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1  News and Reviews / Mini-Reviews by Members / Re: Mini-Review and Discount (Sep 2010): USB Safely Remove and Zentimo on: August 13, 2010, 11:37:28 PM
I bought a license for USB Safely Remove back in November with a promotional discount. (less than $20 - don't remember exactly) Have it installed on five machines at home and works fine. One thing I like is when I turn on/off a USB device like a printer, it notifies me the device is loaded or unloaded.
2  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: lap top cooling pad on: August 13, 2010, 09:57:07 PM
My laptop doesn't run all the time, so I elected to use a passive Targus folding desk than can be used either in your lap or folded to prop the laptop. The angle is perfect for me and enough air circulates underneath to keep the machine cool.

If you run your laptop longer every day, I'd suggest getting an AC adapter powered pad to avoid possibly burning out a USB  port.
3  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Partition Alignment increases performance on: July 14, 2010, 12:02:33 PM
The time to use this tool is either after a fresh OS install - with Service Packs - or when when assembling a disk array for additional storage/backup. This seems to be especially useful when a new build or install includes virtualization and integrating a SSD as the primary drive.

It worked well enough on the Win 7 Pro build I just finished that contained an OCZ Vertex 2 64GB SSD for a primary, and two WD 1TB drives for programs and data. The Paragon blog has more about SSD alignment here:

Btw, they just released a freeware (liteware) version of their virtualization software called Go Virtual.
Haven't tried it, mostly because I already use their shareware virtualization manager for P2V.
4  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: A special gift from to DonationCoder - thank you! on: July 14, 2010, 10:43:51 AM
Many kudos to veign, skwire, and all of the other good folks who make this such a positive environment! I raise my glass to you all.
5  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Death and the net: How to log off gracefully for the very last time on: June 15, 2010, 09:50:43 PM
I'm neither that organized nor important.

When I die, I think I'll just stop posting. Cool

P.S. Good set of links. Seriously. Thmbsup

One anomaly however. When I tried LastMail's website I got this:
 (see attachment in previous post)

I tend to agree. These are the kind of operations I can do without depending on clouds or webware. In fact, I've already done so; I gave my closest friend and beneficiary access to everything having to do with finances.

Well...I don't know if these are appropriate to the topic but I felt the theme needed some of these:

Apologies if these are inappropriate.

Love it! Thanks!
6  Special User Sections / Site/Forum Features / Re: Changes to Forum Profile Visibility on: May 10, 2010, 01:59:56 AM
I haven't experienced any problems...but I'm a little dense, admittedly.  embarassed
7  Special User Sections / Site/Forum Features / Re: Friendly 404 on: May 10, 2010, 01:57:03 AM
The whitespace is nice and the layout feels right. Good job!
8  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: My new digital camera... on: May 10, 2010, 01:49:26 AM
btw, hamradio.. if you didn't know already, i just remembered this useful tool for stitching panoramic images - Microsoft's Image Composite Editor (ICE). could come in handy for you. smiley

ICE works pretty well; I'd like to point out you can also stitch images together in Irfanview. It's not a true panorama tool, but I find it useful for creating before-and-after images. As to your new camera - congratulations! It's a nice step up from a pocket point-and-shoot and Fuji makes good cameras, too. You must be having a blast. I recall my first digital Nikon in about 2000; after 35 years of film cameras, I was blown away. Even my dSLRs haven't quite matched that first thrill. Good luck!
9  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: two-monitors ergonomics on: May 08, 2010, 11:13:08 PM
Four monitors? Do you guys ever go anywhere?  Wink
I was using DisplayFusion with a Lenovo laptop and a 22" LCD; still have it.
A few months ago, I gave my 22" NEC CRT a new home and replaced it with two 26" (1900x1200) monitors. Looking around, I discovered Ultramon. While DF is cheaper, I decided to try Ultramon and couldn't be happier with the results. I do a lot of graphic work - don't know how I survived without a setup like this before!
10  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Donationcoder: How did you find it + What has your experience been like so far. on: April 23, 2010, 04:01:29 PM
If I remember correctly (which is no mean thing these days) I think I was pointed here by a link in a Fred Langa newsletter.
Same  here...and I miss Fred's LangaList. I was paid subscriber, same as Ian's TechSupportAlert. Windows Secrets is vastly improved by their presence (I still hate the ads in a paid newsletter).

DC has been a rare treat in the oft times tumultuous world of the internet. The civilty and enthusiasm is a joy; I feel fortunate.
 Thmbsup Kiss
11  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Must-have Windows Programs on: February 13, 2010, 02:42:00 AM
Hello Folks. I wish I knew just what you all have forgotten. As I read over the site it is painful to feel so stupid. You talk about 100 things that you must have an I don't have a clue what they are or what you would need them for. I am always trying downloads, when I see them in, Cnet or Znet and with out exception I mess up my computer. In my effort to try and make something that works well run better I end up with a program that dozen work at all.

rodgarnett - If you find you're "messing up" your computer with multiple installs/uninstalls, try this routine:

1) Before running an installer, backup your registry. ERUNT is easy to use.
2) If your OS is Windows XP or higher, create a restore point with System Restore.
3) Use Revo Uninstaller Free to remove any leftover entries when you remove a program from your drive. http://www.revouninstalle...taller_free_download.html
Should keep you from problems as a rule.

To everyone else: all the combinations and permutations of software show we all tend to use much of the same software. A cursory look at the lists tells me I'm using 95% of these on different machines. (I have a fair amount of commercial graphic and audio software) Not necessarily "the Best" for everyone, but certainly skewed in favor of a bunch of tech heads like DC members. The programs I don't recognize/know well are going to get a second look, so thanks to zridling for the thread!
12  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: How can we *share* better in 2010? on: February 13, 2010, 02:21:45 AM
Yea, definitely a diction mistake on my part. I should have phrased it like Perry does -- share and promote. There's a lot to brag about on this site, on what it has become, and the good it does year after year. So to get back to the original question:

- Tell your friends.
- Mention on other sites and forums where relevant.
- Be ready to recommend member software where you see a need.
- Blog, twit, and best of all, contribute here.

That's what I meant.

Exactly so. DC rises or falls by the efforts of everyone who contributes, no matter how small.
13  Special User Sections / Site/Forum Features / Re: Should we experiment with google ads on the site for 1 month? on: February 13, 2010, 01:58:16 AM
Not an unreasonable idea for an experiment, but think about putting it on the back burner for a while. Jan-March is one of the worst times of the year for retail environments. The revenue from ads at this time of year would be skewed to a low amount. Think of some time between June and December; you'll get a clearer picture of the effectiveness and the general level of reaction. imo.
14  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Yea, I won't be getting an iPad anytime soon on: February 13, 2010, 01:50:56 AM
it will be interesting to me to see how well it sells.

i do see the gut-level appeal in a nice touch tablet -- and yet tablets have been around for many years and the practical use for them seems limited.

there are other deal breakers for me -- the lock-in the apple application store is totally unacceptable and alone would make the device something i wouldn't want to get involved in.

plus i'm holding out for a proper full-sized ebook reader with e-ink style display that is easy on the eyes.

As usual, this is something that shoots itself in the foot just for those reasons. Maybe by the third generation, when a reasonably useful iPad sells for much less than a $1000, it'll be ready for prime time.
15  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: I hate Valentine's Day! on: February 13, 2010, 01:45:36 AM
Curiously, I don't even think about Valentine's Day. I planned to take my friend of nearly 40 years to dinner on Saturday (she asked me about Valentine's for some reason) and didn't realize that day is the 13th until hours later. We normally don't observe the 14th; we count the 15th as our day. Why? Because that's the day, all those years ago, we fell in love forever.
16  Other Software / Developer's Corner / Re: “Is PayPal good for your microISV business?” A short PayPal horror story on: December 23, 2009, 12:45:50 PM
im a big fan of paypal.. i know people occasionally have trouble with it, but they seem to be the best deal for small payments, and i've had nothing but good experiences with them.

Agreed. For small amounts, or even the occasional larger transaction, PayPal has always worked well enough for me. The apparent incompetence of the "representative" layer for problem-solving is an eye-opener, though. Definitely Kafka-esque, but then so are many experiences when dealing with bureaucracies.
17  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: How Success Killed Duke Nukem - A heartbreaking story of developer failure on: December 23, 2009, 12:28:58 PM
a good insight on the whole operations. blowing $20million on the project and still without an end, that is telling something. i wonder what happened to ken silverman who wrote the original Build engine?

He wrote PNGOUT, and still maintains it smiley

PNGOUTWin is a pretty nice little image utility. It compresses different image file formats to PNG. I just ran across it recently and find it very useful.
18  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Infectious Greed: Dishwashers, and How Google Eats Its Own Tail on: December 23, 2009, 12:22:46 PM
While most of my review searches are for a limited range of products, I have noticed how many "review" sites are typically composed of wording from the manufacturer/press release. If I see the same brief description on the search page, I usually just pass those by. Over time, there are sites I've found that actually review the products I'm interested in, so I tend to return there for information.

In actual practice, while "depth-charging" some of the sales linking sites is intriguing, I suspect it's just a fantasy. Search engines follow Google's model because it generates revenue. They're not likely to let anything interfere with that, imo.

19  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Yet another 0-day pdf exploit in the wild on: December 23, 2009, 12:02:46 PM
Do all readers open in browsers like Adobe? Even my favorite, PDF-XChange does. At least it's faster and lighter on resources.
20  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Google's Eric Schmidt has a stupid moment on privacy on: December 23, 2009, 11:53:21 AM
It's not just big corporations and the government we have to worry about. A rubber duck can steal your identity on facebook.

I'm not a Facebooker or any of the social network users, but the ducky experiment is just plain surprising. How can presumably rational individuals give so much of themselves away? It makes me think the concept of personal privacy has been eroded beyond repair, even though I truly hope not.
21  News and Reviews / Older Newsletters / Re: --> Newsletter for December 9th, 2009 - "The NANY Event Begins" on: December 10, 2009, 01:14:14 AM
Lots of good stuff as usual. The Win 7 sections are going to keep me busy for a while!

Thanks  thumbs up smiley
22  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for recommendations of RAW photo processor on: December 10, 2009, 01:00:15 AM
Bibble Pro has been stuck at V.4.9 since September of '06. I used it when I first got it, but it's kind of fallen out of my workflow since. Helicon is shareware, but it reverts to a limited freeware version after the 30-day trial period ends. I still have a fairly recent paid version on one of my machines.
I use Capture One 5 Pro, Lightroom 2, with  Photoshop CS2. Just took advantage of a 30% discount offer to upgrade DxO Optics from V.5 to V.6. Capture One and DxO are terrific when you're processing hundreds of images at a time, but definitely not cheap. In my case, they've paid for themselves in terms of time over and over.

I've never used RawTherapee or RAWHide, however I'm inclined to agree with JavaJones about Picasa. From what I've seen, it looks OK for working with a few images.
23  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: do you know good photo collection hosting site on: December 10, 2009, 12:29:02 AM
Really depends on your needs. What are you looking for? If pure sharing is your goal, Flickr is definitely the most ubiquitous site for this. Everyone has heard of it and Flickr has the most users of that ilk.

However if privacy is a concern, just forget Flickr. Your photos can be found and grabbed by anyone on the internet regardless of your privacy settings. Smugmug is the best with privacy I have found. However SmugMug is also considerably more expensive. Photobucket is another possibility. Easy to use, very easy to link to images from there for a blog, etc. And Photobucket, like Flickr, has nice pricing.

Hope this helps!


Thanks for this and your other explanatory post about Flickr. I don't use it myself, but I've occasionally mentioned it along with other photo sharing sites to friends. Privacy seems like more and more of an illusion these days, but if a site allows a user to set "permissions", they should honor the intent.
24  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: How would you improve a standard PC keyboard? on: December 09, 2009, 09:36:03 PM

Well, you could save up your pennies and get the Optimus MaximusHas it seen the light of day yet?  Apparently shipping....crap, now I want one.

Agggh! I forgot all about these Optimus boards! Curse you, Red Baron! 177,777 pennies....oh well.
25  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: [rant] Seriously? Software pricing is officially nuts on: December 09, 2009, 09:25:01 PM
ACDSee Pro was a good software for the Photo Enthusiast and/or Advanced Amateur market. I can't speak to its' recent versions, but it sounds like the developers fell prey to loading the code with multiple features. Lifetime licenses for high-end software is an extravagance, imo, as my needs change over time. Among other things, I'm a semi-retired pro photographer, using Phase One, Lightroom 2, and Photoshop CS2. Don't feel the need for any upgrades.
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