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: October 22-28, 2012

Summary of this week:

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

Monday October 22, 2012

Ooops "Android applications downloaded by as many as 185 million users can expose end users' online banking and social networking credentials, e-mail and instant-messaging contents because the programs use inadequate encryption protections" Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

A closer look inside Windows 8.

This is a small sample size, but five people were allowed to try Windows 8 and they were all confused.

The HP Envy x2 (what a name). This is a Windows 8 machine that is a traditional portable computer with the display popping off easily to be a tablet. This continues a theme with the Windows 8 machines: they can be a tablet, but they put much more emphasis on the keyboard than Apple does. The hope is that they keyboard and things like MS Office will appeal to corporate users. It is nice to sell 10,000 computers at a time.

And LG announces similar products.

American Movie Classics returns to the Dish Network. I no longer have to see those annoying "you can't see this on Dish" announcements during the AMC commercials. Now if we can just get rid of those political ads...

One person's attempts at using the Raspberry Pi. It is not easy. The hope is that so many people can afford it that someone, or dozens or someones, will publish kits that help the rest of us.

Seagate and Apple come together with a USB 3.0, three TeraByte external disk. I can't fill a disk that big, but I know people who can.

This is a great photograph - street basketball with a space shuttle driving down the street.

Magnetic tape is making a comeback for long-term data archives. Why not? It is inexpensive. This is what is called the "memory hierarchy." Why do people forget these things?

I shake my head when I see political ads in America this year about "the war on women." Look here and many other places about the three deadliest words in the world, "It's a girl."

Chrysler would have been better without a government bailout.
It is too early to tell, but the $250 Chromebook may clobber a lot of other product categories in the marketplace.

Here is a "do duh." Politicians and their staffs are confused about big data and other such things.

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Tuesday October 23, 2012

There is an Apple event today. The world expects a smaller iPad. What we are less sure about are the desktop computers.

DropBox updates its iOS software to accomodate the larger screen on the iPhone 5.

Microsoft updates its Office Web Apps Suite.

Clip this camera to your shirt and you have a photo every 30 seconds. That might be fun.

Microsoft has plans to create the era of gesture control. There are many situations when it is not practical to touch the computer. There are also many situations where it is not practical to talk to the computer.

Researchers have found a way to boost the actual sending and receiving of data by an order of magnitude. It has to do with the re-sending of data or the re-sending of much less data.

"I also wish that during the years I was in public office, I had had this firsthand experience about the difficulties business people face every day. That knowledge would have made me a better U.S. senator and a more understanding presidential contender." George McGovern, one of the all-time liberals and regulators in the U.S. Senate. Hmmm, maybe he has a point there. Let's see, before you can regulate business, you must show experience in business. Before you can regulate health care, you must show experience in health care. Sounds good to me, but I am naive about such.

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency is switching from the Blackberry to the iPhone.

The ethics of study drugs like Adderall. The intellectuals can no longer shame the atheletes about performance enhancing drugs.

After 11 years, some businesses are still using Windows XP. Microsoft wants them to move on.

Yahoo has a better-than-expected financial quarter. It was Marissa Mayer's first quarter on the job.

Some ideas, some pretty darn good, for reinventing that place we call "college."

See this, it isn't a photograph; it is a pencil drawing.

At one time, the Soviets prepared for nuclear war by digging deep tunnels. One complex in Moscow was since bought and remodeled as a museum and entertainment center.

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Wednesday October 24, 2012

A look at Apple's Fusion Drive being offered on its updated computers.

Apple held a big event. The announcements included: The iPad mini at $330, updated (much thinner) iMac desktop computers13" MacBook Pro with expensive retina  display,  an iPad 4 (what?), and an updated Mac mini. I am most interested in the iMac as the one I use at home is six years old or something like that.

Some governemtn organizations don't have much to do to while away the hours. The EU is now after Microsoft for not offering browser options or something lame like that.

The 25 most popular passwords for 2012. Phew, none of mine are on the list.

Some good work on removing the blur from images. Good results.

Facebook had a good financial quarter and its stock went up.

Reviews of the Microsoft Surface are in - people don't like the device.

Oh, this is great news (NOT). Hackers have stolen credit card information of Barnes and Noble shoppers. The theft was at 63 different stores. I shop there and I use a credit card. Great. Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

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Thursday October 25, 2012

Must see video of a walking robot from Boston Dynamics.

Frustration and anger about Apple upgrading The New iPad after only seven months.

Google Street Views is now venturing into trails like at the Grand Canyon.

And in Europe, Google and others have created a service that helps you blur your house, your business, yourself, etc. from Street View photos.

This week's Apple event had nothing to do with education despite the media's claims to the contrary.

A closer look at Samsung's new Chromebook.

And Google is setting another new record - this one for money spent lobbying.

Tablets, tablets everywhere. This is the second time we have seen so many tablets. The first time we saw all this they all flopped but the iPad. What will happen this time?

AMD can't fire people fast enough to save money.

Speaking of jobs, defense contractors aren't hiring anyone. Instead, they are saving their money for a rainy day. The uncertainty in policy from the current administration is one of the leading causes of high unemployment. The media doesn't mention that much, but it is there.

If you are looking for performance in the new Mac minis, buy the quad core models.

Windows XP is 11 years old today. It has been one of the most successful products in the history of Microsoft. Windows 8 is officially announced today. Microsoft can only hope for a tenth of the success of XP.

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Friday October 26, 2012

Microsoft officially unveils Windows 8 and Windows RT. There are many posts about this today. Here is one.

A closer look at Windows RT.

Surveillance of citizens is moving away from humans, some of whom have a little common sense.

Congress is considering restrictions on the domestic use of UAVs for surveillance. Good for them.

Apple sold five million Apple TV units in the last year. Not bad for a hobby product.

Yet another redesign of the umbrella. No, this one won’t make it in the market either.

Apple is already sold out of the white iPad mini.

Pinterest climbs into the top 50 most-visited sites.

Once again, the presidential candidates are missing on the issue of education.

Apple now sells high-priced desktop computers and low-priced iPad mini. Beware if you try to make a living selling things in between.

Here is good news (not). Our kids must be smarter than we were because IQ test scores are rising. Do you think that maybe the IQ tests are lowering standards?

What is a week without a TSA story. This time, however, the courts are involved in the idiocy.

A small milestone in the advancement of computing power. The new Mac mini is as powerful as the Mac Pro was in 2010.

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Saturday October 27, 2012

whoops, someone hacked into South Carolina's Revenue Department and got 3.6 million social security numbers almost 400,000 credit card numbers. Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

The new MacBook Pro with 13" Retina Display wins PC Magazine Editor's choice award.

The government of Pakistan will now monitor all emails and other communications that leave the country.

Computer programmers are well paid. But for how long? In the late 1970s I heard about how one day soon any body who could read could learn to program and real soon now programmers would be like carpenters or something. I guess those people were wrong.

After one day of Windows 8, decent but not spectacular demand. This is an operating system update. They really wanted to have a bigger splash for all those Windows 8 tablets, but that is the problem. There are a lot of Windows 8 tablets out there, and people need time to think and choose the one they want. When Apple has a new tablet, there is only one choice: buy or not.

There are signs that Afghanistan is coming into a telecommunications infrastructure.

Amazon Web Services went down Monday for several hours taking Reddit and a few others with it.

I like this - the urban desk. We are moving back to the idea of multi-purpose furniture that fits in small places.

NOAA has fumbled satellite replacements, so they may soon be without some weather satellites.

The price of electronics has fallen 10% to 15% - all except hearing aids. Their prices have risen about 8% a year. This is what happens with increased government involvement.

Wikipedia may be nearing completion - nothing else to write. I doubt that.

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Sunday October 28, 2012

The Apple mini iPad continues to sell out.

The Internet project has now saved 10 petabyte of data. Will any of that be readable in 100 years? How about in 10 years?

A look at the group of Nestle's employees who watch the Internet.

Google was to show new Android tablets and phones in New York on Monday. Hurricane Sandy has forced them to postpone. Here is the Northern Virgina suburbs of Washington D.C., people are buying lots of batteries and milk to wait out possible power outages. We shall see.

Adapteva hit its Kickstarter goal and will be making a 16-core, credit card sized 26 gigaflop computer - $99.

New Apple store in Palo Alto - lots of glass.

Thoughts on becoming a professional at your craft.

If you don’t have a masterpiece to write today, use some writing prompts and write anyway. The practice will only help.l

Productivity tips for National Novel Writing Month.
Here is one.
Here is part two.
Here is part three. And here are some more.

This post aims at helping you find a writing habit that works for you.

Thoughts on your writing space. I don’t have one. I seem to be able to write just about anywhere. The bad thing about that is that I can’t justify going on a cruise or to a retreat or owning a cabin in the woods or anything neat like that.

Some check points to see if you are ready to go into freelance writing full time.

A few ways to earn an extra $1,000 a month.

Tips for beginning writers. I usually don’t link to things like these, but these are pretty good.

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