Shake Shack Finally Opens At Westfield Valley Fair Mall

Shake Shack opened to a long lines at the Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto, CA, on December 15, 2018. A new Shake Shack store was to open at Westfield Valley Fair Mall in Santa Clara, CA, during Spring 2020. The coronavirus pandemic shut down the malls for six months. The San Jose Mercury News announced that Shake Shack would open at Valley Fair Mall this past week. I did a walkthrough on Sunday, 9/27/2020, looking at the new store inside and the promenade outside. The strawberry milkshake was great!

Interactive Maker Workshop Bundle – SiliCon With Adam Savage

SiliCon With Adam Savage announced the Interactive Maker Workshop for Saturday, 10/17/2020, at 1:00PM Pacific Time. The 90-minute live workshop will have Savage building a fantasy cardboard helmet in his workshop. Registration limited to 200 people, and cost $60 to $65 USD plus service fees, shipping and handling, and tax. Includes a Maker Workshop Bundle valued at $200 USD. Sponsored by Amazon and Monster Energy Drinks. What exactly do you get in the Maker Workshop Bundle?

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No More Anonymous Comments on Slashdot

Photo by Jaroslav Devia on Unsplash

A viewer posted this comment on my YouTube channel in August 2019:

“I don’t know who you are, but why is there an insane amount of photoshopped gay porn on several image sharing sites with your face, name, and contact info?”

I considered carefully whether to answer or delete the comment. The viewer may or may not have been trolling me.

The subject matter, however, was a good enough reason to delete the comment. Neither “gay” nor “porn” are advertiser friendly words (not that my channel qualifies for ad revenues — not then, not now). Content creators are responsible for managing the comment sections of their videos. If the comment section becomes a dumpster fire, YouTube may disable comments for the video and/or take action against the channel.

I gave the viewer the benefit of the doubt by responding with this comment.

“My dedicated band of trolls thought it was funny to paste my publicly available image and contact info on to gay and child porn images.”

I left out the reference to Slashdot, a tech news commentary website founded in 1997 and the Reddit of its day prior to the Dot Com Bust in 2001. I’ve read and commented on the website for over 20 years. The new owners since 2016 made long needed changes to modernized the website. (The previous owners milked the website for its advertising revenues.) I’ve stopped associating Slashdot with my trolls over two years ago. The new owners didn’t need the negativity and my trolls deserved the quiet obscurity.

The viewer responded with a rambling comment that had every talking point that my trolls used to justify their abuse towards me on Slashdot. I suspected that this particular viewer may quite possibly be the same troll responsible for pasting my contact info and posting the aforementioned porn on Russian image sharing websites in 2017.

That stunt took me six weeks and 200+ DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998) takedown notices to clean up 95% of that mess. That I was able to do anything about it infuriated the troll. Russia was beyond my reach, as I didn’t know the Russian language, and American copyright law didn’t apply to Russia. Thanks to modern technology, several things worked out in my favor.

  • Google Chrome does an excellent job in translating web pages from Russian to English (right-click on a Russian web page, select “Translate to English” from the context menu, and Russian transforms into English).
  • Most of the Russian image sharing websites had a drop-down option on their contact form or a special email address for takedown notices.
  • Because the troll kept posting new links to the same half-dozen websites in anonymous comments on Slashdot, it took me five minutes to send out takedown notices when it took the troll 45 minutes to post new images.

I replied to the viewer with a shorter comment that asserted a few facts to see where the next comment would go. And, not surprisingly, I got another rambling comment with more of the same talking points. I deleted the entire thread — and vented on Twitter.

“Dear Slashdot trolls: Do not come on to my YouTube channel to rehash in comments everything that happened in recent years. Want me to disappear from Slashdot? Stop accusing users of being me and stop assuming every AC is me. If you need someone to troll, go after APK. Thx!”

Someone tweeted back that Slashdot “disabled AC posting”. I stared at that tweet in amazement and wonder. If it wasn’t a technical glitch, it was a radical and almost unthinkable change for Slashdot.

Read the rest of the essay on Medium

The Adam Savage Sexual Abuse Lawsuit

Picture by Adam Savage on Facebook

When I posted a video on YouTube about an announcement from SiliCon With Adam Savage, the sexual abuse lawsuit filed by Savage’s younger sister, Miranda Pacchiana, as reported by People Magazine on June 30, 2020, was the centerpiece.

If I had known about the lawsuit prior to making a video in early July that SiliCon With Adam Savage would no longer be a physical event due to the coronavirus pandemic, I would have mentioned it then.

The lawsuit flew underneath my radar because the news media covered Savage as the former TV host of MythBusters. ATV show that I’ve heard about but never watched an episode. It didn’t any ring any bells for me.

My familiarity with Savage comes from his involvement as a panel moderator for Silicon Valley Comic Con (SVCC), hosted by Stan Lee and Steve Wozniak. After Lee died in November 2018, Wozniak hosted the last show in August 2019. Six months later, Savage announced that SVCC would become SiliCon With Adam Savage.

I came across the lawsuit through an indirect reference from an internet search that Savage had a sister. If Pacchiana was anything like her brother, I thought, she must be an extraordinary woman. But instead of being a maker of things, she’s a child sexual abuse survivor and advocate.

The lawsuit accused of Savage of sexually abusing Pacchiana from 1976 to 1979 in Sleepy Hollow, New York. He was 9 to 12 years old; she was 7 to 10 years old. I’m not going to repeat what allegedly happened between them. Read the People Magazine article for the lurid details.

Savage was quite vocal about denying the allegations and accusing his sister of pursuing “a financial bonanza” through the courts.

The latter point was especially true since the New York Child Victims Act waives the statute of limitations for any child abuse victims to file a lawsuit for monetary damages under a special one-year extension (recently extended to January 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic).

I’ve gotten some interesting push back for mentioning the lawsuit in my video.

Read the rest of the essay on Medium.

Westfield Valley Fair Mall Reopens Indoor Stores

On Monday, August 31, 2020, the State of California updated its coronavirus guidelines to reopen indoor retail stores at 25% capacity. I did a walk-around at Westfield Valley Fair Mall in Silicon Valley on Friday, 9/4/2020. The mall wasn’t restricting the number of people coming inside. Each store was responsible for restricting the number of people coming into their place of business. Popular stores like the Apple Store had long lines to get in. Most stores closed. Some stores like the Microsoft Store were permanently closed. Due to restrictions imposed by Santa Clara County, indoor theaters and restaurants are still closed. This is the first video in this playlist.

Updated 9/7/2020: Check out the list of reopened stores here.

What The Sexual Abuse Lawsuit Mean For Silicon With Adam Savage

Silicon With Adam Savage announced tickets for an exclusive one-on-one video chat with Adam Savage in early September. Available in two-minute sessions for $100 USD each, up to a maximum of five sessions (ten minutes) for $500 USD. After the first three tickets sold out in 48 hours, the organizers added another 20 tickets to meet the demand. But I came across something even more disturbing than questionable ticket prices while researching today’s topic.

According to People Magazine on June 30, 2020, Savage’s younger sister, Miranda Pacchiana, filed a civil lawsuit that he sexually abused her when they were young children. Savage denied the allegations and accused his sister of pursuing “a financial bonanza”.A lawsuit like this in the era of hashtag me too is usually the kiss of death for the male personality and anything he’s associated with.

What does this sexual abuse lawsuit mean for Silicon Valley With Adam Savage?

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