Technological Grail Quest and some reviews too.

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There just are so many questions. I keep looking for answers and only find additional questions. I find lots of answers to some of my questions, but most are just lead ins to other questions.

Here is one, how do you stock the parts you might need for jobs, when you can't predict what jobs are and in many cases even if you can predict what the jobs might be, each one may require a different set of parts to complete. There are some things, like bulk cable, which is easy to stock, but even things like HDMI cables are hard to predict. What is a good stock HDMI cable, 25', or 12', either way you are either to short or to long, and so either way you are at a loss, except I guess to long is better than to short, but there is no cost savings there. The short answer is stock them both, but this leads out to more and more, and soon you are driving around with 2.5 ton of stock, and some you need, and some is just in case you may need it.

Also I find that stocking parts is hard to do with anything. Yet I need certain parts to make the work more profitable. Carry lots of network cables, 2' patch, 5' patch, 10' patch, 25' patch, and then of course there is plenum and non-plenum, and so on and so forth.

Now moving on, so as to look at all the variations that will be part of what I do, in all the various aspects. I quote work, sometimes, and this allows me to also quote the materials, but that doesn't account for all the variations in materials that will be needed by all the variations in work, considering the types of work I do. From computers to house renovations and rehabs, to agriculture, it is very large in scope, and I find myself sitting here, looking at all that is needed and wondering how in the hell can I make this work.

Well this is not just about such things, that is just a minute portion of what I am questioning. The bulk of what is my query, is in technology itself. I am seeking ways to make the technology a more un-obtrusive. Not hidden, but less obtrusive. The software is not quite there yet. There is no voice abilities that allow you to talk and then talk about things, and then have such things known, and sort them for what is commands and what is notes, and lastly, what is just conversation and/or thinking out loud.

Paper trails, this is a major bug to me. I have thousands of paper receipts. Now I am aware of the paper ports, but the government and specifically the IRS is not apparently, as I have to continue to keep these documents, neatly. What I would like is a paper port that would also be a shredder, so it would scan in the paper, and then shred it for recycling. However the IRS does not trust the paper dock, and so I have to keep 7 years of paper somewhere, and in truth, I have to keep it secure, and that seems just about as dumb as it gets. What happens if a fire burns up all my paper, well then that is my problem. The IRS won't accept the electronic files that have the same information, they want the paper versions. So I have to keep a paper original of every receipt and ensure that they are not in danger of burning or flood damage. My insurance will cover the loss to business that occurs, but they can't replace the paper originals. I can keep them in a fire safe building for that matter, although the cost would be prohibitive, but it doesn't prevent them from burning themselves in the fire proof building, or being damaged from flood or other "acts of god" which my insurance doesn't cover.

On the other side of that, I can keep multiple electronic copies in multiple locations for relatively reasonable cost. On the actual desktop I can keep a small immediate amount of the files, and an index to where the rest of them are. Within the server farm I have a few tetra-byte of data that includes multiple years of files, and an index of the local files and where the remote files should be kept. Using the cloud I can keep a back-up of files in cyberspace, which is okay for non-critical files. At a remote location I can keep additional backups that I can access through the cloud to my server to recover from loss, or vice versa. If something crashes, the other parts can be used to recover the parts that were damaged after they have been repaired. Multiple layers of security can be used to ensure that the data is not corrupted from other sources. Layers of encryption can be used to secure the files so that they can not be altered from their original state. The layers upon layers, and relative cost are much less and more secure than paper copies, which coincidently are not submittable to the IRS unless the originals are obtainable.

It is really an issue of trust. I trust that the electronics will not fail to the degree that the system will not be able to recover from it. The IRS trust that you will be able to produce the original paper despite all the potential for loss and damage that is there. The IRS does not trust that your electronic versions are the real versions. They assume you are making them up, even though there are numerous ways to time stamp the input of the original, and other ways to authenticate the original electronic copy that is harder to corrupt than the paper original. I can have a trusted colleague write out receipts all day for things I did not purchase, or duplicates of originals that have different dates to produce more cost than I really have, so where is the security in that.

What is next on the hit list?

Well, everything else comes back to that same thing, HUI.

Why is a pen (or a pencil if you will) user friendly. Because it does not require significant knowledge to use it. Although it might be said that it does as it does take a few years for a child to learn to use such items well, and some never do. And I guess that a pen is not very useful with out paper, or some other writing surface. This all aside, my point is that the pen and paper take very little to learn to operate and then they operate to the best of the users ability to the limits of their capability (such as how much paper you have (equate to memory) and how much ink you have (equate that to I/O throughput)). In the paper and pen computer, the human brain is the processor, so it does not off load processing from the mind, but do computers do that, not yet quite.

Computers are really fancy word processors for the most part, typewriters with memory and a pretty interface. They don't do any work, they don't innovate, or develop ideas, or invent new things, humans do that, and they use computers to replace the pen and paper portion of the equation. In rare cases computers can be tasked with basic remedial repetitive task, such as counting apples on an assembly line, but not with out extensive programing, and then they are limited to that task to do it well.

What do we want computers to do. We want them to be intuitive, or do we. Intuitive is anticipating what we want to do and then doing it for us. Thinking for us, do we really want computers to think for us. Really think about it, is that really what you want a computer to do. When you really wrap your head around it, you will discover that you really do not want the computer to think for you, in fact you don't want it to think.

I have studied the thinking machine for a long time, and have realized that a thinking machine is not what we are after, thinking is too involved. We have no problems thinking, sorting out thoughts occasionally but rarely are we short of thought. Thinking is the easy part, organizing thoughts is the hard part. So thinking is not what we want from the computer, what is it that we do want from the computer.

Obediance.

Yes, this is what we want from the computer. We want it to obey. To listen perhaps, to understand, yes, but to think, no, we want it to obey. We want it to do what we ask it to do, even if that which we ask it to do does not to the rational software programmer seem like that is what we want it to do. Spell check is a prime example. Sometimes I spell things wrong on purpose, why well different reasons really, but I want the computer to realize that I spelled the word wrong for a reason. Maybe ask, but do so in a manor that is not going to break my focus for the moment. Computers today are like 2 year olds, they can't hold their thoughts until the adult is done explaining why. They see a misspelled word and they have to note it right away. They also do not take into account, context, and that may be why the word is spelled incorrectly. It may also be that I am thinking so fast and out typing my keyboard, or my fingers, so why can't they take dictation. A fucking tape recorder can take dictation. I am not asking for it to write the shit down, that can be done later, when we transcribe the notes, I am just asking it to record the sound of my voice, accurately. Really is that so hard.

Now I want it to transcribe this recording. To turn the recording into a text document, noting the inconsistencies, and potential issues, but writing it down so that we can go over it together to correct the parts that need correction.

No, wait while it is transcribing this I want it to read to me the email, because I think something came up that may change the recording, so keep transcribing, but read to me the email from my colleague so that I can tell the computer to rewrite the part about the meeting on the second of July, and move it to the fourth of June, update my calender, and send a confirmation letter to my colleague that this change has been noted and updated. And do this all while I am working on the next thing, the next thing, because I can think faster than the laser printer can warm up.

Then there are clues, little parts of the document that I want noted because I need to research that, or I need to contact someone about that, and I need to be reminded that I need to do that. And I want it to do so in a pleasant voice that will not nag me, but will continue to remind me, as the time comes up, unless I tell it to skip it, and then it should put it on the back burner to maybe remind me at some more distant future time, that I need to address that, as it is becoming critical to some project moving forward.

I want to write a note, not type a note, but write one, but then not have to retype it to get it on the computer, and specifically to either a person to whom I want to write to, or maybe to post it to my blogger page, but maybe not this one, maybe a different blogger page than I usually post to, although I use the same email address.

Lastly for this little thing, although I will write more on this I am sure, I want to not remember passwords or sign in names, I have a name, I have a number, my computer has a name it has a number, and there are other identifying things about me, the way I talk, the way I type, and so much else, that I should not have to worry about who I am, I know who I am, and no one can really impersonate me, if the universe of knowledge is large enough. The fact is the computer knows me, if it were to track me, which it does, so why doesn't it know me, from my wife, from my children, and react accordingly, including remembering all my various sing in names and passwords on web sites, considering it knows me, and it can ID itself uniquely to the web, so why ask me, just obey.

Thank you.

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