Your NFL Champions, the New England Patriots, have long had one of the worst looking Web sites in the entire National Football League. Finally, their newly redesigned site makes it debut and is a major improvement from the old design (while still not perfect).
Fresh off my brother getting a hoax eBay e-mail, I too have received one, though this one read somewhat differently. The subject is "Unable to verify or authenticate your credit/debit card information on file..." and says that it comes from email@example.com. The e-mail goes on to say that my credit card doesn't appear to be valid and that I must go to the URL included in the e-mail to re-enter. This e-mail uses the same trick of displaying a valid eBay Web address that is actually linked to a thief's domain (in this case, www.ebayfees.com).
As I read the e-mail, I was struck by the humor of it all. Nowhere on the e-mail does it say my eBay username (the greating says, "Hello eBay User, place or change your account information on file"), and it has this meaningless piece of text: "you have been pre-indefinitely suspended from eBay". Pre-indefinitely suspended? What the hell does that mean?
Once again, the biggest thing indicating that this was a hoax, next to the forged Web address, was the incorrect grammar. Simple things like:
- "credit cards information incorrect" (should be "credit card's information is incorrect").
- "you must have a valid account information on file" (should be either "you must have a valid account on file" or "you must have valid account information on file").
- "Please update information in your eBay account now by click here and entering the new information yourself in your account" (should be "...now by clicking here and entering the new information ").
The bottom line: pay attention to your high school grammar lessons, they could save your identity.
I finally had some free time and decided to finish up my personal blog app to include both comments and an RSS feed. I've wanted to do both for a while now, but just haven't had the time. But tonight was the night!
Coming soon: categories for the blog postings and seperate RSS feeds for each category.
AOL has announced a system to add additional security to AOL accounts. The system involves a small device that generates a different numeric code every 60 seconds, which must be entered along with the username and password to login. AOL says that even if someone gets your password, it's useless without the extra code.
Personally, that's the dumbest idea they've had in a long time. The victims of phishing, where hackers trick people into giving them their password, are typically not very technologically inclined, and will not want yet another thing to figure out. Geeks who think it's a cool idea still won't sign up for AOL, because they have high-speed Internet access and AOL is generally regarded by them as a "baby" ISP. So who does this new technology appeal to, especially at $9.95 for the device and $1.95 a month on top of the regular AOL charges?
Well, my New England Patriots have made it 17 in a row: 17 straight regular- and post-season wins. The record is, of course, 18, and the Pats have a good chance to break it as their next two opponents are the Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins. Either of those teams would love to play spoiler in the race to the record, but I just don't think either has the ability to do it.
The Patriots are off next week (blasted bye week), but will return the following week to play the Bills, who are now 0-2 and could very well be 0-3 by the time they meet the Pats. You really have to feel bad for the Buffalo fans and for Drew Bledsoe.
On the other hand, the almighty Chiefs are also 0-2 right now, despite having what I consider to be the best running back in football, Priest Holmes. Their offense hasn't been nearly as explosive as last year's, and their defense is once again non-existent, but could they really start out 0-3?
I was talking with some guys at lunch today and one of them brought up that he tried to scan a dollar into Adobe Photoshop CS and got an error message. Wondering if it was true, I went to the Web and found this article at News.com. Apparently, the new version of Adobe Photoshop doesn't allow you to scan currency. When you attempt to scan a US dollar bill (or a few other European currencies), you get an error message saying that Photoshop will not work with duplicates of currency. The program then points you to the Rules For Use Web site, which lists out various country rules for reproducing currency. The link for the US goes to a page on the Secret Service Web site detailing the legitimate use of currency reproductions.
The rules are pretty simple. Basically the reproduction must be less than 75% or greater than 150% the size of an actual dollar bill. Also, The reproduction may only be one-sided. Pretty easy to follow, and lots of people make fake dollar bills with someone else's face on it as props and/or jokes. However, Photoshop now won't even let you do this.
This means that Photoshop is essentially interpreting all images scanned into it and censoring them based on a given pattern (in this case, currency). Is it really up to Adobe to censor our use of images? What's next? Maybe you shouldn't be allowed to scan in a picture of a singer or actress without permission! Thumbs down to Adobe for this ridiculous move.
Update I just found this article at Wired.com explaining how people have gotten around the currency detection feature. I agree with the article, if it's really that easy to break through, why even bother?
As I'm typing this, it's 11:37 AM, and I am waiting for a contractor to show up and install my new thermostat and air filter (which should have been installed three weeks ago, but that's another rant). I was told someone would be here before noon, now what are the chances that will happen?
This is absolutely ridiculous. So I'm sitting here, away from job, waiting for this phantom contractor to show up...exactly like I was three weeks ago when I got my heat pump installed. Why can't they just let you know a time when they think they'll arrive, and then call if they're going to be late?
The Patriots rush defense left much to be desired, especially in the first half, but the Patriots offense was firing on all cylinders and provided enough points to outscore the oft-celebrated Peyton Manning by a final score of 27-24.
All I can say is thank God. I get so tired of hearing how great Manning and the Colts are, with everyone automatically handing Manning the league MVP and, if they could, the Super Bowl title as well. Tom Brady proved last night that he is the better quarterback, and the Patriots provide that they are the better team. Watch out NFL, here comes the next dynasty.
I talked at length about the problem with USA Basketball a little earlier, now it finally seems that they realize it too. According to a story at ESPN.com, USA Basketball is working with the NBA to determine a new method of player selection.
The two ideas talked about are setting up a tryout system and just sending the NBA champions. Sending the NBA champs does have problems, such as free agency and the foreign players that the champs would lose. So, the most likely outcome would be a tryout system where USA Basketball invites NBA players, college players, and Americans playing overseas to all try out for the team with the intent of keeping the team together for both the qualifying tournaments and the next championship (whether that be the World Championship or the Olympics). Finally, some sanity!
I came across this story today on News.com and couldn't help but shake my head. I am all about free speech and believe that people should blog about whatever they want to blog about...only everyone needs to realize that a blog isn't like your diary that you put under your mattress so no one finds it nor is it like a conversation you have at dinner with your beloved. It's out there, just waiting for anyone with enough time and an Internet connection.
The woman in question here, who runs a blog called Troutgirl didn't do anything wrong in the literal sense; she simply shared some information about why the company switched from running JSP to PHP. However, that alone was foolish.
You will never find me blogging about my work, my company, my boss, or my co-workers, because it just isn't professional and furthermore, it could get me fired if I typed something that was misinterpreted (or interpreted correctly). Anyone working for someone else needs to understand that you cannot just say whatever you want publicly, whether the company is traded on the stock market or not. Most employees are employees at will, meaning that either the employee or the employer can terminate employment at any time for any reason, so for goodness sakes, don't give them a reason.