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Assange and the Politics of Tech

The founder of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange announced this week that the whistle blower organization will be planing on releasing and publishing another stream of sensitive information that has implications of adversely affecting the presidential hopefull Hillary Clinton. This will be coming from her private email serve while she served as secretary of state and will be a major blow to her already spotty credibility. What remains to be seen is if the information provided will amount to anything substantive that could be used in a court of law against her, or whether or not it remains something that they cannot offer as evidence. The reason being is that for all intensive purposes its going to be highly irregular and illegal the way it was obtained. That being the case this may only clear a path for a Trump presidency which has everyone wishing we could go back in time one year and rectify this whole political arena and mad house we find ourselves in today. This is all considered within the larger context of economy of tech. 

Assange said that, “we have upcoming leaks in relation to Hillary Clinton… we have emails pending publication.” the sites founder Julian Assange told U.K’s ITV Sunday He was not able to indicate how many said emails he would be publishing, nor how the site would or when the release would occur, but we can rest assured
that it is going to be a big one. He was been critical of the presumptive Democratic nominee, but told ITV that Loretta Lynch would not indict her. “she’s not gonig to indict Hillar Clinton, that’s not possible. It’s not going to happen. But the FBI can push for concessions from a Clinton Gov.” 

This is a crazy political arena we find ourselves in considering the recent attacks in Orlando that resulted in the death of 50 individuals and the injury of 51 others. Hillary is calling for stronger more hawkish attacks on ISIS which is strange considering that ISIS was not responsible for the recent attacks. At the end of the day we can safely assume that the limited freedoms we enjoy now in terms of net neutrality and privacy on the internet are going to be greatly curtailed and even totally eliminated this time next year. Either candidate is going to be trample individual liberties and greatly affect what we understand as normal when it comes to our interactions with the government. It is in a sense the culmination of what Edward Snowden warned against several years prior. In so far as his warning that even if you feel that the tools of government are too powerful, they remain in hands you more or less trust not to abuse said power. However, whoever wins the upcoming election, all bets are off, and we are going to be trust into a political free fall that may be the last one we ever know. Like a forest that is too choked out from any light reaching its roots, so too is the state of the American political arena, where in the only way it can be purged or cleaned is with a cleansing fire.

 

The Ad Blocking Dilemma

Lets face it the internet is one giant multi national billboard. A means for anyone to plug their product or service by directly reaching their clients or potential clients though search engine specific content targeting. In terms of advertising there has never been anything this direct or successful in achieving this end. But for the everyday internet user they see this constant stream eerily Stop-hljtising1 and applicable advertising for your particular circumstance or disposition at the time. How many times have you looked at the advertisements and thought “this thing knows me, better than I know me” to escape this weird orwellian nightmare of content specifically geared for you many have turned to Ad Blocking software to avoid the omnipresent distraction.

But the very content we seek out and love can only maintain its level of excellence through the direct funding of advertisers. Thus Adblockers is undoubtedly a big deal for the internet and the future of the production of content. and it is clear that something has got to give in this arena because they are loosing money, in a big, big way. Ad blockers put themselves forth as a means to circumnavigate the ills of data collectors and bring place themselves upon a plane as an almost robinhoodian hero of the internet and net neutrality. However, we often forget that Ad Blocking services need to keep the lights on and are a tech business in the same way any internet company is. Their business is not different than the very ones they claim they are protecting you from.

In fact the Ad Blocking companies are making their money by streamlining the way to advertisers by offering a back door to your internet content, and giving the most robust and complete look at your data and search history. what are the implications of this? well that remains to be seen, but what we do know is that this huge industry very few people are even aware exists. The industry is in a kind of limbo period where no one really knows where it will go, or what to expect in the future. Although we can be certain that the several high profile cases surrounding this industry will come to a head in the near future.Careelkjlkjyramid

Some experts in the field have argued that by solely focusing on ad blockers buisness model is a red herring for the real topic at hand, which is of coarse how to better serve its users and the relationship to advertisers advertisement and internet security in general. This debate is the result of a larger systemic problem that defines the perimeters of this para dime and our navigation of the internet in general. As the Harvard business school associate Benjamin Edleman writes “You’ve modified our website for your business purposes… You’ve modified it in order to get us to pay you tribute, in order to get us to buy our ads back in. You claim it’s all about protecting consumers from bad ads, but actually you’re perfectly willing to certify our ads so long as we paid you.”

HTML; You Can Do It Too!

Web page design is an industry that will thrive as long as companies see fit to have an internet presence; and that shows no signs of ending right away. Accordingly, people with creative juices and an interest in tech have found very satisfying jobs in this arena. Think web page design might be for you but don’t know anything about it? Here’s a brief overview of what HTML entails.

Wait… What’s HTML? It stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. Web page designers use HTML to instruct web browsers on how to format all the text and pictures of a web page to the designers’ specifications. HTML tags determine everything from headings, font, and text size to where videos and links are located on the web page. If you’d like to see the HTML tags that determine how this page is formatted, simply right click and choose “view source.” There you’ll see all the HTML tags enclosed within < (less than) signs and > (greater than) signs.

html2Don’t worry if it looks confusing; it’s a little time-consuming to learn all the HTML tags at first, but it’s easy to use once you just know what everything means. If you’re ready to get started, you can open up the application on your machine that possesses the least tools; on Windows this is Notepad and on Macintosh the application is called SimpleText.

To convey that you want to begin the web page, write <html> in the first line. To initiate the heading, then write  <head> in the second line. To initiate the text of the title that will make up the heading, write <title> at the next line. Now you can choose whatever title you want. I’ll choose “Eternal sadnes” and then close the title with the command </title>. Back slashes are used in HTML to end formatting categories. The title all together will now look like:

<title>Eternal Sadness</title>

To end the head, I drop to the next line and write </head>. Now I have my titled heading. Next I’ll start with the body by writing <body>. I drop to the next line and write I am always sad and it makes it hard for happy people to want to be friends with me. Then I close the body using </body>. The whole thing looks like this:

<body>

I am always sad and it makes it hard for happy people to want to be friends with me.

</body>

To wrap things up on this little introductory project, I tell the browser that my formatting is finished by writing </html>.

firstIf you save this file in Notepad or SimplyText, you an open it in your web browser. Find a drop down menu and pick the Open File option. Open that sucker up and see how it looks. Pretty cool, huh? That’s the basics of web design, now all you need to do is go out and educate yourself on what HTML tags are out there and how you can best use them. When you’re ready to make a web page of your own accessible on the internet, you’ll have to pay for a web server to carry it.

System 76 Releases Wild Dog Pro

On October 20th, System 76 announced the release of its latest and greatest desktop, the Wild Dog Pro. Wild Dog has a variety of top-of-the-line customizable configurations for the best possible video editing, media creating, software engineering, and computer-aided designing experience available. The device offers high-end processing capabilities for the most demanding games in circulation and was described as “the absolute latest and greatest in hardware innovation” by Carl Richell (who is, admittedly, the president of System76).

Wild Dog is priced at $769 and comes preinstalled with Ubuntu 15.10 (also known as Wily Werewolf), so buyers can expect a cutting-edge operating system to go along with their top-of-the-line hardware.

The default desktop is set to Unity. Users can install other Linux desktop environments and distributions if they so please. Users can choose between a sixth-generation Intel multicore, a multithreaded Core i5 Skylake processor, or the Intel i7 water-cooled 6700K processor. The chipset is Intel H170 Express.

Wild Dog has a dual-channel DDr4 @ 2133 MHz up to 64 GB. In addition, users can opt into either the Intel HD Graphics 530 or an Nvidia graphics card up to GTX 980 with up to 4 GB.

One of the handier accoutrements of the Wild Dog is its possession of a variety of ports and accessory connectors, including front and rear data ports for both USB 3.0 Type-A, USB 2.0 Type-A and USB 3.1 Type-C. The power supply is rated 500W to provide 80 percent or greater power efficiency.

wild dog pro2

Ever trend setting, System76 has become one of the first industry leaders to omit Adobe Flash from its newly remastered software images. The company claims that the absence of Flash is due to some security concerns as well as the fact that Flash is no longer totally necessary for a full internet experience.

The Wild Dog is not designed to be light, small and portable. First and foremost it is meant to be powerful and durable.

“While thin and light computers and all-in-ones are a great fit for some users, they sacrifice performance and storage to achieve their size,” explains Richell. “The wild Dog Pro is designed for creators and engineers that don’t want to make sacrifices. It’s quiet, powerful and beautiful.”

As Richell confirms, the Wild Dog Pro targets engineers, designers and other professionals who appreciate or need high-end technical features and performance.

Charles King, principal analyst of Pund-IT posits, “There are more of those folks than you might think, especially in technically savvy companies that develop their own Linux-based applications and tools in-house.”

“The Wild Dog Pro units sell at a premium,” he continues, “but System76’s ongoing success suggests that there is a sizable audience for thoughtfully and well-designed Linux-based desktop systems.”

Reviewers also love the Skylake processor, which gives them the opportunity to “completely arm themselves with the power needed to accomplish their tasks with brimming confidence.” (System76 again).

The internet is definitely raving- better get out there and check out Wild Dog for yourself!