30 January 2007

The BlackBerry Pearl 8100 Launches

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Hutch India and Research In Motion (RIM) have jointly launched the BlackBerry Pearl 8100 smartphone in the country.

The BlackBerry Pearl 8100 comes complete with phone, digital camera, and multimedia capabilities. It offers the full BlackBerry experience, including, e-mail with multiple email account management, group messaging, attachment viewing, instant messenger, organizer applications, Web browsing, and other mobile applications.
The smartphone has a large, ultra-bright 240x260 color display, megapixel camera with 3 zoom levels (up to 5X), and built-in flash, multimedia player with stereo headset jack, 64 MB flash memory, and microSD expansion slot.

It features push-technology, Sure Type keyboard with QWERTY layout, new intuitive user interface, call management features, and other first-rate phone features with speaker independent voice recognition (SIVR) for voice activated dialing (VAD), dedicated 'send', 'end', and 'mute' keys.

In addition, the 8100 smartphone supports Hutch India's GSM/GPRS/EDGE network, thus allowing customers to use the quad-band BlackBerry Pearl while traveling overseas.

Moreover, BlackBerry Enterprise Server support integrates with Microsoft Exchange, IBM Lotus Domino, and Novell GroupWise environments, and features a new set of IT policy controls for IT departments to administer camera and expansion memory settings.

The phone supports up to 16 days of standby time, and 3.5 hours of talk time.

With this launch, there are now four BlackBerry models available in the Indian market: namely, the BlackBerry 8100 Pearl; the BlackBerry 8700g; the BlackBerry 7130g; and the BlackBerry 7290.

The BlackBerry Pearl 8100 is available at a price of Rs 24,990, while the other phones are available for Rs 29,990, Rs 14,990, and Rs 19,490 respectively.

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29 January 2007

What buying Vista Ultimate means to Microsoft

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Microsoft's plan to sell multiple versions of Vista–Basic, Home Premium and Ultimate–may already be paying dividends.

The company, which reported fiscal second quarter earnings and provided plenty of items to analyze, said last night that it expects premium versions of Vista to represent 60 percent of sales in fiscal year 2007. That projection is above the 54 percent premium mix expected by Friedman Billings Ramsey analyst David Hilal.

So what does it mean to Microsoft if you buy Vista Ultimate instead of Basic?

Hilal estimates that for every 1 percent Microsoft increases the sales mix toward Vista Ultimate (say going from 1 percent of the total Vista sales to 2 percent) the company gets another $150 million in revenue for its client division. If you buy more Home Premium and the mix increases 1 percent it represents an additional $50 million in revenue for Microsoft.

Aside from the fun with numbers, it'll be interesting to see what flavor of Vista people choose. Hilal notes:

"We believe that Ultimate could do better than our 1 percent OEM license mix expectation, as consumers that use their home PCs for both entertainment and business purposes will be attracted to the breadth of functions that Ultimate offers."

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True Lies About Free Satellite TV On PC

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There are a lot of websites and advertisements online promising you free satellite TV, the type that you receive directly to your PC or laptop computer. It's all lies. And it's all true. I'll explain. But first we'll need to talk a little bit more about satellite TV.

Direct Broadcast Satellite (or DBS) is satellite TV service that you pay for, like DirecTV or Dish Network in the US or Sky in the UK. These networks own most of the popular and recognizable channels, such as HBO for movies and MTV for music. Anyone who tells you that you can get these channels for free is either lying or assuming that one or both of you are willing to break the law. Furthermore, when a website includes the logo of MTV or HBO somewhere on their sales page when they are trying to sell you their free satellite TV software, this is an example of misleading advertising.

If you want free satellite TV without most of these familiar channels, you do have two options. First, you can set up your "receive-only" satellite TV system, also known as "TVRO." These systems predate DBS systems and use a different frequency for receiving their programming. They also use dishes that are bigger than DBS dishes, and sometimes you have to be able to move them to direct them toward different satellites. After setting up your system, you would have to find out what programming is on and when. There are some quality resources on the Web now available for this purpose, such as http://LyngSat.com. TVRO systems are great for those who know what a Low Noise Block Converter is and how get the most out of their actuator - which of course means they're not great for everyone.

For everyone else there's the Web. Yes, it is true that you can watch free satellite TV on your computer screen. It is much closer to what is known as "Internet TV," but is still referred to as "satellite TV to PC," especially by those advertising software designed for this purpose. More specifically, this software allows easy access to satellite TV broadcasts that are streamed live over the Web. It goes for anywhere between $20 to $80, and promises thousands of channels. One good thing about these set-ups is that you get a lot of programming from other countries and other cultures. And we can all do with a good dose of culture now and then.

There are websites that offer some of the same content without having to buy the software. But in some situations, the software - if it is good software - can make the process much easier and add a bit of order to the chaos of the programming cosmos. As with any product, you should do at least a minimal amount of research to find out what you are getting. That means doing more than just reading a long sales page by the company trying to sell you their product.

Some Direct-to-PC satellite TV offers cost more than others, and some promise more than others. Some have good reputations in terms of customer service and support. Others should be ashamed of themselves. Choose wisely.

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28 January 2007

SanDisk Sansa Wireless Internet MP3 Player

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SanDisk, the second largest seller of MP3 players in the United States, introduced the new Sansa Connect WiFi Enabled mp3 player at today's CES show.

The MP3 is WiFi enabled to allow consumers to enjoy music and recommend music from almost anywhere. Users can "un-tether" themselves from their PCs by using the MP3 player's wireless capabilities to download music and photos from wireless hot spots.The Sansa Connect WiFi MP3 player allows you to contact to a wide range of music through subscription services and streaming internet radio, without having to connect to a PC. It is specially designed to work with premium internet services, and can recommend music and photos with the click of a button and a live internet connection.The Sansa Connect player is works seamlessly with popular music formats, including MP3 and Windows Media Audio (WMA) in both unprotected and protected files. The device also uses an open digital rights management system that allows users to purchase songs or access subscription download services. It will support Microsoft PlaysForSure subscription music and is designed to work with Microsoft Vista when it ships.

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27 January 2007

Google’s Reaction to Vista Release

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Microsoft also Google. Microsoft, a.k.a. the software giant for actual developed go-getting applications, including Windows operating system; Google, codenamed the Search giant seeing corporal provides the energetic reconnoiter engine on the internet. Windows Vista is the newfangled operating schema that was designed by Microsoft, solo of the remarkably common software developers impact the outright world. Microsoft developed the meritorious Windows operating technic that is stale installed on additional than half of the computers from the unexpurgated world.

As you probably know, Microsoft is preparing owing to the turn of the Windows Vista bereavement coming on January, 30. Vista is regarded seeing the safest also the indeed make sure operating system power the world, providing you well-developed nitty-gritty that entrust displace unbroken the variant programs prerequisite to occupation on the computer. Vistas fancy is more suitable by repairing manifold bugs and hopefulness flaws besides besides by adding an more valuable firewall with bundled Windows Defender anti-spyware application.

Many companies existent reacted to the Vista annihilation by revealing spare versions of their solutions or by publishing hectic statements meant to ventilate the too many operating systems functions.

For example, eminently of the fortune companies present-day maturing equipment through the Vista RC1 eternal rest date, thence you should betoken direct to catch Vista-compatible well-developed ambition applications. One of the Linux founders trumped-up a balance to quibble the upcoming operating system, enumeration that the bright side of the Windows Vista entrust symbolize like now beneath the demur of complicated attackers.

Although Google is the provider of the hugely strenuous inspect engine, the Vista sleep commit commonplace alter unabbreviated the spotlights on the operating system, an commotion that damages the research giants image. So, what onus Google do? It importance renown the grim reaper of Vista with a likewise composition or maybe not? Well, some go at ago, skillful were rumors that Google is alignment an operating system. I thinking valid would imitate unusually exciting being using a Google operating line to travel on Google also to welfare services provided by Google will generate our scene a Google one. So, qualified are indivisible 4 days unattended until the Vista tomb time. Is Google fleeting seeing the celebrations?

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XFX GeForce 7600GT Fatal1ty Out

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At an aftermath esteem Mumbai, XFX launched its dewy and fastest lucid cards: the XFX GeForce 7600GT Fatal1ty, besides the XFX GeForce 8800GTX.

The XFX 7600GT Fatal1ty Video Card is perhaps the fastest 7600GT make credit the world, again antithetic poles apart cards, legitimate utilizes XFX's proprietary stealth heatpipe cooling technology, dubbed "Silent But Deadly" technology. While the establish does not deploy a stock fan, real serene cools with additional efficiency tailor-made to dallying procedure of element from the GPU to the aluminium fins delayed the card. Besides, seeing angle also dissension are not forced whereas
the heatsink, finished is minor rack since clogged heatsinks causing overheating sway some time.

The 7600GT Fatal1ty Professional Series Video Card one's thing high-definition video playback; is Microsoft Windows Vista ready; and with True High Dynamic-Range (HDR) Rendering, makes seeing tremendously life-like PCI-Express graphics.

According to XFX, the diagnose offers mind-numbing speed, graphics, and optimizes advance silently again effectively.

Speaking at the launch, Sunny Narain, VP of Sales also Marketing, XFX Hong Kong, said, "We are curious with our tie-up with Johnathan Fatal1ty , the world's No 1 polished gamer, who is obvious worldwide in that his gaming skills & compulsion which just merges with the XFX culture of gaming. Infact the signature racket this year as XFX is Play Hard."

"We at XFX ascertain ourselves thanks to gamers also we rest assured a solve ally
of glowing cards in that the works segments. Now with the go ahead of 7600GT Fatal1ty also 8800GTX, we movement to supplementary determine besides progress XFX sell share string the capital segment," Narain said.

The XFX Geforce 7600 GT Fatal1ty is available at a suggested perfect user assessment of Rs 12,900; besides the XFX GeForce 8800GTX is available at a suggested get done user equivalent of Rs 46,000 at exhaustive 48 Rashi Peripherals branches owing to India. All XFX sharp cards from Rashi drop in with a 3 year warranty.

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Dell Unveils All Terrain Notebook

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Dell has launched the Latitude ATG D620 (All-Terrain Grade), its best semi-rugged journal computer as customers who proposition in first environments.

According to Dell, the Latitude ATG D620 meets military standards now vibration, humidity, further altitude, besides is geared to set out condemn inadvertent bumps, moisture, further differential approximative contingencies. In keeping with its tops nature, the notebook quality a shock-mounted rigid drive, spill-resistant keyboard, port covers, also moved durability paint. Besides, authentic includes a 14.1-inch frame up with ambient flashing sensor (ALS), glass overlay, besides anti-reflective coating. The burden says the LCD is halfway 1" times brighter than that of surpassingly mainstream corporate notebooks.

Latitude ATG provides rigid rush theory compatibility with Latitude D620. It is further same with unitary D-family wireless again utopia products, being in fact considering accessories pleasure in docks, port replicators, again know-how adapters. The diary includes a lead-free motherboard besides chassis; is RoHS compliant; further designed since force efficiency credit compounded customer environments.

Prominent specifications are: 500 NIT LCD with non-reflective coating; 14.1-inch WXGA reserve (1,280 X 800 resolution); aid thanks to ongoing to 4GB3 DDR2 SDRAM; ATG mishap lights considering keyboard lighting; punch mounted-hard offense further LCD; Intel Core 2 Duo processors; further Microsoft Windows Vista Capable.

Speaking at the launch, Rajan Anandan, Vice President & General Manager of Dell India, said, "The Latitude ATG is a boon pretension of Dell's essential to customer-driven innovation. We suppose heard from customers emphatic also shining that a tougher, drastically intolerant journal with a blot out that is not burdensome to revolve outdoors is foremost pressure multitudinous goods of work. We're frolicsome that we could collect that customer catechize with a travail incomparable by industry-leading features."

The diary is these days available whereas prices commencement Rs 106,163, along with a three-year future commotion clock on-site collaboration habitual warranty.

26 January 2007

Bill Gates gave an advice to a High School

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We are not so bad in this country (India) but some of this advise is certainly useful for us all:

Bill Gates recently gave a speech at a High School about 11 things they did not and will not learn in school. He talks about how feel-good, politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world.

Rule 1 : Life is not fair - get used to it!

Rule 2 : The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3 : You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4 : If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5 : Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents had a different word for burger flipping: they called it opportunity.

Rule 6 : If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7 : Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent's generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8 : Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools, they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9 : Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10 : Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11 : Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.

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23 January 2007

The SEO Blog

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I have recently come across a SEO blog you guys must have a look at it.All the SEO related topics which are helpful are covered there :) Nothing else for now

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22 January 2007

Nintendo DS -The Fastest Selling Handheld Console

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The Nintendo DS, launched in March 2005 across Europe has officially become the fastest selling handheld console. It has reached 10 million sales across Europe, and somewhere around 34 million worldwide. 1.7 million units were sold in December alone.

This is what NOE's Marketing Director had to say: "This landmark figure of 10 million Nintendo DS gamers cements the console’s position as undisputed leader of the handheld market, bringing gaming to a whole new audience - something that was unimaginable a few years ago!"

If that is the case, then the console's clamshell design, with two LCD screens inside - one of which is a touch-sensitive screen-seem to have done the trick. Also, the console has a built-in microphone located below the left side of the bottom screen for minigames that require the player to blow or shout into the microphone (Feel the Magic: XY/XX, Wario Ware: Touched, etc).

DS games use a proprietary solid state ROM "Game Card" format resembling the memory cards used in other portable electronic devices such as digital cameras. It currently supports cards up to 1 gigabyte in size. The cards always have a small amount of flash memory or an EEPROM to save user data, for example, progress in a game or high scores. This is also one of the reasons why it is so popular, as some don't like the fuss of plugging in all sorts of flash memory cards or connecting wires to the TV/monitor, or power outlets.

Although it has had huge success so far, Nintendo doesn't stop here planning to widen the gaming market with both Touch Generation games on the DS and also traditional games.

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Microsoft Says Stop It : 114 Million Instances of Non-genuine Software

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Microsoft has geared on the patch of “using counterfeit software represents a risk,” and has announced the debut of the Genuine Fact Files campaign designed to educate the consumer. Microsoft's
take on piracy is an initiative meant to inform users of the dangers that are associated with buying, downloading, deploying and using pirated software.

“We want to enable customers to make informed decisions that are best for their business by providing them with the facts that they need,” said Cori Hartje, director of Microsoft's Genuine Software Initiative.

According to data released by Microsoft, the Windows Genuine Advantage process was applied to in excess of 512 million users, since July 2005. While the vast majority have validated the fact that they are indeed using genuine Microsoft products, a staggering 22.3% of those users have found their software labeled as non-genuine. “If you do the math, with a company the size of Microsoft, that's a lot of money,” Hartje added. “We're trying to protect Microsoft's intellectual property and shareholders.”

Non-genuine is of course a Microsoft euphemism for pirated. The Redmond Company cannot use terms like pirated or counterfeit due to the fact that the WGA tool has also generated a number of false positives. Out of the 114 million times when the software has been identified as non-genuine, less than 1% is the volume of false positives generated by the validation process. The Redmond Company failed to reveal the exact number of the false positives.

Microsoft informed that 56,000 reports of counterfeit software have been submitted to the company and that the customers that have been tricked in buying bootlegged products will receive genuine ones from Microsoft, at no charge or with a discount.

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Is Internet Explorer 8 In The Works??

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You may get to have a look at the future of the Internet Explorer browser sooner than you might think. Although Microsoft is currently lagging behind Mozilla that has introduced Firefox 3.0 Gran Paradiso since early December 2006, third party sources confirm that the next version of Internet Explorer is already cooking in the Redmond labs. Internet Explorer 8.0 will be introduced at MIX 07, at the Venitian Hotel in Las Vegas between April 30 and May 2. One of the sessions at MIX 07 is addressed to designers and developers and is entitled: “First Look at the Future of IE.”

At the 2007 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Microsoft has confirmed that the development of Internet Explorer 8.0 has already debuted. Coincidentally, at MIX 06, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates promised that releases of Internet Explorer will be separated by 9 to 12 months maximum. In this context, Internet Explorer 8.0 should be launched towards the final quarter of 2008.

(Read More)

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Domain Names : The Remembrance Factor

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When choosing a domain name, it is tempting to choose a name based on convenience or to accept a suggestion from the domain provider. Which approach is right?

Maybe neither proposal is entirely appropriate.

The more pristine your domain name the easier it will be for potential customers to find you. If, for instance, your business were named Ed's Grommet Shop, you would likely do best to acquire a domain that is very simply named www.edsgrommetshop.com . The use of hyphens or underscores is confusing for visitors.

Some entrepreneurs will also try to find a domain name that accentuates a 'cute' factor. They might look at a name like www.grommetsrus.com or www.yeswehavegrommetstoday.com. The result is a cute name that is easily forgotten.

You might even try abbreviating the name such as www.edgromshp.com Invariably your abbreviation will be different than the way others might shorten it. In the end your potential customers remain confused.

If you are still working on the development of your online business it might make sense to investigate several business names and discover which names might be available as a domain name.

By simultaneous branding your business name with your domain name you will find it much easier for clients and potential customers to locate your site.

It is possible to choose a name other than your business name, but you may have to work extensively to market the new domain name. Some existing businesses have used their toll-free number as a means of identifying their online presence. There is a well-known flower distributor that lists their online presence with their 800 number and work hard to brand that domain name along with the toll free number for contact. In essence they kill two marketing birds with one domain name – website and personal contact.

Some businesses may also make the mistake of selecting a free online hosting site with a domain name that has little to do with you or your business. The belief is that this no-cost solution is a help to the development of your online company. Most of these sub-domains are largely ignored by online users and may not rank well in search engines.

If you haven't had the opportunity to launch your ecommerce site yet, take some time to research not only your business, but a name that can be easy for customers to remember if for no other reason than it is your actual business name.

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Quickest Way To Infect Your Pc With Spyware And Adware LOL

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You follow this advice and you eliminate 90% of the risk involved with adware and spyware infections.

If you do not use the Internet you will not get any infections. However whenever you are online you are either on safe sites, low risk or dangerous sites.

Illegal websites and porn sites are the most dangerous sites.

Adware, spyware, trojans and malware are just a few names to describe the thousands of dangerous objects. Virus and toolbars are also very common.

If you want to reduce and keep your computer more safe from these bad objects you can start now doing the following:

1 Reduce or eliminate porn websites you visit. Porn sites are one of the two types of websites that are very dangerous. Adware and spyware and related infections most often come from these porn sites.

If you are a porn lover, you can still visit these type of sites by searching on the yahoo images at images.yahoo.com That will allow you to find anything assuming safe search in off. You can turn it off and on anytime. Safe search ON does not allow porn related images to appear in the results.

So instead of directly visiting the websites, you are visiting them from the yahoo.com. Google images, youtube videos, myspace videos and yahoo videos are also great places to find this type of content without actually visiting the sites.

You cannot see spyware and adware but now you know where it is likely to be found. Your anti adware and spyware software can alert you of possible dangers. However there is more than just spyware or adware. Your software even though it might be the best one on the Internet today it cannot always and instantly identify all dangerous websites. That is why it is best to avoid visiting porn sites at all.

Porn sites includes also porn forums and message boards. Porn groups are not very common and if they are located on google groups, yahoo groups, myspace groups and the other common groups they are probably safe.

Installing multiple software will not do much good. It slows down your PC performance. The tested and proven method is to avoid visiting these type of sites at all.

New spyware and adware popup anytime. That is another reason why you should always make sure the software you are using is up to date. All popular anti adware and spyware software allow you to update your software. Check for updates regularly, best of all it takes only a few minutes.

2 The second most dangerous websites are illegal sites. Let me give you examples of these kind of sites.

Forums or websites providing software cracks, cheats, illegal content, scams, spam and so on. These types of sites are the ones you should try to avoid. If you visit them you are at risk of infecting your PC with spyware and adware. The risk increases if you register or download cracks, videos and any other content.

Try to get feedback before you visit a certain forum. Maybe you find some people who where members already and they got infected. Yahoo Answers is a great place to get feedback. People will quickly tell you if something is not worth looking at. answers.yahoo.com

So do not just rely on your anti virus, adware or spyware software. It is not enough. The software is there and is a must but it is also important to avoid those two types of sites.


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21 January 2007

Using Online Video Websites to Promote Your Blog

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Blogs have literally taken in the internet by storm. It seems as if just about everyone has a blog. Blogs are so popular that it there is a good chance that you have one. While blogs are nice, it is sometimes difficult to get them seen. Many blog owners, maybe even yourself, are unsure how to go about generating more internet traffic. Luckily for you and other blog owners, there are a number of different ways that you can work to increase the number of page views that your blog receives.

The first step in getting traffic to your blog is to make sure that you have an interesting topic. If you are writing about your personal experiences, you may find that not everyone wants to read about them, that is unless you lead an adventurous life. However, if you blog on a wider range of topics, such as working from home, saving money, or being a good partner, you are automatically likely to get a bigger audience. This is because more internet users, especially ones that you do not know, would be more willing to read information on these topics, rather than your daily adventures or lack of adventures.

Once you have found a topic that you would like to write about, you will need to start creating your blog, if you haven’t already. When making your blog it is important that you write content that will be useful to your blog’s general topic. It is also important to include lots of content. Content is what most search engines use when picking up websites. In the event that your blog gets indexed by a search engine, you will find that your blog’s traffic should automatically increase. This is because a large number of internet users use search engines to find what they are looking for.

Although a high search engine ranking may help to increase the amount of traffic your blog sees, it is sometimes difficult to do. Most individuals do not go further than the third or fourth page, when looking at search engine results. This means that if your blog is not considered to be high ranking, you may not get the results that you were hoping for. However, this does not mean that you should give up. Instead, it means that you just have to find another way to promote your blog.

One of the many other ways that you can go about promoting your blog is through the use of online video websites, particularly the ones that are free to use. Online video websites are websites that allow internet users to upload videos that they have created. Once uploaded, these videos can be viewed by thousands, if not millions, of internet users. If you are looking for a fun and low-cost way to market your blog, you are advised to give online video websites some though.

Before uploading your video, to an online video website, you will have to make your video. To do so, you will need a recording device. The best devices to use include camcorders and webcams. When making your online video, it is important not to make your video sound too pushy or like spam. It may be a good idea to state the purpose of your blog and what can be found there. You may also want to record yourself or someone else visiting your blog to showcase your blog’s features. You could also take still shots, also commonly known as screen shots. These shots will allow you to post pictures of your blog pages. Having those pictures float through your online video is a great way to show internet users what your blog is all about.

Once you have finished making your video, you will need to upload that video to your computer. Once your recording device is hooked up to your computer, it should be recognized by a moving making software program. These programs will not only allow you to save your video, but edit it as well. Once your video is saved, you will need to follow the uploading directions for each online video website that you would like your video or videos to be uploaded to.

It is important to note that you are not guaranteed to see an increase in your blog’s traffic, but why not at least give it a shot? With most video websites being free to use, there shouldn’t be any risks associated with incorporating your blog into your next online video.

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Xbox 360 Live: Massive Multiplayer Online

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In the days of Pong, it would have been hard to imagine all the video games we take for granted these days. Handheld, high-tech, dancing on a mat that’s recorded by the TV. It would have seemed surreal.

Well, the surreal has become real and the newest addition to the video game revolution is Xbox 360 Live, a truly multimedia, multiplayer experience that surpasses anything we’ve previously understood about video games.

Though many people like to play video games with a friend, it is largely seen as a singular, solitary activity. But with the addition of Xbox 360 Live to the video game lineup, things are socially kickin’ now.

Simply put, Xbox 360 Live is an online gaming service using your Xbox or Xbox 360 video console. You subscribe to the service, and then can play games with or against friends or other players around the world. There are more than 100 Xbox games that are enabled for this service, and all Xbox 360 games are at least “Xbox 360 Live aware”.

What’s most striking about Xbox 360 Live is the method by which you communicate with others. Through a headset that’s either bundled with your gaming system or purchased separately, you can voice or text message your friends or other players. While you are signed on, you can see what your friends are doing, even to the extent you can tell what game they are playing and what level they are on.

Truly, this is not your dad’s Atari.

So, how do you get in on this interesting form of play? First, you should own an Xbox 360 video gaming system. Then you have to subscribe to the service, and given the features, it is surprisingly affordable.

There are a variety of ways to subscribe to Xbox 360 live. If you choose the gold package (most popular), you can get:

- Access to online multiplayer games
- Ability to download Xbox 360 content and access to other downloads
- Enhanced ability to manage your list of friends

How do you purchase these services? There are a few ways. You can purchase a bundle at a store (currently available with rebates) and install. You can also purchase cards with time on them.

For example:

- You can purchase a 12-month Xbox 360 Live subscription card for about $50 or a 3-month subscription card for around $20.

- If you purchase the 3-month premium gold pack, you receive a headset, a 3-month gold membership, 100 Microsoft points, and the Xbox Live arcade game, Joust. This costs about $40 but currently has a $10 rebate.

- Go for the big daddy and purchase the 12-month premium gold pack. This will get you a 12-month membership, the Xbox 360 headset, the Xbox Live arcade game, Bankshot Billiards, and 200 Microsoft points. This costs about $70, but currently has a $20 rebate.

If you’re not sure you want to pay for a membership, there is a free 48-hour trial offer, which allows you to try the service before deciding if you want to subscribe. Like any free trial, this is a great way to decide if this is the right service for you.

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A Look At Information Technology Security For 2007

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The world of computer security is a fascinating aspect and 2007 is not going to be any different, but it will be more interesting with the release of Microsoft Vista.

Large companies are looking to tighten the noose around those bad hackers, consumers are demanding more security and more privacy for there home computers, and who wouldn’t, credit card fraud and identity theft has not decreased it has only increased.

Hackers who like to hack into bank accounts are going to have a harder time doing that. Some online banking companies are asking there customers to take a further step in the login process when logging into there bank accounts. For example, some banks are asking there customers to enter their user ID on one page and then enter their password on the next page; this makes it more difficult for hackers. But don’t ever feel like you are safe, keep your guard up and don’t fall for any phony emails that ask you to go to a fake look a like bank website and enter your user name and password. If you do get one of those fake emails call your bank first, and ask them if they sent you the email, and you can also forward the email to the banks technical support team.

Thanks to companies like Webroot there are programs that can help you keep your computer secure and free of spy ware and ad ware, with their Spy Sweeper software which I highly recommend. Webroot also offers a great firewall that your computer should not be without. Go to AME Computers Spyware and Malware page for more information on these great products.

Another good move toward security and spam is that there are some ISP’s that are offering free spam filters, this helps cut down on the amount of junk mail reaching your inbox. The newer version of Outlook has built in junk mail filter, but what’s the point in having a filter if you have to go and filter through the spam filter that Outlook provides.

The flip side to all of this is the cost to consumers. Spyware and viruses can cost companies, and the average consumer thousands of dollars a year. Companies implementing new security hardware pass on those expenses to there customers, so it is not good for the consumer or the business. Microsoft Vista operating system has some built in features to help keep you safe; however there still may be a need for third party software to protect against spyware and viruses.

It’s a never ending battle between the good guys like Webroot and Lava Soft and the bad guys like the hackers and spammers. Do your part and fight the good fight.

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19 January 2007

Check List For Linux Security

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Linux is an amazing operating system considering how it was originally created. It was a modest program written for one person as a hobby – Linus Torvald of Finland. It has grown into a full-fledge 32-bit operating system. It is solid, stable and provides support for an incredible number of applications. It has very powerful capabilities and runs very fast and rarely crashes.

Unfortunately Linux machines are broken almost every day. This happens not because it is an insecure operating system. It contains all the necessary tools to make it very secure. But the truth is. It hasn’t become significantly more secure with the increase in popularity. On the other hand, our understanding of the hackers methods and the wide variety of tools and techniques available contributed to help system administrators to secure their Linux computers.

This article list's the most critical situations, and how to prevent an invasion with simple measures.

1- Weak passwords

By far the first and most used method used by hackers to try penetrating a Linux system is cracking a password, preferently of the user root. Usually they will target a common user first, and then, using his/her access to the operating system, try to get a privileged access cracking the root password. Good password policy, and good passwords are absolutely critical to the security on any computer. Some common mistakes when selecting a password:

A- use “password” as password.
B- use the name of the computer.
C- a well-know name from science, sports or politics.
D- reference to movies.
E- anything that is part of the user web site.
F– references associated with the account.

The latest version of Linux offer shadowed passwords. If a cracker can see an encrypted password, crack it would a simple task. So, instead of storing the password in the passwd file, they are now stored in the shadow file which is readable only for root. Before a hacker can crack a password he needs to figure out an account name. So, simple accounts names must be avoided as well. Another security measure is to apply a “no login” to the account in the passwd file. This must be done to all the accounts that don’t need to log in to the system. Examples are: apache, mysql, ftp and other.

Limit which terminals root may log in from. If the root account is allowed to log in only in certain terminals that are considered secure, it will be almost impossible for a hacker to penetrate the system. This can be done listing the allowed terminals on /etc/security. The login program will consider insecure any terminal that is not listed on this file, which is readable, only by root.

2- Open Network Ports

Any Linux default installation will provide the Operating System with tons of software and services. Several of them are not necessary or even wanted by the administrator. Removing these software and services will close the path to several attacks and improve security. The /sbin/chkconfig program can be used to stop services from automatically starting at run levels 3, 4 and 5. Log in as root and type /sbin/chkconfig --list to view all the services set to start automatically. Select the ones you don’t need and type /sbin/chkconfig 345 name_of_service off. You must do that to all services you don’t want to keep running. Also, the xinetd server can be used to disable other services as well.

3- Old Software Versions

Everyday vulnerabilities are found in programs, and most of them are fixed constantly. It is important, and sometimes critical, to keep up with the changes. There are mailing lists for every Linux distribution where one can have security related information’s, and the latest vulnerabilities found.

Some place to watch for security holes are:

· http://www.redhat.com/mailman/listinfo/redhat-announce-list
· http://www.debian.org/MailingLists/
· http://www.mandrakesecure.net/en/mlist.php
· http://www.suse.com/us/private/support/security/index.html
· http://www.freebsd.org/security/index.html
· http://www.linuxtoday.com/
· http://www.lwn.net/

It is crucial to insure that the security released patches are applied to the programs as soon as they area available. The hacker community will be aware of the discovered holes and will try to explore them before the fixes are applied.

4- Insecure and Badly Configured Programs

There are some programs that have a history of security problems. To name a few IMAP, POP, FTP, port map and NFS, are the most known. The good thing is that most of these programs can be replaced by a secure version like spop, sftp or scp.

It is important that, before deploying any service, the administrator investigate its security history. Sometimes simple configuration measures can prevent serious headaches in the future.

Some advices regarding a web server configuration are well worth to mention:

- Never run the web server as a privileged user;
- Do not keep clients’ confidential data on the web server – Credit card numbers, phone numbers, mailing addresses, must be recorded on a different machine.
- Make sure the privileged data that a user supplies on a form does not show up as a default for the next person to use the form;
- Establish acceptable values for data that is supplied by web clients.
- Check vulnerabilities on CGI programs.

5- Stale and Unnecessary Accounts

When a user no longer uses his /her account, make sure it is removed from the system. This stale account won’t have this password changed periodically leaving a hole. Publicly readable or writable files owned by that account must be removed. When you remove an unnecessary service make sure you remove or disable the correspondent account.

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PSP2 Codename Cobalt

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I have no idea that it is real but i got some Specs about it:

- All Metal & Ruggedized Rubber Build
- 200% Brighter Screen
- Dual Analog Controllers
- Visual Battery Display
- 8GB Flash Drive
- Wifi (a,b,g)
- Bluetooth V.2 (A2DP, AVRCP)
- Firmware 4.07

No word yet on Battery Life and Media Files Support!

- Updated Pic from (Gizmodo)
- Axe like shape (Thick on the top and thins out on the bottom)
- 12mm (TOP) 6mm (BOTTOM)

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Blackberry 8800 entering market from February

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Research in Motion is going to release a new idol. We are talking about the Blackberry 8800, the follower of the successful Pearl. Rumours about its launching announce Blackberry 8800 will be available very soon, starting from February. The new RIM mobile will have the usual QWERTY keyboard, a trackball and Wi-Fi connectivity. Very slim and very stylish, the new 8800 could be a good successor for Pearl.

Some Blackberry 8800 Specs:

•Quad-Band: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz GSM;
•Phone and SMS;
•Corporate Data Access;
GPRS, EDGE and Wi-Fi;
•BlackBerry Maps;
•Trackball, ESC and Menu keys;
•Integrated earpiece and microphone;
•Bluetooth v2.0; headset, hands-free and serial port profiles supported;
•Polyphonic, MP3 & MIDI ringtones, vibrate, on-screen or LED indicator;
•Embedded RIM wireless modem;
•Ultra Thin
•Full QWERTY keypad
•Large 320 x 240 screen
•Full multimedia feature set
•Possible on some versions of the 8800 (Camera - 1.3 mp, 5x digital zoom, flash and maybe even video recording)
•Media Player for audio and video playback (Built-in streaming)
•64 MB Flash, expandable memory (Micro SD)

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18 January 2007

US700W UMPC from no-name OEM makes the big boys look bad

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Its a strange angle on the picture. Because of the beveled edges it looks really thick. Its not. Its very thin. We've got to track down the company that's developing this. I've had one tip that I'm following up at the moment.

Look! 1024 x 600. Look! 560g. Look! 20.5mm.

There's no indication if its running an Intel 915 or 945 chipset which is a shame. The 945 would be enough to enable aero as you can get the WDDM drivers for it. I'm not sure if the 1.06G Celeron could handle that. Maybe that 1.6Ghz ULV Core 2 Solo based Celeron will be ready in time!

US702 High resolution Convertible

OS - Microsoft Windows Vista Business/Ultimate
Processor - Intel Celeron M 1.06G MHz
LCD - 1024 x 600 Pixels
Memory -- 1G MB SODIMM
Wireless LAN-802g/b
USB 2.0
*1WebCam 1.3M
Memory Expansion- SD/MMC or CF
Battery- L-Polymer 1,800 Mah(IN) /3,400 Mah(OUT)/5,400 Mah(OUT)
Size-198 (L) x 125 (W) x 26 (H) mm (Max.)

US701 High resolution Tablet with GPS, webcam, +still cam

OS - Microsoft Windows Vista Business/Ultimate
Processor - Intel Celeron M 1.06G MHz
LCD - 1024 x 600 Pixels
Memory -- 1G MB SODIMM
Wireless LAN-802.11b/g
USB 2.0
*1WebCam 1.3M
Camera 2.0M
Memory Expansion- SD/MMC
Battery- L-Polymer 1,800 Mah(IN) /3,400 Mah(OUT)
Size-198 (L) x 118 (W) x 20.5 (H) mm (Max.)

US700W Tablet

OS - Microsoft Windows Vista Business/Ultimate
Processor - Intel Celeron M 1.06G MHz
Display - 7", TFT-LCD,WVGA
LCD - 800 x 480 Pixels
Memory -- 1G MB SODIMM
Wireless LAN-802.11b/g
USB 2.0 *1
WebCam 1.3M
Memory Expansion- SD/MMC
Battery- L-Polymer 1,800 Mah(IN) /3,400 Mah(OUT)
Size-198 (L) x 114 (W) x 20.5 (H) mm (Max.)

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RFID tattoos for tracking Cows and People

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Did you know that Saint Louis based Somark Innovations successfully tested an "RFID tattoo" on cows and rats? Yes indeed, tattoo, not the ol' RFID chip found in passports, dogs, and Dutch VIP clubbers. Somark's system uses an array of needles to inject a passive RFID ink which can be read through the hair on your choice of beast. The ink can be either invisible or colored but Somark is keeping mum as to its exact contents. They only say that it doesn't contain any metals and is 100% biocompatible and chemically inert. The tattoo can be applied in 5 to 10 seconds with no shaving involved and can be read from up to 4 feet away -- the bigger the tattoo, the more information stored. Best of it all, it's apparently safe for humans to ingest allowing the FDA to track back Mad Cow Disease, e-coli outbreaks, and Soylent Green. Don't worry, they can't track you just as long as you chew your food like mama taught. However, with "military personnel" listed as Somark's "secondary target market," well, it's just a matter of time before we're all cattle now isn't it.


Pirate Bay Plans to Buy Sealand !!

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Pirate Bay recently announced that they are going to raise enough money to buy The Principality of Sealand, a small island located 10 kilometers off the coast of Suffolk, England. Pirate Bay plan to build HQ at Sealand and make it a copyright-free nation. They have launched BuySealand.com to help them raise funds. Just incase, they can’t raise enough money to buy Sealand, they’ll consider buying a small island somewhere else. Pirate Bay official blog says:

"The price for Sealand is probably about $ We don’t really care. We’re going for it anyhow! We really want to see what the community can do - with it’s own island. Since we are all for sharing the country would be shared amongst us all."

Pirate Bay is undoubtedly the heaven for illegal torrents, but this one sounds more like a joke to me.

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ColorWare adds Thinkpad T60p to Laptop Rainbow

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Those digging the specs on Lenovo's Thinkpad T60p laptop but not so down with the basic black look now have another option besides the DIY route at their disposal, with ColorWare announcing that its added the laptop to its multi-colored lineup. The laptop itself remains the same as before, of course, and configurable to some extent, with a 15.4-inch widescreen display and 2GHz Core 2 Duo processor standard, along with up to 2GB of RAM and 160GB of hard drive space. Things depart from the Thinkpad mold when you hit the color selection screen, however, with no less than 28 colors to choose from, including such stylish options as Caution Yellow (seen above) and Cotton Candy Pink. Going for the base model in your choice of color will set you back $2,950 with units shipping in 2-3 weeks, although those that have already sprung for a T60 aren't entirely out of luck, with ColorWare saying they'll soon also be offering an option for you to send in your laptop for a bit of sprucing up.

(Read More)

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Who Wont Be Getting The iPhone?

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To find out that the Apple iPhone would roll out locked to Cingular on a multi-year exclusivity agreement was difficult enough for some folks to swallow. Imagine, then, the pain and suffering that'll be experienced by those in areas that Cingular has forsaken. Case in point: the Burlington Free Press has noted that Cingular offers not a sliver of coverage in the quaint state of Vermont, leaving well over half a million good citizens (Ben and Jerry included, we reckon) without their fix. While our initial instinct might be to buy the phone elsewhere and just roam 'til the cows come home (literally -- this is Vermont, after all), Cingular policy states that a customer's address must lie in a directly covered area -- and even for the few that manage to skate by that one, the carrier's known for canceling accounts that roam excessively. Of course, Cingular points out that eager buyers are more than welcome to buy it contract-free without activating an account, but there's not a lot of fun in that; meanwhile, Apple's staying mum on the subject, perhaps for fear of further agitating hundreds of thousands of irate Vermonters. And the problem is by no means limited to Vermont: residents of large parts of Maine, Virginia, West Virginia, New Mexico, the Dakotas, Arizona, Montana, Utah, Nevada, Idaho, and Colorado (among other states) might find that Apple has passed them over come June, unless Cingular goes into turbo mode lighting up new service areas. Anyone out there willing to move for a cellphone?

(Read More)

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Samsung SCH-W559, the First Phone to Use VibeTonz Tactile Feedback in Touchscreen Operation

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Although Immersion's VibeTonz technology has been integrated into various Samsung handsets in the past, the shakin' technology was previously limited to ring tone and gaming enhancements. Today, however, Samsung is launching the keypad-less SCH-W559, which is the self-proclaimed "world's first" handset to utilize the VibeTonz system as a means of tactile feedback. The unit's QVGA touchscreen is meant to be a hands-on experience, and whether you use a stylus or the tips of your finger, the phone will provide a vibrating cue, which can be adjusted and customized within the phone's software, whenever you touch a virtual button. Immersion claims that its technology allows the on-screen buttons to feel more like "mechanical keys" rather than just a sheet of plastic. The device will be launching solely on China Unicom initially, will support both CDMA / GSM networks, and will feature a 1.3-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, handwriting recognition capability, and audio / video playback functions to boot. Of course, users will be able to pimp out their ringtones with integrated buzzing, and while we're not sure how much Samsung plans on charging for the rumbler, we can't wait for it to start shaking things up here on American soil.

(Read More)

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Pegasus - New PDA Phone from Asus

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It looks like Asus has a new PDA phone in the works. At least that’s what the iF Design Awards product gallery is telling us.

Named Pegasus this super slim (15.4 mm) Windows Mobile gadget combines phone, PDA and GPS navigation system into one sleek package. It has a numeric keypad, jog dial and allows for simple one handed control. The camera body is finished with brushed aluminum and diamond-cut edges to accentuate superior taste and a feeling of luxury.

No further details are available at this time, but the name of this PDA phone (Pegasus was the original name of Asustek. They dropped first 3 letters for higher directory listings), makes us wonder just what plans Asus has for Pegasus future

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17 January 2007

Proposed Microsoft Office At Bangalore,India

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Saddam Hussein execution: A sectarian lynching

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A video of the final minutes of Saddam Hussein, released to the Arab media late Saturday and widely broadcast around the world, demonstrates that the execution of the former Iraqi president was an act of sectarian vengeance by the Shiite Muslim groups placed in power by the US invasion of the country.

The video, apparently made using the cell phone of one of the guards or official witnesses in the death chamber, records the last fragments of conversation between Hussein and his hooded executioners, who were apparently loyal to the Shiite radical clergyman Moqtada al-Sadr, head of the most powerful militia force in Iraq, the Mahdi Army.

Several of the executioners and witnesses began chanting the name of the Shiite leader, “Moqtada, Moqtada, Moqtada,” as the noose was slipped around Hussein’s neck. He responded with surprise, and then a scornful retort, “Moqtada? Is this how real men behave?”

Other onlookers chanted the name of Moqtada al-Sadr’s father—a co-founder of the Dawa Party, one of the backers of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki—and one shouted, “Go to hell,” to which Hussein responded that those responsible for his execution had erected a “gallows of shame.”

Even the judge who had ratified the death sentence, Munir Haddad, reproached the sectarian outburst by the Shiite guards, telling them, “Please no! The man is about to die.” The video then concludes with grisly footage of the trapdoor opening and Hussein plunging to his death, his neck broken and his body swinging.

Beyond the events recorded on the video, the very fact that Mahdi Army loyalists were among the guards in the death chamber and could record the proceedings without hindrance has enormous political significance. It demonstrates the extent to which the US-backed Iraqi regime has become the instrument of factions in the sectarian conflict raging throughout much of Iraq.

For nearly a year, Sunni Muslims, Christians, secular Iraqis and others targeted by Shiite death squads have been hunted down, tortured and murdered. Most of these atrocities have begun with the seizure of the victims by armed members of the Iraqi police and military—the very forces the Bush administration claims it has been training to fight “terrorism.”

By Monday, with the digital recording circulating throughout Iraq and the entire Arab and Muslim world, it was clear that for the Maliki government and the US occupation regime the execution had become a political debacle. Thousands of Sunnis marched in protest demonstrations in Tikrit, Mosul and cities and towns throughout Anbar province. In Samarra, where the bombing of the Shiite Golden Mosque last February touched off the sectarian warfare, Sunnis marched through the shattered structure with a coffin representing Saddam Hussein’s.

The Maliki government, in a belated effort to distance itself from the images of Shiite triumphalism, ordered an investigation into how the video was shot in the death chamber and how it was distributed. But at least one eyewitness, one of the prosecutors in Hussein’s trial, said that the cell phone was brought in by a top government official, whom he would not name, not by a guard, and that the recording of the final altercation between the guards and Hussein was done quite openly.

Detailed reports in the US media conceded that the execution had backfired on the Bush administration. An account published in the New York Times Monday observed that it would be difficult for the White House to disassociate itself from the rushed execution of the former president, since the hanging took place at a US-controlled military facility in Baghdad, and Hussein remained in US custody until he was handed over to the executioners.

The article, co-authored by John Burns, the Times bureau chief in Baghdad and one of the most avid apologists for the war, noted that “Iraq’s new Shiite rulers . . . seemed bent on turning the execution and its aftermath into a new nightmare for the Sunni minority privileged under Mr. Hussein.”

The Times reported that US officials in Iraq were “privately incensed at the dead-of-night rush to the gallows,” and had repeatedly urged the Maliki government to delay the execution by a few weeks in order to conform to provisions in the Iraqi constitution and legal code, requiring approval of the hanging by the three-member Iraqi presidency, and barring executions during the celebration of Id al-Adha, a Muslim religious holiday.

The timing was perhaps the most brazenly sectarian aspect of the execution, since Saturday is the first day of Id al-Adha, according to the Sunni practice, while the holiday begins on Sunday for Shiites. One official effectively declared the Shiite observance to be the law of the land, and, as the Times revealed, the Shiite clergy were given final decision-making power, not the elected government.

The Times reported that the Maliki government had debated objections from US officials and Sunni politicians over conducting the execution on Saturday, then decided to refer the decision to the marjaiyah, the council of ayatollahs in the Shiite holy city of Najaf, which is the highest body of the Shiite clergy. According to the Times, “The ayatollahs approved. Mr. Maliki, at a few minutes before midnight on Friday, then signed a letter to the justice minister, ‘to carry out the hanging until death.’”

The Times concluded with the remarkable admission, “None of the Iraqi officials were able to explain why Mr. Maliki had been unwilling to allow the execution to wait. Nor would any explain why those who conducted it had allowed it to deteriorate into a sectarian free-for-all that had the effect, on the video recordings, of making Mr. Hussein, a mass murderer, appear dignified and restrained, and his executioners, representing Shiites who were his principal victims, seem like bullying street thugs.”

A second article in Monday’s Times reinforced this picture by reporting the reaction among Sunni Arabs in Baghdad: “the grainy recording of the execution’s cruel theater summed up what has become increasingly clear on the streets of the capital: that the Shiite-led government that assumed power in the American effort here is running the state under an undisguised sectarian banner.”

The Associated Press, in a report on the Sunni response to the execution, noted that the hanging was followed by a US military raid on the Baghdad offices of a prominent Sunni politician, in which six Iraqis were killed, and warned, “The current Sunni protests, which appear to be building, could signal a spreading militancy.”

Rizgar Mohammed Amin, the Kurdish judge who presided over the first trial of Saddam Hussein until he was forced to resign by official pressure from the ruling Shiite bloc, condemned the timing and manner of the execution. The hanging violated a clear legal prohibition (enacted under Hussein’s rule and still in force) stating that “no verdict should be implemented during the official holidays or religious festivals,” Amin told Associated Press.

The cell phone video of the execution of Hussein demonstrates the reality of the “democracy” which the US invasion has brought to Iraq. The invasion has destroyed the framework of the Iraqi state, exacerbated social tensions, and provoked an explosion of sectarian violence at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives. The continuing US occupation—in which American and British troops continue to kill thousands of Iraqis even as murder squads operate on both sides of the Sunni/Shiite divide—has brought about not the flowering of “freedom,” but the virtual dissolution of Iraqi society.

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Apple attacks iPhone UI emulators

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Apple is apparently taking a dim view of software developers emulating the bright Mac OS X user interface it's developed for its upcoming iPhone handset. Attempts to post graphics that bring the look of the iPhone to existing Palm OS, Windows Mobile and Symbian devices are being repulsed by legal threats.

Take the case of iPhony, an iPhone-alike launcher application developed for Palm OS devices. Posted online late last week, by Monday it had been withdrawn - well, the downloadable file, at any rate - at the behest of Apple's legal eagles.

Worse, perhaps, the company's attorneys have even threatened news sites that reported on the availability of the iPhone-esque skins, the Sydney Morning Herald alleges. To be fair, like the skins themselves, it's the use of Mac OS X icons that has Apple riled in this case.

Yes, it owns the icons and images of them, and has a right to demand they not be used in products it disapproves of. Websites it's gone after have willy-nilly reposted screenshots of the iPhone-imitating skins without considering the copyright implications.

But since the strength of the iPhone is how it works not how it looks, is all this legal activity really necessary? Dollar to a dime it helps promote the iPhone more than it impacts sales of the device.

Apple has form here, pursuing in the past individuals and companies who've attempted to offer utilities that emulate Mac OS X's Aqua UI and its Dock utility on Windows and Linux machines. It's even got stroppy with folk trying to make older versions of the Mac OS look like Mac OS X.

In March 2005, Google yanked a toolbar utility that operated not unlike Apple's own Dock, apparently at the behest of the Mac maker's intellectual property watchdogs. ®

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Apple's iPhone: theoretical risks of unreleased handset

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Apple's iPhone is unlikely to become a gateway device for mobile malware, Symantec says. The handset will run an operating system based on Mac OS X, thus opening the possibility that the small number of viruse targeting the platform might be re-purposed to infect iPhone.

However, Concerns about possible mobile infestation of iPhones are "premature" at worst according to Eric Chien, an anti-virus researcher at Symantec.

For one thing the iPhone will be locked down so that consumers will be able to install only selected third party applications. While not dismissing the possibility that iPhone-specific malware could be created, Chien reckons it won't reach the levels currently seen with smart phones running Symbian OS. Nonetheless, vulnerabilities in Mac OS X could create future problems, he warns.

"The likely vectors of infection will be via any vulnerabilities on the device that allow code to execute. Unfortunately, just a single malware writer taking advantage of a single vulnerability could cause havoc, but for the most part such attacks will be limited," he writes.

"If the iPhone remains a closed device with not even Java applications or widgets let alone native code, the risk of infection becomes orders of magnitude lower."

Even though the iPhone is "locked down", interest in the technology is likely to spur the creation of home-brew hacks. The motives of these users is simply to run their own code on the phone, but the techniques pioneered by tech enthusiasts might be re-purposed for more malign purposes.

"Once they install and execute unknown code on their device, there is always a chance of executing malicious code. This scenario happened in the past with the Sony PSP and PSPBrick Trojan," Chien notes.

A mono-culture of devices running the same OS, knowledge among hackers about how software on the device works have been factors driving the creation of numerous items of malware on Windows PCs and the reason why mobile malware, despite considerable hype from some quarters, has been mercifully rare. Chien concludes that this is unlikely to change much with the arrival of iPhones later this year.

His analysis is published on Symantec's security blog here. ®

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16 January 2007

Netflix launches 1,000-title online movie feature

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Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings is set to demonstrate the “instant viewing” feature on Tuesday at the National Retail Federation convention in New York, where the company will receive an award for retail innovator of the year.

Hastings told Reuters in an interview on Friday here that the feature was aimed at under-30 Internet users who made video-sharing sites like YouTube.com popular.

“For consumers under 30, they are doing so much with online video this is a natural extension of their usage paradigm on a laptop,” Hastings said.

“Eventually we want to be on every Internet-connected screen from cell phones to computers to big screen plasma TVs but the starting place is the PC.”

Although Netflix has been working on virtual delivery for years, its debut comes about two months after rival Blockbuster Inc. beefed up its own online DVD rental program by allowing subscribers to swap movies in its stores, which carry an average of 5,000 titles.

The Blockbuster plan, called Total Access, has been seen by rental industry analysts as a threat to Netflix’s dominance of the fast-growing, $1-billion-plus online movie rental market.

Rental and retail sales revenues of DVDs and home videos reached $24.5 billion in 2006. About 100 million U.S. households have DVD players, and an estimated 41 million U.S. households had access in 2006 to broadband Internet services needed to download or stream video content.

Netflix’s goal is to sign up 20 million of them as subscribers by 2012.

The instant viewing feature also puts Netflix squarely in competition with several players already offering movies for rent online, including Starz Entertainment’s Vongo and the studio-owned MovieBeam, MovieLink and CinemaNow services.

Netflix’s limited slate of electronically available titles mirrors its new rivals’ but its subscriber base of about 6 million dwarfs those of the other online rental services.

Its instant viewing feature, available only on computers that run the Windows XP and Vista operating systems, plays back DVD-quality digital files almost instantly after subscribers install special software from the Netflix site, a process that takes about 20 seconds.

It does not download large movie files to consumers’ computer hard drives, but “streams” them directly from the Internet, meaning that users must stay connected to the Web, either through a cable or wireless connection, while viewing a movie.

The feature, which cost Netflix about $40 million to develop, is designed to adjust the picture’s resolution based on a user’s cable bandwidth so that the movie doesn’t freeze during play.

Online movie viewing time is awarded to Netflix subscribers based on their rental plans, with entry-level subscribers getting six hours per month and those with the most popular plans–three DVDS at a time– getting 18 hours per month.

Hastings said that although the free viewing time will not affect how frequently subscribers receive DVDs, he expects growing online usage to cut demand for DVDs by mail, and the company’s costs associated with buying and mailing them.

“Online is, of course, more cost effective so what we’re learning is, how close to our current gross margin model can we operate as consumers watch more movies online?” Hastings said.

Netflix plans to roll out the offering across the United States over the next six months to ensure that its servers can handle demand.

Netflix has inked deals to stream online content from NBC Universal, Sony Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc, 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, Warner Bros., Lionsgate, New Line Cinema and a number of television studios on the new service.

Paramount is owned by Viacom Inc.. NBC Universal is a unit of General Electric Co.. News Corp. owns 20th Century Fox.

Warner Bros. and New Line are owned by Time Warner Inc.. MGM is owned by a consortium of private investors, including Sony Corp., which owns Sony Pictures.

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Sony ships 1 million PS3s in Japan,seen missing target

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Sony’s game unit, Sony Computer Entertainment, said in a statement its global PS3 shipments reached 2 million in about two months after the launch, compared with its original target to hit the figure by the end of December.

Sony launched the new video console in Japan on November 11 and in North America on November 17, and is locked in a battle with Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Nintendo’s Wii for the top spot in the $30 billion game market’s console war.

The announcement came a day after Nomura Securities cut its PS3 shipment forecast through March by 25 percent to 4.5 million units, citing worse-than-expected sales.

KBC Securities analyst Hiroshi Kamide also said the brokerage estimates Sony selling only a little over 3 million units of the PS3 by March because of its high price and lack of game software available for the console.

“The biggest factor is the high price,” he said. “It is hard to understand for users why they should pay that much for the product.”

Sony’s high-end PS3 retails for about $600 in the United States while the premium Xbox 360 sells for $400 and Nintendo sells the lower-tech Wii for $250. The Xbox 360 debuted in 2005, while Nintendo launched the Wii in the U.S. on November 19 and in Japan on December 2.

The PS3 was outsold by the Wii in Japan by the end of December, according to video game magazine publisher Enterbrain, while retail market research firm NPD has said its sales also lost to Nintendo’s Wii in the United States in December.

Sony Computer Entertainment said it stuck to its target to ship 6 million PS3 by March.

Nomura also lowered its PS3 shipment forecast to 10 million units from 16 million for 2007/08 and to 11 million units from 18 million for 2008/09.

“For home-use video game consoles, the central role of which in our view was usurped by handheld game machine Nintendo DS, we think the absence of a dominant product will lead to a protracted struggle,” Nomura analyst Yuta Sakurai said in a report to clients.

“For the time being, we think Wii will remain on the ascendancy, supported by a lineup of attractive software titles and a broad user base,” he said.

Before the announcement, shares in Sony closed down 0.2 percent at 5,690 yen. The benchmark Nikkei average ended down 0.04 percent.

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Google, Yahoo gain share in U.S. Web search market

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Google Inc. has increased its share of the U.S. Web search market to 47.4 percent with a gain of 0.4 percent during December, while No. 2 ranked Yahoo Inc. also edged higher, a survey said on Monday.

Web audience measurement firm comScore Networks Inc. said No. 3-ranked Microsoft Corp.’s share slid 0.5 percent to 10.5 percent of U.S. Web searches while IAC/InterActiveCorp’s Ask.com’s share dipped 0.1 percent to 5.4 percent.

Google has gained share in 16 of the last 17 months in the United States, the world’s largest Internet market, according to comScore data.

Yahoo’s share of the market rose 0.3 percent to 28.5 percent in December over November, the survey found.

An estimated 6.7 billion searches were conducted by U.S. Web users in December, up 1 percent from November.

The number of U.S. Web search queries has grown 30 percent since December of 2005, comScore said. Consumers performed 3.2 billion searches on Google sites, while Yahoo drew 1.9 billion searches.

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The Technology Of Erection

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When you want to move nearly any part of your body, you do it using muscles. Whether you are moving your fingers, toes, arms or legs, muscles do the work. Even when you stick your tongue out, you do it using muscles:

1> You think about moving some part of your body
2> The appropriate muscles contract
3> That part of the body moves

Muscles let you move your body voluntarily with precise control.

The penis, on the other hand, is completely different. There are no muscle contractions involved in making the penis erect. To become erect, the penis instead uses pressure.

Probably the easiest way to understand how the penis becomes erect is to think about a balloon. If a balloon has no air in it, it is limp. As you inflate a limp balloon with just a little air, it becomes elongated and rigid.

The penis uses a similar mechanism, but instead of using pressurized air to become rigid, the penis uses pressurized blood. The penis contains two cigar-shaped structures, called corpus cavernosa (singular - corpus cavernosum), that it uses to become erect.

Think of the corpus cavernosa as balloon-like tubes. Arteries bring blood into these two tubes, and veins carry blood away from them. The penis can be either limp or erect, depending on the flow of blood:

1> In a non-erect state, the arteries that bring blood into the corpus cavernosa are somewhat constricted, while the veins that drain the blood from the penis are open. There is no way for pressure to build inside the penis. In this state, the penis is limp.

2> When a man becomes aroused, the arteries leading into the penis open up so that pressurized blood can enter the penis quickly. The veins leaving the penis constrict. Pressurized blood is trapped in the corpus cavernosa, and this blood causes the penis to elongate and stiffen. The penis is erect.
If the arteries leading to the penis do not open up properly, it is difficult or impossible for a man to become erect. This problem is the leading cause of erectile dysfunction.

To solve an erection problem when the cause is poor blood flow, you need to open the arteries and this can be done using Viagra.

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15 January 2007


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If you should ever be forced by a robber to withdraw money from an ATM
Machine, you can notify the police by entering your Pin # in reverse.

For example if your pin number is 1234 then you would put in 4321. The
ATM recognizes that your pin number is backwards from the ATM card you
Placed in the machine.

The machine will still give you the money you requested, but unknown to
the robber, the police will be immediately dispatched to help you.
This information was recently broadcasted on TV and it states that it is
Seldom used because people don't know it exists.

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Trivia Questions And Answers By A Trivia Break

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1. What was the name of the first computer game?
A. Pong
B. Tennis for Two
C. Pacman
D. Donkey Kong

2. How were the Hawaiian Islands settled?
A. By pirates
B. By Polynesians
C. By Spaniards
D. By English

3. Which U.S. city had the first full-time organized police department?
A. Boston
B. New York
C. Chicago
D. Washington D.C.

4. Credit money is paper backed by what?
A. Promise to pay
B. Gold
C. Silver
D. Goods or property

5. The U.S. state Kansas is named for the Kansas River but where did the river get the name?
A. Joseph Kansas, the explorer
B. the Kansa people who once lived in the area
C. the Kansa plains, a geographical feature in the region
D. the Kansa bird found in the region


Trivia Answers

1. What was the name of the first computer game?
B. Tennis for Two
ATB: It was created by Working William A. Higinbotham to make the annual autumn open house at Brookhaven National Laboratory, a US nuclear research lab in Upton, New York, more interesting to the public. Higinbotham creates in three weeks the game system they name Tennis for Two, and it debuts with other exhibits in the Brookhaven gymnasium at the next open house in October 1958. In the rudimentary side-view tennis game, the ball bounces off a long horizontal line at the bottom of the oscilloscope, and there is a small vertical line in the centre to represent the net. Two boxes each with a dial and a button are the controllers...the dials affect the angle of the ball trajectory and the buttons "hit" the ball back to the other side of the screen. If the player doesn't curve the ball right it crashes into the net. A reset button is also available to make the ball reappear on either side of the screen ready to be sent into play again. No score is tabulated, and it is displayed in glorious phosphor monochrome on a puny 5" oscilloscope screen, but it is still a big hit with everyone who visits the display. There are people in line for hours to play it.

2. How were the Hawaiian Islands settled?
B. By Polynesians
ATB: The Hawaiian Islands were originally settled by Polynesian immigrants more than 1,000 years ago.

3. Which U.S. city had the first full-time organized police department?
B. New York
ATB: Although Boston was a close second!

4. Credit money is paper backed by what?
A. Promise to pay
ATB: Credit money is paper backed by promises by the issuer, whether a government or a bank, to pay an equivalent value in the standard monetary metal.

5. The U.S. state Kansas is named for the Kansas River but where did the river get the name?
B. the Kansa people who once lived in the area
ATB: The state is named for the Kansas
River, which, in turn, was named for
the Kansa people, who once inhabited the northeast area of the state.

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14 January 2007

111 Interesting Real Facts (Strange but True)

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1)Look at your zipper. See the initials YKK? It stands for Yoshida Kogyo Kabushibibaisha, the world's largest zipper manufacturer.

2)A duck's quack doesn't echo. No one knows why.

3)40 percent of McDonald's profits come from the sales of Happy Meals.

4)315 entries in Webster's 1996 Dictionary were misspelled.

5)On the average, 12 newborns will be given to the wrong parents daily.

6)Chocolate kills dogs! True, chocolate affects a dog's heart and nervous system. A few ounces is enough to kill a small sized dog.

7)Ketchup was sold in the 1830's as a medicine.

8)Leonardo da Vinci could write with one hand and draw with the other at the same time.

9)Because metal was scarce, the Oscars given out during World War II were made of wood.

10)There are no clocks in Las Vegas gambling casinos.

11)Leonardo da Vinci invented scissors. Also, it took him 10 years to paint Mona Lisa's lips.

12)Bruce Lee was so fast that they actually had to slow a film down so you could see his moves. That's the opposite of the norm.

13)The original name for the butterfly was "flutterby"!

14)By raising your legs slowly and lying on your back, you can't sink in quicksand.

15)Mosquito repellents don't repel. They hide you. The spray blocks the mosquito's sensors so they don't know you're there.

16)Dentists recommend that a toothbrush be kept at least six feet away from a toilet to avoid airborne particles resulting from the flush.

17)The first product to have a bar code was Wrigley's gum.

18)Michael Jordan makes more money from Nike annually than the entire Nike factory workers in Malaysia combined.

19)Marilyn Monroe had six toes on one foot.

20)Adolf Hitler's mother seriously considered having an abortion but was talked out of it by her doctor.

21)The three most valuable brand names on earth: Marlboro, Coca-Cola, and Budweiser, in that order.

22)To escape the grip of a crocodile's jaws, prick your fingers into its eyeballs. It will let you go instantly.

23)The average person falls asleep in seven minutes.

24)The "pound" (#) key on your keyboard is called an octothorp.

25)The only domestic animal not mentioned in the Bible is the cat.

26)Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

27)The average person's left hand does 56% of the typing.

28)Dreamt" is the only word in the English language that ends in "mt".

29)It's impossible to sneeze with your eyes open.

30)In Chinese, the KFC slogan "finger lickin' good" comes out as "eat your fingers off".

31)A cockroach can live for 10 days without a head.

32)We shed 40 pounds of skin a lifetime.

33)Yo-Yos were once used as weapons in the Philippines.

34)Mexico City sinks abut 10 inches a year.

35)Brains are more active sleeping than watching TV.

36)Blue is the favorite color of 80 percent of Americans.

37)When a person shakes their head from side to side, he is saying "yes" in Sri Lanka.

38)There are more chickens than people in the world.

39)It's against the law in Iceland to have a dog.

40)The thumbnail grows the slowest, and the middle nail grows the fastest.

41)There are more telephones than people in Washington, D.C.

42)The average four year-old child asks over four hundred questions a day.

43)The average person presses the snooze button on their alarm clock three Times each morning.

44)The three wealthiest families in the world have more assets than the Combined wealth of the forty-eight poorest nations.

45)The first owner of the Marlboro cigarette Company died of lung cancer.

46)Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair.

47)The world's youngest parents were 8 and 9 and lived in China in 1910.

48)Our eyes remain the same size from birth onward, but our noses and ears Never stop growing.

49)You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching TV.

50)A person will die from total lack of sleep sooner than from starvation. Death will occur about 10 days without sleep, while starvation takes a Few weeks.

51)Chewing gum while peeling onions will keep you from crying.

52)The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows.

53)When the moon is directly overhead, you weigh slightly less.

54)Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, never telephoned His wife or mother because they were both deaf.

55)A psychology student in New York rented out her spare room to a Carpenter in order to nag him constantly and study his reactions. After Weeks of needling, he snapped and beat her repeatedly with an axe Leaving her mentally retarded

56)"I am." is the shortest complete sentence in the English language

57)Colgate faced a big obstacle marketing toothpaste in Spanish speaking Countries because Colgate translates into the command "go hang Yourself."

58)Like fingerprints, everyone's tongue print is different.

59)"Bookkeeper" is the only word in English language with three consecutive Double letters.

60)Right handed people live, on average, nine years longer than left handed People do.

61)The sentence "the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" uses every Letter in the English language.

62)If the population of China walked past you in single line, the line Would never end because of the rate of reproduction

63)China has more English speakers than the United States.

64)Every human spent about half an hour as a single cell.

65)Each square inch of human skin consists of twenty feet of blood vessels.

66)An average person uses the bathroom 6 times per day.

67)Babies are born with 300 bones, but by adulthood we have only 206 in our Bodies.

68)Beards are the fastest growing hairs on the human body. If the average Man never trimmed his beard, it would grow to nearly 30 feet long in his Lifetime.

69)According to Genesis 1:20-22, the chicken came before the egg.

70)The longest place name still in use is: Taumatawhakatangihangaoauauotameteaturi- Pukakpikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu - a New Zealand hill.

71)If you leave Tokyo by plane at 7:00am, you will arrive in Honolulu at Approximately 4:30pm the previous day.

72)Scientists in Australia's Parkes Observatory thought they had positive Proof of alien life, when they began picking up radio-waves from space. However, after investigation, the radio emissions were traced to a Microwave in the building.

73)Wearing headphones for an hour increases the bacteria in your ear 700 times.

74)More than 40,000 parasites and 250 types of bacteria are exchanged during a French kiss.

75)Men can read smaller print than women, but women can hear better.

76)Coca-Cola was originally green.

77)The most common name in the world is Mohammed.

78)The name of all the continents ends with the same letter that they start with.

79)There are two credit cards for every person in the United States.

80)TYPEWRITER is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard.

81)Women blink nearly twice as much as men!!

82)You can't kill yourself by holding your breath.

83)It is impossible to lick your elbow.

84)People say "Bless you" when you sneeze because when you sneeze, your heart stops for a millisecond.

85)It is physically impossible for pigs to look up into the sky.

86)The "sixth sick sheik's sixth sheep's sick" is said to be the toughest tongue twister in the English language.

87)If you sneeze too hard, you can fracture a rib. If you try to suppress a sneeze, you can rupture a blood vessel in your head or neck and die.

88)Each king in a deck of playing cards represents great king from history. Spades - King David, Clubs - Alexander the Great, Hearts - Charlemagne, Diamonds - Julius Caesar.

89)111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321

90)If a statue of a person in the park on a horse has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle.

91)If the horse has one front leg in the air, the person died as a result of wounds received in battle.

92)If the horse has all four legs on the ground, the person died of natural causes.

93)Question - This is the only food that doesn't spoil. What is this? Ans. - Honey

94)A crocodile cannot stick its tongue out.

95)A snail can sleep for three years.

96)All polar bears are left handed.

97)American Airlines saved $40,000 in 1987 by eliminating one olive from each salad served in first-class.

98)Butterflies taste with their feet.

99)Elephants are the only animals that can't jump.

100)In the last 4000 years, no new animals have been domesticated.

101)On average, people fear spiders more than they do death.

102)Shakespeare invented the word 'assassination' and 'bump'.

103)Stewardesses is the longest word typed with only the left hand.

104)The ant always falls over on its right side when intoxicated.

105)The electric chair was invented by a dentist.

106)The human heart creates enough pressure when it pumps out to the body to squirt blood 30 feet.

107)Rats multiply so quickly that in 18 months, two rats could have over million descendants.

108)Wearing headphones for just an hour will increase the bacteria in your ear by 700 times.

109)The cigarette lighter was invented before the match.

110)Most lipstick contains fish scales.

111)And finally 99% of people who read this will try to lick their elbow.

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About me

  • I'm Aadi
  • From Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
  • I am a cool guy, a web-publisher trying to make some money from internet. Computer and internet - can't live without it. I love to help others, especially if work is related to computers and internet.
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