main page




Rants & Raves Archives

Main | April 2001 »

March 23, 2001 Martin's Cage Dancing

Martin does cage dancing! Woo-hoo! Seeing that job fair for out of work dot-comers makes me glad that I don't work in the computer tech industry.

Brandon and Ken, the winners of the favorite computer radio show hosts contest, were guests on TSS. One is more talkative and energetic, the other, quieter and more thoughtful, jumping in when the other finally stops for breath. Remind you of anyone we know? :)

Patrick needs to adjust the y-axis on his Quake 3 benchmark graph. It should start at zero, not 145. Cutting off the bottom of the graph makes it look as though the Intel processor is twice as fast as the Athlons, instead of only 11% faster.

Posted by Christy at 02:01 PM

March 20, 2001 UPS

Good catch Pat. Tonight, Leo started a rant about how there were no UPS backups on several of the TechTV computers. He commented that "TSS should do as they say and not as they do," to which Patrick replied, "You mean like running antivirus software on their home computers?" If you didn't catch that one, Leo, like many computer savvy folks, does not run antivirus software on his home computer. I too, do not run antivirus software on my home computer. Why? It's a number one cause of computer problems, from system freezes to incompatibility with other software to shutdown problems. If you are the only person using your computer, and you keep informed about the latest virus and worm threats, and you know not to open executable attachments (of which there are many more than the familiar .exe extension type), then you are probably okay not running antivirus software. If anyone else is going to use the computer, then you should use an antivirus program, and keep it updated! I know from experience. Last Christmas, one of my relatives used my Mom's computer to check email, and ended up infecting it with the MTX virus. The virus attached itself to outgoing email to my aunt, and her computer was infected because she assumed it was okay because she knew the person sending it. That virus had been around since August, and the update to it had been available soon after. But my mom's antivirus software had not been updated for six months. I will definitely have to put up a summary in the FAQ section about all the stuff there is to know about viruses.

I agree that TechTV should have known to get UPS (uninterrupted power supply) backups on their computers. I live in the San Francisco Bay area, and I love the APC Back-UPS Pro 500 I bought two months ago. Overkill perhaps for a home system, but it was the only one with a USB connection. This allows the software that comes with it to shut down the computer in the event of a power failure, in case I happen to leave the house with the computer still on.

Landmark events of this episode: Pat coins the terms "ludicrossity" and "de-orbit".

Posted by Christy at 10:48 PM

March 19, 2001 The night the lights went out on the Screen Savers.

Tonight, TSS fell victim to California's rolling blackouts. Apparently they weren't able to recover sufficiently to re-air the show in the later repeat time slots, and they showed a previous episode instead. I knew there was a reason my religious taping of the live airing, even though I can catch the repeat if I'm late getting home. I hope TSS will put together some of the funnier bits and put the video up on the website. I enjoyed the interview with Jim Reavis of SecurityPortal, where he commented about hackers being highly intelligent, but with no moral foundation because they were perhaps neglected by their parents and instead raised by their computers. I've been fascinated by the psychology of hackers because most criminal destructive behavior is committed by dumber, less-educated people. But this is not the case with destructive hackers.

Posted by Christy at 10:39 PM