Saturday, May 31, 2014

Trust in God, but never remember your Passwords

How many of us actually go out, without carrying our keys where ever we go.
Like do you ever leave it on the door itself?

No? So why do you do it with email account, your facebook account.

And not just on your laptop, but on your iPad and your phone.

Because today, almost every website, has a default setting "Save Password".
If you're going to save your password on any device, you might as well not have a password at all.
It's like that Terminator movie scene, where Arnold arnold Schwarzenegger's character literally picks up a phonebook and has access to all of Linda Hamilton's character, Sarah Connor's data including where her mother stays.

That is the kind of situation we are in today.

Think of the day your mother passes away , in her will she leaves her house to you. And then the next day you find that the keys have been stolen and somebody changed the locks.
How would you feel about that, would it not make you feel lost, especially if you have no home to go to.

That is exactly what it would feel like, if the only email account you used, was suddenly locked to you, and you had no way of getting in.

And this is only the desktop.
Today's mobile is way more complicated, such as Twitter not letting you log out of their mobile website.
Or applications like Whatsapp having no log off button.

You might ask "If I have to remember all my usernames and passwords, how will I remember them".
It's just like keys, if you keep too many keys for everything, then you're going to have a lot of keys to keep in your bag or purse.
The simpler thing to do, is to reduce the number of keys you have.

The next question is, what happens in case you die. Is there a nominee policy like there is in banks, where your account automatically goes to the nominee mentioned by you.
A similar process may be created for websites like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin, where your profile could be turned into an obituary.

Hence, in conclusion, we have to figure out ways to reduce and make simpler, the art of keeping their lives secure.

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Thursday, May 08, 2014

How to get online without getting undressed!

This is not a story about the most internet illiterate person you'll ever meet.
No, rather it's a story about the internet celebrity, making the mistake you'd never make, just because they never worried about getting caught.

But hey, everybody gets caught in the end, whether they be Charles Sobhraj or Carlos the Jackal. But few get to write a story they can sell, about it.

Mark Zuckerberg, the man who created the platform which got everybody exposing everything about themselves, actually gets caught saying a lot of nasty things about how he just wants to win, irrespective of every body else.

Or Evan Spiegel, CEO of arguably the most popular chatting platform around, actually being exposed for the sexist he is. Also that he writes pretty bad emails.

So what does that have to do with you?

Everything, because you're no way half as popular as these guys, or if you are, you're definitely way more savvy to be reading this.

Because looking good online, starts with the most basic of conversation, the email.

And it starts with the most basic of skills, touch typing.

So yes, learn to type in full, rather than think it's cool to write in abbreviations, or by murdering all the vowels in a word. Because if you did that, you'd just backstab yourself or score your own self goal. How embarrassing is that?

So don't , because as someone who has been in different industries will tell you, that the jargon which seems self evident to everyone there, actually has another meaning altogether when you go to another industry. So be clear. I like the way the British simplify everything, like calling ATMs (also known as Asynchronous Transfer Mode in Computer Network terminology) cash machines and SMS as texts.

The simpler you talk or write, the easier it is for people to understand you.

So yes, emails should have a different subject line, summarising what the content is.

And don't use only Capital letters (Also called All Caps) in your emails at all, because it is considered as shouting, and should never be done ever.

When you write, try to maintain a conversation, rather than expect people to treat every word you say as the gospel, which they don't even do it for the priest today.

Talk to people in every day terms, in things which they are used to doing. So yes, first observe, then elucidate.

And write with the thought that one day you might be quoted, out of context. That's the fear I live with everyday I write.

From text to images, don't expect people wanting to actually see you, no they don't want to. What they would really like, is to see things through your eyes, like the way people like to see things through the eyes of JoegoaUk.

And please, if you want to share pictures of your wedding pictures, or your batchelorette party, do it with only your friends. That goes for the every day bar picture as well.

Let's be frank, the reason that you see people in pictures such as on Page 3, are those who really want to be there and expect to be there. Hence they ain't going to be all sozzled out when they get their picture clicked. So if you aren't in your senses, stay away from pictures of any kind.

Don't let people tag you, spend some time reviewing privacy on Facebook , of which there is actually none.

So yes, end of story is, when you go online, it is the same as when you go out.

Put your best foot forward.

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Twitter needs tweaking

The problem with Twitter, is that they still haven't really understood what it is all about.

Twitter as a network is more personal than any other network, because it is more about your true thoughts and feelings.

The biggest screw-up with Twitter is the Direct Messages feature, which has been given step motherly treatment right from the beginning. Currently, it is the most vulnerable part of Twitter, collecting spam and being used to spam visitors.

Friend search, a real mess. Twitter doesn't even have the option whereby you can search within your own friend list.

I miss summise, the search engine which Twitter bought to drive their own Twitter search. That search engine classified tweets my the mood, whether happy or sad. That would come in handy in removing trolls from a conversation.

What needs to happen with Twitter, is the ability to create a garden of thoughts, where seeds planted by someone, are grown by others and then reach a stage of real-world application, if possible.

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Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Teaching people to brand themselves online

So, I've just finished the first workshop on "How to get online, without getting undressed!" which involved a blindfold so participants were under the illusion of privacy, where it didn't exist.
It was interesting that I actually managed to get the kind of response that participants actually felt that they were more in a position of control of their online lives due to this workshop, which for me was immensely satisfying, for if just one participant said that, nothing else mattered.

So far, so good. On to the next one, "Trust in God, but never remember your passwords!"

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