News for the ‘tech’ Category

Alexa is coming for your Fridge

So we have a few Echos around the house – more as a novelty rather than really using as a tool. But this idea is just getting creepy. I really don’t want Amazon in my refrigerator

Posted: October 8th, 2021
Categories: tech
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Dubious at Best

We continously hear from politicians and the religious right (every time there is a school shooting, the topic surfaces) of the dangers of video games on children/youth. With 2020’s news cycle, the topic has obviously been pushed out of primetime for larger, more important issues.

Of note, while there certainly is a link between tv violence and youth impact, other forms of entertainment throughout history consistently fail to prove a strong correlation to youth behavior/psychology.

Video Games look more and more to be joining the realm of Music and Books as a force which fails to show correlation to aggression.

Yet another study from Stetson University (as a follow-up from another 2015 study from the American Psychological Association) shows again – no substantative link. “Dubious at Best”.

Consider this quip at the end:

“Games are now more important than ever for socialization, feeling autonomy and control during an uncertain time, and just de-stressing”

Game On.

Posted: December 31st, 2020
Categories: entertainment, kids, tech, tv
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Firestick Mafia

So this is just stupid on many levels (newsarticle out of Florida) where the Sheriff is announcing his department’s ‘take-down’ of what seems to be some sort of Amazon Firestick Mafia. This group of flea-market sellers were selling “Jail-Broken” Firesticks for streaming via Amazon.

Okay – “Jailbreaking” a firestick sounds like tech wizardry. Granted, jailbreaking really became prominent hacking vernacular years ago with the iPhone. That process was a bit more subverse – with resetting the idevice, installing other apps, security adjustments, pirating aps, etc. The process for ‘jailbreaking’ a firestick is literally clicking one box in the device’s settings – see below.

True – once you do this, you can install Kodi, VPNs, etc – but there is nothing ‘illegal’ about a Firestick that has this option (third party apps) selected.

The context here is what one does with the device once the portal has been opened. What irks me on this piece is how giddy the Sheriff is, announcing the take-down of these grandmas.

Also wild is the fact that there is a market for this. This group figured out how to click a menu item and were selling the device for 2x street value? A user not doing their research, but who wants to stream from the apps that can now be installed, is drawn to a pre-“hacked” version. I would be inclined to think that if they can’t figure out how to click this menu item to open the device’s streaming options, they probably won’t be able to figure out how/where to get the aps or how to use.

I’m not saying I support the jailbreaking or that I support the streaming with third party aps … I’m just saying this Press Conference is silly when you really look into the device and its settings. It’s not like we have the cartel here. Yes, a user is subvertting the proper channels to be able to view paid content – but why the hell does Amazon leave the option on the device? If they wanted to curtail/eliminate the activity, maybe they should make the option less simplistic?

And the fact that the Sheriff is holding a press conference to announce how they took down the granny cartel is a bit preposterous. He really seems giddy over his team’s sleuthing. The old addage of “Don’t you have better things to do” (I remember hearing my dad say that the few times he was pulled over) rings a little true here.

 

Posted: December 30th, 2020
Categories: crime, products, tech
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Day 193

This just in. Apparently the fridge is opened -on average this year- 31 times a day.

Posted: September 21st, 2020
Categories: Coronavirus Plague of 2020, tech
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Unboxing of Apple’s $700 Workstation Wheels (that’s $175/wheel)

Posted: May 6th, 2020
Categories: computers, crime, tech
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Let’s Party Like It’s 2009ish

Hmm. I do remember Windows 7 being a thing – but not quite like this. We didn’t have a party … wasn’t invited to one. Had either been a possibility in our limited social circles, I can’t say I would have participated.

Posted: October 27th, 2019
Categories: computers, software, tech
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2 Traveling Pro Tips

So – I travel a lot. Like 2-3 nights a week are in a hotel. Fortunately, my company is pretty good about taking care of me with this – I can stay in some nice hotels and have a per diem that is solid. We work hard, should be taken care of.

But 2 things that have been to mind recently that have made a difference considerably when traveling …

1 – Remember (and use) this IP address: 8.8.8.8. If you are using different hotels (sometimes under the same banner, ie Hilton), this address will reset any cookies that you had in your system and send you to the sign-in page if you are using the hotel’s wifi. Through the years, I have gotten hung-up consistently because the sign-in page I am trying to contact to sign in that night is still hung up on the prior night’s/visit’s stay in another city. Try 8.8.8.8 – it works well.

2 – Really only applies if you are a cord-cutter (we recently ended our 20 year contract with DirecTV and use the Firestick for HULU, Netflix, etc (it’s amazing … did my due diligence on this vs Roku, etc). Carry an extra streaming device in your bag! It’s like bringing your TV with you. You see, when I’m in a non-home city or from hotel to hotel – every market and TV and remote is different. Sometimes it is so fustrating to fumble around to find the ‘guide’ or channel you want … this is just plainly awesome. Plug it in, connect, BOOM! Your channels are right there and you have your handy voice-activated remote. Can’t say just how awesome this has been for me …

That’s all for today …

back to email.

Posted: May 21st, 2019
Categories: tech, travel, tv
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T Minus 2 months to Cut the Cord

… And this is why we are just about to complete the Cord-Cutting process.

We got 1 Gig speeds a few months back, an Eero mesh system about a month back, I rewired a few outlets around the house to prepare for Rokus, Ethernet, etc. Only step left is our media server setup, a receiver to purchase, some speakers for ceiling surround and patios. Then, just software packages – which I’ve already filtered.

Cutting the Cord gets less expensive/more competitive monthly. My satellite goes the other way.

Received this email this week:

Posted: December 15th, 2018
Categories: entertainment, tech, tv
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Life is Good

Posted: May 28th, 2018
Categories: computers, tech
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Origins of BlueTooth Logo

Posted: March 1st, 2018
Categories: tech
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A Crown for the Fight for Net Neutrality

If you haven’t heard … Net Neutrality was killed by the FCC.

How will it impact us? See Burger King’s genius video here. Sadly, this is how most consumers have to understand this important legislation … through a fast food analogy.

Posted: January 24th, 2018
Categories: tech, www
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Scam the Scammers

Ran across this earlier in the week last week – thought it was brilliant.

Be sure to add their email address to your contacts, then simply forward every scam email to said box. Delete. Done.

Posted: November 12th, 2017
Categories: computers, tech
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Walmart vs Amazon? Kidding Me?

Walmart is definitely sweating over Amazon – most retailers are. Latest stat I read was Amazon only held 14% of sales – so there is a much tougher road ahead. I hate that, but it is forcing retail to think creatively about the platform and new solutions. I think it is great for the consumer and it is fun to be a part of this as my career.

But Walmart?

The commercials are really cute and fun with the music and crap – but bottom line: they STILL CANNOT DELIVER.

I ordered online about a year ago, for ISPU (In-Store Pick Up) – and no dice. I showed up to pickup the video game I ordered for Elyce … had to walk to the back of the store, wait for help, and it had not been processed. Meanwhile, the product was on the shelf about 10 feet from us as we were at the ISPU desk waiting for resolution. Never Mind.

Fast forward to 2017.

Hearing a lot of news about WMT upping their game, getting things right, making it easier. Let’s give this another shot.

  1. It was a Sunday about a month ago, I went to walmart.com to order groceries. Can’t pickup today – try tomorrow. No thanks – what the hell is the point? You’re spending all of this money on ads, painting your buildings orange, have signs all around the parking lot … but NEXT DAY? I was in Seattle recently … Amazon does TWO HOURS.
  2. Okay, tried once again. Ordered some oil and a filter for the SUV (yes, I change my own oil. Long Story. And I’m Frugal, not Cheap). I digress. So ordered at about 10am on a Sunday for ISPU. No email stating ‘order complete’! But I had to go to get groceries and figured it would be ready by the time I was ready to check out. Nope. So I bought the stuff from the shelf, with my groceries. Got home. Changed oil. Ate dinner. Watched TV. Still no email. Cancelled order. Forget this crap.

Oh – and the cute cashier smiling on the commercial was not what I experienced at my Walmart – at any time. One was eating lunch with her mouth open, the other was missing many teeth (nothing wrong with that – just not the commercial), and the other time … well, I couldn’t find anyone for a while.

Walmart – you have a long way to go. Seriously.

Posted: October 24th, 2017
Categories: business, tech, www
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Finally Alive, deuxième partie

Okay … as soon as my computer was up a few weeks ago … it was down. Fatal System Error.

  • Tried Window Repair
  • Tried System Restore
  • Tried booting from USB
  • Tried booting from another hard drive (I have 6 connected to this monster, yo)
  • Tried unplugging everything (USB, drives, external, monitors [but one, obviously])

NOTHING.

Freakin’ got fed-up and purchased another SSD (1 tb) and reinstalled. Had a couple of days off, rewired everything on the desk, ensured cord management was tight, everything connected (now have a ‘server closet’ in the new house – where all of the automation hardware/hubs/external storage/printers — CONNECTED!). Also connected a Hue Strip to the back of the monitors – and with the help of DynamicHue, the lights will change colors based on what is on the screen. Sweet!

So – now I just have to transfer all of my old files from back-up and the old SSD and life will be somewhat back to normal.

Posted: September 1st, 2017
Categories: computers, tech
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Finally Alive!

Well – it’s been a little over a month now for my desktop computer to be alive. With the move, it’s been sitting in a box for some time now – along with a lot of other things. Slowly we are unpacking – tonight the beast was fired up in my new office area of the house.

Looking back at the calendar, I realized tonight that this whole process has been in one state or another since February! Wow. It’s been a long 6 months, folks. Will have more time to reflect as we get closer to the annual holiday update – but for now, we have more boxes to unpack this weekend.

Posted: July 28th, 2017
Categories: computers, home improvement, tech
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Remember AOL?

ah … my first email address was toelius@aol.com. The memories …

Posted: February 17th, 2017
Categories: computers, history, tech, www
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Dongles

Posted: November 5th, 2016
Categories: computers, tech
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Just 3K More Likes, yo.

3kMoreLIkes

Posted: August 9th, 2015
Categories: computers, religion, tech
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The Illusion of Beats

Most should know this already; however, an interesting read on the psychology of the Beats product. Very similar to Apple.

Good Partners.

255DD67300000578-2941305-image-a-65_1423150969991

Posted: July 1st, 2015
Categories: products, tech
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OS Share – July 2015

As a former Mac user (13 years sober) who sees a lot of glowing fruit logos on silver laptops at airports and Starbucks while traveling, I was pretty surprised to see this news regarding Operating System share. It seems OSX is still stuck in the single digits.

I realize that many Mac users boot into and use Windows (which seems really silly to me, but I digress); however, I would expect Apple’s OS share to be greater than shown below:

windows-7-reaches-60-percent-market-share-for-the-first-time-in-history-485763-2

 

 

As a matter of fact, Apple’s OS has actually DECREASED from 1992-94 levels of >10% …

Posted: July 1st, 2015
Categories: computers, software, tech
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Apparently I’m 55

So by using Microsoft’s new face-recognition software site, it tries to determine your age and gender using pictures you upload …

55dave

Posted: May 1st, 2015
Categories: computers, software, tech
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Jailbreak for iOS 8.1.x

I guess it’s been out for a while (I deleted my Jailbreak after 8.0 – but have REALLY missed it), but the 8.1.x Jailbreak can be found here.

You’re Welcome.

Posted: January 4th, 2015
Categories: tech
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Hail our Robot Overlords

An interesting video making the news today – while Amazon states their intent is not to replace human labor, it is interesting to see how few humans are in the video.

 

Posted: December 1st, 2014
Categories: consumerism, tech
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Mom Tweets herself off of Plane

And yet, another article which exemplifies the idiocy of fools mixing with social networks.

While reading this, I kept thinking “why the hell does anyone really want a minute-by-minute of her flight from Philly?”

Seems of all the social networks that Twitter is the most dangerous … it’s quick, impulsive, and easy. Those 3 things (plus its permanence) are a recipe for trouble.

Posted: October 10th, 2014
Categories: social media, tech
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Pirating Takes on Books

First was music, then Movies. Now it’s Books.

This article illustrates how students are ‘taking advantage’ of the technology to circumvent textbook publisher greed. Technology finds a way, right?

Once 3D printing becomes more prominent, things will really change.

Posted: September 18th, 2014
Categories: books, computers, school, tech
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Watch iOS Adaption as it Occurs

Pretty slick site where you can watch, live, iOS 8 (just released today) adaption.

iosAdapt

Posted: September 17th, 2014
Categories: software, tech
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Further Monster Maladies

If you are a regular here, you’ve already read me moan about Monster cables and HDMI. This video further reinforces the scam that Monster cables are. Definitely provides some hands-on evidence.

Posted: September 16th, 2014
Categories: tech, tv, video
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Fireworks via Drone

I’ve been eyeing the Phantom Drone for a few months now … really would be awesome with the GoPro. Came across the below video the other day, which shows you just how much this beast can change the game of photography.

Posted: July 5th, 2014
Categories: holidays, pics, products, tech
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A Build for Elyce

Gavin and I spent the morning building Elyce her new computer … He doesn’t look very thrilled here, because he is beginning to understand that this computer may actually be as fast as his own. He is EXTREMELY competitive (not sure where he gets that from), and wants to have the fastest computer in the house.

IMG_4908

 

Been wanting to do this for a couple of years now – build a computer with Gavin. After the day was through, he seems to understand the different parts that we worked with today: motherboard, RAM, Power Supplies, and Video Cards. Next time we build, I will work with him on selecting parts and watch him put together. Can’t wait for that.

Elyce’s computer specs:
– Intel Core i5-4670 3.4GHz
– ASROCK Z87-EXTREME4 ATX LGA 11 Mboard
– 8 gigs of RAM (Meh …)
– ASUS GTX760 Video Card

 

Posted: March 29th, 2014
Categories: computers, kids, tech
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iOS 7.0.4 Jailbreak …

available!

Posted: January 4th, 2014
Categories: tech
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