Worth reading this morning
This OP Ed piece in today’s New York Times, Behind the Rise of Google Lies the Rise in Internet Credibility makes the point, “The Web has moved from the periphery of a good researcher’s awareness in 1998 to the very center of it in 2004. “ This is a short read and in my opinion well-worth your time because it may help expand your thinking about how to use Google productively in your own experience of the Internet. Another point this article makes is that the rise of Google makes portal services, like AOL or Yahoo, much less relevant or necessary.
Useful Resources about Windows XP
The other night my friend Paul asked “What is Virtual Memory?” because he had begun to receive messages from his system that his Virtual Memory was low. As I researched the question for him, I came across this article by Alex Nichol, an MS-MVP, Virtual Memory in Windows XP, and I forwarded him the link so that he could understand what it is and what he might do about his issue. However, that search prompted me to do some further exploring of the links in that article, which lead me to some really useful articles that I though you too might find useful.
In addition, I went to the Microsoft web site and found this page of videos that explain, briefly, how to do a variety of things related to XP.
My new-found interest in XP results from the fact that I’ve finally gotten a copy Windows XP Pro and Office XP to which I’ll soon be converting my system, and I wanted to research thoroughly how best to make the transition. Like a lot of people, I have a number of things on my current system that I want to migrate over to the new XP version, if possible, without having to reinstall all of them. So such a move takes a lot of planning.
I also bought myself a new Maxtor 160 GB hard disk (thanks to the Best Buy gift certificates my children had given me for my birthday and Christmas) that I plan to install before the move. That new hard disk plus the 40 GB hard disk already on the computer will give me 200 GB of storage that I’m hopeful will last me for at least a couple of years before a new computer with updated features is required.
Backing up your data with Windows XP
This morning I ran across The Elder Geek while searching the net. It looks like a real find, a resource well worth bookmarking. In particular, I found the following link of interest because my buddy, Paul, has been struggling to find a reliable and satisfactory solution for backing up his data for quite some time.
Here’s the link and the quote …
Protecting The Windows XP System and Data: “While it isn’t absolutely essential to have a utility specifically designed for backing up a computer system it can make life easier. Both Windows XP Home and Professional come with what Microsoft calls the Backup and Restore Utility, better known as NTBackup. Unfortunately for Home users, Backup and Restore is not installed by default nor is it as fully functional as the version installed by default in XP Professional. Supposedly, the reason it’s not installed by default in Home is because Home does not support Automated System Recovery (ASR) that is a part of Backup and Restore. This in no way prevents you from making a full backup in Home Edition, but it does limit the recovery or restore options. Bottom line; if you have Pro you’re ready to go. If you have Home, follow the directions below:
To Manually Install the Backup Utility in Windows XP Home Edition
- Insert the CD Rom and navigate to CD-ROM Drive:VALUEADDMSFTNTBACKUP
- Double-click the Ntbackup.msi file to start the wizard that installs Backup
- When the wizard is complete, click Finish.”
My, My how Google has changed things!
In this article, Search For Tomorrow from the Washington Post, Joel Achenbach observes: “Only now in the bright light of the Google Era do we see how dim and gloomy was our pregooglian world.” My friend Paul Moor pointed this article out to me yesterday, and I found it fascinating. It’s hard to disagree with anything Mr. Achenbach says about Google. I find it positively indespensible almost every day. For instance, yesterday when replying to an email from Phil Petty, I wanted to refer to Michael Dukakis’s running mate and I couldn’t recall his name (it was Lloyd Bentsen), so I just typed “Dukakis” and had my answer in no time.
And while I’m mentioning my friend Paul as I was a moment ago, here’s a link to an article (in English) on a German website about his recent honor from the German government.
Another warning from Microsoft
Although it’s getting to be routine, Microsoft has once again said in this article: “people who use its operating system software must patch their computers yet again, or their PC’s will be vulnerable to attacks that could cede control to hackers.” They call the flaw “critical” which is the highest level of vulnerability. I guess it’s time to drift on over to their Web site and grab the patch.
Any time you are planning to make a change to your computer such as this or when installing some new piece of software, it’s a good idea to set a System Restore point. This article explains a bit more about that process, but the gist of it is the same as the lesson learned by Hansel and Gretel, “you need to make sure you can get back out when you go into the unknown.” There are a number of other links at that location that can help you learn more about the system restore utility, if you aren’t familiar with it already.
HTML for Phil
This entry is prompted by my friend Phil’s phonecall last night. He wanted to know how I was able to cause any word to become a link to some web site. That gave me the idea to give him a poor man’s explanation of HTML tags here in this brief article, even though I have already suggested that if he’d just put HTML or “HTML tags” into the Google search engine, he’d get thousands of links to many well-thought-out tutorials on HTML as a result.
Since this discussion has been done more effectively than I can do it, let me point you to this link that illustrates how a URL is embedded in a clickable hyperlink using HTML. You can even experimentally change the text in the link and see the results in the window at the right of it. This particular example is only a small part of the tutorial provided by the W3Schools. Anyone who is interested can find training there on almost any aspect of creating web pages.
My time is running out for posting this morning, so I’ll let this do for now. If you, Phil, or anyone else has observations or questions, let me suggest you use the comment facility below to pose them and I’ll try to respond to them when time permits. Hope this helps.
A productive weekend
As I prepare to return to work today, I look back at the short visit Jeff, Dustin and Carole made to Knoxville over the weekend with great satisfaction and a lot of gratitude. They all chipped in willingly and joined Mike in getting my house prepared for the new carpeting that is coming later this Spring. The house, that looks and sounds bare now because the floors are down to the wood and they echo when you walk on them, seems bigger because furniture that was stuffed into a few rooms is more evenly distributed throughout the house. And my spare bedroom in the basement is taking shape as an office. There’s still a lot to do as this Spring rennovation progresses, but it was a satisfying weekend to see us get this far.
I am a very lucky man that my two sons and their wives and my ex-wife and my grandchildren give of themselves so generously and without any apparent reluctance to help me improve my house. Although this kind of activity could be done alone, it would not have been. Some tasks are just too big to tackle without a companion. And no task is too big, if you have the support and willing backing of your family. Publically, I want to thank each of you for your help. I not only couldn’t but I wouldn’t have even undertaken the task without you; it would have been simply too overwhelming. And honestly even with your help it is still a bit overwhelming.
Love isn’t about saying “three little words”; it’s about the things you do for the ones you love.