Breaking Down Tech - Getting Rid of the Gravy Train

To many of the readers here, we are all looking for ways to signal to Big Tech to back off of our rights and stay out of our private affairs. However it is time we stop paying these tech firms our hard earned money. In particular, we need to stop paying for subscription software. And there are some easy targets we can replace.

One such easy target: Office 365. Whether for home or the office; we all use documents and spreadsheets. One of the better competitors is LibreOffice: https://www.libreoffice.org/. LibreOffice can open several Microsoft formats (i.e. .doc and .docx). It is free, open-source, and utilized by a few European governments (so it is not going away anytime soon). The installers can be used by Windows, Mac, and Linux.

While you are at it, save your documents using Apache OpenOffice formats (i.e. .odt). That way you can open your file with almost any editor (even Office 365 itself). No more lock-in to Microsoft. Hope this helps you get yours against Big Tech.

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great stuff! Thank you

In my opinion, LibreOffice is also better than Office, if only because it adequate without being excessively complicated and demanding. Often now computer software and technology seems to try to tell us what to do, instead of us being able to tell it what to do. I like LO for that as well.

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Well said Jose! I couldn’t agree more. At some point I would like to start migrating over to Linux. Especially since I have been getting back into cryptocurrency. Speaking of which, there is an entire industry opportunity for our like minds to be involved in. A few years ago I got into it with recognizing its potential and got burned out not seeing it happen. Now I am starting to see that potential. It’s the Wild West right now which may scare some people off but also presents the greatest opportunity.

I got rid of my Facebook messenger after realizing how evil it is. These people have some serious early dictator mentalities that are dangerous. I kept my account and just use a browser to keep up with friends

I also feel like legality wise there needs to be some offensive positions. A lot of people think this Rittenhouse case was a victory. To me there should have never been charges. The only justice would be a bunch of government bullies in jail for their crimes if obstructing. I support the ACLJ and other conservative groups.

Finally, perhaps there are more ways of integrating financial support in our purchasing power. I use patriot mobile for my phone service. For a lower cost companies like Patriot mobile and others give money to conservative causes. If I can get my company going I would be very much obligated to pay it forward.

Good subject……

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One last comment, I do think there is an existing danger to be aware of. I am seeing some fruits being exposed. A lot of people recognize the significance of our contributions to society and for decades and have been more than willing to exploit it. They have used our great endeavors against us. Recently I recognized leadership at black rifle coffee company disparaging protesters on Jan sixth and then Rittenshouse. We must be aware of this if we are to be successful.

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Best of luck with your company. While it is the Wild West between Big Tech trying to crush everyone and all the other tech companies trying to take advantage of the chaos, some tech users are fed up enough to try something new. And the easier we make their on-ramping to any alternative tech, the less data and money are sitting in Big Tech’s vaults. Right now I think you have a very large group of alienated customers who are ripe for a new company if you try launching your company again.

The biggest threat to individual users is Big Tech forcing users into their walled-garden systems with a single identity (i.e. Microsoft forcing Windows users to use a Microsoft account to log into their own PC) and then cutting of these users’ accounts if an AI algorithm sees content it does not like. Whether we mention Project Veritas, Rittenhouse, or other leftist taboo subjects; we get cut off from our own data on our own PC hardware. My hope is that enough incidents of the AI locking out customers will drive people to Linux and non-Big Tech services.

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The company I am hoping to start is in aerospace. Ultra low cost space access. Space access affordable enough for the middle class and small business to be involved. I have no previously attempted to launch it. Rather, it’s been a long slow approach building up strategically figuring out what it will take. There is no competition to my designs. Trillion dollar economies could be created. Personally, I see parallel economies and crypto decentralized applications the solution to majority of the silencing and propaganda we are seeing.

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If you can’t avoid using YouTube, you can use this extension to block advertisements. This will give less money to YouTube’s parent company Google, whose official motto is “Be Evil”.

Search for “Enhancer for YouTube”
for firefox: Enhancer for YouTube™ – Get this Extension for 🦊 Firefox (en-US)
for Chrome: Enhancer for YouTube™ - Chrome Web Store

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Also, of course, don’t search with Google. Use DuckDuckGo.com.

These days it actually works better than Google b/c it doesn’t fill the top half of your results page with ads and Google’s “offically approved” result.

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A better alternative I’ve been using is Brave. In my opinion, it’s a much better option than the google chrome browser. All ads are blocked, it performs better, and you’re actually paid to use it. The founder/CEO is outspoken again wokeness and ridiculous covid policies as well

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I see this in two ways, both of which are increasingly important and hopefully will become more mainstream as big tech becomes more exposed.

1 - Get off the offerings of big tech (Microsoft, Google etc). They are not the only fish in the sea, but ordinary people do not realize that.

2 - Privacy. Even among the viable alternatives to big tech, there are privacy problems. If people truly understood how bad the privacy problems were, they’d be outraged.

Privacy Tools (https://www.privacytools.io/) maintains a great list of privacy focused options. An increasing number are user-friendly which is great to see.

Personally my two “go-to’s” are NextCloud and CryptPad. NextCloud is also easy to self-host.

Then I run a Pi-Hole on a Raspberry Pi at home, it’s been blocking 30% of our traffic (ads). It’s a setup and forget, until you need to run updates (easy).

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To those who need maximum compatibility with MS Office, there is another alternative called ONLYOFFICE which boasts better compatibility. Your mileage may vary, as it does not support macros, but this is another tool for the toolbelt.

I’ve spent the last two years focusing on eliminating big tech as much as possible so I’m happy to help in any way I can with alternatives.

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I second Nextcloud. It is the self hosting “killer app”. I think there is a huge business to be had in migrating a corporate suite to Nextcloud.

I second also @collier’s recommendation of Brave.

Regarding DuckDuckGo, it is fine, but I also would suggest Presearch, Searx, and search.brave.com.

MPV can handle youtube links natively. Youtube-dl (or the more stable yt-dlp) can download YouTube videos for offline. On Android, Newpipe offers this functionality.

Bitwarden for password management.

Signal to replace Whatsapp, Element to replace Discord. Protonmail to replace Gmail.

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For escaping BE EVIL Tech, what is the current browser recommendation?

I’ve been using Brave as my browser. You can shut off cookies, tracking or turn them on and get small compensation.

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The main thing is get off of Chrome. With the industry moving away from cookies for privacy reasons, Google is moving their tracking tech (required to support their massive ad business) directly into the browser. Chrome is basically spyware.

Firefox is a great browser and respects your privacy (with the proper settings). Although Mozilla is a ‘woke’ company, I’ll willing to give them a pass in order to support alternatives to Chrome.

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Tim and Tony are spot on. The primary threat is Chrome which is loaded with spyware from Google. And the Chrome browser does enforce Google’s edicts. Prime example is Chrome tries to prevent users from grabbing Youtube videos. Additionally, the Opera browser was bought out by a Chinese firm so beware that one.

Good browsers come in two flavors: Chromium (which is an open source project that Google builds Chrome on top of) and Firefox clones. Some of the smaller projects need to have updates manually searched for and updated rather than having an automatic update feature.

Under Chromium:

Under Firefox Clones:

Experimental Peer-to-Peer Web Browser: https://beakerbrowser.com/

Others:

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From what I have studied the tor browser is the best privacy browser. I’ve heard it can have some issues with Java script. Not a programmer, not sure.

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Brave is Chromium based, supports Chrome imports, and all Chrome extensions. The user experience of Brave is identical to Chrome, but it has the added benefit of the built in “Shields” which block ads and trackers by default. You can couple this with uBlock origin to increase the blocking of tracking. For someone currently using Chrome there is simply no downside to switching to Brave.

Nerds will have knockdown dragout fights about Brave vs. Firefox, but most of the Firefox fanboys are straining at gnats, lying about Brave, and have additional hardening they have applied, and are not using Vanilla Firefox.

For people who do not want to dedicate their whole life to browser hardening, just use Brave. As an added benefit, the founder of Brave is based, he was kicked out of Mozilla for opposing gay marriage, and he was one of the Mozilla founders.

Just use Brave.

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Note also that Brave is better than Chrome when it comes to features:

  • Native support for Tor
  • Native support for web torrents
  • Optional built in Crypto wallets
  • Optional paid to view ads in Crypto
  • Sync that requires no personally identifying information.
  • Fully Open Source.
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