20140401

Sexual Assault Awareness Month

The month of April has been designated Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) in the United States. The goal of SAAM is to raise public awareness about sexual violence and to educate communities and individuals on how to prevent sexual violence.

Learn more here: http://www.nsvrc.org/saam/sexual-assault-awareness-month-home

20140304

My letter to the Senate RE Patent Trolls

Dear Chairman Leahy, Ranking Member Grassley, Chairman Rockefeller, and Ranking Member Thune:


We, the undersigned, are inventors, entrepreneurs, investors, and concerned citizens. We build, invest in, and use new businesses and technologies. We create jobs and keep our economy moving forward.


We urge you to push forward and support comprehensive legislation that tackles the growing problem of patent trolls: entities that prey on businesses, inventors, and end users. Patent trolls take advantage of vague patents and the exorbitant costs of litigation (from discovery costs to lawyers and court fees) to extort money from America’s businesses. And it’s not just large companies that face this threat. In fact, the majority of companies targeted by patent trolls have less than $10 million in revenue. When small businesses face dubious multimillion dollar lawsuits, our innovation economy suffers.


In December, the House took a significant step in passing the Innovation Act with an inspiring, bipartisan majority of 325-91, and the President followed by stating his intention to sign the bill.


Now we are calling on the Senate to follow the House, and the President, and pass a bill that addresses the real dangers of our patent troll problem. The proposed S. 1720 contains strong transparency provisions and will rein in bad-faith demand letters. Though less comprehensive than the Innovation Act, it is an important first step, and it should be moved forward immediately together with other pending Senate bills.


We need to increase transparency in the litigation process, starting with demand letters and patent ownership; we need to control the costs of litigation by, when appropriate, shifting fees and limiting expensive discovery; we need better programs for challenging bad patents; and we need to protect end-users and consumers.


The patent troll problem affects us all—from those of us who create technologies, to those who use and invest in them. We expect a patent system that encourages innovation, and we rely on a robust innovation economy unimpeded by toxic litigation. Patent trolls overshadow both needs, so we urge you to pass meaningful, bipartisan patent reform that will strengthen and protect American innovation.


Sincerely,




Join me in calling on the Senate to pass strong, bipartisan patent reform https://trollingeffects.org/join via @trollingeffects

20140222

Product review: Acer laptop

A couple of weeks ago my laptop (an old Lenovo running Lubuntu) was stolen. That meant that I had to buy a replacement.


I bought an Acer Aspire and here is my review.


What I Liked:


  • The price. I paid $300 for it.
  • The size. It is small and light enough to be compact. It is large enough to feel like you're using a full size keyboard.
  • The battery life. It seems like it lasts long enough for me to do all of my #GTD stuff in one sitting.

What I didn't like:


  1. The pre-installed OS was Linpus. Not only was I unfamiliar with Linpus but it was also a text-only interface. I need to have some sort of graphical user interface (GUI) to be able to do stuff. I used my HP Elitebook to download Linux Mint onto a flash drive and I installed that on my new Acer.
  2. The RAM memory was shipped with only 4GB. I bought an 8GB kit and installed it. It runs great.
  3. The touchpad was hard to use at first. It had this weird click function where I'd press down on the touchpad and the whole thing would click. I don't like that. I now use a USB mouse and disabled the touchpad - I like that much better. I also ended up changing the setting that allowed me to use a touchpad like a more normal touchpad where you could tap it and it would register as a click. I like that better than the default setting.



Find your very own HP Elitebook on Amazon.com:


HP EliteBook 8470p Intel Core i5 3230M(2.60GHz) 4GB Memory 500GB HDD 14.0" Notebook Windows 7 Professional 64-bit