> chat > Sat 2002-12-07

Chat for Sat 2002-12-07 14:59:15

rich-c: test
rich-c: refresh
moved to room Meeting Place
changed username to George
rich-c: hello
rich-c: georeg
rich-c: oops. George
George: Hi Rich
rich-c: getting dug out of that snow now?
George: yes, we had 7.5 inches
rich-c: not a serious amount, then
George: for here it was
rich-c: geez, you folks must be awfully soft, then
George: we haven't had any measurable in two years
rich-c: oh, like way out of practice, then
George: true
rich-c: I'd hate to think of your collision statistics!
George: don't ask, it was a disaster
rich-c: even here the first snowfall catches out a fair quota of idiots - I can imagine your scene
George: a fender bender at every house
rich-c: and of course all the SUV drivers who figure they have traction - ha!
George: even the busses crashed
rich-c: big blocky treads that lay little rubber on the road, actually
rich-c: and when the road goes out from under them all they prove
rich-c: is that three tons slides farther and hits harder than one and a half tons
rich-c: and it's twice as hard to change direction on, too
George: i stayed in
rich-c: yes, that's the only intelligent thing to do
rich-c: we are supposed to get a dusting of snow overnight
rich-c: and I want to go to a computer fair tomorrow
rich-c: as long as I stick to streets that are transit routes they should be clear
George: we are supposed to get warmer but it's still 35 F
rich-c: that's OK, that's three over freezing, you'll be surprised how fasst it will melt away
George: even snowflakes are falling on my computer
rich-c: we are currently bang on freezing (0C)
rich-c: why are snowflakes falling on your computer, for heavens sake?
George: it's that cold in here
rich-c: why is that? dead furnace?
George: no, i have a snowflake theme
rich-c: oh, a skin or a screen saver?
George: but, the furnace only reaches 60F
rich-c: you must have been able to really identify with Guy on Wednesday, then
George: it's the aol desktop theme
rich-c: ah yes, aol - they really arent my kind of people, so I do my best to ignore them
George: everyone is coming out with skins
rich-c: a bit of advice: don't touch them; most of them are spyware
George: it's all over even when they say it isn't
rich-c: if in doubt, go to and download Spychecker
George: i don't trust it
rich-c: then before you download anything, type the name into Spychecker, it will query the program online database, and tell you if it contains any know spyware
George: i just assume everything is spyware and act accordingly
rich-c: you can double-check by going to and downloading AdAware
George: some spyware is undetectable
rich-c: no need, with Spychecker and AdAware you can tell what you're getting and kill it if you don't like it
George: there are ways to get around that too
rich-c: not really, because anything that tries to "phone home" will bring up Zone Alarm to warn you
rich-c: some stuff is tricky, like the "zupdate.exe" in KaZaa
rich-c: others will camouflage it in a legitimate function, like the Real Player tricks
George: i've seen it happpen with these programs things get through undetected and these programs have their own problems everyone is complaining about the not letting them in certain sights
rich-c: that sounds highly unlikely
rich-c: the problem if anything is likely to be the spyware going to unauthorized sites
George: i've heard the complaints
rich-c: likely from folks who dont know much about computers who confuse their own errors with malware effects
George: even at min. security setting they block sites
George: i talking about true techies
rich-c: doubt that, unless they are able to activate IE's built-in "net nanny"
rich-c: you are using Netscape, aren't you?
George: no
rich-c: IE?
George: yes
rich-c: well look in Tools - Internet Options - Content at Content Advisor
rich-c: if you click on enable it will block various websites
rich-c: no way I am going to play with it until I know how to get out should I go in
George: you have to IE with aol their software depends on IE
rich-c: I suspect it's set up so once a parent sets it, a kid cant change it
rich-c: oh, you can get NN to integrate with aol - after all, they own the company
rich-c: but whether the effort is worth it is another question
George: aol already blocks too many sites
rich-c: that's just one of several dozen reasons I would never even think of dealing with them
rich-c: my IS doesnt block any sites and takes as many newsgroups as he can afford bandwidth to service
George: it sill is the safest isp i've seen
George: farn dingers
rich-c: where aol is concerned, safe is not the first word thqat would come to my mind
George: it's also the easiest to work
rich-c: their version of IE is basically spyware
rich-c: and yes, they do sell the information they collect to spammers, too
George: never met a program that wasn't
rich-c: basic IE can be configured to give out no more than the minimum information needed to obtain a web page
rich-c: so can Opera, and it is much more rarely tampered with anyway
George: windows update is spyware and i use it frequently
rich-c: and the latest Mozilla is also very clean, fast and simple - it's only untrustworthy when they overlay NN on it
rich-c: strictly speaking, Windows Update is not spyware
rich-c: it does not collect information on its own and forward it to Microsoft
George: they collect information
rich-c: that is true, but only when you specificcally order it to
rich-c: Update merely takes you to the MS website where they will ask your permission to temporarily install a spyware program
George: what you don't know about what is being collected is important
rich-c: if you want an update you will say yes because there is no way to tell what you need without looking at what you have
George: exactly
rich-c: it didnt use to be so, but most folks now believe MS when they say no record is made or kept
George: and you need to to get these updates
rich-c: but notice, if they had spyware on your machine, they wouldnt have to ask to look - they'd know
George: i don't for a minute
George: it's a fact if you are online anyone can see you and get your information
rich-c: not me, they can't
George: i do
rich-c: there are things they need to know to display a web page; that is all my machine will give them
George: it is enough for many
rich-c: enough for what? I don't have a static IP address since I'm on dial-up
rich-c: so they know what browser I'm using, where to send the packets of information - that's it
George: it isn't required
rich-c: of course it is - every browser including different editions of the same one reacts to html differently
George: that reminds me i need to checkout some things
rich-c: in fact even in eight-bit colour, there are 40 differences between IE and NN in how they display
rich-c: they need to know where to send the web page when I call for it, so they get that mailing address
George: with a 2 ghz system it's nothing
rich-c: and again to make the page display right, they need to know which operating system is calling for it
rich-c: but, I don't object to the mailman knowing my address, otherwise I'm not going to get my letters
George: even 128 bit ciphering is a joke
rich-c: maybe if you're the CIA, but otherwise it is quite secure enough
rich-c: in fact in most cases, even 56-bit encryption is heavy overkill
George: no
George: nat at all
rich-c: of course it is - the reason is very simple
rich-c: it takes a big investment of time and effort and equipment to crack encryption
rich-c: if the returns are not going to be worth the investment, it won't be done
George: not with these new systems they are just too fast instant
rich-c: it costs too much to break 56-bit code for what a crook can get out of it
George: it was ok with a p100
rich-c: you are grossly underestimating the amount of computing power needed to break encryption
George: not really
rich-c: in fact if you don't have a NASA-size mainframe complex, forget about it
George: it's piece of cake
rich-c: so is going to the moon, if you have enough money and power - most crooks dont
George: you know it's cheaper to get a hdtv card than a radio scanner card
rich-c: having no interest in either, I really cant comment on that
rich-c: though I gather that scanners are seriously popular at NASCAR races
George: i am
rich-c: and I doubt I will live long enough to see hdtv become the standard
George: winradio has basic model that goes for 30 mhz to 2 ghz for $499.00
rich-c: other than eavesdrop on air traffic control and emergency services, what would I do with a scanner?
George: hauppauge has a dtv tuner for $199.00
rich-c: doesnt do me any good, I have a tv and satellite signal
rich-c: it isnt that I dont like techie toys, I just have to see them as being able to do something useful for me
George: i listen to police bands when people aren't visiting it scares them
rich-c: why? basically all teh cops are doing is holding business conversations
rich-c: most of the really sensitive stuff is exchanged by computer now anyway
George: too much going on it seems like a war zone
rich-c: in the first place, a city the size of Philly is inevitably going to have a lot going on
rich-c: also, the cops dont know when till they get there, but most calls are false aqlarms
rich-c: even those that are real will mostly be minor stuff, like break and enters
George: the volume still staggers the mind
rich-c: even "shots fired" can turn out to be pretty meaningless often
rich-c: I'd expected it more to bore one right out of his skull
George: not here
rich-c: well, Toronto's a big city too and the police airwaves are constantly active
George: with you it's races and football
George: me i like scanners
rich-c: yes, and both are over for the season, so I have to settle for games and chat instead ;-)
rich-c: whatever turns you on, just don't expect me to find them exciting
George: and hdtv is already broadcasting here
rich-c: in fact if I bought a scanner, I'd be more likely to use it to listen to air traffic control
rich-c: yes, we of course also have some hdtv broadcasting
George: i use it for many things
rich-c: if the information is useful to you, then make use of it - no problem
George: i had to take my new computer apart today
rich-c: bet you didnt really HAVE to, just invented a good excuse because you wanted to!
George: i hadn't noticed but the HD LED wasn't working
rich-c: I sort of fell you never really own your computer until you've poked around its innards a bit
rich-c: OK, that's a good reasonable excuse with good odds on your finding the cause and fixing it
George: when i first got it i had to put in most of the devices
rich-c: and you forgot to connectup the necessary wires for that?
George: the shop hooked up the wire backwards
rich-c: that's another reason for doing your own poking around inside - shops dont always get it right
George: i didn't know the wire was directional
rich-c: pays to poke around inside your software, too - never know what you will find
George: it's just a light
rich-c: must admit I have never seen or heardd of a directional LED
George: wel you got it here
George: it worked
rich-c: for whatever reason - but the bottom line is, it works, so dont knock it
George: you never know how important a HD light is till you need it
rich-c: I finally got p'd off and uninstalled my CD software, only to find on reinstalling that a part had been left out originally
rich-c: yes, it's often critical to know whether something is happening or not
George: probably a reading error
rich-c: no, once I got oput the original CD I discovered that there were in effect two separate installations needed doing
George: my HD is so quiet you can't tell if it's working
rich-c: it would appear that when I got the computer the shop only did the first
rich-c: yes, my fans are enough to deafen you, but the hard disc is very quiet
George: i have my own software so i'm better off loading it myself
rich-c: well, when I bought the computer the shop did some basic stuff
rich-c: mainly they put in the OS and drivers just to make sure everything was working
George: my whole system is so quiet you can't tell it's on by sound alone
rich-c: well, you can hear my fans going, but that's about it
George: i stuck on pc probe so i can tell if everything is working properly
rich-c: dont know that program but assume it's like PC Alert that came with mine
George: my other computer the fan is so loud it sounds like a jackhammer
rich-c: jackhammer seems unlikely - turbojet, maybe?
George: no the rat-a-tat-tat
rich-c: is it unbalanced, or fouling something?
George: i think it the bearings
rich-c: ouch
rich-c: that is what is known as expensive noise
George: still runs
rich-c: just be very careful very quickly if it stops running
rich-c: fried motherboards tend to be pricey to replace, especially with CPUs included
George: i'll hear the alarm
rich-c: meanwhile I am trying to find out if the BIOS on my laptop will support a hard disc over 2.1 gig
George: good luck
rich-c: well, I asked Dell if they could offer a size upgrade
rich-c: if they think they might sell me something, they will reply
George: i haven't had any experiance with notebooks
rich-c: they are teh next worst solution to being totally without a computer whgen you need one
George: oh no
rich-c: they are slow, they run hot, their screens are dim and hard to see, their peripherals are fragile
rich-c: their processors are slow, so are the hard discs, and the memory is no great prize
George: and you don't want to take them apart
rich-c: they are hideously expensive to buy, and don't ask what a replacement battery costs
rich-c: figure them to be $1000 more than a desktop of equal specification
George: get a gameboy instead
rich-c: gameboys are not good at surfing the net or editing photos, let alone running a spreadsheet
George: LOL
rich-c: as you will gather, finding a laptop useful and liking it are two different things
George: i won't do my serious computing in the feild
rich-c: we simply needed a coputer we could take along on trips
rich-c: if we end up driving out to Adamcon next summer, we will likely be eight weeks or more on the road
rich-c: and now that Frances has a digital camera, she will need a computer to download to
George: how long were you away last time?
rich-c: do you mean Adamcon or a major trip?
George: Adamcon
rich-c: oh, Grand Rapids is only a day's drive from Toronto
rich-c: we wre two days on the road, three at Adamcon, and an extra to visit Frances' sister
rich-c: Pamela visited her aunt going and coming so she used seven days total
George: even if i go camping with electric there is no way to get online no phone service
rich-c: many private campgrounds now offer internet connections, often in the laundry room
rich-c: also there are pay phones with data ports so all you need is an internet phone card
George: i usually go to state parks the don't have that kind of hook up yet
moved to room Meeting Place
rich-c: dont worry about that undefined, that was me coming back
rich-c: anyway, if you want to know the deal, go to
George: plus i would like to do it right at my site
rich-c: picky, picky, picky
George: yes
rich-c: isn't it enough to be able to send and receive your email every day, even if you're on the other side of the continent?
George: us old people have aching bones
rich-c: funny you should say....
rich-c: anyway, how do you think I got onto the chat at Adamcon when my ISP is in Toronto?
George: i fell like i'm a senior
George: you are in a hotel
rich-c: so do I, but then that is not surprising, I guess
rich-c: so being in a hotel in Grand Rapids does not get me a local call in Toronto
George: all you need is phone service and a local number
rich-c: right - a local number that is an ISP, and changes to another local number when you're 300 miles away next day
George: you mean your isp can't do service in US with local numbers
rich-c: I tried but their operation turned out to be sort of screwed up
rich-c: they had changed suppliers in Grand Rapids and didnt know who the new one was
rich-c: no, if I wanted that I would have to pay three times what I pay now and go on aol or msn or earthlink or something
George: at least aol would be accomodating in that way
rich-c: I would rather have my cheap, ultra-reliable, non-nosey, live-helpful local ISP
rich-c: and then get something like maglobe or slingshot or sprint prepair internet when I need it
George: i can get loacl numbers even if i'm in Japan
rich-c: I sure that's great - when do you leave for Japan?
George: as soon as Bush starts war
rich-c: in that case, you should quietly start edging towards the Pacific Coast now, and get a JAL open ticket to Tokyo
George: LOL
rich-c: the best current guessing is that the body bags will start coming home in February
rich-c: after that it is too hot for Americans to hold a war there
George: the UN put Bush in a box
rich-c: yes
rich-c: actually it was the sane leaders who did so when they said no UN OK, we don't go
George: thouble is if Bush starts a war anyway without UN will the UN sanction US
rich-c: still, when you are dealing with a sociopath like Bush, you figure he will follow his own compulsions
rich-c: no, I can't see the UN imposing sanctions on the US
rich-c: dont be surprised though if the Arab states get awfully awkward about supplying oil
rich-c: and realize he wont be able to use advanced bases there without UN endorsement
George: can the US do anything to get sanctions placed on US
rich-c: fundamentally I'd say not really - but I may be underestimating Bush's head problems
rich-c requested to ban <undefined>
confirmed ban
George confirmed ban
George: is the UN a puppet of the US as other countries say?
rich-c: test - am I still on? - if you see this, the answer is yes
George: yes
George: what happened?
rich-c: no, the US influence in the UN is very strong, but it is not a puppein fact the US would have a lot more influence there is they wren't so fr behind in their dues
rich-c: I got rid of the undefined, that's all
George: oh
George: what kind of glitch is that?
rich-c: I minimized chat when I went to check a url so it brought me back in as undefined
rich-c: I did a cancel but it didnt wipe the entry in the users list
George: oh
rich-c: so I had to use the mechanism in Extras to get rid of the "undefined"
George: ok
George: where is everybody?
rich-c: anyway, time is getting on, and the roast Frances is cooking is beginning to smell awful good
George: ok, see you Wed.
rich-c: the Slopsemas are away cruising, Guy and Ron had other obligations, don't know about our Quebecois
rich-c: right, see you then. Bye now
George: bye for now
rich-c left chat session
George left chat session
moved to room Meeting Place
changed username to rich-c > chat > Sat 2002-12-07
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