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1306, 2015

Control the Data and Control the Free World

By |June 13th, 2015|Editorial, Tech|Comments Off on Control the Data and Control the Free World

Control over voter data through corporate systems like i360 is dangerous…
Even though this will be the first time I have written about i360, some of you have had to listen to me ad nauseam regarding the dangers of a mass collection of political data by a single corporation (Koch Brothers). I was glad to finally see someone else talking about this issue, even though it was Yahoo News which tends to have a pretty liberal leaning.

Most of you would not believe the capabilities we have within my own company in regards to data collection. The thing is; it’s not “us” that is actually implementing this mass data collection – there are many companies who are doing the actual collecting – knowledge is power, especially when you know how to gain access to all that data and put it together in the most useful ways possible.

For years we’ve played things pretty close to the vest, not really disclosing how we get some things done in campaigns, like the statewide race last year where we won 14 counties on a measly $30,000. Yes, we lost that one… but it was still fun having people ask, “How on earth did you manage to win 14 counties on 30 grand?” It’s all about the data and being able to properly target people. We’ve spent much time attempting to explain this to Republican candidates and have had too many tell us they don’t want move forward because they “don’t understand.” So, what I am going to attempt to do is explain the “outcomes” of what happens when data is properly used in campaigns.

The most drastic financial disadvantage we have ever faced but won the most votes was the Statehouse race […]

2604, 2015

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Drone Legislation

By |April 26th, 2015|Editorial, Government Regulation, South Carolina, State, Tech|Comments Off on The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Drone Legislation

In an all-in-one strike to restrict the people and allow more government intrusion into our lives… AND… in typical Columbia fashion, in their rush to save us all from ourselves, they seemingly forget to think through (again).

Okay, so maybe we don’t want our neighbors just flying around over our property, but to allow the government access to our property without the over-site of having a warrant issued… well that just sounds more like something a certain senator out of Lexington would do, so we were shocked that she wasn’t the primary sponsor as she has been on a roll with government intrusive legislation recently, but rather it was another liberal; Democrat Senator Vincent Sheheen.

The drone technology is still too new, and to begin writing any restrictive legislation at this stage is not just bad idea, but very short sided.  What do we tell employers like Amazon who want to develop the drone technology to eventually deliver small packages? We’re sorry but that will now be illegal unless you follow all the roadways so as not to fly over someone’s property?

And, what about search and rescue? There are non-governmental groups which get called out more than most people would like to know to search for missing people, children, Alzheimer patients, lost hikers, etc.  Where using drones can make the difference between life and death, what do you tell these people and the families of those who are missing? Sorry but it’s illegal to use these efficient tools in South Carolina?

This from Brian Adams who volunteers in search and rescue efforts:
The South Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee is currently considering Bill S498 designed to prevent unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV’s) from being flown over private property and being used […]

2603, 2015

Fun with Drones

By |March 26th, 2015|Tech|Comments Off on Fun with Drones

Olivier C builds custom shells for drones in Star Wars fashion. He’s build the Millennium Falcon and others with his latest creation being an Imperial Star Destroyer. This is awesome work and really a very cool piece of tech…

1903, 2015

Jetpack Crash

By |March 19th, 2015|Tech|Comments Off on Jetpack Crash

Did you lose your favorite website in the past 24 hours?

Years ago, web developers scoffed at WordPress. It was just a silly little tool to build simple little websites… That was then, this is now and WordPress has continue to grow, develop, and even become a preferred platform of search engine giant Google. Developers now look at WordPress as a useful tool, something that often gives them a head start in development as there are endless development possibilities and Search Engine Optimization built right in, with some premium themes giving an optimization edge that can put even the novice ahead of their competition with little effort.

One of the greatest things about WordPress can also (occasionally) be its downfall; it is like a giant development pool where everyone is welcome to come jump in and develop pieces they are good at which can interact with other pieces.  For example, you may choose a theme that looks good to you but depending on what functionality you desire, there are seemingly endless plugins which have been developed to work with most themes. There are plugins which help remove SPAM comments, plugins which help with eCommerce, plugins which enable to you place a variety of interactive objects on your site without have to have a professional developer on retainer.

I would be surprised if Jetpack isn’t the most popular plugin as you would practically be a fool to try to run a WordPress site and not utilize all the tools in Jetpack.  It has been described as the “Swiss Army Knife of Plugins” and I couldn’t possibly think of a more accurate description. It gives you site stats, makes sharing posts across social media a breeze and dozens of other […]

1303, 2015

Magnetospheric Multiscale Launch by NASA

By |March 13th, 2015|Tech|Comments Off on Magnetospheric Multiscale Launch by NASA

From NASA’s official Facebook page:

One hour, 47 minutes after launch, all four Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) observatories have separated from the Centaur upper stage and are flying on their own in an initial orbit of 363 miles by 43,598 miles.

MMS will study magnetic reconnection, a fundamental process that occurs throughout the universe when magnetic fields connect and disconnect explosively, releasing energy and accelerating particles up to nearly the speed of light. Unlike previous missions that have observed only evidence of magnetic reconnection events, MMS has sufficient resolution to observe and measure reconnection events as they occur. While MMS will fly through reconnection regions in less than a second, key sensors on each spacecraft are able to capture measurements 100 times faster than any previous mission. In addition, MMS consists of four identical observatories, which together will provide the first ever three-dimensional view of magnetic reconnection.

The mission observes reconnection directly in Earth’s protective magnetic space environment known as the magnetosphere. By studying reconnection in this local, natural laboratory, MMS helps scientists understand reconnection elsewhere, such as in the atmosphere of the sun and other stars, in the vicinity of black holes and neutron stars and at the boundary between our solar system’s heliosphere and interstellar space.

Launch of MMS:

Images from NASA:

To learn more about the MMS mission, visit:
http://www.nasa.gov/mms

1409, 2005

Kerry Wood – Number One Programmer

By |September 14th, 2005|Tech|Comments Off on Kerry Wood – Number One Programmer

Kerry wrote his first computer program in 1982 at sixteen years of age and more than two decades later he has designed and created a medical program which has achieved a number one ranking in the United States. The path Wood took to get here was far from typical.

In 1984 when Kerry Wood graduated high school, hardly anyone had a computer in their home and the term “personal computer” was nothing anyone would have understood, so when Kerry had made his mind up that he wanted to go to college to study programming, many in his life thought he was nuts. “I remember being told that computers were just a fad and that there would never be a serious career to be had in that field,” said Kerry Wood. “I could find no real support to pursue what I knew I wanted to do.”

Relying on his family to help pay for school, Kerry Wood signed up for some business courses at a local college. He was miserable and knew he had to do something different with his life and began having conversations with military recruiters. Kerry Wood joined the United States Air Force and went to basic training in San Antonio, Texas, at nineteen.

After completing basic training, Kerry Wood was then shipped off to Biloxi, Mississippi for additional training. Shortly after arriving in Biloxi, Kerry received orders that he would be assigned to Shaw Air Force Base in his home state of South Carolina upon completion of training. Kerry Wood never made it to Shaw. Kerry Wood was sitting in class one morning when men in dark suits entered the military classroom and asked for Kerry by name, and requesting that he leave with them. […]