Saturday, October 12, 2013

Easy Saturday. Comments on technology.

Nothing much planned for the day.  I cleaned out some of the stems from plants I cut down over the last couple of days and cut down the cayenne peppers.  They say we might get rain today which I hope--I saw a couple of containers that could use some water.  I need to cut back the tansy and did part of that yesterday.  Got a pleasant surprise.  I thought one of my two foxglove plants had given up.  They didn't really like the shade they got from my overgrown tomato plants.  But I found a bit of new growth so it may decide to live after all.  But I lost both of my lavenders and my small rosemary.  I will replace them next season.

I just got the little message from Google that they are making changes on the privacy policy and how they will share your profile and pictures.  I don't put any pictures of myself or family or many of other people who might wind up in my pictures.  I have minimal information on my profile. I do not endorse anything and haven't clicked like on any products.  I can sympathize with your frustration, Kay.  We never know where what we put out there will wind up and, often--usually, have no control over it.  And the policies change without notice.  Also we have to remember that these companies are in business and will do what ever they can to increase their profits what ever it does to their users.  By the time they cure a problem the damage is done.  But that is a problem that pervades our technological lives.  We depend on these computer driven systems and greedy, insensitive service providers aren't the only problem we face.  Chicago rolled out a new automated fare payment system that has a number of glitches: multiple charges for a single fare, charging fares on other cards that happen to be in the rider's pocket, etc.  Adobe recently suffered a hacker attack that exposed customer information.  I have read about repeated attacks on banks, governments, businesses.  Computers are some what like air--you don't realize how much we depend on it until we are suffocating.  Huffington Post has a bit on the new policy here.

In a way Google's attempt to use its customers' pictures and comments in advertising isn't all that surprising.  Our economy and culture has swum in a sea of advertising for the last hundred years.  It only gets more pervasive with each year.  Think about that the next time you want to throw a brick through your TV screen because of the suffocating inundation of ads interrupting your favorite show.

So the House of Representatives is finally going to move the farm bill to conference committee.  All it took was a freak blizzard that has killed some tens of thousands of cattle.  If they (particularly the Repthuglicans) hadn't insisted on (their own) ideological purity a farm bill could have been passed and channels of aid in place already.

1 comment:

Kay Dennison said...

They foisted Google+ on me ascrewed up some other accounts I'm threatening to sue their sorry backside. I've been online since about '87 & I resent their messing with accounts that I've had for over 20 years. Trust me when I tell you that screwing with my accounts (i.e.personal data) should be actionable & I'm still not sure how bad it is. Grrrr . . .