Wednesday May 31, 2023

WTF Friday – Google Blocks Edge, Scared Straight, & Transhumanism?

Hello humans (and spambots). I know, I know…it’s been a while. Storm season was crazy here in Oklahoma. Had a lot going on in general. So…heeeyyy! To make it up to you, I’ve put together a new WTF Friday and I promise I’ll try to get my shit together soon. I did update Digital Workflow just the other day. If you haven’t, you should check it out and subscribe. Oh, and my pithy commentary over on Modern Essayist.

Anyway, let’s get started, mmmkay?

Google Blocks Edge Users From YouTube

Recently, tech news broke that Google blocks Microsoft Edge from accessing the new and improved (according to Google – don’t shoot the fucking messenger) YouTube. Of course, Google claims it was an accident, but let’s face it…if you’re using Microsoft Edge, Google is really doing you a favor by forcing you away from it if you want to use YouTube.

Scared Straight

Alright, so there’s a new evolutionary theory that I find absolutely delightful. It is thought that a massive supernova explosion caused humans to walk upright. I mean, I’ve heard worse theories. Let’s face it – we’ve all been startled so hard we sat up a little straighter. It’s not difficult for me to believe that there was a “HOLY SHIT! That was so loud I stood straight up for the first time…ever!” moment.

Transhumanism? Why?

Recently, Wired published a story about Inspector Gadget and what that show could teach us all about transhumanism. Look, I am very much a “you do what you wanna do as long as you’re not a dick about it.” And being a dick is highly subjective. Notice I didn’t say do what you want as long as you don’t HURT anyone…because inevitably some holier-than-thou individual who doesn’t agree with you will claim that your actions somehow hurt them although they don’t. So. Yeah. Ultimately, you do you…

But….since we’re all entitled to an opinion. I dunno. Transhumanism seems like a bad idea (with the exception of replacing missing limbs). But, you know, I saw that one episode of Futurama where Hermes started upgrading various parts of himself. He ended up sitting on Zoidberg’s lap. “Wanna sit on my lap and talk about the first that pops up?” Really, why NOT Zoidberg?

Alexa, Forget What I Said

I have a love/hate relationship with smart technology. Never ever ever will I actively place a voice assistant (stand-alone) into my home. I already know that smartphones listen to us. I know that cookies are used online to generate advertising content. Like, I remember when that really became the next best thing in online marketing. Because I am old. “Robin, you’re not old!” I used the Dewey Decimal System in the library, okay? The cost to access the Internet when I was in high school was prohibitive for most of us. I had a dot matrix printer. And an Atari.

Anyway, unless you live in a cave (and congratulations to your wireless carrier for ensuring you have coverage), you’ll remember all the Alexa issues involving the AI sending, without permission, emailed versions of conversations to others. Yikes. (And if you don’t think that the government isn’t or won’t eventually access this technology, you’re wrong…)

Recently, Alexa received a new update that allows users to tell Alexa to forget what they just said. Cool story, bro…but I’d have to say, “Alexa forget I said that,” after every fucking sentence for any sort of peace of mind. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

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