March 2010

Good day all, 

The next meeting of your computer club will be this coming Saturday, March 20th, at the usual place (Panamerican School) in Belen at 9am (or 8:30, if you want to have coffee and donuts and chat with friends).  Come one and all to learn what's new in the world of computing hardware and software.  I guarantee you will take away something that you can use to your benefit (it always works that way).  So come and share what you know and learn what you don't.


Here are some things that might enlighten your day or at least be of interest:

Item 1. A few days ago Google’s CEO pronounced that that the PC would be dead in 3 years. 



As an Ex-CTO for a large multi-national hardware company that stet strategy based on his predictions, you’d likely give his comments a lot of credit. Given it was Sun that he worked for, maybe not so much. The arrogance of such a comment during the week when the Game Developer’s Conference is underway got me thinking of a recent story I heard about dialog between Marine Pilot and an Iranian Controller. Obviously I was connecting Eric Schmidt, Google’s CEO, to that controller. 

 

Full story here: http://www.tgdaily.com/hardware-features/48847-google-extreme-arrogance-and-gaming

 

Item 2. book readers and more

 

The iPad won't be out for a few weeks, but that doesn't have to stop you from getting on the e-book train today. In fact, there are a ton of e-book readers and proto-tablets that you can buy now, and some of them are pretty good. Come to think of it, who even needs an iPad? Yes, we know the iPad is a lot more than an e-book reader: It also lets you browse the web (that part of it that's not dependent on Flash, anyway), check your e-mail, edit documents, and watch movies. But reading e-books is one of the big things we expect the 

iPad will be good for, and with its support for EPUB documents and access to Apple's new iBook store, it will indeed be a competitive e-reader. So why do you need to spend $500 or more if all you want to do is read e-books?

 

Story here:  http://www.wired.com/reviews/product/pr_tablet_roundup


Item 3. A new energy source  (I always love these kinds of things).


It's so tiny, you can't see it with the naked eye. Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have discovered an energy source that you can see only through a microscope. The researchers devised a process for generating electricity using nanotechnology. They plan to refine the process in hopes of creating a new

environmentally friendly battery, among other products.


Story here:  http://www.cnn.com/2010/TECH/03/12/mit.research.electricity/index.html

Item 4. Using the Internet to control  (I'm glad I live in Costa Rica)



Two reports have concluded that governments around the world are increasingly limiting freedom of expression on the internet. The US State Department's annual human rights report highlights the way the internet has changed the way governments seek to control their citizens.


Story here: http://www.tgdaily.com/software-features/48846-governments-use-internet-as-tool-of-control

Item 5.  Do you know about "scareware"?  (Based on the stuff I get in my inbox from members,  I think you do.)

 

Security software vendor McAfee this week launched its new Consumer Threat Alert program, a blog and e-mail subscription service dedicated to keeping consumers up to date on the latest malware and online scams circulating throughout cyberspace.

 

Story here: http://itmanagement.earthweb.com/features/article.php/3870466/Scareware-Most-Costly-Online-Scam-McAfee.htm


Item 6.  Linux was never easier


Some Linux users insist that anything you can do on Windows, you can do better on Linux. While there's some truth to that, many of us have Windows applications that make completely leaving Windows close to impossible. That's where CodeWeavers' latest version of CrossOver Linux comes in. CrossOver Linux 9 (code-named Snow Mallard) and its Mac brother, CrossOver Mac 9, let you run many popular Windows applications on Linux or Mac OS X. Supported Windows applications include Microsoft Office (from Office 97 to Office 2007), Internet Explorer 6 and 7, Outlook 2002 to 2007, all current versions of Quicken up to 2010 and QuickBooks up to 2004, and some versions of Photoshop and Photoshop CS. Based on my experience with CrossOver, which goes back more than a decade, I'd say this new version supports about 20% more applications (at a level that most users would find usable) than the last one.

 

Story here: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9168618/CrossOver_Linux_9_Run_Windows_apps_without_Windows

 

Item 7. Some fun this Saturday

 

I think we are going to have some fun this Saturday.  

 

See you there.

 

Chuck