Posts Tagged “internet”

Happy Nü Year One and All!

After a couple months visiting family and friends with far too much time on busy highways and in big cities, we finally arrived at one of our favorite southwest RV destinations on New Year’s eve. The peace and quiet of Anza Borrego would have to wait, at least a day or so…

Happy Nü Year 2014 Anza Borrego CA

It’s been three years since NüRVers first gathered in Quartzsite to ring in the new year, but it was like we’d seen some of these faces just yesterday. Other new folks became immediate friends.

Happy Nü Year 2014 Anza Borrego CA

One good thing about gathering with a bunch of like-minded technology enabled nomads is that someone is bound to have some insight or a spare piece of hardware should you find yourself having technical difficulties—which tends to happen fairly often on the road less traveled. And this group is filled with programmers, network engineers, developers and artists, oh my!

Happy Nü Year Camp Anza Borrego 2014

Rene and I our kicking the business up a notch, and have determined that 2014 is going to be a very productive year. So my first task after the revelry settled down a bit was to get us online. This can tend to bring surprises after remaining stationary for some time, and this New Year’s day was no different. I wirelessly accessed our MotoSat controller that morning to calibrate the dish since we last used it weeks prior, hundreds of miles to the North. No problem.

Minutes later, I went to raise the dish again and search for our satellite but no wireless network was to be found. Well with this group, there were nearly a dozen new networks, but not ours! I figured it may just be a channel ID conflict,  but I couldn’t access the Linksys WRT300N admin panel if I couldn’t get on the network so I wired in to the router. In doing so, I noticed the Wireless indicator was not lit. Great.

To make a long story short, resetting factor defaults and fudging about resulted in no wireless connectivity. I got us online with the dish, set Rene up with a cable, and went to ask the Man.

2014 Nü Year' Eve Party was A Formal Affair

Sam is one of our top go-to guys when it comes to tech questions. After explaining my troubleshooting steps, he had an official diagnosis:

The desert ate your router.

It doesn’t help questioning why it worked one minute and not the next. It doesn’t help that Verizon cellular service is serious lacking in this part of the Southern CA desert. And it doesn’t help worrying about waiting for General Delivery while trying to be productive.

What did help was that Sam also had a spare CradlePoint MBR95 wireless router he wasn’t using. In fact, he had been thinking of selling it! So I took it for a test drive.

To make a longer story even shorter! It works like a charm. The CradlePoint is a wireless 4G/3G router that let’s you connect a USB broadband modem, which we do not use since we have our Verizon MiFi for redundancy. But you can also connect any cable/DSL modem, or in our case the HughesNet terminal. Same gave us a deal, we paid him via PayPal on the spot, and we’re already working away on big plans.

Lessons Learned This Time:

Be prepared for the unexpected. If you rely on the interwebs to support your nomadic lifestyle, have redundant methods of connectivity and carry along any cables you might need in the event of a wireless emergency.

Ours is not to question why. Living this lifestyle, if something can go wrong, it eventually will. If something goes wonky that once worked just fine, don’t waste too many brain cycles trying to figure out why.

Know who to ask. By all means, know what to do in terms of general troubleshooting for any equipment you operate. But if ever in doubt, know where to turn for free advice. The NüRVers Facebook page and RV geek discussion forums are a good place to start!

Don’t panic. Whatever happens, take a moment to breathe and evaluate the situation. There is always a solution and the best is often the simplest.

Connect with good friends. Develop a core group of fellow traveling friends online and don’t spend too much time in between hooking up with them next time!

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Today we’re dusting off a few of our best and most well-received blog posts from the last four years in honor of our recent nomination to Tripbase’s “My 7 Links” blog project.

The aim is to unite bloggers of all different topics to share lessons learned and create a bank of long but not forgotten blog posts that deserve to see the light of day again.

Here we go!

Our 7 Links

Most Popular Post: On A Budget, Build Your Own RV

Surprisingly, more than 150,000 readers have seen this brief, 25-word description of resources for building your own van conversion, camper, trailer, or boat, from the long defunct Simple Living Network. The cool homemade fifth wheel video we added must have helped!

Most Helpful Post: Troubleshooting the Norcold N821 RV Refrigerator

The ongoing discussion in the comments we continue to get on Jim’s post about troubleshooting our Norcold RV Refrigerator has proven more helpful than the post itself.

A Post Whose Success Surprised Me: Ringing Up the Dead in Forest Park Cemetery, Brunswick NY

Who would’ve thought our rather uneventful trip to Forest Park Cemetery would stir up so many eerie reports from one of the most haunted cemeteries in America.

Most Beautiful Post: RIP Spoonie Gee

Helpless is the only way to describe the feeling of learning about the death of a loved one when you’re on the road. Oh Spoonie. We wish we could have saved you from yourself.

Most Controversial Post: Stealth Greywater Dumping: Do You or Don’t You?

Only an RVer can talk about sewer dumps and stinky holding tanks over breakfast. Learn who does and who won’t let go of skanky water out in the hinterlands, one of the dirty little secrets of RVers.

 A Post that didn’t get the Attention it Deserved: How to Color Your Hair as a Fulltime RVer

Keeping my hair color in shape while living in a tiny space has been one of my biggest challenges since fulltime RVing. Am I the only one who struggles with this?

The Post that I am Most Proud of: Mad Max Meets Good Sam at the Slabs

Few places evoke such visceral reactions from RVers as Slab City USA. This objective article addresses the surprising, the beautiful and the entertaining aspects of the Last Free Place for weary travelers.

7 Links: Who’s Next?

And now, in the spirit of the My 7 links project, we are nominating the following bloggers to share their wisdom by publishing their 7 links on their blogs:

Watch for the best posts being shared everyday on the Tripbase Facebook  page and Twitter feed at #My7Links.

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Here’s that informative post I promised before i got distracted by those great steaks and cocktails at the AA. I hope at least, that anyone who publishes an RV blog – or any website for that matter – will find this information, well… informative!

Badlands Warning SignA while back, fellow Nü RVers those tech nomads informed us that a certain website was repurposing blog posts, not only from this site, but theirs and those of a number of other RVers.

Sure enough, a simple search revealed that entire posts of ours, including photos, were being republished in their entirely without our permission. Furthermore, we discovered that the site in question was a paid membership site, so it was using our content for profit!

The infringing website’s owner argued that because we make our posts available via rss feed, that the content was free to use as he wished. A bogus claim from someone who hadn’t done his homework, but a slightly grey area nonetheless.

TIP: To search a specific website for something you wrote, use Google and enter a distinct phrase followed by “site:” and the domain, like this…

“freaky vegan cooking”

Replace and the phrase or keywords to meet your needs.

While we were able to remove all existing and future content of ours from the website in question with one request, it got me thinking. I decided to do my own homework regarding the rights of web publishers, and gladly share what I found out here.

Ownership Rights of Web Content Publishers

According to the The Berne Copyright Convention, everything on the internet is considered copyrighted the moment it is written. Under the Berne Convention, copyright is automatic upon publication and does not require formal registration. When the United States joined the Convention in 1988, however, statutory damages and attorney’s fees continued to be available available only for registered works.

According to the World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty of 1996, “compilations of data or other material (databases), in any form, which by reason of the selection or arrangement of their contents constitute intellectual creations.” All blog content is stored in a database and is therefore an intellectual creation.

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (title 17, U. S. Code) states that “Copyright protection subsists, in accordance with this title, in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression, now known or later developed, from which they can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device.”

Finally, by republishing our copyrighted content on a for-profit website I confirmed that the infringing site was  in violation of the federal copyright fair use doctrine, as described in sections 107 through 118 of the copyright law (title 17, U. S. Code)

Please note that I am by no means a lawyer, not even close, in any way. So I consulted one. I visited the free legal advice website and asked:

What law can be cited when notifying someone who has republished original website content without permission, when they insist syndicated content (rss) is in the public domain?

My research proved me correct. Here is the answer I received:

You can cite 17 USC 106 which defines your exclusive rights, including a right of attribution, and 17 USC 501-506 which define your remedies. 505 authorizes recovery of attorneys fees and expenses and 506 may make it a criminal offense, particularly when done via the web.

However, you need to know that for the Court to have jurisdiction to enforce a copyright in the US, you must first apply to register it. It is a simple process for a copyright attorney to do that online. You should use an attorney, so that the attorney can simultaneously write a CDL (cease and desist letter) to this apparent infringer. A letter from you is not likely to have the same effect and not likely to be worded for optimum impact. In fact, most do-it-yourself non-lawyer CDLs are a disaster and some even create grounds for countersuit.

So, if you want to ensure your legal rights to anything you publish, see a copyright attorney, consider assigning a creative commons license, or register your own copyright.

How to Re-Publish Blog Posts From RSS Feed

There are numerous blog aggregators on the interwebs that legally republish copyrighted content. They do this by only publishing an excerpt, assigning attribution, and including a link to the original source. But there may be times when one might wish to republish content from another source in its entirety, when it is appropriate to do so. Like when said person owns the copyright to the original content, or has explicit written permission to do so.

WPMU DEV - The WordPress ExpertsI’ve been considering doing just that with a new Tripawds Blog that will republish posts from our five featured blogs, giving readers one location to find all the best news, gear, gifts and nutrition advice for three legged dogs in one convenient site. Just how would I go about doing this?

To republish our own content and consolidate posts from multiple different blogs in one site, I plan to use the Autoblog plugin from WPMU Dev. Should you choose to do the same, of course, we know you’ll be certain you have the rights to do so.

Recommended Reading

Infringement Nation: Copyright 2.0 and You

Patents Copyrights and Trademarks for Dummies

The Pocket Idiot’s Guide to Copyrights

Every Writer’s Guide to Copyright and Publishing Law: Third Edition

Law of the Web: A Field Guide to Internet Publishing

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My dad once told me a similar joke where an immigrant gave up on learning the English language after reading that headline. But yet again, I digress.

Though I have said it before, whenever I go AWOL around here you can rest assured it has something to do with three legged dogs. This time was a big deal.

I recently completed the long overdue Tripawds site makeover with a complete overhaul of the site’s theme and active plugin structure. Anyone interested in the easiest way to make random header images or how to integrate multi-site stats into a site-wide header might be interested in the bit I wrote about how to customize the WPMU-Nelo custom homepage CMS WordPress theme.

Suffice it to say, however, that this undertaking was a crash course in php and css. And so far, it has paid off. Speaking figuratively, not literally. My prime directive for overhauling the Tripawds site was to improve performance in the discussion forums.

We started Tripawds using Mandigo, the same theme behind this blog and the RVblogz community. It has served us well. Mandigo is massively configurable, with lots of java and many files. Over the past few years, Jerry’s blog infrastructure had become bloated.

Too many hacks, scripts and widgets were bogging down the site.
WordPress, Multisite and BuddyPress Plugins, Themes and Support - WPMU DEV

So how did I do it?

One word: WPMUdev.

Seriously, there’s no way I alone could make the Tripawds Blogs community what it has become without my WPMUdev premium subscription for the best WordPress themes plugins and support. That’s how during the recent makeover I easily implemented robust new features like a global site search and searchable directories for blogs and members.

It’s also where I got the lean and mean WPMU-Nelo. Hacking this slick WordPress theme to bits was relatively easy, even for me due to it’s code simplicity and parent/child theme structure.

Did someone say digress? We’re in Quartzite now with the Nü Crew, and I haven’t even written about Walla Walla. As much as I hate reading blogs that bemoan infrequent updates, we gots some catchin’ up to do!

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Huh? Bear with me.

Unexploded Ordnance at Slab City LibraryWe feel right at home back in our same spot here on the Slabs after our windy Borrego holiday. The sun… the Range… the bombs.

Bright blasts on the horizon were big last night, and close enough to thump the ground. But the blast took about nine and a half seconds to be heard. Quick, do the math.

Sound travels at the approximate speed of 1,100 feet per second. With blasts seen about 9.5 seconds before being heard that puts bombs just 10,450 feet away. Divide that by by 5,280 feet in a mile and you have very big bombs exploding 1.9791667 miles away. And what on earth does this have to do with Google, you ask?

In doing a simple search for the speed of sound and how many feet in a mile, I discovered that Google is indeed going to take over the world!

Before long, every web page visited will be tracked, logged, analyzed, stored, and marketed to accordingly in Googledom. With the search engine’s recent makeover, users have new powerful search and sorting options. They also have a responsibility to their own users for not passing encoded googlinks capable of tracking who knows what viewer history information. Which is exactly what you will do when simply right-clicking to copy an URL now from Google search result links. Check it out for yourself.

What do you think all this means?

So, that big bomb Google has dropped? No more absolute url copying for direct links to search results. Right click to copy a link and you now get a Googlurl encoded with plenty of tracking voodoo. What’s more disturbing yet? It was dropped by a stealth bomber…

It means this:

Roll over any Google search result link and the browser status bar shows the actual url. At least Firefox does, on my Mac. And that’s pretty sneaky if you ask me. Not until a link is copied will the truth be told.

If you prefer to defy assimilation, here’s what to do: beneath Google search links a partial URL for the result is included in small green type, with no hyper link. Select that and copy if you don’t care to be part of the machine.

Military Maneuvers on the Slabs near Niland, CA

Apparently this has something to do with outbound SERPs. More like outright usurpers if you ask me. Check this Razzed blog for further Google outbound link tracking analysis. And try to pay attention where you’re sending people with your copied links. I sure will now.

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