Showing posts from 2024

CNN Presidential Debate June 2024

That debate was bad. We can all agree.  But was it the end for Biden? Maybe.  Here's one way forward: take all the crazy crap Trump said and edit it into very targetted adds in swing (and also "not totally blue" states). Then run it 24/7, readjusted for focus group feedback until the election.  Senile beats crazy. Noone is really voting Biden at this point. It's a vote against Trump. Make it impossible for people with a shred of decency to choose Trump. Saturate ads, socials, and any other channel with this content. 

Windows Recall - privacy nightmare? This just seems crazy to me and a move designed to motivate corporate IT to prefer windows over Linux for the end user desktop so they can more easily prove people were doing the things they aren't supposed to be doing at work.  The problem with this is that it's a security nightmare. In addition to the obvious problems listed in the article, it's also a social engineering tool of epic proportions.  An intruder, viewing the Recall info in real time real time, has a massive leg up on the user in the most common form of scam: the calls pretending to be from "tech support" from your ISP offering to fix your computer. Does this seem far fetched? Combine robocalls, an AI LLM geared toward voice chat and motivated to get you to install a "tech support" program, and then a hand-off to a skilled con artist to complete the scam and you have a recipe for disaster affecting our m

Creating versus consuming

 Lately, I have really been limiting my viewing of media after a certain point each night, including reading, and especially consuming content on screens. I am still doing OK with audio content but more fiction and trying to go to music more often, but I do love a good audio book.   Why? I have a sleep disorder and my tracking of sleep quality indicates that nights when I play video games or watch shows before I go to sleep are nights I sleep poorly. There are other factors I also manage but they are not relevant to this post.   So now, starting an hour before bed, I try to make rather than consume. The form this is currently taking is building out an analog Zettelkasten (ZK). Sounds so pretentious, I know. But all it is, is tree of info organized as you file into it, using index cards.  So my routine is something like this: Begin relaxing by productive puttering - lights are turned off, dried pots and pans from dinner are put away, coffee is put on for the next morning (on a timer, I

3D printing has entered the chat

I have been using index cards a lot lately for note taking and other things so I picked up a 3D printed desk storage tray which also has a nice pen cradle. It's the first thing I own that I know was produced to this way.  This is an interesting development in my own personal journey but also in the progress of our technical capabilities. One of the aspects of technology I find most interesting is the progression of tech from theoretical to corporate to being used by average people in the home.  Computers made this progression very slowly. It took years and years. 3D printing saw this happen more rapidly. The casual use of nuclear power depicted by sci fi authors like Heinlein hasn't quite happened yet and probably never will but I do think CRISPR might be usable in the home. Maybe not in my lifetime but you never know. I'm imagining a biological 3D printer making a bespoke medical cocktail, for example.  Crazy? As crazy as me walking around with a computer in my

Update: Controlling My Inputs

Update to the original post: So far, so good. I HAVE commented on Reddit a couple of times regarding Google Sheets and that's about it. I also caved in and commented on Facebook a few times. I won't be doing that again unless it is a friend and I am sharing a laugh. The dust is settling here: I am using Readwise Reader now for my RSS and URL saving needs.  Inoreader is still great but Readwise just added better code around managing RSS feeds and so now it's good again. It can also handle ebooks, PDFs, etc. (meaning you can annotate them).  I had subscribed to a couple of RSS feeds for Reddit groups but trashed those today and added a single RSS feed for all my subscribed Lemmys. I'll see how that goes. I don't want to interact but I like knowing what's going on.  Finally, I am spending less time on apps, more time reading books. I like that.  

Annie Jacobsen interviewed by Lex Fridman

Lex Fridman Podcast: #420 – Annie Jacobsen: Nuclear War, CIA, KGB, Aliens, Area 51, Roswell & Secrecy Episode webpage: Media file:   Normally, not a huge fan of Lex as I find he can be kind of like a spaced out frat boy half the time and a little disrepectful to guests at other times.    He does have interesting guests on from time to time, though, so I do continue to keep him sub'd in the old podcast app.   This was a really interesting exploration of the intelligence community and the UAP subject with Anni Jacobsen. She's been writing about the intelligence community for a very long time and has some really interesting perspectives.    No, she won't tell you UFOs are real. If you think they are, that's up to you, but give her take a listen, it's very eye openin

Life: controlling my inputs

Yesterday I uninstalled all my Lemmy apps, and Reddit, and Bluesky (this one because I wasn't using it, anyway).  This isn't a "I closed my accounts" post. I still have them but I needed a break. I am a frequenter of two kinds of forums for lack of a better term: * the first is forums where I am talking to people who have the same interests as me. In practical sense this happens to be my chronic health issues (giving and getting advice and support) and also things relevant to hobbies and interests. * the second kind is mostly political stuff in some cases this blends over into the "technology" field. The trigger for me removing my apps was an article about how China was ramping up its semiconductor industry to compensate for the US having export controls and also doing the same ramp up domestically. I pointed out that in several conversations before, people have been unwilling or unable to accept the fact that China could possibly develop an internal semicon

Hard work is not always its own reward...

When I was younger, I worked as a cook. I started out in high school washing dishes and kept at it until I was making salads and desserts, then I was on the line. I eventually went to cooking school after high school and continued in that line of work until I had a health issue that prevented me from continuing. The job let me live in and explore some beautiful places but most of the time I was just working hard for long hours.   This is the first of what I think could be a series of blog posts based on the things I learned doing that job. It stands out in my mind because I was very excited about the culinary world when I was young and I wanted that to be my career, eventually leading to my own restaurant or perhaps working as an executive chef of a large hotel. I made it to sous-chef of a small restaurant by the time my journey ended. A lot of people glamorize the profession due to way its portrayed in the media. Watch The Bear for an honest look at the reality of the job.   The lesso

Article - Deep in the Amazon, researchers have uncovered a complex of ancient cities — using laser technology

Deep in the Amazon, researchers have uncovered a complex of ancient cities — using laser technology : > "Wow" was all archaeologist Stéphen Rostain could say when LiDAR (light detection and ranging) laser technology revealed several ancient cities hidden deep in the Amazon rainforest. I keep reading things like this. As technology is developed that can be used to look into the past, we continue to find surprising things about humanity that we previously hadn't considered.  There are discoveries every year that push further back into the past the first use of tools, of agriculture, of large civilizations in areas we thought were populated by hunter gatherers. Is there any way to know how far back we go? How could you possibly know you have found the "earliest" of anything? All you know is it's the oldest thing you've found. And there could be a lot of evidence of previous civilizations and technologies that are simply gone due to the passage of

Bitter cold

It is very, very cold here in Edmonton. Overnight lows will be below -50 Celcius. If you have never experienced cold like this, you will be very, very cold regardless of what you are wearing in a short period of time. That cold stays with you once you are back inside.  Now, consider the fact that there are people in this city living outside in this in tents. The sometimes will have two tents and some tarps over them which creates an insulating layer to trap body heat but we are talking about a cold so deep that best you are going to get in this situation is maybe -15 or -20 in the tent. Then next step is wearing as many clothes as you can get and wrapping in a sleeping bag, probably with your head inside the bag.  And you are still going to be cold.  So spare a thought for them. I am doing some research on the problem of homelessness in Canada. It seems like the public money being spent on this issue is under 5% of what would be needed. It seems like we don't really want to fix thi

Hearing - Eustachian Tube incident

OK, there have been several times in my life where I had a bad cold with a lot of sinus congestion and ended up not being able to hear much out of my right ear. It's like I have an earplug in that ear.  Apparently, this is a result of my Eustachian Tube being blocked. In the past I have coincidentally gone on a trip involving a flight or a drive into the mountains which ended up fixing the issue. This might sound like quite the coincidence but I have had this problem go on for several weeks each time it happened before.  This time, there was no trips planned. I did the usual googling of all the possible treatments. I was massaging below my ear, trying to force air into my sinuses, sipping water while holding my nose, chewing gum, and so on. Nothing worked.  I eventually decided I would try a nasal decongestant. I really don't like them but I did try this eventually and it worked. At the end of the third day (today) the problem cleared up.