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Messages - Gilgondorin

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Tech Zone / Re: Inexpensive Laptop Advice Wanted....
« on: February 20, 2020, 07:21:28 PM »
Windows, Apple, Google, or Linux -- whichever option you end up picking, I'd recommend you take some classes or get a younger relative or somebody to help you do something to begin brushing up your computational skills, sooner rather than later; the more you start learning now, the less catching up you'll have to do later.

In this day and age, you're going to find it increasingly hard to run a business of your own with any kind of online component, without having a reasonably good understanding of how computers and electronics work, so you can do things like post photos of your work online, advertise on the web, accept sales invoices and handle payment processing, repair your computer and recover your files in case it goes tango-uniform unexpectedly again, etc. etc. etc.

As a reminder, Windows 7 is officially no longer supported, which means you could expose yourself to some critical vulnerabilities if you try to use it. Meanwhile, Windows 10 is a relative dumpster fire; enormous security flaws and other problems are still being discovered sometimes on a month-to-month basis. Furthermore, in the old days, you used to have to go to a shady website and get a virus to make your computer unusable, but now, Microsoft is cutting out the middle man by accidentally sending out legitimate updates that you can't decline to receive (they took that option away) every so often, that will turn your computer into a paper weight for you -- no shady websites needed. :th_KO:

Off Topic Discussion (NON FIREARM RELATED) / Re: Credit Card Compromised
« on: January 08, 2020, 07:25:43 PM »
By far the easiest thing to do is just hack the retailer these days, because the processor is specifically hardened against hacking attacks more so than the retailer. It involves less leg-work, is harder to track when done properly, nets you hundreds of thousands of cards in one single convenient package instead of half a dozen, and doesn't expose you to the threat of being caught trying to install a card skimmer or using an RFID reader.

I've had four email accounts and four debit cards compromised over the years thus far because I used them to buy stuff through retailers that were legit, but with weak(er) security that made them vulnerable to hacks.

For example, I bought batteries once at Home Depot, in-store. I also used to shop at Target every once in a while (Target was my dad's Pharmacy at the time) in person. Both retailers got hacked, and the giant databases they keep of people's card info got compromised. Sure enough, about a month after each hack was discovered and announced on the news, I started seeing funny charges get run up on my card -- I was fortunate that they were small 'test' charges in the amount of $1-$2 used to see if the stolen info and cloned card worked (the huge 'new TV' charges would have come later on, had I not been paying attention), but it was still annoying as hell.

It's frustrating because per Shipwreck's example of the card in the gun safe, there's literally nothing you can do -- no amount of security consciousness -- that can truly prevent your card from getting hacked except not having one or using it in the first place thanks to the trend these days of retailers keeping records of people's card info for data mining and tracking purposes.

Politics, Gripes, Complaints / Re: Trump Impeachment!
« on: December 24, 2019, 07:48:23 PM »
On the subject of the Impeachment Proceedings being a smoke screen for other goings on: That's a big f***ing "Duh", Red Rider(s). :th_thicon_lol:

So far the Impeachment Proceedings have:

1.) Been used to conceal the fact that funding for the border wall was authorized:

2.) Been used to conceal in the fact that in that same bill aimed at preventing a Government shutdown (and despite formerly being happy to force Government shutdowns until it started making them look bad to their voters), the Dems also helped renew the Patriot Act, and its rampant warrant-less surveillance:

3.) Been used to conceal the fact that a 2,000 page document dump recently revealed that the US Government -- under both Republican and Democrat presidents -- systematically lied to and deceived the American people into believing the 18 years we spent in Afghanistan would do us any good:

4.) Been used to draw any attention away from the fact that top political leadership in Virginia wants to essentially declare war on law abiding gun owners there, by attempting to hide behind and use the national guard as their bully:

5.) Been used to draw attention away from the fact that the Media may have helped cover up the Epstein Child Sex Trafficking Ring:

6.) Been used to call attention away from the fact that the DOJ has authorized the Feds to take the money earned from the book published by Edward Snowden detailing the US Government's secret surveillance and mass unwarranted collection the American people's communication data:

7.) And finally (thus far, anyway), been used to cover up the increasingly apparent fact that the Democratic party is beginning to eat itself alive in public:
(On a side note: Julian Castro is making me sick to be from the same city he was formerly mayor of. I saw him the other day complaining on TV about how people not donating enough to his campaign being the likely explanation for any future failure on his part. It's like he's saying "We need more cash!! Don't actually do anything to get out here and help anybody like put forward a moderate/centrist candidate, just shut up and give us your money!"

The odds are high that the Impeachment will be quashed, and Trump will be exonerated. Moreover, as someone suggested, to put a nice pretty little bow on this box of misdirection and deception, the Dems will likely use the whole issue as nothing more than mud to sling during the reelection campaign: "There have only been 3 people in the entire history of our great nation that have been impeached before. You can only be impeached for being very naughty!! Why would you in good conscience vote for somebody who has been impeached!? Do you hate freedom!? Vote for us instead!!"

Gun News & Laws / Re: Check out this video
« on: December 14, 2019, 03:28:34 PM »
Though they refuse to say anything one way or another in response to the issue, I'd almost like to see this play fully out.

Suppose the N.G. refuses to do anything in support of the order............ What recourse will these dips***s have then? Other than to realize they may order up all the gun control they want, but nobody -- not even the National Guard -- will actually enforce it, effectively leaving them powerless to enforce their flagrantly anti-constitutional bulls***.

We know they wouldn't, but could you imagine the humor in them storming up to local law enforcement to snivel and cry at them angrily, only to be handed a vest and a rifle and told "Alright, your first house is up there on that hill -- the guy's a big bore Class 3 enthusiast, so even though he's the hell up there and we're down here, you should know that you even being able to see the house from here in the first place means we're already well within range. Here's some free Kevlar, courtesy of the department; it's mostly for moral support, because there's no way in hell it would ever stand up to a direct hit from anything HE'S packing. I'd hurry and put that s*** on if I were you by the way, because by not having fired yet, he's either being gentlemanly and giving you a sporting chance, or more likely, giving us time to get the hell away. Let us know how it goes; we're out this motherf****er!! Peace!!"

IMO, hamburgers are suppose to be beef. I'm not a vegan, or vegetarian, so I won't even consider it.

On the other end of the spectrum, I'll eat it if it tastes good. Being vegan or not vegan makes no difference to me (mind you, I haven't found much vegan stuff that tastes worth a damn).

I'm gonna try it eventually, but, I'm going to order a Texas Double Whopper with plenty of onions, bacon, and Jalapenos just in case it tastes disgusting, because I love Burger King.

General Gun Discussion / Re: Poll: "*Arsenal*" or pathetic?
« on: November 24, 2019, 07:15:34 AM »
I'm ignorant on some things but what weapon pictured uses the "banana" magazines?

This was my first thought as well, and the answer is it's a trick question: Nothing pictured here uses them; they are magazines to be used with a specially modified SKS:

Either he owned an SKS at some point and sold it but forgot about the magazines, he only bought them with the intention to resell at a later time, or, this isn't the only bunker that guy has.

This is a really weird story. That he was able to live there that long undetected really is kinda funny in its own way, even if the guy definitely looks like he's got a few screws loose.

May his family find the strength to endure in this time of great tragedy.

Rest in peace, SC.

Tech Zone / Re: No spam calls with I phone updated to iOS 13
« on: November 16, 2019, 12:21:44 AM »
I manually add to block list,, which I just looked,, it's a very long list.

Unless I'm mistaken, adding a number to your block list in an effort to combat spamming calls in particular is an exercise in futility.

Spammers/scammers these days use software to "spoof" phone numbers when they make calls, which means they can make one phone number -- theirs -- LOOK like a different phone number to your phone's caller ID each time they call, specifically because they know you'll just block one number after getting a spam call if you keep getting calls from that same number. This method effectively gives them an unlimited pool of numbers -- effectively EVERY phone number on Earth, including even your own (as has happened to me once) -- to use to spam you with, and practically no real defense against it other than simply not to answer.

More often than not, spammers -- which often times set up their operations out of the country and therefore US legal jurisdiction -- deliberately use phone numbers that are dead-ends, disconnected, or not in service so as to make it even harder to report them to the police. On the occasions where spammers DO spoof the working phone number of a legitimate person, that individual may not even realize someone was pretending to make calls from it.

It's gotten so bad that it's made the news MULTIPLE times within the last couple of weeks here in San Antonio. Somehow the scummy bastards have figured out how to spoof the number to City Public Services (the city electric company), and have been making spam calls to thousands of people in town. They even called me personally, disguising their number as the legitimate, working, publicly listed business phone number for CPS Energy: (210)353-2222. My phone even recognized it as being CPS because I have it saved to my contacts list. Though I knew better than to fall for the bull (they pretend your payments somehow haven't been getting processed correctly for the last couple of months, and that they're going to disconnect your services in 30 minutes if you don't pay up $___.__ immediately), they've apparently successfully defrauded other customers out of hundreds of thousands of dollars already.

Blocking numbers is really only useful these days for blocking people -- actual human people -- that are harassing you and don't have the technical know-how to disguise their caller ID info. Though normally Apple is anathema to Gilgondorin, they should at least still be commended for trying to do something about this annoying bulls*** because it's starting to get insanely out of hand. I'm up to usually a minimum of 3, and sometimes up to as many as 10 spam calls per day, which is really frustrating because -- like Shield45 -- I can't tell which calls to answer and which to ignore, because a lot of people often call me that aren't on my contacts list.

You got me to actually facepalm the moment I saw the thread title. What a dips***.

Off Topic Discussion (NON FIREARM RELATED) / Re: Smooth Criminal
« on: November 04, 2019, 10:23:49 PM »
Saw this when it first hit the news last year, and showed it to my coworkers; they almost herniated something laughing so hard.

What gets me is the ridiculous little door kick. What an idiot.

Gun News & Laws / Re: ..2nd amendment victory..
« on: October 30, 2019, 06:41:31 AM »
On the radio yesterday morning, we heard there were six others.

At first, I thought y'all was playing, or at least over exaggerating about how bad Houston is.... Then, Gilgondorin FINALLY set foot here yesterday (a day trip to see a metal band), and saw the downtown and East Central areas.

For what it's worth, I was impressed with the speed and relative convenience of getting around town on the public transit system though, specifically the metro rail, which cut me across the heart of downtown in almost 10 minutes; it was almost like fast traveling in a video game. We could do with that here.

Politics, Gripes, Complaints / Re: Wife told me about this :..
« on: October 15, 2019, 12:49:51 PM »
Was talking to a coworker about this last night. I'm in agreement when he says it doesn't surprise me one bit.

On the other hand, I wouldn't doubt that when they input that little comment "ABC news acquired this video footage", it meant that somebody -- probably from a gun forum or gun club somewhere, ironically enough -- likely presented the video as being battlefield footage, and ABC being desperate to get the scoop and edge out the competition by showing a video with lots of explosions and tracers, jumped at the chance to pay to license it.

What with the tracers and two fireballs, it would have been a very impressive and dramatic clip if it had been real. :th_thicon_lol: :th_thicon_lol:

General Gun Discussion / Re: What would you do?
« on: October 06, 2019, 12:49:20 AM »
In conversations I've either had personally or overheard over the last decade, many different street-level beat cops have all basically said the philosophy of self defense from THEIR standpoint as law enforcement is "If you shoot, you'd better hope A.) you have a fence around your yard, and (NOT "or") B.) you'd better hope you hit him badly enough that can't make it back over the fence. If he's inside it, it's an open and shut case -- he's in your property and that's that. If he makes it back over the fence or collapses out in the middle of the street, you're probably going to spend the next __ years and a giant pile of money going back and forth in court trying to fend off accusations that he might not have ever actually been on your property at all."

With that in mind, and factoring in the changing political climate in this state as a modifier, Gilgondorin is working on implementing a three step solution to deal with the problem:
1.) Hit the lotto
2.) Sell this house (immediately)
2.) Follow Tango's example and buy another one out in the middle of nowhere far away from other people, so that we can avoid dealing with this s*** in the first place

Progress thus far is slow, but optimism is still high.

(We would probably actually get faster results just going with plan B instead -- a giant moat of lava -- but that would make getting porch deliveries unnecessarily difficult and I'm not sure the neighbors would be down with it.  :P)

A consolation prize for any of you that, like I, have ever been annoyed by a Craigslist bum:

Politics, Gripes, Complaints / Re: Wow, Piers Morgan on Liberals
« on: September 25, 2019, 01:16:16 AM »
Seems like the only take-away was that he's upset the monster has broken loose and the Democratic party longer holds control over it.

They were fine and dandy when the mobs were out terrorizing conservatives, but now that they're no longer safe now too AND their party's unity is threatened, suddenly it's no longer tolerable anymore.

And anyway, didn't he say he was going to move to Europe in protest if Trump got elected?

Tech Zone / Re: ..I hate windows 10 !..
« on: September 15, 2019, 06:38:32 PM »
I wrote software early in my career and would offer a little different perspective:
The “planned obsolescence“ is less true than competitive market forces and greater capabilities that customers demand.

Perhaps, but even then that doesn't account for Apple charging more than twice the money for one of their computers than a Windows-equipped computer with similar specs, or vice versa with Android-equipped mobile devices, other than their stuff has a focus on being compact and sleek.

In regards to Windows 10, I don't think there's going to be that big a learning curve for you to figure out the OS. They learned their lesson after Windows 8 and went back to a more Windows 7-like experience; there's a few added tweaks, but nothing extreme like having the stupid tile UI that Windows 8 did.

Tech Zone / Re: ..I hate windows 10 !..
« on: September 15, 2019, 08:09:43 AM »
Good luck with switching to Mac.

Gone are the days where you could buy a single Mac and get along with it forever -- now their business model is 'planned obsolescence' where they purposefully make newer programs resource-intensive enough that anything with hardware older than 2-3 years is deliberately hobbled to the point it can't keep up anymore, forcing you to buy a newer device at significant cost, or go insane. In fact, they got in huge trouble a year or two ago for secretly purposefully spiking their own devices via a software update that would make hardware run incredibly slow, then coming up with the bulls*** cover story of saying they did it to 'maximize the usability of older batteries with lower lifespans' when they got caught. Since you have lots of money, you may not have as much of an issue with Apple, so long as you ignore the fact that you're basically being ranched for money like a cow.

My sister's iPad from only 2-3 years ago runs like frozen molasses. Her iPhone 8, which is only 2 generations behind the formerly current iPhone 10 (which is already being supplanted by the iPhone 11 just recently announced, which is pointless to buy because all the new cool technology like 5G connectivity won't come until 2021 with the iPhone 12, and all they did this year was add a third, mostly superfluous camera to the iPhone 11) runs like an elderly sloth.

At this point you're essentially looking at the following:

Mind you, I'm not necessarily for Windows 10 either.

Even some of the major tech blogs are beginning to suggest that it's better to shut off Windows 10's automatic updates and only install them days or even weeks later, because Microsoft has been having problems over the last year or two in which they churned out updates that either A.) Brick your system irreparably, B.) Do screwy things like delete your personal files by mistake, or C.) Corrupt your OS. Waiting days or even weeks gives enough other poor bastards elsewhere in the world the time to act as guinea pigs and accidentally step on enough land mines that Microsoft finally figures out where they screwed up and go back and patch their own software patches.

If you absolutely NEED Photoshop, you're probably stuck using a newer edition whose user interface is probably nothing like the old one you were accustomed to. Same goes for the flight sim. Both are likely gonna cost you a pretty penny to buy something new enough that it is either supported by Windows 10 (....for the time being.....) or it was developed specifically for use with Windows 10.

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