Jim’s WebLetter for 12/13/08

Hi-ya net-neighbors and friends!

It’s the weekend, and 12 days until Christmas. And this year, the deals are out there. All the stores are offering discounts. We stopped in the “Christmas on the River” store here on the island last night and saw a number of deals. If you need something to give you the feel of Christmas, that is the store to stroll through. They have a display of Jim Shores figurines at reduced prices. The one with Santa painting a toy soldier while a helper stands by and watches, is priceless (although there IS a price on it).

Of course, with just a few days before Christmas, this also means gift shopping is ramping up. Although many of you have already finished, or just have one or two gifts left to buy, there is still the question raised every year … “what can I get for ______”. I have found a new site that helps you answer that question. The Spotfire Holiday Gift Finder, created by the TIBCO software people, allows you to search through thousands of products, including apparel, electronics, jewelry and tools. The software lets you narrow down your choices based on price and reviews and then points to the appropriate spot on Amazon.com where the product can be purchased. It’s statistical-based, so you can see what the average price of gifts are, and how you can fit that into your budget. http://ondemand.spotfire.com/Public/ViewAnalysis.aspx?file=Public/Holiday%20Shopping%20Guide&waid=d7f7000b7b2ad47fd942f-ef39

Something else you may consider is Googling it. If you know what your intended likes to do, or say, does for a living, Google “gift buying for the writer”, or “gift buying for the one who has everything”. Along the same lines, YouTube, who is owned by Google, has such a vast library of videos now, that no matter what you want to learn, you can find it. “How to wrap presents” yields pages of videos providing step-by-step instructions. Incidently, the latest thing on college campus is using YouTube for tutorial instruction in Math, Science, and a host of other subjects, rather than paying someone to teach you. http://www.youtube.com

And speaking of YouTube, again this year, you can create a special Greeting Card using videos and send up to 25 friends. Just pick a theme, select a video, and send. It’s quick and easy, and who wouldn’t want to get a video card from a friend? http://www.youtube.com/greetings

In other things of importance, Microsoft says people who use the Internet Explorer Web browser are at risk from a variety of sites, as attacks seek to drop password stealers and Trojan horses onto systems. In a report from CNET’s Elinor Mills, Microsoft’s updated advisory lists a number of mitigating factors: Protected Mode in IE 7 and IE 8 in Windows Vista limits the impact of the vulnerability; IE on Windows Server 2003 and 2008 runs in a restricted mode known as Enhanced Security Configuration that sets the security level for the Internet to high; the attacker could only gain the same user rights as the local user; known attacks can not exploit the issue automatically through e-mail. The next patch release isn’t set until mid-January. I’m using FireFox 3.04. It’s not perfect, but it’s safer. http://news.cnet.com/8301-1009_3-10122203-83.html?tag=newsLeadStoriesArea.1

Did you hear that there was a birthday for the mouse this week? No, I’m not talking about Disney’s Mickey Mouse, I mean the computer mouse. It turned 40 on Tuesday. Douglas Engelbart first showed off his device to show how computers could be controlled in 1968, a year that saw Richard Nixon narrowly defeating Hubert Humphrey in the presidential election, North Korea seizing the US Navy ship Pueblo, and the number one song … the Beatles’ “Hey Jude”. Engelbart had clear ideas of how computers would help people. Isn’t it interesting that all the information about 1968 was accessed using a computer with his invention? http://www.bootstrap.org/chronicle/chronicle.html

1) You believe in Santa Claus.
2) You don’t believe in Santa Claus.
3) You are Santa Claus.
4) You look like Santa Claus.
1) Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional.
2) Forget the health food. I need all the preservatives I can get.
3) When you fall down, you wonder what else you can do while you’re down there.
4) You’re getting old when you get the same sensation from a rocking chair that you once got from a roller coaster.
5) It’s frustrating when you know all the answers but nobody bothers to ask you the questions.
6) Time may be a great healer, but it’s a lousy beautician.
7) Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
(thanks for both, Kelly)
There’s a little fellow named Junior who hangs out at the local grocery store. The manager doesn’t know what Junior’s problem is, but the boys like to tease him. They say he is two bricks shy of a load, or two pickles shy of a barrel.
To prove it, sometimes the boys offer Junior his choice between a nickel and a dime. He always takes the nickel, they say, because it’s bigger.
One day after Junior grabbed the nickel, the store manager got him off to one side and said, “Junior, those boys are making fun of you. They think you don’t know the dime is worth more than the nickel. Are you grabbing the nickel because it’s bigger, or what?”
Junior said, “Well, if I took the dime, they’d quit doing it!”
(thanks, Reggie)
Quarterback Sneak – Church members quietly leaving during the invitation.
Draw Play – What many children do with the bulletin during worship.
Halftime – The period between Sunday school and worship when many choose to leave
Benchwarmer – Those who do not sing, pray, work, or apparently do anything but sit.
Backfield-in-Motion – Making a trip to the back (restroom or water fountain) during the service.
Staying in the Pocket – What happens to a lot of money that should be given to the collection plate.
Two-minute Warning – The point at which you realize the sermon is almost over and people begin to gather up your children and belongings.
Instant Replay – The preacher loses his notes and falls back on last week’s illustrations.
Sudden Death – What happens to the attention span of the congregation if the preacher goes “overtime”.
Trap – You’re called on to pray and are asleep.
End Run – Getting out of church quick, without speaking to any guest or fellow member.
Flex Defense – The ability to allow absolutely nothing said during the sermon to affect your life.
Halfback Option – The decision of 50% of the congregation not to be there for the whole service.
Blitz – The rush for the restaurants following the closing prayer.
(Thanks, Michael)
And just when you thought it would never end, it does. That’s this week’s collection of things seen through my computer screen, JWL readers. Have an enjoyable weekend and until next, may God continue to bless you and keep you safe.

Jim’s WebLetter
Discover the best of the Web
C-my-site at http://www.jimonline.com


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