Your weekly reminder to back up your data, update software and otherwise pay attention to your digital environment. (Oh, and to head to the CRASH Space meeting…)
Zone 3 this week. Permissions are this week’s focus! Getting clear on who has access to your data, and of those that do, who asked for your informed, affirmative consent, and who are the chuckle heads who did not.
Maintaining a focus takes work. I try to only check certain types of news once a week. The practice helps me see that so much doesn’t change. So many new incendiary headlines generated every day tugging eyeballs this way and that. But these headlines just look like herd of shambler zombies when viewed all together. Repetitive, brain eating outrage without any actionable information. Who has the time?
Letting the latest crazy headline jerk you away from your current project only serves the people who want you to fail. And so much on the internet wants you to fail. Wants you to look at some “OMG YOU HAVE TO SEE” article instead keeping your eyes on the prize. And this all ties back to permissions because data aggregators know exactly how to make us jump track because they watch with all the loving attention of a predator.
Changing course needs to be a decision, not a reaction. For me right now I have some topics that I’m choosing to emphasize. I’m kinda all about preserving democracy right now. I hope others are choosing other things. There’s enough work to do to uplift humanity and frankly it’s all connected. Choose whatever, but just choose something and… persist.
Jump in Here
- Welcome. If you haven’t been following along, it’s okay. You’re not behind, you’re just where you are.
- Need a instant pick me up? Jump straight to our Easy Wins.
- There are more recommendations under Start Here.
- Feeling more ambitious? Just wait for the Learn section!
- Check that backup systems are actually running. (more)
- Update main computer(s), phone(s) and tablet(s). (more)
- Clean out and reset wallet/purse/laptop bag/vehicle. (more)
- Wipe down your devices. Physically! <– NEW!
- Spend some time adding passwords to your password manager and updating flagged passwords. (more)
- What neglected inbox will you spend 10 minutes checking today? (more)
This Week’s Focus: Permissions
- Review your standards, move closer to them. (more)
- Spend 10 minutes moving unencrypted data (for example, email) older than ~3 months old to offline archive. (more)
- Change the default setting on a service you use, social media, navigation, search engines etc. (more)
- Spend a few minutes checking your location sharing settings and clear out other location leaking data (more)
- Keep using privacy minded browsers and search engines, clearing cookies and history as needed. (more)
- Check dockets. Call your reps. (more)
- Don’t let apps see your contact book, or spend time moving sensitive contacts into something else. (more)
- When in doubt, remember to use the website, not the App. (more)
News and Updates
Where do you scan for news, include a politics update!
- WIN: People should be able to read the laws they’re meant to uphold!
- Democracy requires free and fair elections. Hacked voting machines don’t provide that.
- Twin articles on BoingBoing talking about data aggregation and it’s effect on swaying public opinion (astro-turfing examples).
- Smart TVs stalk viewers, but at least people are noticing!! (Call your congress person and say that yes you care about companies getting your informed, affirmative consent)
- More from bunnie on the Tarifs, and a link to request an exception
- Default public can be very good (copyleft!!) or bad (financial transactions). Looking at you Venmo.
- The history of grep!!!
- Brutalist Webdesign
- An atom-thick graphene membrane for industrial gas separation – Okay, it’s only about a 1mm square, but better affordable filters could make many recycling and reclamation jobs affordable. Thumbs up.
- 3 things about the ArenaNet debacle:
- ArenaNet’s firings reinforced gaming culture’s worst impulses,
- Example policy for standing with your Devs
- Very long twitter thread about this situation, linked to at a significant point about the difference between actually starting a conversation and pontificating at another person. Helpful because it provides some templates on how to do the former.
We are a community. You are a welcome part of it.
- Did you learn something cool in your sweep? Make something? Share it!
- Speak up
- Like going to conferences? Maybe one is coming up!
- Show up at CRASH Space.
The beauty of electrostatics. Go spiders go!!