There’s Still Moisture in South Texas

Dropped WAN packets like crazy.  Called Spectrum.  Took two technicians to figure out the line between the outside box and my Arris modem was bad.  I moved it to a backup location (a better RG-59 cable) and problem solved.

Meanwhile I’m wondering what caused the original cable to go bad.  Then I recall that some years ago I had to cut it and put two ends on it and a female-female connector.  I’m sure the connection steadily degraded over the years and caused noise.  Remember kids, always use pre-made cables wherever possible.

Losing Hope

Honestly there is not much hope left in technology for me anymore.  With Microsoft releasing “beta” (my word) software but calling it ready for prime-time and charging you like it when all the features are clearly missing in one product.  Meanwhile, I have to uninstall my Bluetooth driver software just to use Remote Desktop Connection again.  Google is releasing “Wellbeing” software for Android to help you use your phone less (sounds familiar? it’s called the tobacco industry).  Ford doesn’t make cars anymore.  Facebook is as trustworthy as a homeless man on the street (no offense to the homeless population intended).  What can I put my hope in?  Anything?

My Phone

My phone has a Snapdragon 835, has 4 GB of RAM, and 128 GB of non-expandable storage. My phone has two 13 MP cameras on the rear (one is black and white only for those art shots) and one 8 MP camera on the front. My phone has a 5.7 inch screen, edge to edge and not curved at 508 PPI. My phone comes in 4 colors and is made out of ceramic and titanium for ultimate durability. My phone has a 3040 mAh non-removable battery that quick charges extremely fast. My phone is unlocked and works on all carriers in the United States. My phone was designed and assembled in the United States. My phone carries no branding because it is my phone, not the manufacturers.

My phone cost $500 for me and you.

I am very happy with my phone. You would be too.

Cat vs. Mouse | Mouse Gets New Weapon

I’ve been using AdBlock for a few years now.  There are many clones so let’s be specific:  Accept no substitutes.

For the most part, it works great.  However, the “cat” in this battle (websites and advertisers) can detect when you use AdBlock and may choose to either give you a nag screen (please help us pay for our site) or deny you access entirely unless you whitelist the site.

Which brings me to Pi-hole.  This service runs on any Linux distro, and the most popular method is to use a Raspberry Pi, hence the name.  However I chose to use Ubuntu Server as a virtual guest on VMware.

Installation was extremely simple if you follow their website.  Once installed, you can change the default password by running the command on your Linux command line:

pihole -a -p

Once Pi-hole is running, change the DNS of your DHCP server to resolve to the Pi-hole device (or virtual guest).  That’s it.