Monday, August 29, 2005

LaCie silverscreen

My mate just bought one of these hard drive movie players and he is raving about it.
Plug into your computer via USB, dopwnload movie files onto it and then plug it into your TV using the normal video and audio RCA plugs. Use the remote to navigate the simple menu on screen and play the movie - yeah play the movie!

Benefits include:
* Play back movies, music and photos on any TV
* Hi-Speed USB powered to store, backup and archive data
* Portable entertainment center for family, friends, or traveling
* Easy on-TV-screen navigation with user-friendly remote control
* Ultra-quiet, pocket-sized, light-weight and slim design
* Comes in 40Gb and 80Gb sizes

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Link Checking

Get your website checked for broken internal and external links for free by seven twenty four
This is a free service designed to sell you their additional optimisation and other products. However as a free trial it is pretty good and returns full broken link reports as well as ranking reports from popular search engines. Beats doing it yourself!
Simply type in the web url you want checked.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Core Ftp

Core FTP is a free FTP client - this is a good one!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Server Woes

I had a server crash on Monday, 2 hours before 20 people came for dinner. A power surge damaged the UPS and two of the three hard drives in the machine.
Fortunately I have a spare server and 6 hours hours later we were back on line. However the hard drives were damged beyond repair with a lot of disk errors. We did manage to get some data off them.
I purchased a new server and it has some pretty awesome technology in it. I puchased an Athlon S939 AMD 3200 chip and a Asus A8N SLI Premium motherboard. This has a heat pipe to suck the heat away from the CPU. It also supports twin SLI Video cards though I didn't need these for a Linux Server. It also came with a expansion slot external S-ATA drive connector.
Roh installed Cent OS on it.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Copernic Desktop Search 2

It took close to two days to fully index 45Gb data.
However it was worth it. Searching for a word or a phrase is almost instantaneous - considering most of that data is on a network. It returns results of emails, contacts, music,pictures, files, pdf, txt, xml, html, excel, word etc, bookmarks, browser history and videos.
I think I will try WDM just to see what its like.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Desktop Search

I am trialling Copernic Desktop Search at the moment. It is taking forever to index - in fact I had to tell it to ignore my computer and index anyway. I did this by changing the index options to index even if my pc was busy and with high priority. I though it was never going to finish oherwise.

It did index the emails flat out - in fact the search there is probably better than Lookout - the Outlook Search Tool I have been using for while now. I will reserve my final judgement on whether it can satisfactorily index the 45.85 Gb of data on my server.

The other desktop search tools out there include Google Desktop Search, Windows Desktop Search and Blinkx3. Google I was unhappy with due to its irrelevant results. I have yet to try Blinkx or WDS; magazine reviews I have read don't point to them being the best solution for my needs. What do you use?

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Zotob Worm

Adobe has discovered a buffer overflow that if successfully exploited could crash the application with an increased risk of arbitrary code execution. The vulnerability is in a core Adobe Acrobat and Adobe Reader application plug-in. If the malicious file is loaded, it could exploit the buffer overflow. An update is available to mitigate potential malicious activity. This vulnerability (identifier CVE-2005-2470) affects the following platforms: Windows, Mac OS, Linux and Solaris and the following releases: Adobe Reader 5.1, 6.0-6.0.3, 7.0-7.0.2 and Adobe Acrobat 5.0-5.0.5, 6.0-6.0.3.

We recommend upgrading to the most current version of Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat and installing the available updates from Adobe. More information is available for each product from Adobe at

Additionally I ran Windows update on all my machines, first installing the new version Microsoft Update, and then ensuring all priority updates were installed.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Another browser to test for?

I just upgraded AIM to version 5.9.3861 and received the following option:

AOL Explorer - The next generation in Internet browsing helps stop spyware, block pop-ups, save time with tabbed browsing and thumbnail navigation so that you can enjoy a more secure and convenient web surfing and AIM Today experience.

I did not install it on this machine so I cannot evaluate AOL Explorer yet but you can bet it will be on my development workstation!

PCMag covers the review. may find yourself tempted to adopt AOL Explorer. It's prettier than Microsoft Internet Explorer, easier to use than Firefox, and cheaper than Opera.

On the negative side of things it looks like us web developer types are going to have yet another brower to support and test for compliance. Or not! requires Internet Explorer 6, the core beneath the glam front end...

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Free Wi-Fi? Get Ready for GoogleNet.

I read the article completely and could not come up with a more elegant summary than Ray Kurzweil.

Business 2.0, September 2005

A trail of hidden clues suggests Google is building its own Internet using WiFi blanketing major cities and might be looking to let everyone connect for free.

Creating Photoshop Textures

Mat Bastian explains a metal texture
Colin Smith does wood grain

Monday, August 15, 2005

CD Burning Information is one of the oldest web sites in the so called CD/DVD scene, which has now been renamed and rebuilt from scratch. The history of this website goes back to 1997, and it was previously well known as the CD-RW.ORG.

A newly re-constructed site contains a forum, reviews on CD burning software, hardware and media and other helpful information and web links. One to bookmark and come back to as they add more content.

Freeze your dead Hard Drive!

Not recommended - especially with modern drives that aren't completely sealed.

This bloke froze his dead hard drive and then was able to reboot it and get data off it.

Blingo has a blog! And gives prizes in addtion to Google search results

I don't think I've made a big enough deal about Blingo. I now use Blingo 80% of the time reserving my trips to Google for speciality things like money conversions.

Blingo now has a blog. What is Blingo? Blingo is a search engine that returns the exact same results as Google (since it is powered by Google) but gives out prizes (currently limited to the United States, I think).

You don't need to sign up to search. But if you sign up as a Blingo Friend when you win, so does your friend!

Spy Journal Tech Tips alerted on Blingo in December of 2004.


(reprinted from Spy Journal Blog Tips)

HD WMV Movies

Microsoft has created a bunch of HD WMV Movies and made them available for download
Windows Media Audio and Video 9 Series is a breakthrough set of codecs that enables multichannel audio and high definition (HD) video at resolutions up to 1080p. See high definition in action for yourself with these downloads. To deliver ultra-high quality, these clips were encoded at 24 frames per second (fps), and at the resolutions noted of either 1280 x 720 (720p) or 1920 x 1080 (1080p). (Resolutions vary per clip.)
Broadband needed and it would pay to have a graphics card capable of supporting a resolution of 1920 x 1440 for the good ones. They look fantastic and there's lots of IMAX movies there - great for the kids!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Heavens Above

Heavens-Above is an awesome website.
Check out the height and current location of the International Space Station, the planets and stars and other spacecraft and satellites.
Current viewing maps from your location and more.
Awesome educational website that explains the astronomy as you look at it.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Minimize Mozilla Applications to Tray

If you are a Mozilla user (products such as FireFox for web browsing and Thunderbird for email) then you need to know about MinimizeToTray "A powerful extension to minimize Windows versions of Firefox, Thunderbird, Mozilla Suite, and Nvu to the system tray."

Tray menus via right mouse click. MinimizeToTray provides quick access to many of Firefox and Thunderbird's most used features. For Firefox, easily view your Downloads or open a new browser window. For Thunderbird, compose new messages and view your Address Book while keeping it minimized all day to check for new mail. Quick and flexible minimizing options. Turbo option for Firefox and Thunderbird.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Testing Web Standards

Want to know if your browser of choice lives up to web standards? Take the acid test! Dan Greene, the Library Monk, explains that "Basically if your browser can display this page as a smiley face, it has good standards support."

Adsense Now Adjusts Number of Ads

Google's Adsense now automatically adjusts the number of text adds it presents on your website to optimize for maximum monetization.

Google AdSense technology will automatically determine the optimal number of ads to display on any page and will only show fewer ads when doing so will make you more money!

Monday, August 08, 2005


Check out the geobloggers website - its a beta for firefox that uses Google Maps and allows users to add flikr photos to points of interest.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Microsoft Answers Google's Start Page with

Google is famous for its overly simplist home page. Where most portals try to cram as much information and advertising even diguising advertising as information onto your browsers viewport as possible, Google has traditionally shown almost nothing. A while back Google Labs introduced a customized home page ( ) that brought some localized, personalized information to the user that wants their browser to open to Google but provide a little content.

Now Microsoft has answered Google and is experiementing with it's own version with MSN Search as the focus. Now how similar is to Google's concept! Of course, just as Google has a blog, so must have a blog.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Popups in Firefox?!

If you have noticed that you are getting popup windows while using Firefox and its exceptional popup blocker then you may need to read (insert cool name here)'s post. She refers us to who explains the reason and how to fix it.

...some clever people figured out that you could launch popups from Flash, getting around the Firefox default settings

Konfabulator Aquired by Yahoo!

What is Konfabulator? One, it's now free! If I have this right, Konfabulator (which will be known as Yahoo! Widgets) allows you to add objects (widgets) to your computer desktop that have nothing to do with a browser. They still pull information from the web the way a browser does but it allows the user to customize the presentation of that information which means you could write your own interface.

Imagine the stock market or weather is important to you. You don't want to open Internet Explorer or Firefox everytime you check the information. With Konfabulator aka Yahoo! Widgets you simply have a Widget sitting on your screen that keeps the information just a glance away. You can write your own or download one from the Widget Gallery (which is down at the time of this post..hopefully that's a temporary screwup relating to the transition to Yahoo).

Congratulations to the Konfabulator team on their success!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

CD Autorun software

Free downloads of numerous titles.
CD Autorun Creator ($38)

419 scam letters

Today I got a sick one working off the sorrow of the recent air crash in Germany. I manage my brothers yahoo account for him as his internet connection in Ukraine is crap to say the least. Unfortunately that means the spam mail that Outlook doesn't filter gets through to me.

So I replied using the yahoo account.

Note: if you go to the website link he provided about the crash you will find Andrew has distorted the facts slighly in relation to the death of Christian Eich, 57, an engineer who ran carmaker BMW's museum, his wife and two children and his wife's parents were also among the victims.

Here is the letter I got.
From: Andrew Cliff esq.
Cliff & Associates
For your kind attention;

Greeting to you.

The inspiration to contact you is simply divine providence,I am making this proposition because I have to seek the partnership of a resourceful person to help me realise this project.

I am Andrew Cliff esq. a solicitor and investment consultant based in london,united kindom.I was attending a business luncheon in berlin,germany and I got introduced to the renowned german businessman and property mogul,Mr Andreas Scharanner(of blessed memory).

He engaged my services as attorney and investment consultant and my primary assignment was to spearhead his investment forays in the united kingdom.three months later I invited him to london and under my professional guidance and based on my advice he made a fixed deposit of 15,000,000,00 million pounds sterling at a financial institution.
This deposit was for 12 months and upon maturity I made effort to contact my client ,I could not reach him or any member of his family.I was forced to travel to germany and there I got the tragic news that on july 25 2000, my client Mr Andreas Schranner,his wife Maria,their daughter Eich and husband christian and two children perished in the air france concorde newyork bound flight;please click here

I have made efforts to locate any member of his family with strong biological links to my late client without success.The search to find a close relation is one that has consumed time and resources.the insitution is asking me to either present a next of kin to late Andreas Schranner or forfiet the depsosit. my proposal is to package , present you as next of kin to late Andreas Schranner and process the fixed deposit and transfer custody to you for our mutual benefit.

My capacity as solicitor/investment consultant to my late client gives me the discretion to package and transfer the deposit to you.
I will give you 30% for your effort,60% for me and 10% for Charity and Tsunami will amount to injustice if i do not take this decisive step to secure this deposit,and invest it. The late Schranner was also a friend in addition to our business relationship.

I will wait for your reaction and response and then together we can jumpstart this project and nurture it to reality.
Your swift response is anticipated.

Andrew Cliff esq.
Alternative email address:

Here is my reply
Hi Andrew - its lucky you found me
I was related distantly through my mothers side and though I had only met him once have very fond memories of him.
I was wondering if you could help me with a tricky situation, see I am a little short of funds right now. If you only could advance me the funds to fly to the funeral and of course to meet you and sport the tedious legalities out then I would only be too willing to repay you back threefold

Yours faithfully
The Marquis of Kent - disinherited and broke and living in a bedsit in East London

Lets see if Andrew will make me good on a flight to Germany!

MS Windows Vista

Yes I know that Vista was anounced ages ago as the new name for Longwait - I mean Longhorn.
This is just a link to the MS page for all the tech info about deployment, hardware requirements etc.
Seems Vista uses a disk imaging system to deploy.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Firefox 1.0.6

Firefox 1.0.6 is a stability update. We recommend that users upgrade to this latest version.

Here's what's new in Firefox 1.0.6:

* Restore API compatibility for extensions and web applications that did not work in Firefox 1.0.5.

Here's what's new in Firefox 1.0.5:

* Several security fixes.
* Improvements to stability.

SBS blog

Sean Daniels writes a great SBS blog
Help yourself!