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Topics - Brad

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1
Water Cooler / Pile of Index Cards system
« on: March 03, 2019, 02:28:23 PM »
Some people keep offline notebooks, journals, commonplace books, to do lists etc.  I'm kinda taken with the Pile of Index Cards (PoIC) system:

Quote
How it works
Hawk describes four types of cards in his system:

The Record Card. He describes it as “a diary, note, account, health, weather, cook, any kind of records about us belongs to this class.” I’d say this is the incoming “stuff” of the day: appointments, notes to follow up on, etc.
The Discover Card. Hawk describes the Discover Card as “Things from my brain, mind, spirit, anything emerge from inside me, are classified into this class.” This is the result of a mind dump. Don’t worry about classifying when filling out a Discover Card. Just get whatever is on your mind out and onto paper.
The GTD Card. Here he combines the title of a project and several actions that pertain to it (here’s a look at the template in English). This reminds me of the “Hipstper PDA Template” I used religiously about 10 years ago.
The Cite Card captures other people’s ideas that warrant attention. He says, “Important here is distinguishing ‘your idea (Discovery Card)’ and ‘someone else’s idea (Cite Card).’ Source of the information must be included in the Cite Card. A book, for example, author, year, page(s) are recorded for later use.”

https://unclutterer.com/2014/06/17/the-pile-of-index-cards-poic-system/

Of course you can add other types of cards but these 4 types seem to be a good place to start.  There is more information and good tips for setting up such a Personal Knowledge Base available online.  There is no one software for replicating PoIC that I can find.  There is something to be said for keeping paper records as well. 

In essence this is a commonplace book https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonplace_book  broken up into card sized chunks, one thing per card.

2
Water Cooler / Walmart gets into the freight rail business
« on: March 03, 2019, 01:32:51 PM »

3
Traffic / Should Apple Have It's Own Search Engine? MacWorld
« on: January 28, 2019, 02:37:40 PM »
Should Apple have it's own search engine?

Quote
In a recent interview with Axios on HBO, Apple CEO Tim Cook was made to answer a very uncomfortable question. He was asked how he squares taking billions of dollars from Google to make it the default search engine for Safari (both on Mac and iOS) with his company’s stance on privacy. Google is certainly not the only company that trades in monetizing your online activity, but it’s one of the biggest. And Google’s search is far from achieving the level of data privacy that Apple demands of its products and services.

https://www.macworld.com/article/3324042/techology-business/should-apple-have-its-own-search-engine.html

The author goes on to make the argument that Apple should buy Duckduckgo.

One flaw: it's not clear if the author is aware of how dependent DDG is on Bing.  He seems not to realize this.

I have a feeling this topic is not going to go away among Apple users.  It's going to become increasingly uncomfortable for Apple to use Google as a default.  But that is a long way from Apple buying a search engine.

4
Traffic / DuckDuckGo Switches to Apple Maps
« on: January 16, 2019, 01:59:33 PM »
DDG has switched to Apple Maps in their search results.
https://spreadprivacy.com/duckduckgo-apple-mapkit-js/

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.

5
Traffic / I Felt a Disturbance in the Google
« on: December 19, 2018, 12:46:42 AM »
Quote
The difference between Google and Bing in this case is consistent with something I’ve noticed lately, which is that Google seems to be forgetting a lot of old stuff.

https://blogs.harvard.edu/doc/2018/12/16/google-vs-bing/

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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
https://boingboing.net/2018/12/18/porch-pirates-sprayed-with-gli.html

7
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.

https://yandex.com/company/blog/phone

8
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!

9
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:
https://www.570news.com/2018/11/21/european-privacy-search-engines-aim-to-challenge-google/

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

10
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 https://www.unbubble.eu/  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.

11
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: Mycroft.ai
https://mycroft.ai/

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.

12
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.
https://foundation.mozilla.org/en/privacynotincluded/

13
Hardware & Technology / Is Chrome worse than we thought for privacy?
« on: November 20, 2018, 02:49:02 PM »
If true, this is scary.
https://old.reddit.com/r/ProtonMail/comments/9yl94k/never_connect_to_protonmail_using_chrome/

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

14
Water Cooler / The Correspondent - New approach to news
« on: November 20, 2018, 02:43:31 PM »
Here it is: https://thecorrespondent.com/

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.

15
Traffic / Google giving out SEO scores?
« on: November 14, 2018, 03:32:33 PM »

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