On Steam Tech Support

So I’m a big fan of tech support in general. Lots of really good people work this frustrating job, and I’m used to the fact that they’re going to do things like assume I’m an idiot and ask if I’ve turned the device off then on again, because a) they have to, and b) most people ARE idiots. or functionally close enough with technology, anyways.

But Steam’s tech support no longer gets the benefit of the doubt on this issue any more.

Before I go any further, you should know the history of my tech support woes with Valve, and why it was a definite last resort this most recent time. Continue reading “On Steam Tech Support”

An intellectual argument.

I have a failing.

If I like a video enough, especially if it’s a video about science or technology, I can’t help but read a few of the peanut gallery responses to the video.

That last video I posted up… you know, the one from TED? yeah, I read some responses.

Like this one.

Mar 16 2009: If you look at the progression of the human race in the last 100 years, with every major advancement in technology, it seems to be accompanied with even greater stories of crime, paedophilia, drug misuse, man-made disasters, and climate change. I’m not saying that technology is bad — far from it — but major advancements need to be watched carefully because the misuse of power can wreck people’s lives, even disrupt entire nations!

If you could biologically enhance yourself or reconfigure your genome, imagine how people might misuse such power? It is a sad fact that most people are naturally selfish, motivated by their own lusts.

Since I disagree wholeheartedly with his statement,  for obvious and logical reasons, I *sigh* created an account and posted up a reply.

And since the reply was lengthy, and I sweated a little over my phraseology, I figured I’d share it wit’ youse guys, since I’m basically lazy/morally bankrupt. ^^

My response:

“Less than 5 minutes ago:

I’d like to see your statistics for those statements about crime. From what I can remember of my history and sociology classes, crime rates are (and have been for the last hundred years or so) on a comparative downswing, with an illusory upswing as crime detection technology improves. For example, while pedophilia was certainly just as rampant in Victorian England as today, there were comparatively few trials, and very little public acknowledgment that such things were even possible.
In other words, the reason we see so much more crime is because we catch it much more effectively now than a hundred years ago.
Of course I could be wrong. However, whether or not crime is on an upswing, it’s extremely unlikely technology has anything to do with it.
As any economics student can tell you, drawing a causal link between two isolated data sets borders on hubris if done without strong outside evidence.”

Juan Enriquez is my new science god

He’s funny, he’s intelligent, and he’s making a point to people smarter than you or I in a way that you and I can understand – while still making a point that the smart guys in that room hadn’t heard before. give it a listen… It’s inspiring and funny… which is awesome. This is the site these talks are hosted on. http://www.ted.com/

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Juan Enriquez Ted Talk“, posted with vodpod

The best way to wake up… EVER.

I found this on www.geekologie.com . . . but the originating post is here, on a site called mathlete.com

It’s called the Wake n’ Bacon. It’s an alarm clock.

It’s an alarm clock that wakes you up not with noise, or light, or vibration… Nuh uh.

This thing wakes you up to the smell of cooking bacon.

This thing is amazing. This is better than an alarm clock that wakes you up with smecks; After all, who’s interested in smecks when they gotta pee?

Uhhh… On second thought, you know what, don’t answer that.

Anyway, as long as it’s food safe (because I worry that slow cooking meat might not kill enough bacteria to be safe with bacon, but I don’t know what internal temp this thing gets the bacon to) … and as long as I can get a freaking mini-fridge, this is ON!

P.S. – And if you think that’s cool, look at what else they have in store: (this is a quote from mathlete)

“Waking up by force is physically and spiritually jarring, but we must do it nearly all the time. By interview and direct observation, we found a number of ways in which common alarm clocks could be improved. Many are simple conveniences, but the most essential finding was that most people eventually become “immune” to their alarms. To that end, we proposed a plugin architecture where the alarm triggers any number of seperate modules, similar to that of an electric timer with a snooze button.

Proposed add-on modules:

  • Heat/Cooling unit
  • Bed Vibrator
  • Bright Lamp
  • Baking unit
  • Bass Generator
  • Air Cannon

In addition, we propose several improvements to the clock unit itself:

  • Calendar Aware: knows not to go off on weekends, holidays
  • Presence Aware: only active when there is enough pressure on the bed to indicate presence of a person
  • Option to have waking module “dimmed up”: whether a lamp or sound or vibration is used as a waking agent, the option to have this sensation dimmed up from zero so user is eased into waking

In the end, we just built the bacon-cooking part because we received such a strong response from people.”

Guides Fo’ Shizzle

Generally speaking, guides on how to use something, especially something on the internet, and for which one has to pay, make me think about spam,  malware, phishing, and the guide, ‘How To Kill A Haxxor In Ten Minutes Or Less Without Getting Caught!’

– so imagine my surprise when I stumble (god, how I love thee stumble.com) upon fifteen (free) guides from a manufacturer of (pay for) guides to everything on/in the internet. (o.O)

No registration required, no downloads required (although you can download it in pdf if you want) . . . This shouldn’t exist! But I am so glad it does.

The free guides range from iPhone to BitTorrent, and include things like the audiophile’s guide to the internet. I can only speak to the accuracy and (informative-ness?) of the audiophile’s guide to the internet and the movie lover’s guide to the internet, because those are what I opened. They’re good. entertaining, informative, and with a shit ton of good links to things you should know about if you like (respectively) movies or music.

All in all, I’m amazed. Check it out, and see if there’s anything you might like to know more on.