Posts Tagged ‘microsoft’

Everyone loves to blame the big, bad capitalists at Microsoft, seldom acknowledging when they do something right or when their product is wrongly suspected…

Browsing around and reading blogs, I came upon a few that would not display properly. I mean really bad. Headers, menus, columns, and navigation missing or whacked.

Screenshots of the same page with and without tracking protection

I wrote to a couple of webmasters telling them they had a problem with their site and received some kind msgs back saying it looks okay so everything must be fixed now. I revisit. Still whack. Now my OCD kicks in and I want it to work right, dammit! I open the Firefox browser and look at those pages again. Wow! They look fine here. But I like Internet Explorer. Like my 13-year-old car, I’m familiar with it.

Summoning my pseudo-geek persona, I search for ‘IE9 display problems’ and come up with a ton of forums and discussion boards with several people complaining about the same thing. All the answers said it was an IE9 bug and recommended Google Chrome or Firefox or Safari instead. That wasn’t gonna work for me.

I started thinking about changes I’d made recently since this problem just started happening. After Sunday’s discovery of Google’s intrusive method of tracking me, I beefed up tracking protection in IE9, adding http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/Browser/p3p/google.txt. BTW, they were all blogger.com/blogspot sites. In case you don’t know, blogger.com belongs to Google. Since that was something new, I disabled it. Dayum! THE PAGES ARE NOW DISPLAYING CORRECTLY IN INTERNET EXPLORER!!!

Yes kids, if you don’t let Google track you, you don’t get to look at stuff they control. Like blogs on blogger.com. For all my friends who still use blogger.com, come on over to WordPress. You deserve more respect.

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Doing some ‘puter/’net housekeeping chores, I attempted to log on to my Google account. Something I haven’t done in a very long time. I couldn’t complete the task because I have cookies blocked on my ‘puter. Well, not completely. I have to give permission for 3rd-party cookies to be stored on my computer. You should do that too and I’ll show you why.

Go to Google’s Privacy Policies. You don’t have read the techno-babble or legalese. Just read the section under the “Information we collect” heading. Got the heebie-jeebies yet? If you said no, did you read far enough to see where they say they may collect info about your mobile phone, including phone calls, people you call, GPS coordinates of where you are, etc.? Is your phone or your next phone an Android?

If not, try this one… Google’s info blurb about the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI). You can OPT OUT of advertisers placing cookies that track your online behavior and “tailor” advertising to your interests and habits.

I’m really rethinking that Google account. It seems I need it for Youtube, but there aren’t any other services they provide that isn’t available somewhere else with less intrusive practices. I don’t even use their search engine… Check out yippy.com. It’s a great search engine that groups results into clouds. They are adamant about not tracking your behavior or collecting information about you. They’ve also got parental controls/filtering if you need that. Open-mouthed smile

Even Microsoft’s Bing.com is better about respecting your privacy. Check out Microsoft’s Privacy Policies. And their map tool is much nicer than Google Maps.

P.S. I seemed to recall and have now verified that the Android operating system software development is open source but Google is leading it. To quote from the Android website FAQ: “…Google has committed the professional engineering resources necessary to ensure that Android is a fully competitive software platform. Google treats the Android project as a full-scale product development operation, and strikes the business deals necessary to make sure that great devices running Android actually make it to market.”

That new cell phone may just be an iPhone or a Windows phone instead.