Posts Tagged ‘annoying’

Many Happy Returns Webby!

Posted: May 10, 2014 in bankers, Business, Computers, Current Events
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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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World-Wide-Web

The World Wide Web, created by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, turned 25 years old this year, 2014.

There has never been anything like it before, certainly not as regards the impact it has made on society and the way we live our lives. Many of those changes are good, many are not so good and a few are downright annoying.

Here’s my take on some of them.

To concentrate on the good parts first, the one thing the www has done, for those who can use it effectively, is to give access to information that was previously only available to the elite few who managed to claw their way into the lofty heights of academia, or who worked in places where information was readily available. Now the same information is accessible at the touch of a button to anyone and everyone with a smart phone, tablet or computer.

Another benefit, in my view anyway, is that is has sent a massive wake-up call to telephone providers world wide, many of whom were fast asleep, content to rake in healthy profits from antiquated systems. No longer do we have to settle for slow and temperamental data transfer lines. Nowadays, particularly in the last few years, people are demanding systems that can cope with download streams in the gigabyte range. If you are old enough to remember the first modems you will know you wasted too much of your life trying to download at 12Kb/sec., sometimes less.

Freedom is also a welcome by-product of the World Wide Web.

The freedom to work in any country in the world, from virtually any country in the world is one big plus – it is for me anyhow. Another one I particularly like is the freedom to watch TV programs that I like, when I like, no longer tied to the schedules of some brainless bean-counter working for a broadcasting company. And the freedom to have your say on things as and when the mood takes you – they call that blogging don’t you know! – is also a great advantage to the ordinary person.

www words

As is the freedom to disseminate information across the globe instantly, as Mr Snowden ably demonstrated, although I would hazard a guess that the powers that be would not agree with me on that one.

Indeed, this is the one aspect of the www that really bothers big brother.

China for example is one country where access is controlled by the state. Coincidentally this year also marks the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, you’ll find articles about that if you do a search, but probably not in China. They get away with it because they are not a democracy and do not pretend to be one.

In other countries, like the good old Land Of The (Not So) Free (Anymore)), the powers still like to con their people into believing that they are living in a democratic nation and that the people have the power to vote for this or that. But think for a moment, when was the last time you got to vote on whether to start a war, or whether to give $billions of your money to the greedy banksters to pay themselves huge bonuses and gamble away the rest?

It is because they need to keep the pretence of democracy going, that they do not yet have the confidence to start overtly censoring the internet. But they do all they can to snoop on what people are reading, or writing, or looking at.

This is where the freedom the www and associated technology provides can also be a negative, when it is used by governments to surveil us and record every piece of data they can. If they were doing this selectively and targeting terrorists and criminals no one would be too worried. But they are doing it to all of us, guilty and innocent alike.

big brother is watching

They are also doing everything they can think of to impose taxes on internet commerce – of course they have to coz they’re stoney broke.

The www has revolutionized business practices and created all sorts of new commerce opportunities, Amazon perhaps being the best example of a company that has gone from nothing to a multi-billion dollar business in just a few years.

Communication and social interaction are also areas where the www has liberated the ordinary person – first with email and more recently with social media. In the near future expect to see social media expanding to become much more than individual platforms such as Facebook or Twitter. We are already seeing many new applications that are allowing people to communicate more widely, more easily and more often.

social media

Another negative is that the World Wide Web has unwittingly facilitated the proliferation of pornography and violence, and is teaching a generation of morons all the wrong things. Things that will ensure they become a burden on society, not an asset.

And it has also opened a whole new environment in which criminals can operate. Millions of dollars are being stolen every day through scams, confidence tricks and outright theft.

You could say (and I frequently do) that people dumb enough to fall for these scams deserve all they get, or all they lose, is perhaps a better way of putting it. You know, the idiots who believe they really have won a lottery they didn’t buy a ticket for, or who think that Dr Umbungo Watanga from Nigeria is being truthful when he tells them that someone they never heard of has left them $25 million and all they need to do is send all their personal details and a few thousand dollars to unlock the fortune that awaits them. There really is one born every minute it seems!

All that said, and twenty-five years on, the www is still in its infancy. We have come a long way in the past 25 years, but we have really only scratched the surface as regards what the web has the potential to do to further improve our daily lives.

Where the vision to develop the www will come from in anyone’s guess. The only thing we know for sure is that the initiative won’t come from governments or their bureaucratic servants, simply because the people we elect to those positions do not have the required intelligence.

So its up to you. If you have any great ideas you want to share, send me an email.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the man who created the World Wide Web.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Today I’m talking techo, well sort of.

As time moves on – and it’s moving on far too fast – more and more things tend to irritate me.

The stupidity and bureaucracy we have to endure is the thing that inspired this blog in the first place and that remains a huge thorn in my side. I have made many comments on that subject and given the opportunity will no doubt make many more.

But another thing that pisses me off more and more is almost the opposite of stupidity – it is people trying to be too damn smart.

Nowhere is this more noticeable than in the technology that we use today.

Now, I’m not a technophobe by any stretch of the imagination. I love my computers and the advent of the internet was one of the greatest things ever, as far as I was concerned. Indeed I have blogged in the past about my long love affair with computers  click here to read it.

Maybe it’s because of that long love affair, because I have been involved with computers for so many years, that what is happening now irritates me so much.

What I’m talking about is the fact that today’s personal computers and tablets and telephones and all the other periphery of techo gadgets try to do far too much for their owners. Everyone who has one of these machines is apparently a moron, or at least that’s how the manufacturers seem to treat us.

In the good old days you actually had to work at making your computer do things. Your telephone in those days made telephone calls and that was about it. And tablets were the things the doctor prescribed when you were feeling poorly.

To cut what could well turn into a very long list of current irritations into a manageable size, let me concentrate on just a few of the most horrible things that we now have to face.

In fact, rather than go on and on I’ll split this post over a few days.

Today it’s telephones.

Like I just said, I remember the days when phones were used to make phone calls – seemed logical enough to us at the time. Now they do all sorts of things. You can still phone people when you figure out how, but now you can also text, surf the internet, send and receive video messages and calls, play games, buy stuff – in fact almost everything you can do on your computer you can now do on a smart phone. And most of them have reasonable quality cameras too.

For a while those who could afford a cell phone were lumbered with a thing the size of a brick and it weighed almost as much too!

You can see one of those in the photo below (far left!). You can still get them, or rather a modern version if you want to draw a bit of attention to yourself – and there are always people who do.

evolution-phone

As the years went on the phones kept getting smaller and smaller. That was good for a while. They became light and pocket sized. But miniaturization became the trend, and cell phones got really really really small to the extent that unless you had the fingers of a five year old child instead of chubby man paws it was a struggle to find the right numbers to make a call and a nightmare to send a text.

Then, mainly because of the advance of wifi and 3G and 4G and so forth, cell phones started to get bigger again to the extent that they are nearly back to the size of that brick again, albeit a lot thinner and lighter. Glasses are the next step, with a heads up view just like on the helmet visors of those jet fighters you see in the movies. And sometime in the not too distant future you will just need a silicone chip embedded at the back of your ear-hole. Not sure I’ll go for that last one though.

That’s a potted history of the cell phone, but now for the really irritating part.

When texting really took off and became the most popular form of communication when using a cell phone, someone – they won’t tell me his name probably for his own safety – decided that we needed help writing a text. Not what I call a “speel chekkar” that is available on your computer – which would have been acceptable – but a much more sinister and annoying invention.

Guessed what it is yet?

Yes, it’s “auto-correct” or as it likes to call itself “anal cortex”.

I hate this thing with a passion. I disconnect it on every device I can because it doesn’t work!

Auto-correct has not the slightest idea what you are trying to say. It is unnecessary, frustrating, irritating and useless.

It has only one saving grace that I have found.

Sometimes it’s funny.

If you are not likely to be offended by strong language, have a look at some of the examples below and you’ll see exactly what I mean.

Enjoy.

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autocorrect001.

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autocorrect002.

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autocorrect003.

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autocorrect004.

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autocorrect005.

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autocorrect006.

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autocorrect007.

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autocorrect008.

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autocorrect009.

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autocorrect010.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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George Carlin Never underestimate

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I read a sign recently that said “Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.”

I knew exactly what it meant.

I’ve said it before on this blog – stupid people are dangerous. Sure they are amusing some of the time, and annoying all of the time, but they are also dangerous a lot of the time too.

Whether it be the stupid idiot who gets drunk and thinks it makes him a better driver, or someone in a company who has been promoted well beyond his or her level of ability just because the number of years of service he or she has accrued, or one of those despicable ‘jobs-worth’ morons you inevitably find in bureaucratic government non-jobs, their stupidity poses a danger to the rest of us.

stupid-people

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If you were a real optimist you might be forgiven for hoping that where you put two stupid people together there would be a chance that the stupidity would halve, but in fact quite the reverse is true, it doubles – and then some!  

And where stupid people accumulate in even larger groups the danger they pose is even greater.

I have witnessed mob violence and believe me it’s a scary thing, always dangerous and often lethal. That’s bad enough.

But what if the large groups of stupid people are given the power to dictate to the rest of us?

That’s an even scarier prospect because it isn’t just spontaneous and fleeting, it is planned and long term.

It’s something that you would think the rest of us would be smart enough not to let happen. Yet that’s exactly what we have allowed to happen.

In the modern world, whether it be the western democracies or the eastern dictatorships, for one reason or another smart people have abdicated their responsibility to ensure that we are governed sensibly and have instead allowed a bunch of morons to take charge.

A lot of the time the idiots get away with it without anyone noticing much. The smart people get on with their lives and quietly accept the interference of the stupid.

But recently the idiots have been steadily encroaching on our private lives, into things that are clearly none of their business and things that pose no danger to society at large or to any individual within it.

The idiots want power. They don’t know what to do with it when they get it. But they want it, and more and more of it.

My own theory is that at heart, although they try to appear superior, the idiots know they are idiots and actually feel inferior to normal people. Thus their mania to have control over those they know are better than they are.

never argue with stupid people. 

We know that when they get control they try to dumb down society to their level. The most talented individuals are frowned upon and made to develop at the same speed as the dumbest.

We’ve been through the NSA fiasco when they were outed by a former employee. We know they look at our emails, listen to our telephone conversations, probably even snoop in our mail or scrutinize our blogs (gosh!) and that they have built a humungous new data storage center to keep information on everyone.

We know they start wars and cause the needless deaths of many people sometimes for no other good reason than to distract from the obvious shortcomings at home.

And we are currently in the midst of one of the most idiotic standoffs in Washington with Obama, the Senate and the House of Representatives seeing who can balance on one leg the longest while the country becomes the laughing stock of the rest of the world.

Yes folks, never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups to destroy society and drag the rest of us down along with them.

no stupid people beyond this point

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Like it says in the title, nothing is free these days.

Except for puns that is.

You just can’t put a price on that level of enjoyment!

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Guy #1:  “I’m stuck with one word on this crossword,

the clue is a 10 letter word, similar to being silly”

Guy #2:  “Oh, that’s ridiculous”

Guy #1:  “I know, I’ve been stuck on it for hours”.

pun crossword_puzzle

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I’ve put in so many shifts where I work recently

that they’ve decided to fire me.

Making keyboards isn’t as easy as it looks.

pun shift_key

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My sister had a baby boy and

she’s gonna name him Mark, but with a “C”.

Who ever heard of someone called “Cark”?

pun cartoon_baby

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The manager of the toy shop I work at phoned me and said:

“Steve, our stock records show that we’re missing a space hopper.

I need you to find it for me.”

I said, “Don’t worry boss, I’m on it.”

pun space-hopper

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Google Chrome

All you’ll get is a description of a metal.

pun google-chrome-metal-text-effect

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The head teacher at my school called me in to his office today.

He said, “I’ve just had a rock thrown through my window, are you responsible?”

I replied, “No, I’m irresponsible. That’s why I threw it.”

pun Boy_Broken_Window

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Woke up this morning and my joints were really stiff.

I’ve only got myself to blame: I rolled them far too thick.

pun joints

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For my next trick, I will eat a percussion instrument in a bap.

Drum roll, please.

pun drum roll

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I bought a tree at the garden center that was far too big to get in the car,

so we had to cut the top off.

I didn’t really mind though,

I’ve always wanted a convertible.

pun car tree

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My girlfriend said it would be nice if I could maintain an erection.

So I’ve volunteered to clean bird crap off the Statue of Liberty.

pun statue of liberty

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I saw a busker with no arms today singing so badly

I offered him five bucks to stop.

But that was just another note he couldn’t hold.

pun five_dollar_bill

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I do not have an OCD over tidiness.

I just wanted to clear that up.

pun ocd

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My Korean friend was going to cook his wife a surprise birthday dinner.

But someone let the cat out of the bag.

pun cat out of the bag

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I’m planning a camping holiday but, I have to say,

I’m far from impressed with my travel insurance.

It turns out if someone steals my tent in the night,

I’ll no longer be covered.

pun stolen Tent

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What are long, hard and delicious?

Adjectives.

pun adjectives

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I find nothing is quite so annoying as having someone

carry on talking while you’re trying to interrupt.

pun interrupt

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Apparently 80% of people who have cosmetic surgery

are disappointed by the results.

Which is a bit odd,

because most of them look pleasantly surprised.

pun facelift

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I was waiting in line for a club last night

and the guy at the door was checking IDs.

He was taking ages.

pun standing in line

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Is anyone else tired,

or is it just M.E.?

pun myalgic encephalomyelitis

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My friend’s new girlfriend has been around the block a few times…

Like most women, she’s crap at parking.

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