Steal our links — no, really, we mean it

Brian livingston By Brian Livingston

This week, we’ve made it easier for you to send your friends and associates links to all the topics we publish.

You can even send your buddies — who aren’t Windows Secrets subscribers at all — links to some of our paid content.

The last section of our e-mail newsletter is now called Permalinks. Every link in this section opens a browser window focused on a different article. If you select a subtopic of an article, the browser scrolls down to that subtopic. (A copy of this week’s e-mail is posted on its own May 15, 2008, page.)

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The Permalinks section was previously known as the Index. Links in the old Index section merely scrolled to the appropriate location within that week’s newsletter.

Our permalinks no longer scroll in that way. More of our readers wanted an easy way to link to the permanent location of an article or subtopic on the Web. To scroll down to an article, use the links in the Contents section of the e-mail newsletter.

Back on Mar. 20, 2008, we began allowing subscribers with free subscriptions — and Web surfers with no subscription at all — to see summaries of our paid content. That means you can copy a paid-article link and send it to whomever you like. If they’re not a paying subscriber, and the summary doesn’t provide enough info for them, they can see the paid content immediately by signing up right on the page.

The Permalink icons at the end of each major article in the e-mail newsletter do the same thing as the links in our Permalinks section.

The Permalinks section isn’t a gigantic change, but just one attempt to make linking a bit simpler for you. My thanks to program director Brent Scheffler and our new program manager, Tony Johnston, for automating this feature.

Welcome a writer who’s read all over

Our newest contributing editor, Scott Spanbauer, begins a regular column of paid content today. He’ll be submitting columns two or three times each month, filling the space formerly occupied by editor-at-large Fred Langa, who retired on May 1. (Fred has big shoes to fill, but I believe Scott’s up to the task.)

Scott spanbauer As a freelance writer, Scott (photo, left) frequently contributes to Business 2.0, CIO, Forbes ASAP, and Fortune Small Business. He’s contributed chapters to PC Bible, 2nd Edition and That’s Entertainment, A Parent’s Guide to Educational Software (both 1995) and was technical editor of Jim Aspinwall’s PC Hacks (2005). He’s also written one tome himself, The No B.S. Guide to Windows 95 (1996), a book effort that he recently told me was “more than enough.”

Scott has also been involved with PC World in one capacity or another since 1987: assistant editor, editor, senior associate editor, and currently contributing editor. He began writing the magazine’s monthly Bugs & Fixes column in 1994 and then switched to writing its Internet Tips column in January 2000.

Scott’s column, Best Software, will concentrate on reviews of freeware, shareware, trialware, and commercial programs. I hope you like the new material.

Brian Livingston is editorial director of WindowsSecrets.com and the co-author of Windows Vista Secrets and 10 other books.
= Paid content

All Windows Secrets articles posted on 2008-05-15: