The eli4d Gazette – Issue 042

Tech Pick

I’ve been using the Firefox browser for a very long time. It embodies the spirit of the Internet in both freedom and privacy. I’m not sure if this can be said of the other mass market browsers.

Mozilla, the non-profit behind Firefox, has come out with a new version of Firefox that is amazingly fast and stable. It is called Firefox Quantum and it’s ridiculously awesome.

So if you’ve grown tired of the slowness of your current browser – give Firefox Quantum a try (and you’ll also get excellent privacy controls too).

Media Pick

I’ve written about Net Neutrality before, and I feel the need to mention “one more thing” (especially since the FCC’s vote is coming up on December 14).

My favorite business podcast, Exponent, had a great discussion about the topic. While I don’t agree with Ben Thompson’s anti-title II position, I do respect his well-thought-out discussion points with James Allworth on the podcast.

Thoughts? Feedback? Let me know: @eli4d on Twitter


The eli4d Gazette – Issue 041

Tech Pick

While I usually range far and wide from politics Net Neutrality is an issue that fundamentally affects everyone’s use of the Internet. Net Neutrality is once again threatened by the current FCC chairman – Ajit Pai. There is much that can be said about Mr. Pai, his attack on Net Neutrality and his motivations.

It seems like the only way this issue will ever be resolved is if Congress passes a law that fully protects Net Neutrality.

Useful links regarding this:

Media Pick

Do you use YouTube Kids? Even if you’ve never heard of this app – what immediately think of when reading about this app? You would probably think that it is safe for kids. However, you would be wrong:

The best one-paragraph summary comes from the above article:

“Algorithms are not a substitute for human intervention, and when it comes to creating a safe environment for children, you need humans,” Mr. Golin said. His group and the Center for Digital Democracy filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission in 2015 accusing YouTube Kids of deceptive marketing to parents based on inappropriate videos.

Thoughts? Feedback? Let me know: @eli4d on Twitter

The eli4d Gazette – Issue 029

Tech Pick

Two topics related to “making the Internet a better place”:

Net Neutrality is at jeopardy once again – please make your voice heard

Net Neutrality is at risk once again. The EFF summarizes the issue best with:

Network neutrality—the idea that Internet service providers (ISPs) should treat all data that travels over their networks fairly, without improper discrimination in favor of particular apps, sites or services—is a principle that must be upheld to protect the future of our open Internet. It’s a principle that’s faced many threats over the years, such as ISPs forging packets to tamper with certain kinds of traffic or slowing down or even outright blocking protocols or applications.

The FCC is seeking to dismantle Net Neutrality, and this is the time to state your objection to this attempt. The EFF has created a very easy form to fill out to comment on the FCC’s proposal.

You can find it here:

The open Internet is critical for our current and future generations. Please take 2 minutes to fill out and submit the above form.

Cloudflare Seems to Help Serve Hate on the Web

I’ve always thought of CloudFlare as a company that is out to make the internet a better place by protecting websites against a variety of attacks. However, I came across a disturbing article about Cloudflare that gives me significant pause (note that ProPublica has had an update regarding this issue, but Cloudflare has not really changed its stance). It seems that Cloudflare is a proxy for both infrastructure security solutions and hate groups.

I have much to say about Cloudflare’s actions and its discounting of both corporate values/responsibility by hiding behind a “we support free speech” flag. But this will have to wait for another (potential) post.

Neither you nor I can control Cloudflare’s actions. If your values align with Cloudflare’s current mode of operation, then Cloudflare should be your go-to company for infrastructure security.

If your values are on the opposite side of Cloudfare’s actions and decisions, then you may choose to:

  1. Recommend alternate technical solutions such as Fastly
  2. Contact Cloudflare’s investors and ask them if their values align with Cloudflare’s actions

I sincerely hope that Cloudflare will make active positive choices regarding its corporate responsibility and values.

Media Pick

I recently finished watching Haven through Netflix. The show is part X-Files and part Supernatural. I had originally chosen it because it had good ratings on Netflix in combination of being a series that had 3 or more seasons. It turned out to have really good character development and sufficient sci-fi/horror elements to keep me watching. Furthermore, the series had a decent closing story arc that tied everything together (and it even had a certain over-acting Star Trek character at the end 😉 ).

I was surprised that Haven was produced by the SyFy channel. I’ve always felt that when this channel changed its name from “Sci Fi” to “SyFy”, it went down hill moving from fantastic scifi shows like Battlestar Galactica to less than exciting works like Ghost Hunters. Of course, SyFy may be coming around to the monetary realization that the original fan base is more valuable than they thought.

Thoughts? Feedback? Let me know: @eli4d on Twitter