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February 1st, 2009 by Don

I had a machine go down in my home. It had on-board video and I was fairly sure it was the video card after a bit of testing, poking and prodding. They had a used card for the PCI Express slot, tested it in my machine, blew out the dust and cleaned up my memory cards for me (they had some accumulated dust), and I got out of there for well less than the cost of a new video card, $15. Pretty impressive. It’s good to know someone like them is right around the corner. So go try out Grand Prix Computer if you are in West Michigan.

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February 1st, 2009 by Don

This story was interesting. The US Department of Justice sets up phishing site apparently to test workers and see if they are practicing safe computing. Of course it was catch and release — no real data was released to the outside world, but I bet any employee who made the mistake of clicking through will regret having done so. Not a bad I idea I suppose, but if their system were set up correctly, their users shouldn’t be able to go phishing no matter what they do, should they?

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January 20th, 2009 by Don

When we do web design, many of our clients at first insist that hold on until we roll the finished project out the door. I often encourage them to put up a business card or brochure website immediately for one simple reason: it gets the search engine going faster. When they finally roll their brand new site off the disc and onto the server, they are surprised (even though we told them) that they cannot find their site in google. Don’t be surprised, it takes a few days to even a few weeks before you can start to see the site — and if you are in a jammed search term category, perhaps longer to see it do well on terms that are important.

Until you are on the web, they cannot find you, so get the brochure site up even if it is temporary. It will still help people find you. Do you need a temporary site to get you started? Give us an email and we’d be happy to help you. We can usually put up a placeholder site within a day or two using existing printed materials that you have.

Currently I am working on They have an interesting business. I toured it the other day. They are big into lean manufacturing as a culture. Everything in the entire place had a place and a purpose — no wasted movement is one of their key things as I understand it. They make tiny tiny little metal and plastic parts and once they get a run set up, they are able to simply leave and run the project “lights out” as they called it. I was quite impressed. If you need something small manufactured, I would encourage you to call them. I reference them because we have in fact convinced them to do just that, put up the site with some limited content in the interim while we work on the finished product.

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January 17th, 2009 by Franki

There has been a great deal of fuss regarding the Windows 7 beta release and how it may be everything Vista should have been. To see what all the fuss is about, I grabbed a copy and set about installing it in a virtualbox VM and having a play. Here are my observations.

It’s very polished for a beta. It looks more like Apple OSX than any previous version of Windows. It seems quite stable. It boots and shuts down reasonably quickly (about XP speed to my eyes) and uses an order of magnitude less system resources than Vista. However, all of the above points bring to mind one question: Vista was created after many many years of development, whereas Windows 7 was evolved from Vista in about a year I think. So why was/is it so hard to get Vista to perform like this? It almost looks like they released Vista as a buggy bloated waste of hard drive space on purpose just to make the next (much sooner) release look so much better.

When you think about it, Windows 7 has almost the speed and system resource usage of the 8 year old XP OS, it can still suffer from Viruses and Spyware, It doesn’t seem any more or less stable than XP (which was pretty good in my experiance), so I’m left wondering why people are singing the praises of an OS that manages to mostly match its much much older sibling? Don’t get me wrong, Windows 7 is a MASSIVE step up from Vista. Unfortunately for Microsoft, it’s only a minor step up from XP. It looks better than XP or Vista, it seems easier to use and more intuitive than Vista as well. (I’m so used to and familiar with XP that my opinion is not valid as to its ease of use)

: Well done Microsoft for fixing the problems with Vista, but why didn’t you do this the first time around? Also, XP has been a pretty good OS for Microsoft and for end users. Until something really revolutionary comes along, everything is going to just seem like an incremental upgrade of XP.

Windows 7 is a good looking, stable and solid OS, but I’ve not seen anything so far that would compel a tight fisted company bean counter to justify replacing XP as it doesn’t really do much extra for a corporate desktop. As with MS Office, Microsoft’s older OS products are going to become their biggest competitors, especially with the current financial crisis making everyone nervous.


January 11th, 2009 by Don

More and more I see stories where criminals are caught by technology. Two that really struck my funny bone this past week are the guy in Columbus, Ohio, who sent text messages to his stolen cell phone thereby luring the thief to come on down and meet the police instead of the girls and drugs promised in the messages. The other one I enjoyed was a thief who took pictures on a cell phone, unaware that the phone was also uploading his images to the real owner’s server. Should help with the identification of course and in this case the police recognized the thief. (I think this is a story from last summer). I have heard many more stories of phones being located, cars being located, etc. Maybe people should earn things the old fashioned way once again and then they’ll have nothing to worry about.

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December 7th, 2008 by Don

So I added a link to a business using Everything says it is live, and it may be because I can find it using my account link to it, but not their search to it. So the search isn’t live in my first experience. [okay on edit, it was there ten minutes later … so not bad really]

I clicked on claim this business and I could have it for a mere $10 it claims even though the video Scoble did kept saying it was $22. So maybe I’ll make $2 a year off of it someday. Which is it and where do you find it.

Last comment on them for the night, it asks for the companies email address … but it doesn’t explain if it will be encoded or otherwise protected from spam … will it gents? Or did I just doom this business to receive unwanted junk mail?

I do find this:

Ownership of data and your privacy

Business listings are compiled from a combination of publically available business listing data and user generated data. Brand names and trade marks that feature in business listings are used only in the context of correctly identifying those brand names, trade marks or owners to which they relate. They are owned by their respective owners and claims no association with any of them. All data and information present and entered into the Service becomes and remains the property of Brownbook Limited for the explicit purpose of providing our Services. We don’t sell our data, and we don’t spam you with irrelevant junk.

Guess we may be getting some relevant junk too, eh?

1 Comment »

December 7th, 2008 by Don

So I’m checking out the Scoble interview of

They pay only the last contributor and only if the business in fact “adopts” their web page on Why would they not divide the payment between all of the contributors? The first man in would be the one who did the most work it seems to me.

What am I missing? Dave Ingram and Mark Lyne see something I don’t. Help me out!

I just added my first business, The Jant Group where I recently bought some great window stickers for a sports team. I loved the stickers and they were very affordable. I was actually able to simply give them away to the parents because they were so reasonably priced, so this business came to mind for my testing purposes. Maybe they’ll adopt their listing and I’ll make $4.40 a year off of it … or will someone else edit it after me and take the money? I also ordered some vinyl banners from them. Pretty cool business, so maybe they’ll benefit from a listing.

They must have something going as has only been on-line for six months and they have a lot of businesses already listed (“22,346,320 businesses and growing”). Maybe this is the new facebook … I don’t really get facebook either.

Note: In re-reading this it might not be clear what I don’t get. I get the business listing part and the ability to review (or pan) a business, and lots of people will probably use it for those purposes. What I don’t get is why the last person to suggest/edit a business is the one who gets paid if a business decides to adopt their listing.

I’m curious how many businesses do in fact adopt their listings. I’m guessing not too many on a percentage basis. But from their perspective I suspect it’s about how many, not what percentage.


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</random humor>

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  Time  in  Don's  part  of the world is:   August 16, 2018, 8:11 pm
  Time in Franki's part of the world is:   August 17, 2018, 9:11 am
  Don't worry neither one sleeps very long!

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