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Samsung logo in blue text against white background

As many already know, Samsung released an update for the Galaxy A70 phone, which brought Android 10 to that device.

It was a terrible release fraught with severe bugs:  It led to, amongst others, the following issues:

  1. Camera.
  2. Battery.
  3. Heating.
  4. Various applications, such as OneNote sync.
  5. Charging.
  6. Device bricking.
  7. Clicking noise.
  8. Etc.

It is difficult for devs in isolation to completely test an OS update before release. Once customers take possession of their devices, they customize it to their liking.

So it is impossible that Samsung’s devs can test an upcoming update in every real world scenario.

I was also surprised when at the start of the Android 10 update development it was indicated that there would be no public betas, closed or open.

Given the fiasco that the last release was, it may make all the sense for Samsung to conduct either a closed or an open public beta testing programme, for a period of time. I hope Samsung considers this.

The kind of disruption and pain the last [and now pulled] update caused should never happen again.

Android 10 Focus Mode.Screenshot

I always wanted a way to pause or suspend apps on my phone without the need to root my device. This was absolutely necessary because today’s devices can be unproductive if one isn’t careful. At any given point, all sorts go on, with notifications, reminders, etc.

So I started using the Android Enterprise mode for this purpose. I would install apps there & simply turn off Work Mode when I needed to focus. Android Enterprise itself brings with it a management overhead. It’s not so simple to deploy & can require a subscription to MDM, EMM, etc., providers.

Now with Android 10 Google has solved this problem, with Focus Mode. You can setup different modes & apply settings according to your needs: which apps you want running given each mode type you setup, etc. The only main thing missing is the ability to schedule it. That would’ve been awesome, especially with Bixby routines, on Samsung devices. I hope this comes with a future update.

So, if you’re on Android 10 & haven’t given Focus Mode a shot, please do. It just might help with your productivity.

Saw a mini docu type series on the war of the Ottomans to take Constantinople. This stood out:

The Christian rulers had slaves. LOL. So, get this, the last wave Sultan Mehmet sent against the Byzantine Christians & their Genoese mercenaries was an elite unit of his Turkish army, largely made up of ex slaves of the Christians he had rehabilitated, raised, nurtured, trained & then armed.

That resonated with me. Christians had no business with slavery like that. Such poetic justice.

Constantinople had other massive flaws. How it secured itself, its relationships with other major kingdoms, its purpose, etc.

Its seemingly impregnable defences were laid down from a bygone era. One where Rome was at the height of its power.

As you well know, Constantinople is Istanbul today.


The series is available on Netflix at the following link:



You can get some more information on the series at the following IMDB link:


I think the disruption that happened to the telecoms industry is happening to finance.

In telecoms it got easier to abstract services, & this led to pressures on pricing.

Software companies could easily launch their own OTT voice services, for instance. I remember back when the Cisco guys were saying this was coming.

I didn’t understand it then because I wasn’t seeing what they were seeing, but I observed & understood that trend.

Finance is next.

Government & incumbents will evolve & also try to preserve the old frameworks, but the changes will come.

Imagine your favourite brand, or IT services provider, or your [excellent] employer being able to become your bank or financial services provider.

There’s a new Star Trek series out. Star Trek Picard. Like, featuring the real Picard [Patrick Stewart] from Enterprise. Enterprise was my intro into Star Trek. Saw a bit of the earlier ones with Kirk, but Enterprise was the series I watched as a kid.

Picard is well made. Apparently retired as an admiral. Data is there. Much older now. He has a daughter.

Seems this season will feature the Romulans. The last series, Discovery was about the Klingons. It was also well made. Didn’t like the portrayal of an alternative lifestyle though.

The very famous 7 of 9 [reformed Borg] will be in this season. She was in Star Trek Voyager. The next one after Next Generation [which was the original series with Picard, Data, Geordi, etc.].

The jury is still out for me. Maybe by episode 3 I’ll know whether I like it or not.

It’s got a solid IMDB rating so far & the news says CBS All Access records were broken on its premiere.


Intelix logo with the words "security briefing" below it

Intelix Security Briefing: 26/01/20
Target Area: USA, China, UK, Russia, UAE, Middle East, Asia.

  1. Russia: Political changes are afoot in Russia, with a new choice for Prime Minister being nominated by Vladimir Putin, the President. There are also efforts underway to amend its constitution to create an avenue for Putin to retain some power after he leaves the role of the President due to constitutional limits. Russia remains a stable & leading nation in many ways. Read more: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-01-16/putin-s-premier-pick-wins-backing-amid-kremlin-overhaul-push?srnd=premium-middle-east
  2. USA: The House has delivered impeachment charges to the Senate. While this will no doubt generate a lot of political activity, as American elected officials tend to take their responsibilities seriously, we do not expect that this will imperil the country’s governance in any way. The USA has very established democratic institutions & is quite matured. It has also shown itself capable of meeting its security responsibilities both at home & abroad, despite the impeachment distractions. Read more: https://www.google.com/amp/s/thehill.com/homenews/house/478490-house-delivers-impeachment-articles-to-senate%3famp
  3. UK/Global: Travelex which provides financial services to travelers globally has been hacked. The hackers are demanding for ransom payments. Travelex is announcing that it has already taken significant remedial action & its services are gradually coming back up. If you’re a Travelex customer & have been impacted by this hack, please take precautionary action immediately. Read more: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.bbc.com/news/amp/business-51017852
  4. USA/UAE: The UAE government will be sponsoring the USA’s pavilion at the Dubai 2020 Expo. Estimated cost: $60m. This is being done in order to further cement the cordial relationship between these 2 countries. Read more: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-01-16/us-says-its-pavilion-at-expo-2020-in-dubai-sponsored-by-uae?srnd=premium-middle-east
  5. USA/China: A new Chinese virus is causing some concern amongst leading global health authorities. It is a Coronavirus/flu virus & has already led to 2 known fatalities. US & Chinese authorities are currently screening air passengers. Wuhan in China is a hotspot. Avoid non-essential travel to Wuhan. Please follow all air travel safety recommendations for your journeys. Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/health-51148303

Intelix logo with the words "security briefing" below it

Intelix Security Briefing: 19/01/20
Target Area: The Philippines, Nigeria, UAE, Middle East, W. Africa.

  1. The Gambia: It has warned its ex leader, Yahya Jammeh, not to return. Jammeh was forced into exile by Gambia’s neighbours, with efforts involving Nigeria. His return is unlikely to be supported by those countries. The Gambia continues to be a stable country & a popular tourist destination. Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-51082371
  2. Nigeria: a little rift has emerged between British Airways [BA] & the Federal Aviation Authority of Nigeria [FAAN] over the diversion of a BA flight from Nigeria’s Murtala Mohammed Airport [LOS] to Ghana’s Kotoko International Airport, in Accra. BA alleges landing conditions at LOS were unsafe. FAAN allegedly temporarily closed the runway at LOS. They deny this. BA is a leading global airline with an excellent safety record. FAAN, on the other hand has had safety issues over the years. We’re monitoring this issue. Read more: https://nairametrics.com/2020/01/11/british-airways-faan-divided-over-flight-diversion/
  3. Lake Chad Area: similar to Nigeria’s North East, this area is a hotbed of religious rebellion. The Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) operates in this area & continues military interdiction missions, support by the French military. Avoid non-essential travel to this area. Read more: https://www.vanguardngr.com/2020/01/mnjtf-kills-iswap-top-commander-khalifa-umar-three-others/
  4. Iran: the fallout from the downing of the Ukrainian passenger plane in Iran continues. Protests are ongoing, with protesters calling for justice. There have also been negative international reactions. Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-crash/our-enemy-is-here-iran-protesters-demand-that-leaders-quit-after-plane-downed-idUSKBN1ZA0X6
  5. The Philippines: The Taal volcano has been spewing ash & the country is preparing for a major eruption. Factor in possible spillover effects into the rest of the country from a logistics perspective, if travelling there, or around that region. If you have loved ones inns region, ensure they are safe & have taken the necessary precautions. Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/philippines-evacuating-residents-watching-for-tsunami-after-taal-volcano-spews-ash/2020/01/12/aa779b26-3550-11ea-a1ff-c48c1d59a4a1_story.html
  6. Information Tech: Microsoft will soon be releasing a Windows update on Tuesday 14/01/20 to fix a critical flaw in a crypto component present in all versions of Windows. Please run/install all pending updates via Windows Update. Read more: https://krebsonsecurity.com/2020/01/cryptic-rumblings-ahead-of-first-2020-patch-tuesday/

DreamHost Logo

DreamHost has updated its privacy policy & Terms of Service. Summary of what’s changed:

Privacy Policy Changes, Effective 01/01/2020

  • We now explicitly state that we do not sell your personal information to anybody. This isn’t a change of policy — we’re just being more clear about it.
  • We provide a means for California residents to submit requests to see the data we’ve collected about them via email or phone.

Continued use of your DreamHost account indicates that you accept these updates. If you have any questions about these changes, please don’t hesitate to write to us at privacypolicy@dreamhost.com.

GitHub Logo

GitHub’s Android app is now out, in limited release as a beta. It is being made available to those who signed up earlier to test it.
Here’s the original comms from GitHub to those who signed up:

Thanks for signing up for the GitHub for Android beta. It’s here, and as one of the early waitlist members, we’re letting you know a little early.Visit Google Play to download the app—participation is limited. We appreciate your feedback to make the experience ready for general availability soon!

DreamHost will be upgrading its webmail interface for all DreamHost email customers!
DreamHost is an amazing hosting company. We know this first-hand. We use their services.
Here’s the message that is being sent to subscribers:

Please note, this upgrade will require a brief maintenance window on Tuesday 1/21 starting at 4pm and ending at 10pm PST where them DreamHost webmail site may be temporarily unavailable. However, message delivery will not be affected, and you’ll also have uninterrupted access to your accounts via desktop and mobile IMAP email clients.
Our new webmail interface uses Roundcube, a popular and modern webmail client that receives regular updates to add helpful new features.

After the update you’ll receive:

  • Drag-and-drop message management
  • Better support for large mailboxes
  • Spellchecking!
  • Threaded messages
  • “Find as you type” address book integration
  • A responsive, mobile-friendly skin
  • Attachment previews
  • An improved email backend, with quick & reliable logins
  • An open-source backend (Okay, this one’s for us. We love open source.)

What’s NOT changing:

  • Your email address(es) and passwords will stay the same.
  • You’ll continue to use the same webmail login URL: https://webmail.dreamhost.com/
  • Existing messages, folders, and filters will remain in place
  • Mobile and desktop IMAP email clients will keep working
    like normal. (But you’re still invited to log in to webmail and enjoy that new interface smell)
  • Your monthly bill. Whether email is bundled with your hosting plan, or you’ve added individual email accounts to your domain, this upgrade won’t cost anything extra!

You told us you wanted even more power out of a webmail client, and we’re absolutely confident that this upgrade will deliver! We can’t wait for you to experience one of the best web-based email experiences on the planet, and we’re working behind the scenes to ensure the launch goes swimmingly.

Remember, there’s no action required on your part. Just kick back, hit refresh, and prepare to be blown away…as much as a webbased email client can blow a person away. Which for some of you? That’s a lot.


The Happy DreamHost Webmail Improvement Team

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