Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Middle Ages Tech Support

During the Middle Ages, the printed book was the new, confusing technology. I guess that some things never change....

Thursday, April 19, 2007

what's in a domain name?

Get your domain name while you can buy it at a reasonable cost, if at all. This article explores current domain name speculation and cybersquatting.

Domain Name System shows signs of stress from financial maneuverings: Cybersquatting, speculation hurt trademark owners and sow confusion online
by Patrick Thibodeau

April 16, 2007 -(Computerworld)- Cybersquatting — the practice of registering Internet domain names that poach well-known trademarks — is profitable for just about everybody involved. Money is made off of registration fees and advertising, and even the regulator of the Domain Name System gets a piece of the action.

But it’s not so lucrative for corporate officials like Lynn Goodendorf, who heads global privacy at InterContinental Hotels Group PLC.

The Windsor, England-based company owns seven hotel chains, including Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza, with more than 3,700 properties worldwide. Each day, Goodendorf gets about 100 e-mail alerts concerning potential trademark infringements from three different domain monitoring services.

Goodendorf said that in most of those cases, she doesn’t know the identities of the potentially infringing domain holders. Their registrations often are private, and when identifying information is available, it may be inaccurate. Subpoenas are sometimes needed to uncover the identities of individuals, she said.

Defensive measures, such as registering domain names that cybersquatters might target, can help, but only to a point. “We have tried to register common misspellings or to have letters transposed,” Goodendorf said. But it’s impossible to anticipate every name combination, she added, citing the cybersquatting site capitolholidayinn.com as an example.

Speculators Rule

As Goodendorf’s experiences illustrate, the Domain Name System is showing signs of being out of control. Speculators now use automated software systems to re-register large batches of expired domain names. They’re also helped by a loophole in the registration process that lets domains be tested for their potential profitability as pay-per-click advertising sites during a free five-day “tasting” period.
How Internet Domains Are Used

49% are "parked" on other Web sites, such as pay-per-click ad portals.
31% have been developed as functional Web sites by their owners.
5% are used to manage affiliate marketing and advertising services.
5% are set up to redirect traffic to other Web sites.
10% are used for unspecified “other” purposes.

Read the whole story on Computerworld here.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

how to paint the Mona Lisa with MS Paint

This YouTube video has gotten lots of attention. I'm not a big fan of MS Paint.... Clearly EclecticAsylumArt takes the software to the limit here and demonstrates the software's power – and the artist's talent.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

desktop email vs. browser email

Lately I've had clients and friends who've been forced by a "corporate merger" to use slooooooowwwww browser email. One switched to Outlook Express, Microsoft's free desktop email client; another got a faster gMail browser account.

Windows users looking for a "simple yet powerful email client" may find more than relief with Mozilla's free Thunderbird 2 desktop email software. Mozilla is the company that developed the great Firefox browser software. While I've had no problems using Mac Mail 2.1 to read 1 business account, 2 academic accounts, 2 personal accounts, and My.Mac account, I may check out the new version of Thunderbird for Macs. (Yes, email consolidation is on the horizon too....)

Here's an informative piece posted on Slashdot by Zonk earlier today regarding Why Desktop Email Still Trumps Webmail. p3net writes
"Shortly before the release of Thunderbird 2.0 RC1, Wired held an interesting interview with Scott MacGregor, the lead developer of Thunderbird. He presents some views as to why desktop email clients still triumph, even in this much-dominated web age. 'Some users want to have their data local for privacy and control. Furthermore, you can integrate data from different applications on the desktop in ways that you can't do with web-based solutions, unless you stick to web solutions from a single provider. For example, you can use your Outlook address book with Thunderbird. We'd like to continue to expand the kinds of data you can share between Thunderbird and other apps (both web and desktop applications).'"