Welcome to the 412th 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!
I had a nice birthday. I pooled the money I received and bought an HP
Photosmart C3180 All-in-One printer. I also looked at a Lexmark (didn't
like only having 1 cartridge to do both colour and black) and an Epson (my
previous experience with Epson was that they were slow) printer, but I decided
that since I've had no issues at all with any HP device I've ever used, I'd
stick with HP. I've only used it a bit, but so far, so good!
So Andrew goes in on Friday for his tonsillectomy
and adenoidectomy. He just started school this week, and then has to
miss the first fill week recovering. Poor little guy. Both Lisa and I will
be there all weekend to look after him. He's looking forward to all the ice
Many more white children use the Internet than do Hispanic and black students,
a reminder that going online is hardly a way of life for everyone.
Two of every three white students -- 67 percent -- use the Internet, but
less than half of blacks and Hispanics do, according to federal data released
Tuesday. For Hispanics the figure is 44 percent; for blacks, it's 47 percent.
This creates incredible barriers for minorities," said Mark Lloyd,
a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress and an expert on how
communications influence civil rights.
The guy from Bentonville, Ark., surely isn't on any of Hollywood's leading
man lists. A 23-year Wal-Mart Stores veteran, David Porter is the person
at the retail giant who orders DVDs and slashes prices to move them. But
this summer, Porter has been one of Hollywood's hottest acts, taking meetings
with top studio brass like a producer with a hot script. His pitch: Wal-Mart
That prospect tends to send shivers through Hollywood's Gucci-toed corner
offices. As the largest seller of DVDs, Wal-Mart accounts for roughly 40%
of the $17 billion in DVDs that will be sold this year, a financial lifeline
to big-spending studios. But now Wal-Mart's video business faces a potential
threat by Steve Jobs and Apple Computer (AAPL), which in mid-September, sources
tell BusinessWeek, plans to announce it will start offering movie downloads
from its iTunes store.
Free Wi-Fi access is now available in the central Toronto downtown core,
following the launch of One Zone, the wireless network from Toronto Hydro
Available in a six-square kilometre area, bounded by Front St to the south,
Bloor St to the north, stretching east/west from around Bathurst St to Parliament
St, the network is free of charge during a six month introductory period.
Hundreds and hundreds of megabits are now flowing around Toronto," enthused
David Dobbin, Toronto Hydro Telecom president. "Our new WiFi network,
combined with our 450-kilometre fibre network, is a powerful combination
of leading edge technology."
Telephone telepathy? Researcher says it rings true
Many people have experienced the phenomenon of receiving a telephone call
from someone shortly after thinking about them. Now a scientist says he has
proof of what he calls telephone telepathy.
Rupert Sheldrake, whose research is funded by the respected Trinity College
in Cambridge, England, said on Tuesday he has conducted experiments that
proved such precognition exists for telephone calls and even e-mails.
Each person in the trials was asked to give researchers names and phone numbers
of four relatives or friends. These were then called at random and told to
ring the subject who had to identify the caller before answering the phone.
"The hit rate was 45 percent, well above the 25 percent you would have expected," he
told the annual meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science. "The
odds against this being a chance effect are 1,000 billion to one."
He said he found the same result with people being asked to name one of four
people sending them an e-mail before it had landed.
Take A Course - Digital Photography Tip of the Week
It has been a long road, but I hope everyone enjoyed my 4 part series on digital
black and white photography. One thing that wasn't mentioned in my tips though,
be sure you take your photographs in colour! Shooting in black and white mode
on your camera will eliminate all of the colour information you can use to
create dynamic black and white photos.
This week's tip is a simple one featuring a few avenues with which you can improve
your photography. With school starting and fall approaching, there are many continuing
education courses in photography available at local high schools and colleges.
The courses offered often have a wide range of skills that they build upon, and
there are courses for photographers of all abilities. I have taken a few courses
over the years at my local community college and found them rewarding. I have
also mentioned camera and photography clubs in the past as a way to meet with
other people who share a common interest as well as provide a forum for you to
improve upon your own photography. Many clubs will be starting in the coming
weeks so if that is something that interests you, look up your local club and
attend a meeting.
There are always ways to improve you photography. From snapshooters to professionals,
everyone can benefit from interacting with other photographers.
Until next week, happy shooting.
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 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.
Regular reader Pat sent me a great document of Microsoft Word shortcuts
and tips. As I looked into it, I found it was originally referenced on the
InformationWeek site in an article called Office
Letter: A Cheat Sheet for Word:
Office Letter reader Lyn Hancock wrote to share her list of shortcuts
This is an aid that I began several years ago and several Word versions
back. I add to it when I discover something new and try to update it
when new Word versions are released, so it is very much a work in progress.
Note: I don't guarantee that the information is absolutely correct and
it is certainly not complete.
In the last year I've mentioned Box.net a
couple of times (here and here).
It is an online storage site. They provide you with 1GB of space for free
and you pay if you want more than that. They just recently started a new
service called Box.net/lite.
It allows you to share files up to 10MB in size:
Add a photo, song, document, video, or file into your facebook notes,
myspace, or blog.
They host the file for you. So essentially you can use this as a file hosting
service similar to PutFile.com.
I'm not sure what restrictions there are, but this could come in handy.
News and history junkies take heart: Google's new News Archive Search
lets you search back over twenty decades worth of historical content, including
scads of articles not previously available via the search engine.
"The goal of this service is to allow people to search and explore
how history unfolded," said Anurag Acharya, Google distinguished engineer,
who played a major role in shepherding the new product.
Google has partnered with news organizations including Time, The Wall
Street Journal, The New York Times, the Guardian and the Washington Post,
and aggregators including Factiva, LexisNexis, Thomson Gale and HighBeam
Research, to index the full-text of content going back 200 years.
I've looked at the site a bit
and it looks neat. I tried to think of something that would have a history,
so I searched for "queen of england" (without the quotes). It brought
up results from the New York Times that went back to 1854. Unfortunately,
to actually view the article, you had to have a "subscription" to
the Newspaper Archive. Overall the news archive search seems like a good
idea, but I think they'll have a hard time actually getting people to pay.
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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