Saturday, November 19, 2011

In Love Again...

...with my Nook Color. What did you think?!  - Sheesh!-

OK let me explain...

I'm not married, I have no kids (OK three cats), and except for a vehicle who's maintenance is repeatedly ignored... With just the basic cost of living expenses, I have few things to gobble up my extra cash.

My weakness, gadgets...namely of a computer/tablet nature. I have absolutely no reason to have more than a Desktop, a Cell-phone and maybe an E-Reader. 

Of course, a more accurate audit would include an Acer net-book (almost never used), a now dead 7 year old Dell Laptop (may it rest in pieces), a Nook Color, an Acer a500 Tablet (very nice), and lastly the Apple iPad II, which I had to buy in order to give me a reason to purchase the really cool Belkin Folio Blue Tooth keyboard case... I know, right?!

Trust me, no one knows better than the addict, that they are in fact...addicted. Not me though...I could stop really...

I started down this road of debauchery with the best of intentions, I just wanted a taste, but didn't want to commit too much in the way of funds...cuz the car needed to be fixed and...

I was looking to buy an E-Reader.

It would seem that age has provided some fraction of wisdom to my buying habits, so I did some research and came across an article talking about how Barnes & Noble had just released their color E-Reader. I was intrigued, and then more so when I dug a little deeper, finding a whole host of hackers dedicated to exploiting technology for the common man - me. Well, sort of common...I'm a man...and... Oh go blow!

Anyhow, these dedicated gadget guru's had literally dissected the device, in form and code. In doing so, they found that the Nook Color was a fairly powerful Android tablet, shackled in firmware that kept it from being used to it's full potential. On top of this discovery, they'd devised a way to root the device, giving it all the functionality of it's original intent as an E-Reader, but with full access to the entire Android Market.

After watching a few very informative rooting video's, I was out the door and back in 30 minutes with my new treasure. It was easy to root, and due to the device's design, with little risk of bricking (screwing up beyond recovery). I was ecstatic and proclaimed the Nook Colors virtues to any soul that would listen.

I was happy for a while with my new love, but she was moody and prone to uninvited upgrades from B&N, who was desperately trying wrestle her from my control. It was a battle, and one that would prove very frustrating. So..., I did what many people in a loveless relationship would do...I strayed and shacked up with an a500.

You have to understand, she was so beautiful, so affordable, and so powerful. I could not look away from her Honeycomb sweet promises, or her dual core processor and nVidia graphics...I was in LUST, and so I was very bad.

I had my way with a500 and she with me...but always I would think of my first love...lying there on the bookshelf, neglected, dejected...

I thought I was happy, and really in a carnal sense, I was...but it wasn't until I wandered through my local Target and fell to the seductive charms of the Belkin Folio w/Blue Tooth Keyboard (for iPad's only), did I realize that my happiness was but a simple self imposed delusion.

iPad and I shacked up for a while, as tawdry lovers trying to forget their pain, she the loss of her father (Steve) and I with my addiction denial...until one day..., the ring was mean...

Barnes and Noble had the audacity to come out with a new tablet, called the Nook Tablet...

It was like a sexier version of my first love, calling me back to the fold, promising that all was forgiven...if I would just give her one more chance...

"NO!" I shouted, "I cannot do this...or can I? No! I must look away.... But she's got a new Dual Core processor, access to Hulu and Netflix! I cannot...please don't tempt me further..."

I ran to the bookshelf..., "Nook my's me I've come back...if you'll have me."

So we got back together, I tried running her as a stock E-Reader again, the attempt was fleeting and the urge to buy the new Tablet constantly growing like a slow cancer, until...


Folks, this is a custom modification of Gingerbread specifically designed for the Nook Color, it's rock solid, it exploits the Nook Colors Blue Tooth capabilities, and provides full access to the Android Market. It's smooth as silk, and except for the fact that you cannot (as of yet) run Hulu (Netflix works great, but not in Hi-Def), it's fraken awesome.

This OS is like the pill that Harcourt Fenton Mudd (Orig Star Trek - Epis. 6) gave average looking females to make them insanely desirable. Only after four days this pill has yet to wear off, and has truly unleashed this little machine.

I took it down to the Barnes & Noble in Santa Rosa yesterday, aside from the improved graphics of the Nook Tablet, with CyanogenMod-7.1.0, my Nook Color put it's younger sibling to shame. I soon had people bombarding me with questions about how they too could do the same to their Nook Color... Management began to move in my direction, so I made my way out the door with a sly smile. Oh yeah, I'm in love again.

P.S. - For those of you who've bought the Nook Tablet, fear not, Cyanogen will undoubtedly be modded for you too. Imagine what it might do with your hardware....

Saturday, November 5, 2011

And the lies keep coming...

I don' know about you, but I'm getting real tired of ads, or rather the propaganda spewed upon us by network television. The airing of these blatant untruths is the direct result of major media having lost all measure of integrity due to a lack of government regulation, and large corporate interests who've taken full advantage.

The ones that really goad me are those promoted by, the Corn Refiners Association "Sugar is Sugar", ConocoPhilips (Power in Cooperation), and those multitude of commercials promoting the American Petroleum Institutes host of lies about Alberta Tar Sands.

Sugar is Sugar?

Let's start with my most hated ad, "Sugar is Sugar". This is the biggest load of complete bull-shit ever force fed upon the American public. The Corn Refiners Association in this country has a sizable wallet, and with it they are now funding a very large campaign to convince the federal government to allow them to rename "High-Fructose Corn Syrup" to something far less benign sounding - "Corn Sugar".

Folks, this is where critical thinking needs to click into overdrive, and you have to ask yourself, why? What difference does it make? I mean if sugar is sugar, and high-fructose corn syrup is sugar, than who heck cares what it's called? Let the lobbies have their way for cripes sake, let em call it "Really Good for you Stuff" for all we care. Right?

Maybe, but probably not. Take a closer look. Did you know that most European countries limit the use of high-fructose corn syrup? It's cheaper to buy, and well...after all it's the same. So what's the problem?

The problem isn't in the initial cost, it's the resulting cost where it's far less appealing than real SUGAR. You see there are a whole host of studies which the media in this country has done a stellar job of obfuscating. These studies show, a direct link between high-fructose corn syrup and a whole host of debilitating diseases like diabetes.

I know what your thinking, isn't that the same direct link that real sugar would have if it was the prevalent sweetener used? No, not really, the studies show a distinct difference between the two. But don't trust me, do your own research online, Google it!

Here's an article I found to share with my friends at work, this one is based on a study conducted by one of the smaller, lesser known universities, maybe you've heard of it?

Consider studies like this, coupled with the fact that the majority of these European countries have nationalized healthcare, and you begin to understand their incentive to limit the amount of this stuff in their national diet.

For every positive misrepresentation of what high-fructose corn syrup is, their are a multitude of studies that put them to shame, and by sources that have nothing to gain from freely providing the results. Oh alright, they were probably funded by the countries governments who have national health care programs, you know the ones that want to be proactive in maintaining the health of a nation and keeping expenses down...

Power in Cooperation?

To be fair, there are many large energy companies spouting lies about Hydraulic Fracturing to gain access to natural gas trapped in the earth. But ConocoPhillips has earned my ire with their misleading "Classroom" ad. It show's three presumably bright college students, with a mute professor, in the middle of a heated debate about natural gas.

It's all very cute, maybe you've seen it? Two girls, one it it.

Interesting, maybe that's not a professor at all... Perhaps this was a guest speaker from...duh...I dunno...the American Petroleum Institute? Yeah, that makes sense, that would explain why he wouldn't have suggested that the students research the subject more closely, rather than blindly accepting the American Petroleum Institutes own claims about the safety of Hydraulic Fracturing.

This ad is akin to a fox lecturing hen's on the safety of unfenced chicken coops. The sad thing is that it's indicative of what we as a society have become. The video ends with their ConocoPhillips new trade mark statement, "There's Power in Cooperation"

So...what am I supposed to take from this ad, and that last trademarked statement?

Well, the ad started with one of the students questioning the environmental safety of the process, but after a few choice industry talking points from the other two, and some conferring with the guest speaker while the narrator for the ad blathers on about ConocoPhillips, she caves and agrees with them.

The message is clear to me now, "Trust the American Petroleum Institute, don't listen to anyone else...were the experts, were here only to serve your best interests. Just cooperate with us, don't fight us, COOPERATE....."

Yeah but what about the industries opponents and documentaries like this one... 

If your interested in the truth behind the lies presented in this and other commercials like it, do some simple research. You can start here....

And lastly...Alberta Tar Sands

Ever hear the statement, "America is addicted to oil."?

The truth is, mankind is addicted to oil in the worst possible way. Were junkies, we cannot stop individually, we need to act as a group to stop the madness.

The best analogy I can give to describe the Alberta Tar Sands, is that the United States represents a strung out heroin addict, strapped for cash, looking for a cheap fix.

The filthy oil thats obtained in Alberta, while leaving behind an environmental disaster there, is then to be piped across the heartland of our country, jeopardizing aquifers that stretch for thousand of miles. It represents the dealer on the street, selling us a new kind of high, one made in a outdoor lab in the woods...lets call it "Crack". I think you can see where were going here...

But hey, don't listen to the words of a raving conspiracy freak, take a look at the ads provided by...who...oh yeah! Who better to trust, but the absolute benchmark of  environmental stewardship, Exxon Mobile...

But wait...what about these detractors...

So what's the point of this latest blog rant? It's simple really, don't be the hen who takes the word of the fox.

Just Joe...