Posts This Month
· Damascus-based site better than the Open Directory Project?
· Side note about Earthlink Total Access and Corel Photo Album 6
· Can you record streaming audio from the Internet?
· Western Digital external hard drive won't power down on Windows XP?
· Total Annihilation vs. Windows XP
· Kodak EasyShare program
· Symantec Integrator has encountered a problem and needs to close.
· Taking down Alexa.com site ranking boxes

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Computer Blog - thebroadroom.net: December 2005

Disclaimer: all of the following is purely from personal experience. TheBroadroom.Net urges you to use your own instincts, common sense, and willingness to take risks when applying any of the information below.

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Damascus-based site better than the Open Directory Project?
posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, December 28, 2005 at 11:36 AM (Pacific)

Just when I was despairing about TheBroadroom.Net--one of the few "women's sites" that bothers with the claim of being produced 100% by women--ever appearing in the Open Directory Project ever again, I found it!

Google Directory - Society > People > Women

At first I thought this was a cached version of the Women directory of the ODP (which directory no longer exists, seeing as there are no sites that fall under that category).

Upon closer inspection I realized that this was an Arab language site. Websy.com, apparently, is based in Damascus.

It's good to know that the Arabs are categorizing women's sites better than we are.

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Side note about Earthlink Total Access and Corel Photo Album 6
posted by Colleen Shirazi, at 11:26 AM (Pacific)

I see there is an update for the Total Access program that is supposed to fix a "serious conflict with Corel Photo Album 6."

Since I already unticked the "use Google as your default search engine" option in the TA task panel, well, I haven't bothered with the update, but it is there.

The easiest way anyway is to make Google your home page. I finally did this (after typing "google" for years). It's really handy.

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Can you record streaming audio from the Internet?
posted by Colleen Shirazi, at 11:08 AM (Pacific)

Why yes you can...just the way that you think you should be able to. What you'll need is a program that does it.

It is not quite the same as old style recording...where you would, say, connect a cassette recorder to your radio. Since you're using a computer, obviously the idea is to capture the audio into a file. Once you have the file, you can do whatever you want with it.

It took me probably an hour to find a free streaming audio recorder program that a.) was still there; b.) was still free; c.) still worked; and, importantly, d.) recorded more than 60 seconds' worth of sound.

All of the "try me for free" programs I actually downloaded and installed, were a waste of time unless of course you intend to record only 40 to 60 seconds of audio anyway.

Finally I came across two programs that worked.

This is the best one:

FREE Hi-Q Recorder

The free version has unlimited recording capacity. Naturally, some of the advanced features don't work in the free version. For example, you can't program it to record something later on; you can only record whatever you're playing now. The paid version is only $30 US so, I guess they figure if you do a lot of this sort of thing, you'll spring for that.

The second one is here:

Xstream Radio

This is actually a radio. Hence, you are limited to recording from whatever is playing on that radio. If you are also looking for an Internet radio program anyway, then you might want to check this out.

For your reference, both programs were found here:

Freeware Guide, Audio, Streaming Audio

Note: I have no affiliation with any of these sites or companies. I scanned whatever I downloaded for viruses and so forth but I highly recommend that you do your own scanning and always be careful what you choose to download.

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Western Digital external hard drive won't power down on Windows XP?
posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, December 19, 2005 at 12:04 PM (Pacific)

I have one of these...on Windows 98, it generally shut down right away after I tapped its little shutdown button.

I tried it out on Windows XP and the thing wouldn't just power down anymore? I got a tip over here: Amazon.com user review.

So, you have to hold the shutdown button down for five seconds. So far, so good.

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Total Annihilation vs. Windows XP
posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, December 14, 2005 at 10:39 AM (Pacific)

Mind you, I don't play Total Annihilation myself, so don't ask for any cheats. :D

But I am trying to get it to run on Windows XP. So far, it has crashed once...not regularly, you can still play it, but I consider this to be in the experimental phase.

So far I have found this article helpful: Getting Older Games to Run on Windows XP.

I'm trying it out (or rather, the guy who actually plays this is trying it out) running it in the Windows 95 environment on the XP machine, with all 3 options checked (256 colors, 640 x 480 screen resolution, disable visual themes). We will be trying out some of the other options (say, running it in Windows 98/Me mode) and see if there's a difference.

Other than that, the main suggestion I've seen while googling around is to keep a Windows 98 computer for the sole purpose of playing older games. :0

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Kodak EasyShare program
posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, December 12, 2005 at 2:28 PM (Pacific)

As much as I was ragging on Kodak in general--see previous posts on trying to get a Windows XP system to recognize my old DC4800 digicam (hint: don't try installing the software that came with the camera)--I've now used the EasyShare program itself.

It has a killer red-eye reduction feature. Most of the time you can auto-fix all your red eyes. When you can't, then, most of the time you can still fix them manually in the same screen. A few odd times I couldn't get it to work either way.

One thing I can't seem to make it do (and this can be done in the Corel Photo Album one, at least in the trial version), was get it to resize pictures as a batch.

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Symantec Integrator has encountered a problem and needs to close.
posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, December 07, 2005 at 8:21 PM (Pacific)

OK...so I got this message on a new Dell computer (Windows XP). I could open the Norton Internet Security program, but any time I started clicking on the options, it would crash, giving me the above error message.

As you would expect, I went to the Symantec site first. I went through a certain amount of nonsense...with the Automated Assistant thing...I got as far as downloading and installing a fresh version of LiveUpdate. It was also nagging me to unblock some stuff. Any time I tried "Do It For Me," the browser froze (and was a royal pain to manually close).

Getting desperate now, I tried the "solution" Corel had offered as far as their Photo Album program, in the post below:

Corel Photo Album 6 has encountered a problem and needs to close

In fact, I like it so much, I'll copy and paste it here too (current as of today):


Corel Photo Album 6 has encountered an error and needs to close.

Details

This article provides the solution for those who see the above error when attempting to view pictures ( in the form of email attachments, saved on the hard drive, etc.) or when launching the Corel Photo Album 6 application.

Answer

On your computer screen / Desktop you should see an Earthlink task bar. Do the following:

Click on the drop down menu (arrow) on the right of the Earthlink logo
Choose Task Panel Options from the list.
Choose Categories.
Choose Web.
Remove the checkmark from the following option: Use the Earthlink search service powered by Google.
Click Apply and OK.


Corel Photo Album 6 will now start normally.


As God is my witness, I actually tried this (mind you I hadn't even gotten past Norton to the Corel Photo Album itself).

So far (and I am furiously knocking wood) the Norton program seems to work fine now.

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Taking down Alexa.com site ranking boxes
posted by Colleen Shirazi, Friday, December 02, 2005 at 10:27 AM (Pacific)

Just a note here...we're removing our Alexa.com site ranking boxes.

The short version is that Alexa.com uses the Open Directory Project's subject directories. Thebroadroom.net was added to the ODP women's directory...after being deleted several times. I wrote the editor...who, apparently, owns one of the sites in the women's directory...as to why thebroadroom was not being added. Her response was that our site did not have enough content. (At the time, thebroadroom had a "mere" couple hundred pages on it.)

I wrote back pointing out that another site, containing three pages--I do not exaggerate, three pages--had just been added to that same directory. And that is how thebroadroom got added to that directory in the first place.

From that point forward, thebroadroom climbed into the top twenty websites in that directory. Since Alexa.com draws from it, thebroadroom stayed from #11 to #13 in the Alexa.com directory, for years.

Recently I was looking for a job. Since, for years, I'd been putting that my site was in the top twenty in the women's directory at Alexa.com, I checked back to make sure it was still there.

Well, I was mildly shocked to see that thebroadroom no longer existed in Alexa.com. I went back to the Open Directory Project to see what was going on, and discovered that the entire women's directory was gone (and my site along with it). Instead, there was a bunch of subdirectories, where, presumably, the sites that the ODP editor wanted to keep were safely ensconced.

On a side note, the ODP complaint form that I had used to get thebroadroom into the directory in the first place has long been taken down.

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