Remove Google From One’s Life

Remove Google From One's LifeWe received this missive about how to remove Google from one’s life from Dax the Duck of Paoli-based DuckDuckGo.

We are going to share it with you.

Remove Google from your life? Yes, it can be done!

Google trackers have been found on 75% of the top million websites. This means they are not only tracking what you search for, they’re also tracking which websites you visit, and using all your data for ads that follow you around the internet. Your personal data can also be subpoenaed by lawyers, including for civil cases like divorce. Google answered over 100,000 such data requests in 2016 alone!

More and more people are also realizing the risk of relying on one company for so many personal services. If you’re joining the ranks of people who’ve decided Google’s data collection has become too invasive, here are some suggestions for replacements with minimal switching cost. Most are free, though even those that are paid are worth it — the cost of not switching is a cost to your personal privacy, and the good news is we have a choice!

 

Google Search -> DuckDuckGo (free)
Let’s start off with the easiest one! Switching to DuckDuckGo not only keeps your searches private but also gives you extra advantages such as our bang shortcuts, handy Instant Answers, and knowing you’re not trapped in a filter bubble.

Gmail, Calendar & Contacts -> FastMail (paid)
We host @duckduckgo.com addresses on FastMail, an independent, paid service that also includes calendar and contacts support across all devices. There are also several ways to get encrypted email between trusted parties by integrating PGP encryption tools. Even more private email alternatives are ProtonMail and Tutanota, both of which offer end-to-end encryption by default.

YouTube -> Vimeo (free with paid options)
For videos that are only on YouTube (unfortunately, a lot), you can search for and watch them on DuckDuckGo for better privacy protection via YouTube’s “youtube-nocookie” domain. If you’re creating and hosting video yourself, however, Vimeo is the best-known alternative which focuses on creators.

Google Maps -> Apple Maps (free), OpenStreetMap (free)
For iOS users, Apple gives you an alternative built in via Apple Maps, so no installation is necessary. For wider device support, check out OpenStreetMap (OSM) which is more open, though may not have the same ease-of-use or coverage quality as Apple Maps.

Google Drive -> Resilio Sync (free with paid options)
Another service we use internally, Resilio Sync, provides peer-to-peer file synchronization which can be used for private file storage, backup, and file sharing. This also means your files are never stored on a single server in the cloud! The software is available for a wide variety of platforms and devices, including servers.

Android -> iOS (paid)
The most popular alternative to Android is of course iOS, which offers easy device encryption and encrypted messaging via iMessage by default. We also have tips to increase privacy protection on your iPhone or iPad.

Google Chrome -> Safari (free), Firefox (free), Brave (free)
Safari was the first major browser to include DuckDuckGo as a built-in private search option. A more cross-device compatible browser is Mozilla’s Firefox, an open source browser with a built-in tracker blocker in private mode. Brave goes one step further with tracker blocking switched on by default. There are also many more browsers that come with DuckDuckGo as a built-in option.

Blogger -> Ghost (paid), WordPress (free with paid options)
Ghost is both a hosted (paid) and self-installable blogging platform, tracker-free by default and run by a non-profit foundation. We like it so much we use it for our own blog! A free alternative is WordPress, powering an estimated 25% of the world’s websites. It’s also available both for self-installation and as a hosted service with no third-party trackers by default. The community is huge with extensive multilingual documentation and many themes to choose from.

Google Hangouts -> Zoom (free with paid options), appear.in (free with paid option)
Zoom is a robust video chat alternative we use internally that works well even for large numbers of participants, though requires software to be installed. A web-only alternative is appear.in which doesn’t require an account — just go to the website to open a chat room and you’re ready.

Google Allo -> Signal (free)
There are several services offering private messaging but, as we’ve mentioned before, Signal gets our recommendation. It offers free, end-to-end encryption for both messages and private calls. It’s also recommended by Edward Snowden and renowned security expert Bruce Schneier, among others.

As you can see, moving away from Google needn’t be hard. In fact, you might find you prefer the alternatives while also getting better privacy!

 

Remove Google From One’s Life

 

Gab Lawsuit Google Standard Oil

Gab Lawsuit Google Standard OilGab Lawsuit Google Standard Oil — Typically ham-handed actions by Silicon Valley progressives has led to a lawsuit in Philadelphia that may shake the world.

Thank God for our enemies one can say.

The suit was filed Thursday (Sept. 14) in the United States District Court of Pennsylvania by Gab.Ai.Inc. Texas-based Gab claims a place of business at 1900 Market St., Philadelphia.

Gab is a social network akin to Twitter. It was removed from Google Play on Aug. 17 with the corporate behemoth citing that convenient catch-all “hate speech by users” as the reason.

Right. Nothing nasty is ever said by users of Alphabet Inc.’s YouTube.

So the “hate speech” accusation gets an LOL. Gab cites a more realistic motive in its suit namely that Gab competes directly with Google at several levels especially regarding its partnership with Twitter.  Hence, Gab is a threat to Google’s near monopoly regarding social news especially on mobile devices.

Gab is accusing Google of violating the Clayton Act and Sherman Act, anti-trust legislation from 1914 and 1890 respectively.

If Gab shows that Google is a trust that should be treated in accordance with these laws, well, consider what happened to Standard Oil.

Gab is easy to sign up for on the desktop and can be found here. 

Gab Lawsuit Google Standard Oil

Google Searches Drop After Damore Firing

Google Searches Drop After Damore Firing — Google searches are way down here.  In late July, 95 percent of searches for stories on this site were via Google and this overwhelming percentage held through early August.

On Aug. 7, Google fired engineer James Damore after his internal memo warning of a poisonously politically correct culture at the corporate giant went public. Along with causing anger at the action’s hypocrisy and injustice, it woke many to the claims that Google was actively seeking to harm websites that didn’t share their political views, something we find easy to believe.

For the next several days, Google continued to dominate. On Aug. 13, however, something unprecedented occurred. More arrived here via other search engines — mostly DuckDuckGo, Bing and Yahoo — than Google.

Google soon regained it’s prime spot but no longer did it overwhelm. Since Aug. 13, only about 57 percent of those finding us were by Google.

Oh, and more are finding us via search engines, strangely enough.

We happily use Paoli Pa.-based DuckDuckGo for our searches. We have no idea what their politics are but we trust them to be fair.

Here is a link to a BusinessInsider interview with Damore which is worth watching.

Google Searches Drop After Damore Firing

Google Searches Drop After Damore Firing

 

Broadband Expansion Requires Net Neutrality Law

Broadband Expansion Requires Net Neutrality Law

By Allie X

The unresolved issue of net neutrality, or how to best ensure a free and open internet, deserves clarification.  The idea that online users can access websites without being blocked unfairly by ISPs (internet service providers) is one that nearly everyone backs.  But policies enacted in the name of net neutrality have caused challenges for internet companies and stymie infrastructure investment.

Though the internet was neutral, open, and expanding, Obama appointee Tom Wheeler over at the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) decided to flip perfectly good policy on its head in 2015 and saddle the internet with public utility regulations taken straight out of the Depression Era. Title II of the Communications Act, created in the 1930s, belabors efforts of internet companies to invest in their networks and innovate products and services for their customers. 

Thankfully, the current FCC is working to take steps to undo the harm and reverse Title II, but we need a long-term solution. 

We need Congress to end this cycle of regulatory chaos that is causing more harm than good to a nation trying to expand its digital networks and online opportunities to more communities. It’s time for pro-consumer legislation that treats all members of the internet ecosystem equally yet enables the internet to evolve and reach even more citizens of PA without heavy regulations.

Broadband Expansion Requires Net Neutrality Law

Broadband Expansion Requires Net Neutrality Law

William Lawrence Sr Omnibit 4-12-17

A curious person in 2012 took over 420,000 routers, uninterrupted power supplies, printers and other internet-enabled devices whose passwords nobody bothers to change from the default to see who used the internet. His probes created a visual mosaic of the World Wide Web. He then quietly deleted his code. His deed is called the Carna Botnet.

He found that of the then 4.3 billion possible IPv4 addresses about 2.3 billion were not used.

As 32-bit IPv4  has been replaced by 128-bit IPv6 — which provides for a lot, lot, lot more addresses, 3.4×1038, to be exact — 2012 is probably the last time such a census was possible.

4.3 billion is 4.3 x 109.

William Lawrence Sr Omnibit 4-12-17 Carna Botnet

Carna Botnet was last time internet census was possible

Best Page In Universe

Best Page Universe Best Page Universe -- Gather children and we will reveal what things were like when the World Wide Web dawnedBest Page Universe — Gather children and we will reveal what things were like when the World Wide Web dawned by providing this link to The Best Page in The Universe.

It hasn’t been updated since 1998 but the links still work.

Yes, that really is how most web pages looked and the incisive commentary on BPitU was really quite common.

Incisive commentary is sarcasm, son.

Maybe someday we will tell you about Usenet.

UPDATE: The Best Page in The Universe has been updated. It even has Facebook links now. Nice to see history appreciated and maintained.

Best Page Universe How The Web Once Looked Like

 

Dave Aho Iconic Computer Geek?

Dave Aho Iconic Computer Geek? — We have been informed that the computer geek of legend whose image has been flying around the World Wide Web since its birth is Dave Aho of New Hampshire.

Here is the article that we ran in April.

Here is the iconic photo:

Iconic Computer Nerd Dave Aho

Here is Dave’s photo from his Facebook page.

Dave Aho

We cannot, obviously, make a definitive determination but at least there is a name to start with.

Dave Aho Iconic Computer Geek?

Brave Web Browser Now Default Here

Brave Web Browser Now Default — We have been experimenting with the Brave web browser for the last two months and have just made it our default replacing Firefox.

Brave is free and open sourced and is based on the Chromium engine.

It is the project of Brendan Eich who, in 2014,  was chased by the self-proclaimed defenders of tolerance from the Mozilla Foundation that he co-founded. Eich had contributed $1,000 to California Proposition 8 that held only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California. That made him a bad man in the eyes of holier-than-thou progressives.

Prop 8 easily won but was deemed unconstitutional by activist judges.

Among the Mozilla products is Firefox.

Anyway, Brave is much faster than Firefox and doesn’t seem to slow to the point where a restart of the program is required as has been our experience with the Fox. It also appears more respectful of privacy than Google Chrome.Brave Web Browser Now Default Here

You can find out more about here and here.

You can download it here. 

Brave Web Browser Now Default

Wikileaks Project Veritas New Journalism

Wikileaks Project Veritas New Journalism — Journalism is giving you facts that you don’t know but should.

The traditional media has long lost its independence and has long-stopped practicing journalism. If there is a fact that you should know but the corporate overlords prefer that you don’t, then you will not learn of it from TV or a daily newspaper. Wikileaks Project Veritas New Journalism

The internet is about the last place left for the trade to be practiced.

Wikileaks revelations that the Clinton campaign is in the pocket of the money people and is collaborating with tame media has rocked the campaign.  Hillary’s damning emails are on the Wikileaks’ website here for the world to see.  No gatekeeper is needed.

Project Veritas’ investigation into election manipulation by felons with strong connections to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton has forced the removal of two shady characters — Scott Foval and Robert Creamer — from the Clinton campaign.

PV’s stories regarding this very real assault on democracy can be found here and here. Before the media became corrupted they would have won Pulitzer Prizes.

You would never have learned of these very relevant-to-your-lives matters from the old media.

Wikileaks Project Veritas New Journalism

Dilbert Shadow Banned Due To Trump Support

Dilbert Shadow Banned Due To Trump Support — Scott Adams, who pens the comic strip Dilbert, is not what one considers a typical right winger. However, he has come out for Donald Trump as many of us have because his opponent is a thief and liar, and because The Donald is not intimidated by political correctness and addresses obvious and consequential realities.

Dilbert Shadow Banned Due To Trump SupportThis exercise of Adam’s political rights has led to repercussions. He his been subject to pointless personal attacks by the self-proclaimed “tolerant and enlightened” but that goes with the territory of expressing an opinion.

More disgraceful and troubling is his “shadow banning” by Twitter. Shadow banning is banning a user from a web forum in such a way that he is unaware of the ban. It is a particularly sneaky and despicable form of censorship.

Adams learned of his banning when his many followers informed him they were not seeing his tweets. The ban has apparently been lifted after protests. That someone in authority at the failing company thought he could get away with it, however, shows why the company is failing.

Censoring political speech is never justice — social or otherwise.

Dilbert Shadow Banned Due To Trump Support