Category Archives: Technology

Fighting Back Against Package Theft and Porch Pirates

I got a surprise when my latest shipment arrived from Amazon. Though their app has been providing delivery notifications for a long time, this one startled me.

Photo Finish

Screen shot of the Amazon app showing a package in front of the doorstep where it was just delivered.
Photo of a package at the moment of delivery

Not only did the app tell me when the package was delivered, but it included a picture of it in the place where it landed.

The photo was crude. You wouldn’t be able to identify either the package or the doorstep in a lineup. However, I recognized the location where it was delivered.

The photo was so bad that I wondered how it was taken. A typical police body cam would have done a better job, even while clipped onto an officer being dragged by a car. Still, it met the need.

did take the opportunity they provided to “Tell us what you think about this photo. I responded:

It’s a really poor quality picture, but still useful. Of course a better photo would be more useful if I didn’t find the package waiting for me.

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How I Repeatedly Broke My WordPress Web Site

In the beginning, I was a support tech at a vertical market startup. The developer asked me to try to find issues with the software, and I found some – including one major bug. He dubbed me Bug Buster, and the nickname stuck.

Before WordPress

It was only logical that my first site was called BugBuster’s Best. It was a very simple site, and I prided myself on hand-coding it using Notepad. The next incarnation was Steve Case’s Place. Since it was still a simple, hand-coded site, it was easy to migrate to the stevecase.org domain when I acquired it. I completely gutted it soon after that, because my original content had been pretty random.

Twitter’s 140-character limit was far too little for some topics, so I decided it was time to compliment my microblogging with a full-on blog. The hosting company where my site lived offered WordPress as a free blogging platform, so the obvious choice was to start with that.

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When Next Day Shipping Takes a Week

I previously wrote about how Amazon is Taking Over the WorldAmazon‘s Prime Day (which actually ran 30 hours this year) only underscores that impression. The marketing and sales bonanza “surpassed Black Friday and Cyber Monday, making it the biggest day ever in Amazon history.”

Can You Have Too Many Choices?

Amazon Prime members can chose from a variety of shipping options that may include same-day, one-day, next-day, "Standard" and "No-Rush"
Amazon Prime members can chose from a variety of free shipping options

Amazon’s Prime members can chose from a variety of shipping options that may include:

  • Same-day
  • Next day (“One-Day”)
  • Second day (“Two-Day”)
  • “Standard”
  • “No-Rush”

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Think Twice about Crowdfunding Technology Products

Many say crowdfunding is a great way to support a cause or product that you believe in or want to encourage. It’s the financial version of crowdsourcing. I have supported over a dozen crowdfunding campaigns myself, ranging from movies to mine removal.

Crowdfunding lets you experience The Thrill of Victory… and The Agony of Defeat

As suggested by the opening to ABC’s Wide World of Sports, you win some and you lose some. When it comes to crowdfunding, the project can go any of three ways:

  • Doesn’t raise enough in pledges and they are never collected
  • Collects the pledges and accomplishes what they said they’d do
  • Collects the pledges and doesn’t accomplish what they said they’d do

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15 Minutes of Fame

Andy Warhol famously suggested that “In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.” In time, the phrase 15 minutes of fame came to more generally refer to short-lived media publicity or celebrity of an individual or phenomenon.

Lightning Strikes

Out of the blue, I received a tweet from the Think Tank Media Group that I’d made their “list of top 50 Twitter influencers!”.

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How Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence Change Everything

I started to really appreciate futurists Robert Scoble and Shel Israel through their 2013 book Age of Context: Mobile, Sensors, Data and the Future of Privacy . It focused on emerging interactive technologies, and shared some companies to watch. Wearable computing, one of the key focus areas of that book, plays a huge part in their new one.

IN THE BEGINNING, there were mainframes

The book’s introduction starts with an overview of three transformations that followed the mainframes:

  1. From mainframes to interacting with desktop computers using a keyboard
  2. The graphical user interface (GUI), and specifically the mouse
  3. Touch interfaces, including mobile devices

The Fourth Transformation? That would be “Spatial Computing.”

The Fourth Transformation didn’t initially seem especially interested in discussing the actual technology. The focus was more on how retailers and marketers had better get with the program of augmented reality /virtual reality / mixed reality technologies. “If you are part of a big brand, you need to know about this now so you can understand how your customer relationships are about to change and so you begin to adjust course.”

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