re Album Reviews

I cannot remember the last time I read a review of a newly released album. However, I used to read lots of reviews way back when.

Out of all the hundreds and hundreds of reviews I read, only one sticks out in my memory, and it is, in my mind, the greatest album review ever written. I have no recollection of who wrote it or where I read it. But back in late 1978 Eric Clapton released an album titled Backless. Below is the complete text of the review I read of Backless.

“Spineless.”

Does this scare you? It sure as hell scares me.

Straight out of a dystopian nightmare!

Canon uses AI cameras that only let smiling workers inside offices.

Next they will use thought detection to only allow people thinking happy thoughts. Luckily for you, they will gladly supply you with drugs to make you think happy thoughts – and you will feel happy about that. Why am I not surprised that this story is based in China?

Emoji rant

If you cannot say something to me plainly, maybe it doesn’t need to be said. I never bother to try and decipher long strings of emojis, regardless of who sends them.

Don’t call me a hypocrite. I know, I sometimes use the occasional emoji, perhaps a smile or a flower or heart. Hell, I used emojis back when they were constructed out of punctuation. They were used as flourishes, for emphasis. But do we really need 78 different, nearly indistinguishable smiley emojis? How many angry faces do we really need to choose from? I will never try to express something through the use of long, often inscrutable, chains of emojis in the hope that you interpret them the same way I do.

If you want to say something to me, say it using plain and clear language. If I want to read pictographs, I will study ancient Egyptian.

A follow-up re Macs

If you are interested, I can direct you to some additional information relating to my earlier blog post about recent Macs and the Mac operating system.

This blog post by security researcher Jeffrey Paul further explains why Apple’s decisions about hardware design and operating system implementation are so problematic. If you are a Mac user and have any concerns at all about the privacy and security of your recent or future systems this is a must-read article.

To be fair, it can be argued that Apple’s approach can make it harder for someone who actually steals your computer to wipe it and treat it as their own. However, I feel that the way Apple restricts your ability to independently manage your machine while leaving it open outside interference and monitoring far outweighs this limited benefit.

No new Macs for me

The arrogance of Apple/Tim Cook has gone too far. All their talk about the security of their devices and systems is just a whitewash over steps that would make Orwell blush.

This is a must-read piece if you are thinking of buying a new Mac or upgrading your operating system. https://sneak.berlin/20201112/your-computer-isnt-yours/

What to do? Steps include not updating to the new Big Sur operating system, not buying any Apple Silicon -based Macs, making sure you’re using Little Snitch or some other firewall software that will let you intercept Apple’s outbound traffic from your system, and taking a long, hard look at your relationship with Apple.

I’ve used Macs for many years, I have a significant investment in software for my Macs. I can continue to use my current Macs (or newer replacements, if necessary) – I’m comfortable with them and they meet my needs. But I will stick with the rules I outlined above. If I have to walk away from using Macs, I will. Currently the greatest personal inconvenience in using Linux involves support for my iPod (which is essential to me). Linux is not a solution for most art/design pros. Windows, of course, continues as a platform that will support my iPod, if I have to go that direction. There is a lot of Pro-level software that is available for both Mac and Windows. Moving to Windows from the Mac is easier than ever nowadays.

I used to dream about having the funds to buy a maxed-out Mac system, now I will dream of assembling my own custom high-performance computer running anything but Apple operating systems.

About exceptionalism

During this U.S. election season, we hear more often about “American exceptionalism.” Sadly, an awful lot of Americans think it means “I’m an American, so you must make an exception for me.” And so, they decide that they don’t need to socially distance and that wearing a face-covering doesn’t apply to them. They refuse to understand that they do not have a right to impose their possible infectiousness on others. It seems that only personal hospitalization turns any of these covidiots into true believers. Alas, our health care system cannot sustain the strain caused by all the covidiots being hospitalized at once.