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Nov. 22, 2008—Vol. 12, No. 47
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CLICK & FIND MY RADIO SHOW IN YOUR HOMETOWN
I'd really like you to call me. After all, they call it "talk radio" for a reason. You can join in the fun. I'm sure you have at least one question about something digital. I'm here to help with unbiased advice.
IMPORTANT NOTE : The Kim Komando Show "Annual Great Giveaway" starts this weekend. Details about how to enter and what you can win are a few paragraphs down. Over $80,000 in prizes.
HERE'S HOW TO CALL ME DURING THE SHOW
NO PREEMPTIONS! DOWNLOAD & LISTEN WHEN YOU WANT!
AMERICAN FORCES RADIO & THANKS
GET READY FOR BLACK FRIDAY DEALS
Stores will offer $300 laptops. They'll be great bargains with large screens and full-sized keyboards. Look for $100 Blu-ray Disc players. Pick up an entry-level digital SLR with a good lens for under $450.
To get the bargains, you need a plan. I found three sites that list what's rumored to be on sale and where on Black Friday. To check the deals out, click here, and you'll be whisked away to the links on my site. You'll want to check each site. The circulars supposedly come from inside sources; each site may have different circulars posted.
YEA! OVER $80,000 IN PRIZES TO GIVE AWAY STARTING THIS WEEKEND
My studios are overflowing with great prizes. Here's a peek at what you could win: Nikon D90 Ultimate Camera Kit, Garmin GPS, Shure earbuds, Adobe photo software, Sonos Multi-room Music System, HP Touchsmart PC, GE Ssecurity system, Polk Audio entertainment system, Panasonic Blu-ray players, Microsoft goodies, Sony Playstation, Gifts.com gift cards, LG Electronics monitors, Epson printers, and more, much more!
Now, there are two ways you can win. You can win by calling the show. New this year, you can also win by entering daily at my Giveaway online.
HOW YOU CAN WIN DURING THE SHOW:
HOW YOU CAN WIN ONLINE:
And if you enter online, you are also eligible for one of the GRAND PRIZES!
Be sure to tell 10 friends and family members! And get ready to call in to my show!
Finally, don't forget about our sponsors. Be sure to check out the great prizes on the Great Giveaway Komando.com area. The sponsors make the giveaway possible. So, if you ever want to learn more about any of the prizes, click those links (hint, hint) and you'll land at the sponsor's site.
THE BEST THINGS IN LIFE ARE FREE
Here are some of my favorite freebies from the past week. Just click on the links below to learn more about the free programs. Hurry back, thoughwe've still got plenty of ground to cover!
If you're trying to edit home movies on the cheap, DVDs pose a challenge. Most basic video-editing programs can't extract video from DVDs. I can help.
Want a tip? Bookmark my Downloads page. Just go there, and press Ctrl+D. That will add my downloads to your browser's favorites!
And remember this: If I say a program is free, it's FREE. There are sites on the Internet that sell free programs. There are also many ads on the Internet for similar programs, which aren't free. If somebody tries to charge you for a free program, back up. You've clicked on the wrong thing.
Saturday's download The holidays are really all about family. How much do you know about yours? Tracing your ancestry isn't easy. But with Thanksgiving around the corner, you might be able to put your tree together with the help of family. I've found free software to help you put your family tree together and also the best sites for geneological research.
START YOUR DAY WITH MY VIDEO OF THE DAY
Don't miss these popular videos from the past week:
Meet Ginger Arn. All of her life, Ginger wanted to dance. Now, at 93-years-old, Ginger has a new man and dance partner.
Fighter jets are amazing vehicles. They're built to push the limits of mechanical and human endurance. But they may be tougher than you can imagine.
What would happen if all humans just disappeared? National Geographic asks that very question. This video takes a look at how nature would reclaim the world.
Physics. Just say it out loud. Physics. I can't think of dryer subject. It wasn't my favorite in school. But I didn't have a professor like this one. I would probably look forward to his class.
Man is the most intelligent creature on Earth, right? A recent study challenged our mental power. The opponent? A chimp.
Saturday's video—Everyone has watched The Price Is Right. This episode has to be the most exciting ever.Sunday's video—Life can feel overwhelming sometimes. You'll meet an inspiring man in this video. He'll make you realize just how good you have it.
WANT TO SHARE MY VIDEOS?
NOTE: Are you having trouble seeing my daily video picks? Do you get a message that the video is not available? Sorry to say, it's probably not the video. It's your computer, my friend. Get help on my troubleshooting page. These problems are pretty easy to fix.
PRIVACY AND SECURITY TIP: Don't get scammed shopping online
Need to find a radio station near you? Click here to use the official Kim Komando Show Locator Map. With over 450 stations, there's a station near you.
STILL TO COME: Useful tips, important news and a few laughs!
• How to avoid taking stupid Christmas pictures
• Important security tips; and some awesome freebies!
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EATING OUT? DON'T FORGET THE COUPONS!
There's just one problem. His wife is tired of cooking dinner day in, day out! So, Charles has agreed to take the family out to eat at least once a week. He'd like to know if I have any tips for saving money on dining out.
For heaven's sake, Charles! Look at my site. Tune in to my show. My area of expertise is the digital world, not food!
I'm just yanking your chain, Charles. In fact, I do have some help for you. You'll find plenty of coupons online. These should take a bite out of your bill, so to speak.
I would start at my Downloads site. I have a great, money-saving download that will help you save at restaurants. You'll find coupons for many of your favorite restaurants. Now, these are all national, chain restaurants.
You may choose to patronize local businesses instead. In that case, you should read my handy dandy column. It lists many other places where you'll find coupons. You can save at both chain restaurants and smaller local businesses. There's something for everyone. It will even help you find the best prices on Christmas gifts.
I must commend you for being so responsible with your finances. It's good to know that my tips are helping you out. For those who still need a little guidance, head over to my Money Center. You'll find a bounty of tips that will help you save—and make—money. You'll be amazed at how easy it really is!
RECORDING FROM A PA SYSTEM THE EASY WAY
Victor would like to tap into the public address system. That way, the pastor isn't fiddling with a recorder. He wants to know if this is possible. He would also like a little help with the setup.
Well, Victor, this should be easy enough. However, I can't walk you through the process. I don't have enough information. Public address systems come in a lot of flavors.
At their hearts, PA systems are pretty simple. They have microphones, amplifiers and speakers. So, PA systems aren't all that different from stereos.
The amplifier should have a line out jack. Connect the recorder to the amplifier via a cable.
I'll bet the PA system requires an RCA or minijack connection. The recorder should use a minijack plug. You'll find the cables you need at an electronics store. If you're unclear about the connections, take a picture with you. The sales clerk should be able to identify them for you. Once you're connected, all you need do is hit record!
Transcription is time-consuming. You probably don't want to spend a lot of time on it. So, use voice-to-text software. Converting the sermon to text will be a breeze. You can learn all about voice-to-text software in my time-saving tip.
Vista includes speech-recognition software. It isn't designed to work with audio files, though. Want to learn more about this great tool? My easy tip will get you up and going in no time!
I've also gotten a few questions in the past about videos. Unfortunately, speech-recognition software won't transcribe from videos. However, there is a work-around. Check it out in my quick tip.
DON'T GET REELED IN BY A FAKE CHARITY
The economy being what it is, charities will appreciate your help. I'm sure many people will be cutting back on charitable giving this year. I admire your sacrifice, Liz. You obviously understand the spirit of the season.
Scammers would love to cash in on your generosity. So, approach online charities cautiously. Scammers have become adept at creating legitimate-looking sites. It can be difficult to distinguish real from fake charities.
I recommend that you start at Charity Navigator. You can search for charities by geographical area or interest. It also provides a wealth of information on charities. You'll see what percentage of donations go to a charity's programs versus administrative expenses. Learn more about Charity Navigator and similar sites in my fast and easy tip.
This is also the perfect opportunity to help the troops. At Operation Komando, you can learn about sending care packages to troops stationed overseas. Start by looking at the list of most-requested items. You'll find both small-ticket and big-ticket items. And I've got help for mailing packages.In addition, check my handy Support the Troops page. It lists many other options for helping the troops!
JUST A LITTLE NOTE FROM ME
You can find many worthy organizations at Networkforgood.org and Volunteermatch.com. There's also The Salvation Army and the U. S. Marines Toys for Tots program.
You can also say thanks to our troops who will not be in their homes for the holidays. At LetsSayThanks.com, you can send a free postcard to military personnel serving overseas. I also maintain a list of various ways that you can show your support of our troops on my Web site. Click here to see the list.
These and many more great organizations will need our help this year. I know you'll do the right thing.
From my home to yours, Happy Thanksgiving! And thank you for letting me be a part of your life. I hope that I have given you at least a few things that make living in today's digital age easier and more enjoyable. It has certainly been my pleasure!
SHARE IT: Spread the word. Share the link to my OperationKomando.com site with your family, friends, teameveryone! They will thank you for it!
KEEP YOUR PC RUNNING LIKE NEW
NO PREEMPTIONS! DOWNLOAD & LISTEN WHEN YOU WANT!
DON'T STOP YET – THERE'S MORE YOU NEED TO KNOW:
• Keep reading! I have more money-saving tips!
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7 TIPS FOR BETTER CHRISTMAS PHOTOS
OK. Even Mathew Brady didn't wow anybody with Christmas photos. So the kids won't lose their socks. But you can still take wonderful Yule pictures.
Much of the following information applies to any camera. Some of it encourages you to use your settings. If you're not sure what your camera can do, check your manual. Even inexpensive cameras have some adjustable settings.
Spend a little time with these tips. You might actually impress your friends and family.All family shutterbugs should read the rest of this column. You'll be glad you did! Plus, it's free. So, just click here.
A LITTLE ABOUT ME:
HOW TO CALL ME DURING THE SHOW
• Stream your next reunion over the Internet
Back to the top
Jack knows that his guests will want to use his computer. So, he'd like to clean up his Web tracks. He'd like some help getting started.
I'm sure you're not alone, Jack. Many of us will have guests this Thanksgiving. And, we'd all like to keep our guests out of our private business.
I'll tell you how to clean out your browser in just a minute. First, though, I have a couple of questions for you.
How are you going to keep your guests out of your sensitive files? And how will you prevent them from downloading potentially dangerous software?
What I'm getting at is this: You have more to worry about than your browsing history. You need to protect your entire machine.
So, I recommend giving guests the guest account. This will protect all your sensitive data and your machine. And your Web history will be private. My easy-to-follow tip will walk you through the process of setting up the guest account.
Clearing out your Web history is easy. You just need to know where to look for the options. In Firefox, click Tools>>Options and select Privacy. In the Private Data section, click Clear Now.
In the box that opens, you can select what you'd like to delete. Select Browsing History and Cache. You can select or deselect other options. Click Clear Private Data Now.
In IE, click Tools>>Internet Options. Find the Browsing history section on the General tab. Click Delete. The box that opens gives you several options. Click Delete files and Delete history. You can also delete form data, saved passwords and cookies. When you're done, click Close.Some of your guests may bring their own laptops. In that case, you can simply add them to your network. My quick tip will make it a snap!
BUYING ANY TECH FOR THE HOLIDAYS?
A MESSAGE FROM THE KOMANDO.COM POSTMASTER
SEE SOMETHING UNDERLINED? CLICK & LEARN
GET MORE FREE TIPS FROM ME TO YOU
STILL TO COME IN THIS WEEKEND'S EDITION:
• The lowdown on the WPA crack
Back to the top
MAKE A HOLIDAY WISH
SHARE THOSE WARM THOUGHTS
STILL TO COME IN THIS WEEKEND'S EDITION:
• There are many ways to create a Webcast
KIM'S TIPS FOR KOMANDO KIDS: Top video game picks for the holidays
CONTEST SITE: Dare to Dream
FREEBIE OF THE WEEK: Greenies for your pets
FREEBIE FROM KOMANDO.COM: Get online for free
GET A COOL SITE EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK
In case you missed any this past week, here's a list of some of our favorites:
THIS WEEK'S FOCUS: Trace your family tree
Let's keep it going; there's plenty more to cover:
Brought to you by my book, Complete Guide to Computer Security & Privacy. Order your copy today!
SECURITY EXPERTS EXPECT TROJAN ATTACKS TO JUMP
This is good news, right? Not so fast! The spammers won't be deterred so easily. Many predict that spam levels will be back to normal in no time. And this is bad news for Web surfers. Spammers need to rebuild their botnets. So, there will likely be a surge in Trojans.
Surfers should take care to avoid malicious sites. Also, protect yourself from spam. I have all the help you need on my site:
THE END IS IN SIGHT, BUT I WILL BE BACK NEXT WEEK
I will be hosting a family reunion soon. Unfortunately, some family members will be unable to attend. I would still like to include them. So, I plan on Webcasting the reunion. I'm not sure where to start. Can you give me some guidance? Oh yeah, I'd also like to record the Webcast. I'd like to spend between $200 and $300.
This sounds like a great idea, Grady. Family reunions can be a lot of fun.
You have many options when it comes to Webcasting. First, you could use a network camera. These connect directly to your network. You will find both wired and wireless cameras.
Network cameras are really designed for security monitoring. That means they have many nifty features. For example, many will record video footage to your hard drive.
Using the Web, you can log in to the cameras from afar. That makes them ideal for your needs. Your family members can log in and start watching. All they need is the address for the camera.
Combine chat and the camera
A couple things will enhance the experience. First, look for a camera that lets viewers chat with each other. The chat will appear on the same page as the video. Viewers won't miss a thing.
You should also look for a camera with intercom abilities. Viewers will be able to hear as well as see what's going on. They'll also be able to speak to people at the reunion.
Now, IP cameras aren't cheap. They start around $100 and go up—way up. I would expect to pay about $200 for a camera matching your needs. So, if you were hoping for multiple cameras, you are probably out of luck.
You will find other security cameras. These can be hooked up to a special DVR for recording. These are really closed-circuit television systems. You see them used in office buildings, stores and parking garages.
CCTV systems are often a better value than buying individual network cameras. But they will likely fall outside your budget. For example, you can pick up a four-camera system with DVR for about $400.
Also, you can't buy just any CCTV system. You need to find one that is Web-ready. This will let guests log in remotely. As you would imagine, this raises the price of the system. Don't be surprised to see Web-enabled systems in the $800 range.
If you spring for one of these systems, be careful. Many require software to view them from afar. Remote family members will need to install it on their machines. Look at systems sold by Lorex, Swann and Q-See.
You could also use a regular Webcam. A number of sites will help you stream your Webcam over the Internet.
I can't really recommend this, though. That's because many people use Webcams for nefarious purposes. So, you're only a few clicks away from pornographic Webcasts. And you don't want to give Aunt Maude a heart attack! For this reason, I can't recommend a Webcam site.
Now, you may be enamored with the idea of using a regular Webcam. That's understandable. After all, you can pick one up for about $30. This is more budget friendly than other options.
Well, you can use a Webcam without exposing viewers to porn. You could use an instant messaging program that has video. AIM, Yahoo! Messenger and Windows Live Messenger are three popular ones to consider. You set up the Webcam and software. Then, invite your guests to view the Webcam. They will need the same program as you.
If you don't want to use an instant messenger, there is another option. It will just take a little more work on your part. You can use Windows Media Encoder to set up your own Webcast using a Webcam.
Patch is needed
First, you need to download the program. You can download it free from my handy Downloads site. It will work on XP with no problem. If you have Vista, you'll need to install a patch. You can get it from Microsoft's site.
Once you install the program, you're ready to get started. Connect your Webcam and microphone. When you open WME, you'll get a New Session window. Select "Broadcast a live event" and click OK.
A wizard that walks you through the setup process will open. Select your Webcam in the Video dropdown box. Select your microphone in the Audio dropdown box. Click Next.
In the next window, select "Pull from the encoder." Click Next. Click Find free port. Next, copy the contents of the "URL for Internet connections" box. This will be a series of numbers, because this is an IP (Internet Protocol) address. You will need to send this to family who will be viewing online. More on that in a minute.
Click Next. You can select a number of encoding options. I would select "Multiple bit rates" for both video and audio. Under bit rate, I would select a relative low total bitrate. For example, you might choose 548 Kbps. This will make streaming easier over slow connections. Click Next.
In the next window, you're given the option of recording the Webcast. Just select the save location and name your file. Click Next. Your streaming will be started.
Now, to view your Webcast, family members only need Windows Media Player. They just click File>>Open URL. In the box that opens, they paste the URL you were given in the wizard.
This is quite a bit of work to go through. There is also quite a bit of room for error. So, I would do a couple of test runs before you get started. Note that the URL for the Webcast can change. So, don't send it out ahead of time.
Use a Windows Media Server
There is one big limitation. Your computer is acting as the Webcast server. Only five other computers will be able to connect. You can get around this, though. You can push the video to a Windows Media Server. More people will be able to log on to view.
I imagine you don't have a Windows Media Server! Fortunately, though, you can rent access to one. There are a number of companies that will let you use theirs. This is much like Web hosting. You'll have to pay, but it shouldn't be too much. You shouldn't have to worry about stumbling across porn. The company should help you set up WME to work with its servers.
Some hosts to consider are ViaStreaming, Server Room and Stream Hoster. You'll find plans starting around $15 a month. I imagine you'll only need the service for the one day. So, make sure you're not locked into a contract. And look out for setup fees.
If none of these hosts suit you, there are others. Just search Google for "windows media server hosting" (minus quotes).
Obviously, you'll need a camera no matter which option you choose. No problem. I can help you find the ideal camera. Just head over to my site:
IF I HELPED YOU, CAN YOU PLEASE HELP ME?
1. Tell your co-workers, employees, team members, fantasy sports buddies, family members and friends to check us out. I have a form that makes it easy.
2. Link your blog, online profile or site to my site. Instructions and cool artwork await you.
Have a great weekend. Thank you for your support of my show and newsletters! I appreciate it!
MAY I HAVE ANOTHER DRUMSTICK, PLEASE?
Have a great day and I'll see you on the radio!
Give me a call! I'd love to hear from you. It takes just three easy steps: 1.) Call the LIVE broadcast. That's this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the East Coast, or, if you live on the West Coast, 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. 2.) Know the phone number. It is, of course, toll-free 1-888-825-5254. 3.) Talk to our call screener Andrew and tell him what's on your mind. That's all there is to it!
From my home to yours, HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
GET MORE TIPS FROM ME TO YOU
• Free cool site daily
• Free news links Mon-Fri
Copyright © 2008, The Kim Komando Show. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of The Kim Komando Show is prohibited and strictly enforced. Newsletters may contain links to sites on the Internet owned and operated by third parties. The Kim Komando Show is not responsible for the availability of, or the content located on or through, any such third-party site. Information in this document is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied, including but not limited to the implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and freedom from infringement. The user assumes the entire risk as to the accuracy and the use of this document. We will not be liable for any damages of any kind arising from the use of this information, including, but not limited to direct, indirect, incidental, punitive, and consequential damages.
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