Power of Free WiFi has thousands signing up for 1,000 hrs of community service

Free WiFi has a power over people who want to be connected. As a joke  Purple wifi got 22,000 people to sign up for free wifi in exchange for 1,000 hrs of community service. 

  •   Do you read the terms and conditions? Probably not. No one does. And so, inevitably, 22,000 people have now found themselves legally bound to 1000 hours of community service, including, but not limited to, cleaning toilets at festivals, scraping chewing gum off the streets and “manually relieving sewer blockages”.


  • The (hopefully) joke clause was inserted in the terms and conditions of Manchester-based wifi company Purple for a period of two weeks, “to illustrate the lack of consumer awareness of what they are signing up to when they access free wifi”. The company operates wifi hotspots for a number of brands, including Legoland, Outback Steakhouse and Pizza Express.

Free WiFi has an amazing expectation. Are you thinking about it? 

E-mail is permanent, therefore others can read, Sony Hack reminds non-technical crowd

One lesson learned from Microsoft's Monopoly trials is what you write in e-mail can haunt you.  This lesson has been repeated through multiple trials and discoveries.  I always write in a style that my e-mails could get to a broader audience than just the addressed.

Sony's hack has revealed how executives haven't learned this lesson that most of my technology friends know.

Bonnie Hill, a director of Yum Brands Inc. and California Water Service Group , echoed that point, saying the attack on Sony got everyone’s attention and is a reminder “that you don’t use your email for general, chatty conversations.’’ She said she expects boards to start asking more questions about what kind of information is being kept and how safe it is.

“A sufficiently skilled, motivated and funded attacker will get in, period,” Co3’s Mr. Schneier said. Companies must continually improve security with layers of defense that include intrusion prevention, detection and incident response, he said.

“This is going to take years to unwrap,” Mr. Schneier added. “Now every company is thinking, ‘What would it be like if everything in our company was made public?’ ”
— http://www.wsj.com/articles/fears-spread-of-sony-style-hack-1418863212?mod=WSJ_hp_LEFTTopStories

Whenever I have something extremely confidential to discuss I reach for the phone or switch to other means of communication, but not e-mail.  Using something like encrypted iMessage is an option.

We take a very different view of this than a lot of other companies have. Our view is, when we design a new service, we try not to collect data. So we’re not reading your email. We’re not reading your iMessage. If the government laid a subpoena to get iMessages, we can’t provide it. It’s encrypted and we don’t have a key. And so it’s sort of, the door is closed. But our business Charlie, is based on selling these [pointing to devices]. Our business is not based on having information about you. You’re not our product. Our product are these, and this watch, and Macs and so forth. And so we run a very different company. I think everyone has to ask, how do companies make their money? Follow the money. And if they’re making money mainly by collecting gobs of personal data, I think you have a right to be worried. And you should really understand what’s happening to that data. And companies I think should be very transparent about it.
— Tim Cook

Developing your Data Center Relationships - Chinese Guanxi

Relationships is a complex topic.  Some think it is about exchanging business cards, LinkedIn connections, and business dinners.  But, I think what so many miss is are your friends in the data center industry.  Do you have laughs, share perspectives, and talk about things outside the data center industry.  Are you social?  Do you have Guanxi?

BBC has an article that explains an application of Guanxi that I think many will find familiar.

He points out that the Chinese generally tend to be less private and socialise more with their colleagues than their Western counterparts, and doing deals this way is a natural extension of that.
Yet guanxi’s roots are tightly bound in history, with the notions of obligation and loyalty going back thousands of years.
— http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29524701

A Scenario where the Cloud is not an Option, Private Communication beyond Control of Those who Want to Spy on You

One of the parts of using those free cloud apps is those who run the service can spy on you and even cut you off.  This has occurred with the Hong Kong protesters and their choice of using Firechat which allows communication to others without internet access.


Hong Kong protestors use FireChat to text without cell service 

Hong Kong protestors are using FireChar, a mobile messaging app, to communicate without using cellular or Internet service. Pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong downloaded the app 100,000 times in just one day.

By Bryan Cronan, Staff Writer OCTOBER 1, 2014

What do the protests in Hong Kong and the festival Burning Man have in common? FireChat.

Protestors in Hong Kong are using the messaging app FireChat to communicate without using cellular or Internet service. 

Venturebeat has a guest post suggesting there will be more services that skip the cloud to support those who want to be private.


In 2015, popular online social networks will be reduced to serving for social branding, and a next generation of apps using peer-to-peer networking instead of cloud computing will be used for texting and image and video sharing.

The exodus from popular social networks will be accelerated by increasing revelations of both the storing and monitoring of personal communications by the government, and experimentation on users of social networks for the financial benefit of third parties. The exodus, like most all technological trends, will be led by the young and the tech-savvy, and the rest of the worlds’ users will slowly follow as technology inevitably spreads.

  • Vincent Yu/AP
    View Caption

What do the protests in Hong Kong and the festival Burning Man have in common? FireChat.

Protestors in Hong Kong are using the messaging app FireChat to communicate without using cellular or Internet service. 

Hiding Your Moves on the Internet by acting like a Criminal is not Effective

The Guardian has a post on Janet Vertisi’s efforts to hide her pregnancy on the internet. 

Attempts to stay anonymous on the web will only put the NSA on your trail

The sobering story of Janet Vertesi's attempts to conceal her pregnancy from the forces of online marketers shows just how Kafkaesque the internet has become

The bit of irony is The Guardian hid the origin of the presentation Janet made which is here on Mashable.

How One Woman Hid Her Pregnancy From Big Data

For the past nine months, Janet Vertesi, assistant professor of sociology at Princeton University, tried to hide from the Internet the fact that she's pregnant — and it wasn't easy.

Pregnant women are incredibly valuable to marketers. For example, if a woman decides between Huggies and Pampers diapers, that's a valuable, long-term decision that establishes a consumption pattern. According to Vertesi, the average person's marketing data is worth 10 cents; a pregnant woman's data skyrockets to $1.50. And once targeted advertising finds a pregnant woman, it won't let up.

The part that had me laughing is when she figured out her process of being invisible made her more visible as a potential criminal.

Genius, right? But not exactly foolproof. Vertesi said that by dodging advertising and traditional forms of consumerism, her activity raised a lot of red flags. When her husband tried to buy $500 worth of Amazon gift cards with cash in order to get a stroller, a notice at the Rite Aid counter said the company had a legal obligation to report excessive transactions to the authorities.

"Those kinds of activities, when you take them in the aggregate ... are exactly the kinds of things that tag you as likely engaging in criminal activity, as opposed to just having a baby," she said.

What Janet was doing in her efforts to hide her pregnancy and her purchasing behavior, is she was doing the same things a criminal does to hide their activity.  If you want to hide, then blend into a crowd like camouflage.

Background matching is perhaps the most common camouflage tactic. In background matching, a speciesconceals itself by resembling its surroundings in coloration, form, or movement. In its simplest form, animals such as deer and squirrels resemble the “earth tones” of their surroundings. Fish such as flounder almost exactly match their speckled seafloor habitats.