Tech Friday: Advice on passwords and security breaches

| August 23, 2019

Some excellent and “do-able” ways to maintain reasonable password security in this Lifehacker article: One of the best things about having a solid password is that you don’t have to change it. If it’s strong, unique, and hasn’t been compromised by an attacker, you gain no security benefits by modifying it according to some arbitrary timetable. […]

Tech Friday: How safe is data with cloud storage services?

| August 2, 2019

Even if you don’t regularly using cloud storage services (likely your smartphone is), most of us are at some point backing up data from our computers or using services online that store our data on major cloud storage companies.  I’ve personally had a growing concern over the race for quantum computing which eventually will make […]

Tech Friday: Quantum computing and cryptography

| July 26, 2019

The race for quantum computing superiority has been on my mind and in my discussions lately. State actors like China, North Korea and Russia are all running projects sponsored by their governments to be the first to harness such computing power that will make today’s encryption nearly worthless. Here in the US, our biggest tech […]

Tech Friday: Photo manipulation is disturbing and creepy #faceapp

| July 19, 2019

Disturbing and “creepy” (as Katelyn messaged) … although I don’t mind looking a bit younger. 😉   Photoshop in the old days was fun to play around with, but nowadays, video and photo manipulation is beginning to frighten me. Taylor sent me this age-changing photo from our weekend at Put-In-Bay using FaceApp. Although there is […]

Tech Friday: The challenges of policing speech on social media

| July 12, 2019

There are challenges from users and governments facing several of the companies who make money advertising to the millions of eyeballs and the marketing of users personal data. We all want “free services,” but most people dislike the collection and selling of their personal data or having to sift through advertising … especially when it […]

Tech Friday: My Fitbit encourages exercise, including swimming

| July 5, 2019

So far the Fitbit Versa “watch” that I received for my birthday has been great … and I’m using it far more than expected. It has already encouraged me to be a little more active as I work hard to hit the 10,000 step goal each day. Thank you Katelyn and Drew! This past weekend […]

Tech Friday: Limiting how much data Amazon Echoes collect

| June 28, 2019

Unfortunately I’ve bought into – or was “gifted” into 🙂 – BUT really enjoy the Amazon Echo smart speaker virtual assistant devices. I know Alexa is “always listening” (as is my cellphone, iPad, computers, etc) and that they are doing “who knows what”with my data, but probably not always what I want. Obviously, they dissect […]

A different kind of Tech Friday: A homebrew Vegetation Killer

| June 21, 2019

These homemade “salt based” recipe for Roundup vegetation control substitutes appears ever spring and summer on social networks, emails and blogs on the Internet. This year I figured I would archive this vinegar, Epsom salt (Magnesium sulfate) and our favorite degreaser and soap, Dawn dishwashing soap on MyDesultoryBlog as a helpful tidbit.

Tech Friday: There is a problem with live GPS rerouting

| June 7, 2019

A pitfall in real-time GPS mapping services is that, although they “can” highlight road construction and closures, they are not always accurate or give appropriate advice for detours or “route arounds.” This was apparent on a 16 hour drive back from Florida (see comment) and more recently for a road closing leading to our development […]

Tech Friday: Your photo apps are making a lot of “facetile” images

| May 31, 2019

If you are using Apple’s Photos app, you’ve probably noticed the software attempts to identify faces of people (not just Apple either). This can be helpful for “you” to sift through photos, but also seems a bit nosy when the app also builds a pile of “facetile” photos on its own. Most people likely will […]

Tech Friday: ZombieLoad Flaw in Intel Chips $INTC

| May 17, 2019

Intel chips are presenting a huge problem for nearly every computer user with chips since 2011. These Intel chips have vulnerabilities that if exploited can be used to steal sensitive information directly from the processor. According to published articles from security experts, "the bugs are reminiscent of Meltdown and Spectre, which exploited a weakness in […]

Tech Friday: The Social Media that has become part of my life

| April 26, 2019

Likely I am not alone in constantly reevaluating the pros and cons of participating in social media. I’ve purposely limited my exposure to only a couple of platforms even though I enjoy staying in touch with friends and acquaintances … and generally don’t have a problem with people respectfully debating news and politics. Facebook as […]

Small things have turned me away from Ebay and Paypal

| April 12, 2019

The “customer experience” (a marketing buzz-term nowadays) can make or break companies. Some do it right, others fall on their face early in their start-up cycle … and others like Ebay ($EBAY) and Paypal ($PYPL) have employees, customer service departments and management issues dragging their company down … yes, this is going to be a […]

Tech Friday: Planning on an iPad Pro upgrade in 2019, but …

| March 22, 2019

There is isn’t anything wrong with my current 2014 Apple iPad, it is just getting older as far as technology goes, and is a little sluggish (or so it seems). It is still the single most used tech device that I have … and the reason I’ll likely replace it with another when the time […]

WordPress update to 5.1.1 – testing the Editor Performance

| March 15, 2019

Just upgrading blog to WordPress 5.1.1 and needed a little text copy to try out the new editor (below). It does seem a bit snappier? BTW, did you know WordPress now powers over 1/3rd of the top 10 million sites on the web? Site Health With security and speed in mind, this release introduces WordPress’s […]

Tech Friday and some etymology history of the word Emoji

| March 15, 2019

I enjoy receiving the occasional email on words from Science Diction (Science Friday folks) and this one from the word emoji was a good one. READ the full history here  … or on the archived WaybackMachine LINK

Tech Friday: An update on the Samsung Chromebook Pro

| March 8, 2019

Chromebooks are not my preferred devices, but they are excellent for those with more limited computing needs. For the most part, they are relatively inexpensive, easy to update, very reliable and frustration free. They boot/start quicker than most devices and data, apps and setting are easily backed up on Google’s cloud … so as long […]

Tech Friday: The Wayback Machine and Cincinnati Style Chili

| March 1, 2019

This is an unusual Tech Friday post, but after being frustrated this week in clicking a dead link to an article that disappeared after a website was updated, I decided there must be a better way to ensure information, links and websites remained useful … WITHOUT having to archive them entirely on my computers, servers […]

Tech Friday: Simple advice IF you must use a virtual assistant

| February 22, 2019

TechFriday advice for those of us who enjoy using virtual assistants like those from Google, Apple or Amazon: 1. Change the Default Password on Your Wi-Fi Router 2. Set the Voice Lock 3. Decide Whether You Want to Shop By Voice 4. Understand that Privacy Rights in the US Are on the Way – but […]

Tech Friday: Do you have a Flickr account with 1000 photos?

| February 8, 2019

Yup … I have over 1000 photos. Once again, the lesson to take to heart is to "control your own data" whenever you can or be blackmailed into new subscription rules or lose everything.  Even more challenging if a company goes out of business or deciding you have infringed on their user policy without warning […]

Tech Friday: A virtual assistant showing a little humor

| January 25, 2019

It won’t be long before virtual assistants end up in our car … question is, which one will it be? (from what I’m seeing as of 2019, it would be Amazon’s Alexa). Currently Amazon has definitely taken the lead in our home as the affordable Echo Dots are now throughout our house. I … well […]

Tech Friday: Options to subscriptions services raising prices

| January 18, 2019

The recent price increases rumbling through the economy are starting to be felt in the products we all use and have learned to appreciate. One of the services I’ll likely eliminate before the monthly price increase is the streaming service Netflix. We did this once before, but with all the new added content and lack […]

Tech Friday: The best TECH life-changers in the last couple years

| January 11, 2019

The Amazon Echo in Kitchen/Great Room and the new Echo Dot 3rd Gen in my workshop Not a day goes by without Amazon’s Echo devices doing something for us in our home … and it is only a matter of time before “she” (Alexa) will be assisting me in the car too. It is almost […]

Tech Friday: Are Windows registry cleaners hokum?

| December 28, 2018

Those of us who manage our own computers likely do our share of “desktop” cleaning and are regularly warned by our anti-virus software that we need to do more than prevent viruses and hackers from accessing our computers. The current “free” anti-virus companies all push to sell their paid software … and regularly highlight registry […]

Tech Friday: What is all the 5G buzz about?

| December 14, 2018

"Hey Rich, should I wait for a 5G phone … and by the way, what is 5G?" One of these days I’m just going to say, "I don’t know," but until then, I bump along pretending I know more than I do … that is until I get in too deep to walk away. This […]

Tech Friday – Finally fixed the slideshow plugin for WordPress

| December 7, 2018

A couple years ago I added Simple Slideshow Manager to MyDesultoryBlog as a way to include a series of photos in a single post. Having "attempted" different approaches that fail in one OS, Browser or device before the above plugin seemed to work … that is, until it didn’t. Having posted to the forums, trying […]

Simple iPhone cursor features unknown for years by many users

| November 24, 2018

This really should have been yesterday’s Tech Friday post, but between the holiday with turkey, family and football watching on Thursday and another market drop and oil plunge of another 7.7% to $50.42 on Friday my focus was elsewhere. As for a tech tip, a viral tweet last week caught hold when it really shouldn’t […]

Tech Friday: My Brydge BT keyboard has a faulty USB socket

| November 16, 2018

The Brydge keyboard attached to my aging iPad Air2, which I love, has been slowly causing me a few irritation when it come to getting a connection while charging. The tightly sealed aluminum clad keyboard was much better than my original Kensington (left) and tested Zagg (right), both which were great. Still the Brydge is […]

Tech Friday: Brydge keyboards for the new iPad Pro 2018

| November 9, 2018

Having used a Brydge keyboard with an iPad from their first introduction, I can say that IF I were to update my current iPad Air2 to the 2018 just introduced iPad Pro that I would seriously consider waiting for the 2019 Brydge keyboard … they are that good. But with all current Apple updates to […]

Tech Friday: The Amazon Echo will soon have Whisper Mode

| October 5, 2018

The Amazon Echo has been a fun gadget to use and have in our home since Katelyn and Drew gave it to us for Christmas. After having our granddaughter Annalyn with us for a few days last week, I realized we don’t always have the volume set appropriately especially when she is sleeping. Hm … […]

Tech Friday: Never shopping again at Jet.com – $WMT owned

| September 14, 2018

In recent years, we’ve grown accustom to DOTcom retail companies delivering on their promises. Thanks to Amazon and their outstanding efficiency and reliable fulfillment and delivery services. Perhaps I’ve forgotten that not all online retailers live up to what we now take for granted? One expects that when a product is listed on a major […]

Tech Friday: Yahoo and AOL sift through your emails

| August 31, 2018

Tech news this week highlighted Yahoo and AOL brand email services. There are still plenty of users still using them and unknowingly being spied on (including me since I still use Yahoo for "junk" mail — I started with AOL & Yahoo in the early 1990s kept the simple rdc2@ addresses). The search algorithms and […]

Tech Friday 2: My favorite Cincinnati oriented tweet of the day

| August 24, 2018

| ̄ ̄ ̄ ̄ ̄ ̄ | | WE | | ARE NOT | | THE | | NATIONAL | | ENQUIRER | | _______| (\__/) || (•ㅅ•) || /   づ — Enquirer (@Enquirer) August 23, 2018

Tech Friday: Rumors buzzed about a new Apple Macbook Air

| August 24, 2018

What’s new with the popular and well loved Apple MacBook Air? Nothing yet, but this week heated up with rumors that 8-year old Air is getting a big makeover for the end of 2018 (2017 CNET review of last years Macbook Air). First on the "hope for rumors HAS" list is that the device remains […]

Tech Friday: The inexpensive Wyze Cam now supports Alexa

| July 20, 2018

I’ve been using the Wyze Cam to keep an eye on our Florida condo for a couple of months now … and besides an issue with a low-cost router overheating, it has been excellent. I’ve been thinking about adding a second one with the adjustable viewing angle, but it is not on the high priority […]

Tech Friday: Time for an Apple iOS 11.4.1 security update

| July 13, 2018

Apple has been updating their iOS iPhone and iPad mobile operating system regularly and they seem to take far longer than in the old days (a couple years ago – HAHA). This latest update will not be appreciated by law enforcement who often want to gain access to data on a suspects phone. This recent […]

Tech Friday: The wireless carrier blues with a positive ending

| July 6, 2018

It is never fun playing plan games with wireless carriers, especially if you have been 100% satisfied with everything "as is." After switching to VirginMobileUSA last year due to a SUPER promotion, I could not be happier with Virgin’s special price and service … but all good things seem to come to an end. This […]

Tech Friday: What is going to be new in Apple iOS12

| June 22, 2018

It has been a while since posting on “what’s new” with Apple. As we approach the convergence of mobile operation systems and desktop, the maturing lightweight phone OS on all platforms is growing in power, size and use. The writing is on the wall. Microsoft has announced Windows 10 will be the last Windows operating […]

Tech Friday: Adding security and privacy with a VPN

| June 15, 2018

My good friend Jeff works in IT and has been programming and running networks for 30 years; after attending a cyber security conference a few weeks ago to help hardening his company’s network and systems, he asked me what VPN service I was using? “Online privacy experts such as privacytools.io recommend staying away from VPN providers based […]

Tech Friday flashback: A technology blog post from 12 years ago

| May 25, 2018

Noticed a blog post from 12 years ago discussing “portable” computing and how things have changed. In 2006 the average laptop weighed about 7 pounds with batteries, compared to 20 years prior where my Compaq was 28 pounds … and required 110VAC power. LINK to post Now an iPhone or iPad can run circles around […]

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.
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