Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Joe Philipps
Just another curmudgeon wandering the Internet
Just another curmudgeon wandering the Internet

Joe's posts

Post is pinned.
Ever since G+ had the ability to pin a post to the top of the list of posts displayed when somebody views my profile, I've been meaning to consolidate some ideas from various places about how I use G+, to explain some things.  I have finally decided to take a stab at it.

First, I'd like to say that I will try to use the most appropriate medium for posting.  I really like the style of +Eric Raymond , where for longer form stuff, he posts some introductory thoughts on G+ and then links to his blog post.  So for some fuzzy idea of what constitutes a post "too long for G+" I will instead post over to and "cross link them" (a post here links to Blogspot, and the end of the Blogspot post links back to the G+ post).  Since Google doesn't have an easy way to do this (that I know of), there will usually be some time when one isn't linked to the other, most likely because I'm in the process of editing one or the other (can't get a link to the G+ post until a G+ post is made, so then I have to go back to the blog post and edit the embedded URI).

This post in particular is an exception to the general rule that I use.  It's longer than I'd like for a G+ post, but here is where it belongs.

Please keep in mind, a plus-one can mean a lot of things.  The Google folks even made a post about that when G+ was just getting started, and they listed (I think) 50 things.  As an example of something where I think that can be easily misunderstood, I have Fox News in my Circles, and I plus-one a lot of their posts.  It doesn't necessarily mean I agree with the subject matter of the post, in many cases for them specifically, it means, "Thank you for reporting on that."  As a hypothetical example, if they report, "ISIL beheads more Christians," I don't want ISIL to kill Christians just for being Christians, but I'm am glad Fox News reported that.

I extremely rarely delete posts/comments.  For example, there was one case that the person about whom I posted did not like that I brought up an issue which had been vexing them for over a year.  I mistakenly irritatied them by posting some suggested solutions, not seeing the year part of the posting date, and they expressed some annoyance at me.  I asked them if they'd prefer I deleted the whole thread, they said "yes," so I did out of respect for them and because I intended no harm or irritation whatsoever.

Similarly, it is very rare indeed, but there have been comments made on some of my posts which have no relevance to the post's topic.  Believe me, in one example, I like the commenting person just fine, it's just that I didn't want anything not really related to that post in the comments, so I deleted the off-topic comment.  So if you commented on something I put up there only to find later your comment deleted, I probably couldn't find any direct or possibly even indirect relevance, and I'm sorry if this annoys you or something, but if it doesn't seem to serve any direct purpose, I will likely delete it.  Really, even though I am not any government entity, I believe in the principles stated in US Constitution Amendment I, and very rarely see the need for what amounts to censorship, and if what I argue can't stand up to a little debated scrutiny, maybe I'd better rethink my position.

Almost everything I post is to "Public," and I do not think I have any settings which inhibit anything (reshares, comments, etc.).  But every once in a GREAT while, I see no futher productive discussion happening, and I will disable comments for some posts, and perhaps even delete some.  Again, I admit that's kind of a weak thing to  do, instead of seeking ways to strengthen my argument, but every once in a long while, I see nothing particularly productive going on and shut it down.  If anyone sees a need to comment further, I don't think I've ever disabled a reshare (which is kind of just a convenience thing anyway, it's not particularly tough to post while copying the text of another post or a link to it), so they can put in their $0.02 that way on whatever topic.  I do that all the time with one particular person in my Circles who apparently restricts commenting on their posts (I'll just say they're one of the higher profile early Internet people).  Hey, that's their prerogative, and why the setting's there, even though I wish they wouldn't do that.

Disabling comments happens to apply to this specific post.  Its sole intent is a broadcast for anyone to read, it is not meant as a conversation starter.

I know Google probably want to focus only on the positive, hence there is only a plus-one button on G+, but I sure wish sometimes there were a -1, like there is on YouTube.  As an example, of particular utility for that  is when Fox News posts about some feature of some product (usualy vehicles) and mentions exactly what product it is.  It looks more like they're passing off an ad as a news article, and I always wonder if they get paid to do that by the company getting "reported on."  Ditto with curt posts with a link only to  I don't want to wade through minutes of my time watching a video to get at the heart of the story, I just want to get a quick idea of what the story is about, and be able to skim a Web page.

I'm also terribly sorry if you Circle me and my response is to block you.  Every now and again, I see folks, usually Pages (specific G+ meaning, not generic meaning), which Circle me.  A number of times in the past, not too, too long after I saw the message about so-and-so has Circled you, I would receive a message which is in essence spam.  I would guess that a lot of these folks Circle me with the expectation of me Circling them back.  I get enough posts in my Stream without Circling every random person back, it's already a bit overwhelming.  And Google do not do me any favors by showing me "so and so plus-one'd this here post."  I haven't yet been irritated enough by the latter to write some Stylish or Scriptish Greasemonkey* so I never have to see those (although I have for the stupid "you may know" or "trending" or other similar useless-to-me blocks in my Stream).  So I guess that's a long way of saying, if you deduce that I've blocked someone, I just really didn't see the point in the act of Circling, and as a preemptive/proactive move of not receiving spam posts, I applied a block.  For example,  I just don't see any point of "Boomer Benefits" or "Indian Arts" following what I have to say, and I really would rather not receive posts from them.

Don't get me wrong, I would regret if I block somebody for such arbitrary reasons, and they really had something to say that I would find interesting, but alas, dems da breaks.  I also do have some folks blocked who seem to have no valid point whatsoever and are objectionable to me for one reason or another (they write in all caps all the time, their English is just incomprehensible to me, or all they can seem to do is troll).  Life is just a whole lot simpler when I am pretty much blissfully unaware that these folks have written/said anything.  And as one DSLReports user says in his .sig block (paraphrasing), keep things simple, they'll get complicated all on their own.

Oh, well...I think that's about enough for now, I'll edit/add on to this if I think of any more relevant stuff.

* Scriptish (for Firefox) unfortuantely went "splat" and does not really work with the latest FF releases.  So I had to revert to Greasemonkey, which isn't as convenient.  A lot of the pages I want to fix are JavaScript abominations, and the things I want to fix are constructed with JS.  Scriptish has a script mode which delays execution until the page is idle, whereas I have to add an onload event listener to do that myself in Greasemonkey.

Steve "Stu" Burguiere pretty much nailed it on The Glenn Beck Radio Program this morning. Why was this artificial deadline imposed for the PPACA "repeal and replace" legislation? Why are Ryan and DJT declaring they're done with it? Why are they not continuing to negotiate language of the law? The Program also (I think correctly) speculates that it's all a dog-and-pony show to say "hey, we tried, but we couldn't get it done" when the whole PPACA system implodes under its own burdensome weight.

That's unfortunate... +TuneIn isn't working right now. Their Web site serves up a blank home page. Their Roku channel just crashes back to the Roku home screen. This is very bad for them indeed.

I have to wonder, how easy would it be to compromise the GPS? I couldn't find much at all on GPS security . I'm not imagining any way a compromise could be used to affect anything specific, but I have to wonder if some malicious people could just upload false ephemeris data. Hopefully the folks tending to the operations of the GPS SVs would notice rather quickly and correct the almanac, but at that point it would seem to be a matter of trying to keep up with the crooks. Are almanacs digitally signed? Are the links encrypted? Is there a way to change the onboard software without replacing each SV? And is that update mechanism secure?

I just heard a ridiculous ad on WGR during the 3rd period of the Sabres game for Olivet University. Too bad maybe they didn't ask someone in their media department about how to produce ads. They need to use beds as beds, not as something competing for the listener's comprehension. Or maybe they just have incompetent people working in their media department. I could barely make out that it was Olivet and that it was a higher education ad. Beyond that, I have no idea what the ad was about. Drop the level of the "bed" by about 9 dB, and you might have a fighting chance of being understood.

Post has attachment
Can anyone tell me what the music is for this video, possibly point me to a source? I tried Google Sound Search, Shazam, SoundHound, all no luck.

CodyDon and Friendly Skies Film/Nick Cyganski use this. Great piece, but I'd like to listen to the whole thing!

Once again, there's all this talk about what the US Congress is doing, calling it "health care." No. Our Congress is most decidedly NOT debating health care. Are they talking about how many years of schooling someone must have before performing surgery? Are they debating safety and efficacy standards for drugs? Are they discussing sterilization procedures? The answers to these questions, AFAIK, is "no."

What they are debating is health care financing or health care insurance law! Don't ever forget that. What's the subtitle of the law, the name that's used instead of the bill number? The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. It's right in the name. It's about financing, not about care.

By the way, as you've no doubt noticed, it's anything but affordable. So much for that. I still think someone threatened Justice Roberts. There's no reason someone should need to buy something merely for existing.

Gee whiz. I just heard Glenn Beck talk about 300 mi. not being enough for the charging interval for a battery based vehicle. My Chevy Lumina used to get about that per tank! He wants something like 500 mi. between charges. Pish-posh. What gasoline vehicle gets that much between refillings? My Elantra is about 400. What he said is just silly. The root idea, that electric cars don't go far enough between recharges, is a valid comment, but the actual numbers are smaller, on the order of 75 mi. between charges for some cars, which is not enough for some people with long commutes.

Somebody, me understand. Google helps us users increase our security by implementing RFC6238-compliant sign in, a matching application for (at least) Android (not sure about other platforms), yet the default when signing in is to keep your hash entry valid for 30 days. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? Why is the default NOT to enter a hash for every browser session/lifetime? (as in, OK, kill the validity of the hash/signin session when the browser exits) I don't mind if the checkbox is there, but why not default it to unchecked???

Post has attachment
I guess I'm living in interesting times. We had a bit of a wind storm in western New York State
Wait while more posts are being loaded