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Apple vs my daughter’s iPad: Part II

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I just got off the phone with Apple, after speaking to a point person on the executive relations team. Isabella G offered to set me up with an escalated support member. I thanked her (and accepted) but said that my concern in this matter went wider than my specific case.

I explained that a no-reason account lockdown was a much broader and much more important issue to me. Our device was not stolen. My daughter did not enter bad passcodes or wrong passwords. There was no reason that the lockdown should have happened and no way for Apple Support to explain why it did  happen. If it could happen to us, it can happen to anyone and potentially at any time.

That my daughter had forgotten her security recovery information, too, led to a much broader issue. She was young, foolish, and feels sorry for her choices. At the very least, she should have changed her email when the provider shut down its services. But having an outdated email and no memory of security questions isn’t limited to her specific situation.

Consider the elderly or those who otherwise struggle with recall. They may be able to, as she was, know their passcode, account, and password but not be able to recall the specifics of the security questions or know where they had placed the documentation for the exact phrasing used when answering those questions the first time. They too may have clung to existing account names even if their email has changed over time.

The core problem isn’t that my child made regrettable decisions. She did. It’s that a lockout happened without explanation and without recourse. Something triggered the lockout. And, it clearly was something that fell outside the scope of where we, as customers, would want or accept that the lockout should occur.

I’d like to find out what that was, how Apple can prevent it from happening in the future and how they can offer remedies given the consequences of both losing information and device utility.

Update: Support call went nowhere but our support person was as usually thoroughly professional and nice. Other theories about what might have happened are “haven’t logged in for a long time, which could have activated the lockdown” (his) and “possibly the privacy act stuff this week bouncing back from a dead email” (mine).

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Soylent and WFP Innovation Accelerator help bring Hydroponic farming to Africa

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This week, #SoylentForGood is proudly renewing our support for World Food Program USA for the third year in a row. Without you, our loyal customers, we wouldn’t be able to fund such programs, so we also wanted to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU.

Recap of Soylent and WFP USA:

Beginning in May 2016, Soylent became an official supporter of World Food Program USA, a non-profit organization that supports the lifesaving work of the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), the global leader in the fight to end hunger.

Recently, we have directed most of our funding to the WFP’s Innovation Accelerator. Launched in 2016, WFP’s Innovation Accelerator identifies, supports and scales up solutions to address global hunger. They address global malnutrition while developing technologies that can prevent food scarcity for the long term. Challenging the status quo is in our DNA at Soylent, so this new initiative at WFP quickly caught our team’s attention. While we believe that Soylent can help in many situations and circumstances, we also recognize that we do not have all the answers. Just as our founder Rob Rhinehart’s entrepreneurial spirit sought to solve some of the issues with our global food ecosystem and consequently created Soylent, we want to help support new, promising ideas that help further our vision.

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Sahwari refugee camp. Photo Credit: Danish Refugee Council

For 42 years, Sahrawi refugees have been living amongst five camps in the Sahara desert near the town of Tindouf in Western Algeria. WFP supports 125,000 of the most vulnerable. The harsh and isolated desert environment has limited opportunities for agriculture and self-reliance. Though helped by humanitarian assistance, food security assessments have shown that 19% of Sahrawi children under 5 suffer from chronic malnutrition and 43% of Sahrawi women between the ages of 15 and 49 suffer from anemia within the camps.

Soylent helps bring sustainable Feed Production with Hydrograss in the Sahara

WFP’s Innovation Accelerator and Soylent are bringing a new technology to camps in the Sahara to help refugees produce their own food: Hydroponics

With low-tech hydroponic systems, and a blend of nutrients targeted at the exposed roots, plants are able to quickly grow and thrive in the desert without soil or a lot of water.

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Photo Credit: WFP/Nina Schroder

During the first phase of this pilot (November 2016 – April 2017), WFP and OXFAM tested the concept of growing barley in the desert with a high-tech container unit and adapted the technology to local needs with the support of Sahrawi engineer Taleb and other refugees. As a result, with the support of Soylent, the refugee community developed the new Hydroponic Fodder unit and adapted it to local conditions. The unit can now be produced at 10% of the cost of the previous version by using only locally available materials, which contributes to the sustainability and ownership of the initiative.

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Photo Credit: WFP/Nina Schroder

The first use case for these units have been to grow barley grass, which is among the fastest-growing, high-nutrition feed sources for livestock, thus providing key sustenance and nutrients for the chain of life in the Sahara. Growth takes 7 days from seed to harvest, with 10% of the water requirements and none of the soil requirements of traditional methods.

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Photo Credit: WFP/Nina Schroder

Prior to the hydrograss units, livestock relied on garbage as a source of nutrition, leading to poor health and consequently little value to the refugees. The results of the project have been very promising, more than doubling milk production and increasing the health, life expectancy and reproduction of the local goats. Now, the families can provide more milk to their kids. This innovative approach shows tremendous promise of improving the nutritional status of the families and improving the camp’s resilience and self-reliance.

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Photo Credit: WFP/Nina Schroder

Soylent believes in the promise of plant-based diets. However, we also want to ensure that all people receive a complete meal, for example in areas like the dessert, where a nutritious plant-based-only meal may not be accessible. While the earliest applications have been for animal feed, we are excited at the prospect that the same concept and technology will also be used to grow fresh produce to be directly consumed by people. Currently first tests for fresh hydroponic vegetable production in the camps are being conducted. This pilot in Algeria was so successful, it is now being replicated in countries like Sudan (again with Soylent’s support) as well as Chad with increasing applications beyond animal feed. In Peru, a localized Hydroponic DIY solution was developed with families living in slums to grow vegetables for their own consumption.

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Photo Credit: WFP/Nina Schroder

Your purchase of Soylent supports the development of sustainable technologies we believe are the most promising for ending food insecurity and improving quality of nutrition around the world.

If you want to help us in our efforts, help spread the word. For every Friend Referral, we donate $1 to WFP USA!

Why Hydrograss Can Work:

  1. Hydroponic grass modules are owned by entrepreneurial Sahrawi refugees and their families. Growing hydroponic grass and hydrograins allow these vulnerable people to produce their own food and rely less on international aid.
  2. Hydroponic barley grass, as a primary hydroponic grass, provides highly nutritious food for livestock and humans.
  3. Hydroponic cultivation uses 90% less water than conventional agriculture. Hydroponic grasses like barley require a minimum amount of water, materials, inputs and labor. Hydroponic grass modular units are simply designed with locally available materials.
  4. The local adaptation of the units, supported by Soylent has helped to reduce the cost of each unit to 10%
  5. Because Hydroponic barley grass cultivation does not require soil and does not grow very tall, it can be vertically farmed, saving space and energy. This makes growing fresh food possible in an area, where no traditional cultivation was possible before.
  6. Hydroponic systems can be adapted to grow various feed and vegetable crops, which is the next step.
  7. Training and ongoing support, along with accessibility, storage and logistics, are a key part of the program.
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What Biased Policing Can Do

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It upended Matthew’s life — just because he was trying to see a movie while homeless and black

by Katie Wheeler


What Biased Policing Can Do was originally published in The Nib on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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codersquid
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chicago
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Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal - Why

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Click here to go see the bonus panel!

Hovertext:
Politics is like marriage - the goal is to win.

New comic!
Today's News:
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popular
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acdha
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Washington, DC
toddgrotenhuis
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Indianapolis
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1 public comment
jlvanderzwan
2 days ago
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Hmm... I really, REALLY wonder what this comic might be an allegory to... Haven't the slightest inkling...

In which Apple destroys my daughter’s iPad forever

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My daughter has an iPad mini. It is a second-hand one given very graciously by a friend when his daughter outgrew it.

My daughter has taken good care of this iPad, an astonishing thing given her age and the number of second and third hand iOS devices she had accidentally destroyed when younger.

She loves it and she had a lot of precious things in her iCloud account.

The other day, Apple locked her out of her iCloud account and her iPad. We don’t know why. The Apple support people don’t know why. I think it may have to do with when I modernized my AppleID to use an email address, which is what the iTunes account on the iPad is registered to.

My daughter knows her account name. She knows her password.  She did not forget either one. She did not lose her device. She did not do anything to trigger the Apple ID issue. The only thing we know is that it happened at roughly the same time the ApplePay person told me to update my AppleID. It may be related. It may not be.

She set up this Apple ID on her own around 2010 or so, when she was quite small and listening to her Mom, who said don’t give out personal information, she made up a birthday and answers to the security questions. 8 years later, she does not know that information and there’s no way for us to guess it.

Despite the fact that she owns the iPad, has the physical iPad, knows her id, and knows her password, there is no way for her to ever use the iPad again because we do not have a receipt for the iPad, nor does the kind gentleman who gave her the iPad. The Apple Store does not provide access to records from that far back, roughly 7 years ago. Also, her email provider deleted the account about 3-4 years ago and is no longer allowing email signups.

What’s more, Apple will not unlock her iCloud account to get all those drawings and letters she put there for “safety” even though she has never forgotten her password.

We dug up a previous iPad with a cracked screen that used the same iCloud account, and for which I did have the receipt. That was insufficient for Apple to unlock her device or to let her back into iCloud, even though both devices use the same account and both are physically in our possession.

My daughter is the owner of a brick, which is not getting replaced.

Update: Just for the lawls. I don’t know why it says Weds, Dec 31. This is the older mini with the cracked screen that I had the receipt for.

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MeFi: Learning Styles Myth

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Another nail in the coffin for learning styles. Their findings "provide strong evidence that instructors and students should not be promoting the concept of learning styles for studying and/or for teaching interventions. Thus, the adage of 'I can't learn subject X because I am a visual learner' should be put to rest once and for all."
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