Cyber Cecurity and Digital Disasters

Worried about WordPress Block? Perplexed by Pressword? Digital life at Tidalscibe Towers is far more complicated, it’s a wonder you are reading this at all.

Warning, technical geniuses may be offended by the use of inappropriate technical language in the following item.

Thanks to the easing of the Covid roadmap and visits from Cyberson 1 and Digidaughter, a few problems have been ironed out. I can now post and edit my blog from the BIG computer with the BIG screen – old television. I can write in the relative calm of Microsoft Word and cut and paste, I can add links. Actually, it turned out I got just as many Likes for blogs cobbled together on the iPad with bits and blocks, prose and pix dancing up and down the screen or disappearing.  I am aware that the late Cyberspoue’s love of computers and digital technology, preferably second hand, meant our house had a higher than average digital delight rating, which was fine when he was my happiness engineer; more hands on than the WordPress Happiness  Engineer… But now I do at least have more than one device to access the internet portal. I imagine bloggers all over the world; some in control rooms NASA would envy, others sitting in bed with their smart phone, which are you dear reader?

I thought my old android phone, bought by Cyberspouse from Dave at work and passed on down to me, was finally giving up. Then through a process of brilliant deduction, seeing a detached wire at the end of the charger cable, I looked in the dreaded drawer of wires and found a spare charger. But by then the seed had been planted that I should have an iPhone which could form some sort of incestual relationship with the iPad. We only bought the iPad so we could Facetime Team G when Cyberson 1 was posted to the USA for three years. They’ve been back for one year so the iPad is probably due to go to a museum soon…

Cyberson 1 decided to buy me one with his pocket money when they were here at half term, but the model we agreed I would like was not available locally, so he then had to check with his sister if she would be able to set it up if he ordered from Amazon. Yes.

The phone arrived and I was ready with the secret code to give the delivery man. Next day Digidaughter arrived and we were she was ready. Of course my old sim card was too big so she phoned up Tesco to send a new sim card so I could keep my very basic Tesco account and my phone number… not that I ever phone anybody with my mobile or tell them my number…

A few days later, on my own again,  I came home and saw a Tesco leaflet amongst the mail and nearly threw it in the recycling bin, then realised this big piece of paper contained a minute piece of magic. I have never actually put in a sim card, I wouldn’t be much good as a spy or criminal constantly changing phones. But we had done a mock run through and I had a link to the ‘how to’ youtube video. All I had to do was not lose the wire tool or drop the minute sim card…

What are your favoured devices for writing your blogs and posting on WordPress? If you have a mobile phone do you use it to phone people or to look at Facebook and take photos to post on Instagram?

Silly Saturday – Instant Instagram

Should you be on Instagram? Of course, you should be on everything, just in case you miss something.

What is Instagram for? I have absolutely no idea, but it is quite fun.

‘Instagram is a photo and video-sharing social networking service owned by Facebook, Inc. It was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, and launched in October 2010.’

Any the wiser?

Don’t worry, as long as you have a mobile phone that takes pictures you can join. Post your picture and put some hashtags.  Why, I’m not sure, but if you put #brightonpier  you are linked with all the other people who have taken better pictures of Brighton Pier. Some people put a few hashtags, others a whole list of them, which is a teeny bit showing off.

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But the most important thing, Rule One, is to take pictures instantly and send them off instantly. As soon as you arrive on holiday or you are in the middle of a big street demonstration, take a photo with your phone so that your followers will be envious, or impressed that you are protesting instead of sitting at home on the sofa looking at your phone. Don’t try to cheat by sending a picture of last year’s holiday; especially if it is a picture of you standing in front of Notre Dame. Someone is sure to find out…

Hey I’m in Venice at the moment and it’s raining not sunny.

Or That’s the Brexit march, not Extinction Rebellion.

Rule two, post pictures every day, or better still, every hour in case your followers wonder what has happened to you. If you are not going anywhere, or your life is unbelievably dull you can always pop in the garden, or someone else’s garden and take pictures of flowers. People like bright happy flowers to cheer their day. If you have a cat or puppy, even better, followers will never tire of endless pictures of your pet’s cuteness.

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How do you get followers? Wait or follow other people and hope they follow you. Occasionally you may get a message

ilovemyself is now following you, why not follow them back.

Look at their gallery, if they only take pictures of themselves you may not want to follow them…

Hopefully you will soon see a little red heart flashing to tell you someone liked your picture. You can also share your pictures on Facebook and Twitter, though when you go on Facebook and see your picture on the big computer screen it may not look as good as it did on your little phone screen…

Happy Snapping

If you like looking at photos there are always plenty on my website.

https://www.ccsidewriter.co.uk/chapter-three-picture-gallery/

Do you like taking photographs?

Do you prefer phones or cameras?

Do you enjoy posting pictures on social media?

 

Covert Coves and Continuity

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We once stayed for a week at a secluded Scottish cove where I was glad to discover there was no reception for mobile phones, nor was there a landline in the cottage. At the very top of the cliff, if you held your phone high in the air you could be lucky and get reception. A peaceful place for a holiday and proof for authors that there are still settings where mobile phones cannot be used; where characters can escape without being traced or where persons in peril cannot call for help.

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The plots of crime fiction, spy thrillers and romances changed for ever when mobile phones became ubiquitous. No running along dark lonely roads or knocking on strange doors to fetch help, a quick call on your mobile and an air ambulance or armed response unit could be with you in minutes. No wonder authors enjoy putting their heroes and villains in spots where there is no mobile reception.

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But you can’t always trust your characters. Reading through the third draft of one of the novels in the Brief Encounters Trilogy  I realised several of my leading characters, in several scenes, had casually used their mobile phones when they knew perfectly well there was no mobile phone reception at Holly Tree Farm. Some minor plot changes were needed for the fourth draft.

Proof reading and editing the manuscript of a novel is not just about lost commas, the wrong ‘their, there and they’re’ and ‘from’ turning to ‘form’ when you’re not looking. Continuity is just as important as on a film set.

Holly Tree Farm nestles in the quiet Wiltshire countryside; when Nathanial inherits the house it offers a refuge for his new friends and their secrets, but they never could have guessed the rambling old farm house had secrets of its own.

Read the first book in the trilogy for 99 pence.