Google Cannot Count Website Visitors

Actually, they can count but they cheat. In the early days of our TechnologyBloopers website, we received an email from Google Analytics indicating that we had only 26 visitors during December 2017. But our hosting company Omnis tallied 2523. Why the difference? Might Google have been deliberately counting lower so they could sell us AdWords?

QuickBooks Is Full of Problems

QuickBooks is a popular accounting app. We wonder why. Our better half is a financial professional with a CPA, and she is challenged to deposit funds because the process is so Byzantine. And a week ago QuickBooks let us write and print a check with a blank amount. Is that reasonable? We thought not. So we surfed the web with “problems with quickbooks” and found hundreds of items, including recommendations to convert QuickBooks Online to QuickBooks Desktop and a bunch dealing with printing errors.

First Steps for Driverless Vehicles

For at least the last two decades people (almost always male) have been tinkering with a wide variety of designs of self-driving cars that they have been dreaming of starting at least two decades earlier. The tinkering continues to be a very challenging pursuit. Finally, in early 2020 there was a modest step forward, in the form of autonomous grocery delivery vehicle from a low-profile company named Nuro that met the requirements of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. But it will take a lot of time before there will be vehicles with performance and creature comforts similar to cars driven by human beings. Perhaps those vehicles will initially be permitted only on freeways or well-defined streets and roads.

Facebook Enters E-Commerce Business

It had to happen. As the tech giants continue to grow, they start to overlap each other, simply because there are just not that many giant markets that they can pursue. In this case, it is Facebook invading Amazon’s e-commerce territory with its new “Shops” e-commerce service. It is useful to remember that a big chunk of Amazon’s revenue comes from third-party sellers. These sellers are mostly small, and they can now set up their own e-commerce on Facebook or Instagram.

Mobile Phones Are So Ubiquitous That Users Have Become Antisocial

If you are old enough, you can remember the days before mobile phones. If you wanted to call someone, you had to find a telephone someplace, be it in a home or other building or a phone booth. The importance of the invention was underlined by the fact that two companies—Motorola and Bell Labs–were racing to be first. The first call was by the winner Motorola’s Martin Cooper to Bell Labs’ Joel Engel. Today no one would leave home without his/her mobile phone. Unfortunately, people pay more attention to their phones than to the people around them.

Robocalls and Spam Calls

When a stranger calls you it is good to be on one’s guard. Chances are that it is either someone who wants to sell you something you don’t want or need or — worse yet — wants to cheat you out of your money.  If you are lucky the caller is only wasting your time with something totally uninteresting to you. Fortunately, in 2019 the Federal Communications Commission put into effect a new policy that gives the telephone companies the right to block the calls.

Why Does Your Car’s Battery Run Down?

Because of CoronaVirus, many people don’t drive very frequently. And AAA is answering a lot of calls from members who are faced with a car that cannot be started because the battery is dead. And experts counsel drivers to drive 20-30 miles at highway speed periodically to top up the charge. But even in normal times, there are a lot of things that could cause your battery to lose so much charge that you can’t start it.

Have You Ever Been Attacked by a Product’s Packaging?

It happens so often that it even has a name: “Wrap Rage”. But it isn’t funny. And the main culprit is plastic, which is frequently so strong that it requires a sharp knife and a lot of muscle. Sometimes the packaging is even stronger than the product inside. This situation is perfect for a visit to an emergency room, which these days likely is full of victims of the coronavirus. Frequently the culprit is clamshell packaging, which may be fine for protecting the product inside, but equally fine for injuring the purchaser.

A Car is a Personal Computer on Wheels

Computer on wheels

Depending on one’s taste and budget, a car is the fifth most expensive thing one will buy. But because electronic and computer technology continues to evolve, one will get more for one’s money. That’s because more and more of the car is really a computer. The best example is the Tesla; long-term writer/analyst Larry Magid makes the point.

The founder, CEO, and president of online retail company Amazon, Jeff Bezos has been the world’s richest person since 2017 and was named the “richest man in modern history” after his net worth increased to $150 billion in July 2018. He may not be personally responsible for using data about third-party sellers on the Amazon platform to develop competing products. But people he has hired are responsible for such actions.