A Web Security PSA Because I Love You

Okay, I’ve never used Cloudflare before and I don’t own any stocks in it that I know so I’m passing this info along simply because I’m a dude* who hates having my cookies tracked and Facebook selling me out to the Russians and all the other creepy Dark Web stuff (or is it Deep Web stuff?) that I always feel threatened by and I assume you’re of the same mind, may god bless your poor soul if you are.

If you’re not familiar with Cloudflare, here is what pops up when asking Bing, what is Cloudflare:

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Maybe Elon has a point…

While I’m a big admirer of Elon Musk and all he’s been able to accomplish, I’ve always been a bit skeptical about his alarmist rhetoric regarding Artificial Intelligence’s threat to humanity, seeing it more as a means for him to groom future volunteers for a one-way ticket to a Mars colony.

Not a bad strategy, mind you.

But with each cool but creepy new video from Boston Dynamics that hits the web and goes viral, I grow more and more less skeptical of Elon’s warnings…

Yeah…

Creepy, right?

But still… it’s way cool, too.

Oh, and while we’re on the topic of the end of humanity, here’s a cut regarding how technology is altering our perception of reality from a recent terrifying article from Buzzfeed:

“Alarmism can be good — you should be alarmist about this stuff,” [Aviv] Ovadya said one January afternoon before calmly outlining a deeply unsettling projection about the next two decades of fake news, artificial intelligence–assisted misinformation campaigns, and propaganda. “We are so screwed it’s beyond what most of us can imagine,” he said. “We were utterly screwed a year and a half ago and we’re even more screwed now. And depending how far you look into the future it just gets worse.”

That future, according to Ovadya, will arrive with a slew of slick, easy-to-use, and eventually seamless technological tools for manipulating perception and falsifying reality, for which terms have already been coined — “reality apathy,” “automated laser phishing,” and “human puppets.”

Yeah…

We’re screwed.

But still… it’s kinda cool, too.

Right?

 
 

“The Way” of Technology

Well, my bold Westworld binge-watching bonanza proclamation turned out to be nothing more than a bunch of ballyhooed BS…

I only got through the fourth episode before running out of time.

Consequently, I can’t provide anything much in the way of a review. But I can provide a bit of feedback that might mean something about its watchability

Which is… I kept falling asleep while watching it.

Now, full disclosure, I’ve taken some of my best naps during what turned out to be some of my favorite shows so my inability to stay awake while watching Westworld in and of itself doesn’t mean that much.

As for what I was able to stay awake for… I really like what it is trying to do in concept; however, its execution…

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So, it looks like “The Industry” is finally beginning to figure out this Snapchat thing…

snapchat

I began a quest a while back to understand how Indie Authors such as myself can leverage the seemingly incomprehensible (at least to an old dud like me) yet immensely popular messaging app called Snapchat.

To be honest, I gave up any hope of me ever using the app as part of my publishing platform right after giving it a very brief whirl of a befuddling go during the time I wrote the first post it.

However, I haven’t given up on trying to understand how it and other apps like it can help others promote their work, especially the younger Indie Authors who best fit the apps’ demographic. So, I’ve kept my eye open for anything relatively relative about it…

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The Murky Link Between the Russian Cyber Threat and My Novel

This is a link to the live recent Senate Intelligence hearing regarding “Russian Hacking and Cybersecurity.”

This is a murky link.

This is a link to The Sea Trials of an Unfortunate Sailor, my book about the harsh realities of life in the navy during the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell era.

What is the relevance of the murky link between the two?

Probably none.

But you won’t know for sure unless you watch the hearing to understand why the Russian hacking of our cyber space is threat to our sovereignty and read the book to understand why intolerance and bigotry is a threat to our humanity.

#prettymurkyright

Silence is Consent

silence

Because I proudly worked in the Intelligence Community for nearly thirty years before catching a nasty cold called leukemia, out of a sense of duty and obligation I rarely discuss publicly matters that involve it.

However, because of my complete and utter disdain for Trump’s ascendency to the presidency, from the very beginning of his campaign to this very moment, it is hard for me to remain silent as he, to serve only his self-interests, politicizes the national security of the country he’s been voted in to protect by dismissing assessed serious acts of aggression by a foreign power and, while doing so, denigrates and shows a complete lack of understanding and respect for a community I know to be amassed with good, honest folk who want nothing more than to serve their country honorably in their humble efforts to keep it safe.

Because of Trump and his self-serving interests, we are a less secure, more vulnerable nation.

Even before taking office, Trump has failed us as Commander-in-Chief of the United States.

#blametrump
#silenceisconsent