Jim’s WebLetter for 1/21/12

Hi-ya folks!

This week, Apple revealed a new way of educating children with software that replaces the use of the many textbooks they now have to carry. They are iBooks 2, a new version of its electronic bookstore where students can now download textbooks; iBooks Author, a Macintosh program for creating textbooks and other books; and iTunes U, an app for instructors to create digital curriculum and share course materials with students. These programs, while not exclusive to, are designed to work on the iPad. Makes a good compliment to schools who are looking to cut costs while providing a better education for their students. http://www.apple.com/education/ibooks-textbooks/

Also this week, Jerry Yang, one of the two guys who founded Yahoo, has decided to leave the company he started some 17 years ago to pursue other interests. Typically that means someone of his background will be coming out with a new startup, or will join a major internet player. At this moment, we don’t know. One thing’s sure, Jerry was one for taking an idea and running with it – long term. Imagine thinking about providing a source for fellow college students to find study material and developing it into a working business model that shaped how we accessed the World Wide Web. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jerry_Yang_%28entrepreneur%29

And this week, Congress heard from millions of internet users that SOPA, or Stop Online Piracy Act, wasn’t one they supported. Consequently, it was killed. While it had a good purpose in mind … to stop content from being stolen, the bill opened up more doors than just piracy, making internet providers responsible for what people do on their Web space. Now it’s back to the drawing board for congressional members. http://mashable.com/2012/01/20/rip-sopa/

Finally, statistics released this week show that young people share their passwords with their best friends and love interests. Of course, those of us who know better understand that as soon as there is a falling out, those passwords become known to the rest of the world. And that is why it is important for parents to alert their kids to the fact that passwords are meant for privacy, not as a sign of trust with a friend. It is also important that the parent knows what those passwords are, in case a need arises. Just assure your teen that it’s for their protection that you know their password and that you’re not spying on them. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/18/us/teenagers-sharing-passwords-as-show-of-affection.html?ref=technology

One of my customers at the Department of Motor Vehicles wanted a personalized license plate with his wedding anniversary on it. As we completed the paperwork he explained, “This way I can’t forget the date.”
A few hours later, I recognized the same young man waiting in my line. When his turn came, he said somewhat sheepishly, “I need to change the numbers on that plate application.”
(thanks, Matt)
During my physical yesterday, my doctor asked me about my daily activity level, and so I described a typical day this way:
“Well, yesterday morning, I waded along the edge of a lake, escaped from wild dogs in the heavy brush, marched up and down several rocky hills, stood in a patch of poison ivy, crawled out of quicksand, and jumped away from an aggressive rattlesnake.”
Inspired by my story, the doctor said, “You must be some outdoors man!”
“No,” I replied, “I’m just a lousy golfer.”
(thanks, John)
So, there you go, friends … that was some of the things I saw on the Web this week. It’s the weekend … have a great one and may God bless you and keep you safe.

Jim’s WebLetter
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