Aug 26, 2015

Aug - 12 2015 | By

Last Show Here

What’s with all this Flash Crap?

What’s with Windows 10? Should I Get It? then how to get my PRIVACY BACK?!

Internet and home network speed tests

 Psst wanna See Unix on yer MAC?! Try Terminal– Then try free MACPORTS

 How To Be Tracked by “Ten Best” type sites and “Do Not Track” requests.

Notifications of new show notes and edits are tweeted at:
– They’re tagged with #Zentech.
– When what’s said is unclear to me (or I’m unfamiliar with a topic) I tend to quote (” “) verbatim.
– Editor’s comments are delimited by < >


Both Glenn & Paul were in the studio today.

Talk of staying cool lead to a couple of observations…
– Any more than 12 or 15 feet underground the temperature, as miners have found, stabilizes and stays in the upper 50s for several thousand feet downward.
– Even in a crawlspace, as Paul has under his house, the temperature is noticeably cooler. The air there provides some insulation from the heat of the day.
– Paul cautioned that crawlspaces, especially in Nevada County, should be ventilated because of a toxic gas called radon.

Glenn highly recommended the Miners Picnic at the Empire mine that will happen this weekend. Even when there’s no picnic, it’s a good place to visit when the docents are present.

Eventually, talk turned to the early electrification of houses…
– In the early days, electricity wasn’t on all of the time. When it was on, it was used just for lighting. There wasn’t enough energy to do much more.
– Back then, you had about 1 to 5 amps available. Today, Paul guessed, 200 to 300 amps are available. <I don’t think house wiring can handle more than about 30 amps>.
– The original Edison power plants that were put into cities were franchises. They produced DC current that couldn’t travel more than a few miles. The more efficient AC current, promoted by Tesla, eventually supplanted DC.
– Today, some trains use diesel & electricity to produce power. The diesel runs the generators that produce electricity, which then runs the motors. Diesel engines run most efficiently in a narrow rpm range that’s not great for turning wheels. On the other hand, the electricity generated from diesel can be switched in such a way as to produce optimum torque.

Glenn reminded listeners that they can email their questions and comments to the station using the address Or you can call in at (530)-265-9555.

Paul thanked those who made the last Zen Tech broadcast possible. They were at the Nevada County Fair at the time. He noted that they went off the air for about 9 minutes due to a power loss at the fairgrounds.

KVMR broadcasters are increasingly using software for meant DJs. During the last show, Paul didn’t get a chance to talk about a free program mentioned in the last show notes.
<Excerpted from those notes…
Be your own MAC DJ for Free!|
Available for Windows 32/64bit and Linux, you aren’t limited to the Mac.
Download page…

KVMR has the ability to play audio from a playlist, but the DJ software allows more flexibility. You can preview a track on a playlist thru your headphones before it plays. Or you can crossfade between tracks or control the mic volume, etc.

There are many DJ programs available. Many of them work with iTunes and can arrange your music into folders named according to the artists, albums, songs, etc. There is a database created by iTunes called iTunes.xml that has this information and is read by the DJ programs. iTunes compiles the .xml file into a file called itunes.itbl for faster access. Don’t mess with these files, Paul said.

This is the 24 anniversary of the Linux operating system. It was designed by Linus Torvalds of Finland, but he wasn’t the one who came up with the name. He was given some space on a server for his files and a folder called ‘Linux’ was created for him. The name is a combination of his name and UNIX, a proprietary name & operating system.

Paul talked about the Flash player. See the above link.
– There are still many sites that use Flash.
– Glenn often visits a website that requires flash though the iPad can’t run Flash.
– There’s a popular website run by Jacquie Lawson who creates animated Flash Christmas cards.
– If you use Youtube, you don’t need Flash. They use HTML5 now.
– The Chrome browser is able to natively, internally play Flash but it’s turned off by default. To turn it on, Paul suggested you do a Google search with the words: flash in chrome turn on.
– Flash has been a vector for many malware infections.
– Flash updates have been so frequent and people become too complacent that it’s become easy to mistake an update link that takes you to malware.
– A better explanation of Flash problems can be found by following the link at the top of this page.

About Windows 10…
Glenn said if you’re getting a new computer with the option to download it, go ahead and download it. Paul said a new computer will likely have Windows 8, which many people don’t like. The sooner you can get away from Win8, the better. Win10 is not as bad as Win8 and is on par with Win7, he said. You have until the end of July 2016 to do the upgrade.
<There are several articles about the Win10 update in the show notes for the 7-29-15 show>

Hardware requirements for Win10 have not increased. If your machine can run Win7, that makes it a candidate for Win10.

Jeff called. He’s starting to look for a new computer, which he plans to get after Window 10 has been out for a while. He’s seen an all-in-one computer that has no keyboard. It was bigger than a laptop with a 19″ monitor. He wondered if the guys have seen such a thing.
– Paul said there are machines that use Windows Runtime. They are essentially tablets that you can use vertically. Microsoft pushed the idea of large tablets and geared Win8 for people who’ll want to use a touch screen.
– Personally, Paul doesn’t particularly like the touch screen, preferring a keyboard instead.
– Check to see if it has an Intel CPU and a regular Windows operating system, or if it has the Runtime Window (Windows RT).
– Glenn recalled that Windows RT can’t be upgraded to Win7, Win8 and likely not Win10 either.
– Jeff said the one he saw had Win10 on it. Paul guessed that it might be running a specially made Win10 — a Win10 RT.
<My understanding is that the RT version of Windows was developed to run on CPUs other than Intel compatible. You may have trouble finding the wide selection of software that’s available for the standard, Intel-based Windows.>

Glenn mentioned that Jeff donated some of his hair to Locks of Love. Glenn wondered how long the hair has to be to qualify for donation and asked listeners who know to call in.

Pam called. She has a laptop with Windows 8.1 and uses dialup for her internet. She hasn’t been able to connect to Yahoo, Google and some other sites because there is “no security certificate”. But if she goes to a wi-fi hotspot in town, she’s able to get to those sites. She’s been told that it’s because dialup is too slow.
– At first, Paul thought it’s not a speed issue.
– Glenn said, just by visiting those sites on wi-fi she should be getting the certificates. So he thought it might in fact have something to do with her connection speed.
– Paul backtracked a bit and talked about the extra time it takes to get redirected from to This is done automatically but may take so long on dialup that the certificate has a chance to expire. He suggested she test this by typing directly into her address bar so there is no extra time needed to do the redirection.
– Another way to speed things up is to use the mobile version of websites. Many sites use “m.” in the URL to take you to a simplified webpage that loads faster. For instance, to get to Yahoo try
– Using an dialup accelerator can interfere with certificates. Accelerators compress data at the ISP and decompress the data after it gets to your computer, so you get faster throughput.
– In you browser settings, turn off the loading of pictures. That will speed things up. You’ll end up seeing rectangles where pictures would ordinarily be.
– There may be a plugin for your browser that keeps the images turned off and allows you to load an individual picture if you really want to see it.
<Other things you can do to speed things up is turn off Javascript and style sheets (CSS) in your browser settings>

Caroline called. She’s using a PC with Windows 7. When she edits a photo in Picasa and tries to attach it to an email or post it to Facebook, the original pictures is used, not the edited version.
– Be sure you have the latest Picasa — version 3.9. Use the ‘Help’ menu to find the version number.
– Paul asked listeners familiar with this issue to call in.
– Paul speculated that Google, makers of Picasa, might want you to save the picture to their online service and use its address in your email.
– After you edit the picture in Picasa switch to Facebook (use Alt + Tab) and pick ‘upload image’. Now instead of ‘browse’ or Control-E, go to Picasa and drag the image to where it says ‘drag images here’. For more information, Google the words: drag and drop from picasa, or the words: picasa drag and drop images.
– Try the similar process for email. In Thunderbird you can drag the image directly to the ‘attach’ button itself.
– A good thing to know — often you can drag things to items on a menu that have names like ‘attach’, ‘open’ or ‘export’
– Paul said he’ll do some more research on this a post what he finds on the Zen Tech website.

For sponsoring today’s show, Glenn thanked…
The Cell Phone Repair Shop
534 Brunswick Rd. in Grass Valley
They fix cell phones and other personal electronics. They also sell used phones and pre-paid cellular.

Paul said that on the next show he’ll talk about the items at the top of this page he didn’t have a chance to get to.

Last Updated 11:55 PM 8/26/2015

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