Finding a private location check-in service

Foursquare decided that it was too hard for them to compete with location services like Yelp and split their app into two separate apps. Whilst that might make sense to the 4Square CEO and his VC masters, it makes no sense from a users perspective. Foursquare can be a bit of a battery hog already, and having 2 apps to open and "annoy" you with notifications is not an improvement by any means. And if I wanted Foursquare to be Yelp - I would have used Yelp in the first place. So no - I do not want to install another separate check-in App (called Swarm). One battery hogging location app was enough.    by  leogaggl  The other argument used by 4Square's CEO is that he didn't want users confused about the "gamification" aspects of 4Square. I personally think that this is highly patronising to the Foursquare user base. I am sure most users would be able to work out what it is useful for. Since I have always used 4Square mainly as a means to get some analytics of my movements and historic record of where I was at what time (I always downloaded my checkins to Thinkup on my own server) I was trying to find something that would fit the same use case. Meet Ushahidi (http://www.ushahidi.com/) - an excellent geo-coded "reporting" service developed in Kenya. I have been following this project for years already. Dynamic Timeline Track your reports on the map and over time, filter your data…

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FreedomBox + RaspberryPi = FreedomPi

I have been watching progress on FreedomBox ever since watching a video of Eben Moglen a few years ago. Turns out that that they recently announced the availability of their 0.1 preview release. As part of this there is one component that is extremely useful for RaspberryPi users (funnily the co-founder of RasperryPi is also called Eblen by first name - go figure) out there concerned about increasing snooping of private information by governments and corporations for a variety of reasons. Meet 'freedombox-privoxy' https://www.gitorious.org/freedombox-privoxy/freedombox-privoxy This software combines the functionality of the Adblock Plus ad blocker, the Easy Privacy filtering list, and the (HTTPS Everywhere](https://www.eff.org/https-everywhere) website redirection plugin into a single piece of software to run on your FreedomBox. Combining these different plugins into software for your FreedomBox means that you can use them with almost any browser or mobile device using a standard web proxy connection. Best of all this has already been made available via the Raspbian repositories (http://mirrordirector.raspbian.org/raspbian/pool/contrib/f/freedombox-privoxy/) so the install is extremely simple. sudo apt-get install freedombox-privoxy Note: make sure that you have the 'contrib' branch in the Raspbian repositories enabled in /etc/apt/sources.list deb http://mirrordirector.raspbian.org/raspbian wheezy main contrib non-free deb-src http://mirrordirector.raspbian.org/raspbian wheezy main contrib non-free Kudos to James Vasile for the technical work ! To get some more idea on the usage of privoxy you can check this article.

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Facebook – good riddance !

Finally I made the effort to completely get rid of my Facebook Account. After initially getting a Facebook Account in the very early days (as an 'occupational hazard' to investigate the potential of Facebook Applications) I have always been suspicious of the companies motives and decided not to use such a closed system as a base for application development. Recent developments have only confirmed this suspision: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_Facebook http://www.forbes.com/sites/chunkamui/2011/08/08/facebooks-privacy-issues-are-even-deeper-than-we-knew/ http://www.reddit.com/r/technology/comments/ln2e0/facebook_patent_to_track_users_even_when_they_are/ Instead I will concentrate all of my content inside this blog (including as a backup for other social services I create). I believe the control over my own content is important enough for me to warrant the extra effort. As the saying goes: 'You are not a Facebook User - you are the Product'   by  cogdogblog 

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