Tech Wiz on low sign signs…

I am watching all the posts on Virily right now, people frustrated and annoyed by all the various issues we as users are experiencing. Using websites can be frustrating, and it is very important that people have a place to vent. I know that I am frustrated at times when I have to switch browsers as I try to post items. Or, what has happened more and more lately the time I have to sit and read posts is consumed by trying to connect and use Virily. It isn’t a condemnation nor am I considering at this point terminating my relationship, it is, however, frustrating.

All of us have a level of personal frustration every day of our lives. It is the reality of the world we live in that things can be frustrating. But it is also important when we can, to remove as many variables from the situation and make sure we are helping the admin team of Virily. When we post about the issues, try to include as much information as you can. What computer are you using (include the processor type)? What Operating system are you using? What browser and browser version are you using. Anything recently changed or using a specific virus/spam/malware package note as well.

The more information we share, the more likely someone is to spot the pattern. The more data the team has, the more likely we are to figure out what is wrong. My grandfather once told me a story that I will end with today.

“There was a barbershop that had a low sign. Every time people came out of the shop they bumped their heads on the sign. They complained to the Barber, who put up a sign on the door that said, low sign, duck. ½ the people still bumped their heads on the sign. But, whose fault is it then?”

We need the virily low sign, sign!

.doc

Tech Wiz

Tech Wiz wandering technical issues…

I know over the years that I have wandered down some rabbit holes as a technologist. I’ve looked at and considered technologies that other people looked at and said, nope. In that journey, I know that I have picked many horses that didn’t place, didn’t even in many cases make it out of the starting gates. But I still love looking ahead. It is a part of why I love technology (it is always changing). That said I also know that is something that frustrates people as well, the always changing evolution. It does make me wonder sometimes, but more because I know I need to stop and relax sometimes. The reality of where people are is really important when we consider fixing problems that people have.

Over the last few days, I’ve noticed some error screens when connecting to Virily. I am pretty sure (but not positive) that the problem isn’t on my computer or via my connection. That said I am unsure of what and how the path forward would be. I know that some of the issues occur on my completely vanilla computer. It is a VM, with windows 10, all updates are current, and there are no extensions loaded. I have four different browsers on that system and so far the issues when they pop up, happen on that machine as well. I suspect if I consider the issue and seek the root cause I won’t find it. In part because I don’t have access to the backend systems.

There are plenty of things to complain about. There are lots of things wrong. The reality is until we are sure what exactly is wrong it is important to keep an open mind. There are more users on Virily today than the last time there were issues like this. Nearly 10% more users today than before. That said some long-time users and contributors had left the platform. Some of the people that helped build the site don’t post anymore. Or they don’t post as often. I wonder if, in fact, things are settling down or are worse to come? As a good friend of mine used always to say “when you are up to your neck in alligators, it is hard to remember your job was to drain the swamp.”

.doc

Tech Wiz

Tech Wiz on information and the information age…

To be clear, there are some types of information floating around in the world. There is deeply personal information that most people do not often share and that is perfectly acceptable. It is your choice when it comes to personal information about what you share and what you do not share. That information isn’t however, the information that the analysts would consider part of the information age. When we talk about the someday arriving information age, we are talking about some of the other types of information. The first is that information once given that solves a specific problem. There are times when your deeply personal information can help someone else feel better, but it will seldom solve a specific problem.

Solving a problem is information that can be used, and reused over and over. It is information that provides an ongoing interaction. Today that information is what I want to focus on. Specifically, information that once shared solves a technology problem. That is the information that again the analysts believe/discuss and declare part of the information age. That is the information that is missing. Or worse, comes in a locked PDF file. There is no reusability in a locked PDF file that you don’t have the password for. How the information is provided is critical. Where and when is also important (oh yeah I know to solve that problem after something blows up and is no longer fixable, is useless).

Timing is critical, the nature of the information is critical, and finally, the delivery of the information is critical. When all three of those structures come together, we will have entered the information age. Information has a time to live. That time to live is the very simple formula. It takes the delivery components and puts into a structure. That structure is simple the value of the information – the timing of delivery and the delivery model. Then we add back in the applicability of the information. If the information solves the problem we are seeking to solve then its applicability is high. If it partially solves the problem, then applicability is lower but still higher than 0. You get the idea, the more applicable the higher the score. The later the information, the lower the score. The model of delivery then also has to be considered. (information that solve s adorable you will face frequently hat requires you to return to the source every time, is less useful than information you can download and use, over and over).

,doc

Tech Wiz on information

Information age someday…

To be clear, there are some types of information floating around in the world. There is deeply personal information that most people do not often share and that is perfectly acceptable. It is your choice when it comes to personal information about what you share and what you do not share. That information isn’t however, the information that the analysts would consider part of the information age. When we talk about the someday arriving information age, we are talking about some of the other types of information. The first is that information once given that solves a specific problem. There are times when your deeply personal information can help someone else feel better, but it will seldom solve a specific problem.

Solving a problem is information that can be used, and reused over and over. It is information that provides an ongoing interaction. Today that information is what I want to focus on. Specifically, information that once shared solves a technology problem. That is the information that again the analysts believe/discuss and declare part of the information age. That is the information that is missing. Or worse, comes in a locked PDF file. There is no reusability in a locked PDF file that you don’t have the password for. How the information is provided is critical. Where and when is also important (oh yeah I know to solve that problem after something blows up and is no longer fixable, is useless).

Timing is critical, the nature of the information is critical, and finally, the delivery of the information is critical. When all three of those structures come together, we will have entered the information age. Information has a time to live. That time to live is the very simple formula. It takes the delivery components and puts into a structure. That structure is simple the value of the information – the timing of delivery and the delivery model. Then we add back in the applicability of the information. If the information solves the problem we are seeking to solve then its applicability is high. If it partially solves the problem, then applicability is lower but still higher than 0. You get the idea, the more applicable the higher the score. The later the information, the lower the score. The model of delivery then also has to be considered. (information that solve s adorable you will face frequently hat requires you to return to the source every time, is less useful than information you can download and use, over and over).

information age dreamer

The nature of well Random

Automation is the process of taking repetitive takes and well, removing the repetitive nature of the tasks. It is the beauty, wonder and for many organizations the risk of Cloud Computing. The more you automate, the more risk you expose. The reality of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence is developed has developed will develop to augment the reality of weak automation points. The application of both AI and ML to security is an interesting study in how to make things better. Machines, in particular computers, are faster than human beings when it comes to two distinct capabilities complex pattern matching and complex pattern spotting. Computers, and therefore security systems, struggle with intentionally discontinuous patterns.

Random.

It makes no sense from a planning perspective, the word and the actions that denote a random nature. Random is hard to plan for which makes it hard to implement a solution that encompasses both expected results and the random results. A good friend of mine works as a helpdesk manager and has been on or part of a helpdesk for more than 30 years. He always says “Be aware of the loose nut behind the keyboard.” The random nature of humans is no more evident than in the number of typing errors made. The number of unexpected results forms human action staggering. There are more errors on the internet because of people that taking significant multiples of machine errors.

Random.

The nature of human beings is that we are random. Any ten people in a room will have different reactions to many things. Or 8 similar and two different, or 5 similar four different and one asleep, You get the idea, it is random. We as human beings are the random force within. Hackers, people that attack computer systems don’t have to be organized. They don’t have to follow specific rules. They attack the reality of random. Random is the enemy of planning. Random is the failing point in every system. Step back from your computer for a second. Think about what you expect in the world around you. What happens when you turn on the light switch? What happens when you turn on your computer? What happens when you type a URL into your browser? Do you ever expect different outcomes?

.Random

(random Doc and random Tech Wiz)

Three great startup companies

There are some “startups” that have become great companies in the past couple of years. Every startup has the opportunity to be great. Great represents both the extension of their original goals (and the achievement of those) but also market presence and ultimately becoming a “real company.” Much like Pinocchio, and the desire to be a real boy, sometimes becoming a real company is harder than it should be. The first company I would like to mention is the IoT creation kit known as Littlebits. In the best sense of fairness, Littlebits was originally a company designed around children, education, and creativity, but as an adult, I find the kits fascinating.

Another startup that I thought would be extremely successful was Vaaud. Sadly they closed their doors about four months ago. Their wind meters were good, but they could not compete in the overall handheld weather market. Kestler is the company I use and prefer for handheld weather. They have done a great job creating weather systems that are useful for boaters (sailing and power) as well as hikers and others. The Kestler device I have includes an altimeter, but I use it on the boat. It does make me sometimes wonder, as the only time you care about your relative height when on the water is when you are going through locks. On the glassy sea, things are flat or vary by two-four feet (waves).

The final company I wanted to talk about today was Occipital. They, the creators of the structure sensor continue to improve the offering. They have a 3d scanner you can use with your iPad or iPhone. Or an android version as well. The ability to use Structure (the scanner) to scan 3d objects is extremely useful. The value proposition for me is that it also has the ability to scan more than 3d objects. They (Occipital) released a software application called Canvas that lets you scan rooms. When you are considering moving things around (or in my case getting rid of stuff) scanning the room first and having it digitally is extremely useful. It tells me resolutely if things will fit, without me having to move and then move back!

Tech Wi

Tech Wiz on blogging…

One of the things I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is the time I spend on my two blogs. Between Virily and WordPress the act of sharing blogs has begun creeping up. What used to be a 20, 30-minute romp has become more than a 2-hour expedition. I need to reduce the time (in 67 days I will get rid of one of my blogs). I have posted more than 1500 posts on Virily. I find that amazing not that I’ve posted that many, but how many of the people have enjoyed and commented on! I love the interaction of the various online communities I’ve had a chance to be a part of. I am not a fan of the new world comment rules and interaction rules online, but that is more a personal issue than anything.

It is time to start cutting down. I am not sure yet what that means. While it is always nice to get little extra money and 12 months into this Virily pays nicely, I am not sure that I need to spend the amount of time, for the benefits received. Plus my new world schedule means I am on the road more and need to be on the road earlier in the am.

In the more than 11 years I’ve been doing a daily blog I’ve missed maybe 40 days ever. Some of the missed days were ones chosen to be missed. Some were lost days to other things. But in the more than 3500 days since I started daily blogging, I’ve produced more than 6000 blogs. (I write two every single day other than the 40 or so missed days).

I have had blogs with more than 100,000 views quite a few times.

I have had blogs with four readers as well (the least I have tracked so far).

From all of this, my take away is I love to blog. I love sharing ideas with people. I don’t like being called names and I will ignore people that call me names. I also am not a big fan of ignorance. Everything else, including being told I am wrong, I fine by me.

Tech Wiz