Stevenator65’s Weblog

Technology, Commentary, Opinions, Reviews and Fun Happenings.

Happy Anniversary!

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16 years ago today, my wife and I got married.  Since then we’ve had 3 beautiful kids, 2 dogs, several guinea pigs, a turtle, fish and hamsters.  Coming the day after Thanksgiving, I give thanks to my gorgeous wife for the wonderful family we have built.  We have endured some hard times, including the death of her father, but have persevered and have a very loving relationship.  She is funny, smart and a joy to spend time with.  I never dreamed things would turn out so well.  We live in a nice home in a great community and have many friends.  Life is good and I give thanks.  Love you Cheri!

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November 28, 2008 Posted by | Social Events | Leave a comment

Freedom Slim KeyPad Almost Here

slim

Freedom Input just emailed me and told me that the oft-delayed and long awaited Slim KeyPad is available for pre-order and they will be receiving the first ones in mid December.  Here are some details:

The slimmest lightest keyboard available in the market.
This light ultra slim metallic keypad is lightweight and slips easily into the pocket.

The new Freedom Slim Keypad. Sleek, sexy, small yet fully functional. Not just cool in looks and feel, it will be using both HID and SPP profiles, thus offering a wide range of compatibility with most Smartphones and PDA’s including BlackBerry devices.

The keypad is only 10mm or just over a quarter if an inch thick, and features the popular Motorola RAZR style metal keys with an switched option to back illuminate.

This looks to be a very exciting product.  Pricing is SRP: $69.95. €59.99(inc tax). £39.99(inc tax).

Read more at the Freedom website

November 25, 2008 Posted by | Accessories, Technology | Leave a comment

Top 50 Reasons to have Sex

My wife and I love the show, “How I met Your Mother.”  It’s kinda like a Friends incarnation.  There are 5 characters, 2 of which are married.  Of the other 3, Barney is the king of one night stands, Robin is a news anchor and Ted is an Architect.  During a conversation the married couple had a dispute where the husband said the only reason to have sex is for love.  The wife and other characters disagreed, saying there were many reasons.  The husband challenged the wife to come up with just one, but she came up with 50.  How many reasons have you used?:

50_reasons 

From CBS Primetime

November 25, 2008 Posted by | Humor | Leave a comment

USB 3.0 Finally on the Way

usbport

8 years ago the USB 2.0 specification was released.  It was a huge improvement over the USB 1.0 spec, speeding transfer of data by a factor of 40 times, enabling downloads of 60 MB per second.  USB 3.0 will bring a tenfold increase to that speed, or 600 MB per second.  What does this mean to you?  Look at the speed differences between the three specs:

Transfer of a 25GB HD movie:

  • USB 1.0: 9.3 hours
  • USB 2.0: 13.9 minutes
  • USB 3.0: 70 seconds

That’s a significant improvement.  Unfortunately you may not see USB 3.0 until 2010.  Microsoft is trying to work it into Windows 7, and is deciding whether to add support for it in Vista.

Read more about it at CNET

November 17, 2008 Posted by | Accessories, Opinions, Utilities, Windows | Leave a comment

Convert DVDs for the iPod for Free

There are many ways to convert DVDs for use on your iPod.  I will illustrate one of them here.  Download and install two software programs, DVD43 and Handbrake.  DVD43 runs in the background and decrypts, or removes copy protection, from the movie.  It works with Windows 2000, XP and Vista.

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In the taskbar pictured above you can see the green smiling face on the left.  When a DVD is in your drive, the smiley face signifies that DVD43 is ready to work.  A yellow unhappy face (on the right) means there is no DVD in the drive.  You don’t have to do anything with this program after it’s installed.  It runs automatically.  

Continue reading

November 9, 2008 Posted by | iPod, Software, Tutorial | Leave a comment

Gone Phishing in Nigeria

I wish I knew how my email address became so popular!  I get so many emails from people and companies I’ve never had contact with before.  I must be real special.  Fortunately, some are very important, like this one: (the “div id=message>” was part of the email)

div id=message>

Bank of America Higher Standards

Online Banking Alert

Need additional up to the minute account
information? Sign
in

Your Online Banking is Blocked

Because of unusual number of invalid login attempts on you account, we had to believe that, their might be some security problem on you account. So we have decided to put an extra verification process to ensure your identity and your account security. Please click on sign in to Online Banking to continue to the verification process and ensure your account security. It is all about your security. Thank you. and visit the customer service section.


Olympic Logo
Bank of Amer ica , N.A. Member FDIC.
Equal Housing Lender
© 2008 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved

 

I am shocked to hear that my online banking is blocked.  That’s weird because I don’t have online banking and Bank of America is not my bank.  And if they were, they would probably spellcheck any emails they send.  Sadly, I bet some people fall for this.

The next email is one of many like it that I receive every day:

FROM: Mr. Alexander A Flockhart
Email:
alexander_flockhart21@yahoo.com.hk
Dear Friend,
I am Mr. Alexander A Flockhart Assistance Executive Director and Chief
Financial Officer of the Hang Seng Bank Ltd.I have a Secured business
suggestion for you.
Before the U.S and Iraqi war our client Col. Hosam Hassan who was with the
Iraqi forces and also business man made a numbered fixed deposit for 18
calendar months, with a value of Thirty million United State Dollars
($30,000,000.00) only in my branch. Upon maturity several notices was sent
to him, even during the war early this year. Again after the war another
notification was sent and still no response came from him. We later find
out that Col. Hosam Hassan along with his wife and only daughter had been
killed during the war in a bomb blast that hit their home.
After further investigation it was also discovered that Col. Hosam Hassan
did not declare any next of kin in his official papers including the Paper
work of his bank deposit. And he also confided in me the last time he was
at my office that no one except me knew of his deposit in my Bank. So,
Thirty million United State Dollars ($30,000,000.00) is still lying in my
bank and no one will ever come forward to claim it. What bothers me most
is that according to the laws of my country at the expiration 6 years the
funds will revert to the ownership of the Hong Kong Government if nobody
applies to claim the funds.
Against this backdrop, my suggestion to you is that I will like you as a
foreigner to stand as the next of kin to Col. Hosam Hassan so that you
will be able to receive his funds. Once the funds have been transferred to
your nominated bank account we shall share in the ratio of 60% for me, 40%
for you, Should you be interested please send me information’s
below,
1. Full names and Age
2. Private phone number
3. Current residential address.
I will prefer you reach me on my private Email address  below;
E-mail:
alexander_flockhart21@yahoo.com.hk
And finally after that I shall provide you with more details on this
transaction. Your earliest response to this letter will be highly
appreciated.
Kind Regards,
Mr. Alexander A Flockhart.

 

I guess you don’t have to be a good speller to be the “Assistance Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer of the Hang Seng Bank Ltd.” 

 

If someone can tell me how these people get your email I’d appreciate it. 

November 8, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

WakefieldSoft Announces Election Day Sale

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Save 25% on WakefieldSoft’s many titles until November 8.  I have been using LoanExpert for a long time and find it to be outstanding.  They are a first rate software company and with this huge discount you have a chance to get premium quality software at great prices.  Here’s the email they sent me:

We are celebrating our country’s freedom with our Election Week Software
Sale. Use the special discount code below to SAVE 25% on your purchase of
PC or handheld software until November 8th. Get out and vote too!
Visit http://www.wakefieldsoft.com/ to learn more about or purchase any of
our products which include:
* HealthFile  – organize your health information: weight, cholesterol,
glucose, etc!
* PDACookbook – recipe and cookbook software, menu planner, & shopping
list!
* AutoFile    – track your vehicle trips, service, fuel economy and more!
* InfoSafe    – securely store your passwords, accounts, credit cards, &
more!
* LoanExpert  – mortgage and loan calculator, amortize & save loan
scenarios!
* BookBag     – organize books or what you have read, use it at the
bookstore!
* DoInventory – inventory your home or business, barcode scanner support!
* VideoList   – organize your DVD and Video collection, carry it with you!
* AudioList   – organize your CDs, MP3s, etc. Download info from the
internet!
TO GET THE DISCOUNT:
After adding one or more of our products to the shopping cart from our
website, enter the promotion code: VOTE on the shopping cart page, then
click Update Cart. Your 25% discount will be applied! (Note that the
discount will only work in our normal buy links, not with Paypal.)

November 5, 2008 Posted by | Software, Steals and Deals | Leave a comment

Obama Makes First Cabinet Selection – Crosses Party Lines

In a surprise move, President Elect Barack Obama quickly filled an important position by crossing the aisle.  “I want to begin my presidency by filling a top position with a person I respect, admire and believe in.”  The position of Secretary of State requires expertise in negotiation with foreign powers.  Typically it is a partisan position filled by a senior member with vast knowledge and experience.  The position is also fourth in line for the presidency, hence the excitement over the move.   “Her foreign policy experience is second to none.  She is on the front lines and has proven successful in managing what many believe is a tenuous situation.”

“For the extremely important post of Secretary of State of the United States of America, I nominate Governor Sarah Palin of the great state of Alaska.  Some have asked me why?  My answer is simple.  She said it best:”

FeyPalin

Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and on the other side a land boundary that we have with Canada…(that enhances my foreign policy experience) because our next door neighbors are foreign countries.  They’re in the state that I am the executive of.”

Governor Palin could not be reached for comment, but is said to be mulling over this position with sincere thought.  Randy Scheunemann, John McCain’s chief foreign policy advisor, said, “This is a brilliant move by the President Elect.  This could be the first step towards healing relationships with foreign countries.  Sarah Palin will shine in her new role.”

Who’s the most excited person in the Palin camp?  Amy Strozzi, Gov. Sarah Palin’s traveling makeup artist.  Ms. Strozzi, who was nominated for an Emmy award for her makeup work on the television show “So You Think You Can Dance?”, stated, “I can’t wait to dress her up in the various outfits she’ll need when visiting so many different countries and cultures!  It’ll be like dressing up a doll!”  Ms. Stozzi was paid $22,800 for the first two weeks of October alone for her work on the presidential campaign.  Also excited about the possible move is  Angela Lew, who is Ms. Palin’s traveling hair stylist. She got $10,000 for “Communications Consulting” in the first half of October for the campaign.  “You know, when I did Sarah’s hair and came up with that cool updo, I was asked by Tina Fey to do her’s also.  My business has really taken off!”

Governor Palin’s husband Todd, when asked his thoughts on the move, said, “Look out Saks 5th and Neiman Marcus, we’re coming for YOU!”

Governor Palin is set to announce her decision later this week.  Last night, after Senator McCain’s concession speech, she boarded a plane headed to Illinois, presumably to meet with President Elect Obama.

November 5, 2008 Posted by | Humor | 1 Comment

Who Ran a Better Campaign, Obama or McCain?

obamamccain

I just read a great article at the Huffington Post.  The premise was that if you consider how each man ran his race, you would get an idea of what kind of president they would make.  It looks at things like their VP picks.  While Obama was extremely thorough in his search, McCain made a quick pick of Palin without much investigation.  This quote sums it best:

“And what did McCain do? When the right-wing elements of his party would not let him choose Joseph Lieberman, he responded by impetuously going with Sarah Palin. He reportedly made the decision after having had only one meeting and one phone conversation with her, and with no formal vetting process. And how did that work out for McCain? Palin has been roundly criticized, by individuals with a range of political orientations, for being unfit to be vice president. And while her selection energized the base and gave McCain a much-needed jolt of excitement in the campaign, the long-term results were far less positive. Her shocking lack of knowledge and depth of thought, as exposed in her disastrous interviews with Charlie Gibson and Katie Couric and her talking-points spewing performance in the debate, ultimately caused her to become a drag on the ticket, preventing many independents from supporting McCain. And she seemed to have an endless stream of skeletons in her Nieman-Marcus-stuffed closet, from ethics violations to the secessionist party her husband belonged to.”

You don’t have to be a political junkie (I’m not), nor a fan of either candidate, to really appreciate this excellent, well thought out and written article.

November 3, 2008 Posted by | Opinions, Social Events | Leave a comment

My Next Car Will Get 106 MPG!

Aircar

According to a report from Yahoo!, Indian car maker Tata, has begun production of a car that runs on a unique technology.  It combines compressed air with a splash of salad oil, gas, diesel, or a pint of gasoline to get 106 mpg while driving at a top speed of 35mph for up to 60 miles.  It can cruise at highway speeds for nearly 800 miles with a small motor that compresses air and keeps the tank filled.

These cars will also likely be built in the US starting in 2011.  Each state may get one or more factories,  depending on how many drivers that state has.  For example, California may get 17 factories.

This is not new technology.  It’s been around for decades, but was never utilized because the low cost of gas didn’t necessitate it until now.  With increased gas prices and pressure from the government to produce low emission vehicles, the time for this technology may be right.

Tata will not manufacture in the US.  Instead, they will license the technology for $15 million,  which includes a full turnkey auto plant.

November 3, 2008 Posted by | Technology | 2 Comments