Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Life in the slow lane

It is a summer Friday, and I’m putt-putt-ing along in ssllooww-motion. It is terribly nice to take a vacation once in a while. I hope you all have had some time off, to enjoy the longer days and warmer weather, too.

* I have had several clients call me recently after suddenly being no longer able to log in to their email accounts, or had received emails from friends saying, “Hey! Quit spamming me!“. In each case, a spammer had “hijacked” their email accounts. Affected were Yahoo! Mail, AOL, and Earthlink. (Yes, I have clients still using AOL..) All of those clients use AT&T as their ISP..
And AT&T uses Yahoo! Mail (and owns Earthlink)..
And Yahoo! has had several major “hacks” of the user database(s).

IT_trafficIn the cases where they just suddenly could no longer log in, the service provider had shut down the account to stop the spamming, they (my clients) had to contact the service provider’s tech support, prove they were really themselves, and have their passwords reset. In the other cases, they had to log in and change their passwords to lock the spammer out.

Hacker spammers. A few bad apples really do spoil the whole barrel. It’s past time we put some teeth into CAN-SPAM, and made it international. Dontcha think? Day before yesterday, a woman told me she’s reverted to snail mail and the telephone. Doesn’t trust email anymore. Wonder how many others…?

* Changes are in the wind:

Do you remember Rehteah Parsons? Seems they changed a law.. Arrests made in Nova Scotia assault, cyberbullying leading to suicide

Two were arrested Thursday in the case of Rehteah Parsons, 17, a Nova Scotia girl who took her own life after a sexual assault and cyberbullying, police said.”  Read more..

Snowden’s privacy-oriented email provider shuts down under U.S. government pressure

An American company that specialized in highly encrypted email suspended operations today. The abrupt shutdown of Lavabit, a small Texas-based company, is suspected to be related to a court order related to its best-known customer, NSA leaker Edward Snowden.Read more..

White House Proposes Cybersecurity Insurance, Other Incentives For Executive Order

Goal is to provide financial and other perks for participation in voluntary cybersecurity framework.Read more..

How ’bout some Friday Fun Video action.. a little “slower” than my usual..

Today’s quote:I’m in a hurry to get things done
Oh I rush and rush until life’s no fun
All I’ve really gotta do is live and die
But I’m in a hurry and don’t know why….
~ Roger Murrah and Randy VanWarmer

Copyright 2007-2013 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

August 9, 2013 Posted by | computers | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Friday Fun Videos (of the High Flying Sort)

Folks, wanna have some fun?

Okay, then! Let’s start. This first one is quite short. First, click here. Then toggle the viewer to Full screen mode. Then click Play ” >”.

Insane, eh?

Now, ole Tech Paul loves airplanes. And loves fun. But I would want no part of that!

Here’s some more things that go fast..

Okay, so some of that was a little.. um.. not-so-fun.. let me try again..

Yeah. OK. So that stuff is not for everybody. So for the rest of you, here’s your FFV.

Yay! The weekend is almost here.

And how about some tech? AT&T buys Verizon Wireless spectrum for $1.9bn

AT&T has agreed to acquire airwaves from Verizon Wireless, the U.S.’ largest cellular network by subscribers, for $1.9 billion, the company said today.Read more..

Today’s quote:I told the doctor I broke my leg in two places. He told me to quit going to those places.” ~ Henny Youngman

ATTN: Do you have the IP of ? If you are not a spammer, you’re infected (actually, “botted“). And your machine is spamming blogs with bogus comments, and probably doing other nasty things as well.

(Don’t know what your IP address is? Click here.)

Copyright 2007-2013 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<

All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

January 25, 2013 Posted by | digital Video, mobile, News, tech | , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Feels Like Monday | AT&T, T-Mobile Merger Off (News)

I hope everyone had a stellar holiday weekend.

I found the time this weekend to watch the headlines come in, look at some of the (tech) sale prices, and think about where this is all going — how things are changing. And, yes. They are changing.

One thing, I looked through the notes I keep on my repair workbench, and I compared this past week with the same week last year, and it became clear(er) to me that I am seeing a distinct decline in the number of severe malware infections in my shop. Largely, this is due not to people being less prone to fall for a rogue antivirus pop-open, (see Internet Plague – Rogue Antivirus) I don’t think, but because less people are on Windows XP now (at least in my area of the world).

The changes Microsoft made – starting with Vista (such as the UAC, DEP, and Random Memory Allocation) – and the switch to 64 bit, have – it seems – had a positive impact. Early last year I finally wrote a piece saying something I had been thinking for a while: It is time to face facts and finally dump Windows XP. (I remind you that in tech, a year is equivalent to 7 human years.) I have no doubt that you would be safer from viruses, cybercrime, and Identity Theft on a new Win7 machine than an old XP unit.

*     *     *

The headlines tell us that “the PC is dead” – that now all you need is a tablet. (Example: this landed in my Inbox not more than 5 minutes ago. Great Debate: Can PC makers survive in a post PC world?) I don’t recommend that you believe it, though.

*     *     *

Aside from switching from Desktops to ‘viewing tablets’, computing is “moving into the cloud“.. and so I see headlines like: Revealed: The jobs that will be wiped out by cloud computingAs businesses switch to cloud computing demand for some traditional IT roles will plummet“. (Don’t worry India and the Philippines. I think we’ll still keep shipping jobs to you for a while yet.) And yes. Some people are even beginning to question if cloud computing is secure… or can be secured..
* Gartner: Seven cloud-computing security risks Cloud computing is fraught with security risks, according to analyst firm Gartner.
* Cloud Computing: Secure or a Security Risk? …
In a few years, no-one will consider how secure cloud computing is because there will be few alternatives.

But the only thing certain about the future of tech – in my mind – is that it is uncertain. And that it is not going to stand still, but continue to change and evolve, exponentially. How? Well.. this might tell us a little: 10 wild new patents: The future of tech?USPTO has been granting lots of new patents, some with a surprisingly quick turnaround. Here are drawings of 10 noteworthy patents issued to top tech players last week.” View on site.
And you can see the new products from this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (aka “CES”) which took place a little while ago.

And things continue to obey Moore’s Law in other ways too; namely, prices continue to decline. Tablets are no longer 1st Generation and $800, so if you have been thinking about getting one, but haven’t yet.. maybe now is the time? And if your Desktop unit is Windows XP.. you don’t need to wait for Windows 8 (I wouldn’t).. the time for a new unit is quite overdue. This article may help.. What to Look for When Buying a New Computer

I was going to write about the ridiculous world of SEO gamesmanship, but that will have to wait for another day. As will software piracy. (Are you aware that there are *people* who – for a fee – will write [phony] good reviews about your product/service.. and/or [phony] bad reviews [slams, even] about your competitors? And that Google’s ranking counts those the same as real reviews? Crazy!)

18 spam comments were posted to this blog – by infected machines (aka “bots”) – in the short time it took to write this..
The more things change.. the more they stay the same, eh?

News item: I just got a text on my T-Mobile phone saying the ATT merger is off. (Says to see,

Today’s quote: ““Believe only half of what you see and nothing that you hear.” ~ Edgar Allan Poe

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<

All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

May 29, 2012 Posted by | computers, News, tech | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Working With Text From Web Sites*

(And Some Giveaways)

Today’s quick tip was inspired by a reader question. The gentleman used to use an old technique to “print” webpages to text files so that he could edit and incorporate the text into his documents, and he wanted to know if he could still do this, but in a more modern way.
(I would like to take a moment here to remind my readers that I do answer questions sent to me; and also that if I believe the question-and-answer will benefit “everyone”, you could very well see it posted here.)

Q: How do I copy the text on a webpage to my document?
A: There actually are a couple of different ways to do this, including the old “print-to-file” method that DOS users remember. The trick is to get just the text and information you want, and not all the advertising and hyperlinks and graphics/logos that most webpages incorporate.

Method 1: If all you need is a small portion of text from a webpage, the easiest way to get it from your browser to your word processor is to use your mouse to ‘highlight’ the sentence (or paragraph) on the webpage, press Ctrl+C to Copy, click on the place in your document that you’d like to insert the text and press Ctrl+V to Paste the selection into your document (you may have to change the font and text size to match the rest of your document’s format).

Sometimes, it can be a little tricky — working in the browser — getting your cursor to change from an arrow (navigation) to the vertical bar and selecting the page’s text. But rest assured that you can ‘select’ the text on a webpage. Usually you have to get the point of the arrow very close the edge of the first letter, and make small, gentle mouse movements until the cursor changes. You could also try clicking in an easier part of the text, and use your arrow keys to move the cursor to where you want it.
(As a writer, I simply must express my hope that you will pay some mind to the concept of Copyrights, and original work, and properly attribute your “borrowed” material.)

Method 2: But if you want all the information on the webpage, and you want it to be available as a file you can reference at your leisure, the Copy>Paste method is not the best and another technique will serve you better.
Some people prefer to download the webpages in a method called “Offline webpages”, which is a whole ‘nother topic. Offline gives you the whole webpage — logos/graphics, links, ads — as if you were connected to the Internet, and this is more info than we need for today’s topic… we just want the text.

In Firefox and Internet Explorer, you can click on the “File” menu on your browser’s toolbar. IE users (who haven’t re-enabled the old Menu bar) should click on the “Page” button. Whichever manner you used, now click on “Save As”.

Now the Save As window will open, and here is where we will make our important decisions.

As usual, you will be presented with the ability to select the “where” the file will be Saved, and give it a name. But the primary thing is to select the “Save as type”, so that we will have a file we can use as we want to– in this case, a text file (.txt).
Once the webpage is Saved as a text file, you will be able to Open it with any word processor. And you will be able to edit it to your heart’s content.. and it will be available whenever you need it.

*If you decide to Save the webpage as one of the other options in the “file type” (or, made a mistake here) selection, and Save the page as an *.htm,*html file or even a “archive”, you will still be able to Open it with a word processor [by default, it will open with your browser] and edit it… it will just contain a whole bunch of junk-looking code, as well as the text you want.

Today’s free download: I am not a real big fan of free all-in-one “optimization” programs, but I do have one that I like, use (occasionally), and can recommend. Advanced WindowsCare Personal From publisher: “is a comprehensive PC care utility that takes an one-click approach to help protect, repair and optimize your computer. It provides an all-in-one and super convenient solution for PC maintenance and protection.”

* Orig post: 11/30/07

Today’s reading reco: How the iPhone crippled T-Mobile

Even if the feds prevent AT&T’s takeover, T-Mobile is still dying — and the iPhone is a big reason why” Read more..

Today’s quotable quote:A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.” ~ Herm Albright

Bonus For Reading All The Way Down To Here

• For a limited time, Digiarty Software, Inc is giving away free copies of WinX Blu-ray Decrypter ($50 retail.)

“WinX Blu-ray Decrypter is able to decrypt any Blu-ray video disc, even encrypted with recent AACS MKB v25, BD+ and BD-Live, etc., and transform 3D Blu-ray to 2D video. It comes with 2 copy methods – Full Disc Backup and Main Title copy modes. You can get decrypted Blu-ray folder or HD M2TS videos on the hard drive.” Read more.. (get your copy)

• For a limited time, BDlot is giving away, free, All-in-one BDlot Video Media Suite Giveaway

Competently make all your SD/HD videos playable everywhere

Make your DIY movie/music from YouTube with one-click

Create DVDs from Camcorder, Portable Gadgets or any video clips

(You need to scroll down a bit.) Read more.. (get your copy)

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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September 8, 2011 Posted by | advice, computers, free software, how to, Internet, iPhone | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment