Sure, the mother of all demos celebrated its 50th anniversary last year, but yesterday was the 35th anniversary of the debut of the Macintosh. Most people only remember the Macintosh Super Bowl ad, but it cannot be understated the effect the release of the Macintosh had on the world. At a time when most computers were difficult to use, the… Read more →
Yesterday, thirty five years ago, one of the most important supreme court cases in my lifetime was decided, Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc. – Wikipedia. More commonly called the Betamax decision, this case allowed the sale and use of the video cassette recorder. The case started with the release of Sony’s Betamax video tape recorder in the early 1970s. Universal Studios and the Walt Disney Company reasoned that since the VCRs could be used for copyright infringement, then Sony should be liable for such infringement.
Luckily for us, the supreme court ruled that time shifting content in your home is not copyright infringement, and that VCRs had enough non-infringing use that VCR sales should continue. This ruling also helped make ripping CDs to MP3s legal. If the case would have gone the other way, then pop culture would look really different today. The home market for videos would be basically non-existent, you would only be able to see movies in the theater, on pay cable, or broadcast TV.
Although these are VHS and not Betamax, here’s a visualization of vhs covers. A lot of these are surprisingly recognizable.
I’m not a fan of online quizzes, but the subject matter of this one is brilliant.
Facebook has made it in the news a lot recently, and now conspiracy theories are starting to rise. What if Facebook’s ’10 Year Challenge’ is really a way for Facebook to train its facial recognition features. And apparently, most Facebook users don’t realize Facebook is tracking their interests. I’m not in the #deletefacebook crowd, I just try to not feed the beast. I only check FB every couple of weeks for messages, and when I check FB, I do it from an incognito window. My phone is devoid of Facebook and Messenger.
Oh my, daughter calls the cops after her father takes away her smartphone.. Boy is she in for a rude awakening once she gets out to the real world.
If you have others using your iPhone, such as child, there is a hack to let you password protect your apps. The hack uses the screentime protection features of iOS 12 to require a password to launch apps. Pretty ingenius.
In my day, we microwaved pizzas like poor college students should, but now, Ohio State students can get their pizzas from an ATM!
Computer security is hard, and if you’re going to fake documents, do some research on your fonts.
Finally, if you are trying to create some photos for Snapchat with your guns, you may want to unload them first. And if you’re arguing with your SO, don’t hand her a loaded gun and have her point it at you.
Technology gets a bad rap, and is blamed for a ton of society ills. But, that line of thinking just focuses on the negative. In Tokyo, technology is allowing a cafe to use robots controlled by paralyzed people. First it was Space Invaders wrist, then it was Nintendo thumb. Now, we have selfie wrist. Think of the children! Lawyers should… Read more →
In the beginning, we had analog clocks and we liked them. Learning what the big hand and little hand represents was a huge accomplishment when we were 6. Later came digital clocks, which took a lot of the fun away from learning to tell time. For a time, I was using a binary clock. It was a lot of fun,… Read more →
Sometimes, even seven year olds can teach adults a thing or two, especially when it comes to getting clothes at Christmas. In Ontario, a seven year old called 911 after getting snow pants for Christmas. Every year, the city of Gavle, Sweden erects the world’s largest straw goat for Christmas, and then spends the rest of the season protecting it… Read more →
A huge genre of videogames in the 80s and early 90s was the text adventure. Because there were memory and graphic limits on the machines available at the time, the interactive text adventures took a page out of books, and used words to describe the world in the game. These were more than just books, you would have to interact… Read more →
The nets are raging this week over whether or not Die Hard is a Christmas movie. Maybe people raged every year and I didn’t know. Anyway, is Die Hard a Christmas movie? Of course, someone had to survey people on this question, and the results overwhelmingly say that Die Hard is not a Christmas movie. Those people are wrong, and to… Read more →
I joined twitter in March of 2007, and my first tweet was not Shakespeare by any means. To find this piece of internet history, I had to download my archive of tweets from Twitter. This doesn’t sound like it would be to tough of a job, but of course there is a gotcha. After logging in to Twitter, go to… Read more →
Welcome to the first This Geek in Review, a weekly column where I share some of the internet’s geek side. Last week we lost the creator of Spongebob Squarepants, Stephen Hillenburg, to Lou Gehrig’s disease. One of his early animations from animation school is available on Youtube. The Guardian has posted some great pictures from the production of the original… Read more →
I’ve talked about my set up for lists a couple of times, but it’s been awhile so I believe it is time for an update. For those that don’t remember, I keep my to do lists in plain text files and store them in a Dropbox folder. I use a specific format for these to do files called taskpaper. Taskpaper… Read more →