Showing posts from April, 2011

New Nintendo, faster than PS3 and Xbox 360?!5792165/new-nintendo-console-debuting-at-e3-launching-in-2012-more-powerful-than-xbox-360-and-ps3  suggests current gaming consoles, which have been threatened with superior performance by PCs with state-of-the-art graphics cards, may be superseded with new consoles.  Kinda reinforces last month's news on the subject.

Acer, Gateway bad news

Here's a story which warns people about buying Acer and Gateway. Sounds accurate. 

I can't understand how any vendor of merit could fail to replace systems with the known defective bulging electrolytic capacitors shown above.

Epsilon Identity Theft and You

So, this careless outfit, Epsilon, let a huge amount of identity data get stolen.  It ignored warnings months ago. It's already appearing in identity theft, says the Better Business Bureau. Here's a partial list of corporations who gave your data to such a careless outfit, instead of protecting it by doing the job themselves:

Abe Books, Air Miles CA, Ameriprise Financial
Barclays Bank of Delaware, Beachbody, Bebe Stores Inc., Benefit Cosmetics, BestBuy, Brookstone
Capital One, Charter Communications, Chase, Citibank, City Market, The College Board,
Dell Australia, Dillons, Disney Vacations
Eurosport/, Eddie Bauer
Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry’s
Hilton Honors, The Home Shopping Network
Jay C, JP Morgan Chase
King Soopers, Kroger
LL Bean
Marks & Spencer (UK), Marriott Rewards, McKinsey Quarterly, Moneygram
New York & Co.
Ralphs, Red Roof Inns Inc., Ritz Carlton, Robert Half
Smith Brands
Target, TD Ameritrade, TIAA-CREF, TiVO
US Bank


HealthMap is a potentially useful website to keep track of disease outbreak, both animal and vegetable. Here's a US view showing most significant outbreaks (mostly measles, BTW) and there's lots of other views.

Flight tracking website

Shug is off on a business trip, and so I went looking for flight tracking websites. Found one which is very useful:

FlightStats shows trouble spots, and if you enter a flight, shows its location, with a radar map option so you can see weather problems.

Lots of other info as well.

However, to find if the airplane you're counting on for your next flight is late, go to, enter the flight number, and then click on Track Inbound Flight (circled in red below).

Blocking spammy websites

Weary of pop-under ads and general junk appearing when you surf the web? Here's a simple approach to tell your computer that requests for that spamware should go nowhere:

HOWEVER, a warning: Before you do this, make a backup copy of your Hosts file.
Adding these blocking entries to your Hosts file works with MacOS and Linux, just like it does in Windows; the location of the Hosts file will be different, and you will use a text editor program instead of Notepad.

More bad radiation blogging from LAST WORD ON NOTHING

I surely do wish bloggers like the one at would check their cipherin' with someone who knows somethin', or at least do the math. Background radiation cited in the eleventh paragraph of that blog post as 0.002 Gy/hr (2mGy/hr) is wrong, very wrong; off by three orders of magnitude. Please, everyone, suspect all the rest of the science in this article because if something so elemental is wrong, what else is wrong? The primary scientific source cited in this post would make anything generating a dose of 2 milliGrays an hour (0.002 Gy/hr) intermediate-level radioactive waste (page 5, the 1988 IAEA report, factoring for w=1 as is the case for beta and gamma at 2 mSv/hr) and require storage in packages ‘with 200 mm reinforced concrete walls’ (page 83, op cit). This post also does not understand the difference between exposure level (measured in Sv, mSv or uSv) and dose (measured in Gy, mGy or uGy). That’s Health Physi…

USAPhotoMaps freeware

USAPhotoMaps 2.78downloads USGS aerial photo and topo map data from Microsoft's free website,saves it on your hard drive, and creates aerial photo/topo maps with GPS accuracy.
What's New as of Jul 17, 2010 ...Click Here
Full Install of USAPhotoMaps 2.78 ...Download Here(565 KBytes)
(make sure the above date is in Help -About because your browser might send an older version/date from its cache)
Yahoo Group forum
Sample Screen
C source code