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Topics - Brad

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Traffic / DuckDuckGo Switches to Apple Maps
« on: January 16, 2019, 01:59:33 PM »
DDG has switched to Apple Maps in their search results.

I assume they were using Bing maps before.

Long term this is a wise strategic move.

1. At some point Google's privacy issues are going to make it hard for Apple to use Google as a default search engine.  It's just a matter of time.

2. While Apple may not dump Google overnight, they can do things like offer choice of default search engine to users upon setup of new devices.

3. By using Apple maps, DDG makes itself an easier choice for Apple to include as a potential default.

4. By moving away from Bing maps it strengthens DDG's privacy chops.

5. With poor iPhone sales, Apple is going to be looking at strengthening marketing advantages over Android.  Increasing emphasis on privacy is a hook Apple can use.

6. Long Longshot: Apple may go shopping for a search engine of it's own.  They certainly have the cash to buy DDG.

Traffic / I Felt a Disturbance in the Google
« on: December 19, 2018, 12:46:42 AM »
The difference between Google and Bing in this case is consistent with something Iíve noticed lately, which is that Google seems to be forgetting a lot of old stuff.

Water Cooler / Package Thieves Get Surprised
« on: December 18, 2018, 01:48:22 PM »
Porch pirates sprayed with glitter and fart smell after opening fake package booby traps

Hardware & Technology / Yandex Launches Smartphone for Russia
« on: December 06, 2018, 10:14:13 AM »
Yandex is launching a smartphone fully integrated with the Yandex ecosystem for the Russian market.  It includes "Alice" their own Digital Assistant.

Water Cooler / Outdoor Christmas Decorating
« on: December 04, 2018, 08:56:18 PM »
For years I had a 20 minute rule for outdoor decorating: if it took longer than 20 minutes for get it.

And I had it down: 1. hang a small wreath on the two wall lights on either side of the garage door in back, 2. hang a large pre-wired wreath off the front of the porch in front, 3. wrestle an extension cord out to said wreath from inside the porch. Done.  About 20 minutes.

Life was good.

Then I started getting fancy. I started adding on a timer, lights in the bushes and other stuff.  Mission creep.

This year: 1. one red and one green light bulb in the wall lights on either side of the garage door. 2. fancy 16 color changing light bulb with it's own remote in the can light on the porch.  That's it, change 3 light bulbs. 5 minutes tops.  W00t!

Traffic / Privacy search engines are growing in Europe, UK
« on: November 26, 2018, 02:46:50 PM »
Here is a good rundown of some EU based privacy search engines with some numbers:

What is neat is a lot more of them are building their own indexes than I thought, they just are not in English.

Traffic / unbubble a "European Search Engine"
« on: November 25, 2018, 12:05:58 PM »
It's a meta search engine and I don't normally get very excited about them.  But  is just odd enough that it caught my eye.  Odd because of the sources at least for the US version.  I have not tested it in depth but my first quick test indicates that it returns decent results for mainstream queries.

1. The selling point is no filter bubble and no bias.  No bias because they use many sources.
2. Privacy is another point.
3. In the US, I see 3 search engines as the heavy lifters: Exactseek, Mojeek, Yandex.  These three combined produce pretty good mainstream results.
4. I also see some results from: qwant, faroo, and some lesser Jayde Online directories, but not as often as the heavy lifters.

And therein are the reasons I'm mentioning this meta search at all: using Mojeek is a plus, but the addition of any of the Jayde Online properties are not something I would associate with privacy. 

Can somebody from UK, Continental Europe or anywhere outside the US try this engine and post what engines you see feeding the search I would appreciate it, plus your impressions.  Thanks.

Hardware & Technology / Mycroft Home Assistant
« on: November 23, 2018, 11:43:08 AM »
Move over ALexa, Siri, Google home.  There is an open source alternative that doesn't spy on you:

You can install the software on Raspberry Pi even.

Looks like they are about to release 2nd gen device which should be more consumer friendly.

Hardware & Technology / Privacy Not Included
« on: November 23, 2018, 11:03:45 AM »
Privacy Not Included is a website form the Mozilla Foundation that advises you on the privacy of connected products.

Hardware & Technology / Is Chrome worse than we thought for privacy?
« on: November 20, 2018, 02:49:02 PM »
If true, this is scary.

It's not really about ProtonMail, but it is about Chrome, if true.

Water Cooler / The Correspondent - New approach to news
« on: November 20, 2018, 02:43:31 PM »
Here it is:

The model has already been successful in the Netherlands.  They are jumpstarting the project.  Given our many threads here about how bad the news reporting is I think this is worth trying.

Traffic / Google giving out SEO scores?
« on: November 14, 2018, 03:32:33 PM »

Hardware & Technology / Pine64 to make $100 Linux Smartphone
« on: October 27, 2018, 10:21:30 AM »
Pine64 is Working on a Linux Smartphone Running KDE Plasma

If the price holds, I'm skeptical about the quality.  But regardless, we are getting some movement again on some phone OS's that are not controlled by Apple or Google.

Hardware & Technology / Has Android already hit it's high?
« on: October 09, 2018, 12:12:46 PM »
Now Is the Time to Start Planning for the Post-Android World | Linux Journal

This is going to be interesting.

Traffic / GooglePlus to Shut Down, Nobody will Notice
« on: October 08, 2018, 06:14:53 PM »

Google is shutting down the consumer aspect of its social network. It will remain available for enterprise clients that need an internal social network, but the regular app will be unavailable starting in August after a 10-month wind down period.

The corporate part will continue but the public part will close.

I'm running out of places to spam syndicate.

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