Jim’s WebLetter for 8/28/10

Hi-ya friends! There are a few things to pass along to you this week that are worth following, so grab a chair and read this week’s JWL …

I know several of you have iTunes accounts because you told me you did, so if you haven’t heard about the latest scam involving iTunes and Paypal, you need to. BBC News reports that people have been getting ripped off because hackers have broken into their accounts and used Paypal to purchase and download iTunes material. According to Apple, “… if your credit card or iTunes password is stolen and used on iTunes we recommend that you contact your financial institution and inquire about cancelling the card and/or issuing a chargeback for any unauthorised transactions. We also recommend that you change your iTunes account password immediately.” Check your bank account or credit card account for charges and follow Apple’s suggestion. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-11065301

I came across this a few weeks ago and have been waiting to hear how it’s going to work. In an article from CNET, “The National Association of Broadcasters wants all cell phones to have FM receivers, citing public safety concerns, but critics say it’s a mere money grab.” Yea, I’m with the critics. I left radio years ago because the internet has so much more to offer. For the NAB to press Congress to make it official is just a ploy to try to keep a dying industry alive. Ratings show that every year, fewer people are tuning in. I applaud them for trying anything to protect their means of support (stations who are members of the NAB pay an annual fee), but in all honesty, if there is a song I want to hear, I dont’ need FM radio to do it, right? That’s what sites like iTunes, Pandora, and good old YouTube are all about. And as for traffic or weather reports, most cities are now listed on the Web with live updates. Sorry radio, as I predicted years ago, you are becoming nothing more than a feature on a Website. Click here to listen. http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-20014874-38.html?tag=topStories2

Google began rolling out a new feature on Wednesday to users of its browser-based Gmail service that lets them make phone calls over the Internet directly from their computer. There are a couple of things that are needed before you can really enjoy using this free feature; One, a microphone connected to your computer (this feature does not yet work on a smartphone), and, two, you need a Google Voice phone number. OK, it will work without the phone number, but it works BETTER with the phone number for such things as call forwarding and voice mail and receiving incoming calls. It’s easy to get a free phone number, just visit http://www.google.com/voice and sign up. Clearly, there are a lot of things Google will need to do to make this the best way to make free calls to anywhere in American and Canada and cheap calls abroad (sorry, you must be in America to use this feature, so far), but it signals an alternative means of making calls without paying for them, and that is money savings. http://www.google.com/chat/voice/

If you remember, weeks ago, I reported about four college guys in New York who were working on creating a Facebook-like program that when released, would be more private, secure and could be used by anyone to set up their own “Facebook” for their friends. Called, Diaspora, the four NYU students have announced that it will be ready to roll out September 15th. Why is this significant? Because even Facebook contributed to their cash account to make this project happen. http://mashable.com/2010/08/26/facebook-alternative-diaspora-launches-september-15/

A start-up called SideReel is trying to simplify the process of finding television shows to watch online. Listing around 17,000 shows, or half a million episodes, it sends its registered users e-mail notifications when fresh episodes of their favorite programs become available. Just register and search. When you find a program to watch, click “Track” and you will notified of the link. There’s no cost to use SideReel, as they make their money from the advertisements. http://www.sidereel.com/

A devastated-looking man knocks on the door of a woman known for her charity.
“Please, ma’am,” he says when she opens up, “can you help this poor, tragic family down the block? The father just lost his job, and his wife is too ill to work. They’re about to be turned out into the cold streets unless someone can pay their rent.”
“That’s the worst thing I’ve ever heard in my life!” says the woman. “May I ask who you are?”
“Their landlord.”
(thanks, Joanne)
An older gentleman needed surgery. His son was a renowned surgeon. The man insisted that his son perform the operation.
As he was about to get the anesthesia he asked to speak to his son.
“Yes, Dad, what is it?”
“Don’t be nervous, son, Do your best and just remember, if it doesn’t go well, if something happens to me, your mother is going to come and live with you and your wife.”
(thanks, John)
At age 70, my grandfather bought his first riding lawn mower.
“This thing is great,” he bragged to my brother. “It took me only an hour and a half to mow the lawn. It used to take your grandmother two days to do it all!”
(thanks, Diane)
A millionaire, a hard hat, and a drunk are at a bar. When they get their beers, they notice a fly in each mug. The millionaire politely asks the bartender for another beer, then proceeds to sip it. The hard hat spills out just enough to get rid of the fly and quaffs the rest. It’s now the drunk’s turn. He sticks his hand into the beer, grabs the fly by the wings, and shouts, “Spit it out! Spit it out!”
(thanks, Roger)
Have a great weekend, Webfriends. Look for the next edition a week from now with more of what people are doing on the World Wide Web. Til then, May God 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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