TAG: Opinion

Three Books I Enjoyed in 2018

The coming end of this year usually brings ponderings of the past and predictions for an unknown future; but screw that. Books are where it’s at. I love to read. As a fellow reader, you’re probably looking for books to add to the “want to read” bookshelf. I’m here to recommend three more that you should check out. These aren’t in any particular order or limited to being published this year, they’re just books I’ve read and loved.

I Struggle With How Badly Technology People are Represented Online

Head in Hands

What has this all come to? Regularly, I read articles and blog posts, but I also see a good deal from people who represent my industry, namely the Computer Technical Service or MSP folks. What I’ve encountered, however, has me incredibly troubled. A number of folks online are purporting to represent us, when in fact they aren’t doing it well at all. This hit the tipping point when two of these people came together to make an insanely bad webcast, that I had to share it with you.

And naturally, I don’t see every webcast, hear every podcast or know about all those who are out publicly talking about the industry. One of the biggest truisms is that if you devote your time to work, you can’t make and edit three massively long videos, podcasts or blogs a week. So, many of these super prolific people are probably not actually out there in the industry doing what I’m doing.

Your ISP Is Probably Stupid

ISP InterconnectIf you follow some of the net neutrality news, you probably know Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are dumb. If you don’t, this is a great time to help you understand how truly idiotic ISP’s are. I came across a war of words between Netflix’s Reed Hasting calling for net neutrality, and AT&T’s Jim Cicconi, calling for people to pay twice. While the idea Reed Hasting puts forth is reasonable, Jim Cicconi’s is all shades of stupid.

No, Bloggers Aren’t Really Bored

Only Boring People Get Bored by Richard ErikssonThe cranky master is at it again. Recently, Dave Winer asked Why are people bored with blogging?. I respect his ideas, but more often than not, I tend to tune out his brand of negativity. His recent small post had me thinking about whether bloggers are really be bored. With the rise of tools catering to ever shorter attention spans, it would appear more like bloggers are lured by new and shiny tools. These tools are prettier and faster to use, so, naturally bloggers are taking advantage of them (over traditional long-form writing). But, are bloggers bored?

How NOT to approach a blogger

A few years ago, I wrote a blog post about what seemed like a pyramid scheme. This post was based on a fellow named Kash Shahzada, who approached me about working with him. With that, I took some time to look into what his company was, and more about the individual that was publicly available on the Internet. Since that encounter, I’ve heard nothing until yesterday, when I received an email from someone who appeared to be Kash.

Stop Worrying, and Learn to Love Free WiFi

WiFi logoInspired by David Precht’s great article on Medium about the ethics of using coffee shops, I really wanted to look at this idea of using free Wifi in these sorts of establishments.  As coffee lover, blogger, and a rather rabid Internet user, I’m likely the category these companies target. With more and more of us working for ourselves from home, we’re increasingly plunking our collective butts down in the local Starbucks, ordering a drink and connecting. By my count, the numbers coffee shop and fast food chains that offer free Wifi in Canada are increasing rapidly. In fact, I am sitting in a coffee shop as I write this.

Wrong, Right, Experts and Trolls

RightWrong-4Most people consider me an expert. That’s a good thing, since I run and operate CWL Inc. – an IT consulting firm in Toronto. The daily grind (for me) consists of working with various types of technologies and making them work for various clients. While the mission is often simple, the process and eventual outcome may not be. Along the way, I’m approached by many who are thankful for the work, but there are the few that seem to see this process differently. While speaking to one such person, I thought of what it meant to offer help to anyone, what makes me think I can do it – and where trolls fit into this process.

Life Shouldn’t Be Fair, It Should Be Agreeable

“Life isn’t fair” bemoaned a friend as they took a breath and continued; “Life should be fair”. This was a moment when my conservation of speech and ideas had reached its breaking point. I had to say something. My response started with the simple statement that “Life shouldn’t be far, it should be agreeable”. I won’t subject you to the long form of my response, but I wanted to touch on this idea we have about “fair” versus “agreeable” (or “agreement” or “acceptance” if you’re so inclined).

The essence of this idea is what’s fair verses what’s agreeable? Fair can defined as “free from bias, dishonesty, or injustice”, whereas agreeable is defined as simply something that is “acceptable”. I would want to say more in life should be acceptable, not simply lacking in stuff we dislike.

Windows 8’s Success Depends On One Simple Thing

Windows 8 LogoWe’re all a part of unprecedented times. The computing choices around us are are almost as varied as our interests for consuming and creating information. One new choice on the horizon will be Windows 8, and the certain upheaval it represents. Much has been made of this new version of Windows (available October 26), and how many will not “get it” and fewer still will shell out cash to purchase the product that almost no one likes. I think this is a sound theory since Windows 8 is almost universally being panned. Even the expected positive review from Walt Mossberg is, well, not so much.

The Future Of Email Is NOT Twitter

Twitter Fail WhaleI just stumbled on this blog post (not using StumbleUpon, mind you) where the author posits that the future of email is Twitter. Well, a longer version of Twitter not limited to 140 characters. He or She of Virtual Pants goes on to say that no one wants to remember a fill email address and that an @username is much easier to remember. Since that blog doesn’t seem to offer a place to comment, I’ll do that here, thank you very much.