Author Archives: Keely Dolan

Error messages orchestrate beautiful music

Who could ever argue that Windows error messages and BSODs are things of beauty? No, they’re more often associated with a sudden rise in blood pressure and the overwhelming desire to whack your computer with something hard — like a hammer!

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Password security in Firefox and other browsers

Popular Web browsers will often remember passwords to visited sites — but at what cost to security?

Keeping track of the dozens of passwords we use is a hassle, so most of us blithely trust the password managers built into almost every browser.

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Proper massage techniques for aging opossums

Has your older opossum lost some of its spring? Does he or she suffer from stiffness and reduced flexibility?

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When is a script or batch file copyrighted?

Freeware, shareware, and independently written scripts fall into a legal gray area that’s easily overlooked by most users.

It gets especially murky with scripts and batch files as they are modified, combined, and redistributed across the Net.

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Untimely USB drive disconnect causes data loss

Even the most conscientious PC users disconnect their USB devices before it’s “safe” to do so.

Accidents happen — a hand reaching for a cup of coffee knocks out the USB cord connecting an external drive, and critical data get lost. It could even cause hardware damage.

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Household clothes-washer meets garden brick

Have you ever had one of those days where the bricks in your patio just won’t get clean, despite vigorous scrubbing? How about tossing those dirty bricks into the washing machine?

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No good dog goes unpunished in age-old melodrama

Avatar may represent the state of the art in digital moviemaking, but back in the ’30s, it was an analog world in which clever dogs acted out classic human dramas. It was quite impressive for the time — and good for a laugh, too.

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Perplexing print-preview problems with browsers

Reviewing Web documents with print preview can be deceiving.

Often, what looks fine in the preview emerges from the printer as a disjointed and difficult-to-read mess — if anything emerges at all.

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Dead language becomes dated placeholder

Although placeholder text has been used in word processing for decades, it’s rarely the subject of scrutiny.

Lorem ipsum is the Latin-derived placeholder text used by graphic designers and layout specialists. But in this age of sophisticated digital-document product, is it time for an updated version?

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Keep your computer cool in the summer heat

It’s the peak of summer, and staying cool isn’t just a question of comfort: it can mean survival.

In homes and offices without air conditioning, that fact can be just as pertinent to personal computers as it is to us.

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