Saturday, May 19, 2007

Links from the Gregg Zone!

1) If you are in any way, for or against what is happening on our planet, no matter what your politics or religion, or for that matter lack of any of them. No matter the depth of your apathy you should check out this YouTube flick, a twelve year old girl from Canada addresses the United Nations, about 7 min.

2) If you like to search around the net you might like this site, they claim to list almost a thousand search engines world wide, and adding more daily. Don’t know why, but it seems you can find stuff on these other engines that does not show up on google, although I suspect that they are in the google search, just on page three million and six or something, but that may have a new solution in the works. I will be asking for more discussion about this subject on this week’s show, if the engines use different criteria to complete the search, and if that might create an advantage to widen one’s searching tools, using different engine. Also about Google’s new web history, see next link for more.

3) Another item on searching I ran across an article linked here, about Google going universal. The article is about changes in their search engines. A lot of the changes seem to be a result of Google’s acquisition of YouTube and sound pretty interesting to me. Another thing I found when I was at the Google site looking for more info. They have a program called web history, at least for me this is going to be great, it keeps track of every web site you go to, has a search bar there just for your history breaks everything down into categories like video clips, web sites, images, etc. for a test I just searched maps, it instantly came up with the 89 maps I have looked at since I have been here. I always seem to be loosing a site that I like, no more. You might like to check this out also. Here is a link to the announcement of the new service from 4-19-07

4) An offering for the Art Bell crowd found on one of the above search engines, a site that I have not seen before using Google, in reference to the last referral. This is a link to that area 51 call that got knocked off the air. Says the mp3 takes fifteen min. to load, took about ten sec. for me, if you do listen to it be sure to listen through the silences to the end. It is only about five min. Here is one more A B type site I found interesting, lots of A B type material here with links.

Windows Home Server versus Linux or BSD

The link is to a blog entry by George Ou on ZDNet. I'm not much interested in the blog this time as I am by the list of features to be part of Windows Home Server. Read it and see why I think this is the most interesting and exciting product by Microsoft in a looooong time.


Friday, May 18, 2007

People Will Click On Anything

I can't make a comment on this one. It's a very short read and you should read it, if only for laughs.


Boing Boing: HOWTO Beat the stock market: buy customer service

Cory Doctorow highlights a link that concludes one can profit in the stock market by investing in companies that get 80% or above on a customer satisfaction survey. My initial thought was that this was PROOF that customer service pays off!! A point that needs way more attention!
From Boing Boing:
A study in the Journal of Marketing concludes that you can beat the market consistently by buying stock in companies with high customer satisfaction ratings:

"Using a back-tested paper portfolio and an actual case, the study's authors found that companies at the top 20% of the the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) outperformed the the stock market, generating a 40% return. Over time, the portfolio outperformed the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 93%, the S&P 500 by 201%, and NASDAQ by 335%. "

Boing Boing: HOWTO Beat the stock market: buy customer service
[picture credit]

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Vista Sideshow products start to trickle out

Okay; No sly digs at MS because it seems like even they got caught flat-footed by Vista's release. I promise. :)

Here is a short article on some products aimed directly at Vista users. I think the remote controls look great and I have some interest in the tablet, as well.

There will be a lot more of this sort of companion product in the coming months. Manufacturers held back, for some reason, and are only now starting to appear. I'm sure I'll be posting a lot of this sort of thing as time goes on and I look forward to it.


Defeating UAC with a two-stage malware attack

Ryan Naraine's blog entry on ZDNet explains the essentials of the attach that bypasses Vista's User Account Control (UAC). This is a theoretical attack at this time, but by all accounts it appears to be viable. It's worth checking out, even if you're not a security fanatic.

Everyone knew at least some of Vista's security features would be compromised eventually. Even Microsoft was under no illusions on that score. At least this one, while major, is able to be countered with patches. And I still think Vista is at the least marginally more secure than any version of Windows before it. Only time will tell if I am right or wrong.


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Re: calculating time remaining moving, deleteing, copying files verry slow

The link is to a forum post at Microsoft's TechNet about how moving, deleting or otherwise manipulating large files seems to take forever on Vista machines. I don't know if this applies to all Vista machines or just some, but it certainly did apply to mine and is one of the most aggravating things about Vista, in my opinion. The thread is one of the longest seen lately on TechNet.

Microsoft has little or nothing to say on the subject (depending on your interpretation and opinion of their statements) and the idea of a fix has not been mentioned. At least not yet.


Monday, May 14, 2007

Reminder: Monday is Wiretap the Internet Day | Wired Blogs

May 14th [today] is the official deadline for cable modem companies, DSL providers, broadband over powerline, satellite internet companies and some universities to finish wiring up their networks with FBI-friendly surveillance gear, to comply with the FCC's expanded interpretation of the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act.
Now that speed and efficiency is coming to internet surveillance. While CALEA is all about phones, the Justice Department began lobbying the FCC in 2002 to reinterpret the law as applying to the internet as well. The commission obliged, and last June a divided federal appeals court upheld the expansion 2-1. (The dissenting judge called the FCC's position "gobbledygook." But he was outnumbered.)

Reminder: Monday is Wiretap the Internet Day | Wired Blogs

Sunday, May 13, 2007

On Computers Radio Show Podcast 05-13-07

This is the On Computers Radio show podcast for 05-13-07. You can listen live every Sunday from 10AM to 1PM Pacific thats 1PM to 4PM Eastern. If you prefer, you can download the same file here via ftp.

"Links from the Gregg Zone!"

1) Okay, here we go this is one of my favorite mysteries of all time. I have been looking into this since before I got my first computer; let’s see now that’s about fifteen years? Give or take two or three, anyway I first ran across this subject a very long time ago, and still look into it occasionally to see if anything new has cropped up. As of today they still have no answer, it all began in 1795, yes that would be well over two hundred years ago. There have been six people loose their lives, several family fortunes (some very big ones) lost. A U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt, movie star Errol Flynn try and fail, several large companies formed and broken, and countless engineers fail in their endeavors to solve the mystery. If you are not familiar with this one you really should check it out, it is going on right now to this day. That latest link I found is current, Feb. 2007
I am referring to Oak Island in Nova Scotia, they have dug and drilled over two hundred and thirty feet, through oak platforms, iron plates, stone floors, caverns, spruce platforms, layers of coconut fibers (nearest coconut tree 1500 miles away, remember 1795). There are elaborate tunnels that flood the shaft built into the system, it is said that it is an engineering masterpiece. No one even knows what is there, if anything, the original thought was Captain Kidd the pirate buried his treasure here, that changed when they found stone tablets over a hundred feet down that originated in Egypt (traced by geologic composition of the rock) with Coptic (speculation more than one translation) writing on them, speculation goes from treasure, to libraries (they found sheepskin with writing) even to the Holy Grail, Ark of the Covenant, and Knights Templar. The possible connection I’m offering is even further out there than that. This is really one of the most interesting treasure stories ever. I have put up two links, just because I think it deserves some extra attention. You can watch some video here; there are several, plus some info. This is the latest one I found I guess they are turning it into a tourist attraction, complete with lectures and guided tours, wish I lived in the Northeast.
2) I think there may be a connection between this event, The Shag Harbor U.F.O. Incident, and the Oak Island story. They are both within a few miles geographically, both under ground (or water), both unsolved, both seem to require a technology unavailable to the time, and place. It would be an interesting angle for the Art Bell types to research. This is one of the best documented in the field usually rated in the top five, the link is for a YouTube video series by Discovery Science five in all about ten min. each. If you want to read more just google Shag Harbor U.F.O. Incident, there is a lot out there.
3) This one is just for fun a Japanese candid camera type show; I liked it, but consider the source.

You can see some of the pictures from GeekMeet2007 at

Extending Must-have extensions

Thanks to John B. for this one.

While still new in development terms, these are handy extensions for Open Office users. I've already installed and am using Tabbed Windows extension and while I have to say it is almost crude, it is also incredibly handy to have.


One in 10 web pages laced with malware - Google

The link is to a 9 page PDF file which details the Google research that led to the headline above. I found it disturbing, though, oddly enough, not at all surprising. And I guess I'm pretty proud of my security management here at the "ottershouse" LAN because we have not been infected or affected by this.

Those of us who code or maintain web pages are going to have to clean up our acts, but the real need is for browser tools and security applications to combat this and protect the user base who are not technically apt enough to protect themselves.

Along with everything else I do, I think I am going to have to collect a software suite so "my" users can surf with some confidence. There are a lot of tools available and I will share what I find with you as it works out.