Digital natives are among us, they use the tablet even before learning to read and grow up in a world where digital technologies are an integral part of their life. Being unable to read hence to think as well, the aforementioned digital natives are unaware of the fact that they actually are the ones being used by uselessly expensive disposable gadgets, and that their role in the modern technology world mainly is to behave like idiots and waste money when there is a new trendy toy to purchase whatever it takes.
Public cloud computing services are among the most unreliable technology products out there, and this is a fact that Internet corporations never cease to confirm. As a matter of fact, the only true guarantees that the aforementioned corporations can concretely comply with are the ones about security risks for virtual computing instances, breaches in users’ sensible and personal data, unauthorized password access, the unavailability of communication services vital for a country’s authorities. Insecurity is the only “always-on” thing, in the wonderful world of cloud, and promises about “unlimited” resources are lies so awful that Pinocchio would be disgusted.
Four months have passed, maybe it’s time to update the blog once more. And maybe it’s fine to resume some series neglected for too long like the one about the market of computer Web browsers. The last post on the topic dates back to 2009, and in just six years the situation changed so radically to seem like belonging to another age. And as a matter of fact we are in a completely different age, with many unknowns and a factual observation which is worth being highlighted above anything else: Firefox is a browser unavoidably doomed to oblivion, and it’s all Mozilla’s fault.
Among the many lies cloud computing providers tell users and companies, the one about reliability and full-time availability is always the first to be proven wrong by facts. Cloud platforms go off-line almost regularly, and it matters little that the infrastructure is needed to manage applications and data in real time or that the affected provider is a hi-tech giant. Sooner or later all the remote servers vanish in a sorrowful cloud, and the user is left with his frustration for having entrusted his own business or digital life to someone who is only interested in turning them into profits.
Cloud computing is a scam, an endless progression of lies, technically impossible to honor pledges and outages that routinely shut down services the marketing sells as always-on and always available for users and companies’ needs. And yet the Internet herds are still drinking the toxic water of the cloud, and the corporations never get tired of making more and more amazing promises about the mythical features of remote-controlled systems.
Yeah, it’s 2015 and I am still here talking about feed readers, the ideal service to replace the never too much bemoaned Google Reader and about the unreliability of big corporations when it’s a matter of trusting them with something so important, so intimate like your personal slice of Web you browse every day, many times a day, one post at a time. This is an update post about my personal “quest” to hunt the perfect feed reader, a quest that already ended months ago with the permanent adoption of Inoreader.
The month of March 2014 marks the (possibly) definitive stop for LLOOGG, a service for real-time Web traffic analysis that was appreciated quite a lot by Sir Arthur for its simplicity and for giving an extremely clear picture of the site’s visitors activity. The service has been closed, the developers say, the lloogg.com domain name is on sale and the source code for the server-side application has been released on GitHub for everyone to download and review.
The companies involved in that downright organized fraud called cloud computing have always advertised the idea that data, “apps” and services entirely relying on an Internet connection are destined to last indefinitely. It’s the first lie and the original sin of cloud computing, something that simply isn’t true and that every month, every week and every day must face a reality going in the opposite way: the “cloud” servers are dying over and over again like flies bringing down with them data, apps and services of their naive users.
Cloud computing is a digital hell that burns data, security, reliability and privacy for users and companies, a technology cancer that within the short turn of a summer brought new evidence of the fact that the worst, for the fools willing to completely tie themselves to the feudal power system of the new digital Lords, is yet to come. It’s therefore important to keep a constant track of the incidents, the unfulfilled promises, the countless privacy violations and the pure and simple lies the unscrupulous corporations persistently try to sell as the future of everything. The future, on-line, has an expiration date and is intermittent.
USAbox.com is one of those services which offer a way to have a physical address in the United States, an address that can be used to receive mail or other kinds of shipments and it’s particularly useful to shop on-line from e-commerce sites or sellers that don’t ship outside USA. However, according to my personal experience, USAbox.com is anything but a web site worthy of being recommended to anyone.
The false promises of cloud computing killed Google Reader and I, like many million users before, had to search for a worthy alternative to the former most popular feed reader in the world. The truth is that finding such alternative isn’t easy, and as for me the search is still going on now almost a month after the Reader service official stop. This nth betrayal by Google still burns, yet the RSS/Atom readers market is luckily more alive than ever just like the hope to dismiss even the memory of the only Google product - web search apart - I have ever cared of.
After more than four years since the post with which this blog tried to highlight the dark side of that hollow and meaningless thing hidden behind the “cloud computing” moniker, I think it’s now time to go back on the topic with an annotated list of the most recent and remarkable horrors fallen down from the sky of Internet servers. The “mainframe 3.0″ class services promise a lot, keep very little and don’t give any guarantee on anything. Or to say it with the Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, selling one’s own rights of ownership on software, data and products is the first stone of the road that leads to digital hell.
It always happens like this: technology evolves, newer computer tools become more and more widespread and I am forced to change idea or conform my opinions to the present time rather than keeping them tied down to the past. I hated (Windows) Vista, now I use Vista (waiting to upgrade to Win7), I hated Twitter… And I still hate Twitter, in very truth, but I can’t help acknowledging its usefulness beyond the foolish use made by dickheads thinking with their smartphone instead of their brain.
I am used to bring along my “historical” Internet accounts even if they are actually useless, because for me one of the most important things is “retrocompatibility” and support of all the e-mail addresses opened in the past in the unlikely case someone would decide to contact me there. So I have learned with much disappointment the news about the change of Interfree’s free services into professional paid products, a transition that will take place from today and that will have the practical effect of disabling the mailbox and the web space offered at no cost to users thus far.
I think that finding a visual flaw in an extremely popular service like Google Maps doesn’t happen frequently, but detecting something weird in a photographic view a few meters away from where you live must be even more rare. And yet it’s exactly what happened to me a few months ago, and the problem is still there today: the view of a street hereabout is simply bugged, with a giant purple block hiding the sight at one of the roadway sides - all along the street.
This clearly is a shock period for me, because after the bad, bad event of the dead hard disk I also have to deal with the leaving (already of public domain since) of De Andreis brothers from the lead of Punto Informatico, that is the news site I daily write some nonsense for and what’s more being paid for the service The site has changed ownership since October 2008 going from De Andreis Editore to Edizioni Master, but at least for a while things have been the same as usual - ie every day there was a mail from Paolo (De Andreis) to wait for me with the indication of things to do inside.
The Fool is an Italian start-up founded by Matteo Flora, a security consultant known for having helped Silvio Berlusconi’s Mediaset to put together the data required to bring a 500 million euros lawsuit against Google and YouTube in July 2008. On the blog of FoolDNS, the main product offered by The Fool, the company has recently explained the reasons why Google Safe-Browsing is part of the service blacklist hence it is blocked for users and companies which use it.
Good things need time, I wrote in July 2008. For the upgrade of my Firefox installation to the last version available it took more than a year, hence instead of release 3.0 now I have a shiny Firefox 3.5.2 on the screen, no remorse for the switch, some little lack of intimacy with the minimal behavioural differences of the browser UI and so much relief for the end of an installation, test and refining operation that stole me an entire weekend and this past Monday morning.
During the first week of July, the Interplanetary Internet conceived by Vint Cerf (formerly co-creator of the TCP/IP protocol at the foundations of “terrestrial” Internet) and by NASA engineers earned what should be its first permanent node in the outer space. During the second of a long series of tests to verify the reliability of the Delay-Tolerant Networking (also known as Disruption-Tolerant Networking) protocol, the software needed for its functioning was transferred aboard the International Space Station orbiting at 350 kilometers above the Earth.
Maybe the bolt from the blue of the Chrome launch didn’t brought an awful market share figure to the newcomer, but the convulsions and the undoubted evolutive acceleration set off by the release of the made-in-Google browser are reverberating with increasing strength on the new war to control the access port to the worldwide network. Currently numbers are still on Mozilla’s and its red panda side, but in future things will become more complicated when Google will have played one of its best cards to turn Chrome from an oddity for few into a conquering force for the mainstream market.