Friday, August 10, 2012

A Cautionary Tale

The tech world has been a-buzz this week because of the hacking of tech journalist Mat Honan.  Ironically, this hack may have done more for Internet security than anything in recent memory!  And while there are particular lessons to be learned from this for Apple users, the entire incident uncovers in a big way,  the new dangers of the cloud-based Internet world in which we now live.  Anyone using a cloud-based service (Gmail, iCloud, Amazon, etc, etc) is at risk no matter what operating system you use.  I've also been concerned for awhile now about my increasing dependence on Google services and have been thinking about ways to limit my exposure.  And "thinking" is about as far as it has gone.  But the havoc that was created in Honan's digital world has spurred me to action.

Among the casualties of the hack was the loss of all the photos of his young daughter's life as well as photos of now deceased relatives.

The implications for family historians are obvious.  Below you will find a link to the original story of the Honan hack as well as some articles about how to prevent the same thing from happening to you.  Yes the extra security measures are an inconvenience but so is locking the deadbolt on your front door or entering a code in a home security system.  Some "inconveniences" are worth it in our world.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Tech Tip from the Surface of the Sun

Women frying eggs on cement wall near U.S. Capitol. Prints & Photographs Division, Library of Congress.

Remember when you park your car, to take your electronic devices out with you.  Otherwise when you return to your parked oven car and try to use the aforementioned device  you will get a scary message along the lines of (to paraphrase)  “you idiot…this device is now too hot to use and you may have just killed it”.  Then you will be forced to drive the next ten miles with one hand on the wheel and one hand holding your device on the air conditioning vent all the while praying that the tech gods will forgive your sins.  Not that I personally would have ever done this.  In Oklahoma.  In August.  In a record setting heat wave.
And by the way, it’s going to be 113 here today.  Death Valley called.  They want their summer back.
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