24 January 2009

Twenty-Five Years of Macintosh

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 1138

Lately most of the news about Apple has been about Steve Job’s health and the future of the company. However, todays a good day to look back at Apple’s past. Why? Because it was 25 years ago today that Steve Jobs unveiled the first Macintosh computer.

Since that time, a lot has changed. THe Macintosh has consistently stayed one step ahead of the curve when it comes to new technologies. The mouse, 3.5″ floppies, firewire, USB are just a few items that apple was early to adopt. Of course, who could forget the first iMac. Not only did it revitalize Apple’s sales, it impacted a wide range of consumer products. We saw brightly colored translucent plastic on everything from staplers to office furniture to floppy drives.

So, take a moment and relive the Macintosh introduction on YouTube…

15 January 2009

Back on the Apple Roller Coaster

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 0623

It’s been a tough month for Apple enthusiasts. A few weeks ago Apple announced Steve Jobs would not give the Macworld Expo keynote and that Apple would pull out of next year’s Expo. Besides basically assuring the impending demise of Macworld San Francisco it raised fears about Steve’s health. Then he announced that his health issues are related to a hormone imbalance and that he’s gonna be ok. The stock price rebounded and the masses were again happy. Then yesterday the roller coaster took another BIG turn for the worse when Apple released this press release.

Most people think that Apple fans like me are nuts for taking so much stock in the health and well-being of a CEO, but unlike most companies, Apple’s CEO IS the company. The company moved solely on his direction and ideas. He’s a complete totalitarian (I mean that in the nicest possible way!) who built the company, and later rebuilt it.

Hopefully we’ll see him back at the helm in a few months before too much damage is done to the company.

08 December 2007

Commodore 64 lives forever

Category: Interesting Links,Life,Technology — Posted by Michael at 2253

Commodore LogoYou probbaly know that I’ve worked with computer’s all my life. What you might not remember is that the first computer my parents bought for me many years ago was the venerable Commodore 64. With it’s 64 bytes of RAM we played games like Choplifter, Tooth Invaders, Clowns & Bruce Lee. I also wrote my first computer programs in BASIC. And should I even mention the Datasette? Gee, loading computer software onto audio cassettes seemed like such a good idea at the time!

It’s amazing how 25 years later, all of those hours sitting with my mom and trying to fix the syntax errors in the tapes my Uncle Ott would send her actually seem like fond memories when at the time we wanted to throw the machine out the window.

Yes, the Commodore 64 is 25 years old now. I still have mine packed away. I could never get rid of it. CNN has a great article about the historic anniversary of everyone’s favorite home computer. Read CNN’s article here.

11 August 2007

No Apple Key?

Category: Technology — Posted by Michael at 2252

Back when I first starting using computers in third grade it was on an Apple IIc. There were two keys on each side of the space bar. One was the open apple key and one was the closed apple key. The closed apple key long ago went the way of 5.25 inch floppy drives and monochrome monitors. The open apple key has however, lived on for a few more decades on the command key.

Then on Tuesday Steve Jobs unveiled the newest Apple keyboards. The little cloverleaf symbol is still on the command key, but the open apple was replaced with the word “command.” It’s the end of an era. It’s kind of sad.

Derik DeLong of MacUser thinks otherwise.

26 June 2006

Spyware repair

Category: Technology — Posted by Michael at 1957

I’ve long talked about the Michael’s Guide section of my site. It includes some instructions and tips on how to help you fix your own computer including an extensive section on viruses and spyware.

While I still believe that a lot of systems can be cleaned by end users, I’ve recently come upon a few systems that were so badly infected that there is no way that the average user could fix them short of reformatting the hard disk (which would result in data loss.)

If you feel you are in this situation, please contact me and I’d be glad to quote you a price on fixing your system. I’ll remove any spyware and viruses, install software to prevent future infections, update Windows with all current patches and updates and more. My prices are reasonable because I consider this a service to the computing community as a whole since infected computers on the internet hurt everyone.

01 April 2006

Happy 30th Apple!

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 1029

You already know I’m a fan of Apple computers so it won’t come to surprise that I think their 30th anniversary is a cool thing. Despite many woes over the years the company is going stronger than ever. Surprisingly, it isn’t their computers that put them in the great shape they’re in today, but instead it was their iPod. Of course, I never leave home these days without my iPod so maybe it shouldn’t come as a surprise.
Read the article at CNN.com.

27 November 2005

Generate Secure Passwords

Category: Interesting Links,Site Updates,Technology — Posted by Michael at 2234

I just updated Michael’s Guide to Choosing Passwords with a new service from Steve Gibson’s (of the Security Now podcast) site.

The following is an excerpt from Michael’s Guide to Choosing Passwords
A good place to go for a totally random password is GRC’s Password Generator (www.grc.com/pass). This website generates a totally secure, unique and random password everytime you refresh the page. It will generate a 63 character password. If you need a shorter one, just grab as many characters as you need.

23 September 2005

Cool Keyboard

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 1958

Take a look at this new keyboard. It’s a prototype called the Optimus. It uses OLED screens on each key to make it infinately customizable. You can make the keyboard display specific keys for any application.

Check it out at Gizmodo.

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11 September 2005

Another take on password security

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 0033

Never let it be said that I don’t give fair time to those who have differing opinions. In this C|Net article shows that at least one security expert at Microsoft thinks that writing down your passwords is a good thing because people know how to keep written documents secret. It’s an interesting theory, but I still stand by my opinion that you should not write down passwords.

You can read my opinion on the matter in Michael’s Guide to Choosing Passwords.

07 September 2005

2 New Michael’s Guides Available Now!

Category: Interesting Links,Site Updates,Technology — Posted by Michael at 1646

While the blog part of my site was down, Michael’s Guide was growing. I’ve created 2 new guides.

Michael’s Guide to Wireless Security will help you learn how to better secure your wireless networks. It’s amazing how many people just plug in their router and never set up any security.

Michael’s Guide to Choosing Passwords is a short guide on how to pick better passwords. Your passwords is are the keys to your life. Don’t leave doors unlocked because you chose a weak password.

Check them out today in Michael’s Guides

22 August 2005

Secure your computer the NSA way

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 1216

The NSA (National Security Agency, the government’s top secret decryption and code breaking agency) has released guidelines on how to secure your computer. They have versions for most major operating systems.

It’s pretty thorough and worth a read if you’re worried about computer security (and you should be!).

Take a look at it on the NSA’s site.

12 July 2005

Spyware problem getting bigger and bigger

Category: Interesting Links,Technology — Posted by Michael at 1240

Most of you probbaly already know what a problem spyware is, but here’s an article that attempts to quantify the magnitude of the problem. remember that I’ve posted some info to help you avoid it and remove it in Michael’s Guide.

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