Meeting Notes - 12 May 2015

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Meeting Notes - 12 May 2015

Post by bdahm on Sat May 16, 2015 5:34 pm

Chiang Mai Geeks - Notes

No free lunch - We’ve heard this expression time and again. It’s true. It’s equally true here. We don’t charge anything for our meetings, perhaps on the philosophy that you get what you pay for. Be that as it may, the River Market is providing us with a place to meet every week. They are providing us with parking, a projector and a screen and even a sound system for our videos. All they ask in return and all we ask in return is that you purchase something from the menu, even a cup of coffee or a soft drink. Information wants to be free; Food is something else. For those who may have eaten or are not hungry, a tip for the wait staff would be appreciated.

There have been reports from people who come to the Forum and encounter a pop-up or an ad offering to download something. Don’t go for the bait! There is nothing to download to view the Forum. In particular the Ask Toolbar, which hijacks your browser, has been foisted upon unsuspecting visitors. This can be removed by deleting and removing it and another one called lvid from your browser extensions. Most geeks have pop-up blockers like AdBlock Plus or know that one should not respond affirmatively to anything that just pops up on your screen. Often a “system” message pops up to tell you that you have a virus, or offers to clean and speed up your machine. Don’t fall for it! As Steve Gibson, the security guru, says, never download anything you yourself did not seek out. The same thing applies to unsolicited links. Malicious websites are the number one form of malware today. If it’s some dire message, best to go there using one of your bookmarks or doing a Google search. You have to be suspicious of any link that requires you to provide log-in credentials.

Anonymity Makes People Mean
This should come as no surprise, but message board founder David Byttow has learned the hard way. It’s unfortunate, but by not using one’s real name, people act in ways that don’t bring out the best in themselves. There have been trolls around since the beginning of the internet, but today there is a lot of bullying and downright threatening behavior, especially against women. The internet is all about free speech, but through this kind of threatening behavior it actually drives people off of sites and forums of expression and silences free speech, because people are afraid they will be disrespected. The only ones left are the very tough skinned individuals and the Lord of the Flies types. That is not conducive to free speech.

MeerKat and Periscope 
Live streaming got a whole lots easier thanks to MeerKat and Periscope. These two popular apps make it possible to stream events, or non events, live to Twitter followers and others. MeerKat was first out of the gate and garnered a lot of attention. Then Twitter prevented MeerKat from effectively using its social graph and came out with its own live streaming app called Periscope, which also allowed one to keep the stream for 24 hours. This live streaming business got a lot of attention during the recent season debut of Game of Thrones and the championship boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquaio. Apparently lots of people streamed the match using Periscope to their followers and it didn’t help when the CEO of Twitter bragged about it.

Chris has a lot of Twitter followers and is quite familiar with Periscope, so he demonstrated it for us at the last meeting. I was quite surprised that in just a few minutes we had better than 10 viewers, even one in LA. This is all the more amazing because the Chiang Mai Geeks meet on Tuesdays at 1 PM here in Thailand. It turned out to be an eye-opening experience. The transmission quality seemed to be quite good as well.

With that I think we’ll call it a wrap. Catch you all again next week.



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