Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Technology Lesson: Replying To Facebook Posts Via Your Inbox

When I usually receive a Facebook notification in my inbox, I skim only the comment someone has left on my wall, or in response to my comment elsewhere in the Facebook universe.

Facebook provides a link under the comment that allows you to read the comment on Facebook. That's usually where I go to provide a comment. But Facebook also lets you comment by replying to the Facebook notification! (This may or may not be new. I've only noticed now, and so far, it's new to my friends. Maybe we are all haphazard readers.)

Here's an example of a notification e-mail:

Note that this is through Gmail.

As seen under View This Post: "Reply to this email to comment on this status."

Here is my reply to that comment, as an e-mail:

After I clicked send, I was able to confirm my success for the purposes of this blog (Having done this before, without logging into Facebook, and receiving follow-up replies was my previous confirmation.):

Ta da!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Vocabulary Lesson: Jailbreak/Jailbreaking

Jailbreaking is when you hack the operating system on your smartphone or device (typically an iPhone) to override the operating system or service provider. It's not advised, as it can void a contract, get you in a lot of trouble with a service provider or manufacturer, and (sometimes) ruin the smartphone or device.

Or, from about.com: "Jailbreaking is a way of freeing it from the limitations imposed on it by AT&T and Apple. Doing so is risky, though. It can void your warranty..."

When iPhones were first released, and only available on AT&T, many consumers jailbroke the phone and ran it on Verizon. (This did not please Apple, AT&T, or Verizon.)

Some users wanted to access parts of the system that were not otherwise available. Jailbreaking allowed the users to access all parts of the system.

If you attempt this (and there are plenty of resources out there), be careful.

Additional Resources:
What Does It Mean to Jailbreak an iPhone? , About.com
What is Jailbreaking?, Apple iPhone School

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Vocabulary Lesson: Griefer/Griefing

A griefer is a person who deliberately harrasses or annoys someone on the Internet. This is generally used in gaming, but the term, and action, can be used in many cases wherein the Internet is involved. Griefing toes the line into hacking (because just harassing someone online would be trolling) sometimes, but usually just an extreme form of harassment. Griefing can get pretty complex (see both Wired articles below), so I've pulled these examples from Urban Dictionary:
Examples of griefing: 1. Player vs player abuse: Singling out the same person and killing them over and over when they are defensless until hey log off. 2. Kill stealing: Repeatedly trying to steal another persons kills so that their time is wasted. 3. Verbal abuse: Spamming a person with vulgar, hatefull, or offensive messages. 4. Blocking: Getting in anothers way so they cannot move or get out of a particular area. 5. "Training": Triggering many monsters, almost always impossible to fight and survive, with the intention to either run someone out of an area or kill them indirectly if the server is not 'player vs player' enabled.
It seems unlikely that an Old Person would find a need for practicing this. (I don't advise it!) But its good to know what a word means when you dive into an old issue of Wired, ready to relish its articles about vengeance.
Additional Resources:

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Culture Lesson: Planking

Planking, a "game" or "sport" performed by young, hip people ("smart asses") is when a person lays prostrate, face down, like a dead body (or a plank!) in an unexpected or awkward place.

The idea is to disturb people out and/or have a photo taken and posted on the Internet for posterity. (Young People! What will they think of next?!)

Planking has some controversy, as a 20-year-old Australian planked himself off a balcony and died after falling seven stories.

Need proof I'm not pulling your leg? Let's have CBS News explain:

I needed some clarification on the fad--I admit I don't totally get it--and my esteem friend Erin said, "It's stupid." Thanks, Erin!

I suppose if you are an Old Person, and you wanted to surprise and/or embarrass the Young People close to you, I will have assisted you. (Just do this safely.)

Additional Resources:
iPlanking.com, iPlanking.com, official site
'Planking' death puts spotlight on bizarre Web craze, CNN
Planking George Takei/, Nerdist
Chris Harwick demostrates planking by performing the meme on George Takei on Like or Dislike, What's Trending, CBSNews.com