Tuesday Sweep: 3 July 2018
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…)
I’ll admit, musings on authority theory line up thematically better with Zone 3 (“Permissions”) rather than Zone 1 (“Connectivity”), but today (or tomorrow) would be a great day to read the Declaration of Independence, highlighting that “consent of the governed” phrase. Although that concept didn’t come from a vacuum, it still represents a big departure from the divine right of kings. I tried to track down good essays available without a paywall online, but, wow, mostly a bunch of complete nutters. That’s so tragic! The closest I can come up with in terms of quality reading is this entry on Political Legitimacy from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Also a 2012 talk by A. John Simmons called “Democratic Authority and the Boundary Problem” at Harvard’s Kennedy School provides a nice survey of modern thought, regardless on whether or not you agree with his conclusions. It’s a long, graduate-level talk, but worth the effort.
Have a wonderful 4th of July, all. It’s okay to celebrate the good parts. It’s how we stand up to the bad.
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)
- 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:
Zone 01: Connectivity
- Any new ISP choices available to you? Hassled your elected officials lately about that? Have fun researching alternatives! (more)
- If you’ve rolled your own VPN, update it. (more)
- Reboot your router. (more)
- Double check firewall settings (more)
- Update antivirus software (more)
- Make sure HTTPs everywhere is fully enabled. (more)
- If applicable, re-image sacrificial devices (more)
- Spend a little time learning how the internet works. (more)
News and Updates
Where do you scan for news, include a politics update!
- When you have C student writing policy you end up with ridiculousness like tariffs on components. It’s worth a nag to to your national officials if you don’t already have them on speed dial this week.
- Tech companies are ALREADY going after that privacy law that got passed last week. Call your state officials! After all, even MIT is on the Down with Data Baron‘s band wagon.
- There are plenty of real threats out there. We don’t have to make new ones just to keep our stimulus level high. It’s okay to take a moment to feel good about imperfect improvements.
- LTE has some unfixable flaws if you don’t enforce HTTPs connections. Time to ask the ITU to make sure that “the 5G specification [is]revised to make integrity assurance mandatory.” The flaw is currently expensive to exploit, btw. I just bring it up b/c it’s technically interesting and another excuse to encourage HTTPS.
- For victims of smart home abuse, there’s no easy out
- Patch Windows, patch Adobe PDF readers.
- Game Theory and BitTorrent
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.
After the fireworks, maybe think about how to watch some of the fireworks there in the universe for us every night. Collect some ideas for summer night star gazing and maybe a park pass to go somewhere to really see them! Even if you can’t get outside, check out this gallery of images from the Hubble Telescope.