Future Privacy, Writer’s Block, and Steam Libraries

Dear Brian,
Will there be problems with privacy in the future?

Absolutely.

There are problems with privacy right now, and there have been for generations. The only way we’ll even begin to gain legal protections for privacy is if we start lobbying and voting as a people for our own privacy.

Of course, legal protections make no difference because someone will always subvert the system. Consider the backlash in Europe against Google’s Street View cars, which had already traversed the entire U.S. multiple times before they were caught in Europe, where privacy is more important.

What’s necessary are mathematical protections in the form of strong encryption and anonymizing services. Tor is a step in the right direction, but even when using Tor, you’ll need a proxy and VPN. 

Even with all the online security in the world, you’re going to run into problems with privacy due to the coming proliferation of mixed reality.

Both augmented and virtual reality are about to change how we think about privacy. Whereas today we simply worry about someone taking our pic and posting it online, 360-degree cameras are going to take this to a whole new level.

As we speak multiple companies are pushing to create immersive spherical environments for every live event. You’ll soon be able to watch the Super Bowl from the 50-yard line, the VIP booth, standing next to a cheerleader, or sitting on anyone’s lap in the stadium. Whenever you’re in a public space, you’ll need to worry about such things.

Even today you could be walking by someone in public who’s using Google Glass or another augmented reality headset (even a drone) that’s showing them your personal information. The amount of technology you need to worry about these days is astounding.

Dear Brian,
What is the best way to deal with writer’s block?

The best way to deal with writer’s block is to relax and walk away. Do something else to keep your mind busy like watch TV, talk to a friend, go sightseeing somewhere scenic, read a book, etc.

You could always try drugs – here’s a piece I wrote about the best cannabis sativa strains I use to overcome writer’s block. Be careful not to overuse drugs, as they’re very dangerous and could lead to adverse reactions, including an overdose death.

Meditation and yoga are great ways to center your mind and keep pushing as well.

Keep in mind the longer you work in any creative profession, the more likely you are to get writer’s block. It’s unavoidable. Every up has a down, and maintaining balance is essential. Creative artists who want to stay productive for the long haul need to accept the ups and downs.

If you’re a creative professional with writer’s block, then it’s not time to write. It’s time to gather data, review statistics, create spreadsheets and databases, and work on basic operational tasks.

Dear Brian,
How do people have large Steam Libraries? Is there a way to get free Steam games or heavily discounted games?

People with large Steam libraries bought a lot of games. The platform has been around for a decade, and you can gather a lot of games in that time.

There are plenty of free games available on Steam, like Smite, for example.

I get a lot of free Steam games from attending video game conferences and trade shows like E3 and PAX Prime as a media analyst. Because of this, PR reps often send me free review codes.

You can also find discounted Steam games and bundles throughout the year (especially during holidays) and you can be gifted games from friends.

Shopping on Steam is no different than shopping anywhere else. Vigilance and dedication to find discounts and deals pays off, so spend some time learning the cycles and playing the game.

Brian Penny FishbowlBrian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer. His work appears in High Times, Huffington Post, Fast Company, The Street, and Hardcore Droid.

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Brian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer.

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