5 Things - Week Ending 8/24/12

This is the 21st post in a series called 5 Things. Each week I will share a combination of technology articles and apps that I have discovered and liked in the past week. Anything highlighted in blue is a link to an article, an app, or another section of my website.

L.A. restaurant pays customers to put away their phones

Tiffany Hsu:

Eva Restaurant on Beverly Boulevard is offering diners a 5% discount on their bill if they dump their digital devices before being seated, according to radio station KPCC. Owner and chef Mark Gold says it’s a tactic to keep distracted dining to a minimum.

When Britta and I go out to eat we have a rule that we have to put our phones on silence and that we can't use them during our time at the restaurant.

I wish more restaurants would offer a discount if you opted to not use your phone during dinner. Perhaps that would encourage more people to engage in conversation with the people that they are eating with!

Captchas Are Becoming Ridiculous

Andrew Munsell:

While the word “secretary” is perfectly visible, albeit faded, the first word is more of a puzzle. “Onightsl”? “Onighisl”? Are those even words?

Am I the only one that gets frustrated when confronted with a captcha?

I hope that someone comes up with a better system to determine if an actual human is on the other end.

Your “Secret Question” May Not Be So Secret: Easy-to-Guess Password Retrieval Questions You Should Avoid and Why

Lysa Myers:

What is the reset procedure for the site you just made that awesome password for? Can someone Google a couple facts about you to unlock your secret questions? Well, nuts. That’s all your hard work out the window.

If you use the internet you should read this article. If you have a strong password (most of us don't by the way) you may find yourself victim of a hacker if your security questions are easily answered by someone looking you up on Facebook or Google.

I am going to go change the answers to all my security questions after reading this article.

Your Clever Password Tricks Aren’t Protecting You from Today’s Hackers

Melanie Pinola:

No matter what passwords you choose or create, this is the most important security strategy of all: Use a different password for each site. This limits the damage that can be done if/when there's a security breach—if your password is compromised on one site, at least all your other accounts are protected.

I can't stress the importance of having strong and different passwords for the various websites you use. As we do more on the internet we need to make sure to protect ourselves.

You wouldn't leave valuables in an unlocked car in a sketchy neighborhood and you shouldn't use the same weak password on multiple sites.

If you have questions on how to create better passwords feel free to contact me!

5 Design Tricks Facebook Uses To Affect Your Privacy Decisions

Avi Charkham:

In fact, Facebook keeps “improving” their design so that more of us will add apps on Facebook without realizing we’re granting those apps (and their creators) access to our personal information. After all, this access to our information and identity is the currency Facebook is trading in and what is driving its stock up or down.

This article exposes how Facebook is "tricking" people into giving permission for apps to access your personal data.

I think this is really sneaky and I don't like it.

My cousin Bobbie recently deleted his Facebook. I am going to interview him for my blog about his thoughts on the subject in the next couple months. If he doesn't miss Facebook there is a good chance I will delete mine as well.