The Encryption Debate: another point of view

We’ve all seen it plastered on the national news these last two years. The encryption debate between tech companies and civilians wanting to keep their data private is being weighed against the government’s desire to gain access to anything and everything they can in the hunt to stop terrorists.  Anyone besides me ever notice it’s always “terrorists,” not just criminals? Anyway, the thought occurred to me late last night to look at the argument another way and see what I’d feel about it. It’s not a hard decision for me, personally. I’m firmly ensconced on the side of a person’s right to privacy over some government’s desire to monitor its citizens. Still, maybe it’s worth trying to have the conversation another way. Let’s take the technology out of it and consider the idea as it would relate to the rights of privacy of the individual. The government argues that the … Read the rest…

Life After the Equifax Breach

  This is gonna be a long one. No, seriously, go get a bag of chips or something before you commit to this. There is a lot of information here and I don’t want you to be jumping all over the web to find links to stuff so I’m just going to put it all here in one place. Feel free to get halfway through and take a nap. I did! State of the Union – Where we are now. We’re living in an age that’s different than any time in human history. Techincally that’s always true, no matter what time in history you say it, but hopefully you’ll get my meaning if you keep readong. The reasons I’m going to focus on today are mostly related to technology. One very important factor of technology affects all of us in a way we might not have anticipated. This past few … Read the rest…

It only took seven years

So, yesterday made it real. All the planning and ticket-purchasing and preparation were exciting at moments and frustrating at others, but it wasn’t actually “real” to me yet.   Yesterday I walked into the bank and completely drained my “honeymoon savings” account.  I’d been putting money into that account for the last five years. Sometimes I’d put in some one month and have to pull some back the next to handle a bill or company expense or tax payment or something of the like. These last two years I’ve been more diligent about leaving it there and trying to forget it exists. That worked pretty well overall. But honestly it just felt good to finally be able to go in there and take it all out and know I was finally going to use it for what I’d wanted to use it on since the day I opened the account. … Read the rest…

Stanly County Board of Commissioners August Meeting – Consolidation Discussion

Some of you have been following the issue the Stanly County board of commissioners has been tossing around regarding the possible merging of the Board of Health and the Social Services Board. I wrote an article in anticipation of the August 7th hearing, which you can read here if you’d like. I had the pleasure of speaking at that meeting and being given the opportunity to express my thoughts about the merger. I thought it was time to write a follow-up article and reveal a little more than I did previously. I’ve held off writing the article or any follow-up pieces before now out of respect for the candor the commissioners showed me when speaking to me privately when I called them. I won’t mention any names here in regards to any conversations I had with commissioners because I would like to preserve the opportunity to engage them in future … Read the rest…

Equality between Men and Women -my perspective on the Google Memo

You may have heard of the memo published by former- Google employee, James Damore titled “Google’s Idealogical Echo Chamber” wherein he discusses, quite candidly, the discrepancies that exist between women and men in tech jobs and lists the anthropological and psychological reasons those differences exists. If you haven’t read the memo, I encourage you to read it here: https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3914586/Googles-Ideological-Echo-Chamber.pdf A few days following publication of the document, Jamed Damore was fired from Google. I can’t speak as to whether I’d personally have made that decision, but I can certainly understand why a global corporation couldn’t have their name associated with the opinion piece and needed to distance themselves from it. Personally, I think the paper was spot on, but I also think maybe I’d have have fired him too if I’d been his boss. Moving on; the paper discusses a lot of ways men and women in the workforce, specifically … Read the rest…

Stanly County Emergency Services – Triage Day

Today was an interesting day I thought worth sharing with you folks from the ether. Just one more glimpse into what goes on in some other people’s lives you might find interesting.I made a Facebook post about it earlier and some of you were interested in the subject, so why not take a few minutes and write it up in a post? I am a member of an organization called ARES. That’s an acronym for Amateur Radio Emergency Services. Sounds conflicting, right? Which is it? It is a bunch of amateurs or does it have something to do with emergency services? Well, the answer is “yes.” lol ARES members and Auxcomm members are volunteer HAM radio operators with their own equipment and radio gear who have taken the time on their own to get trained and certified by the FCC in how to work with the incident command system. The … Read the rest…

Adventure and Hardship

I heard something tonight that resonated with me. “Adventure is just hardship with an inflated sense of self.” I’ve spent the last three days constantly going over the topography, language barriers, cultural challenges, work-ethic challenges, and even the challenges of simple day-to-day living in Nepal. Yes, Nepal. Don’t hurt yourself. I’ll get there in a minute. Some moments my head is full of wonder at the idea of the personal challenges. Other moments it’s full of me trying to remind myself what a hell-hole the third-world can be if you’re used to your western amenities and have to do without them for a few years. One of my clients, from time-to-time, does what other vendors do with our market; they roll us up into their own solution for an in-house out-sourced solution to solve problems. Huge construction companies have contractors galore, electricians, teams of electrical engineers and soil analysts, project … Read the rest…

Amazon – Friend or Foe in Food?

Author’s Note: This article has been significantly expanded upon since originally written. I haven’t changed any pre-existing content, but have added author’s notes at the end for the sake of those that want to read the new material without having to re-read the entire article. So that’s interesting news huh? Let me guess, you probably didn’t know that Amazon just decided to go whole-hog (that’s “all the way” for you Yanks) into the meal kit market, did you? I see you’ve got that blank stare. What’s a meal-kit?  Ok, back up and let’s catch you up to 2017. We live in a busy world, an incredibly busy world. To keep pace and keep on top, whether for better or for worse, people are changing the way they do things. Meal kits are a good example. Say you want to be a good cook, but don’t have the experience? Or let’s … Read the rest…

In search of a story

For the last three years I’ve been wanting to write. The search for a good plot to wrap the reader’s mind around really proves the old adage true – there is indeed nothing new under the sun. Regardless of the hooks I want to use, they’re already taken and for the most part they’ve been done very well. I’ll give you an example of what I mean. The genre I think I’d most enjoy writing would today be called post-apocalyptic fiction, or prepper-porn depending on whom you read. Something happens to change the way the world works in a fundamental way and the characters either struggle to adapt to the new world as it has become or they hunker down to survive some sort of short-term hardship with the hope that life will eventually return to normal, they will be able to watch Game of Thrones again on HBO, and … Read the rest…

Stanly County Board of Commissioners Proposes Change – Why?

I hate writing an article without having all the facts, but this is one of those times I’m having a hard time actually gleaning all the facts together in one place, so putting together what I know, what I’ve heard, and asking for others to help fill in the blanks might be helpful. Credit where it is due Before I begin telling this story in it’s entirety, I feel the need to mention that almost 100% of the research and information I’m going to share with you was NOT performed by yours truly. This only came into my hands 48 hours ago and I’m having to rely on the research of those before me. The research and writings of Aimee Wall and the North Carolina General Assembly website are the only two sources I have to go on. Aimee Wall has been a member of the UNC School of Government … Read the rest…