Keeping your passwords safe in a safe safe.

Passwords.

Keepass logo

I’m a huge fan of Keepass. Keepass is a free program that will remember your passwords for you.

It is very easy to use and it features ‘auto-type’ so you don’t even have to copy your usernames and passwords, Keepass handles that for you.

Lastpass logo

A little while ago I heard of Lastpass. It basically does the same thing and nicely integrates with your browser, Android and IOS devices. I installed it, imported the Keepass data (which works quite well but not 100% accurately) and I used it. It’s good. It does what you should expect of it.

Then however I started wondering where Lastpass stores its data. With Keepass you have an encrypted file on your computer that holds your passwords. You can synchronise that to all your other devices by sticking it in Dropbox, Google Drive or any other file sharing system you prefer. Not so with Lastpass. I couldn’t find where that file is stored so I went looking.

It turns out that your password file is stored on the Internet, on the Lastpass servers. Each time you connect to the Internet, Lastpass will synchronise the file on the device you’re currently using.

Cloud.

Internet Cloud

So here’s the deal. You use Lastpass and you’re a happy camper. Understand that your passwords are not only on your system (in a spot that’s hard to locate; I tried and didn’t find it) but it’s also on a machine that’s outside your control. I can imagine that’s fine for vacation pictures and your collection of recipes for lasagna and hot tamales, but I didn’t feel very good about that. It’s my collection of usernames and passwords. Of course, you may argue that I’m paranoid, that Lastpass will treat your file with care and loving attention, but…

How many loving, caring systems that contain your files have been hacked lately? Yahoo for instance has a great track record of being hacked. Imagine that a hacker gets access to the file that contains your passwords, slaps some ransomware over it and next time you sync your Lastpass – kazaam, there you are with nothing left to show except a kind note from a hacker to hand over a lot of money for your files. Okay, okay, hackers can also do that to Google Drive and Dropbox (which is why I don’t keep those files there).

Control.

I like to keep things that are mine in my own hands. I’m one of the lucky people with a Synology NAS which gives me my personal cloud system (google ‘Synology Cloud Station‘). There are other ways to set up your personal cloud, I’m sure. Worst case you can always e-mail the file to yourself and download it to your device.

The potential security issue I just described made me go back to Keepass. Because I like my passwords in a safe place, one that I can decide on.

Control freak? Perhaps. But for my entire collection of credentials for online access I am happy with that title.

America. Since it’s in the news.

I didn’t watch the in-ogre-ation yesterday. That was a good decision, everything happened without me just as well.

This morning I was curious. About the @potus twitter account that now is in the twitter-capable hands of one Donald Trump. (Interestingly his original twitter account, https://twitter.com/therealdonaldtrump) doesn’t exist any more.)

Something struck me. Let me show you:

Does this man strike you as a kind man? As someone who is happy? As someone who… cares about you?

I really would like to know, because I don’t think so. Not at all. He looks troubled in this image. Unhappy. Uncertain even. Not the qualities I’d look for in the leader of one of the biggest countries in the world. A country that has to become great again under the guidance of this man.

I have read about the first moves that will make America great again. According to Mother Jones, “the administrative order will end Obama’s efforts to cut premiums on FHA-insured home loans”.

In practice, this means that low-income homeowners will be stuck paying higher insurance premiums on their FHA-insured mortgages.

That’s probably great in itself although I fail to see how. Next to that, George Takei reported this:

Let’s hope they will be replaced by something even better.

Let’s see how event unfold. We may yet see a shimmer of light on the horizon.

The Dakota pipeline.

Much has been said about it. But it’s never enough.

Since when is it the task of the police (you know, these people who uphold the law, protect, serve, saves us from crime and all that) to use force against peaceful protesters who stand up to protect their sacred lands (which is officially theirs) from being turned into a huge oil spill disaster waiting to happen?

(Image via Google+)

Guns, rubber bullets, bean bags (don’t misunderstand those; these things are meant to hurt), water cannons, even dogs. Those are the ways big oil companies try to ‘persuade’ their opponents to go away. It’s a crying shame. Those oil companies should be prosecuted. Where is the honour in such behaviour? All that counts is money. Who cares about the earth, the water, the sacred lands of the native Americans?

Big oil companies… can you grow food on dollars? Can you drink oil when you’re thirsty? No, you can’t. No one can. Are you people deaf, dumb and blind? According to a comment on Youtube, Dakota Access was told by the federal government not to drill close to the Missouri River. Apparently that was too difficult to understand for the board of directors, because have you noticed where they are drilling?

The world stands with Standing Rock. I stand with Standing Rock.

I hope the US government takes responsibility and ends this disgrace, this humiliation of justice. Stop this, please, before people get killed. There have been enough wounded already, and even a reporter was shot in the back with a rubber bullet while interviewing someone.

This is horror.

#NoDAPL

Make it easy on yourself.

Yesterday I dropped a bank order into the mailbox of my bank so something would be paid.

acceptgiro

On the lid was a large sticker: Make it easy on yourself! It continued telling me and the rest of the world that I could use their mobile app or the website to pay stuff. I know that. I have it and I use it at times.

But… is that making it easy on myself? I had to be there so all I needed to do was sign a piece of paper and put it in their box. According to the sticker it’s easier to open the app, log in to the app, type in all the information that’s already on the paper, verify that using my bank card and a special card reading device to verify that I am me using my own phone. All that goes for the website as well.

The meaning is of course to make it easier on them. Everything you do, they don’t have to.

Agora

I watched this film. Agora.

According to Wikipedia an agora was:

The Agora (/ˈæɡərə/; Ancient Greek: Ἀγορά Agorá) was a central spot in ancient Greek city-states. The literal meaning of the word is “gathering place” or “assembly”. The agora was the center of athletic, artistic, spiritual and political life of the city.[1]

An interesting detail is that this is a Greek world while the film is located in Egypt. The film brings amazing views of the ancient city of Alexandria and also of its famous library which was one of the Wonders of the World.

alexandria library
Capture of the Library from the film.

IMDB says about this film:

In the 4th century A.D., astronomer and philosopher Hypatia (Rachel Weisz) teaches her scientific beliefs to a class of male students. Among them is lovestruck slave Davus (Max Minghella), the equally smitten Orestes (Oscar Isaac) and young Christian man Synesius (Rupert Evans). Hypatia dismisses all of their advances, but this romantic drama pales in comparison to a rising battle between Christians and pagans on the streets of soon-to-be war-torn Alexandria.

This synopsis says enough about the film.

The film showed me how amazing people can be when religion takes possession of them. No form of violence is crazy enough to ‘convert’ and ‘convince’ once that madness takes someone in its claws. If you want to learn more about this, I advise you to watch this film.

And no, this is not just Christianity. This is also Islamic and all the other large, monotheistic religions. All of them have their share of bloodshed in their history.

Religion might be something good but the way it’s performed (and seeing the amount of stoning in Agora I can also say ‘executed’) is insane. It made me abhor religion even more than it already did.

Freedom beyond expectations. Or beyond comprehension?

Freedom? What freedom?

Some of you already know, some don’t. Some may have guessed it. And some of you may be shocked (for you I feel a bit sad).

naturists

I’m a naturist.

Naturism

What is naturism? The first thing many people think of, unfortunately, is what the internet throws around so eagerly. Naked people doing all kinds of things that are most certainly not safe for work.

papamoa

First off: that is not naturism. Naturism, also called nudism, simply means doing your regular things but without wearing clothes.

Why would someone do that? Many people wonder about that because clothes are natural. Aren’t we all born dressed? Clothes are normal. True, they are the norm, but their point has been pushed beyond the boundaries of reason.

The boundaries of reason vs. naturism

coldWhen it’s cold we wear clothes. There are not many naturists who will go against that because cold is cold.

What goes against reason (unless you are convinced that clothes must be) is what happens when it’s very hot. You don’t take off your clothes. No, you turn on the air conditioning because otherwise your clothes are too warm. And keeping your clothes on is much better because of the shame.

Shame

shameShame is something wonderful that religion brought upon the world. The original sin, eternal shame, no way to pay off your sin, all that took hold in everyone’s mind and culture. So clothes are the answer. Not thinking outside the box, because that’s not normal. Suppose you are seen by someone else! The shame!

Because that’s something else that’s inserted in everyone’s mind. You are not perfect. You are not pretty. You are not like the impossible standards of beauty that the world put out to sell you all kinds of stuff. Stuff that should make you as pretty as the next supermodel. Who decides who’s super anyway?

So what’s up with the nekkid stuff?

volleybal

Nothing. That is probably disappointing but if you’re looking for exciting pictures or tales you’re in the wrong spot. Naturism and nudism have nothing to do with sex and such things, despite the many things the internet will ‘teach’ you. Nudism and naturism are about being yourself. About feeling free. And how much more free can one be than without clothes? Once you’re used to it you experience freedom beyond expectations. And if you don’t dare to try it you’ll keep wondering about this ‘freedom’ beyond comprehension.

I leave it at this. If you agree with me then power to you. If you are curious you can ask me questions. If you decide you suddenly hate me, that’s up to you. And if you choose to ignore this post, that’s fine as well. Whatever makes you happy. 🙂

Bose IE2 in-ear headphones

Yes, I went ahead and bought them. Even though they’re pricey.

Bose ie2 headphonesThey do look a bit funny with the extra bit bolted on but don’t let the looks fool you. These things are actually comfortable. That is something for me to say because I hate stuff stuck in my ears.

Finding the easiest way to actually put them in took me a while as I lack knowledge on sticking stuff in my ears. It was even a bit of an odd feel to have these additional bits there but they keep the headphones in place and I very quickly didn’t feel them any more.

Then something odd happened: I didn’t like the sound. Bose has the name of producing good bass sound. There was hardly any. Mid range was okay, high tones was mostly okay, but bass was as absent as a shark in the average bowl with goldfish. That was weird because the foldable Sennheiser PX-100a that I own produce quite a good bass on my phone.

Good thing I have another phone. The Meizu MX-5 Ubuntu. Yes, it’s a phone that runs on Linux. I have some music on that and so I tried the IE2 on that. Wow. Difference? More than that. The world of music opened again. Clearly the headphones were not the problem but the phone was. I tried another music player. That worked a lot better so the problem had to be the player I usually use. It took me some wiggling and experimenting until I discovered a few well-hidden settings. Switched on enhanced clarity and enhanced bass.

I’m happy now. 🙂

Mr Trump. The one from America

This man frightens me. Donald Trump. He wants to be the president of the US of A first, and of the world after that. The things he says and the plans he has are worrying.

His presidential website states that Obamacare is horrible. Somehow he will “restore economic freedom” which then will make for “free market principles and working together to create sound public policy that will broaden healthcare access, make healthcare more affordable and improve the quality of the care available to all Americans.” That is where America came from before Obamacare, isn’t it? Meaning sky high fees for doctors and less access to medical help for most people as they can’t afford it.

He proposes tax relief for middle class Americans. This in turn will “Grow the American economy by discouraging corporate inversions, adding a huge number of new jobs, and making America globally competitive again.” Not sure how he plans to do this when less money gets in the hands of the government to actually have money to make America competitive again. Is he going to put his own modest fortune in there?

His approach to international politics is impressive too. According to http://uk.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-bomb-isis-2015-11During a speech at Decker Auditorium in Fort Dodge, Iowa, Trump said he would go after ISIS-controlled oil fields and “bomb the s— out of ’em,” to loud applause.

This would probably destroy these oil fields, but that is of lesser concern. I may be wrong, I’m not a politician.

He’s been married 3 times, as far as I can find. All of those marriages didn’t work out. He’s had several companies. Most (all?) of them did not work out as they went bankrupt.

And this genius is going to lead the US of A to greatness? A president is, as it were, married to his people. Mr Trump can’t even stay married to 1 person. A president has to be able to lead a country. Mr Trump has shown that he can’t even lead a tiny, company sized province.

Mr Trump has been compared to Adolf Hitler more times than I care to count or remember. His bold ideas of putting up walls, throwing certain racial groups out of the country, discriminating against other racial/cultural/religious groups, all these are definitely reminders of this man from Austria. (What, you had no idea Hitler wasn’t German?) Even his boasting, screaming speeches are quite Hitlerian…

Good luck, America. Use your brain when it comes to voting day…

No life. But no death either.

A home for old people. One where the very old people are. People who have nearly nothing left to live for, who are literally waiting for the end. Have you ever been there? No? Humour me and do it. It’s an eye opener.

Go there and look around you. That is where society will send us. People have to get older and older because of science and health care. (Because we get older we’re also ‘allowed’ to work longer, despite the number of jobs going down because of automation, but more on that later perhaps.)

Are people made to be that old? And in that way? Like little heaps of human who have everything behind them, and nothing ahead except the coffin? I don’t think so.

How many of them would choose for a dignified end? Because a dignified existence isn’t an option for so many of them. If you still don’t know what I’m talking about then I implore you to have a look in such a home for the very old. Look at the walkers. The wheelchairs with all kinds of supports in which old people are fed. People who sleep most of the day or have no clue what’s happening around them.

That’s not for me. I would like to keep this life and death in my own hands. Enough, after all, is enough. Also where life is concerned.

Geen leven. Maar ook geen dood.

Een bejaardentehuis. Een waar de heel oude mensen zitten. De mensen die bijna niets meer hebben om voor te leven, die letterlijk zitten te wachten op het einde. Ben je er wel eens geweest? Nee? Doe eens. Het is iets dat je ogen opent.

Ga er eens heen en kijk eens goed om je heen. Dat is waar de maatschappij ons heen stuurt. De mensen moeten steeds ouder worden vanwege de wetenschap en de gezondheidszorg. (Omdat we steeds ouder worden ‘mogen’ we ook steeds langer werken, ondanks dat er door de voortschrijdende automatisering steeds minder banen zijn, maar daarover misschien later eens.)

Zijn mensen wel gemaakt om zo oud te worden? En dan bedoel ik ‘zo’ ook als ‘op deze manier’? Als hoopjes mens die alles al achter zich hebben? Geen toekomst meer behalve de kist? Ik denk het niet.

Hoeveel van hen zouden voor een waardig einde kiezen? Een waardig bestaan zit namelijk voor velen van hen niet meer in. Als je niet weet wat ik bedoel dan vraag ik je met klem nogmaals in een hoogbejaardentehuis te gaan kijken. Naar de rollators, naar de rolstoelen met allerlei steunen waarin oude mensen gevoerd worden; mensen die het merendeel van de dag zitten te slapenof te suffen en die vaak niet eens meer beseffen wat er om hen heen gebeurt.

Geef mij dan maar het heft in eigen handen. Genoeg is tenslotte genoeg. Ook voor het leven.