Archive for the ‘Tech Education’ category

Is Your Computer Vista Ready???

November 17, 2006

vista.pngJanuary 30, 2007 is the consumer launch date of Windows Vista. Is your computer Vista ready? To make sure that you get the most out of Windows Vista, you should make sure that your computer is Vista Premium Ready. If you plan on buying a computer for Vista either now or after the release make sure that the computer is Vista Premium Ready and not just Vista compatible. Qualifying for Vista Compatible is to run just Windows Vista Home Basic which doesn’t include the new Aero Glass features which is one of the key new technologies. See Microsoft’s Windows Vista Get Ready web site for more info.

A Windows Vista Premium Ready PC includes at least:

  1. 1 GHz 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
  2. 1 GB of system memory.
  3. Support for DirectX 9 graphics with a WDDM driver, 128 MB of graphics memory (minimum)
  4. Pixel Shader 2.0 and 32 bits per pixel.
  5. 40 GB of hard drive capacity with 15 GB free space.
  6. DVD-ROM Drive
  7. Audio output capability.
  8. Internet access capability.



Laptop Security

August 11, 2006

I’m sure you recently have read about 2 laptops that were stolen from the Veterans’ Administration and laptops stolen from other companies.  Additionally, I’m sure you read about the recent scare of terrorists wanting to take over planes that was stopped in England and England is banning laptops as carry-ons among other items.  What does all of this mean?  You need to add some sort of security to your laptop to protect your data.  The first and easiest way is to backup your data.  Another way is to leave your laptop behind and store your data on a CD, DVD, or USB Flash drive and carry these to your destination when traveling.  A third security measure, might be to add tracking software for your laptop.  Two recent programs have come to my attention in this regard.  The first is called LoJack for Laptops and is made by Absolute Software and costs $49.99 a year.  For more information about this product click here.  The other tracking software that came to my attention is CyberAngel Security Software by CyberAngel Security Systems.  This will cost you $59.95 a year or $149.90 for the life of your computer.  For more information about this product click here.  The bottom line is that you need to protect not only your data, but the laptop itself.

LCD Versus Plasma TV Debate

August 7, 2006

With the Feb. 17, 2009 deadline closing in and technology continuing to move forward, which Flat Panel TV is better?  I ran across several articles on the web in the LCD versus Plasma debate.  The first is from Wired News and you can read the article here.  The second is a tutorial on LCDs Versus Plasma from the Flat TV People, click here.  The third article is from The Sydney Morning Hearld, click here to read this review.  What is LCD TV?  Liquid crystal display television (LCD TV) is a television using LCD technology for its visual output. This technology is generally TFT. It is contrasted to alternate visual output technologies, such as cathode ray (CRT) or plasma display (PDP TV).  For more info click hereWhat is Plasma TV?  A plasma display panel (PDP) is an emissive flat panel display where light is created by phosphors excited by a plasma discharge between two flat panels of glass. The gas discharge contains no mercury (contrary to the backlights of an AMLCD). An inert mixture of noble gases (neon and xenon) is used instead.  For more info, click here.

What Is HDTV And Why Is It Important To Consider Switching Soon?

August 7, 2006

What is HDTV?  According to Wikipedia, “High-Definition television (HDTV) refers to the broadcasting of television signals with a higher resolution than traditional formats (NTSC, SECAM, PAL) allow. Except for early analog formats in Europe and Japan, HDTV is broadcast digitally, and therefore its introduction sometimes coincides with the introduction of digital television (DTV): this technology was first introduced in the USA during the 1990s, by the Digital HDTV Grand Alliance (grouping together AT&T, General Instrument, MIT, Philips, Sarnoff, Thomson, and Zenith)  HDTV is defined as 1080 active interlaced lines, or 720 progressive lines. 16 : 9 aspect ratio in ITU-R BT.709. The term ‘high-definition’ can refer to the resolution specifications themselves, or to media capable of similar sharpness such as movie film.”  Why is it important to consider switching soon? If you’re the owner of one of the 80 million non-cable, non-digital TV sets in the U.S., you’re running out of time as Congress has now passed legislation requiring all conventional “analog” TV broadcasting to stop on February 17, 2009.

Trojan Installs Self as a Firefox Extension

July 26, 2006

According to an article from ZDNet, “A new Trojan horse making the rounds has been installing itself as a Firefox extension, according to security company McAfee. The FormSpy Trojan attacks computers that have already been infected with the Downloader-AXM Trojan, according to a security advisory McAfee issued Tuesday. Once FormSpy is executed, it installs itself as a component of the Firefox Web browser.  To see the whole article, click here.  To learn what a Trojan horse is, click here.

What is Web 2.0?

July 25, 2006

The term Web 2.0 refers to a second generation of services available on the World Wide Web that lets people collaborate and share information online. In contrast to the first generation, Web 2.0 gives users an experience closer to desktop applications than the traditional static Web pages.  Many find it easiest to define Web 2.0 by associating it with companies or products that embody its principles. Some of the more well known Web 2.0 entities are Google Maps, Flickr,, digg,, and Technorati.  Many recently-developed concepts and technologies are seen as contributing to Web 2.0, including weblogs, linklogs, wikis, podcasts, RSS feeds and other forms of many to many publishing; social software, web APIs, web standards, online web services, and others.  For more information on what Web 2.0 is click here