Taking Charge of My Life

Chargers as describedWhen I was a young adult, the only rechargeable battery I had was the one that started my car. We had new fangled wired push button phones, but they didn’t need batteries because they ran off of electricity that came over the phone line. To organize my life, I carried an 8.5″x11″ Franklin planner that I adored. It was about 2 inches thick and weighed a lot but it was awesome. It had my calendar, my contacts and was a great place to take notes too.

I was always fond of the pencils from Pilot, because they wrote so very smoothly on the paper in my Franklin Planner. Nothing was better than the beginning of the calendar year when we would get the new pages all fresh and clean and ready to help me be productive.

I had an SLR camera, the wonderful Minolta X-700. It had a tiny little A76 battery but it ran for years on that one battery. Same thing with my HP 11c calculator (that I still use), three A76 batteries last for ages and ages.

All that has changed.
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NC #551 Amazon Prime Now Miracle, Asus Chromebook Flip, Dell’s Certificate Fiasco

This week was Thanksgiving in the US so I’m going to start out by telling you a story I call “A Thanksgiving Day Miracle”. After that, George from Tulsa joins us to give a review of the Asus Chromebook Flip. He mentions this in his review, but I specifically asked for help this week because I was hanging out with my family instead of working on the podcast most of the week. I also urged George to go long, so he included a bunch of other awesome information. It’s in the style only George can deliver of course. I was going to give you my impressions of the iPad Pro after a few weeks of use (after the gushing had worn off) but I think I’ll hold off on that for a week because Bart joined me in an out of band Security Lite episode to talk about the Dell certificate fiasco. It’s really interesting and really important that we get the knowledge out there about what happened, who should be worried, how worried they should be and most importantly to hear how to fix this very serious problem.


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George From Tulsa Flips Over the Asus Chromebook Flip

Guest Blog Post by George from Tulsa:


Asus Flip Book showing NosillaCast home pageWhat’s the problem to be solved? We hear that a lot from Allison, and for good reason. Right now, I hope I’m a solution, not a problem. Earlier this week Allison posted a request for user submissions so she could have more Holiday this Thanksgiving and less Podcast. Hey, I know my Okie drawl can seem tedious to many of you hard chargers out there. Isn’t that why there’s a fast and faster setting on your podcast player? Problem solved.

My own immediate problem is that when I volunteered to send in this segment, Allison requested it run five minutes, or more. When you’ve heard me before, I tried to use no more than three. Thus my Mission Impossible is to fill five minutes, give you your money’s worth in tech content, and not undermine Allison’s goal that you “Stay Subscribed!”

You know how technology that solves one problem can create another?
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eDellRoot – Dell’s Certificate Fiasco

What Happened:

Dell logo with a red scary line through it

  • This week it emerged that Dell started rolling out an updated version of it’s Dell Foundation Services software (or crapware as I call it) that comes with a root certificate that gets installed into Windows. The certificate shows up in the Windows Certificate Manager as eDellRoot.
  • Initially it was thought it only affected laptops sold since August, then it emerged that it was on Desktops too, and the last shoe to drop was that the cert was also being pushed to people with older Dell computers via updates to the Dell software.
  • This root cert is installed with its ‘PRIVATE’ key, and all computers have certs with the same private key, and the password ‘protecting’ that private key is dell.
  • A second, similar cert was found later in the week also from Dell called DSDTestProvider.
  • Continue reading “eDellRoot – Dell’s Certificate Fiasco”

iPad Pro After a Few Weeks

Ipad familyThe first week the iPad Pro came out, I spoke about it on so many other podcasts, I decided not to talk about it on the NosillaCast. Now that it’s been a few weeks and I’ve had a chance to really use it as my main iPad, I thought I’d give you my impressions from a less gushy, more balanced standpoint. Still with an EVER so slight bias of course but you know what I mean.

It’s important when you read or listen to an opinion on a device to understand which device they were using before they got the new hotness, as I believe that is the most significant thing that influences our opinion.

Before buying the iPad Pro, I had an iPad Air 1, which has the lovely retina display and the smaller bezel and it’s not terribly heavy, and the A7 processor which is quite snappy. I considered buying the iPad Air 2 because I really wanted that touch ID but the cost to move up so soon was more than I could logically justify. Continue reading “iPad Pro After a Few Weeks”

Amazon Prime Now – A Thanksgiving Day Miracle

Amazon prime nowA few years ago the kids got Steve an iGrill for Christmas. This is a gadget-lovers dream. It’s a set of cooking thermometers that communicate over Bluetooth to your phone so you don’t have to hover around the barbecue or oven looking at the thermometers.

Steve is a big barbecuer, and he especially likes the iGrill for cooking his Thanksgiving day turkey. This year he might have gone overboard, buying a THIRTY POUND turkey…for 11 guests. That meant that bird had to get into the barbecue at around 9:30am. Continue reading “Amazon Prime Now – A Thanksgiving Day Miracle”

NC #550 I Love You Man, Will Apple Pencil Make You an Artist, Star Trails with E-M10, Apple Certificate Problems

In Chit Chat Across the Pond #413 Bart is back with a rather short installment of his series Programming By Stealth, this time taking a look at in-line elements for HTML. Download that episode here: podfeet.com/blog/2015/11/ccatp-413. I have a rather mushy discussion of how much the NosillaCastaways mean to me, I ask and answer the question of whether the Apple Pencil will make an artist out of you, and I tell you how I finally succeeded in getting a photo of star trails using the Olympus E-M10’s built in function called Live Composition. In Security Lite Bart sheds some light on what exactly went wrong with Apple’s certificates that caused so much grief for users of the Mac App Store this week.


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I Love You, Man

Claus Allison Steve up by the Hollywood sign overlooking Santa Monica BayThis weekend, long time NosillaCastaway Claus Wolfe from Germany flew from his home in Frankfurt to the United States for a short vacation.

He wrote to us a while back to tell us he’d be passing briefly through Los Angeles and wondered if we could get together. We talked about everything WE thought he might want to see in the area, but he told us he really wanted to do a hike and it looked like there was a nice one up to the Hollywood sign.

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Will the Apple Pencil Make You an Artist?

Ipad pro pencilI was born with a really well developed left brain, the side associated with logic. Science and math came easily to me and it was natural that I went into engineering as a result. My three brothers were also reasonably bright boys, but they were gifted with artsy fartsy skills associated with a well developed right brain. My oldest brother is a musician who reads books on string theory if you can picture that! Alas, I was the only one not musically inclined (even after 6 years of playing the flute and picolo) and with zero artistic talent.

However, like many of you out there, I always wished I could draw and paint. When Apple announced the iPad Pro and the Pencil, I wondered whether I could become an artist?  If I just had the right technology, talent would suddenly exist in me, right?

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