Hello members,


Below is your Tico Byte for April. Remember that the meeting was postponed from last Saturday, April 16th , to this coming Saturday, April 23rd, at the same place: Pan American School. This month we will have three classes; two on how to work with pictures and one on advanced email. So come and bring a friend. The meeting starts at 8:30 as usual.


And now on with the news:


Item 1: Microsoft promotes their old operating system, Windows XP.


Microsoft unveiled what it calls a “fresh, imaginative” advertising campaign to attract new users to its three-and-a-half year-old Windows XP operating system on Monday. The 15-month campaign called “Start Something” will be larger and run longer than the company’s campaign that accompanied the original launch of Windows XP in October 2001. The company also hinted that the new campaign will cost about as much its $200-million initial Windows XP launch.


The current Windows promotion comes on the heels of a number of announcements in developing countries such as Brazil and Thailand, mandating the use of open source technology in government contracts. Interestingly, Microsofts campaign is being launched in areas where Windows has not faced strong coordinated, government-inspired challengesAustralia, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.


The whole story here:



Item 2: Racsa and ICE mail


I have received many notices from members with Racsa and ICE addresses that mail is missing or not delivered. Yep. Appears that way. So what's new; you haven't been in the country long enough to know that these things happen? Give it a while and it will come back to normal.


My experience is that when these services make changes within their systems, they encounter a breakdown in their service.


So if you have been having any strange mail problems with these addresses, have patience.


Item 3: Gmail


Looks like about 15 of you have taken my offering of a Gmail account seriously and have signed up. I think you will like their services as time goes on.


One thing you may have noticed is that the actual amount of free storage space that they are giving you is growing every minute. It's pretty neat. They upped their amount to 2 gigabytes of free storage immediately after Yahoo grudgingly matched that of Gmail. But Gmail is on a constant, minute by minute improvement of their storage for you.


And they are offering other services; like free mapping. And try this: scholar.google.com and see what you get. You will be amazed; it's incredible.


Search around on the Google site and see what you find. They are offering more things all the time.


Item 4: Adaware and Spybot


Did you notice that Adaware identifies files within Spybot and removes them? Pretty neat marketing, don't you think? It takes care of the competition.


So, if you are using both anti-spyware programs, be careful what you remove when you hit that delete button.


Item 4: And for you with the fast connections: Skype is in the news


IP telephony firm Skype today claimed that its software has been downloaded by over 100 million computer users. To mark the occasion the company has launched two premium services.

Skype said that 35 million registered users have now used its software to make over seven billion minutes of voice calls. Customers are able to make free phone calls among themselves using voice over IP technology and a standard internet connection.


Whole story here: http://www.vnunet.com/news/1162533


Item 4: Computing is really getting fast, as this article tells


Alienware, Dell and Velocity Micro have started selling desktop PCs and workstations based on Intel's first dual-core processor-based platform. The dual-core processor-based systems are geared for computer hobbyists and entertainment enthusiasts.

"With dual-core processor-based system availability, today is a historic date for the computer industry as PCs begin having 'two brains' instead of one," said Don MacDonald, vice president of Intel's Digital Home Group.

"This milestone has additional significance for Intel given that it's the eve of the 40th anniversary of Moore's Law," MacDonald added. "Moore's Law is about giving you more computing capabilities without an equivalent increase in cost. This is what bringing dual-core processors to PCs is all about."


Whole story: http://www.geekzone.co.nz/content.asp?contentid=4376


Item 5: Was it you who asked about viruses?


The real world should not be known; it's way too scary. But for those of you hearty souls who want to see how many viruses are actually happening these days, you can go here:


and read what happened last month in the world of viruses.


Item 6: On the lighter side, from Chris


My friend is 72 years old and loves to fish.

He was sitting in his boat the other day when he heard a voice say,

"Pick me up."   He looked around and could not see any one.  He thought he was dreaming when he heard the voice again, "Pick me

up."    He looked in the water and there floating on the top was a frog.  My friend said,   "Are you talking to me?"  The frog said,    "Yes, I'm talking to you.  Pick me up and kiss me. I'll turn into the most beautiful woman you

have ever seen  and will give you the most wonderful sexual pleasures that you have

ever dreamed of!"    My Friend looked at the frog for a short time and then reached over

and picked it up carefully, placing it in his shirt front breast

pocket.    Then the frog said, "What are you nuts, didn't you hear what I said?

I said kiss me and I will give you sexual pleasures like you have

never had . He opened his pocket, looked at the frog and said,  "Naah, that's OK ...at my age,   I'd rather have a talking frog!"


Item 7: And all you smiling Mac users


Looks like Mac OS X v10.3 "Panther" is getting one more small tweak before Mac OS X v10.4 "Tiger" hits store shelves on April 29, 2005. On Friday Apple released Mac OS X v10.3.9, an update that "delivers overall improved compatibility and reliability" for all users. It's available for download through the Software Update system preferences pane and is also available for download from Apple's Web site. Mac OS X v10.3.9 offers a long list of improvements and enhancements, including changes to Stickies, Safari, Finder and more.




Item 8: Finally, from Cicero


"I prefer tongue-tied knowledge to ignorant loquacity."



See you all at the meeting on Saturday.