Welcome to the 391st issue of the PC Improvement News. PCIN consists mainly
of news and tips. There is something for everyone, and if this is your first
issue, I'm sure there will be something for you. If you give me two or three
issues, I know that you will come back for more!
Do you have a pedometer?
One of those devices that counts your steps? I did, but it was bright red (that
my mother had gotten free in a Tylenol package), so I didn't really want to
have that on my belt. Then someone at work was nice enough to trade with me.
She had a black one that she gave me, and I wear it all the time. I'm almost
obsessed with it :-) I walk a lot, and I make sure that I get at least 10,000
steps a day. The other day I made it to almost 20,000!
Last Thursday we had an opportunity to stay for free at the new Great
Wolf Lodge that is opening in Niagara
Falls this weekend. They had a "soft" opening, where you stayed
for free. It's a way for the staff to practice. The hotel is great and has
a fantastic indoor waterpark. We were there for about 15 minutes and Lisa
said to me, "Let's live here!" The boys loved playing in the water,
and there were lots of other things for kids as well. It was well worth the
The key to unlocking a cure for cancer might be sitting in your den or home
Modeled after the groundbreaking and wildly popular SETI@home project, scientists
have conceived Rosetta@home to harness the power of PCs to solve basic problems
Rosetta@home plans to use the extensive number-crunching power of computer
time donated by tens of thousands of individuals to hopefully unravel basic
mysteries of proteins, the building blocks of life.
Some 300,000 Europeans rushed to register their new ".eu" Internet
domain names in the first hour of being able to sign up to the new Web site
addresses, European Union officials said Friday.
Registrations for the new domain name opened up to those who reside in the
25-nation EU on a first-come, first served basis, the European Commission
EU Commissioner Viviane Reding said the Commission hopes the new ".eu" name
will one day rival the ".com" name.
Landline telephones may soon need a lifeline as more people cut the cord
in favor of Voice over IP (VoIP) and wireless phone alternatives.
VoIP subscribers in the U.S. are expected to hit the 32.6 million mark by
2010, which means that roughly 40 percent of all broadband households in
the country will be using VoIP systems from Vonage, AT&T and others in
This compares with about 5.2 million VoIP subscribers with an expected 9.6
million by the end of this year, according to a report just released by eMarketer.
Sitting in the line of fire is the $190 billion fixed-line telephony industry,
which is expected to lose users and revenues as cable companies, ISPs and
others take a piece of the pie.
Podcasts are to bloggers what MySpace sites are to teens: All the cool kids
have one. So Forrester probably expected a big reaction with a new report
that claims podcasts are not exactly taking the wired world by storm.
The research firm's new study claims that only 1 percent of online households
in North America regularly download and listen to podcasts.
Forrester analyst Charlene Li says on her blog that while there's definitely
a business case for podcasts, companies "shouldn't be dashing out to
create expensive original content for a small audience--unless they gain
value from being seen as innovative."
One of the most basic tips that
I can offer is also one that can really yield a lot of results, and one that
is often forgotten. Read your manuals.
Today's digital cameras, even the simple point and shoot ones, have a lot
of features that you may not even be aware of, let alone use. My mother recently
purchased a Canon Rebel XT, a digital
SLR, for my father. The most important thing I could tell him was to read
his manual. If you camera has a few features, you may be able to go over the
whole manual in one shot. If it has a lot of features, do it over a period
of time, reading and learning each new feature one at a time. When you read
the manual, have the camera beside you so that you can follow along with the
instruction in the manual.
Is there something about digital photography you would like to know? Why don't
you send me your questions and I will do what I can to answer them. Send a
picture along and I might include in a future tip.
The digital photography tip of the week is written by the PCIN Assistant
Editor, Chris Empey. Chris is a long time photographer and is currently
the vice-president of the Niagara Falls Camera Club. You can see more of
his photography at his Photo
of the Day website.
If you have a tip to send Chris, or a question about digital photography
he can address in the newsletter, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download or Order Virtual Server 2005 R2 Enterprise Edition for Free
Within the last week, Microsoft started offering their Virtual Server
2005 R2 software for free. This allows you to run multiple operating systems
at the same time on one computer using virtualization. This is the same sort
of technology that VMware uses.
You can "Download or Order Virtual Server 2005 R2 Enterprise Edition for
Free" from the Microsoft site.
If you run a web site, then you should definitely check out this
web site. The BackLink Analyzer Tool gives
you access to sites that link to you, who owns that site, the Google cache
of these pages, and more...
Information The Backlinks Analyzer gives
Number of Links to Domain
Number of Links to Homepage
Pages Indexed (shows the number of pages in Yahoo for site:www.domain.com
Deep Link Percentage (Links to Homepage compared to Links to domain)
Finds all unique linking domains
Shows IP addresses & unique c block addresses of each of those
Domains from .mil, .gov, .edu, or .ac.uk. (a link from one of these
is rated better in certain ranking algorithms.)
The Backlinks Analyzer tool also bolds and autochecks domains that
link from 5 or more pages. You can then requery the Yahoo! database
and spider deeper than the 1,000 link limit.
The Backlinks Analyzer tool uses the Yahoo! API, provides CSV outputs.
Special thanks to Aaron Wall for making this great tool.
As I mentioned before, Michael Robertson (of MP3.com fame) is backing
development of online software tools using AJAX. He previously had announced ajaxWrite and ajaxSketch.
You can get notification of new programs from the ajaxLaunch.com announcement
Shoot, Mix, and Share your Video.
Use the eyespot Mixer to edit and combine your videos, music and photos online!
Share your video and mixes with the world for Free.
I haven't tried it (I don't have any video to edit), but it sounds pretty
cool to be able to edit simple video in your browser. If you've tried it,
be sure to leave a comment.
Note: AJAX is a development process/technique. You can learn about it on Wikipedia.
Fred, This just came in Scott Spanbauer's weekly PCWorld
newsletter "Software Report" (give credit where credit is
due). http://partitionlogic.org.uk/index.html is
the home of J. Andrew (Andy) McLaughlin's website devoted to "Partition
Logic." Among it's other features:
- FREE! (GNU general public licence)
- It can create, delete, format, defragment, resize, and move partitions
and modify their attributes. It can copy entire hard disks from one to
another. - It's basically intended to duplicate the work of commercial
programs such as Partition Magic, Ghost, Drive Image or BootItNG -- but
for FREE. - It works from a bootable floppy or CD, under it's own operating
system. - And did I mention that it's FREE?
I fear for the site's survival -- it might get hit with the dreaded "Langa
effect." ---Bruce Fraser
Excellent, Bruce: Looks like a nice tool! A small caveat: Note the
version number, which is below "1.0" While it's always smart
to make a backup before using any partition tool, it's especially important
when the tool is young, as this one is. But it looks super so far---
and a free self-contained partition tool with a graphical front end
is a very nice addition to the toolbox.
I haven't tried it, but it sounds interesting. Check
PCIN is brought to you by Graham Wing. The opinions expressed are those of
the Editor, Graham Wing and the Assistant Editor, Chris Empey. Graham Wing
and Chris Empey accept no responsibility for the results obtained from trying
the tips in this newsletter.
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