Wednesday, March 2, 2022

When good technology goes BAD!

 I was going to say there is nothing quilt-related today, but that would be a lie. There is something --just wait for it. 

Yesterday, I thought I was going to go mad because of technology. I love my smartphone, and like all of you, I use it a fair bit. But yesterday, I was ready to throw in the towel. Why? Not because of the phone -- oh no -- I LOVE my phone. Nope -- look at what happened. 

Scam  calls 

More scam calls

I received close to TWENTY scam calls on my cell phone in the last two days. They seem to be leaving my home phone alone now. What the heck is going on? And look at the times --- they came in batches -- sometimes as close as 6 minutes. 

And then I received this lovely text message. Notice the number is close to the last digits of the phone numbers above. That got deleted ASAP. 

A scamming text

This is becoming a total nuisance. And interestingly, when I talk to people about these calls, they say - oh yes -- the call about the X scam. WHY ARE YOU EVEN ANSWERING THOSE CALLS????   I have a new rule -- if there is NO identification on the number, I refuse to answer it. It's a crank call. DO yourself a favor and do not answer. If they want you bad enough, they will leave a message or text you. Remember, if you want to shut off your phone's ringing (at least on the Android), simply turn the phone over, and the call will continue to ring, but you won't hear it. 

I used to decline the call, but a declined call will tell the robot dialer on the other end that there is a body close to that phone. Just flip the phone face down, and it will ring and ring and ring. The robot dialer does not know there is someone close to the phone! That didn't help me yesterday, but we need to start complaining to our phone providers. That was totally insane!!!! I wonder what today will bring. Thankfully, they don't ring in the night. OH -- I think I have the Do Not Disturb turned on. 

I've gotten scam calls in the past, but not the quantity I received in the last two days. Please tell me that I am not alone in that. 

Then I was doing a presentation on Zoom yesterday, and while we were doing the preamble stuff, I felt my FitBit buzz like it had reached the goal of 11.5 KM for the day. Nothing unusual, except I knew I was a couple of KM short. I didn't pay attention to it, but next thing, my computer received a couple of e-mails, and OH MY! I had reached some badges. I didn't check it out until after the call. This is what happened. 

WHOA -- that's a lot of KM

Look at the mileage --- I have NEVER walked that much in a day. Look at the number of steps I supposedly walked. No wonder I got the Fitbit Olympian Sandal badge for walking 100,000 steps in a day. 

AH -- I don't think so

Now to figure out how to back out 20 KM from the Fitbit stuff. Good grief -- what the heck is happening? I guess I just delete that entry and reenter the difference of the 20 KM. 

And as I was presenting, I was almost finished, and without any warning, POOF -- I lost the connection. No sign of instability - no nothing, and that has never happened. 

It was a bizarre technology day, to say the least. 

I'm currently reading a book called One Second After. In this case, ALL technology in the US was targeted by a weapon called EMP -- Electro Magnetic Pulse, and in a second, they have ZERO communication, money has no value. Imagine if, all of a sudden, everything that runs on a computer dies. You have NOTHING. It's terrifying, the technology exists TODAY to make this happen, and it is a possibility in the crazy world of politics. According to the fiction book, it takes years for everything to be rebuilt! There are three books in total. Pretty scary reading! 

My evening reading involved a quilt magazine from 1990. I know --- they need to be cleaned up. I wasn't even quilting at that point. While I may not make anything from these older magazines, it's fun to check out the advertisements and the techniques, and there is inspiration there!!!

Quilt magazine from 1990

This was BEFORE embroidery machines, and there is some gadget you attach to your PFAFF sewing machine to create little motifs. I didn't quite understand it -- it sounded very slow and laborious!

Making designs -- pre-embroidery machine!

And talk about sexism -- read this first paragraph. TOTALLY FEMALE ART???? Are you kidding me? If, as late as 1990, this was the attitude, it's no wonder that the general population doesn't value our work! I wouldn't have expected this in the 1990s --- the 1950's maybe, but not the 1990's. 


And look at the instructions! Cut according to templates. 

Templates! ACK!!

The templates are squares!! Thank goodness the rotary cutter has been invented. Otherwise, we would NOT be making as many quilts as we do. 

Yep -- make templates to cut squares

This picture popped up in my Facebook feed yesterday and brought back so many memories. This is Karen and Alex - two friends that I met on the trip back in 2010. We rode our bicycles from Vancouver to Inuvik in the Northwest Territories. This sign is on the Dempster Highway (800 KM), an unpaved road leading from Dawson City to Inuvik. There's only one refueling spot along that highway -- Eagle Plains Lodge. And YES -- we rode NORTH of the Arctic Circle!

Alex and Karen at a road sign on the Dempster Highway

The weather was glorious that day - NO mud. Gosh -- I need to go on another bike trip! At least, the weather is warming up and was quite lovely yesterday. So nice that I decided to go out late in the afternoon for another walk, even though I had walked earlier in the day. And despite the craziness of my Fitbit, I did need to legitimately walk another KM or two. 

This time, I did something I hadn't done in a while, but the two of them were looking so forlorn. I took both girls for a walk at the same time. 

Lexi and Murphy - -my sled dogs! 

They were pretty well behaved, although this was a rare scene to see them together like this. Usually, one or the other was off to the side checking something out. 

And for some reason, Murphy has an excellent memory. Several years ago, we used to walk in this park, and I trained her to jump up on that bench and walk along the bench. That was part of her agility training. She NEVER forgets to jump up on that bench. I don't encourage her, I don't ask her -- she just does it!! Too funny. 

Murphy walking the bench

Her paw seems to be healing OK. She is licking it less and less, so that's a good thing. But man -- she loves to empty her toy box. 

Murphy and her toys

Despite having some problems saving files - what was it with technology yesterday? I managed to get two lots of homework out the door. That also involved setting up a Facebook group, and I was determined to create a photo collage for the banner. I have done it in the past, but I couldn't get it to work the last time I tried. 

So I opened up Photoshop Elements, and I remembered LAYERS, and before I could "Bob's your uncle," I had my collage. 

Collage for Facebook banner

And hey -- if I can do one, I can create the second one that I've wanted to do. So now all my Facebook groups have banners! 

My second collage for a Facebook banner

I have some older Facebook groups that I want to delete. You would think it would be easy. Just DELETE. NO --- I've Googled it, and you have to remove all the members first. I'm OK with that, except there is NO REMOVE member command in the menu. You can BLOCK the members but not remove them. So then I use Facebook help, and it says the same thing. Then you get to rate the support --- NO, this was NOT helpful because it asked me to do something that didn't have an actual command in the program. I HATE that. 

I may take one of the groups, try the block command, and then delete the group. I now have 15 groups, and there are about four or five that I no longer use. They need to go! And oops, I noticed one group doesn't have a banner yet, and I must change that. 

Today will be a day of car errands (I have two) and sitting at the computer trying to finish the homework and set up some dates for upcoming classes. It just doesn't end!!! But after today, I should have a breather in computer work, and I MUST get that long arm up and running. 

On that note, I'm off to spin class. No more proof of vaccine required -- it will be a breeze to walk in and show my membership card!

Have a super day!!!!



  1. You are not alone. About 6 months ago I was driving (a 3-hour trip) and I got exactly the same thing - call after call after call. Very weird and I did not answer. I never do, if I don't know who is calling. This is one instance in which mama does what son tells her LOL.

  2. My Fitbit has been acting up for the last 2 weeks. This morning on my way to the bathroom it started vibrating like crazy and when I checked it out I had already done 34000 steps. I have been trying to figure out how to reset it but I think I will have to do a factory reset..ugghh

  3. A dear friend is in cybersecurity for a State agency. The Russians are beyond busy interfering everywhere they can and taking down/deleting entire systems. He says to expect this to continue for a long time.

    Yes, as you've done, no one should acknowledge those calls. Robocalls are programmed in batches and there is no reason for them to stop trying as humans are not wasting time.

    We can block these numbers. They will still hear ringing and they can leave messages, we simply won't receive.

    Anyone who doesn't have strong nonsensical passwords needs to get on it. Our best security is a fantastic set of passwords.