Welcome to the 387th 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!
Wow, after I talked about how the weather was improving last week, it sure
got cold this week. We had a beautiful weekend, but then yesterday and today
have been bitter cold. I hate winter (and apparently I'm
As I've mentioned, we are doing some work around the house. The other day
I heard an ad on the radio for the Habitat for Humanity ReStore.
It is a store where you can get used building supplies at low prices. We are
looking for some various wood items, and found several suitable ones for well
under half the price they would have been at Home
Depot. Of course some things are little more used than others, but if you
look, there is a fair amount of good material as well. If you need building
supplies, then be sure to check them out. It's for a good
A university in the Halifax area is banning the use of computer software
designed to help professors catch plagiarists.
Student leaders at Mount Saint Vincent University in Bedford, N.S., have
been lobbying to stop professors from using the online database turnitin.com,
and the university's senate agreed in a vote on Monday.
The university is banning all plagiarism detection software as of May, when
the summer session begins.
Windows Live offers Microsoft a quicker turnaround
Although it has taken Microsoft five years to develop the next version of
Windows, the software maker seems to crank out a new Windows Live service
every five minutes.
And, to some degree, that's the point.
Last fall, MSN executive David Cole and his colleagues pitched CEO Steve
Ballmer and Chairman Bill Gates on the idea that the company could launch
online services a whole lot faster than complicated software such as new
operating systems. They presented their plan with many of the online services
that have been introduced in recent months as part of Windows Live.
"They were amazed," Cole said in a recent internal e-mail to MSN workers. "And
they said if we could pull off that many releases, it would be monumental for
the company and for our customers."
Not long after that presentation, Gates touted the idea to the world, announcing
the "Live" era of software with a launch event in San Francisco.
A Cuban dissident who has been on a hunger strike for 36 days to demand
unfettered Internet access is refusing medication and his health is deteriorating
rapidly, fellow dissidents said on Wednesday.
Guillermo Farinas, a 41-year-old psychologist, went on a hunger strike on
Jan. 31 to press Cuba's Communist authorities to respect his right to freedom
of information and allow him Internet access, which is controlled by the
Browsing the internet has overtaken watching TV as the nation's favourite
leisure activity, says a new report.
A survey by search engine giant Google has found that Britons with internet
access now spend more time surfing the web than watching the box.
The average web user now spends 164 minutes online each day, equal to more
than 41 days per year, compared to 148 minutes or 37 days for TV viewers.
week I discussed how to hold your digital camera in order to achieve
better photos. This week I will give you a small tip to ensure your camera
can record your photos.
There are certain steps that need to be repeated again and again in the process
of digital photography. Shooting is only one of those processes. Transferring
images, organizing and cataloging images, backup all represent different parts
of your digital workflow. One piece that is often left out is keeping your
memory cards in working. I know of two different people who in the past week
have experienced errors in their memory cards, errors that could have been
avoided. One began with two unusable cards, and the other was only able to
shoot 1/2 the normal shots on his card.
Memory cards are like disk drives, there is an amount of space and an index.
When a file is written, the index is read to determine where the file may be
placed on the card, then it is written to that location and the index updated
with the new information. If something interrupts this procedure, the card
may be left with unreadable files using up space. After transferring your images
to your computer, a little bit of prep on the card may help keep you in top
shape. Formatting the memory card in the camera you will use it in will help
to ensure that it is free of any unwanted files or fragments of files that
may not allow you to get the full use out of that memory card. Deleting all
the pictures on the card will not provide you with the same maintenance though,
so be sure to format your memory cards after transferring your images. If you
are unsure about how to access the format command for your particular camera,
consult your manual. As for the two cases I mentioned earlier, both were solved
after formatting the card in camera.
Next week I will discuss how photo critiques can help your photography and
where you can get them.
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.
The Canadian IT Pro blog recently
posted a PDF file with a lot of handy keyboard shortcuts. It is a 5-page
document that lists shortcuts for Windows, Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Internet
Explorer, Outlook, Google, Adobe Reader, and a few specific advanced shortcuts.
It's quite good. You can download the PDF from their
The March 2006 issue of Windows
IT Pro magazine has a tip from Mark Minasi about some utilities that
Microsoft includes in their Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit:
The two resource kit tools - CDBurn and DVDBurn - exploit some of Windows
2003's and XP's under-the-hood disc-burning capabilities that the Roxio
software doesn't exploit. Given an ISO file, CDBurn or DVDBurn will create
a CD or DVD.
You can read more about the software on the Windows
IT Pro web site. You can download CDBurn and DVDBurn and other utilities
in the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit from the Microsoft
Favorville.com is a social networking tool which provides members
with the opportunity to help and be helped by others. With Favorville, members
can post help requests, offer help and help grow the community. Favorville
makes it easy to get in touch and build lasting connections with helpful
neighbors, both in your locale or across the global village.
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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