Working in the IT field I often see a common occurrence with businesses and consumers alike. Everyone hears about large companies being hacked or their neighbors computer catching a virus, but often times people do not put as much priority on their computers security as they should. We all hope that it never happens to us, and many people think they are too small to be a target for hackers. The truth is, smaller targets are often easier to attack so instead of spending months trying to penetrate a large corporation or financial institution, hackers will spend far less time attacking many small businesses at once.
I need some advice. VTel has sent around a holiday offer. One level of their service, the lowest, is 2GB of data per month for $10. They say that is equal to about 10 hours of internet usage after which download speed keeps diminishing. They didn’t want to tell me how much it diminishes. They’re answer was, ‘well, that’s when people usually upgrade.” My Fairpoint deal is $15/month, at a slow speed (750 kb/sec), but I can spend 100 hours a month on the net and notice nothing in terms of speed diminishing. In fact it seems that I can spend 24 hours a day on the net, or streaming, and the speed seems the same on the last day of the month as it was on the first.
In a quest for profit and automation, big tech companies are making mistakes that matter to people using their services. Some are small and annoying; others are more significant.
Turn on the Weather Channel in Brattleboro and you’ll be welcomed to Putney. Yes, Putney. The Weather Channel made a switch a year or so ago and decided that the big city in our region, right up there with Albany and Burlington, is Putney.
LinkedIn makes sure to tell everyone that employees in Brattleboro work in the Springfield area. Springfield, MA, that is. So helpful!
I saw this , and perhaps, challenigng old conceptions of peak -oil.
There are many ways to be snookered, manipulated, tricked and even bullied into becoming a victim on the internet, as well as through regular mail, phone, etc. People tricking others into doing things against their better interests is not a new phenomenon, but the ways that can happen has changed in recent times. It helps us all to have us all be more aware, more informed, and more skeptical of seemingly innocent inquiries.
Time for another random robot round-up, in which we take another snapshot of the progress of our future friends and overlords.
Each of the following is a specific robot in development, but that’s not the best way to think about these things. It’s better to think of each of these studies as part of a greater whole. That is, anything one of them can do now, all can potentially be capable of in the future. Keep that in mind as you read about monkey-controlled robot armies, flaming ping pong balls, and soft micro robots.
For those who ignore social media, you can ignore this.
For the rest of you, I have a word about laziness. Yes, I’m talking to you, person who has your Facebook feed set to automatically retweet things.
Here is the situation. Twitter allows for 140 characters. It is an art and science to craft messages that fit the space and make sense. Much can be communicated in a good tweet.
The Brattleboro Area Tech networking group will meet on July 21 at 6:00 when it holds its first Business Pitch Practice Session. The meeting will be at the Marlboro Grad Center in Brattleboro..
The event will provide an informal setting where would-be entrepreneurs can present technology-oriented business ideas to a sympathetic audience. Each presenter will be given 5 minutes to make a presentation, followed by a short question and answer.
This one is specifically for technology entrepreneurs. Presenters from all stages of business development are encouraged to attend and participate, from those with only a concept to those who are out actively raising money to fund their startup.
If you use Firefox and you get a webpage that URGENTLY tells you to download it, DON’T DO IT!. It’s malware.
It was patented in 1947 by the Rockefeller Foundation:
Conspiracy theories will abound!
Couple of Interesting maps for map and big data lovers:
First up is a visualization of how people commute. Go to and set the state and county to Vermont and Windham. You’ll see dots start flying around on the map. You can zoom in, slow things down or speed them up, and adjust the perimeter you are using.
What you’ll see is an animated graphic of showing people going to work and returning home. You’ll also see that the stories of Brattleboro being the hub for Windham County are true, with a rather dramatic shift of people in neighboring towns coming in to Brattleboro to work.
When you are done, go look at a big metropolitan area, such as NY, Boston, or DC.
Learn how you can cut energy costs in your home or business by 50% to 100% while taking advantage of up to $7,500 in incentives.
Zero Energy Now is a new, comprehensive energy improvement program, providing efficiency upgrades to your building along with renewable heating (such as heat pumps and biomass), and solar photovoltaics. You can move your home or business toward using zero energy at little or no monthly cost, with energy savings paying for financing. By doing so, you will increase your comfort, cut your carbon emissions, and eventually have virtually no energy costs at all! As an added bonus, up to $7,500 in incentives are available to program participants located in former Central Vermont Public Service (CVPS) territory.
I am prudent enough to protect myself, and sensible enough not to be shamed out of it by scornful mockery.
At times, ignorant people and paid provocateurs make fun of tin hats. In fact tin hats are obsolete technology — no one talks about them any more — other than to smear those of us who have the good sense to protect ourselves from EMFs, and other electromagnetic dangers.
Discover how you can observe and monitor the environment in your own backyard!
Almost anyone can be a scientist and help protect our planet – even in their own backyards. Whether someone’s passion is watching hawks, catching butterflies, chasing bugs, or even taking photographs, a workshop Saturday, April 9, in Brattleboro will offer individuals a chance to become a citizen scientist and make a difference in protecting the environment.
The US Environmental Protection Agency and more than a dozen community organizations –governmental and non-profit – will hold a 3-hour workshop showcasing opportunities to get involved with nature and the environment beginning at 9:30 am at the River Garden, 157 Main Street, Brattleboro.
Time once again to check in with our eventual robot overlords and how they are evolving.
This is prompted by news that Google is hoping to sell off Boston Dynamics, the folks that are building some of the most advanced and scary robots on the planet. Seems that the latest generation have the potential for generating bad press, there are no sellable products in sight, and Google wants to walk away.
Here’s Atlas, one of the more recent human-sized Boston Dynamics creations, walking about, trying to do things, and being abused by technicians. As a commenter pointed out, there will come a time when AI-aware robots will find this video and think about it.
The March Brattleboro Area Tech group meeting will be on March 17th, from 5:30 to 7:00 pm, at the River Garden, 157 Main St. Brattleboro, VT. And yes, we’ll get to see the newly remodeled River Garden basement.
This month’s guest is Paul Silva of Valley Venture Mentors who will give a brief talk about free resources to help you build a scalable startup, with plenty of time for questions.
Anyone working with or interested in technology in the Brattleboro area is welcome to attend.
Thumb drives and USB sticks are very common. Almost none of them have a space available to write on.
Thought for the morning: Want to invent something and make some money? Develop a USB drive that has a space for a label, so we can write a note about what’s on it. Make it so we can change labels, too, if the contents of the drive change.
What new business ideas might emerge if a group of local farm and food entrepreneurs explored ideas with a group of local technology experts?
That’s what Strolling of the Heifers and the Brattleboro Area Tech group intend to find out at “Tech Salad,” a farm-food-tech business workshop on March 3 at 5:30 p.m. at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden. The goal is of the workshop is to explore opportunities for ways in which these sectors can collaborate and solve problems, including new methods, new markets, new products, and potentially whole new businesses.
Tech Salad is the first of several such workshops planned by Strolling of the Heifers to connect farm and food entrepreneurs with members of various other sectors, as the first phase of Windham Grows, a new Stroll program designed to help launch and grow businesses in the Windham County farm and food sector.
The FBI wants to get inside an iPhone. The owner of the phone was killed in a hail of bullets. Having killed the person with the passcode to the phone, they then instructed the dead person’s employer to try to change the passcode. In doing so, the employer made it more difficult for the FBI to accomplish its goal.
The FBI gets a friendly judge to write an order to the Apple corporation, telling them they must write code to help the FBI break into iPhones. To do so, Apple would need to compromise its security for all customers using the product for legitimate, useful purposes, such as secure banking and communications.
There is certainly a discussion to be had about privacy and security underway, but we might also do well to consider the First Amendment.
Michael Knapp, CEO of successful Brattleboro computer firm, Green River, will speak at the February 18 meeting of Brattleboro Area Tech. The meeting will take place at 5:30 pm and is hosted by Green River in its offices at 167 Main Street, Suite 103, in Brattleboro.
Green River builds software for sustainability, environmental protection, school improvement, and public health and is thought to be the largest IT development firm in southeastern Vermont..
Michael will speak about the work of Green River, its choice of technologies and his experience running an IT company in Vermont.