TECHNOLOGY: How not to implement a Customer facing system

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

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Important news about American Express Gift Cards

Dear Ferdinand Reinke,

A new American Express Gift Card site is coming soon! By June 26, 2018, please log in to your Account to access your saved information and past Gift Card orders. When the new Gift Card site launches, your American Express login credentials will not work, so you will need to create a new login. This new login will not be tied to your American Express Credit or Charge Account.Please log in now to save important account information you may need, such as order history, receipts, saved payment methods or shipping addresses.

Coming soon!
The new site will include changes such as:New Card designs
Option to add a customized message to all Cards
Ability to load any amount between $25-$3,000 on all Cards
Easy reorder
Variable Purchase Fee pricing from $3.95-$6.95

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I am surprised, as an ex-Amex employee, that this is such a  Customer hostile implementation.


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CHROMEBOOK: “Planned Obsolescence” or “End Of Life”

Friday, June 8, 2018

One of my beloved Chromebooks — ET101 Samsung — updated the Chrome OS and popped up an “End Of Life” message.


It’s EOL when it dies.

Is this part of Google’s attempt to follow in Apple’s “planned obsolesce” “architecture”?

Personally, if the Chromebook is supposed to be the “toaster” appliance of the computer age, then it should old go “end of life” when it goes to chromebook heaven.  I have toasters that lasted until the lady of the house decided the exterior could no longer be clean enough.  Not my problem, but an example of “Western Electric” telephone handset engineering.  Capable of operating after a flood or a nuke.

I am very upset.

And as if to rub my nose it (i.e., EOL), google helpfully offers me a selection of upgrades.

ARGH cubed!

— 30 —

‘Planned obsolescence is the craziest thinking in the world’: Apple hits back at claims it designs iPhones to fail so consumers have to buy a new one

  • VP of marketing Greg Joswiak refuted that Apple uses ‘planned obsolescence’
  • In an interview with noted Apple blogger John Gruber, he called those claims ‘about the craziest thinking in the world’ saying the firm wouldn’t do that
  • Joswiak said Apple paid special attention to older devices with iOs 12 update
  • Comments come as Apple gave customers discounts for battery throttling
  • Apple has been charging £25 ($29) for replacements since December

PUBLISHED: 19:07 EDT, 7 June 2018 | UPDATED: 19:18 EDT, 7 June 2018

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Yeah, right.  I believe that!


TECHNOLOGY: “Don’t be evil” should be “Don’t be stupid”!

Wednesday, May 23, 2018



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SM Boyd via Google News Help Forum <>
3:14 AM (5 hours ago)
to Google

From these posts and many others I’ve seen, Google clearly has NO idea what people were doing with their Google News pages. Google News used to be my home page, but that will change as of tomorrow. I have no use for half of the topics Google THINKS I do, and I have not been able to understand Google’s need to change for the sake of changing over the past few years. It seems as though Google is screwing up their products because “NEW & IMPROVED!!!” is only coming from the GoogleBubble. From all the data I know Google collects, you would think they would know how users are using their products.

To screw up something as basic as a News webpage leaves me wondering if I shouldn’t move away from Google products altogether. Gmail, maps etc. There is never a warning that something fundamental is going to change, it just happens, and users are left wondering how to recover what they’ve set up. I notice Google has demoted the famous “Don’t Be Evil” motto, maybe it’s time for a new one to live by: “Don’t Be Stupid.” They keep shooting themselves in the foot, but the billions keep rolling in, so I guess the actual users don’t matter. Whatever. The internet is much more than Google.

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Maybe this isn’t the biggest tech blunder since IBM ceded the PC to Microsoft or “No one would want a computer in the home”?

But then again, maybe it is.

I was moving from the Apple ecosystem to Google’s.  Maybe like  other feedbackers, I have to completely rethink that?

Like the last election,  Which is the prettiest horse in the glue factory coral.” Google versus Apple? Gasp, maybe even Microsoft gets in the running?


Google, don’t be stupid!

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TECHNOLOGY: End robocalls

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

7 ways to finally end robocalls
By Kim Komando | The Kim Komando Show

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1. Block individual numbers

This feature is available on iPhone and Android, the ability to block specific numbers. Blocking numbers won’t stop every robocall and spammer number out there, but you can at least block the recurring ones.

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I do this, but it’s just not enough.

When something is free (i.e., no charge to dial a number), it WILL be abused. 

Like SPAM emails from Nigerian Princes.

Need a fractional charge for every call and email. Maybe 100 for a penny?

½ for the transport and ½ for the recipient?

Works for me.

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TECHNOLOGY: Web 3.0 — the dWeb — will transform the inet again?

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Matteo Gianpietro Zago
Guinness World Record by creating the Most commented Item in the Web 2.0 history. Founder @
Jan 30
Why the Web 3.0 Matters and you should know about it

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How will it work?

Like any emerging technology is still being refined. For access to the decentralized web, people will only need a seed. This will be a single asset which enables the interaction with dApps and other services. Individuals will still use a web browser to access the internet, and visually it will be Web 2.0 user-friendly.

On the surface, the learning curve from 2.0 to 3.0 will be gentle. But behind the scenes, the framework connecting users with digital services are markedly different. Transactions are signed and verified manually, to prevent platforms from siphoning away personal information without due cause. Web users will opt in rather than trying — and often failing — to opt out.

  • Instead of Google Drive or Dropbox, we have services like Storj, Siacoin, Filecoin or IPFS technology to distribute and store files.
  • Instead of Skype we have platforms like
  • Instead of WhatsApp and Wechat we have Status
  • Instead of operating systems such as iOS and Android, frameworks such as and EOS provide a gateway to the new web.
  • Akasha or Steemit will play the role of Facebook, the Brave browser will serve as Chrome and Ethlance can take over from Upwork.

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TECHNOLOGY: Apple’s default SMS app is unavoidable

Monday, January 22, 2018

How to keep your iPhone but switch to Google or Microsoft apps
Your guide to a new software ecosystem.
By David Nield 6 hours ago

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Skype for iOS can take care of all your video calling, voice calling, and messaging needs. However, Apple’s mobile platform won’t allow any app to take over SMS duties, so you’re stuck with its Messages app. Still, the newly-revamped Skype app has a clean look and a comprehensive set of features that includes group chats and group video calls. Your only problem might be getting your friends to use it.

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Isn’t that an anti-trust violation?

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TECHNOLOGY: iPhones slow down after a year

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

iPhones start slowing down after a year of use, and that’s way too soon
By Jacob Kastrenakes  Dec 20, 2017, 5:15pm EST

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But the big conspiracy has been that Apple intentionally slows down your phone every time a new one comes out, a subtle way of encouraging you to buy it. And now we know that it’s true on some level, even if you take Apple’s word and see this as about preservation and not a sales tactic, since the software update that comes out alongside every phone seems to be what introduces the throttling. Here’s how Apple puts it in its statement describing what’s going on: “Our goal is to deliver the best experience for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices.”

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And, this — planned obsolesence — why I am leaving the Apple family for Android and Chromebook.

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