STEERMOUSE MAKES MY LOGITECH MOUSE BETTER

I bought a Logitech MX Vertical Wireless Mouse last year. The mouse itself remains delightful and my carpal tunnel aches have disappeared. I'm a fan. Logitech's "Options" (and newer "Options+") driver software isn't as lovely. Besides its odd issues, such as old versions being incompatible with FileVault, it's a "large" app for something that mainly maps button presses to actions. It has a jarring, non-Mac-like interface, and supports a lot of features I'll never use.

Read more

AUDREY AUDEN'S "THE VOICE IN ALL"

I read Audrey Auden's new book, "The Voice in All", the first in her new "The Artifex and the Muse" series. Auden creates a lush, complex world filled with interesting, multifaceted residents. Tantalizing glimpses of science fiction sneak into the fantasy setting, hinting at a rich universe for the rest of the series. "The Voice in All" packs a surprising amount of development and story into a quick, fun book. Auden's piqued my interest and I'm looking forward to the next installments.

Read more

EASILY DELETE YOUR TWITTER ACCOUNT THE HARD WAY

The folks at Conscious Digital have a nifty website, yourdigitalrights.org, that makes it easy to file a CCPA or GDPR request asking a website to remove all of your data. In particular, they make it easy to delete all your Twitter data. Delete your account, regain your privacy, and cause someone an administrative hassle with a single click. It’s perfect!

OF COURSE DOGS SMILE

I hang out on parts of the Internet where people often post pictures of happy animals. All too often, someone will share a photo of their smiling pooch, and a viewer who wants to sound smart will feel obligated to add a comment like "dogs can't smile." Their arguments reduce to one of several claims: Statement: They're not smiling. They're using the muscles in their face to pull the corners of their lips up.

Read more

CALIFORNIA 2022 MIDTERMS VOTING GUIDE

These are my recommendations for the November 8, 2022 midterm election in California. Propositions Direct democracy looks like a great idea on paper. In practice, we end up with awful laws like Prop 8. Because it's so hard to remove bad propositions once they're approved, it's better to vote "no" on ballot propositions you're unsure about. If it's a great idea — or even a bad one, in the case of Prop 29's predecessors — the proposers can try again in a later election.

Read more

WINDING DOWN

I knew the conversation wouldn't be easy when the veterinarian asked if this was a good time to talk. I still think of her as a puppy, even though she hasn't been one for many years. People are surprised to find that this tiny little dog is a full-grown adult. Although she's shaped like a miniature version of the real thing, it's hard to wrap your brain around something that small being anything other than a baby.

Read more

SURPRISE EERO HARDWARE END-OF-LIFE

Amazon is ending software support for 1st generation eero devices at the end of September 2022. That's fine. You can't support old hardware forever, and five years is a decent run. But it's not OK that I got less than a month's notice that it was happening, and no email or app notifications. I happened to open the eero app for unrelated reasons and saw a banner telling me my hardware will be obsolete later this month.

Read more

TRYING (AND FAILING) TO HACK THE WALL OF SHEEP

The Wall of Sheep is a popular exhibit at DEF CON. Participants run packet sniffers on an insecure Wi-Fi network and try to catch people logging into unencrypted websites and other services. If they see that happening, they post the person's username and password on a giant display. It looks something like: That's an excellent reminder to be careful when you're connected to an unknown network, and not to send your login credentials out in the open.

Read more

HOW QBASIC JUMP STARTED MY CAREER

When I was an enlisted sailor in the US Navy, I spent an awful lot of time on a deployment hacking away on our ancient laptops to write QBasic programs to automate some of our completely-not-computer-related work. For instance, I wrote a little program to format short text messages in a particular way and write them to a floppy. Then I could hand that floppy to the ship's radioman, and he'd run a program to load the messages and broadcast them over a packet radio to the MARS radio network.

Read more

SLACK WAS BROADCASTING HASHED PASSWORDS FOR 5 YEARS

I received an email from Slack on Thursday, 2022-08-04: We’re writing to let you know about a bug we recently discovered and fixed in Slack’s Shared Invite Link functionality. This feature allows users with the proper permissions to create a link that will allow anyone to join your Slack workspace; it is an alternative to inviting people one-by-one via email to become workspace members. You are receiving this email because one or more members of your workspace created and/or revoked one of these links for your workspace between April 17th, 2017 and July 17th, 2022.

Read more