FTC Disclosure

Life is complicated enough without getting into hotwater with federal agencies so: TAKE NOTE Many things I review I got at no charge in exchange for an honest review. Consider this as informing you that ALL things I review may have been gotten at no charge. Realistically about 60% but in order to keep things above board just assume that I got the stuff free. Words like, “sponsored,” “promotion,” “paid ad” or even just “ad” are clear ways to disclose that you’re being paid to share information and links so BE AWARE that some of what I write can be described as an AD by the government. BTW I will NEVER say a product is great, super or even acceptable if it isn't whether I got it free or NOT!

Amazon

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Beware Of A Domain Registration Renewal Scam


I got a very official looking email today telling me that my Domain is going to expire in two days and I have to renew immediately or lose revenue when people can’t find my website. The company claims to be Domain Services with an email address at hotmail. They offer immediate renewal at rates that are roughly 10 times what you would pay at any reputable domain registrar. They have obviously garnered a list of sites and are sending out mass emails to try and snare gullible domain owners into unnecessary renewals.

My domain does not expire for another six years and even if it did expire my revue loss would be insignificant. This is another obvious and blatant Internet SCAM. I have reported the email address to Hotmail but who knows what they will do with it. There will be harried domain administrators who will succumb to panic and send this scam artist a grotesquely huge domain renewal fee. The snake oil salesman is alive and sadly well, one can only hope they will at some point reap what they are sowing.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Unchain the Printer

I know enough already on printers. I guess I get interested in something and can’t let go. I mentioned in a past blog that one way to get rid of printer cables is to get a Bluetooth printer. That is easy to say and easy to find but most of us don’t have Bluetooth in our computers unless maybe we have a fairly new laptop. Well don’t despair, there is a solution. The USB Bluetooth adapter is alive and available from TrendNet. Now you can buy any Bluetooth enabled printer and stick it anywhere you want within 30 feet of your computer. No more cable clutter, no more noise beside your desk just a foot loose and fancy free printer across the room for only $24.58 at Amazon, plus free shipping if you can find something else to get over $25.00. This isn’t a paid blog but if you buy one from Amazon, I will get a commission, not enough to buy this myself unless way bunches of you buy one.

TRENDnet's TBW-102UB Bluetooth USB Adapter allows you to make short-range wireless connections between your computer and Bluetooth enabled devices such as Cellular Phone, PDA, and Computer. It is compact and portable, eliminating the need for cables and physical connections between electronic devices. The Bluetooth USB Adapter transmission ensures both protection from interference and secured data transfers. Simply plug the USB Adapter into the USB port and enjoy the freedom and flexibility of Bluetooth wireless technology.
Features and Benefits
· Compliant with USB 1.1 and Bluetooth 1.1 Specifications
· Uses 2.4GHz ISM Frequency Band with Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (FHSS) Standard
· High-Speed Wireless Transmissions, up to 723Kbps Data Throughput
· Compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP
· Allows any Computer with USB Connections to become a Bluetooth Enabled Computer
· Enables Computers to Connect to Bluetooth Printer and Bluetooth Enabled Mobile Devices (PDA and Cellular Phone)
· Built-in High Security 128-bit (WEP) Encryption for Communications between Bluetooth Devices
· Synchronize devices in Personal Area Network (PAN) Automatically to Keep Data Consistent
· Plug & Play and Easy Installation
· Connection Range Up to 100 meters (320 ft.)
· 3-Year Warranty
Product Description1.Venture into the wireless realm with TRENDnet Bluetooth technology. Enhance your PCs with Bluetooth peripherals. Unclutter your workspace with TRENDnets TBW-102UB Bluetooth wireless technology.2.Compliant with USB 1.1, Bluetooth 1.1 and 1.2 Specification .Uses 2.4GHz ISM frequency band with Gaussian Frequency Shift keying (GFSK) standard . Supports both Asynchronous Connectionless Link (ACL ) and Synchronous Connection Oriented (SCO). High-Speed wireless data transmission, up to 723Kbps Data Throughput in ACL mode, and up to 64 Kbps in SCO mode .Compatible with Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP, Mac OS X 10.2.8 or above .Built-in 128-bit encryption for secured data communications .Enable computers to connect Bluetooth enabled devices such as printers, Headset, Audio/Video, Basic Image, PDAs, and mobile phones .Supports Generic Access (GAP), Service Discovery Application (SDAP), Serial Port (SPP), Dial-up Network(DUN), Fax, File Transfer (FTP), LAN Access (LAP), Synchronization (SYNC), Object Push (OPP), Generic Object Exchange (GEOP), Headset (HSP), and Hardcopy Cable Replacement (HCRP), Human Interface Device (HID) device.Compliant with Class 1 Bluetooth Operations.Communicates wirelessly up to 100 meters (328 ft.) in limited condition.Trouble free Plug-n-Play Installation.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Complacency or Stupidity, Your Choice.


I recently fried one of my favorite toys. My 7” digital photo frame is now a perfectly good, electronic paper weight. I hadn’t changed the photos for awhile and I took the thing off the wall to put in a new SD card. I couldn’t get it to turn off so I just pulled out the SD card while it was running. The photo frame took severe umbrage to that and now displays lots of very colorful vertical lines instead of my photos.

I know better, you shut down equipment before doing stuff like that. Sadly I ignored what I know and fried something which gives me a lot of pleasure. I will buy a new one and it will be better. Technology marches ahead and that frame was first generation. Still, I feel like a lost an old friend. I often found myself totally lost in watching the photos pop up. I reveled in the joy my grandchildren showed when they saw them selves on the screen. Yes, this is much ado about no big thing but I hate feeling stupid and that is what fried the frame. Take heed, learn from someone else’s error, fried eggs are good, fried frames, not so much.


Saturday, May 23, 2009

Printer Cable Be Gone!

Sometimes your desk is just too crowded to stick your printer on it. Across the room there is plenty of space but it is such a pain in the butt running cables. There is a solution, trash your printer and buy a Bluetooth printer and add a Bluetooth card to your computer or continue to use your existing printer and add the Linksys WPSM54G Wireless-G USB Print Server.

The Linksys Wireless-G Print Server with Multifunction Printer Support lets you connect a multifunction USB printer directly to your network, eliminating the need to dedicate a PC to print sharing chores. Using a Print Server frees up your "print share PC" so you don''t have to leave it on all the time. It also removes the printing bottleneck, and sets your PC free to do more useful work. The Print Server is compatible with most USB multifunction printers, and allows full access to printing, faxing, scanning, and copying functions. Like any print server, users on the network can print anytime. The other functions are treated a little differently -- any user can request access to one of the other functions, and get exclusive use of that function until his task is complete. Connect the Print Server directly to your network by 10/100 Ethernet cable, or wirelessly at up to 54Mbps via Wireless-G. The wireless option lets you put your printer wherever you want to, without having to run cables. Whichever way the Print Server is attached to your network, both your wireless and wired PCs will have access to it, and the printer it''s connected to. And if you don''t use wireless for general networking in your office, you can still use the Wireless-G connection in ad-hoc mode to print from visiting Wireless-G and Wireless-B PCs. Your wireless data is protected by up to 128-bit WPA-PSK encryption. A user-friendly Setup Wizard makes installation easy, the compact case fits anywhere, and the big print buffer handles even large graphics-intensive print jobs. Let the Linksys Wireless-G Print Server with Multifunction Printer Support bring efficiency to all your home office tasks.



Features

Manufacturer Linksys

Wireless Technology Wi-Fi - IEEE 802.11b/g

Interfaces/Ports 1 x RJ-45 10/100Base-TX Network
1 x USB

Manufacturer Part Number WPSM54G

Standard Warranty 1 Year

Frequency Band/Bandwidth 2.4 GHz ISM Band

Manufacturer Website Address www.linksys.com

Dimensions 2.52" Height x 7.72" Width x 11.26" Depth

Transmission Speed 54Mbps

Transmission Speed Details 54Mbps Auto-fallback IEEE 802.11g
6Mbps IEEE 802.11g
11Mbps Auto-fallback IEEE 802.11b
1Mbps IEEE 802.11b

Product Name WPSM54G Wireless-G USB Print Server

Product Type Wireless Print Server


Tech Specs

Manufacturer Linksys

Manufacturer Part Number WPSM54G

Wireless Technology Wi-Fi - IEEE 802.11b/g

Standard Warranty 1 Year

Interfaces/Ports 1 x RJ-45 10/100Base-TX Network
1 x USB

Frequency Band/Bandwidth 2.4 GHz ISM Band

Manufacturer Website Address www.linksys.com

Dimensions 2.52" Height x 7.72" Width x 11.26" Depth

Brand Name Linksys

Transmission Speed 54Mbps

Transmission Speed Details 54Mbps Auto-fallback IEEE 802.11g
6Mbps IEEE 802.11g
11Mbps Auto-fallback IEEE 802.11b
1Mbps IEEE 802.11b

Product Name WPSM54G Wireless-G USB Print Server

Product Type Wireless Print Server

Wireless Security 128-bit WPA-PSK encryption

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Stick A Printer Up Your Network

Do catchy or semi-humorous titles get more people to read the blog? That is a question. Likelihood of a comment is minimal. Anyway, sometimes it seems like you need a printer somewhere besides right next to the computer. After rebate this puppy is only $22.50 including shipping from Buy.com. This is not a paid blog.

TRENDnet's TE100-P1U 10/100 Mini USB Print Server is an ideal network solution designed to transform virtually all conventional USB printer into a shared resource on your network. TE100-P1U has a 10/100Mbps auto-sensing RJ-45 port, which connects to either 10Mbps or 100Mbps network. With its "Automatic IP" feature, the Print Server will automatically configure its IP address, making installation quick and easy. For advanced management, you can configure the print server using the Windows-Based Wizard, Admin Software or Web Browser. Also, the TE100-P1U supports Internet Printing Protocol, so users can print remotely to the USB printer via the Internet. Compact in design, but packed with features the TE100-P1U is the most cost effective way to add a USB printer anywhere on your network!
Features
Interfaces/Ports 1 x RJ-45 10/100Base-TX Auto-sensing Network
1 x USB Printer
Manufacturer TRENDnet
Form Factor External
Manufacturer Part Number TE100-P1U
Standard Warranty 5 Year(s)
Manufacturer Website Address www.trendnet.com
Data Transfer Rate 10Mbps Ethernet @ 328 ft
100Mbps Fast Ethernet @ 328 ft
Product Name TE100-P1U Print Server

Tech Specs
Management BiAdmin (Windows Application) Web-based management (HTTP)
Interfaces/Ports 1 x RJ-45 10/100Base-TX Auto-sensing Network
1 x USB Printer
Manufacturer TRENDnet
Temperature 0 C (32 F) to 40 C (104 F) Operating
-10 C (14 F) to 70 C (158 F) Storage
Connectivity Media Category 3, 4, 5 UTP/STP 10Base-T
Category 5 UTP/STP 100Base-TX
Input Voltage 9 V DC Power Supply
Manufacturer Part Number TE100-P1U
Standard Warranty 5 Year(s)
Protocols TCP/IP
NetBEUI
AppleTalk
HTTP
LPD
SMB
IPP
EtherTalk
Additional Information Acts as a DHCP client or use 'Auto-IP' to self-assign an IP address automatically Supports Diagnostic Printing with all settings and current status information Upgradeable Firmware Note: Mac users are required to use a PC to configure the print server. Mac systems are only compatible with Post-Script printers.
Status Indicators Status Error
Input Current 500 mA @9V DC
Humidity 10 to 80% Operating
5 to 90% Storage
Data Transfer Rate 10Mbps Ethernet @ 328 ft
100Mbps Fast Ethernet @ 328 ft
Manufacturer Website Address www.trendnet.com
Form Factor External
Dimensions 1" Height x 2.3" Width x 3.4" Depth
Compatibility OS Supported: Windows 95/98/Me/NT/2000/XP Macintosh (OS 9.x and higher) Unix Compatibile Printer: Virtually all conventional USB printer
Certifications & Standards USB 1.1 FCC CE VCCI C-Tick and Class B IEEE: IEEE 802.3 10Base-T IEEE 802.3u 100Base-TX ANSI/IEEE 802.3 Auto-Negotiation
Weight 2.7 oz
Product Name TE100-P1U Print Server

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Kindle’s Big Brother Is Coming

Being a technut, I love to see really cool stuff coming out. I have a PDA and it holds my books and I use it when traveling and when I am reading in any low light environment. The back lighting enables reading just about anywhere. If I didn’t already have a PDA, I am sure I would have a Kindle. Now Amazon has brought out the Kindle DX. It is way bigger and I am sure easier to read. If my 401k hadn’t turned into a 201k, I would consider buying it. As gadgets go it is a bit pricy at $489.00 but give it a couple of years and inevitably it will drop in price. Here are the specs. This is not a paid blog but if you buy one by clicking on the link below, I will get a commission. Not enough to buy a Kindle book, let alone a Kindle but every bit helps. Since I use any thing I make on my blogs or Amazon to buy more books, if you buy something from my site, you are supporting Literacy. So Support Literacy!

Kindle DX: Amazon's New Addition To The Kindle Family
Slim: Just over 1/3 of an inch, as thin as most magazines
Carry Your Library: Holds up to 3,500 books, periodicals, and documents
Beautiful Large Display: 9.7" diagonal e-ink screen reads like real paper; boasts 16 shades of gray for clear text and sharp images
Auto-Rotating Screen: Display auto-rotates from portrait to landscape as you turn the device so you can view full-width maps, graphs, tables, and Web pages
Built-In PDF Reader: Native PDF support allows you to carry and read all of your personal and professional documents on the go
Wireless: 3G wireless lets you download books right from your Kindle DX, anytime, anywhere; no monthly fees, no annual contracts, and no hunting for Wi-Fi hotspots
Books In Under 60 Seconds: You get free wireless delivery of books in less than 60 seconds; no PC required
Long Battery Life: Read for days without recharging
Read-to-Me: With the text-to-speech feature, Kindle DX can read newspapers, magazines, blogs, and books out loud to you, unless the book's rights holder made the feature unavailable
Big Selection, Low Prices: Over 275,000 books; New York Times Best Sellers and New Releases are only $9.99, unless marked otherwise
More Than Books: U.S. and international newspapers including the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, magazines including The New Yorker and Time, plus popular blogs, all auto-delivered wirelessly.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I Like To Whine by William G. Bentrim


I know, this is a tech blog and this isn't tech related in any way whatsoever. This is my first book in print so I am shouting from what ever roof top I can find. This is not your normal review since I am totally biased. This is not the first story I have written but it is the first I have gotten into main stream print. It is for sale at Amazon.

I recently read a self described rant in the author discussion area at www.paperbackswap.com This author was miffed because he was expected to appear at a book signing with other authors, some of whom were self published. This particular author felt that only authors who have established a relationship with a “known” publishing house should have the right to consider themselves authors. He worked too hard to be lumped in with a bunch of neophytes.

When I started my computer business in 1981, the local newspaper wrote a nice article on a young entrepreneur and his fledgling business. Later that week there was a letter to the editor demanding to know by what right did I consider myself a computer expert. The letter’s author claimed to have been in computers for years (in 1981?). It was outrageous that the newspaper should provide coverage on a neophyte. When I sold my successful computer business 25 years later, I wondered if the outraged letter writer would question my expertise after 25 years of experience or still feel outrage.

My point is that there are many paths to personal success and what a dismal and boring world it would be if there was only a single path that all must follow. I love the printed word and surround myself with literature of all kinds. I have always wanted to get published and now I have. Perhaps to the disgruntled “real” author I don’t deserve to consider myself an author. Perhaps he should take a look at the title of my book and do a little self evaluation. However when a 7 year old girl came up to me and told me she loved my book I, at that point, considered myself an author.

There are many paths and we each need to choose our own.

My book deals with whining. It suggests some methods that a parent may use to curb that annoying behavior. I would be honored if you purchase it and even more so if it helped a parent to develop a better relationship with their child.


Monday, May 11, 2009

Die Hard Drive, Die!


That mantra isn’t what you normally want to hear about your hard drive. But what about your old hard drive? Do you want your old tax return or that photo of you mooning the opposing football team available for the world to see? Most of us blithely assume that deleting files actually deletes them. Wrong!

Deleting files merely drops the name from the index and the info is there until it is overwritten. Oh, then if I use a software package designed to overwrite all my files then my data is truly erased. Maybe! Why maybe? Commercial software such as Stellar Wipe, Master Shredder, Crisystec Sentry.30, DiskDeleter, Secure Folders XP or PowerWiper may successfully delete your data. Then other commercially available software such as NTFS Formatted Partition Data Recovery, Deleted Windows Partition Data Restore or R-Studio Data Recovery Software may be able to recover it.

It seems like for every tool there is a counter tool. I have used Drive Savers Data Recovery services on hard drives I was sure were toast and they got the data back. I am convinced that if you want to absolutely, positively insure your data on your old hard drive is secure is to destroy it. I mean, physically destroy it. Drill a couple of ½” holes through the platters. Pull the platters out of the drive and cut them in half. Take your drive to a hard drive destroyer service where they provide you with a certificate of destruction. If your data is personal, you probably want to keep it personal, if your data is business; your continued success is dependent on keeping your data secure. Don’t assume your data is safe when you replace computers, insure it is safe by destroying the drive.

Friday, May 8, 2009

MagicJack May Really Be Magic


Sometimes I feel like I live in a cave in spite of the fact that I am online most of my waking hours. I watch TV through HULU on my TV. I email, yadda yadda yadda. So when one of my golfing buddies asked me what did I think of the MagicJack and I had to say, huh? I didn’t have a clue what the MagicJack was and what it did. Needless to say my tech know it all status was jeopardized.

After my embarrassing admittance I came home and Goggeled new phone internet product since my questioner hadn’t remembered the name of the product. MagicJack came up and I went to their site. The product is very impressive, the site not so much. What MagicJack costs to purchase is under FAQs. The price is only $39.95 which is so reasonable, why do they bury it in the FAQs? I found that annoying but I was impressed with the product. So was PC Magazine which gave it the product of the year award.

First you must have broadband to consider MagicJack. Then for $39.95 you get a little piece of hardware the size of a match box or tictac container that plugs into your PC’s USB port. Oh, yeah, you have to have a PC as well as broadband in case that wasn’t self evident. You plug this little USB device into your computer, plug the phone line into the MagicJack and bingo you have phone service after you register it. You have phone service with unlimited calling local and national for $19.95 annually. Huh, $19.95 ANNUALLY! It seems too good to be true but all the review I read stressed amazing voice quality and major bargain basement pricing.

With the economy backing so many of us into a frugal corner, this may be the ticket to saving some serious cash. Basic phone service from Comcast or Verizon is approximately $30.00 per month or $360.00 per year which means MagicJack can save you $340.05 annually. MagicJack is certainly worth considering and with the 30 day free trial they are offering you can keep your current phone provider while you see if MagicJack is really as advertised.

This is not a paid blog but if anybody from MagicJack reads this and wants me to do a real world test and review it, send it to me, I’ll give it a try.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Great Mother’s Day Gift for the Techno Mom


I have been consistently happy with Acer products. This monitor is hard to beat. The Acer X193Wb 19” Wide Screen Monitor would be a great gift for Mom. I find myself watching as much TV on my computer through the Internet as I do through the traditional cable. This monitor makes it easier on the eye and will let you get back from your desk far enough to put up your feet. Not that anybodies Mother would be gauche enough to do that. Buy.com seems to have the best price at $99.00 including shipping. This is not a paid blog.
Tech Specs
Model Number: X193Wb
Part Number: ST.CX3WP.002
UPC: 099802221027
Display Size: 19" Wide, 408 x 255mm
Pixel Pitch: 0.284mm
Color: Black
Max. Resolution & Refresh Rate: 1440 x 900 @ 75Hz
Glare (Y/N): N
Response Time: 5ms
Contrast Ratio: 2000:1 ACM
Brightness: 300 cd/m2
Viewing Angle: 160 (H), 160 (V)
Colors: 16.7 M
Bit: 6 + HiFRC
Color Situation: NTSC%
Pixel Error Standard: B/D:3; D/D:4; Total:5

System Specs
Input Signal: VGA
VESA Wall Mounting: 100 x 100 mm
Speaker: No
Power Supply (100V-240V): Internal
Power Consumption (OFF): <1W
Power Consumption (Stand By): <2W
Power Consumption (ON): <37W

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Allergy Suffers Financial Relief Is A Click Away!


For those of us who find allergies plaguing us year round, let alone you fortunate few who only suffer in the spring or fall there is some relief. No, pollen has not been abandon but I have found a major savings on my allergy meds.

I’m sure any of you who actually pay your own bills have been totally outraged at the price of allergy medication. Even with medical insurance, allergy meds cost bundles of money. Imagine my surprise when I discovered, you can get otc (over the counter) meds from AMAZON. Right, who would have thought to buy their allergy meds from Amazon. I know I didn’t think of it. Ever since Zyrtec went over the counter, I have been using it with great success. (BTW, this is not medical advice and is merely my personal opinion, I have no idea if it will help you.) Anyway, Zyrtec is one of my weapons against sniffling, sneezing, wheezing, coughing, snorting and headaches. When generic Zyrtec (Cetirizine Hydrochloride) became available I shifted over and found no negatives from the generic. Now here is the big deal, at Amazon I found Cetirizine Hydrochloride, 10mg for $18.00 for 350 tablets, the absolute best price I found at the local drug stores was $30.00 for 90 tablets. In fact, the bulk of the Internet drug vendors were substantially more than Amazon. What I got was the exact same generic that my pharmacist gave me. Not some third world knock off but a viable, reputable Canadian pharmaceutical.

You will have to decide yourself if Cetirizine Hydrochloride works with your allergies but I am very happy with how it works and still a bit stunned at how much cheaper I found it at Amazon.


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