Welcome to the 442nd issue of the PC Improvement News. PCIN consists mainly
of news highlights 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!
Spring is here, finally! This weekend is supposed to be cool (there is some
light snow falling right now), but overall the weather is much nicer and you
can see the flowers starting to grow. Another sign of Spring is that baseball
is back as well (I'm a big fan). Hopefully the Jays will
do well this year.
I tried to install Vista on my laptop the other day, but it only has 256 MB
of RAM, so it wouldn't install. It's not that it was so or failed, it actually
told me there wasn't enough memory so it wouldn't even start installing. I
was a little surprised at that. I've got more memory on the way, so I'll try
again another time.
Nearly half of companies globally have suffered a business disruption owing
to malware, according to Webroot Software's latest State of Internet Security
The organised nature, rapid growth and severity of cyber-crime has pushed
it to the FBI's number three priority behind counter-terrorism and counter-intelligence.
Webroot's research discovered that 4.2 million, or 1.7 per cent, of 250 million
URLs around the world harbour malware. Almost three million of these malicious
sites were discovered in 2006 alone.
Warm up those thumbs.
What's billed as the first text messaging competition will take place in
Los Angeles on Saturday, pitting scores of players in a race to determine
who is the fastest.
The snag is that popular text shorthand will not be allowed.
It's the year 2014, and Googlezon, a fearsomely powerful combination of
search engine Google Inc. and online store Amazon.com Inc., has crushed traditional
media to bits. Taking its place is the computer-generated Evolving Personalized
Information Construct - an online package of news, entertainment, blogs,
and services drawn from all the world's up-to-the-minute knowledge and customized
to match your preferences. And it's all collected, packaged, and controlled
This is the future according to EPIC 2014, a faux documentary posted to the
Web in late 2004 by young journalists Matt Thompson and Robin Sloan. Thanks
to their slightly tongue-in-cheek, Twilight Zone-inspired tone, the short
video drew as many chuckles as gasps of dismay from the legions of mainstream
media types and Web digerati who viewed it. Today, nobody's laughing.
Until two weeks ago, Ruth Ebert never had the slightest interest in the
video games favored by her one and only granddaughter.
I'm 82 years old, so I missed that part of our culture. Soap operas,
yes. Video games, no," chirped Ebert, who recently started playing
a tennis game on Nintendo Co. Ltd.'s new Wii video game console at the
Virginia retirement community she calls home.
It was funny, because normally I would not be someone who would do that," said
Ebert, who picked up the console's motion-sensing Wiimote and challenged
the machine to a match.
I played tennis, if you can call it that, as a high school student. I
had such fun doing it," she said.
Adjust White Balance - Digital Photography Tip of the Week
I am just finishing up my review of Adobe Lightroom. So far I am very impressed
with Adobe's new offering with only a few issues. This week's tip is for Lightroom
I have talked in the past about how important proper white balance is in your
photographs. If your camera has the ability to shoot RAW you have the ability
to control white balance after you take the image. With Lightroom, you can
now adjust your colour balance whether you shoot JPG or RAW in a non-destructive
In the Develop module of Lightroom, click on the White Balance Selector. As
you move the eye dropper around your image, the image in the Navigator provides
a live preview of the changes that will occur in your image with a new white
If you regularly hide panes when working on an image, you may be missing out
on some great features that Lightroom offers.
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.
Want to get a total unbiased report on a new product you are thinking
about purchasing? ProductWiki can help.
ProductWiki is a product
information site that is based off of a collaborative wiki format. The
website is entirely maintained by visitors and users who share information
or review consumer products from around the world.
I've browsed the site briefly, and it appears to have thousands of reviews
in various categories. If you are looking at buying something, it would probably
be worthwhile to browse ProductWiki before
making your purchase.
No matter what kind of IT job you have, chances are you spend a lot of
time moving files and directories from one place to another - whether from
your desktop to a USB key or from server to server over the network. Often,
it's important to keep those directories synchronized to ensure you aren't
creating unnecessary duplicates and that you're working with the latest
version of the files. Sometimes you may need to synchronize files and directories
across many machines, as when deploying static XML or HTML files across
a set of Web servers. Allway Sync from Usov Lab is a helpful tool for handling
these kinds of tasks.
Late last year I linked a list of PC World where they had 101
Fabulous Freebies. The list has been updated:
Once upon a time you actually had to pay for great software and services
-- hard to believe, but true.
We revved up our cable modem and searched for the most intriguing free
offerings out there. After we took each download or service for a test-drive,
we picked the very best, and came up with the following list of 101 great
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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