Thursday, February 26, 2015

Tech then and now

Logo for The Walt Disney Company
Logo for The Walt Disney Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I was browsing MOTHERBOARD and I came across this gem.

The article is on how Disney made this (typical) what-LSD-might-be-like 80's video on computers to promote "Tron" - also a what-LSD-might-be-like 80's video.

The article itself is quite interesting, but if you are short on time, here's the video:

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Amazon Associates Account Closed?!

Amazon hef
Amazon hef (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Imagine my surprise, when I logged in to my Amazon Associates account today to find that it had been closed.

Turns out that I'm still pretty insecure. I automatically assumed that it was some unintentional TOS violation on my part. I immediately emailed them and asked them to resend the closure notice and that I'm sorry for any inconvenience, that I might have caused.
Fortunately, it wasn't. As it turned out, it was the State of Vermont's fault.

Okay, it's a little more complicated than that. When I changed my address to Texas on my Amazon account, I had assumed that my address had also changed on my Associate's account. So it was partly my fault.

However, Social programs costs the state more than what it would cost charitable organization and that money has to come from somewhere.

VT had made a new complicated tax law to make sure that only the hardworking, industrious, middle class are taxed. You don't want to tax the poor, obviously, and of course if you tax the rich, they won't stay and pay the extensive property tax or pay the high "luxury" tax (restaurants and hotels).

Unfortunately, eventually, the only people left to tax will be the rich.

In the meantime, I live in Texas, which has NO income tax. I got a new Amazon Associates ID. Unfortunately, this means that all of the items I had promoted have the wrong ID on it so unless I go change that ID, it's likely I will only be making money on future referrals.

For those of you who have their account closed, don't assume the worse. Email them. The support team had been very helpful to me and even though I can't get those old IDs back, at least I was able to get something back.

Oh, and... Thanks a lot, Vermont.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Welcome to 2015

Now that the holidays have died down and I've had time to regroup, I'm finally posting again!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

See you in 2015

It's the holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, etc) and we have been a little more involved with a little more social activities this year. This means I have even less time to blog. Combine that with trying to time blogging with when the internet is working, and I don't get to blog much.

There is something I can do offline, and that's revamp MOMĒTEK and relaunch it in January. At the same time come up with a plan to be able to post at least once a week. If I have to go to the library to upload, then to the library I go.

In the meantime, I will be posting from my phone to my personal blog when I can, and it's likely I'll start posting more frequently to this blog.

So, see you until 2015!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Why I Left Facebook and other Ramblings

Facebook logo
Facebook logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Last week, I made an announcement on giving up on Facebook. By Tuesday, I realized that it wasn't necessarily Facebook causing me grief, but the entire internet. I found that I was tired of trying to time my online time on my laptop to when the internet was working, only to find that the internet connection wasn't there.

This would cause a problem with the rest of the day, as I try to do clean and check my laptop at the same time with hopes that the internet finally connected. This is terribly inefficient. Not only I wasn't getting anything useful done, I would only stick reading the news or browsing Facebook This wouldn't require much of an attention span. If I were interrupted by the kids, I wouldn't feel so guilty not finishing the news feed.

As a result, I started to become burned out. I guess I get burned out easily when I do things that are useless. No, keeping up with the family isn't useless, but watching the umpteenth cute and hilarious kitten/dog video is... So is passing on the umpteenth "idiot politician flavor of the day" picture meme, or watching the millionth poor sucker getting the tar beat out of him by some cop or other poor sucker.

To be honest, I didn't do anything useful in the limited time I did spend on the computer. I ended up playing Minecraft for a total of two hours in one week. Possibly less than what the average American spent watching TV.

Actually, I modded it mostly and reminisce on the days when I was capable of creating these mods. When was the last time I programmed anything? I think it was 4 or 5 years ago. Okay, if you don't count web design with a WYSIWYG editor, it's been longer than that.

There is good news. Rumor has it that the RV park changed internet providers with fiber optics. I hadn't asked yet to see for myself but I have noticed the change in speed. The WayPoints still cut out way too frequently, but we are a bit far from the nearest one. I'm not sure what could be interfering with the signal. It could be that our antennas are not strong enough.

We have considered buying our own repeater with a stronger receiver. In the meantime, I formulated a plan. After all, being offline has allowed me to formulate one.
  1. I still WON'T be on Facebook until at least after the elections. Besides not wanting to create more enemies of people I would have otherwise gotten along with, I do have to retain my sanity for my kids - at least what's left of it.
  2. I WILL be blogging on one of three blogs. This one, my family blog, and my new story blog.
  3. I WON'T be deleting my Facebook. I do have a lot of family who want to keep up with what we are doing. So all of my blogs will post to Twitter, than to Facebook. This actually means more family updates as I will have a little more time for it.
  4. I WILL be revamping MOMETEK (but not to the extreme). Since we have been cautious on how much money we spend, it's likely I will delve more into life tips for simplifying than on products.
  5. I WILL eventually be vblogging again. Not sure if I'm going to wait for my new laptop, which I desperately need. My current laptop heats up too easily if I use anything graphic intensive. Since we are replacing the desktop (which is used by everyone else), it's likely I won't be getting one soon.
  6. I WILL be checking in on Google+ comments to my posts, but not that I have a choice. My Blogger blogs are all integrated with Google+ so, if you want to follow me were you are more likely to be noticed, you can follow me there.
Google+ is a grey area. G+ seems to be a little more flexible on what I want to see. People follow me, but I don't have to follow them (there are a lot of people who follow me who don't put up any posts). The posts that matter most do end up in my timeline and I can choose what group I want to see.

For instance, I can choose just to see family, religious, or Tech posts (those are three of the categories I have for my circles).

So there you have it. Why I left Facebook (and most of the internet). It's not permanent, unless the world ends sometime soon.