Wednesday, November 27, 2019

The Profit: Swanson's Fish Market

I am posting this webpage that was archived from a controversial episode of The Profit. This is the Swanson's side of the story, and I am posting it here for posterity. This was put on their webpage by Larissa Swanson. I am not sure which side to believe. It was archived from
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The Truth

Me notifying Marcus via text weeks prior to him accusing us of not telling him about the foreclosure process,  which he said started in 2012?? No it started months into filming. AUGUST 26TH

 A picture of the lien he said he did not tell him about either, but this is a 'Lien release' which means he already paid and took care of it in 2012. There are also no bank liens on the building like he states  

The statement from the insurance, showing they received $903,204.70 but there was a 10% adjuster rate, so they only got $817,900 out of everything. The building cost 1.2 so my parents actually ended up losing out and having to take $ out of  their retirement fund.  

Me texting Amber Mazzola (the Executive producer) right after the last scene with the fight between my father and Marcus, she didn't even have the decency to pick up my call or really respond.

<--Me speaking to two different producers about not getting any money after Marcus made me negotiate and promise to pay them the next day. JULY 30TH

   Hi my name is Larissa, I am Gary and Sue Swanson's daughter.  As you know, my family was just featured on, 'The Profit'. Unfortunately after being aired, we were not only humiliated but left with no chance to explain our side of the story.  Behind the scenes, there was a lot that went on that no one knows about.  For example, certain situations were manipulated, staged etc.  I am writing this because I cannot keep quiet anymore and believe we were unfairly represented on the show. I understand it's my word against a huge network but I would not be coming out with all of this if it were not true. Below at the bottom I posted some photos and documents of proof. I ask that before you place judgment, you please read our side. I know this is a little long, but thank you for taking the time to read it. If you have anything to say you can go to our contact page.  Thank you again and God bless!
   I first want to start by saying, if I thought my parents were actual criminals I would not have written to the show.  In my heart today, I still know that is the furthest thing from the truth.  I am who I am because of them, and they raised me well. 
   The filming process started in June and ended in September.  We did not film for four weeks like he stated, we filmed for four months and did not see a penny for that entire time. When we sat down to do the deal they told us before hand that if he writes us a check, it was only for show purposes and we would have to hand it right back. He also stated that he put the money in an escrow account but that never happened. As far as making changes, he took out a counter and purchased 15k worth of equipment, which we are still very grateful for!
   My mother mentioned how she had a painter at the house and Marcus acted surprised and became "angry". The first day of filming we told Marcus and the production crew that we are slowly fixing up our house to put it on the market. My parents were putting a lot of their bills to the side during that entire time (which is how the foreclosure process started).  Marcus kept promising every week that he would give us the payment in exchange for our building. I was asked to negotiate with our vendors and he had me promise to pay these people the next DAY with a certified check, but he never followed through with that either. One of these vendors is now suing us because they are so angry. Three months after we shook hands with him, things grew pretty bad so we finally approached him about dispersing the money. He offered us 100k in the meantime but his lawyer still wanted a title transfer of the building? My parent's lawyer cautioned us many times not to do it because he was scared that they could take it for such a small amount, so we had to decline.
   August 26th I was served papers by a sheriff from Kasowitz (the firm who mortgaged our building). I notified Marcus immediately via text, and we were not aware that an actual foreclosure process already started. The building also had a contractor/mechanical lien put on it almost 4 years ago and my parents paid that in 2010. The lien release was never brought to city hall to be taken care of and we explained that to Marcus.  
   To touch upon the insurance accusations, in the beginning my father messed up his numbers and shame on him for that. My parents only received $817k from the insurance settlement and this statement is posted below.  The building and expenses cost $1.2M and my parents ended up having to pay 400K out of their pocket. Also, their tenant next door did not have insurance!  Therefore they had to pay $200K to cover them, which ended up pushing the whole project back a couple months. My father clarified that with Marcus immediately and also showed documents and receipts. In regards to the fire, we had an ex-employee at the time that was fired for doing drugs in the bathroom and stealing from our register. Shortly after he started stalking my family, driving by our house, going through our garbage and sending my father threats, which he later got in trouble for. When the fire happened he was seen across the street at a gas station watching the building burn down at 4 am and my father pointed him out to the police immediately. The authorities attempted to investigate but never actually found out how and why it happened. I can promise you it was not my father.
   During that Christmas time we were working out of a tent in front of our building that only had it's foundation (still under construction). My father still wanted to serve our customers so the night before he had ten different employees working until 2 am in the warehouse prepping all of the orders for the next day. Around 3:30-4 am a fire erupted. After the fire department showed up they found the source of how it started, and completely ruled out arson. Before everyone left and locked up, someone pushed a table up against a cheap extension cord, and it eventually caught fire burning the entire downstairs. There was 150k worth of product and orders for the next morning in that fire!
   When the boat happened he moved it out of the marina and put it in someone's backyard before hurricane Sandy hit. The motors ended up getting destroyed, so it turned into a salvaged project. My father bought that boat 15 years ago when they were in a better financial situation.  It is also not a yacht like everyone is saying; it is a 30-foot boat.  Marcus knew about the boat after the 2nd day of filming.  Their 'story-line producer' was there for three straight days during the filming and asked my mom to bring my dad outside and confront him about it; the entire thing was staged, but the executive producer Amber told me later on the phone that night not to worry about us looking bad because they were going to "tie a nice bow on it at the end." If we knew they were going to blindside us like that we would not have cooperated.
  With all the family drama they portrayed, they failed to mention the struggles my family experiences on a day-to-day basis.  My little brother has a serious mental illness and was diagnosed 3 years ago. It has been a long road and has completely devastated all of us. We are constantly in and out of hospitals and have paid over 100K in medical bills including hospital, ambulances and medications. My brother was on the show but they blurred his face, he was standing next to me when Marcus said, "I'm 100% in charge now". The last thing I want to do it air our personal business, but they failed to present that a portion of my parent's expenses have been put towards medical.
  My father also spoke about how much money he lost two years ago when he invested in a small restaurant next door. One of the owners they partnered with took advantage, so he went to court to break the contract and won. He was never able to get his investment back so in the end he really lost. The whole thing only made their financial situation a lot worse.
   My mother never even wanted to film, but was told if she did not show up the deal was off. I know they wanted her there because they knew they could get drama out of her. My mother has not been a part of the business since last March, so why did they need to focus on her so much? During the 4-month process she had three deaths in her family, including her father, cousin and aunt. A few of the days she showed up late because she was upset and exhausted. After the death of her father she told Marcus that she wanted to move to Florida and live with her mother for a little, but she ended up staying just to film and make everyone happy. My mother was also medicated on Xanax because of everything, which may also explain why she acted like the way she did. They got her so upset one-day that she ended up having a mental breakdown. I have NEVER in my life seen her so hysterical that it brought me to tears seeing her that way. Halfway through filming she agreed to sell the BMW even though it was leased, it was still a sign of showing sacrifice. We also filmed a scene where we taped for sale signs on her car windows! She wanted to prove to Marcus that she would do anything for the deal but obviously they did not air that.  I personally believe that BMW may have sponsored them for this episode but I could be totally wrong about that!   
   I also wanted to talk about the employees chipping in for product- that I agree was not right AT ALL. The employees chipped in on a few occasions and they got their money back at the end of the day.  My father had vendors who would show up in the morning wanting cashiers checks for product and neither him or my mother were there to get to the bank, they should have had a check prepared!! I still think there is no excuse for that, but they have been making serious changes since the show..
  Lastly I want to touch base on a few things people are mentioning about myself, which is the bag I had on me. I have seen dozens of comments and several media sites about it and I can't help but laugh at this point. I do agree that it looked bad but I never purchased it, my boyfriend of two years got me that for Christmas. My mother also leased that car two years ago before things got really bad. She has been a customer of BMW for almost 10 years and because their credit is so poor they were the only ones who would give her a lease.  I agree with Marcus still that the car sends out a bad message.  My parents have already agreed to downsize to something less expensive. I am sad I have to explain all of this, but we did agree to be on a reality show so I can't complain!
   The Profit never wanted to do a deal before they walked in our door. I had a pit in my stomach right when we shook hands with him, and should have listened to my intuition to stop filming.  When has Marcus ever done a real estate deal? Why wouldn't he do a title search right away? I do believe that he did not like my parents and could not connect with them.  I have noticed how disconnected they have become after everything they have gone through and it breaks my heart.  I think Marcus and Amber judged them before getting to know their real story and situation.  Kicking a family while they are already down is just plain wrong
   I feel I need to get the word out on how awful this whole experience was for us. I know this is reality TV but I am appalled over Machete productions and how they operate. My father is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet and has literally put his heart and soul into Swanson's since he was 12 years old.  He also had a good reputation in the town of Fairfield. They were getting threatening emails, calls and people driving by their house.  It was SCARY and I believe they took things way too far with us. Do not forget that we are all human beings here and we all make mistakes, which we have learned from. One thing I will say is that we have most definitely learned a lot from Marcus and we are thankful for that! I am besides myself and just sad how they can be content with slandering/destroying a families name and 41-YEAR-OLD business just to get higher ratings.  
UPDATE:January 18th 2017-  Although it says we are closed on google, we are not, we are still open and currently debt free! My father has finally been able to pay down his vendors etc.  Since I have posted this letter i have had numerous people from other past episodes contact me, and their stories are very similar and some of them were screwed over even worse than us. These people are too scared to speak out because we all had to sign contracts that if we talk about the show afterwards we will be sued for 1 million dollars.

This may be a little blurry for some people, but this is something a stranger put together and sent us.  It shows the date on the check JULY 2ND.  Marcus claimed my father lied about paying his mortgage and tried to say he hid the fact that the building was being foreclosed before he even got there. If you go online it shows we were served in August and the foreclosure process started several months into filming, that is why they blurred the document's date on camera because THEY were the ones who were lying.
Marcus is telling people that our business is closed because of a glitch on google, when I tweeted them both and told them that we are in fact NOT closed he literally blocked me within 5 mins. May 24th, 2015

Market hours
The Profit
© 2014 by Larissa Swanson. All rights reserved

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

How to get rcs universal profile on any Android

1.) Enroll in Messages Beta and install

2.) Download Activity Launcher

3.) Clear the data of 'Carrier Services' and force stop 'Android Messages.' Edit: If you don't have 'Carrier Services' you can download it from the Play Store

4.)Open Activity Launcher

5.) Tap 'Recent Activities,' and in the menu choose 'All Activities.'

6.) Look for 'Messages'

7.) Tap it, then scroll until you find 'Set RCS Flags'

8.) After pressing it select 'ACS Url"' and in the menu select

9.) Select OTP Pattern, and in the menu click, YourlsMessenger\sverification\scode\sis\sG-(\d {6}). Edit: This appears to not be staying for some. It didn't stick for me either but my RCS still activated

10.) Click Apply Edit: sometimes clicking apply won't take you anywhere. Just go back and check messages

11.) Follow setup in Messages. Will take around three minutes.

Install Google's messages app v 5.2 or later.

It works. Tested on MetroPCS Moto e5 play on os 8.0. The articles out there neglect to mention that you have to install Google carrier services beforehand.

Here's the official features list:

It will be nice when this has links to other messaging services, Airbnb, Uber, WhatsApp, Facebook, etc....

I wonder what the two other servers that are in the RCS drop-down menu (iot and jibe) are for.

Some benefits I can see with "universal profile" RCS over standard text messaging:
You can send attachments of any filetype with a maximum size of 105 megabytes.

You have the ability to delete multiple messages at once without deleting the whole conversation.
Being able to share Google Assistant results
It is a universal chat service that eventually every text app will embrace

Here's some enhancements the app could use:
1. Set profile pic for individuals and groups
2. Set profile name for individuals
3. Better graphical sent, delivery and read indicators
4. Ability to see if the other person is online in a 1 to 1 conversation
5. Ability to indicate which message is being replied on
6. Lacks group administration capabilities

A need for public links for groups and separate, invite-only private groups, and admin controls. Basically they need slack.
It lacks threaded replies

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Lotus Organizer/Agenda vs WordPerfect InfoCentral Vs Outlook Vs OSAFoundation's Chandler

Stub placeholder for a future comparison:

Lotus Organizer/Agenda vs WordPerfect InfoCentral Vs Outlook Vs OSAFoundation's Chandler

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

UseNET Posting About David Asprey's 1st Entreprenurial Endeavor: A T-Shirt that says: "caffeine: my drug of choice"

I found this on usenet. Fun stuff!

Caffeine T-Shirtsby David Asprey  "Caffeine: my drug of choice" T-shirts with a picture   of the caffeine molecule on them.  High quality;   $12 including US shipping.  For more information   e-mail:


I also found this post, which mention's Dave's t-shirt:
In article , (Krister Lindmark) writes:
>In article , wrote:
>HEY YOU ALL!! (Sorry for shouting)
>I'm kind of getting tired of seeing these ads here. I hope I'm not the only
>I drink my coffee vprikusku and no milk. Not vnakladku or vprigljadku.

Krister (et al.):

As I have stated in previous posts, I think some kind of compromise is
needed here.   As a coffee drinker, I just happen to live in an area
that doesn't have many coffee houses or sources for good beans (the dreaded
brand XXX is everywhere here in Iowa).  Further, I am constantly exploring new
sources and while I have several 'favorite' mail order places, I am not
a 'one-vendor' consumer.   Therefore, the ads for coffee which have appear
here from time to time have been a great resource for me.  

Without them, I would have never enjoyed Seth's Capulin coffee or the wonderful
roasts from Speeder & Earls or Monsoon Malabar from Rileys Coffee and
Fudge or half a dozen other vendors mentioned here.   I wouldn't know
about Peet's or Starbucks and while a few here might consider that a 
blessing, they have never been forced to drink the dreaded brand XXX. I
would also not be in possession of a couple of Dave Asprey's T-shirts.

Having several roasters/vendors online here has definitely added to 
the quality of the group.  They have been a rich resource for coffee-related
information.  I don't want to discourage their involvement here.

But I share your concern about the groups deteriorating into massive piles 
of hype.  It certainly hasn't happened yet and I hope it doesn't.

Tim "I am both the Lewis and the Clark of the coffee universe" Nemec   

Thursday, August 8, 2019

The Story Behind Cisco's Hold Music - "Opus One"

Resurrected this blog post from the internet archive about the Cisco CallManager's hold music:

This story is about a piece of music you’ve already heard, although you may not have realized at the time. It’s that song that has you tapping your feet while you’re on hold with customer service, or humming along to the piano riff halfway through.
The song is called Opus No. 1, by Tim Carleton and Darrick Deel. It’s never been on a Top 40 list or gotten radio play, and yet it’s heard around the world by the millions of people who are placed on hold each day.
Darrick and Tim’s story actually begins back in 1989, when as teenagers and friends they recorded a song in their garage. Unfortunately, they didn’t go on to rockstar fame and fortune, but years later Darrick would go on to take a job with Cisco. In his role building Cisco’s first version of IP phones, he was aware of Cisco’s need for a piece of music to use as the default hold music for the new system. Cut to several years later, and their high school composition has become the hold music for the world’s most popular phone systems with over 65 million IP phones sold. With that, Opus No. 1 has left the safety of Darrick and Tim’s childhood recording studio and entered earworm status.
Now Darrick and Tim’s story has gone viral, with their famed hold music being heard everywhere from an episode of NPR’s This American Life, to articles in The Atlantic, to NBC and Network World. You can hear more about Darrick’s rise to hold music stardom from him here:

Sound familiar? Darrick says that he chose the music because of its specific auditory qualities, and he seems to have his pulse on what people like to listen to; A quick search on Youtube and you’ll find thousands of comments from people who call into the hold music or put in on loop simply because they find it soothing and comforting.
And what’s next? Potentially a book and movie deal in the works? To Darrick, he’s happy as long as people keep calling in and being placed on hold.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

How do you remember two-factor authentication while staying logged out of Google, Facebook, etc…?

Users used to be able to click a check box called “remember me” which did not have to checked. This adds an extra level of security on shared PCs.

Here's an example:

Login to facebook. Enter mfa/2fa sms or totp code. _Don’t_ check the box to “remember me”. By not checking remember me, you would be logged out when you closed your browser. Upon the next login, you would not need to enter the mfa/2fa code again, as this machine is now remembered, you would only need to login. Or you could set the sites cookie’s to be removed when you close the browser by setting your browser to “forget session cookies” for that specific website. But doing these steps now have the effect of logging you out of the website, AND forgetting the 2fa/mfa authentication.

Paleo honey Dijon vinaigrette

I used this mustard recipe :

And this dressing recipe:

Also I used raw mustard seed (I used 1/7th of the amount of mustard needed) and Apple Cider vinegar instead of white vinegar, and 3 tbsp of honey. It came out tasting amazing!

Android app automatic update bullishness

I've done something I haven't done in 8 years: I have enabled automatic app updates on my Android phone. Give me your most bloated, memory hogging apps and useless feature creep!

I still have disabled updates on these apps for varied reasons:

  • Chrome 71 - 72+ runs slowly with the new material design updates
  • Evernote 7 - newer versions are too bloated
  • Facebook v 93 - the king of memory hogs. It's the absolute worst offender. With older, slower phones, I removed the Facebook app and used the mobile web version and it simply was a lot more responsive. To keep the news feed responsive, it constantly is pulling down a huge amount of data and images. If you still need notifications, it supports browser notifications or you can install Facebook lite, which is the html5 version of the app; it really is a lot lighter on resources.
  • Acr voice call recorder 22 - the newer versions still record calls buthide the number called since Android has increased system security.
  • (Google) Play videos - I don't use it
Other than the apps above, most apps run pretty well on newer phones. Another thing that may have contributed to the snappy feel of the newer Android phones is the 8.0/Oreo OS.

Monday, March 4, 2019

Increasing The Resistant Starch In Rice To Make It Ketosis-Friendly With Coconut Oil

If you like rice, there's a way to prepare it to be lower-calorie and starch-resistant, and it's backed by science. Here's the original study: The Glycemic Potential of White and Red Rice Affected by Oil Type and Time of Addition Bhupinder Kaur, Viren Ranawana, Ai-Ling Teh, and C Jeya.K Henryy,  and here is the PDF of the original study from sci-hub. The abstract is pasted below:
Limited research exists on how different oil types and time of addition affect starch digestibility of rice. This study aimed to assess the starch digestibility of white and red rice prepared with 2 oil types: vegetable oil (unsaturated fat) and ghee (clarified butter, saturated fat) added at 3 different time points during the cooking process (“before”: frying raw rice in oil before boiling, “during”: adding oil during boiling, and “after”: stir-frying cooked rice in oil). Red rice produced a slower digestion rate than white rice. White rice digestibility was not affected by oil type, but was affected by addition time of oil. Adding oil “after” (stir-frying) to white or red rice resulted in higher slowly digestible starch. Red rice cooked using ghee showed the lowest amount of glucose release during in vitro digestion. The addition of ghee “during” (that is boiling with ghee) or “before” (that is frying rice raw with ghee then boiling) cooking showed potential for attenuating the postprandial glycemic response and increasing resistant starch content. This is the first report to show healthier ways of preparing rice. White rice with oil added “after” (stir-fried) may provide a source of sustained glucose and stabilize blood glucose levels. Boiling red rice with ghee or cooking red rice with ghee pilaf-style may provide beneficial effects on postprandial blood glucose and insulin concentrations, and improve colonic health. The encouraging results of the present study justify extending it to an in vivo investigation to conclusively determine the effect of time of addition of fat when rice is cooked on blood glucose homeostasis.
Rice is a predominant source of energy in most of Asia with excessive consumption of rice being implicated in the rise of type 2 diabetes. Stir-frying white rice can be a source of sustained glucose and provide a stabilizing effect on blood glucose levels. Boiling red rice with ghee or cooking red rice with ghee pilaf-style may provide beneficial effects on postprandial blood glucose and insulin concentrations. This suggests how a single technique of adding fat in the cooking of rice at certain time points may be a useful method in providing taste and lowering glycemia..

If you're doing bulletproof carb cycling/interval ketosis, it's best to do this on your higher-carb/non-keto cycle. However, the theory is that the coconut oil slows the absorption of carbohydrates, so that you do not get a spike of glucose and it is more like a prolonged carbohydrate release such as when you eat vegetables on Bulletproof ketosis.

When prepared in this way, it's safe to have on ketosis-inducing diets, such as the superior Bulletproof carb cycling/cyclical keto diet (which is better because being on ketosis non-stop is not good; here's why; or to summarize: The keto diet has some drawbacks, namely, thyroid issues, insomnia, dry eyes, and exhaustion, which could make it tough to sustain long-termCyclical keto diets give you all the benefits of keto without the side effects, making it easier to stick with.).

The theory is that the coconut oil slows the absorption so you do not get a spike of glucose; it's more like a prolonged release such as when you eat vegetables when in a state of ketosis.

As a general rule, any protein or fat cooked in the rice lowers the glycemic index; fried rice with meat and eggs is a low-GI food as long as the proportion of rice to protein/fat isn't too high.

My hack is to freeze the finished Rice in a large, shallow container (shallow to save vertical space and large because when it freezes, it will clump together) in the freezer immediately after cooking. It comes from an ancient Chinese medicine tradition that shows how long-cooked congee, also known as Rice Porridge, is very healing.

Related posts on man-made Arsenic levels in Rice:

More background posts on this which have further details and hacks:

Friday, January 4, 2019

Herbal/Caffeine-free Bulletproof Coffee / Tea for Adrenal Fatigue Sufferers

Coffee and possibly caffeine work by stimulating the adrenal glands, in essence using tomorrow's energy store (postnatal Jing in traditional Chinese medicine). Due to this and having adrenal fatigue, I have endeavored to make a caffeine and coffee-free version of bulletproof coffee? I've asked elsewhere but haven't gotten any decent answers. Below are the different variations that I have tried:
  • Yerba Mate - tastes good and works well, but not indicated for the liver if you have liver probems (most people with adrenal issues have endocrine system/liver problems in my humble opinion) and it has caffeine - of course, as a biohacker, health effects trumps taste. The same can be said about Gotu Kola; it taxes the liver but it is an adaptogen, it is not a stimulant, and it does not have caffeine.
  • Chaparral - a truly superior herb for the adrenal glands. Use with caution as it is a very powerful herb. It is also rich in Vitamin C.
  • traditional chinese medicine herbs from my acupuncturist - gross and bitter but gives good effects.
Haven't tried but I have heard of:
On a side note, what happened to the the full video version of Dave Asprey's Bulletproof podcast? Is it now iTunes or paid only? And why has he removed the ability to add comments to his videos on youtube?

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Microblog October 2, 2018

Pirates complaining about piracy! It's like howard stern's internal gag order on opie and anthony. Some "freedom of speech" advocate he is! As the commenter Simba Lion put it somewhat jokingly, Pirates arguing over licensing restrictions is ironic and stupid.

  • Sunday, April 15, 2018

    Delicious Steamed Sweet Potatoes With Barbecue Sauce

    I just made these steamed sweet potatoes and then drizzled them in sunflower oil AFTER COOKING (nb!). Also I topped it with the Classic-Mild Table Sauce from Heirloom Market barbecue in Marietta, GA. Not necessarily the healthiest, homemade, DIY sauce, but it was what I had available on-hand. I also sprinkled Himalayan pink salt on top. They were so delicious that I didn't snap a photo of them until they were almost gone!

    Monday, July 25, 2016

    Gamma Calibration/Correction In Windows 10

    There's a gamma calibration tool built in to Windows 10 (it may also exist in Windows 8 and 7 as well, possibly).

    Search for "calibrate display color" and it will show up. Or choose settings, system, display, advanced display settings, display adapter properties, color management, advanced, calibrate display.

    For other tools and further information, check out this page.

    Tuesday, July 12, 2016

    Pokemon Go APK 0.29 Download Link

    Here it the Android APK package, in case the download is blocked by license in your country by the Google Play Store:


    The md5sum is below:

    C:\Users\setup\Downloads>md5sum --version
    md5sum (PCP patchlevel 2) (GNU textutils) 1.22

    C:\Users\setup\Downloads>md5sum --binary com.nianticlabs.pokemongo-2580d2687af1ffaaec16ff3b48380f76.apk
    2580d2687af1ffaaec16ff3b48380f76 *com.nianticlabs.pokemongo-2580d2687af1ffaaec16ff3b48380f76.apk

    If you're curious, this file came from Titanium Backup, which exports the filenames above with the MD5 hash in the filename.

    Monday, December 21, 2015

    Why don't fair coin tosses “add up”? Or… is “gambler's fallacy” really valid?

    I am posting this answer here because I just joined the Philosophy website on StackExchange even though I have posting and comment privileges on other StackExchange sites. The question is quoted below:

    I have always been perplexed by a seeming paradox in probability that I'm sure has some simple, well-known explanation. We say that a "fair coin" or whatever has "no memory."
    At each toss the odds are once again reset at 50:50. Hence the "gambler's fallacy." After 10 heads, the odds of another head are still said to be 50:50. The same after 20, 40, 80... heads.
    Yet we also know that the series will converge upon an equilibrium of heads:tails. And indeed this is countable in fairly short order. The convergence appears pretty quickly.
    How can both be true? Isn't there something in the physical series of tosses that "remembers"? Isn't there necessarily some slightly better chance of a tails after 10 heads?
    How does logic resolve this absolute randomness in the particular events with a general law of convergence? I imagine this must be a well-known issue. I suppose it raises the larger issue of what sort of "causality" probability is.
    Note that I do not know symbolic logic so, embarrassingly, formal demonstrations are beyond my ken.

    There's a very simple answer that Marilyn Vos Savant wrote in her Parade Magazine column years ago. The answer is that each individual toss of a coin has a 50/50 probability, but these odds do not apply in aggregate!

    Who'd 'ave Thunk it?

    Thursday, December 17, 2015

    Is There A Way To Keep Very Noisy Mailing Lists Out Of Your Gmail Inbox And Still Participate In Them?

    I am trying to keep a noisy mailing list out of my Gmail inbox (and I don't want to switch to just yet). It's not a noisy list per-se; there's a lot of signal (good information) but I'd prefer to keep it out of my inbox, except for the few posts that I participate in. I don't see a way to do this, which has convinced me to use Google's Inbox app.

    Google Inbox combines many similar emails into bundles, either from a mailing list but also by the type of message, for example, groupon deals) into a single item in your inbox. It's basically a way of creating email filter rules but at the same time, alert you when there's a new message (new mailing list post, new groupon) without crowding your Inbox with each new message.

    By the way, does anyone else have a huge Gmail inbox? Mine has 300,000 unread messages, going all the way back to 2005 when I first created it. Thank you to the poster from who sent me that precious invited, back when Gmail was invitation only! It just got out of control and unmanageable. I do skim over all of the subject lines and read emails directly but I don't open reach one. Server Port Scans, DiG DNS Lookups, Nmap Scan

    I did these scans on March 23, 2015. I've had this saved in my blogger drafts for awhile, but I thought I would go ahead and release it. Note that there's no RDP port open, as was reported. It was probably closed soon after reached the news. All ports were closed, apparently.

    C:\Documents and Settings\newadmin>dig any
    ; <<>> DiG 9.9.5 <<>> any
    ;; global options: +cmd
    ;; Got answer:
    ;; ->>HEADER<<- 61432="" id:="" noerror="" opcode:="" p="" query="" status:="">;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 6, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 1
    ; EDNS: version: 0, flags:; udp: 512
    ;              IN      ANY
    ;; ANSWER SECTION:       7199    IN      NS       7199    IN      NS       7199    IN      MX      10       7199    IN      SOA 114021113 10800 3600 604800 3600       7199    IN      MX      10       7199    IN      A
    ;; Query time: 78 msec
    ;; SERVER:
    ;; WHEN: Mon Mar 23 12:31:50 Eastern Daylight Time 2015
    ;; MSG SIZE  rcvd: 260
    C:\Documents and Settings\newadmin>nslookup -type=mx
    Non-authoritative answer:        MX preference = 10, mail exchanger =        MX preference = 10, mail exchanger =
    C:\Documents and Settings\newadmin>nmap -sT
    t -vv -p 443,110,25,2525,465,587,993,995
    Starting Nmap 6.01 ( ) at 2015-03-23 12:38 Eastern Daylight Time
    Warning: Hostname resolves to 2 IPs. Using
    Warning: Hostname resolves to 4 IPs. Using
    Initiating Ping Scan at 12:38
    Scanning 2 hosts [4 ports/host]
    Completed Ping Scan at 12:38, 0.27s elapsed (2 total hosts)
    Initiating Parallel DNS resolution of 2 hosts. at 12:38
    Completed Parallel DNS resolution of 2 hosts. at 12:39, 11.09s elapsed
    Initiating Connect Scan at 12:39
    Scanning 2 hosts [8 ports/host]
    Completed Connect Scan at 12:39, 3.00s elapsed (16 total ports)
    Nmap scan report for (
    Host is up (0.047s latency).
    Other addresses for (not scanned):
    rDNS record for
    Scanned at 2015-03-23 12:38:54 Eastern Daylight Time for 15s
    25/tcp   filtered smtp
    110/tcp  filtered pop3
    443/tcp  filtered https
    465/tcp  filtered smtps
    587/tcp  filtered submission
    993/tcp  filtered imaps
    995/tcp  filtered pop3s
    2525/tcp filtered ms-v-worlds
    Nmap scan report for (
    Host is up (0.047s latency).
    Other addresses for (not scanned):
    rDNS record for
    Scanned at 2015-03-23 12:38:54 Eastern Daylight Time for 14s
    25/tcp   filtered smtp
    110/tcp  filtered pop3
    443/tcp  filtered https
    465/tcp  filtered smtps
    587/tcp  filtered submission
    993/tcp  filtered imaps
    995/tcp  filtered pop3s
    2525/tcp filtered ms-v-worlds
    Read data files from: C:\Program Files\Nmap
    Nmap done: 2 IP addresses (2 hosts up) scanned in 14.80 seconds
               Raw packets sent: 8 (304B) | Rcvd: 2 (72B)

    How To Tell Which Version Your Windows 10 DVD/ISO Is

    There are a few different ways that I've found in my time testing, remotely deploying (and uninstalling accidental installs, gulp!) in my time at Atlanta I.T. Service in Lawrenceville, Georgia (which is a great company to work for, by the way) to be able to determine which release your build of the Windows 10 DVD or the ISO 9660/UDF image is. Since we only have two major RTM and post-RTM builds, one of the below methods should work and make things simple.

    Open the ISO9660/UDF file in 7Zip. Extract the file located at sources/Setup.exe and run Grep/Strings on it: This seems to show the most accurate release number, including an internal build number. I have yet to install this ISO, so I am not sure if the 151029 number is indicative of it being a 10.0.10586.29 build number. The command below uses Sysinternals' strings program, in case you work in a high security environment that only allows signed/whitelisted executables:
    > strings setup.exe | findstr -i 10\.
    10.0.10586.0 (th2_release.151029-1700)

    DLL Method: Once you've extracted the files from your Windows 10 ISO file, find at any DLL file in the Sources folder. Right-click it and choose Properties. Then click the Details tab. Under Product Version or File Version, it will show the build number:

    Sources/Ws.dat: This file is in the sources folder. This file is in the .inf format. Open it in Notepad and it will show the build in the ClientVersion field. Note that in the 10240 build this file was empty, but going forward it might be used in the future.

    Sources/Idwbinfo.txt: This file is in the sources folder. Open it in notepad and it will show the major release. th1_release is for 10240 and th2_release is 10586. The TH(N) naming scheme refers to Threshold, eg. TH2 is Threshold 2:
    Sources/schema.dat: This file is in the sources folder. It's a binary file, but you can still open it in notepad. Search it for the string version and you'll see the full build number

    Sources/sxs/ This file is in the sources/sxs folder. Open the file with 7-zip, and the file names will show the Windows build number:


    Here's my copy of the Media Creation Tool, version 10586, which as of December 17, 2015, will still download a build 10586 ISO. If you have the original July 10240 Media Creation Tool, it will download the RTM build 10240 ISO.

    Thursday, November 12, 2015

    How To Fix Botched MS Update MS15-115 KB-3097877; Affects More Than Outlook

    Microsoft released a botched update that was supposed to fix opentype vulnerabilities but has caused logon issues, blank screens, etc.... The first reported problem with this hotfix was that Outlook would crash when opening HTML email.

    They have since fixed the issue with this patch and have re-released it, as Infoworld reports.
     Microsoft has since replaced the troublesome security patch with a new one by the same KB number, at least for Windows 7
    Fix #1: Use Remote Desktop/MSTSC and RDP into the machine and remove the update with this command:

    wusa /uninstall /quiet /norestart /kb:3097877

    You will still need to go into Windows Update, click Check for updates, and right click on update 3097877, then right-click it and choose Hide this update. You will not need to hide this update anymore, as this patch has been rereleased today.

    Fix #2: As reported by Ryan Seabury on Infoworld's coverage, disconnect all secondary and tertiary (extra monitors) video monitors and reboot, then you should be able to login again. Then you can remove the update, and the working update that was re-released today (Thursday, November 12) will download again through Windows Update. Be sure to upgrade video driver to latest, as this update may corrupt display drivers.


    Also in some unrelated news, but still interesting, you can now test you Android for all 22 security vulnerabilities with VTS for Android by NowSecure OSS . My LG Leon LTE is vulnerable to stagefright.

    Saturday, August 29, 2015

    Windows 10 Upgrade Install Failing With A PRE_OS Error (Something Happened)

    I have seen other guides that say to fix a failed Windows 10 install by doing a clean boot among other things:

    • disabling items in MSCONFIG
    • run setup.exe as administrator
    • ensure that a bunch of services are set to automatic and start them
    • disabled all antivirus
    • boot into safe mode and run delete both folders that start with $Windows at the root of the C: Drive
    • change your locale settings.
    • remove all previous files, settings, and applications
    • Create a registry key called AllowOSUpgrade to 1
    I tried all of these at the same time, and none of them worked. The upgrade to Windows 10 kept failing and it would not give any reason why other than an inexplicable error message. I did two things after this: I installed Windows 7 Service Pack 1, which was not installed before. Still no dice. So I imaged the drive to another drive, and lo and behold, Acronis True Image found some unreadable sectors. I set it to ignore read errors while cloning, then booted up into 7 and Windows 10 installed just fine!

    People are also saying to do a clean install of 7 or 8 first, or run chkdsk, which could be the reason that the upgrade then proceeds, if the hard drive errors are correctable!

    Hey Apple, will you be giving away OS X version 11 away for free? (Or OS XI or OS 11 or OS 10.11?)

    Wednesday, August 19, 2015

    How To Permanently Disable Windows 10 Home Edition Updates

    This will also work on Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise, but on those editions you can disable the Windows Update service by running services.msc, finding the Windows Update service, stop it, and set startup to Disabled.

    Please note that this may also block Windows 10 from phoning home to Microsoft, and is also likely to disable most Microsoft Cloud products (OneDrive, etc...)

    Disable Windows 10 Updates:

    Click on Start and Run, or type the "Windows Key" and "R", then type this command:

    notepad %windir%\system32\drivers\etc\hosts

    or this one:

    notepad c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts

    Add these lines below to the hosts file and click save. If it asks you for a location to save, then launch notepad as an administrative user first and then open the hosts file and make the edits above/below. You'll have to type this filename directly into the File Open box, since normally only .txt files are shown:


    Then paste the list below into the hosts file above and save the file.     # Important! fix for network status and diagnostic tools

    This list came from DSLReports. If anyone has any updates on this issue, such as a more complete list, or a better way to disable updates, please post a comment below.

    Monday, February 16, 2015

    Server Backup 2012 Error 0x80780119 (not enough disk space to create a Shadow Copy)

    Here's a working fix for this issue,

    1. Open Computer.
    2. Right click the C drive (the active drive that contains the Windows system folder)
    3. Click the Shadow Copies tab
    4. Select the EFI volume and click settings
    5. Change the Maximum Size to be two or three times the size that is listed.
    6. If the Maximum Size is unlimited, try setting it to different values.
    7. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for the Recovery Partition.
    If you are still having trouble, then change the Shadow Copies storage area from itself to the C drive or another partition (preferably on the same disk or array), for both the Recovery and the EFI boot partition. This should also work for Windows 8.
    Another possible but untested solution is to use AOMEI Partition Assistant to resize the Recovery Partition and the EFI partition to be two to three times larger.

    Here's some background links:
    1. Disable WinRE (Open elevated command prompt and Run: “reagentc /disable”)
    2. Take system image backup
    3. Enable WinRE (Open elevated command prompt and Run: “reagentc /enable”)
    You can write a batch file to run these commands via the scheduler for automation,

    The "USN journal" fix does not work on 2012, since Windows Server 2012 does not allow you to assign the EFI or Recovery partitions a drive letter. But also I have not tinkered with diskpart to see if it's possible via the command-line.

    Apparently there is an errant Windows Update that just recently came out, since many people are having this issue but there's no official hotfix.