Thursday, February 9, 2017

Vizio Must Go

Our good friends over at Vizio, who make approximately 1 of 5 tvs, just got fined a few million by the FTC over information collection. Enabled by default, the tv would send information on everything you watched, including IP address, to identify you, then sell the data to aggregators for a profit. In normal information theft (make no mistake, that's what this is), only non-identifiable information is sold - nothing that can tell anybody who you are. In this case, everything possible was sent up the line. The 'feature' was hidden in the tv's menu, behind some innocuous setting.  Under the terms of the settlement, Vizio admits no wrongdoing and states that permission should be obtained first, before collection, as if they thought of it first.

I have a box with a Vizio tv in it, alleged to be a Dumb TV, so this shouldn't apply. It will be interesting if I ever decide to open it. This kind of screwing should be dealt with most harshly.

  • A German Shepherd/Akita mix recently escaped the shelter to locate a woman who fed him treats. If this isn't a match made in heaven, I don't know what is.

If it's Tuesday, it's gray and rainy. Actually if it's most days ending in -day, it's gray and rainy. What does this mean? It means Business as Usual for most. For us, it means the Loud Family is now using a power saw to cut through what sounds like metal. Outside. In the rain. And they won't even have the good grace to electrocute themselves.

  • IRONY: Social media phishing attacks are up 500%. How do I know? Social media told me.

A fellow was using his drone for work purposes (no, really) when it, instead of performing a loop, performed an unauthorized software update. After the update, it did not fly so much as plummet. Plug that into your self-driving car.

  • The University of Sydney (read this with an Australian accent) has announced a $30k scholarship for men from rural areas who intend to work in rural veterinary science.  Even though 90% of the field is female, reaction was predictable: "It seems they care more about money than they do about my being a woman and getting equal opportunities."
  • I'm against these kinds of tests for any position. I want the best candidate regardless of gender, color, or planet of origin. Would you want less than the best vet working on your pet or livestock? Would you want less than the best police person protecting you?
  • What hath feminism wrought? We demand preferential treatment: it's ok to make concessions, so long as it's to women.

Did you ever have one of those days?
I know I have. Plenty of those days.
You know, those days when stuff falls?

I walked into the house and placed the mail on the table. The top envelope slid right to the floor, behind the table, in a place that was ridiculously difficult to access. While trying to access it, a ceramic key holder also left the table. This was not the way I had intended to spend my time at home and I loudly proclaimed this, at which point three more things fell behind the table.

On my way to the kitchen, I swear I heard something leap to the floor behind me.
In the kitchen, a cup launched itself into the sink, free from my assistance. At this point I snickered, realizing what was happening. I had created what scientists refer to as an Extra-Heavy Gravitic Field (EHGF). Scientists have absolutely no idea how I manage to create this but at least they have a name for it. Names make people feel so much better, even about car crashes and earthquakes.

Having realized what was going on, I was less upset and even jovial as I watched  various kitchen implements leap from the counter and items on the drying rack plummet to the ground. It looked like a comedy in the vein of The Exorcist.  After placing something in the rack, something else rocketed to the floor, I completely lost it and started assisting the Extra-Heavy Gravitic Field by means of throwing stuff at the walls and the ground. Whoever makes those silver juice packets should have used this as a commercial - no matter whether it jumps from the counter or gets launched at the wall with extreme prejudice, the package does not break.

  • Need to make a few bucks? Want to expand your notoriety and maybe get a personal nasty tweet from the president? Porn site XHamster is holding auditions for a Trump look-a-like. Do not underestimate the industry that brought you "Who's Nailin Palin?"

It's Sick Time at the lefty house.
A week ago, Wife had what looked like the sniffles, which abated in a day. Over the last few days, I had some truly odd symptoms, which led to a fever. Yes, my wife got me sick on purpose.

Fast forward a day and Wife is now sick again/still.
I think I figured this one out: there existed only one day that I was sick and she wasn't. Her Evil Plan was to get me sick, then minimize the time she'd have to play nurse by getting sick herself. Truly evil. And this is not the first time, sympathy be damned. It's not that I'm looking for anything, but a cup of soup would be nice.

Wife gets sick pretty well. It usually goes right to her throat, cutting off speech. Do you have any idea how bad it must be for someone who talks at least 20 hours per day to lose their voice? The result is a lot of people trying to 'speak' via some sort of poorly modified hand gestures combined with a pad and pen. All I can do is nod my head and hope no one required an answer. Come to think of it, this idea isn't different from when she can speak.

This becomes even more complex for the poor dog, who does not understand poorly modified hand gestures combined with a pad and pen. Not that he couldn't pick it up in a week or two, but holding your hands out wide and shaking them does not register as MOVE to him.

Meanwhile, he has taken advantage of his mom's bed rest by whining pitifully for a second breakfast, as I have no idea whether he was fed already. Again, smart dog.

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