Android and iPhone Please Fix App Permissions

About apps’ permission requirements…

Everyone must know by now that there are major issues with ALL apps…. in that the *descriptions* of app permissions very often don’t match the actual reason why they are needed.  This is plaguing the entire smartphone world.  I think that very soon Google (Android) and Apple (iPhone) will fix this problem.  I hope so.

All they need to do is…. Give all app developers a new field to fill in for the app store, called, “Why we need this permission“.

In the meantime, we must either do a google search to find out why, or ask the developers themselves why.  Most app publishers already have a web page or a blog entry specifically to answer that question: “Why does your app need these permissions?”  But the app stores could easily provide this information directly from the devs to the users…  on a permission by permission basis…  at the point of asking for the permissions.  As in…

Access Camera Roll   ( why does the app need this ? )   <—-click here

Please Google and Apple…. fix this.

And Another Thing About Permissions That Needs Fixed

Every permission being asked for should clearly specify in a table… whether this info/data will be used only locally within the app…. or if the data will every potentially can be sent out of the device unencrypted…. or both.  As in this example….

used locally within app  can be sent out of device unencrypted
Identity           Yes  Yes

Camera Roll    Yes   No



One of the Most Important Causes of 2016

Everything in your life should be end-to-end encrypted.  It’s so easy today, there’s no excuse not to.  Big Brother governments, NSA, and global corporations, all with no morals, are spying on your every phone call and communication.  If you still don’t understand why privacy is so crucial for you, read this:

I choose to reject spying, and demand privacy, as much as possible in my life.  I recommend these free tools as necessary in today’s world:

Email:  Tutanota  ( sign up at )
Chat:  Telegram  ( install and use Secret Chat )
Phone Calls and SMS:  Signal  ( install )

Computer:  Lantern  ( install set to “Proxy All Traffic” )

Phone:  Psiphon  ( install )

Web Browsing:  Tor Browser  ( install )
Money:  Bitcoin  ( install Airbitz Wallet )

If you want to communicate with me, please use the above tools…. for all of our sake.  Thank you.

Tutanota, Please Fight Spam Effectively

I want to use Tutanota as my primary email address. However, if/when I forward all of my email to my address, I get thousands of spam messages per day. Gmail effectively blocks spam. I don’t know what algorithms they use. Maybe it’s top secret. But we need an effective way to truly block spam…. before tutanota can be used as a primary email address.

Worst case: Make a "whitelist" option…. where the user can enter and maintain a list of email addresses ALLOWED to send me mail.

Dear Google Support ( which doesn’t exist ),

I am using my Android phone and am getting "Account Action Required" notifications. It appears to want to verify my mobile phone number. However, everything is being displayed in a foreign language (Thai). The SMS option doesn’t send an SMS at all. I assumed that the other option was a voice call. I was right. But the voice that calls me is in Thai language. I cannot understand Thai language and I cannot change any of it to ENGLISH language. It’s a ridiculous bug / oversight.

Dear Singapore Airport

Your free Internet is a joke. Nobody traveling to Singapore has ROAMING here. Why would you require an sms verification? That’s so ancient. Just give people freaking free Internet…

If a device uses it every day or abuses it, block that device. What are you so worried about? This is 2015 already.

By the way, the self service kiosks are completely useless as they are located  out of reach inside a restricted area of the gate which nobody can access until immediately before boarding.   Useless.

And why on Earth would you require my passport number and expiration date and Birthdate!?!?   Such sensitive private information just for a few minutes of Internet access!?!?   I’m not buying some real estate…. It’s only free wifi…..   Geez!

Meanwhile, neither of us can use your free Internet here.

PS – Why does Singapore have no trash cans!?   What’s up with that?   None in the airport.   None on the city streets.   It’s crazy.

Suggestions for Uber

Connecting with your Uber driver at venues that have huge crowds (i.e. places that often have long public taxi queues) like major Airports, Cruise Terminals, Major Malls, and major Tourist Attractions… seems to be a big problem.  Often the drivers are not even allowed to enter — only taxis and buses are allowed to enter… or there is too much traffic and/or huge of crowds, making it impossible to find each other… or they are not allowed to stop on that street at all.
(1)  My Suggestion for Uber is:  Uber should automatically designate, and suggest, a nearby alternate meeting place — one that is much less trafficked, where normal cars are allowed to go to, and where cars are allowed to stop and pick up passengers.  Ideally, that location should be one that offers free wifi that is simple to access.  The app should direct both the passenger and the driver to one specific designated alternate pickup location for each major venue.  It should be one that can easily be walked to, even if dealing with large wheeled luggage.
(2)  My Other Suggestion is:   Uber should provide in-app chat feature for communicating with your assigned driver in real time… even when you don’t have a local SIM card (i.e. when you have access to a local free wifi service only).
(3)  Finally, I would also like to see the ability to book a trip without any local SIM card or WiFi at all.  I don’t know how that would work, but it would be awesome to come up with a solution for that.  There are times when you’re in a foreign country for only a couple of days and you don’t have a local SIM card, and you don’t have wifi, but you need to use Uber.   Maybe by calling a local telephone number, and telling a secret code to the operator, and telling the operator your exact location…. and the operator would be able to initiate a trip on my account.  It might be easy to make a local call by borrowing someone’s telephone who has local service.  The “secret code” could be tied to all trips initiated using that secret code…. on my account.   The app could give me a secret code at any time — even without internet access.  Or…. some other clever way to dispatch an Uber car when you have no wifi and no local SIM card.