Welcome to the 333rd 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'm back from vacation. We didn't do that much, but it was probably the best
time off I've had in years! I had so much fun playing with Andrew and Matthew,
and of course it was nice being with Lisa. I have some pictures, but don't
have them ready to put up yet. I should have them ready to post for next week's
"If you're a young student who gets into trouble for doodling during
class, you should probably read this. And after you've read it, you should
clip it out, laminate it, punch two holes in the top, loop a string through
those holes, and wear it to school like a necklace.
This story is about your new hero, a guy who doodled a lot as a kid then
landed one of the sweetest gigs in the world because of it."
"As customers' expectations rise, giants like Amazon and EBay are finding
it harder to keep people happy.
A new study has found that customer satisfaction with online shopping plummeted
during the last holiday season. While some experts note that such dissatisfaction
is often the result of rising expectations, others suggest that companies
such as Amazon and EBay had better take note--or risk losing customers.
In the fourth quarter of 2004, customer satisfaction with online purchases
fell by 2.7 percent from the third-quarter figure, according to the American
Customer Satisfaction Index. That is the largest drop since the ACSI began
tracking e-commerce in 2000. Though the index fell slightly in 2001, overall
customer satisfaction has generally risen steadily until now.
Among the online retailers that the index tracks, Amazon and EBay took the
biggest hits, though both companies still maintained relatively high customer
satisfaction scores. On a 100-point scale, Amazon fell from 88 to 84, while
EBay dropped from 84 to 80."
"Doctors may no longer make house calls, but they are answering patient
e-mail messages--and being paid for it.
In a move to improve efficiency and control costs, health plans and medical
groups around the country are now beginning to pay doctors to reply by e-mail,
just as they pay for office visits. While some computer-literate doctors
have been using e-mail to communicate informally with patients for years,
most have never been paid for that service."
I was connected to a computer with Remote Desktop, and I realized that the
CD-ROM drive was open and I wanted to run something off the CD. I couldn't
figure out how to close the drawer. There is a context-sensitive menu item
that allows you to eject the drawer, but not one to close it. I did a search
for a utility that would help me do this, and I found NirCmd:
"NirCmd is a small command-line utility that allows you to do some useful
tasks without displaying any user interface. By running NirCmd with simple command-line
option, you can write and delete values and keys in the Registry, write values
into INI file, dial to your internet account or connect to a VPN network, restart
windows or shut down the computer, create shortcut to a file, change the created/modified
date of a file, change your display settings, turn off your monitor, open the
door of your CD-ROM drive, and more..."
I was able to successfully close the drawer. The utility also does over 40
other things as well. The main program page has a nice listing of a lot of
its uses. Check it out at http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/nircmd.html
WinZip(R) Companion for Outlook(R)
I've been a WinZip user for years (ever since I paid for the product). I
received this email yesterday afternoon:
We are pleased to inform you that we have introduced a new product,
WinZip(R) Companion for Outlook(R).
WinZip Companion for Outlook makes it easy for users of Microsoft(R) Outlook
to zip and encrypt attachments to outgoing e-mail messages.
Zipping attachments saves transmission time, conserves space in Outlook mailboxes,
and saves disk space for both the sender and recipient of the e-mail message.
The Companion can be configured to automatically zip your attachments, to
ask whether or not you want them zipped, or to let you zip and attach files
manually with just a few mouse clicks. Toolbar and menu items allow you to
control the Companion's functionality on a message-by-message basis.
For more information regarding WinZip Companion for Outlook, and to download
the evaluation version for a 45-day trial, please visit: http://www.winzip.com/prodpagewzcou.htm
I don't have a need for this sort of utility, but I've had people email
asking for recommendations of utilities that do this. I haven't tried this
(and don't really plan on it), but knowing the quality of the WinZip products,
it is probably quite good.
What's the name of that song?
There is a new commercial by Zellers with a catch tune and I wanted to find
out if it was a real song, or a jingle written for the commercial. A quick
search of the Internet brought me to AdTunes.com
"'What was the song used in that television commercial?'Now you can find
the answer at Adtunes.com - the weblog of information on music from TV ads, film
trailers, and more."
A quick search of
the forum showed me that someone else had the same question, but there has
been no answer yet.
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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