Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Synology DSM 5.2 Beta Could Be A Big Deal

March 12, 2015 5 comments

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of Synology. The company has always, always treated me well. In fact if more companies acted like Synology did, I think that we’d have a lot of very happy consumers out there. SynologyLogo_enu_no_slogan_for_web It’s also no secret that I simply do not trust “The Cloud” for securing personal data. As I’ve said before on the Speaking in Tech podcast I have significant doubts as to how much anyone will protect my data as much as I want them to. I know that Scott Lowe has also searched for ways on how to manage encrypted backups as well. The convoluted means by which you have to do this is infuriating. Today Synology announced a number of enhancements to their DSM 5.2 beta that I’m just chomping at the bit to try out that will hopefully put my personal paranoid fears to rest, once and for all. (Yeah, well, maybe not. But hopefully close!) Read more…

Balancing Act: The Struggle Between Orality and Linearity in Computer-Mediated Communication

This is a recovery of a peer-reviewed article published in 1996 in the New Jersey Journal of Communication (now the Atlantic Journal of Communication).

Full Citation:

Metz, J. M. (1996). Balancing act: The struggle between orality and linearity in computer mediated communication. The New Jersey Journal of Communication, 4, 61-70.000

Read more…

A Brief History of the Internet

March 6, 2015 1 comment
Dramatic, but untrue.

Dramatic, but untrue.

You probably thought that the Internet was created to survive a nuclear attack. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, the true origins of the Internet had no military usage whatsoever.

How do I know? I talked to several people who actually created the Internet (well, it was called the ARPANET back then). I took the material from those conversations, as well as other primary and secondary historical sources, and prepared a chronological description of how the Internet (as we knew it in 1994) came into being. Granted, this is a predominantly US-centric historical account – much work was being done in England and France at the same time, but their influence was beyond the scope of the paper.

This history is incredibly valuable. For example, it’s important to note that in today’s debate about Net Neutrality and government intervention, the story of the Internet’s development is a key component that is overlooked. Many of the metaphors used in 2015 about what the “Internet is for” and “why it exists” are, quite simply, dead wrong. Having a better understanding of the history of the (arguably) most important technological development since the Gutenberg printing press can, and should, provide a solid foundation for that debate.

Note: This is a peer-reviewed academic paper presented to the American Historical Association in October, 1995. It is also text prepared for, but ultimately excised from, my doctoral dissertation. In an effort to preserve the text it has been reprinted here, but artifacts from the original digital file (which was heavily corrupted) may remain.  Read more…

Misunderstanding Cyberculture: Martin Rimm and the ‘Cyberporn’ Study

Time CoverThis is a paper that was peer-reviewed and presented to the annual Popular Culture Association conference, Las Vegas, NV, March 1996. Images and links, obviously, were not included in the original. Any strange artifacts in the text were a result from the rescue attempt to save the article from potential file corruption.

Full Citation:

“Misunderstanding Cyberculture: Martin Rimm and the ‘Cyberporn’ Study.” (with Rod Carveth). Paper presented at the annual Popular Culture Association conference, Las Vegas, NV, March 1996. Read more…

Rant on “Gurus” and “Experts”

December 18, 2014 20 comments

I gotta vent. I just gotta.


I’ve long been annoyed as hell by those people who call themselves “experts” or “gurus” on any particular subject, simply because they have an obsession that they wish to rationalize. Among those I think have carved out their own special corner of hell:

  • Life Coaches
  • Motivational Speakers
  • Personal Shoppers
  • Change Agents
  • Feng Shui Experts
  • Thought Leaders
  • Social Media Gurus/Experts

All of these professions have one thing in common: they’re complete bullshit. Especially the last one. Read more…

Alcohol and the Tech Industry

October 30, 2014 Leave a comment

no-alcoholAn article on Alcohol and the Tech Industry, written by Kara Sowles, came through my twitter stream today, followed by a few enthusiastic virtual thumbs up. I’ve written before about the Tech industry and inappropriate behavior (often as a result of overindulgence of alcohol), and I don’t have any problems with the suggestions Ms. Sowles makes about how to improve the experience at a conference.

Having said that, I do think there was a bit of victimhood inherent in her article, and I found myself thinking that while her suggestions are spot-on, it came close to using guilt as a weapon to get what she wants.  Read more…

Unboxing: Synology DS414 Slim

September 12, 2014 1 comment

DS414slimThis morning I unboxed a brand-spanking new Synology DS414 slim NAS device. In the future I’m going to be working on some performance testing parameters in conjunction with other tests I’m running on a Synology DS 1813+ and a Synology DS1511+ (an older, deprecated model), but for now I wanted to write up my first impressions about some of the physical characteristics.

Full Disclosure: Synology sent me this product for review at no cost. No promotional consideration, express or implied, was given except for writing an honest blog at some point (and, well, I’m behind on fulfilling that promise, so…).

For now, I’m going to focus on the physical characteristics about the casing and some of the changes to the earlier model that I had, the DS411 Slim.

Read more…

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