Keep your browser up to date. Are you using a browser that brings you the best experience? HTML5 has hit the internet and is changing the way websites are experienced, the only difference being that you may not be seeing the difference. Only browsers that support the new HTML5 code will see its content properly if at all. Here is how the browsers stack up:
HTML5 specifies a standard way to include video, with the video element.
Currently, there are 3 supported video formats for the video element:
Ogg = Ogg files with Theora video codec and Vorbis audio codec
MPEG4 = MPEG 4 files with H.264 video codec and AAC audio codec
WebM = WebM files with VP8 video codec and Vorbis audio codec
The audio element can play sound files, or an audio stream.
Currently, there are 3 main formats for the audio element:
As you can see there is only one company doing their homework and doing it to benefit you, and that is Google who produces the Chrome Browser.
The most important thing to remember is to get updates for your browser as soon as you can. Microsoft, Mozilla, Apple and Google are all making changes and updating their browsers to keep up with the new HTML5 code changes, however Google is the only company who sends you the updates automatically and is the only company making you and your browsing experience the priority. The latest version of the Chrome browser as of this posting is 12.0.742.112, however you can always click on the wrench and select About Google Chrome to see your current version.
Did you get your notice that Microsoft Secruity Essentials is now free? Back on Sept 29, 2009 Microsoft released their upgrade to the OneCare virus protection program that you paid a subscription fee to use. The new program boasting the label Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) is Free and you can download it from http://www.microsoft.com/security_essentials
The amazing thing I have noticed in discussions in chat rooms and forums is that it seems no one was aware of this and it has now been over a year and a quarter since its release.
Well fear not, just use the link I provided above. Its as good as any other free virus protection coupled with windows defenders firewall service, but there still is no substitute for a fully paid for virus and internet security program such as that of Trend Micro’s Internet Security Suite.
If you are the type of person that believes in using the same brand name for your stereo components or audio/video center matched to the same brand for speakers, then it wouldn’t hurt to install MSE on your windows machine. Sorry it’s only for XP and above, but it has a 32bit and 64bit version.
Now for a fair warning for all those people that have a pirated copy of windows on their machines, “Your PC must run genuine Windows to install Microsoft Security Essentials.”
I’m writing about this referenced article because it is a prime example of why software developers should be supporting and developing software for Unix/Linux/Mac operating systems.
Aside from the fact that Bill Gates and his engineers refuse to develop an OS that properly handles system resources, they still haven’t given proper attention to preventing exploits and security issues before releasing an OS.
Instead, a deadline is set for the release of the next version of windows, and then a mad rush ensues to meet that deadline at the expense of the consumers. The mindset of the Gates’ family is to get the product out first, and then patch the hell out of it later to keep in step with Apple and Linux.
This is a huge message to the public. First and foremost the focus is in the wrong place (on beating the competition) and second there is a reason why they feel they need to stay ahead or beat others to the cutting edge. It is because others are on the cutting edge first with an OS that is not vulnerable to hackers and those others have an OS that properly handles system resources and memory calls that far exceeds what Gates and Microsoft have ever offered…ever.
This is not to say Gates isn’t smart because he does understand that the only way to beat better technology and engineering (machine language architecture) is to beat them to the store shelves. Unfortunately the people that pay the price for this kind of “beating the competition to the line” is the consumer.
So why are software developers giving more attention and focus to Microsoft and their OS? Because they know that a profit is made from being first to the line, not from supporting a better architecture. Developers understand money in the pocket now, not long term investment returns.
What exactly will turn this tide of backward thinking in the software industry? The answer is in the proliferation of incidents like the cyber attack on the nuclear power plant in Iran this year. The more times an incident like this makes the news showing the vulnerability of the OS and network, the more obvious it will become to software developers that they are supporting the wrong system and shift to supporting a system that cant be hacked. Once they recognize they are on the wrong ship (the one sinking every year) they will gladly jump over to the ship they never have to jump off.
Until then, as a consumer who wishes to be rid of the need for anti-virus software and not have to buy a new computer every year that has a system that slows to a snails pace, and doesn’t want to worry about the information on their computers being compromised regularly, they have options like Knoppix, Ubuntu, and other unix/linux/debian based Operating Systems to give them what they need. Eventually consumers and software developers will be profoundly happy to have switched away from the chaos of Microsoft and the Gates family.
On a side note, Windows costs money, Ubuntu is free as well as Debian, and Knoppix and a host of other Open Source operating systems.
With so many YASNS (yet another social networking site) on the web, a Wiki for feeding your brain (not necessarily with facts), blogs and opinion/editorial sites, what is available for those who feel a higher purpose? Main stream media purports to bring you facts but instead they bring you biased speculations, circumstantial evidence and opinionated viewpoints while rarely producing any facts.
Google has stepped up to the plate to provide a venue for higher knowledge. The Knol. A knol is a way for people (not Google) to put their reputations and facts on the line, unlike a wiki that is viewed as mostly facts, but edited by the general public with or without verifiable facts. The wiki encourages citations and verifiable sources and provides a means to help promote accuracy and policing of the facts, but this is not 100% guaranteed as is stated in the Wiki’s disclaimer.
The Knol’s purpose is not understood by many, such as those that seem to think it is a market place to their wares as depicted by Will Johnson and his knol here.
For a better explanation of the purpose of a knol, take a look at this one. Maybe with a concerted community effort, we can help the Google knol concept flush out the “opportunists” and garage salesmen from its pages. Fortunately knols provide a star rating system, comments section and if the author allows, the ability to edit or collaborate on a knol. What tools are available beyond the star rating really adds to the credibility and reputation of the author.