BDA TV Software issues and removal hint

I recently wanted to try out a new High-Definition tuner for my computer, and CompUSA had one on sale. The Hauppauge WinTV-HRV-950 was pretty new, but had some good reviews. Basically, all I wanted to do was see how it looked on a computer, and how many Over The Air (OTA) channels I could get.

Ended up installing it on my laptop and both of my desktops, and wasn’t too impressed. Software was very 1999-ish, and the picture quality seemed OK. Most importantly, I didn’t pick up any extra TV channels, so I was finished with it. It’ll be listed on eBay pretty soon.



Anyway, I uninstalled all of the Hauppauge software that was in the Add/Remove Programs section of my control panel. On each of my computers, I still had an item in my System Tray (down by the clock) that said BDA TV Monitor.

BDA TV Monitor
Continue reading “BDA TV Software issues and removal hint”

Taking down the bad guys (on the Internet, at least)

Trying something educational for the blog today…you may have seen (or maybe not) the web site created to present information about Martin Luther King, called martinlutherkingdotorg (substitute the dot for a real dot!) There is a catch to the site, which I’m not going to spoil right away…ask me about it when you get a chance. Anyway, some education bloggers (and other bloggers) are trying a web experiment to GoogleBomb the martinlutherkingdotorg site off the Google first page of results. I figured I’d do my part…

Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King

And I was considering a Tivo

Best Buy and others are advertising a new 80-hour Tivo on sale, for free after rebate. I was considering calling my brother and suggesting we get my parents one for Christmas. I had recently read a post on PVRWire that gave 10 suggestions to enhance the Tivo experience, and was intrigued at the possibilities of a machine in your living room that could handle almost everything you have to walk back to your desktop computer to do.

Tivo officially messed that up today, announcing a HUGE rate increase, from $12.95 to $19.95 (1-year subscription). Given the option between the well-received interface of Tivo and the sub-par interface of a cable company’s DVR (with High-definition available) for somewhere around $9, who is going to pony up the hardware cost AND massive monthly charge for a Tivo?

There has to be another company to step forward and offer what Tivo offers, for much less.

Google Apps

I finally did it…I moved my email over to Gmail on your Domain. Now, it’s Google Apps for Your Domain, but still, I did it. Took overnight for my email to begin showing up in the familiar Gmail interface. I can still access my old emails on my old hosting server by using the old login information, but all my new email is available on the web or via POP.

Spam Filtering: In only 6 days, I have 141 messages in my Spam folder, and none has made it to my inbox. My old provider didn’t have any worthwhile Spam filtering. I almost miss the Spam offerings.
Speed — the Gmail interface is super-fast. Easy to use, intuitive, and quick. I am getting used to the threaded responses on emails with the same subjects (re:).
Universal location — my old email provider offered WebMail via Squirrelmail, but it was super-slow and painful to use, making me resort to using Thunderbird or Outlook for my email. That was fine, if I had my desktop or laptop. If not, I was up a creek. Now, I can access the webmail quickly and easily, and even on my cell phone!

Dislikes: No IMAP — when I access my email on Thunderbird or Outlook, I have to use POP mail, making me download everything. Oddly enough, my sent messages get downloaded as well…all my email (sent and received) is in the same folder. That’s taking some getting used to.
I’m looking forward to using the Calendar feature more with my wife…coordinating calendars should be a life-saver! I already use the Google Calendar for all sorts of things, so I’m moving over everything to my domain.

Well worth the time it took to move the MX records over. If anyone is interested, I’ll post my how-to steps online…post a comment and I’ll follow up.

Robert Scoble addresses Web Calendars

Robert Scoble (one of the top bloggers) is being forced to use Google Calendar at his new job at and doesn’t like it. As a former Microsoft employee, he’s used to Outlook, as is 95% of the world. He recently commented that he didn’t like GCal, and was asked to justify his issues with it.

I think he’s missing a few features in GMail, like Add to Calendar in the top right side of an email when GMail detects a date (doesn’t always work).

Google Calendar is something I’d love to see work…I need it to sync with Outlook and my PocketPC. Sync, not just a one-way copy. I want others who have permission to see my calendar to be able to add to my calendar (which can be done right now), and then have that synced with my PocketPC so I have my events offline as well (which can’t be done right now).

I’m among the many that those features and more will be added, and soon!

Wikipedia adds new feature – Cite This Article

I’ve had my students use Wikipedia, as have many classroom teachers. My 7th graders are just learning to research and use the Internet for research, and they are certainly not masters of citing sources. The biggest thing I try to accomplish with my students and research is the process, not necessarily the final “perfect” result.

One thing we work on is citing sources. Web page citations can be difficult sometimes, with huge web addresses or not noticable authors. Wikipedia has added a handy new feature – Cite This Article. From anywhere inside wikipedia (the linked example is to the article on webmastering), click on ‘Cite This Article’ to get the full citation in 9 different formats, including MLA and APA.

I’ll probably use this in the classroom this year, along with teaching my students how to analyze facts found online. I’ll have them create their own citation, then check it with the Wikipedia citation. Should be helpful!

read more | digg story

Picasa Web Albums

I use Picasa to manage my photos. It’s a great program that works very quickly and allows you to index and categorize your photos very easily. It manages your photos from your camera, memory card, or other source, and imports them into the program. It allows you to do basic editing to the pictures, including red-eye reduction, cropping, changing to black and white, etc. It also does a great job helping you backup your photos. In Picasa, you can directly upload your pictures to a web page of your own, or even upload them to various online photo processors with ease. I love using Walgreen’s uploading, as we can pick them up at the local store in about an hour.

They have recently created a Web Album system that allows the user to directly upload their pictures from Picasa to Google servers. From here, you can share your pictures with the world, or only to people that you send a direct link to. You get 250 MB of space for free, and can buy 6 Gigs for $25/year! That is a great price, and would hold almost everyone’s pictures that they would be interested in sharing.

I’ve created a photo album of our recent trip to the Georgia Aquarium…some good pictures, especially this one:

Evan at the Aquarium

Evan at the Georgia Aquarium

Gmail on Your Domain

I’ve been accepted for Gmail on Your Domain, and would like to move my email over to Gmail. I don’t have anything in my email that I’m really concerned about having on Google’s servers, and they run a very good webmail program.

I’m looking for anyone who might use Gmail for your personal domain-based mail. If you do, IM/Skype me or post something in the comments.

Specifically, I need to be able to access my email on a laptop at work, desktop at home, and on the web when on the road. Does Gmail for your Domain work for you?

Don’t know what I’m talking about? Post a comment!

Blog Reading

I’ve been doing some blog reading lately…one of my favorite one right now is by Robert Scoble at the Scobleizer. He was hired by Microsoft about 3 years ago to run a blog for them, giving a personal side to Microsoft. It also has turned into an avenue for Microsoft to gather comments from the public about various things that they’re doing.

I hate that I didn’t start reading him years ago, as he’s leaving Microsoft for a Podcasting company called He’s very smart about business and people, and a great blogger when it comes to putting his thoughts down on the keyboard as he has them, so there are new topics often.

I think anyone who works in a management division of a business should read what he writes…if for no other reason, just to be aware of how blogs can be used to promote the company. Continue reading “Blog Reading”