METRIC MIKEY’S WEDNESDAY WORD

Or is it two- I’ll just hyphenate it. User-agent. I had completely forgotten that that was how we thought of browsers back in the day (a la web-server log file analysis).

It wasn’t until I read (below) in the article I referenced in yesterday’s post, that I got thinking about just how pushy and presumptuous browsers had gotten:

‘Google’s Chrome browser “needs to return to its purpose as a user-agent giving the consumer simple and easy control over tracking by parties she hasn’t chosen to interact [with], and a strong prohibition in the case of tracking by Google where she has no practical alternatives due to Google’s monopoly power.” ‘

I decided to look up User-agent on Wikipedia:
“In computing, a user agent is any software, acting on behalf of a user, which “retrieves, renders and facilitates end-user interaction with Web content.”

Remember the good old days, when that was all a browser did, just serve up web pages. In my mind, I liken the evolution (or devolution) of the web browser from – say the early to mid nineties to 2017, to a waiter at a restaurant you’ve been frequenting for over a decade, who, now he feels he knows you.and picks things off your plate that HE thinks are not good for you or sneaks you free drinks or dessert to get a little extra money. Creepy – check. Sometimes good – check. Often bad, maybe illegal…..

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