An odd thing on Facebook

A few years ago, I went on a kick of enfriending basically everyone that I knew from my home town in Alaska and I ended up with one friend who was one of the little kids in my church growing up. Of course, he grew up and was apparently gay and had issues with depression.

Sometime earlier this year, he ended up committing suicide.

That means that now I have a dead friend. Since Facebook doesn't seem to have a policy of purging its users of the dead or just people who don't use Facebook often, it looks like his profile will just continue on espousing "long live the flying spaghetti monster" as a religious view.

On one hand, it's kind of odd that the page will probably last for as long as facebook does. (What is the lifetime of a social networking site anyway?) On the other hand, it's a little bit comforting that the web will remember you even if the rest of the world doesn't.


Facebook privacy issues

After significant protest, Facebook is now allowing users to opt out of Beacon, the advertising system that links purchases from some vendors to facebook newsfeeds. This doesn't address my main concern, however, since this just means that the data won't be published on the newsfeed; Facebook still stores the data, a creepy Google-esque violation of privacy. My understanding of the process is that affiliated vendors ask for an email during a purchase (almost all online transactions ask for an email address), then send this email to Facebook, asking if that email is a user. If so, then the vendor send the purchase info to Facebook, which would then post the details to their newsfeed. So, I've been making sure to make purchases with email addresses unknown to Facebook.

Zuckerberg has updated his blog apology, now with a paragraph at the bottom indicating that Facebook is addressing this main concern:

Last week we changed Beacon to be an opt-in system, and today we're releasing a privacy control to turn off Beacon completely. You can find it here. If you select that you don't want to share some Beacon actions or if you turn off Beacon, then Facebook won't store those actions even when partners send them to Facebook.

I admit I'm skeptical, but it's a start?


Free computer virus!

Don't know about you guys, but I don't think that I'd click [download] on this sucker, but that's what 409 people did recently.

"Some of them must have clicked on it by mistake. Some must have been curious or stupid," said Mikko Hypponen, head of research at data security firm F-Secure.

Although, honestly, I might well have clicked to the site (hopefully earning the 'curious' label) to see what was the deal... especially given the invincibility of a Mac. </smug>


Working computers are better than broken ones

Follow up to my last post on my dying computer:

So, I replaced the old 80 GB hard drive (that prompted my previous post) in my G4 PowerBook, with a shiny new 120 GB Samsung from NewEgg. This new installation seems to have even made it run better/faster than ever! It has somehow proven to be much simpler and painless than I ever imagined. If it were a windows machine, I can only imagine the pain and suffering that would have taken place. Horray Apple!  Commentary after the jump.


It's official ...

My HD has kicked the bucket.  Disk utility says it has reported a fatal mechanical error and that it will die soon.  Anyone out there in blog land that has replaced their G4 PB hard drive with recomendations on new ones?  This place looks decent, or this one.  I wonder if Kewitt carries this sort of thing.   Also, is the 7200 RPM speed really worth the extra money?  Comments?