Archive for February, 2014

Welcome to Wisconsin…


Not much more to say…

If I didn’t know better

I’d think I was back in Kansas.

With the weather here today, you could easily fool me.

Snow, rain, hail, thunder, lightening, wind, temps in the upper 20s and low 40s.

It’s like Kansas in the sprint time.

Don’t be a Glasshole

Seems Google has heard all the rumblings and concerns (and mocking) about their forthcoming product “Glass”.

You know the wearable device that looks like a pair of eyeglasses, but with a little computer and display integrated into it.

The product is getting ready to launch to the general public in a while, and Google has high hopes for the device. It is, after all, a huge step into the realm of wearable technology.

I’ve gone on record as hating the thing from the start. I would never use one, and I’m not sure how I’d react to actually seeing in the “wild”.

Google now seems to be hearing a lot more people like me express “concerns” about the device and how the wearers/operators/owners will be using the devices and behaiving in public.

So, they have published a “Do’s and Don’ts” file for the new “Explorers” as they call them.

It’s pretty funny.

The best thing is that they call people who are being jerks “Glassholes”.

Love it!

I’ve used the term before for a wide variety of things, but to think that the term Glasshole could become a permanent part of our tech/pop culture is too funny.

The last sentence is really the telling one.

Breaking the rules or being rude will not get businesses excited about Glass and will ruin it for other Explorers.”

In other words, please don’t be a complete asshat (read: Glasshole) with our pet project because we really don’t want organizations to start banning them like firearms or cigarets.

Yeah, that would be horrible for business.

Rnadom thoughts

Why do some people seem to emit some sort of strange EM field when it comes to technology?

Seriously. No matter what you do, these people find ways to have strangest and the most mind-boggling “experiences” with technology that you can imagine.

Tech that works just fine for other people, fails in new and spectacular ways for these people. Take it away from them and it starts working just fine.

/puzzled_stare = on

What gives?

No matter what you do, how many times you look at the device or whatnot, how many times you “fix” it or look at it and find nothing wrong, they will manages to mess it all up.

Personally, I think they are aliens of some sort.

Or maybe robots.



I’m officially sending up an S.O.S.

For me right now, that stands for “Sick Of Snow”.

I’m done. Stick a fork in me. Finished.

Winter can leave any time.

As Gollum said, “Go now and never come back!”

The snow keeps piling up. I don’t even want to know what our annual total is at this point. It would depress me.

And what do we have today? Another winter storm bringing 6-8 inches of MORE snow.

Did I mention I’m done?

I think the snow is making everyone a little nuts.

Between the insanely cold temps and the massive quantity of snow, it’s been a nasty winter.

Did mention I’m ready for spring?



Note to self.

Be sure you pay attention to the type of oranges you buy at the store.

The ones with seeds in them SUCK!



Mrs. Technocrat and I are going to plant a garden this year.

But trying to plan out where to put the raised beds, how bid to make them and such it a little difficult when you can’t even SEE your freaking backyard because there is nothing but SNOW out there!

Did I mention I’m sick of snow?


Random Acts of Kindness.

We need more of those.


Yes, there’s something specific that brought this on today.

Nope, not gonna share it.

Let’s just say that good deeds and Random Acts of Kindness are their own rewards.

Here’s to all the people that know this and try to live the idea.



About a billion different articles on about a million different (new) DSLR cameras in my news feeds today.

What gives?

Is it Camera-Review Wednesday and no one told me about it?


Anyone else think Google Glass is just plain creepy?

Virgin Atlantic just announced that some flight personnel are going to be equipped with the things to assist at check in.



You mean it was too difficult to take your boarding pass, scan it across the barcode reader, hand it back to you and say thanks?

How does that process need further automation? How is Google Glass going to help?

I’m surprised the TSA would allow them. After all, don’t they frown on recording stuff in an airport?

The whole wearable technology thing is getting far too much attention for me. After all, it’s really nothing “new”. It’s just putting a smartphone/camcorder/gadget onto a pair of eye glasses frames.

Why do you need to WEAR that? You have it in your pocket already? Are you that lazy that you need your device plastered to your face all the time?

Now if it really did something cool, like allow you to see in a different spectrum of light, or even sense biofeedback from people so you could tell if they were lying to you, THEN that would be different.

You know what I’m talking about.



That would be cool!

Instead we have Google Glass. The new tool for perverts, voyeurs and voyeurs wanting to document every possible fucking minute of their lives.

I think we as a race (meaning humans) need to have a serious, “Whoa there nelly” moment and rethink what tech is doing to us.

I read a lot, and consider myself open to a lot of things tech-wise in life. And yes, I know Google Glass is just a “stepping stone” to something different that we don’t know about, or maybe cant’ even envision yet.

I know I rail on this product a lot. But come one folks….how can you NOT find it silly.


Wait, is that a Cylon?

Coding as a language

I read an article this week talking about how some schools in (I think) Kentucky have changed some language requirements for their students.

When I was in high school (and middle school and grade school) I never “had” to take a foreign language. Now, my parents had different ideas, but as for the school, there was no foreign language requirement for anything.


That’s not the same as today.

My oldest is getting ready to hit High School and they have to take a least one language class. One semester out of four years of school. They recommend more as “college prep”.

The youngest is in middle school and he has to take a class called “Intro to World Languages”. It’s two semesters long and they sample Spanish, French, German and Mandarin.

I’m a big fan of all this. I think languages are really important and in today’s world, the more you can communicate the better. My parents believed that learning a language accomplished far more than just another communication tool. I tend to agree.

I took multiple years of private, tutored German lessons in grade school. In junior high school, Latin. Yes, Latin. Two years of it. My parents didn’t give me a choice. To be hones, it was a good thing. I learned how languages work in Latin, and how to learn a language. It taught me skills I still use today.

Later in High School, Spanish. Two years.

My parents were correct, I learned more than just communication tools. Today, I still use my Spanish here and there, and the foundations I learned in Latin are still relevant.

But spoken languages aren’t for everyone. They are difficult to learn and you have to practice them. A lot.

So what’s my point here?

Well, in Kentucky, some schools are now allowing coding classes to count as a language.

Yup. You have a language requirement? A Java class will satisfy the requirement.

Don’t like the idea of German? Try Python instead.

Mandarin? How about Objective-C?

It’s a different world and these schools are adapting to it.

At first I wasn’t sure how I felt about this. I’m having more and more “grumpy old man” moments and I was skeptical.

“Damn kids…I had to take a foreign language…hell…I took three! They should have to also!”

But now that I’ve pondered it, I’m a fan.

Think about it for a second.

Coding languages are just that…languages. They have their own syntax, structure and vocabulary. They function much like spoken languages, except that instead of communicating verbally, they communicate (often times) visually.

It’s an intriguing idea, and one that I’m all for.

I’m not recommending this for everyone, and I do NOT think they should replace spoken languages outright. But for some students, I think it’s a fantastic idea.

It encourages kids to get into coding; a skill set that has life-long implications. It’s a skill set that is in high demand today. It teaches critical thinking, organization, structure and often times collaboration.

And I also suspect that it encourages creativity.

There will always be a need for foreign languages. Yes, it’s good to start them early. But there is a stigma to them, and allowing an “alternative” such as this is a progressive move that should be applauded.

I know Kentucky isn’t the first to do this.

I hope they aren’t the last and other school districts follow suit.