dating for young people.

Researchers surveyed respondents for their study, which will be published in an upcoming edition of the Journal of Adolescent Health.

From a UM press release:

University of Michigan researchers looked at the sexting behavior of 3,447 men and women ages 18-24 and found that while sexting is very common, sexting isn't associated with sexually risky behaviors or with psychological problems.

The findings contradict the public perception of sexting, which is often portrayed in the media and elsewhere as unsavory, deviant or even criminal behavior, said Jose Bauermeister, an assistant professor at the U-M School of Public Health and co-principal investigator of the study.

Previous research has been done to identify who is "sexting," but the UM researchers say this "is the first known study to connect sexting with a behavioral outcome."

They found nearly half of the respondents said they took part in sexting, and most people who said they received "sexts" also said they sent them. The results, researchers say, suggests sexting likely happens between romantic partners.

And it's not just young people, more older adults are participating as well.

From Sarah Gates of the Huffington Post:

A recent Harris Interactive poll found that one in five Americans sext or share racy text messages with others on their smartphones.

Sponsored by Lookout Mobile Security, the results of the 2,097 adults surveyed focused on a particular rising trend -- adult sexting. While the convention may be popular among text-savvy teens, sexting has become more prevalent among older generations, as one in 10 baby boomers surveyed admitted to sending or receiving explicit photos.

While sexting might be risqué, it's also risky (to which Anthony Wiener, Kwame Kilpatrick and several other politicians can attest).

No doubt, there are, or there will soon be, privacy apps for the behavior.

Michigan’s new ‘Texting While Driving’ law will get its first test in a fatal auto accident in Lapeer County.  The driver who allegedly caused the accident that killed a 78 year old woman was allegedly texting behind the wheel.