Monday, December 29, 2008

Epson Printers, Fleecing Consumer Pockets. The Ink Gimmick.

Beware Of Epson Printers.
This is a very important piece of information that you should all be aware off. We were amazed that we fell for this cheap gimmick played by a reputed company like EPSON. It is sad that even an experienced I.T team like ours could fall for this gimmick. We purchased an Epson C110 printer and used it for a while, after a while the ink in the printer flagged low levels and we needed to add a new catridge. Nothing wrong so far as this was a normal thing to do. We went to the reputed I.T store where the Epson C110 was purchased from and requested for the ink catridges. The price was a whooping 45 U.S$ !!!! This was robbery since the new Epson C110 printer was purchased for a little over 100 U.S$.
As is the normal practice, we requested for a compatible set of catridges for the C110 printer. Printer users normally use this option as these catridges are very much cheaper than the Epron ink catridges brand. We were told that the ink catridges for the Epson C110 have an embedded chip that cannot be duplicated. As a result of this no other ink catridge manufacturer could make compatible catridges for the Epson C110 printer. This is downright robbery on the part of Epson and you can see a better explanation below.
In the normal course there is a price difference of 40% to 60% between compatible ink catridges and ink catridges sold by Epson. Regarding Epson's claim that compatibles are of inferior quality, we need to let the consumer decide price over quality. It is now known that Epson will start this chip insertion for ink catridges used in all Epson printers to come. So dear customers, it is time that we gave Epson the boot and stopped buying Epson printers.
Here are a few interesting facts that need to be analyzed:
(a) Mitsubishi makes CD drives, they however do not force consumers to buy only CD disks branded as Mistubishi.
(b) Kodak makes film and cameras, they do not force you to use Kodak film on Kodak cameras.
(c) Nikon sells high end cameras and lenses. There are any number of compatible lenses that can be fitted on Nikon cameras. These compatibles cost a fraction of what original Nikon lenses sell for.
(d) ASUS is one of the most popular manfucturers for PC computer mainboards and advanced graphic cards. They do not tie you to their product when assembling a computer by putting together componets from various brands.
Epson is cheating consumers by starting this trend. Thousands of buyers use compatible ink catrdiges each year and know what is good and bad for them. We don't need Epson to tell us what is good and then charge 1/3 the printer cost for the ink catridge. Please spread the word around at stay out of the clutches of this technological fraud.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Why Do MP3 Music Files Consume Very Little Space.

A normal audio CD would store around 8 to 12 songs or music scores. Take a CD with a similar storage capacity (as the audio CD) and try to pack in around 80 to 100 MP3 music tracks. It is most likely that the CD would accomodate these tracks. Now, listen to the MP3 music and you will see that each of those tracks are complete and have not been cut short. If you wondered how this would be possible, understanding the concept of MP3 recordings would would help you. Conventional audio recorded files are converted to the MP3 format by running them through a special conversion program. The programs that create MP3 type audio files are referred to as rippers. You might have come across the term, ripping an audio file. This actually means that the audio file is being converted to the MP3 format.

The process of ripping audio files works on the principle that, many of the audio frequencies that are present in an audio file are not heard by the human ear. The ripper (program that rips) takes off content that is in these unheard frequencies, this obviously reduces the physical size of the file. Another thing that you should know is that, special devices are required to play back MP3 music files. You could play MP3 files on most computers by using a special program. Your computer will need a pair of speakers or a headset to let you listen to the MP3 music files. Portable MP3 players are today available in small convenient sizes. Infact some of these MP3 music players could be easily hung around your neck. A pair of headphones or a small set of external speakers can be used to listen to the MP3 files recorded on these MP3 players. Technology has made such MP3 players very affordable, you could get a MP3 player that holds upto 300 music tracks or songs in MP3 format for under 50 U.S$. This might sound unbelievable but you can see the impossible right here at:

Thursday, September 18, 2008

AntiVirXP08, Spyware NOT Anti Virus Software Beware Of Anti Vir XP 08

Beware Of AntiVirXP08, It Is Not An Anti Virus Software
This is not an anti virus software, it shows a big count for viruses present on your computer. You are even given the option to buy the licence for AntiVirXP08 by using your credit card online. This is a spyware and will most probably hijack your credit card information and misuse it. Similar malware has spread before by the names of XP AntiVirus and WinAntiVirusPro. There are a number of malware and trojans that come bundled into this code, you will need to get rid of all of them when cleaning up your system. Most solutions suggest that you remove the AntiVirXP08 manually, get expert help if you are not technically qualified. There is a possibility of using valid data and information from the computer during the process of cleaning the AntiVirXP08.
The main steps involved in cleaning your computer for the Anti Vir XP 08 infection are:
(a) Unregister related DLL files.
(b) Stopping AntiVirXP08 processes.
(c) Finding and deleting AntiVirXP08 related files.
(d) Removing AntiVirXP08 registry values.
The infection is triggered when a user clicks a link, for this reason avoid clicking unknown links. It is also possible that certain websites are infected (knowingly or unknowingly) with this malware. Accessing those sites might increase the chances of you receiving and clicking a link.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Will The Spread Of Mobile Internet Reduce Traffic?

Few cities have reported an ease in traffic congestion after the rise in oil prices. It appears that, most people love to drive. The grumbling about traffic jams and high oil prices has not reduced in any way though. A few technical gurus are now on a major 'think trip'. They feel that providing high speed internet access in public buses and trains might pull people off the car. The time that you spend behind the wheel in traffic snarls and waiting for the signals to change colors could be better utilized. Hand held devices fed with high speed internet could allow you to get a lot done, only if you did not have to be engaged behind the steering wheel. You could read emails, answer emails, work on price quotes, check the latest stock values and ofcourse even watch the news on the television. Devices are today available in a compact size to do all this and more, all that they need is a continuous connection to a high speed internet service.

It is felt that people might choose to use public transport instead of being engaged in tedious driving routines. This might happen in a few cities where a large number of people drive to work. The expenses to hire a professional driver are high in the U.S and most European countries. As far as Asian countries like Thailand are concerned, the use of the Internet to do serious business transaction or development is still in it's infancy. Look at the public transport bus and train services in any metropolitan city of India, and you will realize that the overcrowded conditions would really not allow any cool internet surfing. And remember that people who drive a car don't carry just only a pocket sized berry to work. Feeling comfortable with all these in a public transport service might take some time to adjust. So most people would continue to drive to work, they would continue to grumble regarding the traffic but life would go on.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Hacking And Malware Victim Almost Goes To Jail, The Bad Guy Gets Away.

In early 2007, Michael Fiola was fired from his job. His I.T Department found some really bad material on his computer, these included child pornography images. No one really likes such a man, family and friends abandoned him. Legal proceedings would start soon and Michael would most certainly spend over a dozen years in jail. Michael denied any wrong doing and caused many observers to comment that it was typical for a child pornographer to behave that way. His wife was the only one who believed his story and stood by him during those terrible moments. It took the services of an extremely talented and hard working forsenic investigator, to bring out the truth. As it turned out, the images on the laptop were pretty bad and would prove to be juicy proof in the legal hearing. However it was not Michael who downloaded them, the images appeared on the machine without his knowledge and without any action on his part.

It turned out that the Massachusetts state service that gave Michael the computer was to blame. The I.T department of this office had issued him a laptop that was not well protected. This caused the laptop to be infested with several malware program all without the knowledge of Michael! The story ended well for Michael but it is quite likely that many other computer users could be faced with a similar program. A hacked computer could have it's security compromised and become a puppet, controlled by pranksters and probably fraudsters. The public in general and the legal system in particular has no sympathy for victims like Michael. With the rapid spread of computer and internet usage, frauds related to this technology have managed to keep pace too.

Frightening possibilities exist, a terrorist organization could spread propoganda by sending emails through a computer which had it's security compromised! The U.S could then have the innocent victim rotting in a high security torture prison in the many islands and nations that allow it to open such prisons. Losing a job or being shunned by family members, would be very light as compared to facing systematic physical and mental torture by state investigators. It is unlikely that any lessons will be learned in such cases. The perpetuators of Internet crimes are rarely caught. Special deals with law makers often leave the few that are caught with a light sentence.

There is a very interesting view point that the author of this article would like to make. When you buy a licensed software like MS Windows or MS Office, you do not become the owner of the software. The amount you pay for the licence is something like a rental charge for using the software. It would be illegal to reverse code the software and make any changes to it even if, you are an expert. The reasoning is that, you do not own the software (just rented it) and therefore cannot make any modifications to the software. At the same time, the software publisher (eg. Microsoft) can at any time stop supporting the software and return nothing to you. Given this scenario, it would mean that any security loopholes in the rented software, are the responsibility of Microsoft. The responsibility should not be limited to Microsoft publishing a patch on their website and hoping that you will download it. The resulting damage caused by the security bug should also be compensated for, wait a moment before you criticize this comment. Software publishers are always raising hell regarding piracy and are quick to point out that a software is intellectual property, much like a pen, book, car or house. If this is so let's compare this to renting a house. Let's assume that there was a secret door in the house that you rented, the landlord never informed you regarding this secret door. A thief enters through that door and burgles your house, would the landlord not be held responsible. So let's treat a security loophole in a software as the publisher's (landlord's) respobsibility. The ensuing damages caused by a fraudster exploiting the security loophole should be compensated for by the software publishers. If this is done, the software houses would make a desperate dash to get hold of the fraudsters and the internet would become a safer place to browse, learn, transact and relax in.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Smaller Storage Devices Bring Bigger Data Security Problems

If you have been staying updated with the latest in storage devices, few issues are glaring. The first is that storage devices are growing smaller, thumbdrives have today become lighter, smaller and slimmer. The second thing is that, the storage capacity on these small storage devices is increasing. And ofcourse, all this is happening with a fall in price too. All this sounds great to the tech guys but wait a minute, there are several dangers too. Whether you are a personal computer user or working as an I.T manager in a huge organization, the problems posed by these small storage devices are real and they (problems) are growing.

Losing one such small storage device means that, a lot of your data could fall into alien hands. There was a very interesting and alarming news report a couple of years ago. The report mentioned that, a local town market in Afghanistan had vendors selling used thumb drives! A small investigation by the mighty and powerful U.S army in the vicinity revealed something quite unbelievable. These thumb drives infact belonged to the U.S army and had information stored by army personnel. The data was probably outdated and they decided to discard the thumb drives. These landed in dustbins and the garbage collectors innocently sorted out the garbage and tried to sell them in the local market.

Office computers face another threat from these small storage devices. It is very easy for staff to bring in a thumb drive and load confidential information into the drive. The devices are so small that they can be hidden in shoes, waterbottles etc. A leading jeweler in Asia once faced a situation where one of their designers actually copied the companies designs on to a thumb drive. She then slipped the thum drive into her high ankle shoes and tried to pass security. High security in a jewelry factory ensured that the incident was quickly caught and reported. However, you surely cannot expect this level of security to be maintained in all industries.

Finally, mobile phones with cameras equipped with high capacity small storage devices continue to pose severe security threats. Video clips and images of confidential documents, products and even office and factory layouts can be recorded on these phones. The information can either be carried home in the device or, emailed through the device right out of the office. These phones have their own internet connections and need not tresspass on company networks.

Warning: Information leaked through mobile phones is not easy to detect. Most organizations check belongings of staff only when they leave office. This is not done when staff enters the office. The staff can safely get in a mobile phone equipped with a camera and audio recording facility. The confidential information recorded can include data files, images, video clips and even voice recordings. Once done, the information can be emailed out of the office right from the desk of the staff. The internet connection used is not related to the company network so cannot be intercepted. The staff can then erase the information and leave the mobile phone in the office when going home. A security check at the gate will not find the mobile phone and the information would have left the office without anyones knowledge!!!.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Skype Exposes A HUGE Internet Explorer Farce

Here is something that most techies already know but will easily go down as one of the greatest farces of our time. If you have made attempts to block out skype usage from your computer or network you would already be a victim of this cheap loophole in Microsoft Internet Explorer. Firstly, activate the built in firewall in windows, then specifically choose to block the Skype program on your computer. Save the firewall settings and once again check back to make sure that the firewall settings are as you wished them to be.

Now start skype, try to login and wow, Bill opens the Gates for the skype program. You will be able to successfully login to your skype account and do a normal usage. Now back to the windows firewall settings, here is the surprise. The firewall would have selected Skype as one of the programs that CAN run on your system. And who ever gave skype the authority to do this, well Bill Gates was probably so busy buying and taking over companies that he never knew when he would pocket Skype. So... he allowed that program to conveniently open up the firewall for itself.

We have news that many other programs have the ability to do this trick and play havoc with your firewall. We also heard that microsoft actually helps softwared developers learn how to do this neat 'trick' at your expense. In our opinion this is downright cheating and manipulation as the user of the windows software was never told that the owner of windows might allow certain softwares to overwrite your firewall settings. In pure technical terms this would be hacking, but in terms of business microsoft refers to these software developers as business partners or value added retailers!!!.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Remote Management Of Your Router, Important Information

Useful For Non-Technical Computer Users Too

Routers whether wired or wireless, have certain setup procedures. These procedures control important functions that include who, can access your network, when, for what type of applications etc. To do this, the router needs to be connected to a computer, the computer then accesses the router set up interface and allows the user to configure various parameters. Let us call the computer to which the router is connected (for configuration purposes) as, COMP-A. The user sitting on COMP-A would access the router set up screen through a web browser, enter the required password, make the set up changes and then save the configuration.

It does not matter whether COMP-A is connected or not connected to the Internet during the configuration process. However, technically it is possible to allow any computer connected to the Internet to access the router through a web browser. This is a process that is referred to as 'Remote Management' and most technically minded users would be aware of this. But what we need to do is take care of those users who install a router and are not very technically savvy.

If you do not understand the meaning and implications of remote management of your router, disable the feature. You will still be able to configure your router through the computer to which it is physically connected and that is good enough. Allowing remote computers to access your router through the Internet requires a few important precautions to be taken. You will need to restrict the access to a specific IP address or a group of IP addresses. It is always advisable to change the password required to access the router to something that is different from the 'default' password, this is always a good thing to do.

Enabling the remote management function for your router, could allow others to access your router and reset important parameters that relate to the security of your network. So if you are not sure about how to do a proper control when remote management is open, you can either take the services of a professional or disable the router remote management function.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Digital Cameras, The Aperture Preferred Mode

The popularity of digital cameras has grown rapidly, it has also been responsible for the decline of conventional film based cameras. The 'point-and-shoot' ease of operating a digital camera, makes the whole process look like child's play. However there are a few professional tips that would allow you to get better images from your digital camera.

Most budding photographers use the 'Auto' feature for taking images with their digital camera but, this might not give the best result in all situations. In the 'auto' mode, the camera is programmed to set the aperture and exposure time of your digital camera, you just accept the results that you get. Let us know take the situation where you need to take the image of a building, the building is sufficiently far away for you to frame it in the shooting window. However the light conditions are not ideal, your camera in Auto mode would translate the scene as follows.

The light around the image would be calculated, the camera would set the aperture and exposure time for your digital camera. It is likely that you will get a dark image, the exposure time might be too long for a humanly held digital camera. This will mean that the image is out of focus and dark, but what if you wanted a better exposed image with little or no camera motion.

Firstly, you would set the digital camera to the 'Aperture Preferred Mode', this is often marked as 'P' on many digital cameras. The aperture is also called the 'f'-number and could be in the range of f4, f5.6, f8, f11, f22 etc. The larger the aperture number the smaller the aperture. The aperture is like a hole controlling the amount of light that will pass through the lens. The more the light passing through the lens the better the exposure, remember that there is a possibility of over-exposure too. As the aperture number increases (the aperture size decreases), the portion of the scene that remains in focus (depth of field/focus) increases. The bigger focus area is ideally suited to take images of buildings and monuments.

So the first thing that you will need to do when in the Aperture Preferred Mode is to, set an aperture number that is as high as possible. This will mean that the aperture size gets reduced and the amount of light passing through the lens decreases. To compensate for this, the camera will (automatically) set a slower shutter speed which, will in turn allow more light to pass through the lens. So you now have a smaller aperture size (large aperture number) and a slow shutter speed. A slow shutter speed will most likely cause your hands and the digital camera to shake, this will ofcourse ruin the sharpness of the final image.

In such a situation use a sturdy camera stand (tri-pod) and mount the camera firmly on the tripod. When you have framed and composed your image, gently depress the 'shoot' button on your digital camera. The chances of the camera moving or the degree of the movement will be drastically reduced. You will end up with a sharper and better exposed image. There are a few devices that can help you trigger the 'shoot' button more smoothly (no chance of moving). One of these devices is a cable that fits on to the 'shoot' button. The other end of the cable has a trigger button that can be depressed to shoot the image. With technical advancements, many digital cameras today have an option to trigger the shoot with a wireless device.

Experiment with the 'aperture preferred' mode on your digital camera, the results will gradually become more impressive. The aperture preferred mode is an option that lies between the 'auto' (completely automatice) mode and the 'manual' (both aperture and shutter speed are manually set) modes.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Beware Of Shipments To Singapore, Indonesia And Nigeria

There is an alert from our network security team. This online fraud is not new but seems to shown a strong revival in the past few months. You receive an email from a prospective 'buyer' requesting for payment mode clarification. The email would read more or less like the content shown below.....

I am xyz from Singapore (or Indonesia or Nigeria) and would like to buy some items from your website. But before I do this, I need to know if you accept Visa (or Mastercard or AMEX). Let me have this information and I will place the order.

Another fraud which is similar to this has the content as shown below:

I have seen your website and would like to buy 50 pieces of 22k Gold Chains payment will be through my AMEX card. I will need you to ship these chains to my retail stores in Nigeria.

The important thing about the the 22k Gold Chains mention is that, the cybercrook picks up the exact title of some merchandise that is listed on your website. The words are so similar that it is very likely that a cut and paste operation was used for the text.

Beware of these online frauds, stay away from such emails and delete them the moment they arrive. What is alarming is the text content, it has a surprising uniformity and has remained this way for many years now. There is every possibility that, one large group of fraudsters is behind this fraud. Many honest and budding online sellers have got financially ruined by falling for this internet fraud. The thought of being able to make a big sale brings about an excitement and not even a small degree of caution is felt.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Read Before You Try To, Boil Water In A Microwave

The convenience and speed with which cooking can be done in a microwave oven is truly impressive. Many people even use the microwave to boil water for a quick cup of tea or coffee. You should however be ware of a dangerous thing that could occur when you try to boil water in a microwave oven.

It is highly advisable to place a wooden spoon or even a tea bag along with the water in the microwave oven. Technically the water in the microwave gets superheated, this can prove dangerous if there is only water in the container that is placed in the microwave oven. A slight jerk or movement to the vessel with water that is superheated can cause the water to 'burst' out of the vessel.

There have been cases of accidents reportedly caused by boiling water in a microwave. If you can avoid it, use a stove or other heating decide to boil water. But, if you must boil water in a microwave oven, read the report on this topic at this link:

Friday, April 25, 2008

Instant Messengers, The Good and The Bad

Instant messengers like MSN and Skype are widely used today. Businesses also draw benefits from these IMs (Instant Messengers), communication is fast and cheap, sometimes totally free. While the use of IMs for personal communication is hard to avoid, businesses need to be aware of dangers posed by Instant Messengers. We have come across companies that boast of high security, laptops are given to only a very few select managers, office systems cannot be accessed from outside the office, no one is allowed to bring in or take out storage devices like CDs and thumbdrives etc. The company proudly claimed that since the last 2 years, staff and workers have been given instructions not to carry mobile phones (cell phones) into or out of the office too.

On walking through the office we noticed almost every desk loaded with an active session of MSN messenger, some computers had Skype installed too. The managers were boasting of the communication costs saved by using these IMs. Fax and telephone bills across branch offices were almost completely eliminated. It was certainly a great achievement but most of them were not aware of other hazards created by these Instant Messengers. The fact is that almost any type of document or image can be sent out of the office by merely clicking a few keys on the Internet Messenger software. Staff did not have to play tricks with the security staff, physical checking would reveal nothing. By using a scanner and digital camera, no information in the office was confidential. You could even use the mircophone attached to these IMs and record voice inside the office, then send the file right out of the premises through the IM itself!

It might be useful to stay updated with such information, avoid problems before they occur and stop living with a false sense of security. Get more information at this link:

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Forgetting Children In Cars, Technology Comes To The Rescue

It is not uncommon to hear about children being forgotten in cars. There have been cases reported where, children aged even below 1 year have been forgotten by parents and baby sitters in cars. One possible reason is that a baby is normally kept in a baby seat that is behind the drivers seat. Mothers in a hurry, turn off the air conditioner or heating system, get off the car and then lock the door. What follows is a sad story, innocent infants exposed to terrific heat or biting cold.

There are few suggestions for mothers to follow, the idea is to remind the parent that the baby is in the back seat of the car. One suggestion is to place the baby's diaper bag on the front seat next to the driver. It is expected that anyone getting off the car will notice the bag and remember the baby. Another option could be for the mother to keep her handbag on the back seat near the baby.

Technology now seems to have come up with useful devices too. One such device consists of two portions. One portion is latched on to the baby seat, the other portion could be kept along with car keys of the diver. When the driver walks away with his portion a sensor is activated. This devices senses the physical separation of the two portions, when the distance between the two portions exceeds a few feet, an alarm is sounded. The driver who just walked away from the car is alerted about the child left alone in the car.

Most people comment that forgetting children in cars is related to negligence on the part of elders. While this could be true or false, the important thing is to protect innocent infants and keep them away from danger. Help could come from sharpening ones memory or through advancements in technology. Get more information on this topic at:

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Inkjet Printing Problems, It Is Often In The Head!!!

Inkjet printers have become very cheap, this is as far as the printer goes. Consumables like ink catrdiges have remained at high price levels, allowing printer manufacturers to survive. Users have found cheaper substitutes for replacing ink catridges.

There are a few options here, one of the popular ways to get more mileage out of printer catridges is to get the refilled. Such services are very popular in many Asian countries. You are sometimes sold a plastic bottle of the ink and a plastic syringe, feel free to refill the cartridge yourself!!!!. Another option is going for a fake catridge, this means that you get the brand label on the catridge pack but it is not a genuine product. The law is after such manufacturers but it seems that the law is far behind in catching up with them. Another popular offering is ink catridges is products made and labelled by third party manufacturers. They do not infringe on copyright issues and are therefore openly sold even in reputed I.T outlets.

The problem faced by many users is where the printer prints the document with bad colors, very light colors or fine lines throughout the document. Tell the computer technician about this and they will be quick to ask you whether you are using a genuine ink catridge! While it is true that the quality of the ink catridge could affect the printing quality, a simpler explanation can sometimes be found. Below is an explanation and a possible solution too.

Take the ink catridge out of the printer, notice that there are elongated spindles on the printer that go through corresponding holes in the printer catridge. These will remain fixed to the printed even after the ink catridge is taken off. At the tip of these spindles are several tiny holes, this is where the problem is most often observed. The holes seem to get clogged with dust or proably residue from dried ink. Cleaning these would in many cases solve the problem, if you take your printer to the service center discuss about this possibility and get the spindle cleaned. Do this before you pay a big bill for repair, a new printer or a 'genuine' ink catridge. The clog holes block the passage of fresh ink, this sometimes causes the ink to spill out of the ink catridge and into the printer.

While we do not assure you of success in every case, this is what we have learnt to smartly do in our office. Put some acetone (we use nailpolish remover!!!!) in a refillable perfume spray bottle. First, take the ink catridges out of the printer. Turn the printer off and take off the power connection from the socket. Look for the spindles and notice the tiny holes at the tip of each spindle. If you cannot notice either the spindles or the holes, forget trying any home remedy and take the printer to the service center. If you are lucky enough to notice the spindles and the tiny holes, spray some of the acetone on the spindles. With a soft cloth or earbuds, gently rub the tips of the spindles near the tiny holes. Spray a little more acetone and then put back the ink catridges. Now turn on the printer and try to print, use some rough paper as the first few prints might appear messy. A few printed pages later, you should be seeing a drastic improvement in print quality.

: The above process is recommended for users with fairly sound knowledge of computers and printers. The process is something that we have tried and found to be successful, it is not endorsed by any ink jet printer manufacturers.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Now Use Your Cell Phone On A Flight!!

There was some great news recently, this related to the possibility of using a cell phone on a flight. Most flights had an inbuilt phone that could be used to make calls, the airlines charged a fortune for each call but the quality was terrible. It has now been confirmed that, passengers in many flights through Europe might be able to make phone calls using their cell phone. The report also mentioned that this could become a reality within the year 2008.

So are you wondering about those onboard instructions that asked you to turn off your cell phone when aboard? The airlines complained that the cell phone emitted signals that could disturb delicate flying instruments. Well the song in this case is a bit different, we are told that the new system of making calls on flight will get signals from satellites and not from ground stations. That is the safety factor being taken care off but, another problem persists.

Could you imagine the amount of noise that would be generated by people chatting over their cell phones during the flight. Most people would need to raise their voice to make up for the internal noise that is always present in an aircraft. This would get quite interesting as people chatted away in different languages, moods and on different subjects. One can imagine the chaos if, all the adjacent passengers in a row decided to make their cell call on flight. There does not seem to be any thought given to this issue so far, it is unlikely that any satisfactory solution might be found. This is a classic case of technology moving ahead of real life situations!

Wireless Network Security, The Glaring Issues

If you have ever used a wireless network, it is unlikely that you will ever want to go back and used a wired network. While there is no reason why you should not be pleased with the easy and comfort of a wireless network, keep a few important things in mind.

Extra ease
: If all you need to do to access your wireless network, is turn on your laptop, think again. There is no technology that can restrict the access of your wireless network just within your home or apartment. This would mean that a neighbor or anyone in the active vicinity of your wireless network could also access your network!

umb password: Most manufacurers of wireless network equipment prefer to make the process of installing and using the equipment very easy. Buyers are thrilled with a wireless network that can be set up in minutes. It sure does make the work of technical support easy by using a standard password across all the wireless equipment that is produced. But this could be your nightmare, every hacker would be aware of the standard passwords used by each equipment manufacturer. Get smart, refer to the manual that came with your wireless equipment and read the section dedicated to changing the password, change your password as soon as possible.

Always on: There was a time when internet access was expensive, billing was done based on hours or even minutes of usage. That changed and most Internet Service Providers today provide unlimited usage for a flat monthly fee. With this change most users leave their computers and wireless access equipment turned on, all the while. An always on network is a hackers dream, programmed algorithms are used to generate millions of passwords that can be released on to your network. Even the remote possibility of finding the right password can cause serious problems for innocent victims. It is a good idea to turn off your internet access equipment when the computer is not being used.

The technicals: If you are technically minded, you could add a few more chinks to your security armour. If you are not technically qualified, get professional help to implement a few security measures. These are very important for any wireless network so do not overlook them. Firstly, change the password for your wireless network device every 2 to 3 weeks. Find the settings of the equipment that controls the wireless device from 'broadcasting' itself and turn it off. Work on the MAC address and WEP security settings.

None of the above measures will bring 100% security to your wireless network. But that should not keep you away from implementing these and other measures. Network security is much like being a safe driver, you still know that a druken driver could lead you into an accident but, that does not stop you from being a safe driver. The people who could do damage to your network could be simple pranksters or professional hackers. The professionals know every trick of the trade but fortunately the simple pranksters outnumber them!