Computer Services

100 Wicks Rd. Brentwood, NY 11717

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Beware of the Toolbar

The Tool Bar from Hell

Let me count the ways and the whys this is all wrong.

We have opened a window of Fireforx, a very popular web browser, but half the screen is covered by tool bars. So the actual space left for the browser to do the browsing is… well, not much. Less than half a screen (the withe part on the bottom).

Of course this wasn’t the only problem with the computer. This is just what jumped at me and made me fall off my chair. How did this happen? Or why?! The answer is not that simple, but let me try.

Firefox, like the that other browser (what is it called? IE?) has this feature where you can install tool bars to do… well, pretty much anything. You have Babel for translation, the Weather thingy for the weather, Yahoo for… Yahoo and so on an so forth. The truth is that nobody wants these. Or, to put it another way, I haven’t found anybody that sets up a computer and says: Wait a minute, I’m not finished! Let me download this toolbar! Nobody does it. That’s why the toolbars are like a disease, you get them when you are trying to get something else.

So beware. Beware when you are installing that free program. Do not just press Next, Next, Next… and keep going to the end. Sometimes it pays to stop to read and understand what’s going on. If you don’t want the toolbar, just say no.  

If you ever have this problem or anything like this, please visit us at Computer Services in Brentwood, NY. We’ll not only fix your computer but your story may end up in the blog.


The New Web Page

The new Computer Services web page is up and running, you can check it out here and add your comments somewhere at the bottom. I was trying to go for cute/funny but I’m not sure this is a good marketing strategy. Every Virus is a annoyance and they usually strike when you are busy beyond your schedule. The deadline is looming close and you have to finish a proposal before 5:00 and you get a pop up telling you that your computer has been infected, that you have to upgrade… blah, blah, blah…

That’s why I’m not sure about my depiction of the Viruses. Cute? I don’t think so. Funny? Are you kidding me? This is serious stuff.

On the other and, I could have gone the other way and paint the classic picture of rusting computers, or reproduce the annoying messages: Your computer has been infected! Visit this link… 

Thank you but no, thank you. Life is too short to focus on the bad. The good is that you can bring your computer today and have it ready tomorrow. And life goes on.

When you get an iPhone

When you get an iPhone

When they give you an iPhone you are getting a tiny hell full of flowers, a piece of black glass where you can see the world. Not only you get the iPhone, so happy birthday to you and we hope that it lasts because it was designed in Cupertino; they are not just giving you that little computer that you will carry in your pocket and take everywhere you go. They give you – they don’t know it, that’s the terrible thing – they give you a new fragile and precarious piece of yourself, something that is you but it’s not part of you, something you have to get into your pocket or hang on your belt every time you leave the house. They give you the need to plug it in every night so it doesn’t stop being an iPhone; they give you the obsession to answer your emails at anytime and in the most unusual places. They give you the fear of losing it, or dropping it, or that it will come near a really strong magnetic field and forget all the things that it remembers for you. They give you the obligation to know everything… the weather, the stock price, the address of a restaurant, the ingredients of a recipe or the information of a flight. They give you the tendency to compare your phone with other phones, phones that you don’t have but could’ve had. When they give you an iPhone they are not giving you a phone, you are given, you are offered to the iPhone for his birthday.

Dedicated to the Dude, of course, who got an iPhone this week. With apologies to Cortázar, author extraordinaire who wrote the original piece. My version in spanish can be found here.

Windows Phone 7

Windows Phone 7 is out and it looks pretty cool. It seems that my prediction on a previous post is about to be refuted. But only time will tell.

After the Kin disaster, Microsoft managed not only to make some commercials that look good (see below, really?), but also an operating system that actually works. (really?)

Here are some of the points that might help Phone 7.

1. The interface is cool. I have never been near a Zune, but some people claim that once you get pass the hideousness of the hardware, the software is almost good. Phone 7 borrows a lot of elements from the Zune and that’s good.

2. Microsoft is taking an approach very much like Apple’s, and is requiring its hardware partners to meet a rigid criteria in order to run Windows Phone 7. Each device must feature three standard hardware buttons, for example, and before they can ship with WP7, they have to pass a series of tests directed by Microsoft. By contrast, Google doesn’t subject manufacturers to similar testing criteria. And we’re seeing the consequences: Some touchscreens work better than others, some apps don’t work on one version of Android while they do on another, and some manufacturers are even loading bloatware onto Android devices. Most importantly, a consistent user experience will help customers understand what they’re getting when they’re shopping for a Windows phone.

3. Microsoft’s got apps, really? For business users, Microsoft’s inclusion of Office apps will be a huge lure. And there are a few important apps available right out of the gate, including Netflix, eBay, Twitter and Slacker radio.

4. Microsoft’s supposed to have games. Apple’s success with games for the iPhone has given Microsoft a clue on what a lot of people do with their smartphones: play. Integration with the Xbox 360won’t hurt, either.

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