Categories: "computer/tech"

Free virus protection

I've been updating the computers here at the office and installing AVG Free Anti-virus on the computers that only had expired Norton software. I recommend this software highly. The virus database is updated constantly and it's free to get the program and always free to download the updates. Grisoft, the company who provides this service, deserves recognition for doing something to make the net safer (compare to Microsoft, which habitually releases vulnerable programs). So use AVG Free, and when you do want to buy some software, keep Grisoft in mind.

Linux modem

I finally found a modem for my Linux computer (the cheap winmodem in my old PC didn't work). Apparently old-school serial port external modems work best with Linux.

Mike Rowe Soft vs. Microsoft

"Since my name is Mike Rowe, I thought it would be funny to add 'soft' to the end of it," said Rowe, a 17-year-old computer geek and Grade 12 student in Victoria, British Columbia. Read more

Microsoft doesn't think sounds like a very good web site, so they're suing this kid.

Wish I was there

This is one of my favorite pictures from the Mars Moblog. I think it could make a cool title banner at the top of this blog.

The Answer

I worded the question very carefully so there would be no correct answer. I asked for the name of a person, but the poem was written by a computer program called Ray Kurzweil's Cybernetic Poet. Follow the link to see more poems by the program, and you can download the free version to run on your own computer. I tried it and couldn't get it to run. The site says it only works on Win95 and 98, which sounds pretty lame. So there's no right answer to my question and there's no certificates to be given out. I would like to congratulate, however, Dave and Brandon for finding out where the poem come from (and yes, google searches were allowed). Sorry to disappoint, but I'll give you something even better than free music: knowledge (ok, free music probably is better, so try this link).

I learned about the poetry writing program in a book I'm reading, The Age of Spiritual Machines by Ray Kurzweil. The author was been a pioneer in the tech industry. He worked on things like the CCD flat-bed scanner, text recognition software, speech recognition software, music synthesizers (the Kurzweil is still a popular brand) and in 1988, he predicted that a computer would defeat a world chess champion in 1998, he was one year off. So this guy is pretty smart. The book I'm reading now contains predictions for the next 50 years. It's very interesting, and occasionally scary. Click here to learn more and read some more recent articles from Kurzweil.

Tour my new cabin

This blog has a few features that make it more useful than my livejournal page. At the top of the sidebar on the left I'll be putting links to pages with information and files that I want to make available. Below that are some cool-looking badges that link to RSS feeds, mobile page and a link to my email. Below that I've got a list of links. This is something that LiveJournal couldn't do very well. The recent comments feature makes it easy to see any new comments without looking though all of the posts. There's a search window towards the bottom. With this Movable Type blog I have much more control of how everything looks. I can also do things like adding JavaScript if I ever feel ambitious. One of the best features is that I can give Sara a username so she can post on my blog, too. Let me know what you think of the new blog. The comment feature is similar to LiveJournal, but it is done in a pop-up window rather than a separate page. Thanks again to Brendan for helping me with this.


Welcome to my new blog, hosted by my very generous friend, Brendan. More as I learn how to use it.

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