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Lighten up while you still can

A few days ago Facebook rolled out their new home page, as well as some complimentary features to the Friends page and some unpublished bug fixes. I do use this blog to complain about Facebook occasionally, mostly because I’m jealous of Mark Zuckerberg, but today I’ll be defending it.

Let’s get one thing straight, first: the new homepage is a vast improvement over the old one. The old one was more cluttered and let’s be honest: who used anything other than the “Top Stories” and “Live Feed” tab anyway? The new homepage incorporates both of those features (with some improvements) and adds filters that are customizable, meaning people will actually use them.

You can imagine my shock (read: actually, I completely expected this) when the home page changes began to roll out and like a viral outbreak people started complaining as the changes hit them. “John Smith hates the new Facebook.” “Jane Sanders is back from vacation, but found a bad new Facebook. Sad face.” “Bobby Jones is not really sure what the heck Facebook thinks they’re doing, messing with my homepage.” As expected, these people all congregate into a group creatively titled “100,000 against the new Facebook homepage” (notice that capping your group name at 100,000 doesn’t leave you much room to expand. Facebook has you covered here, too: you can now rename your groups so you can scale to 1,000,000, 1e7, 1e8, etc.), and for a few days haughtily expect Facebook to do something, because they can’t figure out how to use this service which they love so much.

Here’s the thing: Facebook is the property of one company: Facebook. The only reason you should get to complain AT ALL is if you were a shareholder. Microsoft is the only company that’s thrown any money into Facebook so far, according to Bill Gates’ Facebook page, he’s “vacationing in Hawaii,” and not at all displeased with Facebook. (Actually I’m kidding: Bill Gates might have a Facebook page, but I don’t think I friended him yet.) Since you’re not (presumably) Bill Gates (and if you are, hi Bill!), the only way of protesting change to Facebook is to not use it. I know that’s a shocking concept for you, but no one is stopping you from firing up your favorite text editor and creating your own scalable, secure social networking platform.

Another point: Facebook even warned you that these changes were coming, via the Facebook Blog (which, if you’re so concerned with what’s new at Facebook, maybe you should read occasionally) and even a little information box that directed you to said blog. You were invited to give your feedback before these changes were rolled out. Would I be wrong in saying that none of you that are complaining so much didn’t write feedback before the changes?

Ultimately, you’ll get used to the new Facebook. In fact, you’ll grow to love it, so much so that when Facebook changes the homepage again, you’ll hate the new page with every fiber of your being. Here’s my question: aren’t you guys dizzy yet, from going in so many circles?

Just another way to survive…

Today I’m blogging from high atop the Nord building on campus, on the fifth floor with a comfy cubic meter of space in one of the hallways. I like sitting here sometimes when I’m bored because it’s quiet, it’s peaceful, and it makes me look like a hobo, which I’m a huge fan of.

  • An executive decision from the offices of Jimmy Sawczuk: no more regular game recaps. They didn’t seem to be that popular, they’re kind of a pain to write because I usually have to adhere to that format, and writing those every day kept me away from blogging about other things. Never fear, if there’s a game I want to talk about, I’ll talk about it.
  • While on the topic of the game recaps, I’d like to thank aimable for his comment on my last post. Part of his comment, the part before he starts spamming, reads:
    Yankees are the best team in the MLB, as far as I m concerned, we have great fans, and really the whole city of New York will say that. In New York if you want to watch the Yankees in style good luck with that, all the Yankees premium seats get sold out and are highly priced.

    Why, aimable, would you ever say that? They’re not even the best in their division, much less the rest of the league. I like the Yankees hitters (when they’re hitting anyway) and I like the back end of the bullpen, but most of that team is just old – and as much as it pains me to say this, Boston should wipe the floor with them this year.

    aimable did manage to prove my point about Yankees fans and Red Sox Nation however: no matter what the numbers say, no matter what the facts are, their teams, to them, are the absolute best in baseball. Right now, the Oakland Athletics are three games better than the Yankees, and you don’t see them walking around saying, “worship the Oakland A’s!”. I don’t doubt the Yankees will make the playoffs this year (although I think I had them missing the Wild Card to the Tigers), but I can’t imagine them getting out of the Division series.

  • I noticed something new on CNN.com today. Next to a few of the headlines, they have a little T-shirt icon:

    Being the inquisitive soul that I am, I clicked it, and was directed to this page:

    I can’t make this stuff up, folks. Seriously! You can have a T-shirt with the words: “Smuggled workers turned into slaves.” At first, I had to look at my calendar, I was sure it was an April Fool’s joke. But no, this is completely legitimate.

    Now, I chose a headline that is controversial to show the bad side of this little ploy. But what’s the good side? Are there some Democrats just sitting on CNN.com 24/7 waiting for the headline: “Bush says he’s an idiot”, or maybe some Ron Paul supporters waiting for the headline: “Everyone cheated, Ron Paul wins by default”, or maybe some Mitt Romney supporters: “Romney washes his hair”? I can’t think of one good headline for a T-shirt. And by the way, CNN.com charges $15 per shirt; if you’re really that desperate, make your own shirt and you can write whatever you want! (And put pretty pictures, too, from what I hear…)

  • Today is the last day of classes here at Case, meaning that in about one week (my last final is a week from tomorrow), I’ll be exactly 3/4 done with college. It’ll be nice to get out of this place and become a productive member of society again, and with any luck I’ll find a company who picks a name and sticks with it, unlike CWRU Case Case Western Reserve University Case Western Reserve.
  • By the way, someone needs to teach the Democratic party how to do math, because between Obama and Clinton, someone is absolutely wrong when they say they’re winning. I’d say Obama has the edge right now, because of, you know, 5000 years of mathematical knowledge, but maybe when Hillary is president she’ll pass legislation banning advanced math so her win is justified.

    In either case, you can’t have two candidates who are both winning. You can have candidate A beating candidate B, meaning candidate A is winning. You can have candidate B beating candidate A, meaning candidate B is winning. You can have a tie, meaning that no one is winning. Or, and I think this is the case lately, you can have candidate A and candidate B slapping each other like two middle schoolers over the stupidest little things, meaning they’re both losing.

    Seriously, if you’re the Democratic party, how do you possibly justify not giving the nomination to Obama? He’s ahead. He’s going to stay ahead. Clinton can debate it all she wants, but in the end, under the system of rules agreed upon before the primaries began, Obama will be the winner.

    I wonder why the Democratic party has superdelegates anyway. Not to pick sides or throw cheap shots, but superdelegates screams “Republican”. The Democratic party is all about equality in every aspect, almost to a point of socialism… except when it comes to picking a presidential nominee. If you were to read the beliefs of the Democratic party, with things as they are, it should say “The Democrats believe all people are created equal… except not all people.”

  • Thank God, the NFL Draft is over. Now ESPN can get back to covering sports.
  • Quote of the Day:
    It’s one of the oldest laws in security: the strength of the security should only rely on the secrecy of the key, not the algorithm. We’ve known this forever, and yet people still do it. Don’t be one of those people.

    David Singer, MATH 408 professor

    Indians play the Yankees tonight, going for the series win against the Bronx Bombers – it’ll be Aaron Laffey against Mike Mussina, who’s not the same pitcher these days. Let’s get the win, guys… put aimable in his place.

    And by the way, I just realized I used the word “slaves” in this entry. Thus, if Google Ads decides to try and sell you slaves a few days from now, I feel it is my duty to inform you that slavery is in fact illegal and you shouldn’t do it. I wonder what the penalty is for Google if those ads were ever run though? …