2017 Predictions

Ah, the year clicks over from 2016 to 2017, and suddenly everybody weighs in with their predictions for the new year. I guess I should do some similar weighing in.

So, Swami Anderson places his clenched fist upon his turban, and predicts …

Politics

President Elect Trump has selected some truly awful, unqualified, and potentially corrupt cabinet members. From Jeff “The KKK is ok except for their drug usage” Sessions for Attorney General, to Betsy “wouldn’t know a public school from a dumpster fire” DeVos, to Ben “I once lived in public housing, so I know best” Carson for HUD, it is a truly awful set of advisors.  Of course they will all sail through confirmation. Continue reading →

Blogging History/Workflow

tools

Set the wayback machine to August 2009. I was in a pretty bad place work wise, and I created a blog on WordPress.com merely as an outlet. Shortly after that I dove into hosting my own blog, using my domain tralfaz.org, and the rest is history.

In between then and now, I have been through three (four if you count my work for Southern Arizona Greyhound Adoption) hosting / VPS providers, worked with WordPress from version 2 to the current 4.7, Drupal, Joomla! and Ghost. I have experimented with writing a custom site on the CakePHP framework. Continue reading →

It was a new day yesterday,

Ian Anderson

but it’s an old day now …

2016 is finally over, and 2017 has crossed the threshold. While we lost many of my Rock and Roll idols during 2016, and we finally had to say goodbye to Tate, our seizure greyhound, it wasn’t all bad.

Dealing with some of my domains, making a transfer in December, I found that my prized possession, the .com for Tralfaz was lying fallow. So, instead of leaving it parked, or using it for some experimentation (the last use I had of it was as a playground for CakePHP, a pretty robust framework), I just spun up a simple WordPress site, picked a pretty clean theme (Hello World from Themehaus) and setting it up.

But, what will I post here?  I already have a site at tralfaz.org with almost 800 posts. Many of those posts are trivial, or product reviews, or fun observations. I have thought about wading through and “cleaning” it up, reducing the noise. But that, in the words of Herr Drumpf, “Yuuuuuge.” Nope, apart from a complete restart, that is going to be a cesspool.

I do have a professional site The Product Bistro that I use for my product management, marketing, product marketing, and other serious topics. So that is covered.

Perhaps I should keep this serious, some posts on politics, on business, on technology or whatever.

Well, hang in there, and let’s see where this goes.

The New Republican Healthcare Plan

The new republican plans for health care sure sounds like “just die quickly, and quietly” Well, as we expected, once the Republicans captured the White House (well, in 29 days now), their first order of business will be to repeal the ACA.

They have been talking about repealing it and replacing it for 6 years now, bloviating at every opportunity, and doing fuck-all in the House with 54 attempts to repeal or defund portions of the ACA (or the pejorative “Obamacare”) so this isn’t a surprise.

However, some of the rhetoric coming out of the Paul Ryan camp is interesting. Suddenly, instead of shutting it down on day 1, they are talking about repealing and delaying for 2 – 3 years until they can devise a “replacement” for it. Yeah, that sounds do-able. Continue reading →

Interesting Project – SSL on Digital Ocean

The advent of Let’s Encrypt means that there is no real excuse to not have SSL/TLS encryption enabled on your website. Now I do on my Ghost properties As someone who has long run his own websites, first with managed hosting, and now with VPS instantiations, I have wanted to take the SSL/TLS plunge. But, as a hobbyist, the cost to go HTTPS has just been a burden that I couldn’t justify. Sure, I can handle a half dozen VPS’s on Digital Ocean, as the bandwidth is modest, and I have yet to make a big splash (hit wise), it is truly a hobby. Registering a certificate with a top tier authority, for a simple website, was $120+ per year. So I lived with the unencrypted http protocol. Continue reading →

Russian Intervention in the 2016 US election

Yep, the Russians interfered with the election. Of course, the US has done this for over a century, so we shouldn’t be upset. Unlike many opinions flying around about how much outrage that the Russians (and Vladimir Putin) have interfered in the 2016 US presidential election, by hacking both the DNC and RNC servers and email. Of course they only released the goods on the Democrats, thereby putting a finger on the scale for the victor, Donald Trump.

However, this outrage is a bit mislaid. Of course, a little googling will identify a long history of the US interfering in the affairs of other countries. From interventions to protect the US Fruit Company in Honduras in 1903, to the overthrow and coup d’état that installed the Shah of Iran in 1953, to repeated and long term intervention in Nicaragua, there is plenty of instances of the US government and CIA having their hand in the cookie jar. Continue reading →

Customer Success – Key Role

The role of Customer Success Manager is a key part of the digital transformation of business, driving both ARR and Lifetime Customer Value up Digital Transformation, it’s all the rage, and doing a simple Google search yields a plethora of hits, from training to consultants, to the big market research companies, all weighing in. This wave of disruption continues to grow, and brings with it myriad opportunities to completely change the business.

In a nutshell, in the late ‘oughts, with the introduction of the Apple iPhone, the convergence of ubiquitous network connectivity, and the rise of the “cloud,” the stage was set for yet another transformation of business. Suddenly, the paradigm of where you work, and what tasks you perform were being disrupted. From the simple: an app on your smartphone to approve purchase requisitions, to the complex: integration of the CRM, the Marketing systems, and the ERP system to provide deep insight into the function and flow of business, and much more were realized every day. Continue reading →

The Death of the (insert name here) Party

In the run up to the 2016 Presidential election, I heard pundit after pundit, and commenter after commenter bleating about how Trump’s candidacy was going to be the end of the Republican party. The fact that they nominated (with a full throated roar) such a terrible candidate, a narcissistic, racial pandering, xenophobic, serial sexual harassing, and in general boorish candidate, surely, this would destroy the Republican party.

As tempting as it was (being a fairly liberal, mostly Democrat voting person) to back in the impending demise, and hapless wandering in the dark of the Republicans, daring to hope that even gaining the 20 or so seats in the house for a complete Democrat rout, I had to step back. Continue reading →

How Gullible are the Progressives

With all the recent focus on “fake” news and how much reinforcement happens in the echo chamber on Facebook, with the heavy bias for the conservative point of view, one would think that the progressives would be a bit more cautious, but alas, that appears to not be the case.

The past few days, my Facebook timeline has been loaded with bogus stories about how two computer scientists claim that the results in Wisconsin, Michigan (which hasn’t certified yet) and Pennsylvania look anomalous, and that we should inundate the US DoJ to initiate a review, with a phone number. Continue reading →

A first brush with Time Machine

As a long time Apple user, (one could say fanatic) I have just used TimeMachine as a set-it-and-forget-it technology. Buy a big external disk, plug it in, and point TimeMachine at it, and let it do its magic.

Once, I had deleted a file, and I recovered it, pretty painlessly, but apart from that one incident, it has been in the background.

Until recently.

New iMac for Barbara

Continue reading →