The "C" Branch

Jaded commentary on random shit, with an extra helping of cynicism, satire and general contempt for society & Western culture, religion, politics, celebrities, technology, business & more.

Feb 17

What is Divine Providence?


A nice young lady looking for help with a Social Studies project asked for help with this today, so here’s a little explanation of divine providence.

Divine Providence essentially refers to God’s activity and intervention in the world and in people’s lives. It can be and has been used – and abused – as an explanation or justification for just about anything – good or bad.

For example, many ancient rulers (and the civilizations which they governed) took the very fact that they were in power to mean that God willed for that to be. Therefore, this allowed them to get away with doing lots of stuff that may or may not have necessarily been good – but people accepted it as “fate” because God allowed that person to be in power, so therefore everything that was happening must be the will of God.

In fact, everything from the rise and fall of nations and the outcomes of battles and wars to explanations for droughts and famine has been and continues even to this day to be associated with the will and action of God.

This philosophy applies on a much smaller scale as well – and can be attributed to “fate” or “karma” too. In fact, you probably experience it on a daily basis without even realizing it.

For example, if something bad happens to someone and you overhear someone say “he/she had it coming,” they are expressing this very concept – that some higher power (karma, or the universe, or God) had some sort of intervention on that event taking place. And, every single day, millions of believers in God (including myself) attribute good things happening to God’s mercy and power.

Hope that helps!

Feb 17

FCC to Mandate Minimum Broadband Speeds


Unfortunately, most of the times the FCC or other areas of the US Government are mentioned on this blog with regards to the internet, it’s because they’re stirring up some sort of net neutrality outrage or some other problem.

Today, however, I have some interesting and more positive news. While it may be a bit unrealistic of a goal, the FCC has announced a plan to require a minimum speed for residential broadband providers.

Read the rest of this entry »

Feb 04

Blogger to No Longer Support FTP


Blogger is discontinuing its FTP publishing feature in March 2010.

The other day, Blogger sent out an official email to all its users announcing that they will be discontinuing support for FTP publishing quite soon:

…we are announcing today that we will no longer support FTP publishing in Blogger after March 26, 2010. We realize that this will not necessarily be welcome news for some users, and we are committed to making the transition as seamless as possible. To that end:

  • We are building a migration tool that will walk users through a migration from their current URL to a Blogger-managed URL (either a Custom Domain or a Blogspot URL) that will be available to all users the week of February 22. This tool will handle redirecting traffic from the old URL to the new URL, and will handle the vast majority of situations.
  • We will be providing a dedicated blog[5] and help documentation
  • Blogger team members will also be available to answer questions on the forum, comments on the blog, and in a few scheduled conference calls once the tool is released.

Blogger claims that it is a big drain on resources to provide the functionality, and further, that it would require rewriting all of the feature’s code to accommodate a new system they are moving to.

Feb 01

Google IE6 Phase-Out Confirmed


To confirm all the rumors about Google phasing out Internet Explorer 6, I got this email only a few hours ago:

Dear Google Apps admin,

In order to continue to improve our products and deliver more sophisticated features and performance, we are harnessing some of the latest improvements in web browser technology. This includes faster JavaScript processing and new standards like HTML5. As a result, over the course of 2010, we will be phasing out support for Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 as well as other older browsers that are not supported by their own manufacturers.

We plan to begin phasing out support of these older browsers on the Google Docs suite and the Google Sites editor on March 1, 2010. After that point, certain functionality within these applications may have higher latency and may not work correctly in these older browsers. Later in 2010, we will start to phase out support for these browsers for Google Mail and Google Calendar.

Google Apps will continue to support Internet Explorer 7.0 and above, Firefox 3.0 and above, Google Chrome 4.0 and above, and Safari 3.0 and above.

Starting this week, users on these older browsers will see a message in Google Docs and the Google Sites editor explaining this change and asking them to upgrade their browser. We will also alert you again closer to March 1 to remind you of this change.

In 2009, the Google Apps team delivered more than 100 improvements to enhance your product experience. We are aiming to beat that in 2010 and continue to deliver the best and most innovative collaboration products for businesses.

Thank you for your continued support!

Sincerely,

The Google Apps team

I guess that settles it! By the end of the year, all of Google Apps will no longer support IE6. I like it!