Tico Byte, Aug. 15, 2005

 

Dear members,

 

Here is your Tico Byte for August. I hope you will remember the meeting is next Saturday, at 8:30AM, at the Pan American School in Belen. Bring a friend to share the fun with. This time we will have instruction on the Windows Operating System, demonstrations on the capabilities of Microsoft Publisher, explanation of various useful programs, announcement of a new digital art users group, the usual free hardware clinics, increased personal sharing time between members, a demonstration of the new digital art tablet and much more. Lots to do and share.

 

And now:

 

Item 1: Haven’t we all felt that we were jinxed on computer at some point?

 

But the Princeton boffins say there is a clear statistical reality to what help desk operator have been saying for years – some computer users are just plain jinxed.

 

Full article at: http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=25219

 

Item 2: New computer – old hard drive?

 

Can I go to a new PC and use my old hard drive?  Fred Langa tells us here:

http://langa.com/newsletters/2005/2005-05-30.htm#1

 

Item 3: Great site

 

There’s a great site for lots of windows stuff; one of which is security tools.

 

Try the site of Security: http://lists.gpick.com/pages/Security_Tools.htm

 

Or just go to the site and find more information than you can handle. Most of it is either freeware or shareware.

 

http://lists.gpick.com/

Item 4: Computer recovery

 

If you ever have to recover files from an unbootable drive or try to bring a dead PC back to life, here's a free, zero-footprint tool you shouldn't be without.

It's a self-contained, CD-based "live" copy of Windows XP. Like the popular "live CD" versions of Linux that can run entirely from a CD-ROM without installing anything on to or making any changes to a system's hard drive, this version of XP lets you boot and run just about any PC without altering anything on the system itself.

The CD-based version is completely self-contained--- you can think of it as a zero-footprint installation of XP--- and yet is "...a complete Win32 environment with network support, a graphical user interface (800x600) and FAT/NTFS/CDFS file system support. Very handy for burn-in testing systems with no OS, rescuing files to a network share, virus scan and so on."

And it's free!

Full story: http://www.langa.com/newsletters/2005/2005-08-11.htm#1

 

Item 5: Pinter schemes

 

Tired of seeing your pointer as an arrow or an hourglass all the time? Windows XP offers a number of alternative pointer schemes, such as Dinosaur, Ocean and Sports.

Open the Control Panel, double-click Mouse, and select the Pointers tab. (If you start in Category view, select Appearance and Themes, then click Mouse Pointers under "See Also.") Next to Schemes, click the down arrow and select a scheme to preview its pointers. Click OK to apply the scheme to your desktop. Simple as that.

 

Item 6: Want to chance defaults

 

In XP, your favorite programs are displayed in the top left column of the Start menu. Microsoft starts you off with Internet Explorer and Outlook Express.
Want to display a different set of applications in this spot? Right-click an empty portion of the Start menu's left column and select Properties > Start Menu > Customize. At the bottom, deselect the program you no longer want displayed in the "Show on the Start menu" dialog, and, using Windows Explorer or My Computer, navigate to the program you want instead. Right-click the program and select "Pin to Start menu." To rename the new shortcut, right-click it and select Rename. Note: You can't pin files, just programs.

 

Item 7: This is so cool; but don’t forget to turn on your volume control.

 

Want to hear your computer talk? Select Start, Programs, Accessories, Accessibility, Narrator. Or press the Windows key plus the letter "U" to open the Utility Manager. Microsoft Narrator, an accessibility option designed to assist readers who are blind or have impaired vision, starts automatically.
Once you've read through the intro screen (or let the Narrator do it), click OK and you'll see a dialog box of Narrator options. Assuming you want to leave Narrator running, select the desired options, then minimize its dialog box. And if you've opened the Utility Manager, feel free to close it.
To turn Narrator off, click the Exit button or right-click its taskbar item and select Close.

 

Item 8: Too much like fun

 

Google’s content blocker: http://j-walk.com/other/googlecb/index.htm

 

Item 9: See you on Saturday. Lots of fun.

 

Chuck