technology

Alternatives to Firefox on Manjaro Linux

6 minute read Updated

A quick rundown of Firefox browser alternatives you should be aware of.

Last week Firefox suffered multiple zero-day vulnerabilities, prompting renewed interest in a browser discussion thread on the Manjaro Forums.

Ironically the reason I’m using Manjaro in the first place is because macOS itself had several zero-day vulnerabilities recently, prompting me to perform a serious back-up of macOS and all my files on iCloud.

Thankfully switching browsers is trivial compared to switching operating systems on macOS. So herein I’ll show you how to easily install a few different browsers so you can try them out and decide for yourself which you prefer.

Beyond Incognito

2 minute read Updated

Block your computer from making requests to known ad and malware servers.

I read an article on Medium titled How to encrypt your entire life in less than an hour. The article provided a number of tips for staying secure digitally. One of the tips was to use the Tor browser because popular browsers such as Safari and Chrome were not private enough – even in private mode.

What the author didn’t tell you was that it’s possible to increase your privacy without switching browsers using Dan Pollock's hosts file. A quick look at the file describes exactly what it does…

When I Stopped Trusting Apple

3 minute read Published

How I lost my trust for Apple as an American, and what I'm doing about it.

Trust is like the stock market. Escalator up, elevator down. When an individual places trust in something they typically do so because that trust has been won through unwavering commitment over time. When we speak of brand trust – or trust with a company – committed relationships work much the same. Especially as that trust applies to technology in an era of cloud.

But here’s the thing about trust. If it’s not built with transparency, it is created under false pretenses – smoke and mirrors – and, in the long-term, will never stand. This is the unfortunate case with Apple. And here I will explain exactly when I stopped trusting them and why, and what I’m doing about it.

How to Make a Branded URL Shortener

3 minute read Updated

Learn how to make your own branded tiny URLs for your website or blog.

Tiny URLs, otherwise known as short links. We’ve all used them to shorten URLs. Sometimes for sharing y2u.be videos. Or to make some cheese using amzn.to. Perhaps even to view someone else’s analytics data. And though some may lead you to believe short URLs can be dangerous, used thoughtfully they make a useful addition in your link building strategy. Learn how to make your own branded tiny URLs free in under 5 minutes.

Managing Async Dependencies with JavaScript

4 minute read Updated

Managing asynchronous dependencies with JavaScript can be a nightmare. But there's a better way. It's called Fetch Injection.

I’ve long been inspired by the work of Steve Souders. Back in 2009 Steve published an article titled Loading Scripts Without Blocking, which I first became aware of and studied during my time at Orbitz – where every millisecond a user waited for the page to load had a measurable impact to the business.

Steve’s work was instrumental for performance-critical websites and apps, and even inspired Nicholas C. Zakas to write Loading JavaScript without Blocking the same month Steve’s book Even Faster Web Sites was published.

Secure Your Digital Life

8 minute read Updated

Safeguard your privacy online. Arm yourself with knowledge and use these tips, tools and techniques to secure your digital life.

I’m no Steve Wozniak but I carry a healthy distrust of computers. After hearing of the Equifax data breach affecting the privacy of more than 145 million Americans, learning Uber paid and tried to cover up the loss of 57 million driver and passenger records and seeing the lasting impact of the Meltdown attack I’m starting to understand the gravity this quote from Woz:

4 Years Without Facebook

3 minute read Updated

How social media controls you. From a free-thinker in a society controlled by social media.

After a four year hiatus, I recently rejoined Facebook to give it another shot. Here’re some insights I gained since I left.

Take Flight with the Monero CLI Wallet

3 minute read Published

Be your own bank. Store your secure, private and untraceable cryptocurrency and keep it safe from prying eyes. Learn to take flight with the Monero CLI wallet.

Monero is a secure, private, and untraceable cryptocurrency. It is open-source and accessible to all. With Monero, you are your own bank. Only you control and are responsible for your funds. Your accounts and transactions are kept private from prying eyes. Learn how to install the Monero CLI wallet. There’s only one way…

Arise, you have nothing to lose but your barbed wire fences!

Timothy C. May, The Crypto Anarchist Manifesto

Spoofing IoT Device MAC Addresses

2 minute read Updated

Connecting devices like the RPi or Apple TV to public networks requiring browser-based auth can be a drag. But that shouldn't stop you from hacking your way in. Find out how.

Imagine your sitting at a cafe on some exotic island after your last visa run to Sim Lim Square in Singapore where you picked up a CCTV Wi-Fi camera to protect your valuables and nerd out on gadgets.

You unbox your new toy only to realize you can’t connect it because the cafe you’re sitting at is using a captive portal.

Gah! What to do… Shell into the device and use wget or curl? Fuggetaboutit.

You reach into your Tortuga carry-on bag, pull out your laptop and do the only sensible thing you can think of—spoof the device’s MAC address.

Here’s how to spoof the MAC address of an IoT device using macOS.

11 Hacks to Erupt Some Bitcoin Right Now

4 minute read Updated

Don't buy Bitcoin, Volcano Boy! Make it spew out with these 11 easy hacks.

Jamie Dimon may believe Bitcoin’s ‘a fraud’ but I know a few CoinSheet enthusiasts who would beg to disagree. If you’re like me you might not be able to afford to buy Bitcoin. And no Bitcoin, no LaMbO… Not to worry though! I’m going to lay down 11 simple hacks to earn free bitcoin without breaking open the piggy bank.

Essential Image Optimization

1 minute read Published

An open source ebook from Addy Osmani on modern image optimization techniques. Formats, decoders, techniques for efficient compression and more are covered.