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Thursday, October 27, 2016

I want a new Internet

I spend a couple of hours a day at my computer (ok, more like 50 or 60), and most of that time I spend on the net. And there are a couple of things I've noticed that could be improved.

  • Passwords and Logon ID's. Everybody wants to know who I am, and most of them I don't care whether they know who I am or not*, but I don't like having to have a separate logon id and password for all of these sites. The ISP (Frontier, I'm looking at you) should validate who you are and then dole out this information as necessary. Someone would need to insure that telling some flake in a Florida boiler room who you are doesn't give them access to your back account, but there are plenty of smart people in the world and I'm sure someone could come up with a scheme.
  • Subscriptions. Everybody wants you to subscribe. I wouldn't mind subscribing, but once you subscribe to one it's much easier to justify subscribing to another, and then another and pretty soon you're shelling out 50 or 100 bucks a month, and I ain't gonna do that, so I don't subscribe to anything. I wouldn't mind paying $10 a month in order to get access to everything. I mean, if I have a subscription to one place, like the WSJ, I would spend all my time there. If I had two subscriptions my time would be split between the two, so I would be accessing each one only half as much. Likewise if I had ten subscriptions. The ISP should collect $10 a month from you and then dole it out to the websites on the basis of how many times you visit that site.
  • Metric versus English measurements. Every article that attempts to contain any information inevitably contains numbers, and any time there are numbers some people seem to think they need to provide values using both English and Metric units. I don't need both. Give me one or give me the other. HTML should be able to handle this. Actually, it probably already can, we just need a publishing program that can handle the conversion automatically.
  • Better History. Your browser keeps track of every page you visit, which is pretty worthless. I don't need you to record all my visits to Gmail, or YouTube, or most Google sites. I would like a list of all the other sites I have visited, especially Wikipedia. There may be a browser extension out there that will take care of this, but I haven't found one. I've tried a couple and they haven't really done the trick. I will probably have to write my own. Soon. Right after I finish this donut.
  •  Better Search Options. When I am looking for images, I don't want any with watermarks, and I don't want anything from Pinterest*. This might be achievable using my current search engine (Google), but I haven't looked in it, mostly because I haven't had much luck with fancy search options.
  • Blacklist. This goes along with the previous item. Everyday I run into a website that I never want to go to again, mostly because they are so bloated with adware that they take forever to load. Some of them never stop. I want to be able to blackflag them (sort of reverse gold star) so if I ever try to access that site again I will get a warning. Actually, I want my browser to warn me any time I try to load such a page, even if I've never been there before.
  • Limited Page Length. Every once in a while I will run into a web page that has no end. Facebook is like that. The end is usually where you can find contact information, so you can complain about things like there being no end to this web page, except you can't get the contact info, because you can't get to the end because there is no end. Blackflag this bitch.
*Except Pinterest. Seems like half of the pictures that turn up on a Google image search are from Pinterest, but Pinterest sucks. They only show you a teaser and if you try to get any more information they put up a sign-up wall. Nothing more until you sign up. I am pretty sure I don't want to have anything to do with Pinterest because there is no information about the pictures. People post stuff because they like it, but they don't tell you who shot the photo, where it was taken or anything. Stupid dumbheads.

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