DIGITAL AMERICA

Author Archives: Kaitlyn

Electronic Waste

// Posted by Kaitlyn on 06/11/2015 (2:59 PM)

I never really thought about what happened to my old electronics when I got rid of them. After this week’s reading and videos I am shocked to know that our old electronics could be harming other people and their… Read more

I never really thought about what happened to my old electronics when I got rid of them. After this week’s reading and videos I am shocked to know that our old electronics could be harming other people and their environment. I was also shocked to read that these electronic designers are only aiming for their product to last around 5 years.

I think that one way that we could improve the amount of electronics’ that are thrown away each year is by making the products with better parts. If these products are made to last then maybe people will want to keep them longer. I know that this might not always be the case because people may still want the newest product but we could try it. I think a good example is with IPhone’s. Rather than needing to get the actual newest phone, Apple allows you to download the newest operating system on the same older phone. This way you have the most advanced version, just maybe not the latest version of the phone itself.

I can say that I have craved the newest and latest electronic but I usually waited until mine bit the dust before I invested in a new one. I will say though that if I did invest in the newest and latest electronic I would sell/give mine to a friend or give it back to Verizon to refurbish rather than throwing it away. I heard about a program on the radio that allowed people to trade in their old phones to be sent overseas for the soldiers who were away. I think this is an awesome idea and that more companies should practice similar waste managements.

Another suggestion I would have to this crisis is making electronic companies have a department that tends to the old electronics that are being tossed. These company should be required to have a branch of their business that deals with breaking down these old products for recycle. If the company did not want to do this they could be required to give money to another company whose job is to dispose of old electronics.

I think that overall we need to become more aware of this growing issue. With the advancements in technology and want for the newest products I can only imagine how out of hand this problem is going to get in the coming years. People should be worried about this because of the sicknesses that people are encountering in underdeveloped countries. We are responsible for getting these people sick and they cannot afford to get the medical attention they need. Not only are we hurting these people but we are hurting the environment. We cannot recreate the environment so we need to be sure to take care of the one we have.


Categories: Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Stock Market

// Posted by Kaitlyn on 06/04/2015 (11:02 AM)

I recently got involved with stocks and bonds so this week’s reading was interesting to me. I always envisioned people standing around frantically waiting for the prices of stock to change so they could buy or sell accordingly. I… Read more

I recently got involved with stocks and bonds so this week’s reading was interesting to me. I always envisioned people standing around frantically waiting for the prices of stock to change so they could buy or sell accordingly. I suppose I got this vision from watching movies about the stock exchange floors on Wall Street. It never occurred to me that with advancements in technology that this could be done on a computer.

According to the article “Raging Bulls” leading up to 1970 stock exchange was done by telegraphic stock tickers and telephone calls. The article “High Frequency Trading” states that investors had to call brokerage firms in order to make trades and the firms would then have to call to the stock exchange floor to actually make the trade happen. This was a very time consuming task. With the advancements in technology this has now changed to being done on the computer by algorithms. The article “Raging Bulls” states that this is a good thing because “computers never get bored so they will haggle more than the person would.”

The articles seemed to try to persuade me the stock market going digital was a good thing. One example from “Raging Bulls” is that this was a good thing because computers can make the trades happen a lot faster than humans could. Another example from “High Frequency Trading” was that computers are more reliable than people. Another example that I have found in my dealings with the stock market is now that they are on the computer I can find out the price of stock much faster. Some people still go to the newspaper to look at prices but it is a lot easier for me to just do a quick Internet search.

Although those example seem to be positive I still worry about hackers. If hackers can hack into our computers and steal information then couldn’t they mess with the stock market? I found my answer in this week’s reading of “Raging Bulls.” I read that hackers can get into the stock exchange and input algorithms that could mess up the whole stock market. This seems to make me wonder if going digital was worth it?


Categories: Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Hackers

// Posted by Kaitlyn on 05/28/2015 (5:56 PM)

This weeks reading was very eye opening for me. I am not one to watch the news every day but in the past few semester I have taken courses that require me to become more knowledgeable in what is going… Read more

This weeks reading was very eye opening for me. I am not one to watch the news every day but in the past few semester I have taken courses that require me to become more knowledgeable in what is going on in the world around me. I guess growing up in this digital age I assumed that the technology had always been around and was not new to people. One mind-blowing fact I learned this week was that there are people being paid to hack into others computers to see what they are doing. While reading this week I went back and forth as to whether I agreed with the idea of Stuxnet and how it was hacked. It also made me go back and forth on my thoughts about Snowden as there are people from both situations that were thought of as trying to sabotage our nation.

The difference between Snowden and Stuxnet to me is that Snowden was trying to help our country and Stuxnet was a virus aimed to attack another country. As an American I agree with both because they are both helping to protect our country. Nuclear warfare is not a new fear for the United States. We have feared this type of attack for a long time. This is the reason why Stuxnet was created. The government was trying to protect our country against this type of attack. The reason that I went back and forth as to whether I agreed with hackers is because of the fact that they are paid to do try to hurt others work. I realize though that the creators of Stuxnet were also hackers so I guess I am still undecided if the idea is positive for the greater good or negative.

I can only imagine the scramble that the creators of Stuxnet were in when they realized that hackers had started to decode their system. It amazes me that there are people who are paid to hack these systems. Moreover it is crazy to me how much money people are paid when they do find a zero day in a system. I think that this is a good skill to have but only if it is used for the right reason.

I liked the idea of the Idefense that we read about. This was where hackers could turn in the information they had discovered about zerodays to a safe place. I think that there should be more incentive to have people do this because I am sure many people are selling to the black market just because they get the most money. As the world is changing and technology is advancing I think that more people should get involved in the information technology system as it seems that it is a career that will always have an opening.


Categories: Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , ,

My opinion on Snowden

// Posted by Kaitlyn on 05/26/2015 (8:26 PM)

Edward Snowden is referred to as a whistleblower. We all know why he is a whistleblower and have our own opinions as to whether what he did was right or wrong. In my personal opinion I believe what he did… Read more

Edward Snowden is referred to as a whistleblower. We all know why he is a whistleblower and have our own opinions as to whether what he did was right or wrong. In my personal opinion I believe what he did was right. He did what he did in order to protect our country and not let the government take complete control over our lives. He has no benefit in his decision, he really lost everything he had in order to try to save our country.

What the NSA was doing is against the law. They are invading innocent people’s privacy without any type of legal ramifications. I feel that the NSA thought what they were doing was for the good of our country by trying to stay on top of terrorists but they took it too far. They were abusing their power as a government agency and by paying computer technicians hack into illegal territories. The NSA knew that they needed a warrant for wiretapping but they did not obtain a warrants before wiretapping. It seems that they just got carried away listening to everyone’s conversations and looking at everyone’s emails and text messages because they were not only looking into the United States citizens information, but at people from all over the world.

Working in the legal field makes this topic especially interesting to me, especially with the advancement in technology. Technology is ever changing and growing but unfortunately the law does not change as fast. The law takes time to catch up with technological advances but people should be able to use their own judgment as to whether or not something seems to be illegal. In this case wiretapping without a warrant was against the law.  Probable cause was needed in order for a search warrant to be issued for the government to wiretap and this was not happening. According to the article from Wired after Snowden released his information the government put a hold of warrantless wiretapping of cell phone and email records, it also states this is one thing that would never have happened if it were not for Snowden.

Many people may think that Snowden did this to destroy our country; some even consider him as a terrorist himself. People have considered him a terrorist because he told other countries what we were doing to them, which could have in turn, caused a way between the US and other countries or caused a lack of trust and relationship. I do not agree with these peoples opinion because I still think Snowden was acting in our best interest when he released this information. The other countries deserved to know that they were being watched because it was uncalled for by the US. If we trust these countries and have alliances with them than we should trust they would not turn on us. Like I said before Snowden was not gaining anything out of this other than hope that the government will change for the betterment of his family and friends he left behind in the US.

Another reason I believe that Snowden was not doing this for his own self is because he carefully chose when he released to the public. He took a lot of time and go through documents in order to see what needed to be released. He took into consideration information with people’s personal stuff and tried to protect individual’s identity. According to the Wired article Snowden also tried to leave a trail of what information he copied and what information he just touched in order to give the government a better understanding of what he had taken and what they needed to focus on.

Snowden held out for a couple of years before releasing the information hoping that change would come and there would be a stop to the corruption. All of the articles we have read talk about how he though the Obama administration would be different but it was not. His last straw was when he found out about a new storage center in Bluffdale, Utah. This was going to be a place that would store so much date and essential be like a cloud of all date taken for the NSA. This was going to take the invasion to a whole new level and Snowden was not happy about it. I believe that if Snowden had not have come clean that there would be a lot of damage that would have been done at this new storage facility. People are focusing on the negative effects that Snowden brought but imagine if he had not come clean and so much information was accumulated in Bluffdale that could be even more damaging when released by him or another whistleblower. There is a time and place for everything and I think that Snowden was ready to get the guilt off of his chest.

Throughout my readings on Snowden from this class and other classes it seems that the reporters and media outlets have really worked hard to get the answers we want to hear. I can’t imagine being one of the reporters that was given all of this information and trying to figure out what to do with it. It seems like for the most part it was handled in the best way possible considering nothing like this had happened before. I am sure that it was hard for the average person to believe some random person that the government was doing these bad things but thankfully it was given to someone who had the knowledge to decrypt the information and figure out that what Snowden was saying was true. Overall I stick to my opinion that what he did was right and we now know that we have no privacy.

 

PS- I had two pictures to add but I could not get them to upload, I kept getting an error message.


Categories: Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Week 2

// Posted by Kaitlyn on 05/21/2015 (4:08 PM)

The part of chapter 5 that I found most interesting was the description of the women’s role on the WELL. I found it very interesting that there was even a group called Women of the Well (WOW). The WELL… Read more

The part of chapter 5 that I found most interesting was the description of the women’s role on the WELL. I found it very interesting that there was even a group called Women of the Well (WOW). The WELL was a place for women to go and engage in discussions and establish their own conversations about new topics. This was a big deal for women during this time.

One reason that this was a big deal for women during this time is because according to the book women during this time were mostly confined to cooking, cleaning, and raising children. There was still a gender divide between men and women’s duties and responsibilities. The WELL gave women the opportunity to expand their knowledge and think about stuff other than household duties. There were not only women who were engaging in discussions but also women who were in leadership roles on the WELL which was a major accomplishment for that time. One female writer on the WELL described her experience as feeling like the WOW was like her extended family that she could talk and ask questions too.

The WELL/WOW was not only a place for these women to write for pleasure, some women were also finding employment through their writings on the WELL. There were many instances in the chapter that described how the WELL gave economic growth to people through writing and research. Freelance writers could use the WELL to find research to make their articles more interesting. Other writers were being discovered due to their writings on the WELL.

Although most of the women felt the WELL was a positive thing there was one women who did not. Susan Herring wrote a paper that was published on the WELL about how women were at a disadvantage online. The debate went on for about 2 years. Most women did not agree with her arguments and they continued to participate on the WELL.


Categories: Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Week 1

// Posted by Kaitlyn on 05/14/2015 (11:08 AM)

Perceptions of the Internet-

My perception of the Internet has changed a lot since our first class meeting. I will be completely honest that before our discussion in class I just assumed that Google was the Internet. I was aware… Read more

Perceptions of the Internet-

My perception of the Internet has changed a lot since our first class meeting. I will be completely honest that before our discussion in class I just assumed that Google was the Internet. I was aware that there were other websites you could go to search such as Yahoo and Bing but I rarely used them so I just thought they were not as powerful as Google. Whenever I open the Internet I go directly to Google. I do this on my personal Apple laptop and work Dell computer. Google is not necessarily set as my home page but I always type it in the search bar and then go find what I am looking for through Google. It makes since now that we have talked about how Google is a search engine and not the Internet as a whole. Another perception I have for the Internet is that it is a place I can go and ask any question and find many different answers. I am aware that not all the answers I find will be correct but I know that I can get a better understanding of something if I search for it on the Internet. From taking classes here at U of R I have always learned that the Internet is not a private place. There is no one monitoring what is put on the Internet and for the most part no rules as to what people can do. Most people would be considerate to others by not hacking into their computer and stealing their personal information but there are some people who have no respect for others and will take any information they can find and use it to their advantage. Another perception I have of the Internet is anything done on the Internet never goes away. My understanding is that once you have typed something on the Internet that it will always be linked back to you no matter what. I feel that there are still many things that I have to learn about the Internet and I look forward to learning more through this class.

Rules of engagement-

One suggestion I would have for rules of engagement for our weekly at home activity would be to have a minimum and maximum word count for all posts. This way we can make sure that our posts are not too lengthy to the point that people do not read them. I think that a fair requirement for minimum post would be 150 words and a maximum of 500 words. Another suggestion that I would have would be to make a deadline during the week for a post to be due and a few days later a due date for the response. It is understood that we are all professionals and have families but we need to make sure we post our work before Sunday night so that classmates are able to engage in a discussion and ask questions about posts. The most important rule that I would suggest is for everyone to make sure there post and responses are always respectful. Everyone comes from a different background with different cultures so not everyone may agree on a particular issue. We should respect other people’s opinion when responding to their posts.


Categories: Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,