Monday, July 31, 2006

The hot weather seems determined to stay around for a while

Good morning, it's another Monday here in Kansas and the hot weather seems determined to stay around for a while longer with a high today of 105 and the next several days at 100 degrees or above. I really want to have my house insulated, our house is just over 100 years old and has no insulation in the walls. When it's hot outside the walls inside are hot to the touch ( the same goes for the cold winter months ). I guess that will be our next big expense. It's so hot here the cold water from the tap feels hot, no kidding.... In other news my son starts College in 22 days he is a little nervous but I know that he will do just fine.

His classes this semester are

Math-113 College Algebra

Psyc-100 College Orientation

CSIS-240 C++ Programming

COMM-207 Fundamentals Of Speech

PHYS-171 Physical Science

PHYS-172 Physical Science Lab

Hope everyone has a great week.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

It's just HOT..... Heat advisory remains in effect

Sorry I have not been posting too much, it's just to darn hot to do anything. Looks like we will have a cool down into the 90s Wednesday, oh boy....

Heat advisory remains in effect

The combination of very hot temperatures and high humidity will drive heat indices into the 105 to 110 degree range during the afternoon and early evening from today thru Tuesday. Since heat indices are determined for a shady and light wind environment ... exposure to full sunshine may increase these values by as much as 15 degrees!

Friday, July 28, 2006

Batman ... for Cookie :)

Batman for Cookie.

Firefox update plugs 'critical' holes...Version

Mozilla on Wednesday released an update to its popular Firefox Web browser that fixes a dozen vulnerabilities, seven of which it deems "critical."

The most serious of the flaws could be exploited by cyberattackers to commandeer a vulnerable PC, according to Mozilla. The company, which oversees Firefox development, has published security advisories for each of the flaws repaired by the Firefox update.

The flaws are fixed in Firefox, which Mozilla has started pushing out to Firefox users via the update feature in the open-source Web browser. In addition to the security fixes, the browser update includes stability improvements, as well as changes for the Frisian version for some users in the Netherlands, Mozilla said.

"Firefox is a security update that is part of our ongoing program to provide a safe Internet experience for our customers," Mozilla said on its Web site. "We recommend that all users upgrade to this latest version."

Security monitoring company Secunia rates the update as "highly critical," one notch below its most serious ranking.

Download the latest version of Firefox here.

Latest Yahoo Messenger breaks out of beta Version

Yahoo announced on Thursday the general availability of its latest chat application, which enables users to do a lot more than just chat.

The new Yahoo Instant Messenger with Voice, which offers telephony functions, features more than 180 plug-ins created by developers from inside and outside Yahoo.

Yahoo introduced the beta of Yahoo Messenger with Voice last month.

Two weeks ago, Yahoo and Microsoft made their IM services interoperable. The companies will eventually enable voice interoperability as part of the partnership, Bonforte said. No time line has been set for that yet, he said.

Yahoo isn't the only one beefing up its instant-messaging platform. Last month, Microsoft launched Windows Live Messenger, which automatically updates contact information and lets people share files by dragging and dropping files onto a contact list.

Go get the new version of yahoo Messenger with Voice Version today.

Make sure that you do the Custom install and opt out of the bloatware ( take the check marks out of the dialog boxes) see photos below.

IE 7 will be delivered in the fourth quarter as a "high priority" update

Microsoft thinks Internet Explorer 6 is so bad that they have decided to make Internet Explorer 7 a "high priority" update.

Microsoft plans to automatically push Internet Explorer 7 to Windows XP users when the browser update is ready later this year.

IE 7 will be delivered in the fourth quarter as a "high priority" update via Automatic Updates in Windows XP, Gary Schare, Microsoft's director of IE product management, said in an interview Tuesday.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Programs / web tools I use and how I use them

My son John A. posted this over at his Blog but we are trying to collaborate on this Blog. With Blogger you can have several people in a team all working on one Blog. I had an invitation sent to him from Blogger but the link is invalid. So until we get this resolved I will post his post here. This is the first of a four part post ( the others to be coming soon ) Thank you.

Here is a list of programs/web tools I use and how I use them.

This is the first post of about four that I will do on useful programs. I may go into more details on some of these programs at a later time but right now I am just giving a short description of them.

Tune Up: Utilities and system tools

Microsoft Tweak UI

Microsoft Tweak UI is part of the Microsoft powertoys. It gives you control of different system settings that you wouldn't normally be able to control in Windows XP. These include mouse settings, Explorer settings, taskbar settings, and more.


WinDirStat is a great program for seeing what's taking up space on your hard drive(s). It shows you a visual of all the files on your hard drive(s) which includes the size and the type of each file.


Like WinDirStat, JDiskReport shows you a visual of the files on your computer, but in a different way. In JDiskReport graphs and charts are used to give you a visual of the file sizes and types.


WinRAR is a useful program for compressing files. I use it to compress things I don't use but want to save for later and for files I send to people.

Belarc Advisor

Belarc Advisor makes a profile of your computer. This profile includes information on your Operating System, your Drives, Processor, System Model, Main Circuit Board, Memory Modules, Hard drives, Network Drives, Printers, Display, Multimedia, Bus Adapters, Software Licenses, Software Versions, and many other things.

Web Tools:


Google is by far the best search engine ever. Without it I don't know what I would do. I use it as my home page, a spellchecker, and for all my searches.


Wikipedia is a good online reference for learning about something quickly. I wouldn't count on it for having perfect information and would not use it for school papers.

25 of the best extensions for Firefox - Have It Your Way!

The following is a list of the best 25 extensions for Firefox. They have been classified into three board categories: those that add additional enhancements to the browser and improve a user's experience, those that add additional enhancements to certain web sites, and ...

read more | digg story

How to acces the internet via your standard Microsoft Calculator

How to acces the internet via your standard Microsoft Calculator

When your browser(s) is/are messed up for some unexplainable reason

1. Open your MS Calculator. This is normally found in Start => All Programs => Accessories => Calculator.

2. Open the help-window by pressing the F1 key.

3. Click the top-left corner icon of the help window once (Standard is a Document with a Questionmark).

4. Select Go to URL-address.

5. Type your address into the avaliable field, but remember to type http://, and not just www. (or equivalent).

6. Have fun!

This works with anything that pops up with a similar help window, like Notepad.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

First Dell store to open Tuesday in Dallas

"The first Dell Inc. store opens Tuesday in an upscale Dallas mall, but company officials insist they're not abandoning the computer maker's strategy of selling directly to customers over the phone and the Internet."

read more | digg story

A new spin on Podcasting BlogTalkRadio

Want to give Podcasting with a new spin a try? Try out BlogTalkRadio. With BlogTalkRadio you can make your very own Blog Show. Your BlogShow lets you host your own talk show online. Receive live callers, interview guests, and broadcast to an unlimited number of listeners. All you need is any type of phone, an internet connection, and something to say. All your listeners need is streaming audio or any type of phone should they choose to call in. Go on over to their website for more information.

Help Bring Back TechTV

Chris Pirillo is asking for your help to make the TechTV reunion a reality.

read more | digg story

Want to simplify? Add a monitor

They may conjure up the image of frantic day traders, but few pieces of technology can make your work at a desk more serene than a second monitor. Forget about constantly minimizing and maximizing windows to read a new email. Put Outlook on its own monitor, and go about your work in the other.

read more | digg story

Could You Afford to be Poor?

Example: "poor people are less likely to have bank accounts, which can be expensive for those with low balances, and so they tend to cash their pay checks at check-cashing businesses, which in the cities surveyed, charged $5 to $50 for a $500 check." Click here to read more...

read more | digg story

Monday, July 24, 2006

Podcasting Grows Up and Gets its Own Academy Awards

Podcasting has a new award based on the Academy Awards model. The Podcast Peer Awards are the first podcast awards given by podcasters, and the emphasis is on excellence rather than popularity. A unique voting system lets shows with small audiences compete with popular shows, and makes cheating virtually impossible.

read more | digg story

Sunday, July 23, 2006

I have asked my son to collaborate with me on this Blog

Good morning all, I have asked my son to collaborate with me on this Blog. Hopefully he will accept the invitation. He is a Computer Science major in College and has allot of insight into new technology. I think you will enjoy his post if he decides to come aboard.

Windows Live Messenger Error Code 8100030d

When you are trying to sign in Windows Live Messenger and you keep getting an Error Code 8100030d and you have Zone Alarm firewall then disable Zone Alram and retry. You might also want to check out the messenger support Blog.

Possible TechTV Reunion?

From Leo's Vox blog... Ideas are still being thrown around, but it looks like a TechTV reunion could be in the works in the near future! Get the word out and maybe we can help make this work! Plus Martin Sargent has offered to host! I was just telling someone how much I miss TechTV yesterday.

read more | digg story

Friday, July 21, 2006

Ad on MySpace Serves Up Adware to 1M PCs

Ad on MySpace Serves Up Adware to 1M PCs - CIO Tech Informer - Blog - CIO:

"Ad on MySpace Serves Up Adware to 1M PCs

More than 1 million users of and other websites may have been infected with adware spread by a banner advertisement, according to iDefense, a computer security group.

The advertisement, for a site called, appeared in user profiles on MySpace, an online community with at least 70 million users, said Ken Dunham, director of the rapid response team at iDefense, which is owned by VeriSign.

The ad exploits a problem in the way Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser handles Windows Metafile (WMF) image files."

Read the rest here at

Just another reason to use Firefox or Opera for your web browser :)

Guide to Useless Services ( Windows XP SP2 )

Windows runs a lot of stuff in the background that takes up memory and processor cycles. To find out what you don't need running there is help to be found. Guide to Useless Services is an article on TechTree written back in December that identifies and describes 29 services that are probably running on your computer and probably don't need to be. Go take a look. Just be careful when messing around here. If you don't know what your doing I would skip this article. If your computer is running slow it's probably better to go into MSCONFIG and stop some of your startup apps and upgrade your RAM. One more thing, if your computer is more than five years old maybe it's time to get a new one.
Flashback 1981 Computers

Video from Current TV, Steve Jobs in 1981. Boy this is really a flashback. I was born in 1964 and remember having an Apple II shown in the video.

Top 100 Digg Users Control 56% of Digg's HomePage Content

When folks think of Digg, they're often misled into believing that the content seen on the homepage is representative of what a wide base of Internet users think is news-worthy and important. The numbers tell a different story - that of all stories that make it to the front page of Digg, more than 20% come from a select group of 20 users.

read more | digg story

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Cheap Ways to Chill Out

Looking for a few ways to cool off in this record heat? Here are some favorite ways to keep cool.

read more | digg story

Microsoft Windows security for computer illiterates

Over at the "Geeks are Sexy technology news" site they have a good article that I recommend to anyone that uses Windows. It's all about Computer Security. It has allot of good advice on what to do and what not to do with your Windows PC.

Go over and take a look.

Rent-Free in NYC -- living on the edge of housing law...

Two musicians and a yogi have lived rent-free for two years in a Brooklyn loft. No, they're not living with their exasperated parents or beleaguered girlfriends. They are among the masses of New Yorkers living in illegal apartment buildings, and they stumbled onto the big advantage of residing outside the law: You don't have to pay rent.

read more | digg story

Oppressive heat.. Heat Wave

As you can see from my post for the last week we have been hot out here in Kansas. Yesterday it got up to 107 degrees. I am planning on cooking some hamburgers out on the grill tonight but if this heat keeps up I might just be cooking myself.

The heat wave did give me time to open my computer case and clean it out, boy the fans were really dirty. After the cleaning it did lower the temp by several degrees. With this oppressive heat and our air-condition only keeping the house in the 80s I was afraid the computer was going to fry along with us...

Which Browser is King? Firefox 2, IE 7, or Opera 9?

Firefox, Microsoft, and Opera have all come out with new browser version in the past couple of months. Which upgrade is the most significant? And which browser has the features and usability you're looking for?

read more | digg story

Opera USB: Portable Opera 9

What can 8MB left on a USB Flash drive get you? How about an entire browser where you can take all your data with you, on any computer you get on, but doesn't affect the guest computer! Similar to the Portable Firefox project, but for Opera. It's the latest version of Opera 9, with all the features included.

read more | digg story

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

XP's No-Reformat, Nondestructive Total-Rebuild Option

How to completely rebuild, repair, or refresh an existing XP installation without losing data, and without having to reinstall user software, reformat, or otherwise destructively alter the setup.nondestructive. Repair/reinstall article in information week by Fred Langa

read more | digg story

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

I am sick of the heat

I am sick of the heat. Yesterday it got up to 107 here and the temp in my air-conditioned house was in the mid 80s. This morning when I woke up it was 80 degrees outside at 6 am. Just look at the screen shot. The forecast for the next several days is highs of 105.




Monday, July 17, 2006

The True Batman Revealed

At the request of my wife this story appears below:

The True Batman Revealed.
Rooters Top Stories

Much to the horror of Navy Seabee Veterans
everywhere, the true identity of the original Batman
has been revealed.
He was a Batbee. Yes, a Batbee.

Files recently released from the Pentagon by an
unknown source sent top brass officials scrambling to
suppress the information. Much of the information
has been quashed, however some photographs were
quickly downloaded and are making the rounds of the
internet. A Pentagon spokesperson told reporters that
most of the information in the files has been retrieved
and the person or persons responsible for the leak have
not yet been identified.

The only information gleaned is that "Batman" the 1960's TV show was based on some of the Seabee's secret "Batbee" missions. All that is known is that "Batbee" trained and lived on board a fast attack submarine which was said to have surfaced at night to release "Batbee" for his secret recon missions. Bats are well known for their radar capabilities and Bees are known for doing secret food dances that only other Bees of that specific hive understand. It can only be assumed that the traits of the two would understandably be a boon for the military. All that remains of these files are the pictures below which clearly show a Seabee cap on the said "Batbee." It has been ascertained that the photographs are original and one can only speculate as to what "Batbee" did until more information is available. Be advised that some of the photographic content may frighten some adults that grew up with "Batman" the TV series. We would advise them to seek professional help if the photographs overwhelm them.

My wife had fun with Microsoft PhotoDraw.

This post is for Cookie, if you want to read his blog go here. :)

102 degrees with a heat index of 112

It has been hot here in Kansas. My wife Vicki took this screen shot yesterday while on her computer, 102 with a heat index of 112. Even with the central air running non stop it was 83 degrees in our house last night at 8pm. YUCK... By the way, today is supposed to be warmer. Oh what fun... :)


Flinstones Commericial

It turns out that Fred and Barney smoked Winstons.

5 Tools To Bulletproof Firefox

5 Tools To Bulletproof Firefox - Yahoo! News:

"Spyware, adware, drive-by downloads, phish blitzes, malware of all stripes, they all have one thing in common: they reach your computer through the wide open door that is your browser.

If the most important step you can take to secure your system is to use a secure browser, advice held by everyone apparently, including Microsoft, which is working feverishly on IE 7 to close the years'-long security gap it created by not keeping the app up to date"

Read the rest of the article here.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Microsoft Kills Off 'My Private Folder' App

Following an outcry from corporate customers, Microsoft is removing an add-on feature to Windows that allowed users to create password-protected folders. Are they basically saying people are not responsible enough for such a program? Even weirder is that "Microsoft said that the utility was designed as an "extra" or reward for installing the WGA service. Other extras included Windows Defender, an anti-spyware services, which also requires installation of the WGA service."

read more | digg story

Download it before it's gone here

How To Use Your Windows Media Player To Get Free Music Downloads

Short article explains how to use a WMP to get free music downloads.

read more | digg story

Saturday, July 15, 2006

GeekCorps: Geeks for a Good Cause

Geekcorps is a hard-working nonprofit that trains people in the developing world to use technology. Volunteers typically spend at least 4 months working intensively with locals who want to use technology to accomplish a goal, like creating a network. Geekcorps pays the volunteers' travel expenses, housing, meals and other incidental expenses.

read more | digg story

Friday, July 14, 2006

Free Linux Disks (not Ubuntu) has started a new project. A project that will give away free Linux disks of your favorite distribution (SUSE, Fedora, Mandriva, Gentoo, Debian, Knoppix). Have a look, give feedback, donate to the cause, request a disk.

read more | digg story

Microsoft releases new OS for old PCs

Extend the life of older PCs with "Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs".

Microsoft Corp. released a new version of its operating system for businesses this week that extends the life of older PCs by effectively turning them into thin-client computers.

Called Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs, the software is offered only to customers on Microsoft's Software Assurance licensing and maintenance program. It is not a full-featured operating system, but it improves the security and manageability of PCs for customers with systems that are too old for Windows XP and who aren't ready to upgrade their hardware, Microsoft said.

read more | digg story

Thursday, July 13, 2006

A non-technical explanation of RSS

Of Zen and Computing has an article that's been making the rounds lately, called A non-technical explanation of RSS. It is what it claims to be "A short, easy-to-parse description of what feeds are, how to find them, and how to read them, for people who aren't geeks."

If someone ask you what is RSS just send them to this site.

Security risk in Windows Live Messenger!!!

Do you save your password within Windows Live Messenger so that you don't have to enter it every time you want to sign in? Well if you do, you probably shouldn't!

Over at Fanatic Live, Doggie, TheSteve and Psyko have discovered that with only a few lines of code a hacker could gain access to any passwords saved through/for Windows Live Messenger. This can be done due to a problem in the way that Messenger stores your password - everything is stored in plain (unencrypted) text!

Find out how you can access your passwords (on your local computer only) in this thread at the Fanatic Live forums.

Thread (including code) at Fanatic Live forums


My son John A. went and checked it out and here is what he said.

John A. said:
OK, not just anyone can do it...
John A. said:
Has to be done on the local computer.
K. John said:
Good, what did you find out?
John A. said:
and you have to have some skill with Microsoft Visual C++ 2005 Express

John A. also said that there are other ways to use this exploit but it looks like they have to be done from the local computer.

Yahoo Messenger with Voice Beta. Screen Shots Yahoo! + Windows Live Messenger

After installing the updated Windows Live Messenger this morning I went ahead and installed the newest Yahoo Messenger Beta. The Beta allows you too contact your Windows Live contacts from your Yahoo Messenger.

Make sure that you do a custom Install when given a choice so you can opt out of all the Yahoo junk!!!

Cons: From "Yahoo IM users get more than they bargained for", CNet, September 1, 2005:

"By accepting Yahoo's 'typical' installation of YIM with Voice, it will also download Yahoo's Search Toolbar with anti-spyware and anti-pop-up software, desktop and system tray shortcuts, as well as Yahoo Extras, which will insert Yahoo links into the Internet Explorer browser. The IM client also contains 'live words,' which will automatically show an icon when the user highlights words online and then hyperlink to Yahoo search results, definitions or translation tools. Finally, the installation will alter the users' home page and auto-search functions to point to Yahoo by default.

To avoid these changes, users must actively choose the 'custom' installation and uncheck five boxes."

Windows Live Messenger - talk to Yahoo! contacts. Yahoo! + Windows Live Messenger

With the new Windows Live Messenger you can connect to your Yahoo contacts and talk to them. I downloaded and installed it today. Your contacts on Yahoo will have to have the latest version of Yahoo Messenger with voice for it to work. As long as your friends have the beta version of Yahoo! Messenger with Voice, you’re set. When you add them to your contact list, they’ll get all the information they need to gear up and connect with you. Once you sign up, you can add Yahoo! Messenger contacts to your contact list in the usual way. Under “Contacts,” click “Add a contact” and enter your friend’s Yahoo! e-mail address. Here are some screen shots of the download.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The Fake Broadband Price War

Techdirt: The Fake Broadband Price War:

"One of the favorite lines trotted out by the telcos and their think tanks concerning the lack of competition in the telco world is that there obviously is competition, otherwise how would you explain the fact that DSL prices keep getting cheaper. The problem is that this is false. While it's true that many DSL providers now offer introductory, time-limited, promotional pricing, the price can go up quite a bit once the promotion ends. Not only that, but since they refuse to offer you DSL without a phone line, you're going to end up paying a lot more than the promotional rate no matter what"

Click here to read the rest of the article at Techdirt.

Make Opera looks like other browsers

Here are some cool skins to make Opera look like other browsers.
"Whether you want to help ease a transition from one browser to another, or you just like the look of other browsers, you can use skins and toolbar setups to make Opera look and behave like other browsers."

read more | digg story

How Safe is Coffee?

Being a big Coffee drinker I am always interested in weather or not drinking all the Coffee I do is going to cause me problems in the future. I might have just found the answer. The Mayo Clinic has an article about the safety or Coffee.

In summary:

One large study of 128,000 men and women showed no increase in the risk of heart disease from drinking filtered coffee. The findings […] indicated that it didn’t matter how much coffee participants drank.

But another study of 4,000 coffee drinkers […] found that two or more cups of coffee a day can increase the risk of heart disease in people with a specific genetic mutation that slows the breakdown of caffeine in the body.

Regarding other health effects of coffee, some evidence suggests that drinking coffee may protect against type 2 diabetes and colon cancer.

Basically, it probably isn’t bad for you. It might even be a little bit good for you. But, moderation is key.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Breaking News: Pink Floyd's Barrett dies aged 60

Syd Barrett, one of the original members of legendary rock group Pink Floyd, has died at the age of 60, the band's spokesman has confirmed.

read more | digg story

Microsoft Ends Support of Windows 98 Today - Gizmodo

"Hey there, kiddies, Uncle Billy really hopes you're not still using Windows 98 because starting today his mom and pop operation is no longer offering technical support for it. Internet Explorer on the fritz? Task bar disappeared? BSODs getting you down? Well, it's no longer his problem, so tough cookies.

In addition to ending [paid, over the phone] technical support, Microsoft is no longer offering security updates for its old OS. There's an estimated 70 million users out there who are still using the affected software, Windows 98, Windows 98 SE and Windows Me. How this might affect the propagation of worms and viruses can only be speculated, but considering most remaining installations of Windows 98 are home users, it's safe to say that the magic 8 ball reads, 'outlook not so good.'

Microsoft originally wanted to end all support for its legacy OS by the end of 2003, but following customer complaints decided to extend paid support for a little while longer. That time has now ended. Let the fun begin!"

Bohemian Rhapsody... Oueen


It's 6am and I have been up for 3 1/2 hrs so I just listened to this and then thought why not post it. After all, it's one of the best.

Bohemian Rhapsody, written by Freddie Mercury for the 1975 album A Night At The Opera, was the first single to be issued from the album and provided Queen with their first international No. 1 hit. It has also been named The Song of The Millennium and the Guinness Book of Records' Number One Song of All Time!

Room planner app that lets you create your own customized floor plans has a handy little room planner app that lets you create your own customized floor plans to fit any room in your home. Take a look at the screen shot of my family room, then give it a try yourself.

Microsoft College ( Video )

"Nefarious techniques”, “sweat-shop practices”, “digital void”, “free soda”… piqued your interest? Click here to get the full investigative report. ( Windows Media Player Required )

After the video come back and take a look at Microsoft's College website.

Microsoft College.

Monday, July 10, 2006

20/20 Stupid in America

A 20-20 investigation by John Stossel entitled "Stupid in America" highlighting some of the flaws with the education system in the United States.

Can't connect to Windows Live Messenger today?

After looking at my stats counter I see that a lot of people are searching for "Can't connect to Windows Live Messenger". I had my son do a check with some software, "WLM Servers" and you can see what he found out. It looks like some of their servers are offline.

To get the WLMServers BETA 0.4 software yourself go here.

Is your computer suffering from slow shut downs?

Is your computer suffering from slow shut downs? If so you might want to download and install the "User Profile Hive Cleanup Service" from Microsoft. This free utility automatically cleans up user profiles and prevents you from playing the timeout wait game.
Once you run the setup wizard it will look like the installer did nothing. If you open up your services list (Click start, then run and type services.msc now click ok), you will see that a new service is running in the background. The idea of this program is to reclaim resources when a task is finished (memory, handles, etc). It accomplishes this by monitoring for users to log off and verifying that unused resources are reclaimed. This approach is superior as it works for any known reason that profiles do not unload and also will keep working to address new unknown issues.

Download from Microsoft here.

Teenagers used to push Zango Adware on Myspace?

A ring of "Myspace profile edit" sites encourage Myspace users to add their "free videos" to their profiles. What they *don't* mention, is that these videos pop open a box that tries to install Zango Adware when someone visits a profile running these movies. Getting what is likely teenagers to unknowingly distribute this stuff is a new low.

read more | digg story

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Colleges go cellular to contact students - Yahoo! News

"For Ron Chicken and other freshmen at Montclair State University, the new freedoms that presumably came with college age included a mandatory cell phone with which the school could pinpoint their whereabouts on or off campus."

Read the rest of the Article here.

My son has been granted a Presidents academic scholarship

Good morning all, hope everyone has an enjoyable Sunday. We got some good news yesterday. My son John A. received a letter from the college he will be attending next month. The letter was to notify him the he has been granted a Presidents academic scholarship. It will pay for 17 hours of Tuition each semester and also his books. Congratulations to my son. His major is Computer Science.

Why is Firefox So Darn Popular?

When considering how it handles downloads, the absence of ActiveX, the total lack of Firefox users complaining about excessive spyware infestations and even the fact that the browser has allowed for such great extensions to be created by motivated Firefox users is an exciting achievement.

read more | digg story

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Windows Vista: No Upgrading Necessary

My Desktop Click Image to see larger version.

My Sons Desktop with Desktop Sidebar. Click Image to see larger version

I found a really neat site today that's called "The Poor Man's Windows Vista: No Upgrading Necessary" after visiting the site I downloaded and installed Desktop Sidebar I will try it out for a few days and let you know how it goes. So far I really like it. It has an auto hide feature so you don't lose screen real-estate. So far it is using an acceptable 8 megs of ram on my system. See screen shots above to see it on my or my sons desktop.

From their site.

How can you make this possible? Choose from among a wide selection of information conduits (e.g. MS Outlook, toolbars, newsfeeds), called "panels". Fully customizable, Desktop Sidebar allows you to dock these panels to the edge of the screen, or arrange them anywhere on your desktop as you wish. All panels are configurable with a number of specific options. With hundreds of skins available in our Extension Exchange Page and an easy to use Skin Editor, you can freely change the appearance of Desktop Sidebar to suit your tastes.

Pre-installed Panels include:
Mail Checker
Messenger, Miranda IM and ICQ
Media Player
Volume Control
Search Bar

Download Desktop Sidebar

Top 150 Popular Firefox Extensions and Opera

I was just reading my tech news and came across this interesting site. He list the "Top 150 Popular Firefox Extensions and Opera." Take a look at what this person has to show you about Firefox and Opera. Can Opera really do what Firefox extensions do? The short answer, sometimes.

Top 150 Popular Firefox Extensions and Opera

Download... Microsoft Private Folder

Microsoft Private Folder 1.0 is a useful tool for you to protect your private data when your friends, colleagues, kids or other people share your PC or account. With this tool, you will get one password protected folder called 'My Private Folder' in your account to save your personal files. Download and have your private folder today!

The following hardware and software are required to run Microsoft Private Folder 1.0:

Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Professional Edition and Media Center Edition with SP2

Super VGA (800 x 600) or higher-resolution video adapter and monitor

Get it today.

This functionality already exists in an open-source project called TrueCrypt (with a bunch of additional features), but if you'd rather be running Microsoft software, Microsoft Private Folder is now available.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

The end of Windows 98/ME technical support

The second Tuesday of this month brings something else in addition to Microsoft Security Updates. July 11th will also mark the end of Windows 98/ME technical support. It's now the end of their lifecycle.

According to IDC figures, there are an estimated 70 million 98/ME machines still in operation worldwide.

So what to do if you're still running an older OS? Make sure that you have a good antivirus product and a firewall. Check out Microsoft's Security At Home 98 & ME for more information.

If you're still holding on to older hardware because you're a hobbist, you might also consider trying out a lightweight distribution of Linux. Live CDs make it quite easy to give it a try.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Opera making big profits from free software

Despite the fact that its most popular product is free, the company in extremely profitable. For 2004 (the last year for which results have been posted to its web site, it generated a gross profit of around $US14 million on revenues of $US30 million.

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Firefox creator's thoughts on IE7, and Future of Firefox

Blake Ross was a teenager in 2002 when he and fellow software developer Dave Hyatt launched the Mozilla Firefox project -- a community-made Web browser that has won devoted fans and taken market share from Microsoft's dominant Internet Explorer, stirring the Redmond company into action.

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Sunday, July 02, 2006

Firefox Power User Guide v. 1.9

Upgrade to Firefox 1.5!Take a look at Will Langford's latest Firefox guide updated today July,2. He has "reorganized how the extensions are listed, added more hacks, and some more customization hacks." If you have never see it before it is definitely worth a look.

Click here to see Will Langford's latest Firefox guide.

Save Granny... Get Firefox

This has to be one of the most interesting ways to spread Firefox that I have seen so far. Save Granny is run by a group of Stanford students who have been working with the Mozilla Foundation to help spread the Firefox web Browser.

Go to and take a look.

Update Windows From Firefox And Opera

Google Operating System: Update Windows From Firefox And Opera:

"Many people that use Firefox or Opera, open Internet Explorer just to go to Windows Update to patch the security holes of their operating system (and, of course, create other security problems). In the last months, Windows Update site is very hard to use, it requires to have some Windows services like Automatic Updates and BITS set to automatic, it forces you to install a piece of spyware called Windows Genunine Advantage that will deactivate your OS if it thinks your copy isn't licensed (not yet, but Microsoft intends to do so).

But there's another way: WindizUpdate is a site that allows you to install Windows updates using Firefox and Opera. It installs a plug-in that detects what updates you need to install, downloads the setup for each update and installs them. It may not be official, but:

* updates are downloaded from Microsoft's site
* it doesn't collect personal identifiable information
* it doesn't require Windows Genunine Advantage and it doesn't install it
* you don't have to use Internet Explorer, neither the ActiveX for Windows Update
* you don't get dialogs that prompt you to restart the computer

If you still don't trust the site, you can find a forum where you can post questions or read other people's problems, without creating an account.

There are other ways to install the updates for Windows, but this is a great alternative to Microsoft's Windows Update."

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 Reviewed

Slashdot | Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 Reviewed:

"An anonymous reader writes to mention a review of the latest Beta release for Internet Explorer 7 on Paul Thurrott's SuperSite. From the article: 'While it's not enough to make me switch from Firefox yet -- I still love certain Firefox features such as inline search -- it's no longer an object of ridicule either. IE 7.0 Beta 3 includes huge functional and security advantages of IE 6 and is an absolute no brainer for anyone choosing to stick with IE. If you are an IE user, head over to the Microsoft Web site and pick up IE 7.0 Beta 3 today.' ZDNet has some first impressions of the release as well."

27 Of The Most Useful Firefox Extensions?

Good morning, If you go over to and read the Blog you will find the author's 27 most useful Firefox extentions. I don't agree with all of them but it is a good start. He states " Firefox has already more than 1200 extensions. Which ones are useful? After indulging in installing few hundred of them, I choose the 27 best, based on how much I use them every day. I've been impressed by many, but these 27 are the ones I use daily. The order is alphabetical." So, if you are a Firefox user go on over and take a look.

Read 27 Of The Most Useful Firefox Extensions.

What extentions do you find most useful?

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Worm appears as Microsoft antipiracy program

Security analysts have detected a new piece of malware that appears to run as a Microsoft Corp. program used to detect unlicensed versions of its operating system.
The malware has been classified as a worm and spreads through AOL LLC's Instant Messenger program. Sophos is calling it W32.Cuebot-K, a new variation in the Cuebot family of malware.

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Video: Microsoft's IE7 Beta 3

CNET's Robert Vamosi takes a first look at the latest Internet Explorer browser. Microsoft says it has fixed more than 1,000 bugs, and that security was a priority with the product. Robert concludes that IE is not as secure and that he will stay with Firefox 1.5. :)

Go here to watch the video