Author Archives: Kathleen Atkins

Kathleen Atkins

About Kathleen Atkins

Kathleen Atkins is the Windows Secrets associate editor. She's also a freelance writer, editor, and photographer. Prior to joining Windows Secrets, she worked at Microsoft Press.

Stand back: performance packs a jolt

What happens when a couple of electrical-engineering students ponder music? If they’re Eric Goodchild and Steven Caton, they build a couple of giant Tesla coils to serve as their own private rock stars.

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Manage mail — and life, too — in Outlook

You might be among the millions who can’t live without e-mail — or your Outlook calendar. But whether you’re in charge of your tools or they’re in charge of you is an open question.

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How to pass an audit (of your computer)

You might be comforted to know that computers managing e-commerce transactions are typically certified. If a business accepts credit-card payments, its customers should know their information is secure on the e-commerce servers. However, Lounge member WaterBoyz is not in the comfort zone yet: his Windows 7 computer was audited — with the report that its port 111 is open to the outside world.

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Musical flash mob provides a pleasant interlude

When you’re out for a relaxed day wandering through local shops, nothing’s luckier than happening upon a live group of talented musicians — unless it’s when the performers happen upon you. This past May, members of the Sjællands Symfoniorkester (Copenhagen Philharmonic) gathered at the Copenhagen Central Station to perform Ravel’s “Bolero” — much to the evident pleasure of a surprised public.

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Take good Lounge advice: Be prepared

The Windows 8 forum in the Lounge is full of postings this week — the recent Win8 Consumer Preview release has been occupying a lot of minds and computer hard drives. If you’re interested in Microsoft’s next operating system, you’re likely to find lots of interesting commentary in the Win8 forum.

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Lions take notice of intrusive robocam

The big cats in Tanzania exhibited typical feline curiosity when a camera-equipped, remote-controlled buggy rolled right up to their noses. The lions were more interested than wildlife-photographer brothers Will and Matthew Burrard-Lucas might have wished when they constructed their wheeled photo bots.

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An average Windows user gets lost in Win8

Windows 8 Consumer Preview bloomed on monitors everywhere last week. Within minutes, bemusement set in.

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Readers with ideas write to Windows Secrets

Notable Microsoft user-interface features of historic and recent varieties prompted Windows Secrets articles — and reader responses. In addition, a reader offers suggestions on how to manage resource hoggery.

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Introducing the Lord Howe Island stick insect

A 1918 shipwreck on a South Pacific Island almost doomed the entire population of an indigenous creature known as the Lord Howe Island stick insect. Big as it was — as large as a human hand — it was no match for the rats from the wrecked British supply ship. It took a mere two years for the rats to finish off the entire population on the island.

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