Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Brain-reading Devices

A highly recommended ‘food for thought’ article for you today..

Think Internet Data Mining Goes Too Far? Then You Won’t Like This

These days, you can hop on the Internet and buy yourself a consumer-grade brain scanning device for just a few hundred dollars. Technically, they’re called brain computer interfaces, or BCIs. As these devices develop, researchers are thinking a few steps ahead — they’re worried about how to keep marketers from scanning our brains.Read more..

[ Share that one with your friends/family..]

Sorta related: Yesterday, while watching an educational seminar posted to YouTube, I experienced for the first time YouTube’s “InVideo” ’embedded’ ads – ads that actually interrupt the video, and you have to wait/watch for 5 seconds before you can click on “skip ad” – which was made worse by incessant ‘ghost overlay’ (semi-transparent) ads which I had to keep closing.

Almost exactly 5 years ago I wrote Good-bye YouTube. Enjoy Your Ads., and I guess it’s finally come to fruit. I am muttering expletives like the proverbial Chief Bosons Mate, here folks. Has advertising gotten SO invasive/pervasive that I must cut out all forms of media (besides books)? Seems to me we have reached that point. (I’d like to paraphrase Shakespeare here: “And the second thing we do is..”)

If anyone knows of an ad blocker (or other trick) that can strip those out, please let me know. (Yes, I looked at this one.)
Update: Found an easy one. I added ||^ as a custom filter to my AdBlock Plus extension. Yay!

Today’s quotable quote:Advertising is the art of convincing people to spend money they don’t have for something they don’t need.” ~ Will Rogers

Copyright 2007-2014 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.
And please, never forget – one person can make a difference.
Find a way to make someone’s day today.
(Best advice I ever heard? Don’t sweat the small stuff.)

May 30, 2014 Posted by | advice, consumer electronics, how to, News, privacy, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Microsoft Buys Skype. Now What?

You may have heard that Microsoft purchased the VoIP program Skype. My email has me thinking this news apparently has some readers worried.

Microsoft’s Ballmer $7.7-Billion Skype Blunder

“Microsoft is buying Skype, the video and Voice over Internet Protocol giant, for over seven billion in cash and this will help them how?READ FULL STORY…

I have seen a lot of dumb moves by tech CEO’s (and investors) over the years. I mean.. colossally idiotic. So, to me, this is just one more item on a long list. (But I am willing to concede, there is probably some reasoning for Microsoft’s long-range plan I am ignorant of.. and it may prove smart.)

What does this mean for you? I am going to go out on a limb, and do something I hate doing – predict the future. And I predict that this acquisition will have no, zip, zero, nada effect on us Skype users.

The fear: I cannot believe that suddenly you will start having to pay for what you are now doing free. (As people seem to be worried about.) Why? Because this is a technology that’s already available fully free and Open Source. Windows Messenger does the same thing Skype does, as does ooVoo and Vid, and several others. (I think Google even has something…)

Skype isn’t even that good a product. What it has going for it is lots of users. (It has “name brand” recognition.)

So what was Microsoft’s Balmer thinking? I don’t know and I don’t care. I just chuckled.

If Skype tells me I need to pay, I’ll simply uninstall it, and install something else – something free.

And so will every other Skype user.

They know this up in Redmond, so I am not expecting to have to switch. Not everyone up there is as idjiotic as Balmer can seem to be…

That’s how it’s done: But that’s how it’s done in today’s world: you come up with some tech thingy and get lots of users onboard, and wait for someone with more money than brains to come and buy you out. Almost 8 BILLION? Cash??? Sold!

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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May 11, 2011 Posted by | advice, computers, Internet, Microsoft, News, PC, tech, VoIP | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments