SERVICE: GIST goes bye bye; don’t depend on anything in the cloud?

We started Gist in 2008 to make connecting with your key contacts faster and easier to help you create stronger business relationships. In February of 2011, we become part of Research In Motion (RIM) to bring the Gist vision to millions of BlackBerry customers. Since our acquisition we built the BlackBerry Playbook Contacts app and more recently, our team has been tasked with creating the native address book/contact manager for the next generation platform, BlackBerry 10.

In addition to our core focus on the Contacts app, we have been given expanded responsibility for everything social at RIM including BlackBerry Messenger, Facebook and Twitter apps and instant messaging as well as much of the identity platform, location services and user analytics features.

With all this responsibility, we feel even more empowered to deliver a truly unique and amazing experience for aggregating, enhancing and connecting you deeply with your key contacts. All of this feels pretty exciting, but you may have noticed limited innovation on the core Gist product offering over the last year. In an effort to make the most of our new focus, we have, with heavy hearts, decided to shutdown the stand-alone Gist service. Sigh.

As of today, we are no longer accepting new users and will officially be closing on September 15, 2012. Click here to read the blog post and learn how to get your data out of Gist so you can transition to another service.

The Gist Team

# – # – #  


# – # – # – # – #   

SERVICE: GOOOGLE READER changes silently

Lots of techie problems this week and it shows. Took almost 5 hours to do what normally takes 45 minutes.

Biggest problem is that GOOGLE READER changed. Silently, no notice. Now I can NOT cut ‘n’ paste an expanded series of stories.

No way; no how.

Chrome, Firefox, and Opera — all act the same.

Why I don’t like “the cloud”!!!

<Expletive Deleted>

# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: “Human Resouce” problems on both sides of the fence

10 hard truths IT must learn to accept
Unsanctioned devices, compromised networks, downtime — today’s IT is all about embracing imperfections
By Dan Tynan, InfoWorld
July 18, 2011 06:08 AM ET

*** begin quote ***

IT concession No. 6: You will never have enough hands on deck. IT departments often want a fairer shake when it comes to outsourcing and head count reductions, but they’re not likely to get it, says Meikle.

Because the tech outsourcing industry is much more mature than, say, legal services or HR outsourcing, IT is often the first to suffer when corporate bloodletting occurs. That’s not likely to change.

The solution to IT manpower problems, says Meikle, is to take advantage of third-party outsourcers and integrate with them as much as possible. The bodies are still available; they’re just not under your own roof anymore.

Also, says Meikle, be sure look out for No. 1. Keep your tech chops current with an eye on the next job before the current one evaporates.

“IT pros need to understand they work for themselves first, the organization second,” he says. “They need to continue developing their network and contacts, marketing themselves, and developing a personal brand even when they are employed. Like it or not, IT pros may have to pony up some dough personally to pay for their education and marketability, but that will pay dividends when the chips are down.”

*** end quote ***

I see several facets in this item. None good for folks stuck in the old memes!

1. Corporations are going to need help. Regardless of their plans for HR.

2. Employees must recognize that they are “consultants”. Very expensive and very expendable.

3. Technology obsolescence will quickly and silently hit corporations and individuals.

Make plans accordingly.

# # # # #

HARDWARE: POGOPLUG becomes much more valuable


For a C Note and an external USB hard drive, you have your own “cloud”. This is an amazing solution. And, the fact, that it has no monthly charge, is stunning.

Put one in a friend’s house and you have off-site backup. And, it doesn’t preclude him putting his own along side it. I can see a lot of mutual back scenarios being created.

Hurry before they raise the price.

# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: The “iCosystem”? WTH it’s about creating “dead end” that are rich for Apple

Andrew McAfee is a principal research scientist at the MIT Center for Digital Business.

*** begin quote ***

I hope the vitriol and alarmism around the iCosystem dies down, because it’s not doing much good. Maybe Barry Goldwater was right that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. But crying wolf surely is.

*** end quote ***

I could care less about the “iCosystem”. If Apple can con folks into paying a health markup for some dumbed down hardware / software platform, more power to them. (Happened to be at the Apple store yesterday, saw a lot of playing but not a lot of buying. Saw quite a few monitors being exchanged. Saw a lot of bitching about hardwre problems. Including me, with a defective Time Capsule. Saw two purchases. One cash and one credit card. Have to do a lot better to pay the rent, I suspect.) While if given one, I certainly would refuse, put it in the trash, or put it in the corner. But, why should I buy an expensive dead end on the Information Super Highway. It has just enough “features” to fool the technological illiterate into buying it. First, which model do you buy. Cheap “small” wifi or expensive “big” talker? You don’t get the ubiquity of the cloud without getting the talker. With only wifi, then the device is shown to be an “island” as one struggles to find free wifi. Not very “ubiquitous”. And, like a coffin, the “closed” nature of the beast starts to give you claustrophobia. Buy the WSJ, buy more apps, buy games, buy, buy, buy. Bye bye wallet. And, what do you have after all these “purchases” (Oh, I should say “licenses”!) when you can “lose” your access to what you think you bought. We haven’t heard that screaming yet. But sooner or later it’ll come. Nope, it’s a dead end. Designed to allow the old media to pretend to have adapted. imho

# # # # #

SERVICE: Surprise GMAIL CONTACTS has quotas? Who knew!

*** begin quote ***

Over contacts quota

Because problems can occur when you have an extremely large number of contacts in your Google Account (note that this number includes the people you’re following on Google Buzz), we’ve implemented some quota restrictions. If you take an action that would put you beyond this limit, we’ll show you an error message.

One common reason for having a large number of contacts is having many duplicate entries. We recommend using the merge tools in your Contact Manager to consolidate your duplicates and make room for new additions.

You can also back up your existing contacts by exporting to a CSV file.

*** end quote ***


Another reason “cloud computing” won’t work. Surprises!

# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: MEGAMILLIONS site is overwhelmed

Winning Numbers – Mega Millions Official Home

Winning Numbers: 4/30/2010. Mega Millions drawings are held Tuesday and Friday at 11:00 p.m. Five balls are drawn from a set of balls numbered 1 through 56; …

# – # – #

The page cannot be displayed

The request cannot be processed at this time. The amount of traffic exceeds the Web site’s configured capacity.

Please try the following:

   * Click the Refresh button, or try again later.

   * If this error persists, contact the Web site administrator to inform them that this error continues to occur for this URL address.

HTTP Error 500.13 – Server error: Web server is too busy.

Internet Information Services (IIS)

Technical Information (for support personnel)

   * Go to Microsoft Product Support Services and perform a title search for the words HTTP and 500.

   * Open IIS Help, which is accessible in IIS Manager (inetmgr), and search for topics titled Monitoring and Tuning Web Application Performance, Performance Monitoring and Scalability Tools, and About Custom Error Messages.

# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: MiFi 2200 portable EV-DO router  

MiFi 2200 portable EV-DO router

Technology is the summation of hardware and software. It’s VERY very expensive. This unit intrigues me because what COULD it replace?

Home cable internet service? The Verizon Wireless Broadband USB plug? Cell phones?

The solid trade offs are: ISPs charge 50/month — with hidden caps. The VWBBIE is 70/month.

The soft trade offs are: one or more cell phones. The darned home land line.

The question is what are the true costs of the “MyFy”? Capital, operating, 4 hour battery life.

Home has two computers on a Wifi. But only one user … me.

Would it support Skype, Gizmo, SIP, and such?

Lot of questions.

Biggest problem is I have no clue as to what’s my home byte count on a daily or monthly basis.

And, I hear the Sprint commercials with unlimited usage.

Too many questions and an unknown TCO.


# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: Print On Demand for magazines

A Cloud In Every Garage
Russ Daniels, 05.07.09, 06:00 PM EDT
HP on how cloud computing can help re-ignite the global economy.

*** begin quote ***

HP has a cloud service, called MagCloud, that makes it possible for anyone to publish a professional-quality magazine and print, promote, sell and deliver it on demand. Printing on demand means no large press runs, no pre-publication expense, no waste.

By eliminating substantial pieces of the physical supply chain, we can offer professional-quality print to a mass audience while reducing the impact on the environment. The same on-demand technology can be extended to book publishing and allow individuals to print customized books, mixing their own content with that of professionals.

Looking ahead, we envision a rich ecosystem of printing services–connecting businesses to businesses and businesses to individuals–that delivers information where, when and how it’s needed.

*** end quote ***

Print On Demand for magazines?

I like POD for books. It makes the family history possible. Have to see how this is implemented and how much it costs. Niche magazines might be possible if they are built on a advertising model and if they are dirt cheap. Where will be the margin for the mission?

Reigniting the world economy?


Cloud computing has major problems: version control; payment; and data ownership right off the top of my head.

Maybe I’m just an old fuddy duddy

Besides, connectivity to the cloud is NOT ubiquitous or cheap (i.e., free are very close to it). And the ISPs (i.e., AT&T, the Bells, Comcast, the Cable Companies) have other ideas on how they are going to keep their monopoly and monitize it. And, don’t forget how they are strangling peer 2 peer technology with caps and deep stateful packet inspection (i.e., poisoning).

No, this ain’t the Far East with big pipes to the home and “enlighted” politicial and technology leadership.

The inet may have been an American invention, but it’s going to be the Far East boom 2.0!

# # # # #

SERVICE: Google READER has had a subtle change

Has reader changed with respect to the handling of previously read items?

Now I see them even though I read them before. Using the space bar, it just goes through every old post.

I’m going to have to switch back to bloglines.

This is what’s wrong with cloud computing.

# # # # #

SERVICE: FACEBOOK changes suck

FACEBOOK is a free service. As such, I give them a lot of latitude about what they choose to do.

BUT, (there is always a big butt),

The keep changing the their human interface.

Without apparent rhyme or reason. And, without consideration of their users.

I liked the old “FRIEND GROUP” page. Why not have an option to use the new or the old?

It’s a small thing but groups in the left column are displayed sort of by last use. I’m an alpha guy. You try finding a specific group in a jumble of groups.


FACEBOOK maybe the “only game in town”, but heaven help them if they aren’t. I think they are at risk of competition.

# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: WGA is one of the reasons I’ve left MSFT

Windows Genuine Advantage is still genuinely bad
Ryan Russell By Ryan Russell

*** begin quote ***

Microsoft’s system for validating Windows before users can download most updates continues to be a problem for legitimate customers and for Internet security as a whole.

*** end quote ***

And, what exactly are you buying when you give Microsoft your hard earned money — either directly or indirectly?

Nothing. Potentially nothing.

For any reason at all they can “turn you off”.


Not for me any more.

I’m moving.

Glacially it seems at times, but moving.

To Linux.

# # # # #

SERVICE: One “cloud” service changes its TOS!

*** begin quote ***

The Gallery’s Terms of Service have changed.

Can’t see everything? Visit us here.

Add to your Address Book to ensure delivery to your inbox.

Thank you for being a Gallery customer-we appreciate you choosing us for your photo management needs.

So that you are aware, we have modified our Terms of Service*: To more effectively serve our Gallery members, we have adjusted our photo-storage policy to align with storage usage.

To store photos at the Gallery, members with photo storage of 2 gigabytes (GB) or less must make annual minimum purchases totaling at least $4.99.** Failure to meet this requirement may result in your photos being deleted from the Gallery.

Your recent purchases make you compliant with the new storage policy until 12/15/2009; no action is required at this time. Click Here to see your status details.

Thanks again for choosing the Gallery. We look forward to our continued relationship with you.

The KODAK Gallery

*** end quote ***

Here’s another problem with cloud services: They think they can change their TOS anytime they want.
They don’t realize that they are betraying the trust that people put in them and all cloud services.
# # # # #

SERVICE: What is an iName?

What is an iName?

An iName is a single, unified communications address that gives you one digital identity for all your online communications and transactions. This advanced digital addressing breakthrough shields you and your personal information from spam, online scams, data mining, and identity theft, and assures you of the highest standard of data and identity privacy and security.

# – # – #

Jury’s still out for me.
Try mine at:

# # # # #

SERVICE: Carbonite Loses Customers’ Data

Online Backup Company Carbonite Loses Customers’ Data, Blames And Sues Suppliers
by Robin Wauters on March 23, 2009

The danger of storing your data in the cloud, part n. VC-backed online backup and storage provider Carbonite has lost data of 7,500+ customers who relied on the company to keep their files safe, The Boston Globe unveiled over the weekend.

# – # – #

Cloud computing for backups? Not for those 7,500+ people!

# # # # #

SERVICE: Yahoo BRIEFCASE service shutting down

Dear Yahoo! Briefcase user,

We will be officially closing Yahoo! Briefcase on March 30, 2009. Until then, we are offering you the opportunity to download your files back to your computer. You will need to take action before we close, after which any files remaining on Yahoo! Briefcase will be deleted and no longer accessible.

To access your Yahoo! Briefcase account, click the link below:

If you are a Yahoo! Briefcase Premium subscriber, your current subscription will be canceled on March 30, 2009. We will refund the unused portion of your Premium subscription, if any. The refund will appear as a credit via the billing method we have on file for you. So please make sure that your billing information is correct and up-to-date. For more information, please visit

For additional information or to review a list of our frequently asked questions, click the link below:

Briefcase Help

We appreciate your being a Yahoo! Briefcase user.

Yahoo! Customer Support

# – # – #

Why don’t I feel appreciated? Demonstrating a big flaw in cloud computing. Vendors quit! Even if you’re paying them!
# # # # #

SERVICE: FACEBOOK mistake documented!

One of my fellow alums posted a status referring to a link.


So I queried, an she sent back:


So, clearly, we have nailed a FACEBOOK error!

The same page shows her one thing and me another.

Love it!

Talk to me about “cloud computing” some more.

# # # # #

TECHNOLOGY: Cloud computing road blocks

   * 1. Availability of service

   * 2. Data lock-in

   * 3. Data confidentiality and auditability

   * 4. Data transfer bottlenecks

   * 5. Performance unpredictability

   * 6. Scalable storage

   * 7. Bugs in large distributed systems

   * 8. Scaling quickly

   * 9. Reputation fate sharing

   * 10. Software licensing

# – # – #

An excellent summary. Now how do you navigate around them?

# # # # #


Click to access Learn_To_Listen_SMB.pdf

# # # # #

SERVICE: Shuts Down

College Music Service Shuts Down
by Jason Kincaid on February 6, 2009

*** begin quote ***

At around 5 PM EST today the site went down with a notice stating that it was undergoing an update. As of 5:30, it was displaying the shutdown notice seen above.
We’re told that music that has not passed its “renew date” still works, but that music that has expired will no longer work because the DRM licensing server has apparently shut down.
*** end quote ***

And, people argue that “cloud computing” is the wave of the future?
# # # # #

SERVICE: VERIZONWIRELESS webservice changes silently?

Chat InformationPlease wait for a site operator to respond.

Chat InformationYou are now chatting with ‘Stephanie’

Stephanie: Hello. Thank you for visiting our chat service. What kind of help do you need with My Verizon Log in or Registration assistance?

reinkefj: trying to login and it looks like it doesn’t remember me.

Stephanie: I’m more than willing to assist you in any way that I can. Your cell phone number did not pull up for me. Do you mind verifying that number again please?

reinkefj: xxx-xxx-xxxx

reinkefj: ?

Stephanie: I do understand how frustrating it can be not being able to log into your online account. It is okay and I am here to help you today by walking you through a password reset. First, can I get you to verify the Account Owner’s last four digits if the Social Security number?

reinkefj: xxxx

Stephanie: Thank you so much for verifying that information Reinkefj. May I have your full name please?

reinkefj: sigh, xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Stephanie: Please scroll to the top of the page and hover your mouse over “My Verizon. Choose Account Type and then click on “Forgot Password,” under the log in section.You will be prompted to enter in your mobile device number. Please enter your mobile device number, and do not include any dashes or spaces. Once entered, please click “continue”.

reinkefj: say not registered with myverizon

Stephanie: Ok. Please scroll to the top of the page and hover your mouse over “My Verizon”. Click on that and you’ll see a blue link that says “Register”. Then click on that link. Next enter your mobile device number, and do not include any dashes or spaces. Once entered, click “continue”.

reinkefj: I don’t want to go thru a reregistration. I was registered already. Has it all been lost?

Stephanie: Which number did you enter?

reinkefj: xxxxxxxxxx

Stephanie: The number ending in yyyy is registered as the account owner. The Account Owner has access to all account management functions. This includes viewing and paying bills online, upgrading equipment, account and calling plan changes.

reinkefj: When I logon to the site I use reinkefj and my password. Now it doesn’t work. Explanation?

Stephanie: Your online password is between 8-20 characters, should contains at least one (1) number and one (1) letter. With spaces or special characters. ‘

reinkefj: My online password is eight characters and has a number in it. Has Verizon changesd its password standards and that is why it doesn’t work now?

Stephanie: No that I am aware of. What I can do is walk you through a password reset to help you access your account. Is that ok?

reinkefj: yes

Stephanie: Please scroll to the top of the page and hover your mouse over “My Verizon. Choose Account Type and then click on “Forgot Password,” under the log in section.You will be prompted to enter in your mobile device number. Please enter your mobile device number, and do not include any dashes or spaces. Once entered, please click “continue”.

reinkefj: It says “not registered”.

Stephanie: The number ending in xxxx is not registered. The number ending in yyyy is what was registered.

reinkefj: Not unless some one changed something. aaaa, bbbb, and cccc are the numbers I use. My car has a number. And, my VWBB has a number. But, that’s it. xxxx is the main number.

Stephanie: I can change that for you, but as of right now the xxxx is not registered.

reinkefj: Thanks. I quit.

# – # – #

Argh! Here’s a half hour of my life I’ll never get back. So what once worked, doesn’t. And, I, as the customer, have to jump through hoops. Great!

# # # # #