Imagine this scenario. We are in Russia, and voting is conducted by handing your ballot through a curtain. You are not allowed to look behind the curtain. You are never allowed to see the stack of ballots that was handed through the curtain. Then at the end of the day the ballots are destroyed and Putin comes out and announces who won.
Are you going to take Putin’s word for it?
This is exactly the scenario of our current computerized voting systems. If you have a voting machine and do not have a paper ballot that can be counted with independent observers verifying the count, you are really just trusting Putin to look behind the curtain and then tell you who won.
If you have a voting machine with a “paper trail” but not one compares the paper trail to the reported count you are still trusting Putin behind the curtain to tell you who won.
Even if you have paper ballots but they are counted by computers, and no one conducts an independent audit to test if the marks on the ballots match the reported results, you are still trusting Putin behind the curtain to tell you who won.
You should not trust any election unless the system allows anyone including you yourself to count the ballots. That is transparency. If you or someone you trust cannot examine the ballots you can’t trust it and why should you? No other system can be trusted. Billions and trillions are at stake in our elections so there are interests that will go to great lengths to make sure the elections go their way — if they an get away with it.
The question to ask about any election result is, was the process transparent and verifiable and if so DID someone verify it? Otherwise it’s Putin and curtain.
Here are my experiences with Windows 10 so far.
1) After a few days it started saying it wasn’t “activated. Some of the things you can usually do stopped working, like personalization. There was nothing I could do. I managed to find a phone number (!), Microsoft support told me I have to reinstall the Windows 7 that came with the computer (not 8) and then update to 10 again. Of course this involves first backing up all my files, and then finding the CDs and reinstalling all my apps, etc. (Note that the place where it says you can revert back to Windows 8 did not work even though it has been less than a month.)
2) Skype doesn’t work. At first it just wouldn’t quit no matter what without a restart. After a while it started not opening much of the time. Then crashing on opening. I could get it to work one out of 4 tries. But then it started crashing during calls.
3) OneDrive decided it isn’t installed anymore, keeps saying install me, won’t install.
4) Here’s the big one. All of a sudden all of my files are “read only.” They can’t be changed back. So I can’t run things like Quicken at all.
5) And now Windows itself just crashes spontaneously, even if the only thing I’m using is Solitaire.
Good thing I have been switching over to a Chromebook. But all my files, Skype and Quicken…
Note – post updated to add the part about Onedrive.
So my wife uses a Mac. She gets the new OSX update, and it REPLACED iPhoto with a different program that doesn’t do the same things. “Events” appears to be gone.
I go online and Apple proudly proclaims it’s “Your entire photo collection. Framed in a whole new way.”
Great. Have to learn an entirely new interface, etc. Functionality is different. Great.
Also it crashed twice already.
So I am starting to learn how to use it. It is obvious that it is all about moving you to iCloud — which Apple charges to use.
It’s like how Microsoft decided everyone in the PC world now has to learn an entirely new way to interact with their computers — as if they are tablets — with Windows 8. Great.
Like I said earlier, I have said goodbye to my iPhone, and have a Chromebook. The Chromebook is slowly replacing everything I do on my Windows computer.
I installed the new iOS 8.3. The next day I get a message that there is not enough room in iCloud to back up the iPhone and I need to PURCHASE more room.
So I went right out and bought the new Samsung Galaxy 6.
I have the Nexus 7 tablet, and that got me into Android. I use GMail, Google Calendar, etc. I’m in the Google ecosystem and no longer use Apple’s. I even have a Chromebook. So what the hell. I took the leap and this Galaxy 6 is a wonderful device. (But the camera is too wide-angle, and distorts a lot.)
The iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are beautiful hardware but buggy software that seems entirely about finding ways to pay Apple, so goodbye.
I still haven’t figured out iCloud.
Why does Apple redesign the interface for iTunes every version? Every time I have to hunt around the internet to figure out how to make it look like it looked before. I knew how to use it, now I don’t. The playlists bar to the left if the list of tunes is gone AGAIN, and this time I can’t find a setting to get it back.
Why does Apple keep doing this stuff to its users?
One would think that the media would be mentioning this in light of the recent attacks on computers… Sony … North Korea … hackers …
NYT, August 2, 2012, Cybersecurity Bill Is Blocked in Senate by GOP Filibuster, (BARF WARNING — there is big picture of Joe Lieberman.)
A cybersecurity bill that had been one of the Obama administration’s top national security priorities was blocked by a Republican filibuster in the Senate on Thursday, severely limiting its prospects this year.
The bill would have established optional standards for the computer systems that oversee the country’s critical infrastructure, like power grids, dams and transportation.
The next paragraph says everything you need to know about Democrats in recent years:
In the hopes of winning over Mr. McCain and the other Republicans, the bill had been significantly watered down in recent weeks by its sponsors, led by Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, who made the standards optional. Original versions of the bill said the standards would be mandatory and gave the government the power to enforce them.
They watered it down hoping to get Republican votes, made the rules optional, etc — and it was filibustered anyway.
As for the media silence about this right now, this is sort of like how two police officers were killed by two people who had been at the Bundy Ranch, and they laid a Tea Party flag on one of the officers and … nothing in the news about that. But the killings of two cops in NYC, we have wall-to-wall coverage blaming protesters, liberals, Obama, etc…
I upgraded my iPhone 5 to iOS8 yesterday. Everything looks fine, works fine.
There was just one glitch, automatic brightness is too dark, very hard to see the screen. I turned it off, upped the brightness, then turned off and on, then reset (hold down power and ‘home’ button at the same time until it restarts.) This seems to have fixed it.
The changes to the keyboard are GREAT!
So for at least iPhone 5 and newer, I recommend upgrading. Because what I say matters so much.
Recently in the post Avoid Yahoo I wrote about how Yahoo treats their customers. (Hint: terribly.)
I’m just trying to gain access to a control panel for a domain registered at Yahoo years ago. Yahoo “lost” the info about how to access it. This is done through Yahoo Small Business.
Emails get nowhere, and they ask you to call. But a call involves a promised wait of at least half an hour. I tried and gave up several times, including at 1am on a Saturday morning and again Sunday at that time.
So I gave up because of time, and am trying again. I have been holding 45 minutes so far.
Here’s the thing. THEY don’t know why I am calling, they just know that one of their “Small Business” customers needs help. 45 minute wait time SO FAR with no end in sight.
I’ll keep you posted, but obviously never, ever, ever do any kind of business with this company.
Update – been on hold for an hour now…
Update – 1 hour 7 min, reached a support rep. I ended up having to PAY YAHOO to get access to the control panel for this already-owned domain.
If you have to use glasses to read, then the new iPhone OS is not for you. They made all kinds of things too small to read (or even to see in many cases), especially in the Music app. I’d guess that Apple has too few people over 40 to tell them this.
PS To second comment: I started one of the first Mac software companies.
In general. Keep your computers backed up. I just talked to ANOTHER friend who lost everything because a drive died with no backups. This makes three in a couple of months.
“I know I should do that,” they said.
Just do a backup every now and then. OK?
Not usable YET. It STILL says “Downtown Belmont” in the middle of Redwood City. Belmont is two towns away. This means they are not even fixing reported errors, because I reported this the day after the map was released.
I checked out Apple’s announcements… They say a Maps app is coming to OSX — the computer OS. And they say that their map data is being fixed…
So I got out my iPhone and found where I had hidden the Apple Maps app. (I use the Google maps app, because it has accurate data, while the Apple app is grossly inaccurate. So I hid that app where I have little chance of accidentally using it by mistake.) Right there in the middle of Redwood City it still says “Downton Belmont.” I reported this immediately after the terrible Maps app came out, so it had to be close to the top of their user-reported “fix it” queue, yet nothing has been done.
For those not in the Bay Area, Belmont is two towns up from Redwood City, after San Carlos.