About Computers for Newbies & Everyone Else

February 20, 2012

2012-02-20 WSVA Show Notes

Today, “Facebook” seemed to take over the show.  Do you like the new timeline feature? Do you think it should be optional, removed, left in place or something else? Do you even know/care what it is, if so visit PC Magazine and see the lowdown about it?

Let us know, but while you are thinking here is what else we discussed on todays show, along with the entire podcast here.

Tech News
Are you a nomophobe?
Are you a nomophobe — afraid of losing your mobile phone? There’s help!

Kelly Reeves was getting ready for a trip when her phone slipped into a sink full of water. Panic moment! She quickly picked up the wet device and tried to turn it on, but nothing worked. Her first reaction? She got dressed, drove to the nearest store, and bought a new model at full retail price.

A new study conducted by security-authentication company SecurEnvoy finds that fear of losing your phone is a common ailment. About 66 percent of those surveyed suffer from nomophobia (or “no mobile phone phobia ”); interestingly, more women worry about losing their phone than men.

Apple Textbooks
Introducing an entirely new kind of textbook that’s dynamic, current, engrossing, and truly interactive. A textbook created by publishers using a new authoring tool from Apple. A textbook brought to life by iPad.

Paper textbooks are expensive to produce and expensive for schools to buy (RON’S THOUGHT: but will that really change? Look at the cost of paper books to ebooks now…no difference). Which is why schools are forced to use a book for several years to make the finances work. But information changes so quickly that some textbooks are out of date almost before they’re published. And as books are passed along from one student to the next, they get more highlighted, dog-eared, tattered, and worn. Heavy backpacks. Weighed-down students.

It’s no secret that paper textbooks are heavy. But what you may not know is that backpack weight is an increasing problem among kids. Studies show that heavy backpacks can lead to both chronic back pain and poor posture — and many kids are carrying a quarter of their body weight in textbooks. is the most popular, comprehensive and up-to-date source of drug information online. Providing free, peer-reviewed, accurate and independent data on more than 24,000 prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines & natural products. Find helpful tools, wallet size personal medication records, mobile applications and more.

Pill Identifier is a good one. You find a pill laying around the house. Give it the numbers stamped into it, the shape and or color and it tells you what the pill is.

Dad Shoots Daughter’s Computer 
(Be warned! Some profanity ensues.)

Agree with the dad or not, I think he gets the point across.

I hope to see you here next month for the next EXCITING podcast!

January 23, 2012

2012-01-23 WSVA Show Notes

Welcome to the first show of 2012!  This is the beginning of our third year and I am certainly glad you are still listening and reading.

I want more of you this year to sign up and be members of the site. It costs (my favorite amount) $0.00, all you need is an email address and I will NOT SPAM you.  I think I sent out one email last year to all the members.

So anyway here you go with the notes from the latest show along with a link to the podcast if you would prefer to listen to the show.

Thanks for joining us.


Tech News
Tablet, e-book ownership soaring, study finds
A study finds the number of people who own tablets or e-readers has soared after the devices proved to be a popular gift over the holidays.A report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project set to be released Jan. 23, 2012, finds that 29 % of Americans owned at least one tablet or e-reader as of the beginning of this month. That’s up from 18 percent in December.

Americans are Quitting TV
Has America’s love affair with bigger and better TVs gone sour?According to a survey from Accenture, people are watching less broadcast and cable TV. Less than a third intend to buy a new TV in 2012. Smartphones, tablets and computers are eroding traditional TV viewing — bad news for TV manufacturers and traditional content providers.

The online survey of 10,000 adults in 10 countries, including 1,000 in the U.S., found that the percentage of people watching broadcast or cable TV in a typical week on televisions fell from 71 percent in 2009 to 48 percent in 2011. The percentage of consumers who intend to buy a TV set during the next 12 months also declined, from 35 percent in 2010 to 32 percent in 2011.

Columbia University says the net may be changing the way we think
The rise of Internet search engines like Google has changed the way our brain remembers information, according to research by Columbia University psychologist Betsy Sparrow published July 14 in Science.“Since the advent of search engines, we are reorganizing the way we remember things,” said Sparrow. “Our brains rely on the Internet for memory in much the same way they rely on the memory of a friend, family member or co-worker. We remember less through knowing information itself than by knowing where the information can be found.

If your child receives free school lunches, you may qualify.
Internet access for $9.95/month plus taxes.No price increases, no activation fees, no equipment rental fees.

Geocaching with Android
Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online.

Now you can geocache using your Android phone and Groundspeak’s Geocaching for Android Application.

Dad creates Autism App

imageRon’s nephew, Joe Hill, creates an iPhone app to help his two kids, the family and the rest of the world with Autism.

I hope you are able to listen in and call in next month along with visiting the site between now and next month  on Monday, the 2oth of February, 2012.

November 21, 2011

2011-11-21 WSVA Show Notes

Here you go another exciting (well OK hopefully interesting) thing Jim and I looked at this month on the show. 

Below are all of the applications, sites, etc. we talked about plus here is the podcast for your listening pleasure back at WSVA Online.

Have a great month and I  hope you will be listening and calling next month, Monday, December 19th!


Tech News
It’s Okay to Unfriend on Facebook, Emily Post Says
The 18th edition of "Emily Post’s Etiquette"; the quintessential guide to modern manners, has been revised to include seven chapters that cover manners in social media and technology.

Can’t remember if the fork goes on the left and the spoon goes on the right? For perfect P’s and Q’s, you know exactly whom to ask: Emily Post.

But what are the rules when you’re talking with a friend and she whips out her cellphone to check her email, or when someone you never liked in high school suddenly wants to be friends on Facebook? Who’s there to tell you the right thing to do?

    Here are a few of Emily’s suggestions:

  • Never interrupt a conversation to answer a call, email or text.
  • the book says you should always respond within a day or two to personal messages, and within 24 hours for business mails.
  • When in a suitable place to use a cellphone, watch your volume, tone and language.
  • The book frowns upon cellphone use in a place of worship, theater, or restaurant, or during a meeting or presentation.
  • If you’re expecting an urgent call, you should set your device to vibrate and check it later, or move to a private space and speak as quietly as possible.
  • You also don’t have to continue contact with a Facebook “friend” after the initial reconnection conversation, and it’s perfectly acceptable to actively unfriend someone, untag yourself from photos, or delete a friend’s comment from your page.

Physicians using tablets to treat patients
Within the next year, almost half of all doctors will be using tablets and other mobile devices to perform everyday tasks, such as accessing patient information in electronic medical records (EMRs), according to the survey by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), a nonprofit group.

Today, a quarter of healthcare providers surveyed say they’re using tablets in their practice. Another 21% indicated they expect to do so within a year.

The study shows that more than half of healthcare professionals currently use a smartphone for work, and about a third use their smartphones or tablets to access EMR systems. Another 20% expect to start mobile usage with Emergency Medical Records within the next year.

Any doctors in our area have any thoughts?

Retail Me Not
Coupon codes, printable coupons, grocery coupons for Christmas-or any other time!

Advice from the pros: For extra secret sales and discounts, get the company’s store credit card as many promotions are for card holders, only. HOWEVER–don’t be tempted to run up that charge card! Any savings you initially make will be lost if you are paying off a high interest rate.

1 Sale a Day
Every 23 hours they run another sale of four or more items. They are categorized as Electronics, Watches, Family and Jewelry.

Be cautious as sometimes they have good deals and other times just so-so deals.

Google Music
Do you have an iPod, iPad, Tablet PC, SmartPhone and on-and-on that you have music on? If so you have to try Google Music.

I have been using Google Music, during the Beta trail, for the past month or two and it is slick.

I have uploaded all of my music to the site (about 2,500 songs and books) and can play it from most anywhere I can get online. Whether phone, tablet any computer, etc. They have a limit of up to 20,000 songs to be uploaded, stored and streamed (played online) for free.

They also have a store to buy more music at some very good prices. I think Google may have bet the competitors with this one.

See you next month and don’t forget to follow Double Clicks on Twitter and Facebook!

October 24, 2011

2011-10-24 WSVA Show Notes

Here you go, the news, links and sites we mentioned today on the show.  And don’t forget you can listen to the podcast of the show here.

Have a great month and I hope you hear from me then!


Tech News

Ford vehicles will read you text messages while you drive
Ford is installing a feature in its new vehicles — and many of its older ones — that can read text messages out loud.

The feature, which is intended to reduce texting while driving, is part of Ford’s voice-activated technology, Sync, and is already installed on all model 2012 Ford vehicles with the exception of the Ranger.

Using a Bluetooth connection, it syncs with phones and alerts users when they receive text messages, reads them out loud and allows users to respond with a selection of standard pre-written messages without taking their hands off the wheel.

Google Unveils Driverless Car Tech
Self-driving car technology was unveiled by Google, the pioneering search engine turned car maker.

The website’s co-founder Sergey Brin announced Wednesday that 10 percent of the company is working on innovative projects outside the web domain — the first of which is the building of "autonomous" cars.

The driverless vehicles, which travel through normal roads under the instruction of computers, are designed to help people with mobility issues and to combat congestion.

For info on how it actually works check it out at IEEE Spectrum.

Virginia Law regarding driving and cell phones usage.

Let Me Google That For You
People ask you a question about something that you know would be easy to Google; just send them a link from this site.

Type in the search and it creates a link you can email them and then they just click it and get the search.

Try these –> and 

Who Calls Me?
This is a user supplied database of phone numbers of telemarketers, non-profit organizations, charities, political surveyors, SCAM artists, and other companies that don’t leave messages, disconnect once you answer, and simply interrupt your day.

If you received a strange call, unwanted SMS message, or just came across a number you don’t recognize and want more information about, most likely you are not the only one. Search for this phone number to see the reports of others. If there are no reports yet, leave your comment to start a conversation.

If the number you searched for isn’t in their database, you can add it to the list and see if someone else knows about it. Other users will post to your listing over time.

Also, they have a look up on the site where you can pay to find more information on many numbers.

A site that lists many of the Facebook scams running around from time-to-time. Also, a blog about them with some "Funny Pages" thrown in for fun.

It actually appears as though it could be a quite beneficial site over time.

Have a great month and I will be talking to you next month on November 21, 2011 from 10am to 11am.

September 19, 2011

2011-09-19 WSVA Show Notes

Here are the sites/news mentioned this morning on the show.  As always your comments are appreciated.  See you next month on Monday, October 17!

If you missed the show please check out the podcast (this could take a while to download depending on your internet connection).


Tech News
Last minute update, who are the three most dangerous people on the internet?
Heidi Klum. Cameron Diaz and Piers Morgan (what?)

They are currently the most "search for" celebs on the net. Hackers use some graphics, apps, etc. to load malicious payloads on your computer if you look them up and click those items. Only in certain places not everywhere on the net.

Terrafugia Flying Car Cleared for Landing in US

As many as 100 people have put down a $10,000 deposit for their Terrafugia Transition.

A flying car retailing for $227,000 could be on roads in a matter of months — and customers are already lining up to be the first to get their hands on one, its maker claims.

Recently, the Terrafugia Transition passed a significant milestone when it was cleared for takeoff by the U.S. National Highway Safety Administration. It’s taken Terrafugia founder Carl Dietrich just five years to realize his dream, with some media outlets reporting that the Transition could now be on U.S. roads by the end of next year.

First there was Planking – then Owling now…

While the planking trend involved taking your picture in various places lying flat, “batmanning” is much more difficult–and possibly more dangerous. It involves hanging upside down, only by your feet.

A group of Purdue University freshmen claim to have started the trend late last month. They made a video that shows them hanging from various locations on campus–from parking garages, stadium gates and statues.

Search for ‘Batmanning‘ and you can see a few successful ones, but mostly crashes with lots of limping.

Fading BarCodes?
It’s happened to most of us (some more often than others): You bite into an apple/pear/cucumber only to find that the perfectly ripe fruit or vegetable you picked up at the store two days ago is not exactly ripe but is rather disgusting.

Designers at Yanko Designs are developing a new barcode that will make that unpleasant experience a thing of the past by fading the barcode "ink" with the freshness of the fruit/vegetable.

VTOL (Vertical Take-Off and Landing aircraft)

I don’t know how we got here but anyway we were, so take a look at some of them.

Find out about web/email/etc. scams on the web and all around the world at the government’s FBI site.

The only software talked about today, and very lightly at that, was XBMC (Xbox Media Center).  If you want to know more about XBMC start here.

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