Lion of the Blogosphere

Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Free speech censoring

with 17 comments

This is an interesting foreshadowing of the coming suppression of rightwing speech from the internet.

While I don’t agree with the site that was banned, there’s obviously a slippery slope that could lead to the banning of the entire anti-establishment right. This website is just going to disappear (unless you know its IP address) unless they can find another DNS host, which is unlikely because neo-Nazis are now public enemy #1.

Internet companies, technically not government, but all aligned with the same globalist-SJW ideology, can just remove sites they don’t like, and technically it doesn’t violate the Constitution because they aren’t government, just private monopolies.


The Daily Stormer re-registered with Google, and then Google canceled the registration. Where will they go next? Is there any domain registrar that will take them? If another domain registrar does take them, will other internet backbone companies intercede and erase the the site from DNS servers?

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 14, 2017 at 12:27 pm

Posted in Technology

Smartphones are ruining Generation Z?

with 43 comments

That Atlantic has some pretty good articles when they aren’t writing about how much they think that Donald Trump sucks (which unfortunately has become the majority of articles at every mainstream publication).

Back to smartphones: No one knows how this will end. But perhaps, what my generation (X) considered a normal childhood was not normal by the standards of all human history. Throughout most of human history, kids were put to work as soon as they were old enough. So they didn’t have that much social interaction with other children their age, they were busy working at the direction of their parents and extended family.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 7, 2017 at 3:04 pm

Posted in Technology

Proof that DNC emails were an inside job, not a remote hack!

Do I understand the proof? Maybe not, but it’s ten times more detailed and therefore more believable than anything that the FBI or any other government agency has presented to back up their opinion that the emails were hacked by Russian government agents.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

July 10, 2017 at 9:06 pm

Posted in Technology

I broke down and paid for the NY Times

So I could read the liberal rag more easily on my iPhone and iPad using their app. Even though you can read it for free by using a private/incognito window in a web browser.

But… I took advantage of this special student offer.

Not a student you say? Well, their web page didn’t care, as long as I had a .edu email address, which I do, and I suspect most alumni also have one.

Also, it’s free for four weeks, so if I decide it’s not worth a dollar a week, I can always cancel before the billing starts.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 16, 2017 at 6:50 pm

Posted in News, Technology

Mobile phones and class

You have to be pretty stupid to think that they aren’t important class markers. And they are also very important status symbols for the bottom half of the population. That you can afford a $700 iPhone very clearly shows that you aren’t among the poorest of the poor. As you get wealthier, they say less. Obviously, if you are in the class where you are judging people by the cost of their summer homes in the Hamptons, then someone’s choice of a less expensive phone won’t be interpreted as an inability to afford a better one. But the choice of phone still does say something.

It’s pretty obvious that iPhones have more status than Android phones, and that “feature phones” (the euphemism for the dumb phones of the past) have the lowest status. There are lots of statistics out there which show that people who use iPhones are more likely to be college educated and have higher income. When I think of someone with higher income and a college education but who nevertheless uses an Android, I think of an Indian person working in the IT department. Most Indians are way too cheap to buy an iPhone when they can buy an Android with equivalent technical specs for so much less money.

I think that no matter what your social class, clinging to a feature phone gives off the vibe that you’re too stupid to figure out how to use a smartphone. Or if your income is in doubt, that you’re too poor or too cheap to get a better phone. My prole parents from Staten Island use feature phones. But I know wealthier people in the same age bracket as my parents who live in more affluent neighborhoods and use iPhones.

I’m not saying that any of this is how the world should be, I’m merely observing how it is.

If you think it doesn’t matter and that no one notices what kind of phone you are using, I would say that you are wrong. People notice your phone a lot, and they make judgments about you based on your phone. I even remember my former (female) boss mocking an employee (behind her back, of course) because she didn’t use smartphone.

In comments, some have put forth the theory that among the very highest class, things could be different. For example, it’s believed that among the highest class of people, it’s considered gauche to drive too expensive or too showy of a car. Commenters pushing this line of thinking have also proposed that having a smartphone means that you’re a corporate wage slave who’s required to always be checking his email and thus not your own man. (Although, remember, that among the bottom 98% of the population, having a job that’s important enough that you always have to check your email is considered a marker of high status and not of low status.)

But there’s just too much other stuff that a smartphone is good for to think that one could demonstrate higher social class by not having one. Upper class people could use their smartphones to check their stock portfolios and read the Wall Street Journal, which Paul Fussell would agree are upper class activities. Upper class people don’t like to waste time, and smartphones save you time with their more efficient voicemail retrieval and text messaging.

There’s a perception that iPhones are easier to use than Android (and having tried, in the past, to use both a Samsung Galaxy S3 and some Motorola Android phone, I share that perception of the iPhone being easier to use), and because the highest class of people wouldn’t want to waste their time learning how to use a more difficult phone, I predict that they would mostly be iPhone users.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 6, 2017 at 4:15 pm

Posted in Technology

iPhone cases

I don’t use one. They make the iPhone, one of the most sleek and beautifully designed artifacts of modern life, into a big ugly thing. I wish that Apple had made the iPhone 6 a little less slippery–indeed, the iPhone 5 was a lot easier to hold–but so far I haven’t dropped it in a way that damaged the phone.

But some annoying people give me a lot of flak for not using a protective case.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 3, 2017 at 8:17 pm

Posted in Technology

Web security reminder: block third-party cookies

Third-party cookies allow advertisers and other third parties who are up to no good to track what you are doing on the web. You don’t want that. In Google Chrome, go to Settings > Advanced > Privacy > Content settings and make sure that you check the box to “Block third-party cookies and site data.”

If cookies are so bad, why not block all of them? Well, if you want sites like Facebook or Twitter to remember you, then you need to keep cookies turned on, otherwise you will have to sign in every visit. That’s inconvenient, and you can always gain the privacy of browsing with only local data by using an “incognito window.”

If you select the option to “Block sites from setting any data,” then you won’t even be able to sign in because the site will forget you as soon as you go to another page. And it doesn’t provide any extra privacy, because the site could still track your session by your IP address. I definitely do not recommend this extreme setting.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 3, 2017 at 6:26 pm

Posted in Technology

ISP privacy

The Republican-controlled Congress reversing the Obama rules protecting ISP customer privacy is an example of Republicans reflexively and shamelessly bending over for big corporations using the simplistic formula: “big corporations=capitalism=free-market=good, government regulations=socialism=Marxism=bad.

ISPs have huge monopoly power and definitely should be regulated by the government so that they don’t abuse that power.

Yes, you are forced to deal with an ISP. In order to live a normal life in modern society, you need internet access, and most people don’t have a choice of more than two, and in many places only one. Until very recently, Spectrum (formerly TWC) was the only provider of high-speed internet in my apartment building.

Now more than ever, you should sign up for a VPN service like PIA and use it whenever you access a website that you wouldn’t want the FBI, the IRS, your significant other, your employer, or your mother to know about. But using a VPN has inconveniences. Many websites don’t work with VPN: they must be using third party security software that keeps track of known VPN IPs and rejects them, on the theory (no doubt true) that the vast majority of fraudsters are using a VPN.

Using a VPN requires technical acumen not possessed by the average ISP customer (at least that’s my experience with PIA). So the majority of people will not be able to hide their tracks from their ISP.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 30, 2017 at 1:27 pm

Posted in Technology

Free phone call with Google Voice and Google Hangouts

I just discovered that you can make free phone calls from your computer using Google Voice and Google Hangouts (of course you’ll need a headset or usb phone). Good to know!

It works best using the Chrome browser.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 27, 2017 at 6:03 pm

Posted in Technology

New Apple announcement

There is actually very little here.

There are two new overpriced “RED” versions of the iPhone 7 and 7+. Only difference is the color. Big deal.

The iPhone SE, the most affordable iPhone, is the same price but comes with twice as much storage as before, so 16GB is doubled to 32GB and 64GB is doubled to 128GB. This makes the iPhone SE even a better bargain than before, if you don’t mind a smaller phone.

The iPad Air 2 is replaced by a new iPad just called an iPad. It has an A9 processor instead of the A9X processor in the iPad Pro (but there’s only a very slight performance improvement with the A9X), but costing only $329 it’s a real bargain compared to the $599 list price for the iPad Pro (although I only paid $427.50 for my iPad Pro).

What do you get with the Pro that you don’t get with the iPad? Support for the pencil and keyboard, four speakers instead of only two, a better camera (as if you really are going to use an iPad as a camera), and a superior display with superior anti-reflective coating, but both models have the same pixel count. Also the pro is slightly thinner and lighter (0.96 pounds vs 1.03 pounds).

A very underwhelming announcement. The main takeaway is that Apple is making it’s entry-level iPad and iPhone less expensive than before while not changing anything about the more premium products.

* * *

Although the new iPad has a more advanced chip (A9 vs A8X) than the iPad Air 2 it’s replacing, it’s also thicker, heavier and loses the anti-reflective coating, so it’s actually a less deluxe cheaper inferior product.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 21, 2017 at 10:47 am

Posted in Technology

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