Harbaughs, North Korea, Anonymous, and more…

Well, I am bored today and I am not in a position to make a video, so let’s see what is going on in the world. 

It looks like everyone is very excited about the Super Bowl and it appears as though the Ravens made it to New Orleans a day behind the 49ers. What that means, if anything, I don’t know. Don’t tell my wife (hardcore 49ers fan), but I think I would like to see the Ravens get the win. They are certainly the underdogs and “unlikely heroes” out of the teams that went to the playoffs this year and that coupled with the Ray Lewis story makes them a team to cheer for. Of course, everyone in their right mind thinks that San Francisco will win, but they would also be excited if Baltimore gave them a run for their money. 

Google released a detailed map of North Korea, something that hasn’t been done up until this point. In fact, I think the only people who had anything close to an accurate map at their disposal were the government with their super-secret squirrel satellites. I wonder how North Korea is going to take it, since they have done a very good job keeping their country, culture, and development a secret up until now. Does this have something to do with the visit by Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt a few weeks ago? Who knows, but it could mean that there might be some global changes toward the cultural knowledge of the country. Will the new visibility expose Kim Jong-Un as a great leader who bridges the gap that has always existed between North Korea and the civilized nations of the world, or will it just put a larger spotlight on a tyrannical dictator and provide everyone with greater insight on how bad it really is over there? Only time will tell. 

Al Jazeera released an article titled “Will the US wage cyber war on its enemies?” Isn’t it too late to ask that question? Someone should let them know about Stuxnet, Duqu, Flame, and whatever other cyber-attacks the US government has confessed to committing. It is no secret that other governments, namely one that starts with “C” and ends with “hina”, control their nation’s access to the internet by requiring that citizens and businesses use the state sponsored internet service provider. That ensures that their people do not fall victim to all that evil “Western propaganda”, but also allows the government to control a nation-wide botnet that can be used as a massive cyber weapon whenever the situation is warranted. Should you be scared? I don’t know. I am not any more afraid of cyber weapons than I am of nukes when it comes to state sponsored attacks. It is the millions of kids rebelling against their elders that you should be afraid of. This brings me to my next point and a new paragraph for good order. 

Anonymous is a group of seemingly random people around the world that have been known to be behind many good things that most of us can appreciate. They have hacked leaders of the Westboro Baptist Church and have blocked them from protesting many events. They have exposed sexual assault cases and have spoken out against censorship. The problem is, many (maybe most) of the members do not have any cause. They have no real leader, which they attribute to their being “anonymous”, but it also causes them to have a complete lack of direction. Anyone can buy a Guy Fawkes mask on Amazon and claim to be a member, which results in the group having thousands of punk kids who want to stand for something, belong, feel cool, and express their rebellion over all things they don’t think they agree with. Learning to “hack” and gaining access to common hacking tools is extremely easy today. Just Google Backtrack, download and burn the disk, and search YouTube for tutorials and you have everything you need to “anonymously” cause social unrest. The bottom line is this: if you have a cause and you understand that you should probably think before you act, have fun. Tell us how it went. If you want to join a fake cause just so you can act out fell like you belong to something bigger than yourself, grow up. To be completely honest, if there was a group like Anonymous when I was younger, I probably would have been all for it. I understand the appeal and excitement associated with the group, I just wish they would pick a cause (or 10) and stick to them. That, and think about their actions. I sound like a Dad. #EndRant 

For my last topic, I want to talk about something related to law or finances. I heard somewhere that they generate the highest paying ads, so I want to test it out. Aha! It looks like the chain bookstore Barnes and Noble is having financial difficulties and is planning on closing some of its stores. Internet sites like Amazon and the growing use and popularity of eBooks has caused B&N to have less-than-acceptable earnings for the past few years, and the problem seems to be getting worse. Why should we care, right? Books are cheaper online and the Kindle is better than the Nook. What many people don’t know is that Barnes and Noble is also a great place to take kids. Imagine a library with stuffed animals, a train table (I have yet to see a B&N without one), crafts, and a Starbucks for Mom. They host “story time” sometimes multiple times a day and the design of the kids’ book section is like a small stage with tables and a wall of bookshelves that keep the kids in. In fact, responsible parents should take their kids to B&N anyway, because then they might learn how to read before entering the workforce. Imagine that. 

Well, that is all I have for today, folks. I planned to do a video on Anonymous sometime, and I still might if I find the time. Stay tuned for more videos and blog posts! Thank you for your time and attention. 

Steve (BurntCoffeeSucks)

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