Monday, September 26, 2016

Apple is deleting music off your hard drives, my friends.

Not content with simply phoning home with a list of every piece of music you own, Apple is now taking stuff off your drives and deleting the ones they don't like.

...through the Apple Music subscription, which I had, Apple now deletes files from its users' computers. When I signed up for Apple Music, iTunes evaluated my massive collection of Mp3s and WAV files, scanned Apple's database for what it considered matches, then removed the original files from my internal hard drive. REMOVED them. Deleted. If Apple Music saw a file it didn't recognize—which came up often, since I'm a freelance composer and have many music files that I created myself—it would then download it to Apple's database, delete it from my hard drive, and serve it back to me when I wanted to listen, just like it would with my other music files it had deleted.

The best part of the above revelation is that you agreed to it. The long, unreadable, universally ignored ULA that everyone just clicks "agree" so they can use the program? Yeah, that says you agree to let them delete stuff off your PC/Mac/phone whatever. Not up at the top in big letters either, be it noted.

I don't have this problem at the moment, because in a paranoid reflex I automatically revoke permission for software to do anything at all regarding uploading "usage" data, automatic updates, any of it. My chief complaint with Windows 10 is forced updates. I do not want a company forcing files on my computer when they see fit.

But the author mentions a much larger issue that most people still seem unaware of. The very nature of the transaction you agree to when you buy something is changing, and not to your benefit.

For about ten years, I've been warning people, "hang onto your media. One day, you won't buy a movie. You'll buy the right to watch a movie, and that movie will be served to you. If the companies serving the movie don't want you to see it, or they want to change something, they will have the power to do so. They can alter history, and they can make you keep paying for things that you formerly could have bought. Information will be a utility rather than a possession. Even information that you yourself have created will require unending, recurring payments just to access."

When giving the above warning, however, even in my most Orwellian paranoia I never could have dreamed that the content holders, like Apple, would also reach into your computer and take away what you already owned. If Taxi Driver is on Netflix, Netflix doesn't come to your house and steal your Taxi Driver DVD. But that's where we're headed. When it comes to music, Apple is already there.

Yes they are, and so is Google and a few more. Microsoft and other large companies have gone to a "subscriber" model for their software, such as Office 365, and Adobe has a subscription-only model for Photoshop etc. This puts users of their software at their mercy. If you have a large body of work recorded in Photoshop file format, you are pretty well stuck with continuing your subscription. That's a problem, in my eyes.

Thus I offer as a public service the following: if you don't have to use a walled-garden product like iTunes, Photoshop, Office 365, iPhone/iPod/iPad, and so forth, don't do it. I switched back to Blackberry for this reason. Its a Canadian company that owns its own NON-AMERICAN server backbone, and it doesn't (at the moment) offer "services" that invade my hardware on their own. Whatever they do in Cupertino or Washington DC, Blackberry has its own stuff that won't be affected.

I use MS Word for convenience. But I also have software on hand that can convert those saved files to a variety of different formats, and I have two open-source alternatives to edit my files. LibreOffice and OpenOffice. I have ebooks on a Kindle sure enough, but I also have Calibre software to store and re-format those ebook files. I don't have to count on Amazon to remember what I bought from them. I've got a copy right here on my own drives.

I also have backups. I have backups of my backups. I have DVDs, thumb drives, and hard drives. I have hard drives sitting in dusty boxes in the basement. I'm pretty sure there's a box of tapes around here somewhere from the old days. I have an off- site server too. Slow and crappy thing I bought outright from some company that offers them dirt cheap.

Why bother with all that paranoid shit? Because what Apple is doing now, -everybody- is going to be doing presently. Having your own storage is going to be outlaw territory, like having a car with a carburetor is now. I like to be prepared for that kind of thing.

The Deplorable Yet Prepared Phantom

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Tesla hacked, door locks to brakes, from 12 miles.

This is getting to be a Regular Thing these days, there's no security in cars.

First, while the car was parked, the researchers used a laptop to remotely open its sunroof, activate the steering light, reposition the driver's seat, take over the dashboard and central display and unlock the car.
In a second demonstration, they turned on the windshield wipers while the car was being driven at low speed in a parking lot for demonstration purposes. They also showed that they can open the trunk and fold the side-view mirror when the driver is trying to change lanes. While these operations can be distracting to the driver in certain situations, causing a safety risk, the most dangerous thing they were able to do was to engage the car's breaking from 12 miles away.
Note the idiot journalist's misuse of "breaking" for braking.

Original blog post with video here.

This makes me really look forward to the self driving car, which will be able to steer as well as brake by computer control. Or more particularly, the self-driving delivery truck. When they start having a security guard in the trucks instead of a driver, you'll know that Peak Stupid has been reached in Silicon Valley.

The Deplorable Phantom

Update: Welcome Small Deplorable Animals! Thanks for the linkage Kate!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Ford moving production to Mexico. Not Canada.

With Detroit falling apart the last 40 years, it is no surprise Ford moved a lot of their production.

With the USA going full-SJW at the regulatory level, it is no surprise that Ford moved their production off-shore. In many states there is literally no way a big company can build a new factory on a green field. Not economically, and not legally. Can't be done.

    The news sparked a fresh round of criticism of Ford from Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump, who was campaigning in Flint on Wednesday.

    "We shouldn't allow it to happen. They'll make their cars, they'll employ thousands of people, not from this country, and they'll sell their car across the border," Trump said during his visit. "When we send our jobs out of Michigan, we're also sending our tax base."

I love how "tax cut" guy Donald Trump is so worried about his tax base. I love how Hillary Clinton probably doesn't even know about it, and couldn't care less if she did know.

But that's not what I want to say here. We know why Ford is moving out of the USA, they can't make a buck. The autoworker's union has managed to make a five-year-old, half billion dollar Focus plant in Michigan a loser. Ford is planing on spending over a billion and a half dollars on a new factory for the Ford Focus.

In Mexico.

That would be the same Mexico that has drug gangs controlling whole swaths of territory. The Mexico that Mexicans are fleeing to become illegals with no rights in the USA. The Mexico where they're hanging rows of people off of road bridges, shooting them, knifing them, chopping off heads, burning them alive, and so forth. The Mexico where the cops are the Army, and the Army is more crooked than the damn drug lords.

That Mexico.

But that's not what I want to say either.

Here's my question: Why isn't Ford building its new Focus plant in Canada?

Nobody is getting shot/knifed/burned/chopped here. There's no drug overlords running Ontario or Quebec. Canadians are not fleeing the nation to hide in the USA and cut other people's grass. Why not here?

That's a question I know I'm never going to see any fracking news-norbert ask Prime Minister P'tit Ptat. That is a question that nobody is going to corner frigging Ontario Premiere Kathleen Wynne at a news conference and demand an answer for. Nobody is going to grab Quebec Premiere Philippe Couillard by his lapels and scream that in his ridiculous face, like they should.

Because it's a stupid question. We all know why Ford is not building a new plant here in Canada.

They would have to be fricking crazy to build here. The Canadian government is already bleeding them white, it would be suicidal for them to build here.

But it is a question we'd better start asking ourselves, or we'll all be stony broke really soon.

The Deplorable Phantom

Update: Hi, Kathy! :) Welcome, 5 feet of Fury readers!

Friday, September 09, 2016

Gays told to get back on the Dem plantation.

Pink Pistols are finding out that its only okay to be gay when you do what your overseer tells you.

Gwendolyn Patton, the national spokeswoman for the Pink Pistols, has spent the summer trying to keep up with the all inquiries about the group and how to start new chapters. 

"People don't like to feel helpless," said Patton, a lesbian who lives outside Philadelphia.

The Pink Pistols has received a mostly negative response from the broader LGBT community, she said. Some LGBT centers, she said, have even specifically banned the Pink Pistols from using their facilities.

I keep saying this, and I keep getting called names for it but I'm going to say it again anyway: If you are gay, the Left does not care a damn about you.

If you are gay, and you decide to go against the teachings of the Left, like high taxes, gun control, what have you, your protected status will vanish like the morning dew, and you will be under the bus with white male rednecks so fast it will curl your hair.

Don't say I didn't warn you.

The Phantom

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Youtube goes full-SJW.

It is official, Google/YouTube has gone full-SJW with it's new content policy.

A new "advertiser friendly" policy introduced by YouTube will punish those who express politically incorrect opinions or dare to offend viewers by de-monetizing their content.

The new rules have sparked an outcry from the YouTube community because they are so incredibly restrictive.

YouTube will now retain the right to demonetize any videos that contain, "Controversial or sensitive subjects and events, including subjects related to war, political conflicts, natural disasters and tragedies, even if graphic imagery is not shown."

"Inappropriate language, including harassment, profanity and vulgar language," is also being demonetized.

As usual, Matt Drudge has the flawless take on the issue:

As Matt Drudge warned about when he appeared on the Alex Jones Show nearly a year ago, creators allowing their content to be swallowed up by social media ghettos was always going to lead to this outcome.

"I don't know why they've been successful in pushing everybody into these little ghettos, these Facebooks, these Tweets, these Instagrams," Drudge told Jones. "This is ghetto, this is corporate; they're taking your energy and you're getting nothing in return."

I guess we'll be looking at Pewdie Pie on his own non-Youtube channel pretty soon. It isn't like the guy is going to stop swearing, right?

Robot -Tractor-, finally.

At long last, a practical use for all that self-driving car tech: self-driving tractor. And a badass looking one at that.

That is one burly tractor.

Case IH, the agricultural-machinery unit of CNH Industrial NV, this week unveiled a sleek, aggressive-looking red-and-black machine at the annual Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa.

This tractor -- CNH calls it the Autonomous Concept Vehicle -- has one obvious difference compared with more conventional models: there's no cab for a driver. Instead, it comes equipped with cameras, radar and GPS, allowing a farmer to remotely monitor planting and harvesting via an app on a tablet computer, the company's Brand President Andreas Klauser said in an interview Wednesday as crowds gathered around the machine to snap photographs.

One of the best things I can think of for a machine like this to be doing is gang-planting the idiotically large fields out west. Picture five of these things in echelon formation, playing follow-the-leader like a bunch of Roomba vacuum cleaners, except they're all pulling 40 ft wide no-till seed drills. That's some economy of scale right there. Do the same thing with sprayers and combine harvesters, you've got a one-man show.

The Phantom