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Tom’s Tips, Links and Tidbits Newsletter

Wednesday 14th April 2010

Hope this finds you fit and well and that you enjoy this week’s selection.

Regular readers know I sometimes put something up in this section to draw specific attention to it. This week there are two such items, both relate to the security of your data.

Just a reminder to be vigilant. One of my daughters had her defenses down and allowed hackers access to her email account yesterday. The result was ugly. I will pass on to you what I (belatedly) said to her - 1. As a general rule, never reveal your password to anyone. If they should have access to it, they do. 2. If you are asked for your password and are tempted to ignore rule one, call dad. (You can call me Tom.)

If you have Adobe Reader installed to read pdf files, please open up Reader and go to Edit\Preferences then uncheck the top box that says “Allow opening of non-PDF file attachments with external applications”

More data on the vulnerability this minimises can be found here: http://blogs.adobe.com/adobereader/2010/04/didier_stevens_launch_function.html

Have a great week!

Tom Grimshaw


Basic Computer User

Microsoft warns of major Patch Tuesday update

Covers 25 flaws, five rated critical. http://www.itnews.com.au/News/171753,microsoft-warns-of-major-patch-tuesday-update.aspx

Analysis: A dozen reasons not to buy an iPad

The comments are as good as the article! http://www.itnews.com.au/News/171557,analysis-a-dozen-reasons-not-to-buy-an-ipad.aspx

Google using speed to rank search results

Google is now using site speed as a consideration when ranking sites in its search results, giving webmasters yet more food for thought. http://www.itnews.com.au/News/171831,google-using-speed-to-rank-search-results.aspx

Flash evangelist tells Apple to screw itself

Apple’s attitude provokes angry response. http://newsletter.itnews.com.au/cgi-bin16/DM/y/hB4Tc0En4rp0PTM0SYKd0Ev

Microsoft deletes Aussie tech blogger's posts

Microsoft appears to have accidentally deleted six years of blog archives hosted on its free Windows Live Spaces platform belonging to Australian mobile technology evangelist Shane Williamson. http://www.zdnet.com.au/microsoft-deletes-aussie-tech-blogger-s-posts-339302269.htm

Anybody care to ask me why I prefer to retain control over my data rather than be at the mercy of someone else?

Steve Jobs’ trademark snafu could be costly

Didn’t realise iPad was taken http://www.itnews.com.au/News/172060,opinion-steve-jobs-trademark-snafu-could-be-costly.aspx

21 Things They Don't Want You To Know


Microsoft outsources IT to Infosys

Please help us run Windows. http://www.itnews.com.au/News/172117,microsoft-outsources-it-to-infosys.aspx

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Advanced Computer User

Horizontal Attention Leans Left

Web users spend 69% of their time viewing the left half of the page and 30% viewing the right half. http://www.useit.com/alertbox/horizontal-attention.html

A Useful (and free) SEO Analysis Tool

This is really easy to use, free and very helpful! http://www.reactionengine.com/

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Drug Interactions Could Prove Fatal for Breast Cancer Patients

Paxil (for depression) and tamoxifen (for breast cancer) are a very bad mix. The nearly 30 month survey found patients who took Paxil 25% of the time they took tamoxifen were 24 per cent more likely to die from breast cancer than subjects who didn’t use Paxil. Patients wh...o took Paxil for 75% of their tamoxifen use were more than 90 per cent more likely to die!

Those who received seasonal flu vaccines were up to 274% MORE likely to be infected with H1N1 swine flu.

Published survey refutes vaccination “wisdom” and exposes it as profiteering propaganda. http://www.naturalnews.com/028538_seasonal_flu_shot_vaccines.html

A Very Annoying Man

Dr. Wally Burnstein, D.O., annoyed polluting corporate executives, as well as people who could not be bothered to speak up. http://www.care2.com/greenliving/a-very-annoying-man.html

McGorry’s ’early intervention’ in mental health: a prescription for disaster

Pharmaceutical industry funded front man promotes early drugging that would lead to false positives and more suicides. http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=10267

Poisoning from prescription drugs is now the second leading cause of unintentional injury death in the U.S.

Deaths and hospitalizations associated with prescription drug misuse have reached epidemic proportions http://www.care2.com/greenliving/the-surprising-second-leading-cause-of-death-in-the-us.html

Doctor sacked from FDA after voicing concerns over cancer from radiation exposure from medical scanning

FDA staffers pressured to change their scientific opinion, by managers in the FDAs medical device division. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5h7r4QBWSM_SthqSpBRwSovDC8lcgD9EP48RG4

BPA hormone disruptor now contaminates Earth's oceans

Research linked bisphenol A (BPA), a common component of plastics and a powerful hormone disrupter, to heart disease http://www.naturalnews.com/028567_BPA_oceans.html

Are You Wasting Your Vitamins?

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition declared that these two nutrients in particular, along with certain fruits and vegetables could help maintain bone density in the elderly...and that’s just the beginning. I’m referring to magnesium and potassium. Make sure you get enough.

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Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement Negotiations Should be Open

Please check out this site http://publicacta.org.nz/wellington-declaration/

Human fossils found with Google Earth

The discovery of the fossil remains of some of mankind’s earliest ancestors was made possible by the use of data collected via Google Earth. http://www.itnews.com.au/News/171754,human-fossils-found-with-google-earth.aspx

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Video Links

A remarkable speech

by J K Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series http://brasschecktv.com/page/730.html

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Copyright© 2010 by Tom Grimshaw
PO Box 470 Glebe NSW 2037