June 1, 2009

May - 18 2009 | By

Additional notes

Editor's comments delimited by < >

Google is coming out with Wave which, among other things, will combine instant messaging & email. More info is at wave.google.com .

How do you know if your spam filter is doing its job?
Send the following text — http://spamassassin.apache.org/gtube/ — to yourself and your spam filter (using Bayesian filtering) should flag it as spam.
If you go to that web page, you'll find a similar test for your anti-virus program.

Paul has a client who uses Outlook. Outlook attaches a file called winmail.dat that a recipient's Outlook program knows what to do with. Those not using Outlook will just see the attachment and not know what it means.
– Ask the sender to turn off message formatting e.g. RTF (Rich Text Format).
– Google 'winmail.dat defeat' or 'disable winmail.dat' for more info. <Disclaimer: use any software you find at your own risk>

There is a Mac version of Outlook called Entourage but it doesn't know how to handle winmail.dat.

You don't have to use the email portion of Outlook but that limits functionality like Outlook users mailing meeting appointments to each other.

If you install Thunderbird for your email it asks if you want to import Outlook stuff. Installing Thunderbird on a Mac with Entourage doesn't give you that choice, but see the above instructions, which are also echoed here.
More about exporting Entourage data in the show notes of 23Mar09.

The disclaimer: views & opinions are those of the show's hosts only.

A caller says he bought a HP media center computer but when he had problems with it, he received a loaner computer that had Vista instead of XP. He wants to know how to transfer the image of his original hard drive to the loaner.
– This may not be possible because the loaner machine has different hardware components that don't match the original computer.
– Using Maxtor OneTouch you may be able to install the OneTouch software and selectively restore just your data without restoring all of the XP operating system.
– Complain to your retailer that you were not given a comparable replacement computer.

The same caller wants to know how to digitally store the messages from his answering machine.
– Connect a microphone to your computer and hold it up to the answering machine.
– Use an ADA device. That's what's used by people who are hard of hearing and provides a line out which can then be connected to the line in of your sound card. Also known as ALS (Assistive Listening Systems)
– Use a Voice Over IP (VOIP) service, like Vonage.com, Lingo.com or Broadvoice.com, which normally store in digital format.

Brenda Horton is introduced. She owns and does the marketing at Hware, which develops and sells business tools (software). You may sign up to beta test some new software at Hware.com. Other shows featuring Brenda here and here.

Brenda talks about social media, which is different from email in that it's instant. It allows one to form personal and business relationships efficiently. It's like broadcasting to a network of people and unlike email, a response is not expected. Examples are Facebook.com, Myspace.com, Twitter.com.

On Facebook you can set up a profile page and a fan page. Search engines "love a fan page" and this is what's recommended for business use.
Scout out where your likely clients hang out and build your social network there.

Though some people do business on Twitter, mostly it's for informal socializing and building your network.

6 tips of what to do after you sign up on a social network site:
1) At first just hang out and get used to what the service is like. Don't push your product.
2) Be a helpful "solution provider" to build trust.
3) Provide some free, valuable or amusing content like 'will it blend', Such content may go viral, thereby reach many people.
4) Then you're ready to offer your product message.
5) Let go of control of your message. Let the online community decide what they like or dislike about your product and use that feedback to improve the product.
6) Use search engine optimization strategies like starting a blog so search engines can find you.

Also mentioned are the sites fixya.com and knol.google.com where questions are asked and when solutions are offered, the community rates them.

A caller bought a camera and a thumb drive to store the pics. He doesn't have a computer and wants to know how to get the pics onto the thumb drive.
– A library may allow you to hook up your equipment to their machines
– Buy another card <presumably of the type that came with the camera> rather than using a thumb drive.
– Buy a portable hard drive. There used to be one where you can plug a flash card into directly.
– Ask a friend to use their computer or go to a cafe that rents computer time.

Wolfram Alpha is a knowledge based search engine that's supposed to make sense to syntactic queries. <Its focus is on extracting answers from data sets. Visit the website for more info. Also, it supposedly has Mathematica running in the background so it is possible to use Wolfram Alpha as a CAS (Computer Algebra System).>