ADOBE PHOTOSHOP ELEMENTS

Adobe Photoshop is legendary. Graphics professionals can do magic with it, and they turn up their nose at anything else. I’ve tried to learn it repeatedly, and I remain firmly convinced it is the least intuitive, worst designed, most annoying program in the world. Did I mention that it’s incredibly expensive? […] continued

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NORTHPOINT DSL SUBSCRIBERS BEING DUMPED

Personally, I blame Pacific Bell. A year ago business was thriving for Northpoint and Covad, who acted as wholesalers and contracted with ISPs to set up and maintain DSL connections. The wholesalers were required to rely on Pacific Bell for one phase of the work, though, and Pacific Bell used that as leverage to put them out of business. […] continued

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WINDOWS 2000 & GAMES

Windows 2000 is so stable that it’s easy to forget to keep it up to date. If you’re running Windows 2000, visit Microsoft Windows Update and check for critical updates. (If you haven’t installed Service Pack 1, it’s a good idea, but not if you’re on a dialup connection – it’s a big download.) And if you’re a gamer, look for “Application Compatibility Updates.” They allow more than 180 programs to run that initially weren’t compatible with Win2K – especially games. […] continued

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UNDERSTANDING AND GUARDING AGAINST INTERNET-BASED ATTACKS

Another Symantec bulletin uses plain English to describe how hackers look for a computer to attack over the Internet, what might make you a target, and steps you can take to protect yourself. This is also highly recommended reading. […] continued

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TOP TEN WAYS TO PRESERVE YOUR DATA

Symantec circulated a very nice list of basic ways to protect your computer and preserve your data. This is highly recommended reading. Common sense, plain English descriptions about backups, creating Windows startup disks, updating virus definitions, preventing hackers, disabling the Windows Scripting Host, and more. Check it out! […] continued

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MICROSOFT WINDOWS XP

Windows 2000 Professional is the most stable operating system ever released for a personal computer. It’s a joy. But it’s missing some of the cuddly features that home users appreciate, it wasn’t marketed aggressively to small businesses, and many users were left out because upgrades from Windows 98/ME to Win2K are virtually impossible. […] continued

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LOGITECH CORDLESS OPTICAL MOUSE

I know a couple of people who picked up the Logitech cordless keyboard/mouse combo over at Costco. Thumbs up all round, so far. Tomorrow Logitech will introduce a wireless optical mouse. “Optical” means it doesn’t have a ball on the bottom, and it doesn’t need a mouse pad. No cord, no mouse pad – pretty tempting, eh? […] continued

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MAC OS X

I’ve already had some evangelists tell me that Apple’s new operating system, OS X, will be the jewel that restores Apple’s market position and credibility. (It will be sold at retail starting next week, and shipped with new systems starting this summer. A network server version will follow eventually.) Apple zealots are a special breed. […] continued

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ONSTREAM IN BANKRUPTCY

OnStream made tape backup systems. I loved them. Unparalleled reliability. A unique tape format, but I never had a problem with one of their cartridges. When I think of the hours I’ve lost wrestling with conventional Travan tape drives . . . well, OnStream was like a breath of fresh air. […] continued

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GOOGLE TOOLBAR

Google continues to provide search results that are so accurate that it’s spooky. It bears repeating – as much as I hate screen clutter, I recommend the Google Toolbar, a browser addon that puts a slender Google search bar across the top of the screen. Not only do you get easy access to Google, it also lets you search for words on the page you’re viewing at that moment, as well as allowing you to search only the pages of the web site you’re visiting. […] continued

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FLAT-PANEL MONITORS

Prices on flat-panel monitors are finally falling. and it looks like this summer will be the time to buy one. The prediction is that a 15″ flat-screen monitor will be in the $400 range, and 17-18 inch monitors will be $700 or so. (Don’t forget that the measurements are different on the LCD monitors, so a 15 inch flat screen has almost the same amount of screen area as a 17″ conventional monitor.) Click here for more info. […] continued

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NORTON ANTIVIRUS BUGGY E-MAIL PROTECTION

Norton Antivirus offers a feature called “e-mail protection” that I routinely turn off. It’s a service that scans e-mail for viruses as messages come into your system – an appealing idea, but it’s implemented badly. It changes the settings for your POP3 server and frequently prevents e-mail from being retrieved at all. […] continued

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AFTER NAPSTER

Napster is gone. Its death may be more or less protracted, but it’s all over. There will now be a period of confusion – most of you will be well served by waiting until the dust settles. I’m a big fan of Media Jukebox, so I like their offer of $3 billion to the record industry to begin a new subscription-based source for legal online music. […] continued

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GINGER UNWRAPPED

Ginger, the much-hyped device invented by Dean Kamen, apparently is a two-wheeled scooter-like device that will run nearly emission-free using a hydrogen-based engine.Here’s an article with more info about Ginger. That might not grab you at first, but two things are worth thinking about: (1) An emission-free engine? Think about that for a second. […] continued

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NEW VERSION OF MICROSOFT OFFICE SOON

Microsoft Office XP will arrive in a few months, the successor to MS Office 2000. Not much information on new features, but the company believes it’s an important new release, especially for people who held off on upgrading to Office 2000. As I understand it, the new version includes a “product activation” feature that makes it much more difficult to avoid paying Microsoft a license fee for each copy installed. […] continued

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