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1  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: I no longer read WIRED - and why I'm glad I stopped reading it years ago on: January 17, 2015, 07:22:38 PM
Although WIRED's editorial offices remained in San Francisco, the magazine gradually became one more "Condé" magazine with a distinct New York (i.e. "more mainstream") vibe. And this all happened (in true Condé Nast fashion) despite numerous boilerplate assurances it would be kept as it was before the acquisition. The executive editors that followed slowly but surely repurposed WIRED into yet another trendy, industry-suckup, celebrity chasing, lifestyle magazine. In short, much like all the other magazines Condé Nast Publications regularly cranks out each month. It's a formula that works well for them, so it should come as no surprise they apply it to every media property they assimilate.

...and this very transformation is happening to Ars Technica as we speak, though it is still in the early stages. They even concluded their purchase of the web site with their obligatory "Nothing's going to change!" promise. Although, some would say the transformation started happening years earlier when the web site's staff would always recommend an Apple solution to everything...even if a different platform was bone-crushingly superior in every way.

What follows is both a funny and sad story about what has to be one of the most bleak-looking workplaces imaginable. One that looks more like a floor in some dystopian secret police headquarters than it does the offices of a jouralistic enterprise.

Doesn't seem dystopian to me, but I'm picturing it in its final state, being populated by hipsters wearing their horn-rimmed glasses with the non-prescription lenses, artificially distressed leather messenger bags, and their "It's not dystopian...we designed it this way ironically. If you don't get it, you'll never get it" attitudes.
2  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: What is the currently best Desktop Search software? on: January 10, 2015, 11:24:23 AM
Desktop search software is very frustrating. I revisit the topic every so often as I'm always looking for better tools, but at the end I'm always left aggravated. Ideally, in my mind, the perfect solution would be something that provided quick searches, could search inside files as well as just filenames, and have something like QuickView Plus bolted on that would provide previews of most file types.

X1 - Far from perfect, but the absolute best if you use the criteria above as a guideline. Sadly, it seems they are very aware of being the best and have priced their product accordingly. Very expensive...just expensive enough to put it over the line of insulting. If you want the best, you and your wallet will be oh so painfully aware that you are paying for the best.

Copernic Destkop Search - This is the source of most of that aforementioned aggravation. On paper they are the golden child. The feature list is a dream, the UI is functional *and* attractive, and it has file preview capabilities to die for. However, their programmers are either extremely incompetent, drink a *lot*, or both. Stupid bugs that you can't believe that made it past QA that have been in the product for years and a liberal dash of WTF moments that make you wonder how they have managed to stay in business. Even if you can put all that aside, it's been proven that their indexing routine misses some files. What's the point of having a program that can search if it cannot find everything?

dtSearch - This is a solution geared towards corporations and the cold UI and barely there acceptable list of features make this an unappetizing choice for home users. I would wager they make their bones by providing lucrative support plans and willingness to accept company purchase orders. There are more capable, less expensive, more efficient options available.

UltraFinder - This is one that's slipped under my radar and it only just recently came to my attention. It's made by IDM, the same people who make UltraEdit. It's a weird hybrid between the search programs above and the likes of Everything Search Engine that use the MFT to find things lightning-fast. The product page is sparse on listing features, but near as I can tell it has a limited file preview capability that will support PDF, Excel, Word, and text files. I've never used this one, but I will give them credit for putting in a duplicate finding function. Makes sense when you think of it.

Everything Search Engine is very capable and very fast. Development stalled for a long while, but it's started back up again. It uses the MFT to search your NTFS drives super-fast. I used to use this, but have moved on to Listary Pro. It uses the MFT of your drives to search as well, but has some other features I have come to rely on as well.

File Locator Pro is an excellent stand-alone traditionally styled search program. However, when I need something like that I usually just use the search functionality built into my file manager of choice.
3  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: I want to know about web hosting? on: January 08, 2015, 08:19:27 PM
It's such an old ploy that I'm surprised anybody is still doing it. Wink

Definitely...last I heard all the scumbag companies that used this tactic moved on to planting shill accounts in forums, letting them be active in discussions for months/years, and then cranking up the sales pitch in order to make it look like 'normal', 'respected' members of the forums were making recommendations, but people caught onto that, too.
4  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: QTTabbar (now at version 1024) is once again my favourite on: January 08, 2015, 08:16:42 PM
I've used older versions of this. This is just what the doctor ordered if you need something just a wee bit more powerful than stock Explorer, but you don't want to go full throttle with a full-blown replacement file manager.

Glad to see it is still around and being actively developed.
5  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Windows 10 Announced on: January 04, 2015, 11:51:54 AM
With work and studies I haven't been paying too close attention to Windows 10 until now. Now I'm sitting here pondering installing the latest Preview. Unfortunately, what's holding me back isn't the OS itself, but rather support for my favorite apps. Might be time to set up a VM and give it a go.

My tip for those who are trying to adapt to Windows 8/10 coming from older OSes is that you are only going to get frustrated if you try to force the new OS to have the same workflow as your old OS. Relax, keep an open mind, and explore the new tools Microsoft has supplied you. Adapt yourself to a new workflow using the new tools in the new OS and you will eventually reach a point where you are much more productive than you were with your old OS. Some stuff won't make sense at first. Some stuff will never make sense. But some stuff will eventually click with you and a day will come when if you are ever sitting in front of that old OS you'll wonder how you ever used such an archaic thing.


6  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: For better security, maybe it's time to abandon e-mail? on: December 27, 2014, 07:05:08 PM
I'm not sure that’s universally true. For a lot of people, the journey itself is the reward rather than the destination. And many people would rather "do it right" than merely "do it right now."

No, of course that's not universally true. I did qualify my statements at the beginning by saying 'generally speaking'. There are always people that rise to the top, but there are always people who sink to the bottom as well.  Wink

7  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: And IT Man of the Year 2014 Is... on: December 26, 2014, 08:07:45 PM
Considering I have yet to get the point of any of his posts, you're not alone.

I keep telling myself it has to be a language barrier of some kind & the translating program he's using isn't quite up to snuff....or something like that.
8  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: For better security, maybe it's time to abandon e-mail? on: December 24, 2014, 07:39:24 PM
My great grandfather felt the same way about telephones. Why would anybody in their right mind want to talk into a piece of unsanitary plastic when they could just send someone a nicely written letter through a perfectly good postal system for one one-hundredth the cost?

Again, 40hz, it's the path of least resistance. Why sit down, compose your thoughts, put them to paper, find an envelope, purchase postage, and drop it in a mailbox to await days (weeks?) for a reply when you can just pick up a piece of plastic and have instant gratification?

People want what they want straight away and want to put forth the least amount of effort to achieve that goal.
9  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: And IT Man of the Year 2014 Is... on: December 24, 2014, 07:34:04 PM
I'm not sure I quite follow what you're getting at here. But I'll keep trying. smiley

I read through it three times when he first posted it & once just now after reading your reply and I still can't get a sense of what point he is trying to make.
10  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: For better security, maybe it's time to abandon e-mail? on: December 24, 2014, 09:03:23 AM
Nor should they have to IMHO. That's what responsible professionals in our field exist for.

Unfortunately, people have evolved to the point where they are much akin to electricity in that they will always take the path of least resistance. Until the 'responsible professionals in our field' can come up with something new while at the same time come up with something that makes every insecure method more inconvenient for the end users that will cause them to jump ship to the new method, nothing will change.

It doesn't help that most attempts at making things more secure, but easier to use for the end user usually end in disaster. WPS stands as a shining example of that. It was implemented as a way for end users to have a secure home network without having to worry about long passkeys. Of course, it didn't take long for the 'bad people' to find vulnerabilities in WPS which has prompted everyone with half a brain to recommend turning that feature off when you configure your router.

Unfortunately, for all, everyone without half a brain vastly outnumbers those who do and they merrily continue to use vulnerable implementations because people would rather have easy than secure.

Just look at SnapChat. One of the most insecure programs in the history of computing run by a company who simply does not care about the security vulnerabilities in their product and yet there is no sign of SnapChat's popularity waning. An endless string of security professionals *and* media outlets have reported that it is insecure and vulnerable to hacking. The general public have declared they do not care and continue to use it.

Any solution that requires downloading, installing, and/or configuring something that just provides a secure method of something that's already installed on people's PCs or devices is doomed to failure out of the gate.

I admire the intent of this thread & have often wished for the same, but the idiocracy has spoken.
11  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: For better security, maybe it's time to abandon e-mail? on: December 23, 2014, 09:11:15 PM
Text messaging is just as insecure though, and ultimately no communications of that type is ever going to be secure because you can always compromise the device or compromise the server processing that information in order to see it anyway.

Just to clarify the point I was trying to make....Yes, text messaging is just as insecure, if not more so. The general public at large does not care about privacy or security on any large scale at all. I could detail a laundry list of thing that people do every single day without giving a second thought to the security and privacy they are giving up.

People don't care until something happens that personally affects them in an adverse way.
12  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: WinPatrol & WinPrivacy holiday discounts on: December 22, 2014, 07:56:44 PM
Found this on the WinPatrol site regarding WinPrivacy in case anyone is on the fence about this offer:

"If you purchase a license now, you will NOT have to pay any annual subscription fees, EVER! Anticipated annual subscription fees for purchases made after this sales ends will be $12/yr. Again, if you purchase now, you will NOT have to pay any subscription fees EVER!."

So evidently WinPrivacy is anticipated to be a subscription-driven product...unless one buys now.
13  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: WinPatrol & WinPrivacy holiday discounts on: December 22, 2014, 12:18:19 PM
Use coupon code: Happy Holidays

Thanks for the coupon code, xtabber. Using this code will allow you to buy licenses to both programs for $15.97 total. That's less than $8.00 each.

At that price point it's like they are daring you to be stupid enough to pass on a deal like that. Mama didn't raise no stupid babies so I jumped on it.

And unlike some other software publishers, I received my license info via email immediately.
14  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: WinPatrol & WinPrivacy holiday discounts on: December 22, 2014, 07:35:42 AM
...and is also offering WinPatrol licenses at 60% off for the holiday season.

Minor correction...according to their home page, it's a 70% discount for a bottom-line price of $8.99. That's pretty darn reasonable. Might be time for me to buy in...
15  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: For better security, maybe it's time to abandon e-mail? on: December 22, 2014, 07:31:37 AM
Well, email could be reasonably secure if everyone would take up the time to set up secure authentication in their email clients and use things like GPG to encrypt and digitally sign all correspondence.

However, we are a species who, generally speaking, didn't care we had flashing clocks on our VCRs for *years* so...none of what I just said is probably going to happen. smiley

As for the replacement of email, though, text messaging has all but done that.
16  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Sticky Password - 40% Discount on Lifetime Premium License on: December 21, 2014, 11:04:52 AM
Anyone who can comment on how this compares to something like LastPass?

I have never used LastPass, but this program is wonderful for someone who has taken the recent database hacks of big companies in the news as a sign that one shouldn't store one's passwords in the cloud. Instead you can sync your password database between all your devices via WiFi. Although, it does offer cloud storage if you want it.
17  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Sticky Password - 40% Discount on Lifetime Premium License on: December 20, 2014, 06:43:23 PM
Thanks! Any information on how long that discount will be valid?

Unfortunately, I can't seem to find any information on when it expires.
18  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Sticky Password - 40% Discount on Lifetime Premium License on: December 20, 2014, 01:35:05 PM
Follow the link below to save 40% off of a lifetime premium license for Sticky Password.

Normally $49.99...price with discount is $29.99.

Product Information

Buy It Now

(Good news for Pale Moon users. The 32-bit version of Pale Moon is now supported by Sticky Password.)

19  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Free Lifetime License Upgrade for Former Sticky Password Customers on: December 20, 2014, 01:29:25 PM
If you bought a license for Sticky Password prior to December 8, 2014 (Free licenses given away at GiveAwayoftheDay, BitsDuJour, etc. do not count, unfortunately.). Just keep your current version installed & download and install the latest version of their software from their website.

The next time you are online your license will be upgraded to lifetime and you'll receive 3 one-year premium licenses emailed to you for family and friends.

(Good news for Pale Moon users. The 32-bit version of Pale Moon is now supported by Sticky Password.)
20  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: which phone? on: December 18, 2014, 08:29:13 PM
EDIT: After using it, it's still a PITA since you apparently can't multi-select to delete.  Even though online guides say there's a Delete icon up the top, all I have is Install.

Yes, it's less than ideal, but it's better than what we had at the beginning, i.e. nothing. smiley
21  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: 2014-2015: Best tablet specs for ebook reading on: December 15, 2014, 07:58:48 PM
For your stated purpose, the Lenovo Tab 2 Pro is probably the best device available at this time, although for some of the reasons in this review, it would not be my ideal general purpose Android tablet.

You were complaining about your Nexus 10 weighing twice as much as your Nexus 7. This Lenovo device weighs three times as much. At over two pounds I don't think a person will want to hold it for lengthy periods of time.

I'd like to see them release a version of this without the projector and sound system. That would shave off some weight.
22  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: antivirus and web defense on: December 15, 2014, 04:27:16 PM
And for the Pro they list 2 years, 3-PCs for $60.  I would prefer 1 year at $30 smiley.

Steven, opportunity knocks. That same $60 will buy a lifetime license for 3 PCs. Offer expires at the end of the year. Use the software two years and you will have reached your $30/year price point. Everything after that will be gravy.
23  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: 2014-2015: Best tablet specs for ebook reading on: December 15, 2014, 04:23:49 PM
One interesting factor which most people would never think about, but has a great influence on the experience IMO, is aspect ratio. The iPad's slightly wider aspect ratio is a lot better for reading.

I don't know about that. I've tried reading on tablets with a 4:3 aspect ratio and find them to be unwieldy. Novels, magazines, comic books, graphic novels,etc. are not 4:3 so you're either going to have edges cut off or wasted space on the screen.

When you're dealing with smaller tablets, there are at least 1 or 2  decent Android options with the same size and shape as the iPad Mini. However, I'm not aware of any larger tablets comparable to the regular iPad.

There are tons of Android tablets with a 4:3 aspect ratio. You need look no farther than the Nexus 9 and if it's too expensive there are countless no-name Android tablets sporting that aspect ratio.

For me, though, 16:10 is best...of course what's best for me is not necessarily what's best for you. At least with Android you have the choice to buy the tablet with the specs you wish.

For those who are of the same mind as me, I'd recommend looking at the Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro line of tablets. 16:10 aspect ratio in your choice of 8.4", 10.1", and 12" sizes. All three sport a 2,560x1,600 resolution with an IPS screen. 2.3 GHz SnapDragon Processor.

If one is looking for something smaller, there's the Kindle Fire HDX 7 with a 1,920x1,200 resolution, IPS screen, and 2.2 GHz SnapDragon CPU but it's locked down pretty hard by Amazon. For someone wanting a more Android-like experience I'm really impressed with the 7" Asus ME572C same resolution and screen as the HDX 7, but with a 1.83 GHz Intel Moorefield CPU. Some say it's what the next Nexus 7 would have been if Google had continued that direction. Comparing the Kindle and the ME572C, color seems to be a bit more rich and vibrant on the Asus.
24  Other Software / Found Deals and Discounts / Re: Agnitum's offer of the Season on: December 15, 2014, 04:04:49 PM
I recommend Outpost Security Suite Pro without reservation.

I suggest to install the free trial and that will give one over two weeks to see how they like it before the special offer expires.
25  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Directory Opus 11 Released! on: December 14, 2014, 08:06:30 PM
No, I haven't had that experience. Check this thread for troubleshooting tips:

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