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Archive for the ‘The Web’ Category

To be honest, Facebook isn’t shedding any tears.  I was barely active in Facebook anyway.  Facebook has been a convenient Rolodex to use from time to time.  My wall is closed except for posts from this blog, and I don’t post pictures.

It is not that I don’t like people.  More specifically, it isn’t that I don’t like YOU people.  It’s just that, well, my social circles  don’t all overlap.

What do you do when your boss, or an associate requests you as a friend on Facebook?  In fact, it is a bit messy whenever anybody requests to be your friend on Facebook.  Refusing is dicey, and ignoring it requires a little white lie of “oh I don’t check often.”  Let’s face it, it was ok when only the current “in” techie crowd was on Facebook when it first started, but now EVERYONE is on Facebook.  My boss… my mom.  Heck I’m sure my niece will get an account soon.  I don’t always want to share the same thing with my buddy from college as I would my parents or my niece.

Google+ has an answer, which is to immediately put people into “Circles” of friends, and then allow you to share anything with certain circles only.  This fits perfectly with how I share things in my life.  Some random picture will go to my friends, my pictures of my family will go (only) to my family, and my boss and work associates can get something reasonably clean and civilized, like a picture from a new restaurant.

The reality is that my all my social contacts are not the same.  It’s not that anyone is more or less important to me, but simply the fact that the stuff I share with a four year old family member is different from those that I share with thirty somethings at a tailgate, which are different from things I share with people with which I do business.

Google+ simply fits my reality better.

For now.

edit:

A nice review by David Pogue at the the New York Times here:

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Bravo, open source community.

A group of prominent OOo contributors eventually decided to fork the project, creating an alternative called LibreOffice. They founded a nonprofit organization called The Document Foundation (TDF) in order to create a truly vendor-neutral governance body for the software. LibreOffice is based on the OOo source code, but it also incorporates a large number of other improvements driven by its own developer community.

Most of the major companies that have historically been involved in OOo development have moved to stand behind TDF and LibreOffice, including Red Hat, Novell, Google, and Canonical. LibreOffice has also succeeded in attracting a significant portion of OOo’s independent contributors. The ecosystem-wide shift in favor of LibreOffice has left Oracle as the only major party still developing OOo, forcing the company to compete against the broader community.

via Oracle gives up on OpenOffice after community forks the project.

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Beacon is back, and nobody notices.  What, you thought Facebook is free?

Now, users’ off-Facebook activities are basically part of the Facebook ecosystem thanks to “Likes” published all over the Web. If you click the Facebook Like button on any given site, that data is transmitted to your own Facebook profile and can be promoted by marketers in ads to your friends. We knew something like this was coming—it was rumored last year in advance of Facebook’s f8 conference—but it’s still fascinating to watch the evolution of Beacon and the very different reactions this time around. There are certainly users who are unhappy with their check-ins and likes being used to generate more cash, but the privacy concerns appear to be mostly gone—for now, that is.

via No opting out of Facebook turning your check-ins, likes into ads.

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To me, this battle illuminates two rival religious approaches, within the Catholic church and any spiritual tradition. One approach focuses upon dogma, sanctity, rules and the punishment of sinners. The other exalts compassion for the needy and mercy for sinners — and, perhaps, above all, inclusiveness.

via Tussling Over Jesus – NYTimes.com.

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I posted about this a few days ago.  Thankfully, it looks like Facebook reconsidered, in no small part due to the “useful feedback” (aka nerd-rage uproar) that ensued.

I know I’m already deleted my personal info, although there is, of course, no guarantee that it was ACTUALLY deleted.  *grumble*

From Lifehacker

Facebook has put off its plan to allow developers access to users’ phone numbers and home addresses. The company posted an update on its Developer Blog Tuesday morning, saying that it got “useful feedback” about the decision and that it would be making changes so that it’s clearer when users are about to share such sensitive info. As a result, the “feature” is being turned off until a better solution is found.

via Facebook thinks twice on giving dev access to phone, address data.

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As an owner of a Samsung Galaxy S (Epic on Sprint), I’ve been waiting for the Froyo update.   I’m still waiting, long past the promised date of “end of 2010.”

An unconfirmed post was placed the xda-developer’s forum, and has hit all the gadget websites in the past few days.  It’s unconfirmed, but not flatly denied, at least not yet.

Samsung will need to do some PR repair soon.  I can hack my epic, but I’m seriously reconsidering recommending it or any Samsung to anyone else, particularly those who aren’t tech-savvy enough to custom load it themselves.

In the past, most phone updates would mainly consist of critical and maintenance updates. Carriers almost never want to incur the cost of a feature update because it is of little benefit to them, adds little to the device, and involves a lot of testing on the carrier end. Android has changed the playing field, however – since the Android Open Source Project is constantly being updated, and that information being made widely available to the public, there is pressure for the phone to be constantly updated with the latest version of Android. With most manufacturers, such as HTC, Motorola, etc. This is fine and considered a maintenance upgrade. Samsung, however, considers it a feature update, and requires carriers to pay a per device update fee for each incremental Android update.

via The Samsung Secret – Why U.S. Galaxy S Phones run Android 2.1 Still – xda-developers.

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Timing and planning ahead can save you money.  Even better, is a reference so you CAN time and plan ahead.  Take a look over at Lifehacker for a great reference, chart, and explanation:

Good things, and better prices, come to those who wait. Buy your furniture now, laptops in April, appliances in September, and make other better-timed purchases with our buying guide, and you’ll save a few bucks with off-season, inventory-moving prices.

via The Best Times to Buy Anything in 2011.

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Hey, who doesn’t like free?  Also a PDF converter is very useful for lots of stuff that I do, so I went ahead and gave this a try.  The lifheacker link also has instructions on how to do it without paying for software.

Still, free until February 5th, 2011.

 

PDFs are an extremely popular document format, but come with the annoying caveat that you can’t edit them without an expensive program like Adobe Acrobat. If you find that this is a major hindrance, you can convert them to other editable formats with PDFZilla: it can batch convert any number of PDF files into Word documents, RTF, TXT, Images, HTML, and more in just a few clicks. It’s a heck of a lot easier than buying Adobe Acrobat, and pretty convenient if all you need to do is jump in a document and do some tweaks.

PDFZilla is normally $29.95, but you can grab it for free right now until February 5th, 2011. PDFZilla is for Windows only.

via PDFZilla Batch Converts PDFs to Editable Formats, Is Free Until February.

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The policy is not reassuring at all.  I know that I’m removing what little personal information existed on Facebook.

If you you aren’t already paranoid enough to remove your address and cell phone number from Facebook, today might be the day. Facebook has decided to give its third-party app developers API access to users’ address and phone numbers as they collectively get more involved in the mobile space, but privacy experts are already warning that such a move could put Facebook users at risk.

via New privacy concerns for Facebook over phone numbers, addresses.

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For those of you who miss using quick command-line shortcuts to accomplish tasks, this post by Lifehacker might be for you.  I have to admit that sometimes it is more trouble that it is worth, but I also like the ability to quickly add something to my google calendar without going through 5 clickes to even get to the page.

 

It works like this: when you enter text on a web application, the result is often the web page sending that text along to a server as part of a URL. A Google search for lifehacker android results in a URL of http://www.google.com/search?q=lifehacker+android. By finding the right URLs—for Google Calendar events, Google Maps directions, Twitter statuses, and more—we can use keywords in the address bar to submit text to any of those web sites.

via How To Perform Nearly Any Task From Your Browser’s Address Bar.

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