March 29, 2012

No Excuses

Gymnast Johanna Quaas shows you how it's done.  Oh yeah, she's 86 years old!

And if the floor routine isn't enough to convince you, here she is on the parallel bars.

I found an interview they did with her. It's in German, so I can't understand a word of it. However, listen to her voice.  That sounds like a woman half her age.

If you'll excuse me, I'm now going to sit in a corner and weep quietly because even when I was a kid, I didn't bend like that. heh.

H/T Deadspin

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March 27, 2012

Stuff Going on in the World

I want one!

Pizza joint creates one-push wireless order button

I'm all about less work and this is about as "less" as you can get! When is it coming to the states and where do I have to move to get it? I know it won't be in this area for at least 20 years after the rest of the world gets it. (New Englanders will be screaming about how it will endanger your children - ha)


Eagle cam!

First Egg Hatches On Decorah Eaglecam

Warning Will Robinson! Turn down the sound on your computer! The mike is active and when the wind is blowing it's really really loud!  Also it's a real live nest of real live Eagles. There is currently half a fish sitting on the nest along with the mother eagle.  You've been warned.

If you want to go directly to the cam go here.


On a more serious but hopeful note

Injection saves lives for heart attack patients: study

After reading the article I can't decide if they mean "injection" or if they mean "IV". It's a bit unclear. But hey, if it works, I'm all for it.



'Twist-O' toy inspires collapsible 'buckliball'

I'm thinking a structure that pulls itself inward during severe weather.  Then again I don't think outside the box very well. heh.


And last of all

Could eating chocolate make you thinner?

I am willing to experiment to help the cause!

Have a great evening.

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March 25, 2012

When To End An Interview

I spotted this headline today.

Lawmakers Call for Investigation of Facebook Password Requests

Employers are asking for username/passwords for facebook? I assume it must be happening somewhere although I am not interviewing for jobs, so I have no person experience of this phenom.  Still, I find this a stunning invasion of privacy!

My immediate reaction:

The interview ends the minute someone asks for any username/password for any personal account.

Yes, I will stand up, thank them nicely, and say "It's been interesting talking with you. Thank you for your time. Good bye."  This would hold true whether or not I had an account on the social media site.

You may think it's a bit extreme.  You may, if you've been looking for a job for a long time and are desperate, think it's cavalier of me to say this.  You may think... "but you're leaving them with the impression you have something to hide!"

That is exactly the reaction they are counting on. You need to turn your thinking around!  If you give them the passwords, you have put someone else in control of your online data.  We will return to this in a moment.

First I need to state this: an employer is perfectly within their rights to dig around on the internet and find any information that has been made public about you.  They can find public facebook postings (which is why you should be very careful what your friends post about you or what pictures your friends tag you with on facebook), twitter feeds, blog posts, linkedin posts, and any other publicly available internet information.  I have no problem with a company researching an employee before hiring them. Just as an employee should check out a company prior to the interview.  Therefore, public data gathering is not the problem.

There are several problems with employers asking for your login credentials to any of the social media sites. 

First and foremost, it violates laws already in place regarding what an employer can ask you about your personal life. With access to a social media site they know about your marital status (okay so they might know if you are married but they aren't supposed to ask about your life with your spouse), your parental status, possibly your sexual orientation, even your political ideology.  All of which are not  part of the job interview last time I heard.

Then there is the problem of someone else having control of your account.  This is the one that is most disturbing.  Here are just a few of the questions to ponder. 

Who gets the login info? who does the looking? how do you know they won't change anything while logged in? how do you know they aren't using your account to find information about someone else? what information might they copy that you consider "private"? what will they do with any info they find on your site? what do they do with the login info once they have looked at your site?

The last question is the least important since giving away your login info is like giving away the keys to your house, now the only thing to do is change the lock (in this case, the password).

They've been on your account and gotten whatever information they wanted, what's to stop them from logging in again? what's to stop them from using information they gathered while on your site in a detrimental way?

The list could go on for pages, but if none of the above bother you... then maybe you are a good fit for the company.  

Something else that bothers me is knowing that one set of login credentials is often used over and over by unsophisticated computer users. Therefore, facebook login credentials could give the company access to things like credit card accounts, bank accounts, health accounts... and this is just for an interview‽  (I was listening to Grammar Girl and just had to use the Interobang here)

While the request and its ramifications are mind boggling, I don't believe new laws are needed.  The current laws covering what employers can do during interviews should be sufficient. However, it may need to be emphasized that these laws cover social media as well as other aspects of personal life.  So, it's a good thing to bring this to the attention of the public. People need to know why they shouldn't say yes to this request.  But, I see no reason to pass any specific law for "social media". 

So keep your passwords to yourself.  If you have ever given out a password even if it's for purposes of getting tech assistance.  It's time to change it and change any other site that uses the same password.

This has been a public service post.  We now return you to our regularly scheduled navel gazing. 

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March 21, 2012

News You've Been Waiting For

Because I really have to share these things.

Branson says Kutcher is space line's 500th client

Maybe he could go colonize Mars and make really bad camera commercials there instead.

'Angry Birds' blasts off into new frontier: Space

So are they after Kutcher? Or did pigs finally learn to fly?

Pirate Bay plans to build aerial server drones with $35 Linux computer

This makes me think... maybe Hollywood is getting its birds/actors in a row to shoot down The Pirate Bay when it goes aerial.

Kraft to rename snack unit 'Mondelez'

Oh excellent - a flop in the making.  Stock up on Oreos people. 

In my non-news story of the day. I have found some dissolving Calcium to take.  I hope it works because I am tired of trying not to choke to death on those horse pills they pass off as calcium tablets.

That would be it for tonight.  Don't you feel at least 5% smarter?  Oh well, at least I don't think this news makes anyone feel any dumber.

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March 20, 2012

Some Hopeful Tech News

I hope everyone had a terrific St. Patrick's Day weekend. It was certainly lovely in the Boston area.

I've been busy playing with Virtualbox and the Fedora Linux distro. For some reason the two won't play nice on my Windows machine so it's been taking up a bit of time. I may skip Fedora and move to Ubuntu or Mint.

I have to say there are so many people who put up youtube vids on this stuff. It saves so much time to see a walk thru and try to catch problems before they start. I think my issue with Fedora is the desktop client it wants to use. We shall see.

Anyway, if my last post left you feeling somewhat depressed, go read this - which is ultra cool.

Robotics Trends for 2012

We may get our robots and Star Trek future yet.  I have been hearing about the 3D printer... now that would really be something - very cool!  

Keep inventing stuff people!

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March 15, 2012

New Tech Should Spring Forth Fully Formed and Functional!

I came across this article today.

Researchers send 'wireless' message using neutrinos

Of course I read it because it's one of those articles that makes me believe Star Trek was really a show from the future and we might just get there someday...

Then, because I am an idiot, I read the comments.  OMG the comments!!!  A few were funny, some were impressed or at least interested that some sort of research was going on. 

But others... there are always the others. The whiners.  They want to complain about price. They want to moan about the equipment not being able to do the job. They want to mutter about idiots doing stupid experiments.

Apparently all the tech we have today sprang up fully formed and ready to sit on our desktops.  All cell phones have always been like the iphones or Androids you see now - never were they the size and weight of a good sized brick.  All computers were always sitting on the desktop with nice thin screens. There was never a computer the size of a small house that wheezed along by reading punch cards and trying to calculate a few equations so we could send men to the moon. 

It's disturbing to see people so hell bent on telling us not only that it won't work, but that the scientists were stupid to even try it.   The saddest part is, these morons have built their case on a blurby little blog post that dumbs everything down so the semi-literate layman can claim to understand some of what is going on.  From there the critics feel free to tell us why it will never work. 

I shall never have my Star Trek future because these idiots have no dreams and therefore want to make sure no one else has them either.  Because... dreams are stupid and they'll never work.

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March 13, 2012

I Wonder if We Should be Worried

Sun flips the bird in new NASA photo

'nuff said...


Experts sound worm alarm for critical Windows bug

Windows has a bug??? OMG!!! Whatever will we do?

Oh yeah... patch please.


Grenade-throwing robot to fight fires on ships

After reading the story, I'm not exactly sure where the grenade throwing comes into the picture. I kinda doubt they fight ship fires with grenades... or at least I hope they don't!

Or maybe they need to get together with the people who know:

How to make ethical robots


And for those who are directionally impaired

App uses Wi-Fi to plot the way for mall patrons

Now if only it would find that perfect fitting piece of clothing...


Happy Tuesday!

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March 12, 2012

Posterous Bought By Twitter

The big news this evening...  that Posterous is now a part of Twitter.

I have my iphone photo blog on Posterous. (Technicalities to Go) although I haven't been posting much of anything lately.  It's dead easy to post using only an email then it will send out messages via twitter, facebook, flickr, etc, etc, etc.  Can't hardly beat it.

Guess it's wait and see time.  I do hope it doesn't go away.  If it ends up being dissolved I'll be very unhappy.  That's the blogging life I suppose.

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March 11, 2012

To Get you Warmed up for St. Patrick's Day

Absolutely hilarious.  Of course I love the Border Collie... but still...

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March 10, 2012

This and That Again.

How much you want to bet they all end up shouting abuse at Facebook.

Washington woman finds husband's other wife on Facebook

OTOH it might be worth it to be on FB just to see who might be suggested as a friend...


Does this make school lunches illegal in places like New York where they have passed laws about unhealthy food in fast food restaurants?

'Pink slime' eliminated from fast food, but not school lunches

Or do schools get a pass because they aren't fast food restaurants so it's all okay.


False advertising?

iOS 5.1 Does Not Provide 4G on an iPhone 4S

AT&T may be in a bit of hot water here. Faster 3G is not 4G... and it really doesn't help your corporate image if you try to pass off one as the other.


For people who have been told that using Google's Chrome browser is a safer way to surf the net...

At hacking contest, Google Chrome falls to third zero-day attack (Updated)

All browsers have security issues. Therefore, the holes in Chrome should not surprise anyone. The difference between Chrome and other browsers... Chrome updates in the background without giving the user the option of when or if to update. There is also no "roll back". Some users are finding this to be a real problem when Google updates Chrome and it breaks their browsing experience.


And just in case you thought symphony goers were a nice reserved lot...

Fistfight breaks out at Chicago Symphony Orchestra

Will the newest quip now be, "I went to a fight and a symphony broke out"? 


Have a great Saturday.

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