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Comment: Get involved too (Score 1) 268 268

I have found getting involved is the best way to see how contributions are used. Have you considered joining a local civic organization that provides community services besides being a local bar for members only.

I found VFW has some chartiable functions in addition to their more primary function as a social gathering place similar to a local bar. Lyons and shriners have specific goals for childeren's hospitals and community support. Forresters and Rotary International seem to be solid with local community support along with Kiawanas who are big on getting the youth involved such as Little League.

I support Guide Dogs for the Blind and take an active part in their annual fundraiser and am a puppy raiser, a worthwhile volunteer project if you can commit the time nessarry to do it corrrectly.

Best advice is to see who porvides what services and what you want to support. Youth spots, emergency services, senior services, veteran's social services,childeren's hospitals, childeren's eyeglasses and hearing aids, whatever. There are lots of non profits. Some are more a business such as the Girl Scouts.than we care for. I had become good friends with a guy who's job it was to produce cookies for the scouts and was shocked at how much the wholesale cost is for the cookies. The scouts only get a very small portion of the sale price. Most goes to the supplier of the promotional material.

Comment: Re:Just take it in (Score 1) 479 479

A fast way is call on pretense of cancellation. Due to unreliable service and time lost on endless hold, I would like to cancel service.

A quick transfer to customer retention end in accepting to try a replacement modem, a faster tier, and a $10/month discount for 6 months.

Comment: This done right is a good thing. (Score 1) 130 130

I would love this if it was used as part of 2 part authentication. A card and phone must be present to make retail purchases. A stolen card would trigger red flags if it is used without detecting the phone nearby. Online purchases could be validated by SMS Pin. No phone, no Pin reply, red flag to the bank.

Unfortunately it is open for abuse which is the main fear uncertanty and doubt on the system. Did a little FUD stop Linux? It's source code can be seen by hackers and may be abused. LOL FUD all over again.

Comment: Re:Especially odd... (Score 1) 186 186

I've moved to SIP long ago.

SIP to SIP is free.
With a free DID number inbound calls are free unlike Skype in.
Outbound has many vendors and price plans unlike skype.
3rd party hardware is common. Panasonic, Cisco/Linksys, Grandstream, Snom, unlike Skype.
My free SIP account has free voicemail, multi presence, voice to email, conference calls, Skype gateway etc.
An INUM is standard
I have many PC & tablet softphones to choose from. Ekiga, Jitsi, Twinkle, etc. Some support video like Skype.
I can choose codects such as GSM, G711, G722, etc for low BW to high fidelity.
Not locked in to a single vendor.

Skype is the AOL of VOIP

Comment: My short list (Score 1) 258 258

I added a transistor in line wirh the voltage reference on a 24 to 12 volt power supply. With a zener diode and resistor that progressively brought the output up with input between 22 and 28V, I made it into a solar charge controller for a 60 cell 240 Watt panel for the motorhome. It worked great and closely matched the panel peak power curve keeping the panel voltage high for any input power. It has been running trouble free for a couple years now.

Not electronics, but related. Converted disposable Freon tanks into high power t shirt cannons for an engineering challenge. Free tanks counted as part of the bill of materials, where cost was part of the contest. I'm in the blue shirt with the initial prototype at the end of the video.

Salvaged a 0.001Mhz crystal osc to use in an electronics shop. Used it for a reference for adjusting tape decks for speed and wow and flutter. A free crystal audio reference was much better than a reference CD with a short tone track. It was mush more stable than any shop function generator we had at the time. In a pinch it doubled as a stable square wace source to use for TDR with a scope.

A Hall sensor from a broken PC fan coupled with a 9V battery and a couple LEDs made a quick magnet sensor to check relay states in equipment for quick troubleshooting. Coupled with a scope, doubled as a tach for brushless DC motors.There is more I can't think of at the moment.

Comment: Cable companies should offer value (Score 1) 160 160

Cable companies originally offered a larger seclection of channels which wre commercial free. I cut cable when they drove me nuts with time/life commercials and raised the reate from 12.95/mo. Haven't subscribed since. Netflix is eating their lunch for programming.

Comment: Re:why do people get this wrong? (Score 1) 74 74

I guess I get the 3rd competing story for how it most likely happened..

A man poisoned his cronically ill wife and placed more poisoned pills on store shelves to produce the doubt he didn't murder his wife.

Who actually did the poisoning was not proven due to the number of cases.

"As the tampered-with bottles came from different factories, and the seven deaths had all occurred in the Chicago area, the possibility of sabotage during production was ruled out. Instead, the culprit was believed to have acquired bottles of Tylenol from various supermarkets and drug stores over a period of several weeks, added the cyanide to the capsules, then returned to the stores to place the bottles back on the shelves. In addition to the five bottles that led to the victims' deaths, three other tampered-with bottles were discovered."

Source Wikipedia.

Comment: Re:Sneakernet (Score 1) 224 224

Phones, tablets and micro SD cards. What big brother can't see..

The ease of online file sharing has become risky. Other avenues are much less risky in a schoolyard.

My kids had no problem loading their devices to the max without using the home internet connection.

Comment: Another explination (Score 1) 52 52

This might not be an official function of the group anonymous.

Say for example a user runs a botnet and participate in Anonymous. I don't want to be found when the feds hack the server. Some users could simply be using the routers as an anonymous proxy.

This may have no official connection to anonymous. This could be the same as accusing Torr as being set up and run by anonymous as some of the exit notes log into the anonymous server.

There is a possibility this is real, but at this point is is mostly speculation, and possibly a smear campaign.

Comment: Re:$1 a month (Score 3, Interesting) 167 167

The endless list of horror stories of subscription cancellation woes has built up a very real online resistance to signing up for anything with a credit card. Even free as they often are a hidden free trial.

Having had the honor of first hand dealing with online ordering without just as easy online cancellation, has firmly entrenched the once burned twice shy response.

I can name names to be specific.

AOL, Comcast, Viatalk...

Until the industry fixes the locked in reoccuring billing subscription, all sign up proceedures no matter how small are potential fights in the future to cancell, and customers are burnt out dealing with it.

Guilt by association appplies to any service without a contract expiration date.

For spotify to leave the reputation, they should offer term subscriptions. 1 month, 3 month, & 1 year. No questions termination at end of contract. Then provide excellent service so I'll renew because they are great.

Comment: Re:first, don't let them put their shit on YOUR ph (Score 2) 776 776

Some employers can require on call engineers. The question comes down to salaried or hourly. If salaried and mandentory on call, then the alternate solution is to leave the phone at work for privacy reasons and auto forward to your Google Voice number. My GV account can ring up to 3 phones at once. This can include a landline, cell, and google talk. A VOIP line with some providers can allow multi presence. This includes a VOIP phone at home, a VOIP app on a tablet, etc. I can be reashed, but I don't have to give out my personal cell number to be reached.

My GV piints to a free IP Kall number, which goes to a free VOIP account on IPPI, which has free voicemail, free missed call notifications by email, and multi presence up to 3 phones. Solves my after hours contact number while exiting employer tracking. I can call in using Goolge Voice. I can be home, at a club, or in Disnyland and the origin does not show up, only the GV number.

The first myth of management is that it exists. The second myth of management is that success equals skill. -- Robert Heller