Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Midwest Teen Sex Show

A report done by Nightline...

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Bush's Dept of Justice Banned from Wikipedia Edits

Wikipedia has temporarily blocked edits from the US Department of Justice after someone inside the government agency tried to erase references to a particularly-controversial Wiki-scandal.

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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Start-up hopes to outdo eBay

eBay rival...for items below $25, there is no transaction fee...

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Can I tap that?

Talk about growlers (only beer fans will understand that reference):




"These models are making me thirsty!..."
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a strap-on for the Wii

Super Pii Pii Brothers has a waist harness for the Wii remote...

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XP SP3 vs. Vista SP1 - Which is fastest?

A ZDNET Blog

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Monday, April 28, 2008

Ebay University


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Does Good IT Talent Evaporate?

...The most talented and effective engineers are the ones most likely to leave..."What tends to remain behind is the 'residue' -- the least talented and effective...They tend to be grateful they have a job...they are the least likely to be able to find a job elsewhere...

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BEST RADIO STATION: Indie 103

"The 125+ People, Places and Things Ruling the Rock Universe"...Rolling Stone's picks...from Best Festival Band (Radiohead) to Best Producer (Danger Mouse) to Best MC (Lil Wayne), plus books, venues, Beatles remasters and more...

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Zoho's pivot and macro capabilities: tipping point?

From a ZDNET Blog...

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Sunday, April 27, 2008

File Sharing Site Offers 250GB Storage Free

I recommend you read the comments on Digg...I created an account, though.

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Saturday, April 26, 2008

CompTIA A+ Certification All-In-One Desk Reference For Dummies

A cursory review of the 2006 edition...I borrowed it from a library...the CD was missing.

--------------------------------------------

page 19/chapter 2
"A+ Soft Skills" covers customer relations skills
There should have been mention of having discussions of specific expected resolutions should be held BEFORE they are assumed...it will set the tone for troubleshooting.

-------------------------------------------

Page 21 gets into preliminary troubleshooting strategies:
identify the problem...
identify changes that were made to the computer before the problem arose...
and break big problems into smaller pieces.

Resolution considerations:
what is the ultimate goal?...
what is the/an immediate goal?...
are there any time limits?

Prioritize: set a goal, and the time limits to reach it.

--------------------------------------------

page 22

Considerations of analyzing the problem and its potential causes; discussion of the basic troubleshooting process.

-----------------------------------------------------

page 23

Backup settings and files
(HAVE YOU PLANNED FOR A TOTAL SYSTEM FAILURE? It happens...)

Test one configuration change at a time
(There is no "silver bullet"...either you want to troubleshoot, or you don't. Is there a time limit?...)

How to research for potential fixes

Prioritize potential fixes

Document the issue
(THIS should have been discussed before "soft skills". Any agreement should be documented. I say this from professional experience...)

----------------------------------------------------

chapter 2/page 474
The Art of Troubleshooting
(There is a science to it, but some aspects do pertain to one's personal individualistic approach to a particular issue.)

-------------------------------------------------------

Book V
Operating System Basics

page 497
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Nice Office

[A (cursory) review...]

For evaluation, I was loaned a BlackBerry to use with the service.

I consider it contact management "on steroids".

It works with webmail, Exchange, and Outlook...and can be "Push Email" capable.

It's online website syncs the Address book, Calendar, and Tasks with compatible PDAs...

You can upload documents into your Nice Office web account, and fax and e-mail them from your BlackBerry.

The service is designed with sales activities in mind...but, because of its tools, I feel it could be adaptable to other industries and businesses.

============================

On the Blackberry

--------------------------------------------

The View Sales screen shows individual sales records and details about the transaction. You can review the client’s sales history in detail.

View Customized Fields (Sales) – These fields can be entered and edited from the Smartphone as well as on the website.

The View Journals screen displays opportunity and sales specific notes...

------------------------------------------------------------

Reports section

Some of the available reports include:
Contacts Report,
Leads by Date/Zip Reports,
Pending Commissions Report,
Sales Total Report,
plus eleven more.

Calendar Report lists all of your past and scheduled activities...the report can be filtered by a start and end date range.

The Agent Forecast Sales Report can be filtered by a start and end date range. You can determine your potential income from this report.

The Tasks Report can be a “to do” list.

In The Client Report section, both insurance oriented, have:
The Client Sales Report and...
The Commissions Paid Report (which lists all of your earnings year to date).

The Downline Hierarchy Report lists your downline sales employees...a “drill down” from the manager’s level to downline employees through their subordinates.

The Leads by Date Report:
has a Leads by Zip(code) Report, and...
allows you to call leads directly from the report by clicking the contact’s number.

The Pending Commissions Report is insurance oriented.

The Product Report lists all of the products you represent for different vendors.
The Product Sales Report displays sales by product code and date.
And The Sales Total Report lists all closed sales transactions within the date range you specify (a good way to produce a hardcopy of your business transactions).

-----------------------------------------------

In Contacts:
you can make Journal entries...
set appointments from this screen...
and use Mapping to visually locate your customer, or plot a trip.

============================

You can erase data on device remotely. Useful if you terminate an employee, transfer a postition to a new hire, or lose the Blackberry.

=============================

Nice Office Wireless Supported Devices:
Windows Mobile 5.0 Pocket PC
BlackBerry

For information about service providers and carriers, contact Nice Office.

Customer Support Hot Line at (888) 377-8200

Nice Office is available for as low as $4.95 per month.

================================
================================

They also provide a service called Radar...
http://www.mymobilewatchdog.com/

RADAR instantly alerts parents by sending a message to the parents cell phone when unknown or high risk people try to call, email, text or instant message their children. Unusual activities are also logged to the parents' RADAR web account, allowing them to view, assess and take action on questionable contacts. A user-friendly home page provides quick access to the online management tools and resources parents need to safely manage, monitor and report to law enforcement any inappropriate contact with their children.

You can monitor, and manage, contacts (edit, delete, and add).

The Radar service can work with authorities by providing a "chain of evidence"...after 14 days, some phone companies have destroyed the history of the account of the phone.

Radar services are free to law enforcement (contact them for more information).

Alert services available for schools, agencies, communities, and more.

If you are coming out of your contract, call them for information on possible deals on phones and service.
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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Texting Your Way to Love

A Hilarious cartoon skewering the SMS and hookup culture: cell phones find love through text messages.

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Event Log/Viewer

I haven't used this tool as much as I should have. Hopefully this information will benefit you much more than it has me...

=============================

In Windows XP...The Event Log Service records application, security, and system events in Event Viewer...Event logs can help you identify and diagnose the source of current system problems, or help you predict potential system problems.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308427

-------------------------------------------

Dr. Watson, the system failure or "crash" analysis tool, has been replaced with Problem Reports and Solutions.

When some hardware or software problems occur on your computer—for example, if a program stops working or stops responding— Windows creates a problem report so you can check for a solution...

To check for solutions to problems using Control Panel
1. click the Start button , click Control Panel, click System and Maintenance, and then click Problem Reports and Solutions.

2. Click Check for new solutions.

Windows will notify you if there are any steps you can take to solve problems on your computer.

http://windowshelp.microsoft.com/Windows/en-US/Help/743033cd-a522-4e37-8312-7d606c2737eb1033.mspx

---------------------------------------------------------

Event Viewer tracks information in several different logs. Windows Logs include:

• Application (program) events. Events are classified as error, warning, or information, depending on the severity of the event. An error is a significant problem, such as loss of data. A warning is an event that is not necessarily significant, but might indicate a possible future problem. An information event describes the successful operation of a program, driver, or service.

• Security-related events. These events are called audits and are described as successful or failed, depending on the event, such as whether a user trying to log on to Windows was successful.

• Setup events. Computers that are configured as domain controllers will have additional logs displayed here.

• System events. System events are logged by Windows and Windows system services, and are classified as error, warning, or information.

1. Open Event Viewer by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Maintenance, clicking Administrative Tools, and then double-clicking Event Viewer.? If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

2. Click an event log in the left pane.

3. Double-click an event to view the details of the event.

http://windowshelp.microsoft.com/Windows/en-US/Help/1bcadb98-7479-4fad-82dd-7f30a80dfa4f1033.mspx

----------------------------------------------------------

Event Viewer is an advanced tool that displays detailed information about significant events on your computer. It can be helpful when troubleshooting problems and errors with Windows and other programs.

Open Event Viewer by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Maintenance, clicking Administrative Tools, and then double-clicking Event Viewer.

Here's another way to open Event Viewer: Click the Start button . In the Search box, type Event Viewer, and then, in the list of results, double-click Event Viewer.

http://windowshelp.microsoft.com/Windows/en-US/help/a99f69c1-935f-4116-ba5f-33d8800ef9da1033.mspx

--------------------------------------------------------

The Event Viewer

You can start Event Viewer by adding the snap-in to MMC, or by double-clicking the snap-in file, Eventvwr.msc, which is located in the %SYSTEMROOT%\system32 folder.

In addition, Event Viewer can be started from the Windows interface or the command line by using the following procedures.

To start Event Viewer by using the Windows interface
1. Click the Start button.
2. Click Control Panel.
3. Click System and Maintenance.
4. Click Administrative Tools.
5. Double-click Event Viewer.

To start Event Viewer by using a command line
1. Open a command prompt. To open a command prompt, click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories and then click Command Prompt.
2. Type eventvwr.

To display additional help for the eventvwr command-line tool, type the following command at a command prompt: eventvwr /?

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/WindowsVista/library/ops/a37fd11e-597a-4d44-9507-a88e937bda50.mspx?mfr=true
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Children: Sometimes You Can't Mend Them

(This article is focused on "adopted" children. If you broaden the scope to those who have been moved from one "home" to another against their will, it can apply. I know by experience as the child...)If a child's early life is dominated by fear she becomes unable to trust another person. If she can't attach she can't love, or be loved...

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Windows XP's auto mini-defrag

"...Windows XP will automatically reposition some files to improve performance, this will generally be done infrequently and will usually include only a small fraction of the files on the disk...

"Once every three days, by default, Windows XP will perform a partial defragmentation and adjust the layout of the disk based upon current use. The files to be moved are written in the file Layout.ini (found in the Prefetch directory under the System Root directory)."
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Improving Windows XP Performance Part I

...adjust your visual effects, memory usage, virtual memory, and processor scheduling...

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Grand Theft Childhood

A cursory book review:

Grand Theft Childhood
The Surprising Truth About Violent Video Games and What Parents Can Do
By Dr. Lawrence Kutner and Dr. Cheryl Olson

==============================

The first third of the book explains their approach to the study...

----------------------------------------------

On page 18 it is stated (in the third paragraph) that some of the most popular games...are not violent.

------------------------------------------------------------

page 65
"Designing a Video Game Violence Study..."
"Whom will we study?..."

page 86
"Whom did we study?..."
Two middle schools...one in Pennsylvania (664 students), and another in South Carolina (590 students)...seventh and eight graders, during Language Arts/Enlish classes.

--------------------------------------------

page 68
The three basic types of studies are explained...

----------------------------------------------

page 73
How the definition and measure of aggression is resolved...

page 88
"How did we define 'aggression'?..."

page 87
"How did we define 'violence' in video games?..."

page 88
"...What did we use as a measure of aggression?..."
"How did we measure exposure to video game violence?..."

-------------------------------------------

page 111
"Why Kids Play Violent Games"
(4 obvious reasons:
excitement and fun
sociability
emotions...to get anger out
boredom)

page 129
"Teaming Up: Violent Games and Friendships"

page 132
"Internet Play"

page 133
"Video Games and Learning Disabilities"
"...these kids tended to play games for more hours per week than others...more likely than other children to play games to feel less lonely, to get their anger out, and because they liked 'the guns and other weapons'...
"...more likely to be victims of bullying, and to report being left out or excluded by their peers...overall top reasons for playing games...to connect with friends and cope with feelings..."
"...children with attention deficit disorder...attracted to media, including: television, video games, and computers..." (I've never been diagnosed, but I fit this profile...)
I'm my opinion, this is a GREAT section to read.

----------------------------------------------

page 76
"Do the results matter?..."
"...academic research on video games effects is not geared to the needs of parents..."
(Has the effects of long-term exposure been considered?...)

page 89
"How meaningful are the results?..."
(Are they of practical significance?)

page 95
Do Violent Games Lead to Behavior Problems?

page 103
Are Aggressive Kids More Likely to Play Violent Games?

page 118
"Is There Such a Thing as Good Violence?"

page 139
"Sex, Hate, Game Addition, and Other Worries"
"Games with a Social or Political Agenda"
recruitment...promotion of suicide...etcetera

page 127
The Appeal of Grand Theft Auto

---------------------------------------------

page 89
What's Normal?
(Regarding time spent playing games...)

page 83
"Justified Violence"

page 88
How they justified the relationships of aggression and violence to the real world...

---------------------------------------------

page 209
Practical Advice for Parents
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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Smart Watches with MSN Direct no longer available

Support for the watches, and information delivery, will continue (for now)...I still have one...(when I could afford it) I loved it!

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Colossal MP3 Player Spotted at Walgreens!

about $22

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blogger fights back, and wins

A blogger had spoken out against lawyers trying to cash in on thimerosal lawsuits. She was subpoenaed for her family's bank records, tax returns, autism-related medical and educational records, and communications concerning all of the issues to which she has devoted her attention and energy in recent years...

The lawyer is representing a mother who is suing Bayer for $20M with the claim that mercury in their vaccines caused her child's autism.

The blogger has successfully quashed her subpoena; the lawyer issuing said subpoena is now under orders to appear and explain why the courts shouldn't sanction him for it.

http://neurodiversity.com/weblog/article/150/

http://neurodiversity.com/weblog/article/152/

http://neurodiversity.com/weblog/
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Appeals court upholds search of laptop at LAX

electronic storage devices are an extension of our memories and thoughts, and cannot be legally searched without reasonable suspicion...however: laptops are subject to search at a border checkpoint; a government agent has the right to search computers at the border...evidence found on a laptop could be admissible...

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"Duct Tape on the Moon"

Sounds like the title to a B-movie...
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Monday, April 21, 2008

Good Copy Bad Copy

A documentary about the current state of copyright and culture. it shows the way current copyright cultures restrict the flow of creativity, speakers include, Lawrence Lessig, GirlTalk, Danger Mouse. This documentary is a comments on how and what should change to develop copyright to allow creative freedoms but still protect the creators rights.

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Skype unlimited phone calls

Unlimited US & Canada, $2.95/month, Unlimited calls to landlines and cell phones in the US and Canada...unlimited international calling, $9.95 per month, covers 34 countries...

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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Microsoft quietly offering ad-funded Works

...an ad-funded version of Microsoft Works SE (which stands for Sponsored Edition) is free to PC makers...It is available only through select computer makers and Microsoft won't say which computer makers those are.If you know, tell me...

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Friday, April 18, 2008

RECORD STORE DAY

On Saturday, April 19, 2008, hundreds of independently owned music stores across the country will celebrate “Record Store Day.”

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A 26-Year-Old Secret Could Free Inmate

Lawyer-client privilege did not allow attorneys to reveal that he is innocent...he might get a new trial...

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when overdue, have an agency check on your status

If the member becomes overdue, SafeCheckIn will attempt first to call the individual by cell phone...if the member cannot be reached, SafeCheckIn will begin to notify and inform the member's primary contacts and/or the proper authorities of the member's overdue status...I wonder if you can enroll a person, and have the service check on them for you.

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Twitter, Jaiku, and Pownce webapp

TwitKu is a web app that lets you monitor and post to Twitter, Jaiku and Pownce, on a single webpage...you can post a single message to the accounts at one time...there is a mobile version...

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Top Video Games For Gamers Of All Ages

...results of a recent survey from AOL and the Associated Press...

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Steve Ballmer: Vista is "a work in progress"

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer during a speech to the company's Most Valuable Professionals conference in Seattle...

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Release Schedule of Windows XP Service Pack 3

Per Tech ARP.

In an attempt to help prepare you for it:

Windows XP Service Pack 3 Overview

and, per Neowin.net, Windows XP Service Pack 3 release dates...

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Blind users still struggle with computing obstacles

Best Practices for HTML...guidelines for designing accessible Web sites (Section 508 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act of 1973)...screen readers cannot read Completely Automated Public Turing Test (CAPTCHA), and options can leave out the deaf-blind...cell phones need expensive screen readers...Many have small, flat buttons that are useless to the blind...kitchen appliances have digital readouts that are useless to the blind...

read more | digg story
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more DNA to be collected involuntarily

The government plans to begin collecting DNA samples from anyone arrested...the federal government could store DNA samples of people who are not guilty of any crime...

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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

'Iron Man' Trailer To Be Adapted Into Full-Length Film

This is a good "bit"...

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FBI using power they don't have

...officials in FBI headquarters wanted an agent to demand records under the USA Patriot Act, using a power the FBI did not have...then, FBI director Robert Mueller stated in congressional testimony that the USA Patriot Act need to be expanded...The first audit of the FBI's use of the power found the agents sloppy in their use of the power, and one HQ office went rogue and issued hundreds of fake emergency requests for phone records...

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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

German schoolboy, 13, corrects NASA's asteroid figures

A 13-year-old German schoolboy corrected NASA's estimates on the chances of an asteroid colliding with Earth...(I shoulda had this kid do my taxes.)

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confess publicly, and anonymously, via postcard

PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a homemade postcard.

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Windows XP SP3 Release Dates

...we've managed to get our hands on the internal schedule...forced automatic updates won't land until June...

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PC World: The Web's Best Free Stuff

...online services...downloadable software...

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Trend, Sophos, and McAfee flunk Vista SP1 anti-virus tests

Products from Symantec, Microsoft, AVG, and Kaspersky Lab all passed...

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Monday, April 14, 2008

When your spouse is a slob

...Is there such a thing as a moderately clean middle ground?...

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Sunday, April 13, 2008

How To Fly Through Airport Security

Dress, and pack, for minimum hassle...

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Saturday, April 12, 2008

Goodbye Tax-Free Internet Shopping

...new law shifts collection requirement to online retailers in a move that other states could follow, but legal uncertainties abound. (My gut reaction would have been to not ship to New York, anymore...but that's me.)

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Friday, April 11, 2008

Accidental 35-cent gas drives throngs to station, jams roads

Hundreds of people took advantage of the cheap gas after an employee accidentally set the price at 35 cents/gal...The price should have been $3.35. (Those who paid by credit card could find the full price added retroactively...)

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

HP admits to selling infected flash-floppy drives

Hewlett-Packard has been selling USB-based hybrid flash-floppy drives that were pre-infected with malware, the company said last week in a security bulletin.

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Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Hanes "Wedgie Free" campaign

Women can win underwear (these won't have my face...uh...picture on them).

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Yahoo to run Google ads

End of "round three"? WWMD (What will Microsoft do) next in "round four"?...

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(more) USB jewelry

I had made a post about a USB drive necklace that was the kinda "bling" I'd flaunt...

Here are some that are more "sophisticated" in their styling:
cufflinks...keychains...Storage capacity is 2 GB in general, upgrades are possible...The actual collection is made of sterling silver, available in limited edition.
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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Who's giving Vista a miss and waiting for Windows 7?

What I'VE been saying...

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Make the text on your screen larger or smaller

including icons...Windows Vista DPI Scaling...

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Monday, April 7, 2008

8GB USB Flash Drive for $19

eCost

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Time calls Ars Technica an "overrated blog"

(If I'm missing something, then shame on me...)

Time is no longer on my list of "magazines I should look through": "...Verdict: too much technology. Hardly any art. And lose the fruity name."

Unless they have an acceptable explanation for the "hardly any art" comment, they are too much out of touch. If it was supposed to be funny, it ain't...
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Saturday, April 5, 2008

Microsoft gives Yahoo! an ultimatum

As much as I like The Shield and Dirt, I am enjoying this drama...

------------------------------------------

Microsoft has given...three weeks to accept its buyout bid before it launches a proxy fight and possibly lowers its offer price.

"If we have not concluded an agreement within the next three weeks, we will be compelled to take our case directly to your shareholders, including the initiation of a proxy contest to elect an alternative slate of directors for the Yahoo! board..."

On Feb. 1, Microsoft proposed to acquire Yahoo! for $44 billion in cash and stock. The deal represented a 62% premium to Yahoo!'s stock price. Since then...Microsoft shares have dipped and the deal is now valued at $42 billion. In his letter, Ballmer said..."The substantial premium reflected in our initial proposal anticipated a friendly transaction with you...If we are forced to take an offer directly to your shareholders, that action will have an undesirable impact on the value of your company from our perspective, which will be reflected in the terms of our proposal."
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website basics

(As with all things) Some comments I agree with...others I don't...others: debatable...

------------------------------------------

"...the basics for a successful site: Keep it simple, clean and well-organized.

"Don't Use Flash Animations...The landing pages of some sites require visitors to wait for a Flash animation to load before they can access the site's content...make the user experience as fast and simple as possible. Anything that gets in the...way should be seriously reconsidered.

"Flash animation can slow your site down...People get impatient on the Web, and if you make them wait, they'll go somewhere else."

-------------------------------------------

I hate Flash: I don't always get to use a fast internet connection, AND I use slow computers and PDAs...

------------------------------------------

"...Ask your designer to create a content management system (CMS) for your site. The CMS is essentially a database that allows you to make Web site edits and additions using simple templates in a Web browser. Changes are reflected immediately on the site...

"When in Doubt, Leave it Out...If it's not necessary, don't do it."

------------------------------------------------

I need to quickly complete tasks and move on to other things...I won't invest much time and effort in websites: unless I'm killing time, I will quickly move on. And it's possible I may never return to the/your site...
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Friday, April 4, 2008

women could win a business grant

women can apply for a grant to help begin "the next breakthrough idea or a new small business"...(and don't forget my "finder's fee"...)

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"Funplex" music video, The B-52's

CNET TV

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Windows Life-Cycle

...advanced notification of planned changes in product availability and support...

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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

democracy always a good thing?


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Autistic Children Linked to Same Sperm Donor

This is the second story I'm aware of today where a donor had passed on something unexpected (http://news.google.com/news?ie=UTF-8&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&tab=wn&ncl=1147169863&hl=en)...

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FCC Extends Comment Deadlines on Localism Proposals

The Federal Communications Commission will give broadcasters and others more time to weigh in on its proposed new localism rules, which could require stations to convene community advisory boards to help determine public-interest programming, and even mandate the types and amount of local programming provided, among numerous other proposals.

...the FCC extended those dates to April 28 and June 11...after broadcasters and others asked for more time...
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