I was interviewed by the Ganett Papers over the weekend about Google Glass. Mainly it was to discuss, the basics.
Read more here:
I was interviewed by the Ganett Papers over the weekend about Google Glass. Mainly it was to discuss, the basics.
Read more here:
If you know me personally, you know that I’m a very public person. I am also a very private person when it comes to certain things. Having the right to privacy, whether you choose so or not, is something I want to always have regardless if I choose to or not. If I choose to be engaged in social media, it is my choice, but I have to make sure that I only invoke my right (or lack) of privacy, and not anyone else’s.
When I take photos, I NEVER tag people in the shared album. I always ask the people, even if I can share the album. While, I assume, I’m in my right to tag someone, out of respect I don’t. What I assume is safe to post, may not be for everyone.
There is a very legitimate privacy concern over glass, when it comes to being in a place where cameras and recording devices are prohibited. In these places recording devices are banned. you don’t need to make another law specifically for glass. it is assumed that any recording device will be prohibited. The goal of Glass is to push the limits of technology. It is not a new way to spy on people. if Google didn’t put a camera, people would complain that it didn’t have a recording element.I believe that Google Glass is a huge milestone in technology. I believe that is a net positive gain for convenience. Remember Google’s mission statement / company policy is “do not evil.”
I will say that people are not paying the all this money to show us the very worst part of Google Glass. They have a vested interest in making a positive impact. I bet all the Glass toting population are very nice people who want to see this technology become mainstream. If the rumored iWatch has Siri that must mean it could also be a recording device. Are we banning watches?
The violation of one person’s privacy rights (implicit or implied) is a huge concern. The underlying issue is that the technology has already been given a stigma of being something that it is not. I am not going to walk around recording everyone. Just because I have a recording device doesn’t mean I’m going to use it for nefarious purposes. Those same devices have existed for years, but somehow we trust the user. We trust the user because we have the same technology, and understand how it works.
When you talk to someone who doesn’t understand what Facebook is, we hear the same privacy invading rhetoric. “I don’t like ‘the Facebook’ because it [Facebook] steals our information.” It very well could be true, but the evidence used, is not based on fact, but on rumor that someone told them. This argument also comes from the same people who won’t give you their address or phone number out of privacy concerns, but will friend you on Facebook ten minutes later.
People are already trying to pigeonhole Glass into a category of spying and video recording mainly because that is all they know. We don’t ban pencils because someone can stab someone with it. The fear of the unknown, has been led to the forefront. Just like any new technology, without real analysis, the cynics are going to complain about everything. How about we focus on real privacy concerns rather than potential recording in public places. I don’t hear complaints that your ISP just hands over browser history with only a governmental request. What about the data leakage that occurs when your friends play FarmVille? You do know, Zynga, by virtue of your friends playing the games, has access to your Facebook account?
Let’s address the problem when it comes up. Until then, let us all marvel in the new technology. We have much bigger problems than some people looking funny who may want to take your picture in public without your consent.
After my last post asking for a way to contact you, I thought about what friendship is. Recently my friends have been moving away, and I’m left looking to add to my core set of friends. It got me thinking about what I want in a friendship.
To be honest, there isn’t a checklist to be my friend, but rather a mantra: ’Just Be Friendly!” All I want is someone who understands what friendship is, and acts friendly. If someone calls, return their calls in a timely matter. If they ask for your opinion, give it to them. If they want to hang out, hang out with them. I understand we are all busy, or have other obligations, but a good friend will explain to them, rather than hide behind the dreaded “I’m busy.”
I know this sounds cliché, but 2013 NEEDS to be one of looking to the future. We talked on the podcast about our resolutions, and mine once again was to lose weight. It is true that I didn’t achieve the weight loss I desired, but I did achieve other milestones, notably, running a 5 mile race, completing a tough mudder.
So why did I fail, and why is this year different? Well the first answer is easy, I got lazy. I did so well the year before, I thought in my hubris ways that I can eyeball weights and portion sizes of food. I always found an excuse for something. I walk everyday, but I don’t push myself. I drink 8 cups of water, and say I’m doing well, however I should be drinking more water. I gave up (diet) soda, but replaced it with more sweets. I did everything right, except I sabotaged myself.
So why is this year different? It isn’t different in the sense that I think I’m finally ready to really try. I know what to do, it is just a matter of executing the plan. That starts with accountability, paired with small goals to show progress.
If you want to follow along with some or all, this is what I’ll be doing to become more healthier:
At the end of August I came across this post on Google+ talking about for the next thirty days the author was going to cut out soda, and then sugary drinks. If you want more information click here for the talk by Matt Cutts on the 30 Day Challenge. I have had a long-standing addiction to diet soda, and that if someone else had the same problem, I too, could try for 30 days to cut diet soda out.
Diet soda was my addiction. Drinking a 2 liter bottle in a day wasn’t a challenge, but normal. When I would go to Costco, I could fill up a 20oz cup 3 or 4 times without even realizing it. Going out for dinner, I would ask the waiter to bring my two cups of soda first with my meal.
When discussing weight loss, people usually state the extremely obvious in an attempt to feign interest. Weight loss is a touchy subject, mainly because you are bringing to the foreground people’s insecurities. I don’t know too many people who are happy with their appearance. The first thing people tell you is cut out soda. I don’t drink regular soda, mainly because it is too sweet. Soda has 120 calories per 8 ounce serving (250 calories in a 20 ounce bottle). I explain to them that I drink diet soda; to that they say “It isn’t any better for you.”
The idea that diet soda isn’t better or worse than regular soda is an interesting idea. It has zero calories, but it is made with sugar substitute. So while High Fructose Corn Syrup is still artificial sugar, it is better for your than aspartame or Splenda. On one hand, I haven’t read evidence that it is unhealthy for you (as is it detrimental to your health), but putting chemicals in my body is something that I rather not do. What I did read is that your body tastes the sweet, and craves more. Craves to the point that you end up over eating later to try to get the sugar that the artificial chemicals did not provide.
On a related note, are diet juices just as bad as diet soda? In this case, just to break the habit, I’ll tackle this question another time. To go from all diet soda and crystal lite to just water will be almost impossible, so I want to overcome one challenge at a time.
The hardest part of #NoSodaSeptember were two parts. Part 1 was kicking the habit. The habit of carbonation was easily substituted with Seltzer. It was jolting at first because of the lack of taste. It did fulfill the carbonation element that I was craving, and with some will power the flavor craving went away. Part 2 was understanding that buying drinks outside of the house became harder.
Water costs more than soda outside of your home. Remember tap water is free, however you are paying for the bottle and colder temperature of the water. So when a can of soda is $0.75, and a 16.3 oz bottle water is $1.00, you fiscally want to purchase the soda. The (non) diet sugary drink was even more money, so that was an easy choice. When you are at the fast food restaurants, they hand you a cup. You have to look for the water option.
The hardest change was at Costco. Getting my hotdog and soda was commonplace. I had to train myself to get the lemonade. In a future thirty-day challenge, I will cut out all artificially flavored drinks, and stick to seltzer and coffee.
The first week was the hardest. I had to plan everything to make sure I didn’t get in a position that I was thirsty and lazy to the point that I would just give in to temptation. Once that first week ended, the rest of the month was easy.
It is now December, and I haven’t had a sip of soda (diet or otherwise). I don’t want to moderate my intake because I think that will with me justifying drinking more. If I keep my limit to zero, I can’t say, just one more.
The best part of the thirty-day challenge, was that it was only for 30 days. Thirty days are thirty days, and not some amorphous number that we can’t quantify. You can see the end if the challenge is something that is unfeasible. If you succeed, then continue with it.
UPDATE: I owned the SodaStream machine, and have tried many of their flavors. I will agree that their syrup is probably healthier than others, however, the idea is the same. While I have no actual studies on the negative effects of diet soda, even slightly healthier is something I don’t want to deal with. It is like saying this cigarette or drug is better for you than others. 30% healthier is still not healthier than not having the product.
*The longer answer below:
Before reading, I want you to know that I currently own and use, an iPad 2 with 3G, Kindle Keyboard with 3G, Galaxy Nexus LTE, Motorola Xoom 4G, and an HP Touchpad. My parents currently use the Xoom and the Touchpad, but I’ve had extensive time with each.
It is clear that I’m a huge kindle fan. Not just a kindle fan (even though that is my e-reader of choice), but overall an e-reader fan. Over the course of the last few years I have had issues with finding new books to read. When I ask for recommendations, I become more lost, than if I just picked something at random. So while I can’t solve the problem, I will not give recommendations, or not be offended, if the person doesn’t read it.
Each person has their own taste in reading. For me, it takes me a while to read a book, almost six weeks for an average sized novel. Mainly because I read right before bed, when I get a chance. I also have the problem that I cannot stop in the middle. I refuse to stop a book, unless it is so bad. No book has been “so bad” that I have stopped. Reading your recommendation is a six week endeavor, therefore it is a huge decision for me. For me this is the same for music and movies, however the difference is the duration of time. Four minutes for a song or ninety minutes for a movie is not a huge sacrifice. I will say that I don’t watch that many movies because of the 90 – 120 minutes that will generally be bad (read about the 99%).
There is no pandora for books. There is not 64 different elements to a book that pandora uses to do recommendations. Each person is uniquely different, and wants uniquely different books. With that said, you still need to find recommendations. Best seller lists panders to the cheapest books, and the most feel good genre. As I’m writing this, the top ten books are The Hunger Games trilogy, and the 50 Shades of Grey trilogy, with the set of each series also on the list. That great book is rarely found on a top ten list.
Editor’s choices are much better, but you are clueless to whom the editor is. The editor (collectively) chooses a book that the majority of people will like. Remember the majority of readers like cheap and easy fiction that is romance based (look at the top 100 sellers). So while there are good books, usually, it isn’t that great of a recommendation engine. I want to throw the conspiracy theory that payola is involved.
Reviews have the same problem that comments have. People are so polarized when it comes to their feelings that they write very persuasively. Nobody can agree on the merit of a book, and that causes hesitation because it is a financial and time commitment. How can you read a 4 star book? What makes the book 4 stars vs 5 stars? How can you read a book when a few people have said “the ending is terrible?” Is that an appropriate review?
What one needs to do is find someone who identifies with what you read, and that is HARD. There are social reading apps, and while I subscribe to them, I haven’t used them well. You want to have more friends, but those friends make the “what your friends are reading” feature useless. My nerdy friends are hugely into Sci-Fi, which I can’t stand. Those same nerdy friends are the only ones who use internet based recommendation services.
My list for a book is extensive. First off, I do not like fiction. I read mainly to learn something. Fantasy worlds, or a false sense of reality, I rather skip. Conversely, I’ll read history books, which is just the opposite of what I just said. Finally when I say fiction, I’ll take a no- true story that has a real life basis.
Science fiction, I do not want to read. Mainly because it violates the first rule. I bring this genre up specifically because I have other issues with it. Sci-fi is just too long. It also is written in elaborate series. So while I’m stereotyping sci-fi, it brings up the second issue that I rather skip.
Series are great if you want to continue the story. I don’t. Series mean there are more books to read, and you MUST finish it. Obviously if the first book is terrible, you can stop there, but if you enjoy the series, you have two more additional problems: 1) You have to read all the books, and 2) you have to wait for the next book. Ask any Robert Jordan fan, and they will elaborate more on this.
As a math nerd I am constantly questioned on why I do not like science fiction. Well I’ve explained why, and the short answer of it doesn’t appeal to me, gets people upset. It also reduces my recommendation pool because being a geek and liking Sci-fi goes together.
I do not want to read young adult, nor romance. It just doesn’t appeal to me. Like I’ve been saying all post, I want to learn something.
Finally, I want to read only Kindle books. I have already documented that I have to read on an ereader. I will not read a book that is on paper. Kindle only books also has the implication that it was written recently. I know classics have been ported over, but classics are some person (or publishers) reformatting. I want books that have been published specifically for kindle at the same time all the other editions went out. What I’m trying to say is that I want something recent. That may sound obnoxious, but that is what I want to read.
If you want to see the hodgepodge of books that I have read, friend me on goodreads
Over the course of the last few days, I learned one major thing. I am NOT a developer. Not even close. What else I learned was that I do know what I’m doing, and can follow with the big boys, I just can’t do it.
I spent a lot of time at the google plus sessions. My goal was to learn how to use the API. Specifically my goal (I failed at it), was to be able to put a horizontal +1 button with all of those who like it:
I was amazed to learn what I can do with the new History API. While understanding my limitation, I did just want to change the style of the +1 button. I wanted it specifically to be inline (just like you see above). I wanted to link to the page, be shareable, and be traceable (analytics already does this).
Checking out the developer site, they showed me what to do, and how to do it. It said “place this [insert spot] here. On the admin side to WordPress there are close to 50 different pages (5 or so more specific post related pages). I had no idea where the post was actually rendering.
All the googlers were willing to help, but they were at a loss. Their wordpress ninja eventually conceded that he rolled his own theme, as well as his own code for most of his site. He did work with me for a while, but the mutual agreement was to find a plugin that will incorporate this. Again, I’m not a developer, but I can read and understand code. Adding pre written code should be easier.
The first thing I am asking for is the ability to paste common social codes directly into the themes. How does someone paste adsense codes, google +1s, likes, shares, tweets, etc… without running through a widget or plugin. I know wordpress is supposed to focus on the content, and not the back end, but this should be simple [enough].
The other cool thing that the history API will eventually do is to pull google+ comments. I want to be able to pull google+ comments from plus itself and post them to wordpress. I haven’t thought about how exactly I want this to work, but I figure that if someone posts on plus, they are already authenticated, which means there doesn’t need to be a second wordpress authentication.
So feature request two is: Can we incorporate commenting from other networks without having to use disqus, or another third party?
I want harness google+. Google showed over the last few days that google+ is here to stay, and I’m excited. Read later on the features, but I want this to work, and I want to incorporate it into my blogging strategy.
I want to thank all the googlers who helped me over the last few days. This post was recommended by them, so they can ask Matt Mullenweg on how to proceed next.
My friend and cohost of @inthirty, (Harry Marks @harrycmarks) had a post on his site (http://curiousrat.com) that just went the blog post equivalent of viral. To the mac community he has been Fireball’d, to the business/VC people he has been Y-Combinator’ed, and to the rest of the internet he has been reddit’ed.
Everyone knows that I am a huge fan of ebooks, and how critical I am when it gets locked down beyond belief. The goal of a book is to read it. There is not much more to a book than lots of words on a page, virtual or not. I understand that people have to profit from it, and I’m not against making money, but what is profit and what is gouging?
Before I start, I think The Verge did a great job explaining the problem.(pops) and the NYTimes does a good job explaining the “Lending Problem.”(pops). I explain my issues with the “Lending Problem” too (pops).