Thursday, April 12, 2018

"OK Google," stop recording everything I say

While setting up my new Google Plus profile, Google asked me to do a "Privacy Checkup" in my security settings. I did and learned that Google has been recording every word I ever said using my phone's voice recognition software, used to type text messages, "OK Google" requests, and other functions converting voice to text. (NOTE: it was NOT recording phone calls or anything I typed with my fingers.)

The reason Google was doing this was to learn my speech habits to convert it to text more accurately. It also said I was the only person who could access my archive. But it kinda creeped me out.

Fortunately it gave me a  way to shut it all down. Here's how:

In a web browser sign in to your Google account. Find "Personal info and privacy". Select "Manage your Google Activity."

Click on "Go to activity controls."

Scroll down to "Voice and audio activity." Turn the slide switch off ("paused"). This turns off any future recording but does NOT delete any existing recordings.

Click on "Manage activity." You'll then see a list of all your speech to text activity ever. You can even play back every word you spoke.

In the left column click "Delete activity by". A pop-up will appear to delete your recordings by date. Under "Delete by date" click the drop-down menu and select "All time". Then click "Delete." All of your archived recordings will be deleted.

You're welcome.


LED Painting

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Congress behaves. Really!

I watched about an hour of the Mark Zuckerberg Senate hearings on C-SPAN this afternoon. It was the least partisan discussion I've seen in Washington for a very long time. Democrats and Republicans alike treated Zuckerberg with respect and their overall attitude was "We've got a problem, let's work through it." 

Sigh.

If they can take that approach to social media, they should be able to do the same with health care, gun violence, police brutality, global warming, environmental protection, infrastructure, transportation, tax policy, deficits, public safety, and more. Our government would then be working as the founding fathers intended.