Dwayne Phillips ' Day Book

Items I happen to view each day. Science, Techonology, Management, Culture, and of course Writing

This is my day book for this week. I have modeled this after science fiction and computer writer Jerry Pournelle's view, or as he calls it, his Day Book. I encourage you to see Jerry Pournelle's site and subscribe to his services.

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This week: August 27-September 2, 2012

Summary of this week:

Monday - Tuesday - Wednesday - Thursday - Friday - Saturday - Sunday

Monday August 27, 2012

Saudi Aramco, world's largest oil producer, is hit by a cyber attack that took down 30,000 workstations. Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

And hackers dump millions of records onto the net for everyone to see. Repeat same qustion as above.

Google supplies Samsung with the OS for the smartphones. Samsung pays out $1Billion in fines and has to pull products off shelves. Google shudders a bit.

Samsung's stock price fell 7% in one day.

The Lenovo IdeaPad 9" model is at Best Buy for $300.

A look at GIFs, those little video clips that play themselves over and over.

Photos of the HOLLYWOOD sign taken from behind.

Does anyone trust the reviews they read online? Reviews really help sell products, so are the reviewers being paid by the producers?

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Tuesday August 28, 2012

A little print server $100 allows you to print from mobile device to an older printer.

Michael Dell isn't too worried about the "post-PC" era. There were 380 million PCs sold last year. I use one at work all day as do all my co-workers. Those personal computers haven't left the planet yet.

Google has put up a crisis web site for Hurricane (still a tropical storm) Isaac. Good web site. I have several dozen relatives in the path of this one.

Given Apple has won its suit against Samsung in America, here is a preliminary list of Samsung products that Apple feels should be banned in America.

Some people drive distracted, i.e., they are lousy drivers whether or not they are talking on a cell phone. Yes, these feel-good efforts at banning cell phones and texting and everything are just that - efforts to make some people feel good.

A peek at the Sony VAIO Duo 11. It is a Windows 8 tablet that converts to something else or other.

The FAA will reconsider the ban on use of electronic devices on airliners during...you know the if it has an on-off button on it, turn it off silliness.

Will Quora be the next Wikipedia?

Javascript tips for non-specialists (people like me).

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Wednesday August 29, 2012

Hurricane Isaac hit Louisiana over night. It is moving slowly, so they will have a windy and rainy day today.

A look at the inexpensive technologies that make Internet surveillance of subjects possible.

A peak ahead at the next generation Intel Atom System-On-a-Chip (SoC).

And a fond look back at the floppy disk. I used 8" floppies in grad school, then 5 1/4", and so on. I miss them.

Lexmark is quitting the inkjet printer business.

Firefox version 15 arrived today.

I couldn't pass on this one: Do you still write checks? Yes, I do.

Here is a great example of misguided use of technology. The story proclaims how supercomputers are helping New Orleans prepare for hurricanes. The computers are used to model rises in tide and such. What is really needed are competent and honest people in city government.

The Apple Genius training manual has leaked out to the public. Of course it contains phrases to tell customers so the customer will feel better. Yes, this could be seen as manipulation. I see it as a definite improvement in tech services.

I noticed this ad this morning: The Google tablet popped up on the Google search home page.

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Thursday August 30, 2012

The Dell XPS Duo 12 - a convertable laptop and slate (I guess that is another name for a tablet). This is a clever mechanical design. I don't know that many people will actually buy it.

And the Dell XPS 10 - a tablet with a keyboard dock. Dell doesn't want to leave the keyboard behind.

And now Dell adds a touch screen to its 27" screen all in one computer. I like that more than the prior two announcements. The all in one computer is a proven machine that people use in the office.

HP tries to keep up with the X2 Envy - an 11" screen tablet with keyboard dock.

So, ASUS joins in with tablets and keyboard docks. Someone will sell a few of these things, and several companies will sell none of these things.

The GNU Image Manipulation Program is now available as a native application on Apple computers. Hurray for GIMP version 2.8.2.

This is stupid. Let people overseas go hungry, we are burning our food in our gas tanks. What hath Congress wrought with ethanol?

Apple's share of the smartphone market in China has been cut in half. The Chinese companies and Samsung are hurting Apple.

Sergey Brin may revive a practice of the super rich as he spends his money to improve the town of Los Altos, Ca. Yes, the super rich used to do this all the time by building libraries, hospitals, museums, paying for symphonies, and the like.

A call to stop wasting time on Facebook and resume writing software that increases productivity.

I like this post. Thoughts on A Generation Lost in the Bazaar.  "The bazaar meme advocated by Raymond, "Just hack it," as opposed to the carefully designed cathedrals of the pre-dot-com years, unfortunately did, not die with the dot-com madness, and today Unix is rapidly sinking under its weight."

Haier shows a 46" transparent display. The age of useful augmented reality is quickly approaching.

VMWare releases Parallels Desktop 8 for Mac.

A look back at the Trapper Keeper (used by my sons, not by me). "Trapper Keepers -- the way they combined all of one's desktop tools -- were an early incarnation of the smartphone. Portable, customizable and deeply personalized. Interestingly enough, Trapper Keepers faded from popularity in the '90s just as smartphones made their presence known. Coincidence? I think not."

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Friday August 31, 2012

No Internet viewing this morning as instead I had breakfast with some fine gentlemen.

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Saturday September 1, 2012

I love this item: a cassette tape to iPod audio converter.

The 27" screen iMac is in short supply. This adds to the rumors that Apple will update this line of computers in October.

Full-time travel - it is different if you are retired.

Facebook's stock continues to tumble, and people continue to point fingers.

Amazon is building a tablet that will have ads displayed on the screen to keep the consumer price lower.

Can electronics stores survive? Of course the answer is, "No!" Then you look at the Apple retail stores and scratch your head.

As for further questions of the day, who needs an 84" TV? Several companies are betting that someone out there will buy them.

Common sense for (public, i.e., government-run) school internet safety policies. Trouble ahead, mixing "common sense" and "public schools."

Another look at why the Linux desktop has not succeeded.

This dynamo mounted on a bicycle wheel can charge your cell phone. Of course it can, why haven't people been building these since the first brick phone hit the market?

Interesting twist here, when you buy your new PC that comes with Windows 8, Microsoft will let you back track to a copy of Windows 7 (or even Vista).

ZAGG shows two new iPad case-and-keyboards.

Lenovo shows a new line of portable computers in the IdeaPad genre.

This story is all over the Internet today, so it must be important. Pirate Bay co-founder Gottfrid Svartholm was arrested in Cambodia.

Wal-Mart is experimenting with a self checkout system that uses the iPhone.

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Sunday September 2, 2012

Forget all the other tech news, this is what tech is about. The disabled can control this flying bot with their mind. It sends back video so they can go and see what their body won't allow.

A video of Windows RT running on a Samsung tablet.

Some members of Congress want to know why the U.S. Department of Justice is seizing domain names without due process. A few citizens would also like answers.

Interesting site - you input your age, height, and weight and it tells you your body mass index (not unique) and then compares that to everyone else in the world (is unique and fascinating).

The One Laptop Per Child effort has a major upgrade to its OS and other software.

Apple may be discarding the lousy ear buds and moving to ear things that actually provide good sound.

And now we move to many of the sites about writing that I viewed this week.

A writing exercise that helps you change your mood. This one takes you from sad to happy. You can modify the exercise for many other moods.

Lessons one writer learned while writing three novels.

A look back at how the hymn "It is Well with My Soul" was written. It came from pain. Write about your pain.

Ten things to do to make life worthwhile.  I am not sure why I even clicked on this one on the RSS reader, but I am glad I did. This actually has good information. I like the parts about doing one big thing everyday and then hit the reset.

And here is another one like it. Again, I am not sure why I clicked on it, but I like these 12 lessons about writing from someone who has been writing for 12 years (only 12 years?).

No more excuses - do a blog. It is a web log; if nothing else do a paper log of your life. Write.

Dean Wesley Smith funded a fiction magazine (sort of) via Kickstarter. Good for him.

This three-year-old boy is in preschool. He is deaf. When he signs his name in American Sign Language it looks too much like a gun for the school district. The "adults" want him to change how he signs his name. Here we are in America - adults telling a child that his name frightens them. I feel sorry for those "adults."

Want to learn to be more productive? Cut your workday down to two to three hours. Notice what you ignore on your way to accomplishing your work.

In a similar vein, "Not just haphazardly saying no, but purposefully, deliberately, and strategically eliminating the nonessentials."

Notes on "easy breezy" writing. I think this is what I do most of the time when I am writing short story fiction.

I love this title: How to write like your teacher told you not to.

Tools to increase your productivity. I like this list as it includes 3x5 cards, a calendar, and a journal. Those have helped me.

Don't judge; instead, create.

It is okay, for some writers, to work on more than one book at a time. If you consider life as a part of working on a book, like I do, you will always be working on many books at the same time.

This post takes a different perspective with five things you don't need to be a writer.

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