Nov 202012

I’m sure there are people who like having Evernote track where they recorded some note, but there are also some of us who don’t. Yes, I tend to be slightly privacy-oriented, or even more than slightly at times. If you’re in that category, here’s one way to delete the locations.

First off, they often come in when you have the Evernote app on your phone. On Android, to turn off the auto-location, you need to go to the Evernote app on your phone, go into settings, and click on “Other Options”. You should see something that says “Location for new notes” with two possible options underneath, one for GPS, and one for wireless networks. Make sure they’re both turned off. You might like to turn off Auto-title while you’re there, especially if you don’t like Evernote reading your calendar to find an appointment or date to write in that title. Yes, I know, I’m sure there are people who find this useful. I don’t.

Having done your best to ensure locations aren’t added to future posts, let’s get rid of the already-existing ones. These instructions are for Evernote 5.0 on the Mac. Find the note, and double-click on it to open it in the editing window. Click on the italic ‘i’ in the top right corner. Then click on the arrow head next to the location field. That gets rid of the location. You may be asked to update the location to your current location; I only needed to say ‘no’ once. Close the editing window and you’re done! Yes, this does reset the updated date, so if that matters, copy it before making your changes so you can change it back again.

There may be a programmatic way to do this, but I only had 5 notes with location information on them, so I didn’t need it.

Aug 312011

A small note in the “in case I need this again” category.

I’m writing a Sinatra app and want to add Twitter OAuth for signing in. A good way to do this appears to be with the omniauth gem but I ran into an issue. require 'oa-oauth' is the documented way to require the right gem, but the error I was getting was `require’: no such file to load — oa-oauth (LoadError), despite having installed the gem. I use RVM to control the Ruby environment, so also checked I’d installed the gem with the RVM version set to the version of Ruby I was using (1.9.2). Hunting around I found a partial answer on the issues list. Partial, because the answers there didn’t help, but the suggestion to try bundle show omniauth did. Bundle came back with Could not find gem ‘omniauth’ in the current bundle.

The answer turned out to be to edit the Gemfile to add gem omniauth to it, then running bundle install. After that, bundle show omniauth found the gem, and require 'oa-oauth' in my Ruby app worked as well.

Dec 072007

I’ve written in this blog before about Facebook’s privacy issues, and the importance of making sure the privacy settings in your Facebook profile match what you want to have happen to your personal data. Brian posted on this same topic and has some good points and detailed instructions; the comments are also worth reading.

I went and checked my settings and found they looked a little different to what I remembered, so it’s probably a good idea to check your settings on a regular basis; as Facebook changes what they do they may change which options exist. And think about what you want, about that balance between letting out enough information so old friends can find you again (as lots of people want) and making sure that not too much information gets out. I changed most of mine to “friends only” from the default “my networks and friends”; maybe at some stage I’ll change some of them back again but for the time being I feel more comfortable this way.

Nov 132007

There are some issues with Web 2.0, mostly in the areas of privacy, security, copyright — all those things you’d rather you didn’t need to worry about. Take privacy for example. On many social networking sites people sign up and then put in all their personal information simply because there’s a field there for it. Often those profiles are public by default, rather than private, and often they’re open to search engines as well. So people think their information is private and then discover it isn’t, and have to go searching through menus to find out how to turn on those privacy filters that are turned off by default. In many cases what’s good for the site owners isn’t necessarily good for the users. One big factor in Flickr’s early success was the fact that uploaded photos could be seen by the world unless specifically made private, and lots of users did (and still do) get confused by copyright issues (creative commons licenses don’t solve the issue of what “public domain” etc actually mean).

Then there’s the persona issue. I might have a legal but slightly embarrassing hobby that I don’t want work knowing about. So I need to set up a separate online identity for that — people need to think about the implications of this in advance if they don’t want correlations of that hobby persona with their “real” one on the basis of an address or phone number or email.

Other problems with the plethora of new Web 2.0 social networking sites: they often don’t understand what privacy and user consent mean. You sign up for something, they ask you to upload your address book to see whether other friends are already there, the next thing you know they’ve done spam-a-friend and emailed everyone in your address book without your knowledge, let alone your consent. Or they ask you to give them your username and password to some other social networking site under the “trust us, we will do no evil” motto (whatever happened to “trust but verify”?).

There are some solutions to this: users have to be careful about the information they hand out (fake birthdates, anyone?) and start demanding that sites take care of their information. If I want to hand out information to the world, that’s my decision, but it shouldn’t be up to some web site to make that decision for me.

The last of a series on Web 2.0, taken from my talk at the CSW Summer School in July 2007. Here‘s the series introduction.

Nov 042007

For those, like me, who are somewhat privacy-oriented, and use Firefox as their browser, I recommend using the Customize Google extension. I set it up to use https for accessing Google docs, reader, and calendar, and to anonymize the Google ID for searching. You can also anonymize the Google analytics cookie, which I’m not doing for the time being. It has a bunch of other features that might be of interest as well, such as setting various preferences or taking selected sites out of search results (e.g., adult sites for your kids). I’ve been using it for a month and have had no problems with it.

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