Sunday, September 30, 2012

Great New iOS6 Features

OK listen up if you have an iPhone. The recent upgrade to iOS6 brought with it over 200 additional features. I am going to describe 4 of my favorites here for you. All of the features I am going to talk about here are in the settings area of the phone and can really change the way you use your phone. So here we go.

“Do Not Disturb”- With this enabled not only will your phone be silenced but it will also keep your screen from lighting up when receiving alerts. Your incoming calls will be sent directly to voice mail. This will be especially helpful when you are in the movies are in an important meeting.

To enable or disable “Do Not Disturb” go to “Settings” and toggle it on or off. You can also schedule “Do Not Disturb” by opening “Notifications” tap “Do Not Disturb” and tap “On” to enable to the feature. You can then choose your times and also “Allow Calls from Favorites” if you would like. In addition you can turn on “Repeated Calls”. If you do this if someone calls you more than once. This is in case you do not want to miss an emergency.

“E-Mail Signatures” - This feature is very overdue and I am excited about it. Now you can assign signatures to different email accounts. What took so long for this one I will never know? But here it is and here is how to do it.

To set them up go to “Settings” than “Mail, Contacts, Calendars”. At the bottom tap “Signature” then select “Per Account”. Now you can create a unique email signature for each account! After this the unique signature will appear at the bottom of your new email message.

“Declining Calls” - If you are just too busy to talk there are 2 new ways to decline calls. When there is an incoming call you will see a new a new icon next to the slider. Drag it up and you will see and you will see the option to "Reply with Message” or you can set a time for the phone to remind you when to call that person back. If you choose to “Reply with Message” the person will be sent to voice mail and you can choose from 3 pre-recorded system messages or choose “Custom”. You can add or remove “canned responses” go to “Settings”, “Phone” and “Reply with Message”.

“Improved Privacy” - One of the best enhances with iOS6 is improved privacy integration. This means that you will have more control over which apps can access your personal or social networking information. To check this out go to “Settings”, “Privacy”. Taping any of the “categories” will enable or disable access for any given app. By clicking on these “categories” will display any app that is allowed to access that category. You can toggle access easily here by simply turning access on or off.

My exploration of iOS6 continues so be sure to stay tuned for more updates with the new features available for your iPhone. If you have not upgraded be sure to do so. There is an earlier article describing how to install the update. Other than the wireless connectivity issue I have not seen any other flaws with the upgrade.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Word Tip: Using the Many Paste Features

One of the most common things computer user’s do is cut, copy and paste stuff. When you’re cutting or copying from one place in a document to another, there’s not much to the story; when you’re cutting or copying text from a website perhaps, to a Word document on the other hand, things get a bit stickier, because sometimes you do want the copied text to look as it did on the website, and sometimes, you just want it to fit in seamlessly with what you’re already writing.

Microsoft has not been blind to this and did give us some options for cutting, copying and pasting in Word 2007 with the Paste button on the main ribbon. Recognizing that what they’d done so far wasn’t enough, Microsoft went a step further with Word 2010 by giving users a much better preview of what they’ll get when choosing a particular option.

Word 2010’s new Paste feature can be accessed two different ways; the first is by clicking the right mouse button in the spot where you want to paste something.

Note: You’ll only get all the Paste options shown if you have previously highlighted and copied some text from another source that has non-standard text in it.

The other way is by clicking on the Paste icon on the main ribbon:

Note: In order to get all of the icons to show up in the drop down menu, you first have to copy some non-standard text from another source.

Note the Set Default Paste option that has been added to the bottom of the drop down menu:

Clicking on it brings up a window for setting the defaults for a myriad of Word options:

We only need to look at the defaults for Cut, copy and paste:

Setting defaults for when you paste something, is actually a bigger deal than it might seem. Say for example you have grown used to using Ctrl-C and Ctrl-V for copying and pasting stuff from websites into your Word documents; normally the default is to paste what has been copied in its natural state, i.e. with all the web formatting in place.

If you change the default for Pasting between documents to Keep Text Only, you can save yourself the extra step of having to strip out the formatting manually.

At any rate, once you’ve got your defaults set the way you want, using the Paste feature works the same regardless of which way you access it. To use it, first copy some formatted text and/or graphics from a web site:

Next, open or resume working on a document in Word, then pick a spot in your document to paste the stuff you copied by clicking in the document; then, click the Paste icon. You should notice right away that things look different; instead of word choices, there are now icons.

To see how these icons work, slide your mouse slowly over the different options. Moving from left to right the icons represent: Keep Source Formatting, Merge Formatting, and Keep Text Only. You should be able to see what the pasted material will look like in your document as you move your cursor over the three icons.

Keep Source Formatting:

Merge Formatting:

And finally, Keep Text Only:

To actually paste in the copied material, click on the one you want and the copied material will be pasted into your document in the format you chose (in this case, Keep Source Formatting).

The new icon based Paste tool with preview should make cutting, copying and pasting a much easier task for anyone that does a lot of moving text around from different applications into Word.

Pennsylvania County News - My Article

I was honored to have been asked to contribute an article to the September/October 2012 issue of "Pennsylvania County News" magazine. This issue has just hit the newstands! But no worries, you can read it right here. In the article I discuss today's "Technology's Challanges in Local Government & The Social Network".

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Many of you have forwarded some great opportunities, ideas, etc. over the last few weeks. Below is a list of resources, field trip ideas, suggestions, etc. Hope you find it helpful!

Black Rock Christian Retreat is a great Christian retreat center. They often host homeschool activities and outdoor educational events. More information can be found on their website (or see Barb!):

Here is a link with a video explanation of the memory box Rita shared with us during our opening ceremony last week:

Here is a link to a great missions project that encourages your kids to consider areas of the world where many have not heard the Gospel. It is a 6 week learning and giving adventure that you and your kids will enjoy! Visit this website for more information:
Great Wolfe Lodge is an amazing indoor waterpark. They have several homeschool weeks with great rates in the next few months. Check out their website at:

Friday, September 29th is National Museum Day. Many local museums have free admission. Visit this site for more information:

Finally, here is some helpful information about CC Connected:

Updated Information About CC Connected
Webinar Dates
Please note: the webinar dates in the September Director Connector for Challenge A and B were incorrect. We apologize; please note correct dates and times:

Challenge A:
September 28, 5:00 PM EST                                 
Challenge B:

Challenge I:
September 27, 6:00 PM EST                                   


October 4, 6:30 PM EST

Dear April,

We're excited about the new changes and updates that are occurring in CC Connected! Please take a moment to review the information concerning changes in all tiers and note the times of webinar training for program levels.

We're particularly excited to see the Challenge tier opening NEXT WEEK (October 1) with resources available for Latin study and comprehension.

If you have questions or problems after the webinars, please submit them via e-mail to


Classical Conversations, Inc.
Foundations Tier
The Foundations tier of the CC Connected community offers four important areas to assist families and tutors. New for 2012-2013 is the Foundations Classical Learning Center, which contains short training videos for families and other optional videos, such as the new hand motions developed for Classical Acts & Facts History Card timeline. Returning features include the Dialectic Discussion Forum, which allows families to post their questions to one another, and the At Home Sharing Center, where families can upload or download useful documents for use at home. While some of these documents have been created by Classical Conversations, many have been created by talented families and tutors across the United States. Please use them at home in a way that complements your home school and accomplishes your family goals. In other words, use them to bless your family--not stress them.

Now online!  The Cycle 1 tutorial has been updated for 2012-2013 and is online for your family in theMemory Work Tutorial area of CC Connected. This tutorial matches the updated memory work in the Foundations Guide, 4th edition.

Please join the Foundations Program Manager for a walk through the CC Connected Foundations tier:
Foundations: October 3, 2:00 PM EST 

Essentials Tier
The Essentials tier offers three areas to assist families with the study of English grammar, writing, and arithmetic. The Essentials Classical Learning Center contains video tutorials of grammar tasks, a video introduction to the Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) program, and arithmetic resources. The At Home Sharing Center allows tutors and parents to post helpful documents from their Essentials classes and home schools that can then be used at home by other subscribers. The Dialectic Discussion Forums provide a private discussion with Essentials tutors and families across the country.

Please join the Essentials Program Manager for a walk through the CC Connected Essentials tier:
Essentials: October 4, 6:30 PM EST 

Challenge Tier, Coming October 1, 2012!
The Challenge tier offers three areas to assist families with their Challenge program studies.
There is a wide variety of tutorials available at the Classical Learning CenterTo follow up the Latin studies from this summer's 3-Day Parent Practicums, parents can start with videos created by Courtney Sanford that help them learn Henle Latin with their Challenge students. Next, parents can learn about the parts of speech and the big picture of the Latin language by watching Denise Moore'sLatin Tour videos. Finally, many of our talented directors and program managers have created short instructional videos that follow the scope and sequence of Henle Latin I so parents can dive into the parts of speech in greater detail.

Also available at the Classical Learning Centerthe CiRCE Institute (one of our valued partners) has allowed us to offer the first two lessons of The Lost Tools of Writing to Challenge tier subscribers. This                                  classical rhetoric program helps students develop strong writing and thinking skills that inform all of their learning.

The At Home Sharing Center allows tutors and parents to post helpful documents from their Challenge classes and home schools, which can then be used at home by other subscribers. In the Dialectic Discussion Forums, families can ask questions and engage in discussions with other Challenge families across the United States.

Please join your Challenge Program Manager for a walk through the CC Connected Challenge tier.
Challenge A: September 28, 5:00 PM EST    
Challenge B: September 26, 8:00 PM EST  
Challenge I: September 27, 6:00 PM EST

Join Our Mailing List!

Facebook Launch on October 1, 2012

The Borough of West Chester launches its official Facebook Page on October 1, 2012. Stop by our new Facebook home on Monday, October 1 at On our Facebook page we hope to promote our wonderful historic community and provide citizens and visitors a place in which they can communicate with their local government and each other. Be sure to “Like Us” when you visit!

Don't try to visit it before then. You will only be dissapointed as it is not "live" yet.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Apple's Lightening Strikes Again

Everyone here knows about my thoughts regarding Apple's iPhone5 and the new "lightening cable" it sports. In addition to the limited supply of available cables some users are now reportably experiencing troubles getting the USB end of the cables to unplug from their computers and other devices. Now I myself have not experienced this but I only used mine for about 3 days before boxing it and going back to the 4S.

CNET reports that several people describe problems getting the cables out of the USB ports on their computers, with some going so far as to break out pliers and even take their machines into one of Apple's retail stores to get the cable unplugged.

While USB is a standard spec, manufacturers can have design variations. I have seen this myself from time to time on USB devices.

AppleCare support reportably stated that "they were aware of the problem" and providing replacement cables to those with any issues. It's unclear whether those cables differ from the ones available at launch.

As I reported in an earlier post "lightning" is Apple's new plug technology, which replaces the 30-pin adapters that date back to early iPods. Its key benefit is the smaller iPhone connector, which is 80 percent smaller than the previous connector. Users can also plug it in with either side up. I have experienced this and it really is a nice advantage. No more trying to figure what is up and what is down. Despite these benefits, the new technology will present a costly change for people who have multiple cables just like me that they use in their car, home and at work. Apple includes one out of the box with its latest iPhone but additional cables are probably weeks out from being available.

In addition reports are being made that Apple has placed a "chip" in this cable which will either greatly reduce or remove the ability for outside manufactures to provide less expensive cables. I am not really happy about this and I am keeping hope alive that this report is untrue.

West Chester Facebook Launch

The Borough of West Chester's official Facebook launch is in less then 6 days. Standby for more exciting news!

Regarding the USACE Ruling

(Scroll down to Page 25 ~ Page 28 on the Document)

Joe Pool Lake Dam 

Appeals Court Reverses Katrina Decision

(Reuters) - (September 25, 2012) A U.S. appeals court has reversed itself (yesterday September 24, 2012) and found that the Army Corps of Engineers cannot be held liable in property owners' lawsuits over flood damage during Hurricane Katrina.

More than 400 property owners had filed lawsuits following the August 2005 hurricane, many targeting the Corps of Engineers.


The plaintiffs had alleged the Corps of Engineers delayed armoring the Mississippi River-Gulf Outlet shipping channel against flood damage due to incorrect scientific decisions rather than public policy considerations.

In an unusual move, a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans on Monday withdrew its earlier ruling in March that had been in the plaintiffs' favor. 

Monday's ruling came after the federal government sought review of the panel's earlier decision by the full appeals court.

Judge Jerry Smith, writing for the court, said the Corps of Engineers is immune from being held liable for property damage under the so-called "discretionary function exception" to the Federal Tort Claims Act, which governs litigation against the U.S. government. 

The exception bars lawsuits against the government for conduct arising from statutes and regulations that don't require an agency's action but involve its discretion. [emphasis added.]

A Little Background and More:  In 1996 the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) decided, "No leasing of federal land for drilling activities within a 3,000 foot buffer zone of Joe Pool Lake Dam."  NSO (No Surface Occupancy) and ND (No Drilling) (See Page 25 in the above document.)   

So, in 2010, Chesapeake Energy drilled and fracked within 850 FT. of the Joe Pool Lake Dam and Spillway! OOPS.  USACE later tells our community, "We didn't know Chesapeake planned to do this."  Hmmmm...Is this 1) USACE using their discretion to NOT KNOW; 2) USACE not knowing their own regulations;  and/or 3) Chesapeake Energy using the City of Grand Prairie, TX, a church with an ever-changing name, homeowners who have no idea what's going on, AND the United States Army Corps of Engineers ~ Was/Is this Chesapeake using all these parties to make it appear well and good to do as they Da** well please??

That Jury is clearly still out (far out) on this one.  Meanwhile, let's refresh our memories and re-read our story from September 25, 2011 (exactly one year ago today, ironically ) about all the myriad possibilities. Amen.



Monday, September 24, 2012

iPhone 5 in Storage

Why would anyone be lucky enough to have an iPhone 5 delivered on the first day available and then only switch back to the iPhone 4S? Here is why.

Apple blundered if you as me. Now don't get me wrong. I loved the iPhone5 and I look forward to using it in the near future. However in my long IT career I have never seen this. A smartphone released with no ability to purchase powering accessories. That's right. With the iPhone 5 you cannot presently purchase lightening cables (the new cable), car kits or even external power supplies. You get the one cable in the box and you are expected to carry that with you at all times if you want to charge your phone through the day.

I am not afraid to say this. Believe it or not. I am a very busy person and normally the battery on my smartphone is under 50% by lunch time. I need the ability to charge my phone at several places every day. One "lightening cable" is simply not enough. To make matters worse there is not a release date for these power accessories or cables until "sometime in October".

With all this in mind, my very awesome iPhone 5 with 4G (LT) service, a bigger screen, faster processor and superior camera went back into it's box until Apple decides to make available power and cabling accessories.

If you need powering options wait a bit until these accessories are available before upgrading to the new iPhone. Otherwise you may be sitting at home writing a silly somewhat angry blog article as opposed to watching the Monday Night Football pre-game show!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Gov. Perry selling Arlington, TX to Chinese Investors?

Yee Haw.


Was this really a news story? Arlington is referred to as a "mature" city!! 

Link to the Story and Video.

Office 2013 - Pricing from the Cloud

Microsoft is doing their part to expand the future of computer services in the cloud. With Office 2013 consumers as well as corporate users are being enticed in a very real way to move to the cloud with subscription services. The days of running out to Best Buy or Staples and purchasing your software on media discs are almost at an end.

Although the actual release date of Office 2013 has yet to be released it is assumed it will be available by the end of 2013. Subscription prices are set to be under $9.00 per month. What do you get for that? Actually I am impressed with what Microsoft is offering.

For under $9 per month the consumer may install Office 2013 on up to 5 individual computers including Macs. In addition the primary account holder will get up to 27 gigabytes of space on SkyDrive. Microsoft is also promising regular updates and improvements for subscribers.

Can you still purchase Office on a disc? The licensing for the retail editions has been made much more restrictive then it's cloud service version. Each copy is good on only one machine, and there are no volume discounts or family packs. This could make Office a much more expensive purchase when multiple family members need it. It might just be Microsoft’s way of herding everyone toward the subscription versions. The "Home" version is set at $219 while the "Professional" version is set at $399. Obviously at under $99/year the cloud service is actually more affordable and flexible when you consider all of the other advantages offered.

Another interesting change in the launch of Microsoft Office's own "app store" which will offer more add-on applications for Office products then we have ever seen before.

At the borough we have been subscribed to "Office 365" for over an year now and I believe it has been everything Microsoft indicated it would be. There is surely more detailed information coming from Microsoft soon. Stay tuned and prepare to jump on Microsoft's cloud with Office 13!

Friday, September 21, 2012

A big "thank you!" to so many who help each week with set up, clean up and helping behind the scenes. I'm so thankful for the ways you serve our community - playing jumprope with the kids during free time, mopping up the puddle on the floor by the water fountain, helping with chairs and tables, keeping little ones safe and happy in the nursery, making coffee, the list goes on! Thank you!

Please pray for our campus in your homes this week. Specifically, pray for a safe delivery for Tatyana and comfort for the Schild family. Please also remember the Thompson family this week - how wonderful to have them in our community!

Keep on learning that grammar! Drill, drill, drill!

Microsoft Releases Out-Of-Band IE Zero-Day Patch

As expected, Microsoft today released a cumulative update for Internet Explorer addressing the zero-day vulnerability in the browser being actively exploited in the wild. Security Update MS 12-063 patches not only the critical remote-execution zero-day, but four other vulnerabilities privately disclosed to Microsoft that are not being exploited.

The most critical vulnerability is the execCommand Use After Free flaw in IE versions 6-9. The vulnerability occurs because of a faulty way in which IE access objects in memory that have not been deleted or properly allocated. Successful exploits will give the attacker the same privileges as the user.

Exploits were discovered this week by a pair of research teams. Eric Romang, a Metasploit contributor, found the first last weekend while monitoring servers infected by a pair of recent Java zero-day exploits. Romang found a pair of HTML pages, an executable and a Flash movie file that triggers the executable when a user lands on one of the malicious HTML pages. The first exploit dropped the PoisonIvy remote access Trojan.

A few days later, researcher Jamie Blasco at AlienVault found three more exploits, including one that dropped the PlugX RAT. All of these exploits are tied to Nitro, a hacker group in China. The three latest exploits all target defense contractors in either the United States or India. Blasco had evidence within his research that these three exploits were built before the release of the Metasploit module and was able to tie them to Nitro because he found files named after a video game character from Warlock: Master of the Arcane; other files tied to previously tied to Nitro were similarly named.

Microsoft responded in stages throughout the week, first recommending several workarounds, before making a FixIt solution available that would temporarily mitigate the vulnerability until today’s patch was available. Microsoft announced it would release today’s patch late Wednesday night.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

A Special Report from a Special Guest

iPhone Update Horror
“My iPhone Thinks I Don’t Have Friends”
by Staci King

As you are all well aware, yesterday was the much awaited iPhone iOS6 upgrade. And I must forewarn all of you…I have limited technological abilities, so I’m hoping that this is a quick and simple little upgrade – requiring little or no input from me. So, after having been advised repeatedly during the day by our resident IT Genius to update my phone, I eagerly began the update process…even though I was not happy that it could take an hour or more – essentially cutting me off from the world!

Lucky for me, the update went smoothly, took only 45 minutes and was relatively painless for me, unlike my husband – his update took almost 3 hours! Anxious to see what new features were added to my phone during the upgrade, I went through the finishing process, setting up iCloud and all that good stuff and everything was great. Until this morning…I went into my contacts to get a phone number….and that’s when it happened…my iPhone update horror…there were no contacts in my list!!! Not a single one…Just my lonely phone number at the top of the page. Apparently, I no longer had any friends according to my much beloved iPhone.

And then the overwhelming feeling of panic begins to set in…my heart started racing, the language being uttered by me would have made a sailor blush, I felt faint and the prospect of rebuilding my list of contacts made a tear come to my eye…because out of the hundred or so phone numbers and email addresses stored in my phone , I think I only know 3 of them by heart!!!

Ok, take a deep breath, this has got to be fixable, right? I mean isn’t this one of the great reasons behind “The Cloud” that we have all been hearing for the last year or so? “The Cloud” is supposed to be the almighty backup server! And with a little help (okay, a lot of help) from a little search engine called “Google” I discovered the answer to my prayers! My contacts COULD be recovered – so long as I hadn’t made a backup since they were lost…and this is how it’s done:

Go to “Settings”
- Choose “iCloud”
- Where it says “Contacts” it should be at this moment switched to the “ON” position.
- Swipe the switch to show “OFF”
- It will ask you “Keep on iPhone” – Choose this option
- Now Swipe the switch back to “ON”
- It will ask you if you want to “Merge Contacts” – Choose this option
- And that’s it! It is really that easy!!!

At this magical point in time my contacts are now restored to my phone…And the shaking has stopped, the cursing has subsided and the world is good again…I have friends!! 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

26 Killed When Pipeline Leaked and Then Exploded

Reynosa, Mexico 

September 18, 2012

CIUDAD VICTORIA, Mexico (AP) — A big fire erupted at a natural gas pipeline distribution center near Mexico's border with the United States on Tuesday, killing 26 maintenance workers and forcing evacuations of people in nearby ranches and homes.

Mexico's state-owned oil company, Petroleos Mexicanos (also known as Pemex) initially reported 10 deaths at the facility near the city of Reynosa, across from McAllen, Texas.

Later, the death toll was raised to 26, including a man who was run over when he rushed onto a highway running away from the facility.

Pemex said at a news conference Tuesday night that the fire was extinguished in 90 minutes and the pipeline was shut off. The pipeline carries natural gas from wells in the Burgos basin.

The company's director-general, Juan Jose Suarez, said four of those killed were Pemex employees and the rest were employed by contractors. He told reporters in Reynosa that 46 other workers were injured, including two hospitalized in serious condition.

Suarez said they haven't found any evidence showing it was an attack.

Company executives said there was a gas leak, followed by an explosion, but the precise cause had not been determined.

"Why there was such leak is something that must be investigated," said Carlos Morales Gil, Pemex's director of exploration and production.

Civil protection officials evacuated ranches and homes within three miles (five kilometers) of the gas facility, which is about 12 miles (19 kilometers) southwest of Reynosa.

Authorities didn't say how many people were evacuated, but the area is sparsely populated, Tamaulipas state's civil protection director Pedro Benavides told a Televisa station.[emphasis added.]

Click Here for Link to Story.

iOS6 Alert

This evening I upgraded 2 iPads and a iPhone4S to iOS6. All went well until after the updates. Afterward I could not get any of the devices to connect to my wonderful wireless network. After troubleshooting this I was able to finally fix the issue by completing the following tasks.

1. Rebooting my Verizon Fios router.

2. "Forgetting the Network" on my apple devices.

3. Connect to the wireless network again.

This may not happen to you after upgrading to iOS6 but if it does give this a try.

My iOS6 Update

As I predicted at about 1pm I was able to download the new Iphone iOS this afternoon. After selecting "Settings", "General" and finally "Software Update" I was notified that iOS6 was indeed available.

Crossing my fingers I then selected "Download and Install".

I was glad to see that you are then reminded to plug your phone into a power source for the install, which I of course did.

The update process took about 60 minutes. Your best bet during this upgrade is just to walk away and leave your iPhone in peace so it can get the job done. Once the update has been completed you will be prompted for some information. Simply select the defaults and move forward. Afterward you will be back at your main screen. You will see an additional icon on the screen, "Passbook". I have no experience with this new app but I will explore it soon. You will also notice that the iTunes store has been given a facelift.

I am sure there will be plenty of app updates in the next several weeks as app developers hustle to catch up with iOS6. Make sure you update your iPhone and iPad today.... and good luck.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Apple's iOS6 Arrives

Tomorrow Apple releases the updated operating system iOS6 for the iPhone and iPad. This operating system is the backbone of the upcoming Iphone5 but is also available for the previous iPhone models and iPads starting tomorrow.

Here are some of the reported enhancements as I understand it at this time.

A New YouTube- If you enjoy YouTube be aware that YouTube is now longer a native part of the OS. This means you will need to download the YouTube app from the app store. Ironically from what I understand the new YouTube app is a big improvement from the native version.

Apple's New Maps- Getting around with your iPhone will be an experience by itself now, with spoken directions and turn-by-turn navigation, real-time crowdsourced traffic updates, Quick routes and re-routing options, Yelp-powered details on nearby businesses and more. One of the highlights of this feature would be Flyover, a 3D rendition of buildings and major landmarks for a close-up interactive 3D view of cities around the world.

A Smarter Siri- Siri is now savvy in sports stats, restaurant reviews and rotten tomatoes (imdb movie ratings). You can make reservations with Siri through the OpenTable app, and check out movie schedules and ratings. Have a lot of apps to sift through, look up and launch? Launch it the new way by asking Siri to launch the app for you. With the iOS6, you can even dictate your posts for release on Facebook and Twitter.

An Integrated Facebook- It’s easier than ever to share on Facebook with the new iOS6. Share photos and locations straight from your device and get your updates about what’s happening on Facebook in your contact and Calendar. Profile information will be integrated into Calendar so you won’t get to miss a thing, especially since you now get notifications for both Facebook and Twitter updates from the notification center.

Passbook App- Tickets, boarding passes, movie tickets and store cards are things of the pass. Scan in your details to get on that plane, into that cinema or that concert and keep constant tabs on your store card balance all from your iOS devices.

Improved FaceTime- Phone numbers and Apple IDs are unified in iOS 6 and FaceTime is now cellular, so if someone calls you via your phone number on FaceTime, you can answer on your iOS device or on your Mac. Messages sent to your iOS device also updates in real-time to your iPad and Mac.

Enhanced Phone App - Yes It Appears Apple Even Worked on on the Phone Itself- Never miss a call again. Reply to missed or declined calls with a canned message, or add a reminder to yourself to call back at a better time. There is also a ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode that can be scheduled to let you regain some of your sleep time.

How To Get iOS6?

You can upgrade your devices "over the air" which means you do not need to plug your device into your PC. However be sure to back up your device in Itunes beforehand and make sure your battery is fully charged.

To get it go to "Settings", "General" and choose "Software Update". The update should be available about mid-day (EST) on Wednesday, September 19, 2012. Good Luck.

Office 2013 Update

Just by reading some of my recent posts you know it's no secret that Microsoft is prepping up for its October event where it will be announcing its latest operating system, Windows 8. The OS will also be accompanied by the release of Microsoft's first Windows RT-based tablet, Surface.

The latest announcement from Microsoft is that Office 13 will be ready to ship to Windows RT (tablet) users by November. A blogpost form the Office Team mentions that Windows RT will contain a preview , that is beta versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote for Office 2013. I have been using this for a few months now and so far I really like what I have seen.

The post also states that updates to the final version will roll out via Windows Update in early November, which will continue through January.

A release date for the PC version of Office has not et been announced, although an early 2013 is a safe bet.

The Office Team explained that there will be some feature differences in between the RT (table) and PC versions. I am hoping for the best here as having differences between the two will surely confuse some users. For example Microsoft has already stated that Office on Windows RT (tablets) will not include macro support or any additions that rely on ActiveX controls, such as embedded Flash.

You can also say goodbye to old PowerPoint files since they won't work at all. This could be a hurdle but I am sure there will be some sort of "workaround". PowerPoint won't support recording narrations. Excel will also lose some of its data handling capabilities. Microsoft also said that certain email features will not be supported as Windows RT (tablet) does not have support for an Office RT (tablet) version of Outlook.

Microsoft says its Office 2013 RT (tablet) edition has been designed for touch support and longer battery life. "Office applications are enabled for "touch mode" by default, so the touch experience is better out of the box," the blog said.

All of this aside I must say I am really excited to finally have Microsoft Office available on a tablet device. For those of us on the go access to these documents will make working on the road easier then ever.

Microsoft will publish a specific update schedule on its blog on October 26.

Microsoft Warns of a New IE Security Threat

Microsoft has urged Windows users to install a free security software to protect their PCs from a newly discovered vulnerability in its Internet Explorer browser.

Microsoft said it will advise customers on its Web site to install the software as an interim measure, buying some time for it to fix the bug and release a new, more secure version of Internet Explorer, Reuters reported on Monday.

The free security tool, called the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET), will prevent hackers from gaining access to Windows-based systems and is currently available on Microsoft Web site.

This comes after security researcher Eric Romang discovered a new zero-day vulnerability in Internet Explorer, which he claimed woud affect fully patched versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer 7, 8 and 9.

Please be aware. This is for Internet Explorer, not Chrome, Firefox or Safari. However even if you do not use Internet Explorer regularly you should take the time to install this free security software. I ran the application this morning and it took less then 3 minutes and no re-boot was required.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

"Hushed" by Chesapeake

Get Microsoft Silverlight

(Be sure to play this video on your PC or MAC. Embedded videos using the Silverlight Microsoft application won't play on iPhone or other smartphones or iPads ~ iOS devices. We're very sorry, but there are clearly limitations to the Silverlight software in 2012.)

Follow these easy steps to download the Silverlight application to your MAC: Click here for how to stream a meeting on my MAC. And here's another link to some additional info if you have trouble viewing the video: Additional Info.

Click here for the link to the June 5, 2012 Arlington, TX City Council Meeting. Then scroll over to 57:08 (57 Minutes, 08 Seconds) for the Rocking Horse Drilling Site Agenda Item Discussion from the citizen of South East Arlington, TX. She talks about "being hushed," at the May 31, 2012 Community Meeting conducted by Chesapeake, the likely Statewide Rule 37 Spacing Exception for mineral owners on this leasehold AND unpaid royalties for Chesapeake's Fulson site in her own neighborhood.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Please continue to pray for our campus this week! Specifically let's remember the Reislers and pray that our students would enjoy a safe and healthy start to the school year.

I'm sure we have all been enjoying this wonderful weather! It's been great to take special notice of the different types of plants and animals in our world especially since we've been observing these things during our CC science times these past two weeks.

Psalm 24:1,2: "The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters."

One of my favorite quotes from author Brent Earles is as follows:
"The stars are God's fingerprints. The sun is a mere splash of his radiance. The moon is to remind us that he doesn't sleep at night. The vastness of space proclaims the infinity of his wisdom, while the sand pebble indicates his thoroughness with the puniest of details. The lion hints at his fearlessness, the bear at his power, the hawk at his keen insight. And yet, those possess only a tidbit of God's omnipotence and omnipresence. Every tree points toward heaven; every bird has a song to sing; even every moment of wind goes in some specific direction. There is nothing chaotic about our beautifully designed world. All creation has a message to tell. It says, 'Listen, there is a God. There is a God!'"

Enjoy God's creation this week!

Friday, September 14, 2012


With the release of Apple's Iphone 5 I foundly remember the once dominate Blackberry.

Research in Motion (RIM) at one point was the leader in the smartphone world. From the mid 2000's through 2010 Blackberry phones were seen as upscale and necessary devices. This was especially true for the professional on the move. However I believe it was this tight relationship with that "professional" that began to stagnate inovation with the Blackberry itself. You could see this with their limited development of apps (applications).

What RIM lost sight of in my opnion was that most people expect their smartphone to be "all things for all occasions". This simply means that the smartphone today needs to keep you connected to work with the ability to easily access files as well as keeping you in constant contact with your co-workers and clients. Now this is where RIM dropped the ball and continues to fumble. Most users of smartphones only carry one, both for work and personal use. The world we live in today is connected and fast. Because of this smartphone users also expect access to services like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube as well as countless other consumer services. Consumers expect all of these services to be available at the same time, on the same device. I am not sure that RIM every truly understood the importance of this.

Today as Apple and Android battle it out for dominace in mobile technology (smartphones and tablets) RIM as been forced to the sideline. I believe RIM only recently realized that they were in serious trouble. In an effort to remain relevent RIM released their own tablet, "The Blackberry Playbook" in 2010. This device failed to make a dent in IPAD or even Android tablet sales. Once again RIM missed the boat on current technology trends. The "Blackberry Playbook" had limited apps available and proved basicly to be a larger version of the Blackberry smartphone.

The largest customer base for RIM at this time is state and federal government. Government is usually taking up the rear in technology trends but even this last customer base is beginning to erode. As Apple and Android continue to challenge each other with innovating new mobile technologies this last customer base will continue to drindle. When that happens, probably within the next year, RIM will probably finally rest in peace.

Next Technology Training Date Set

Our next technology training date has been scheduled for Thursday, October 25, 2012. As always there will be 2 sessions (10AM or 1PM). Plese send me any training ideas or topics you would like covered.

Outlook Tip - Print Only One Page of an Outlook Message

Other Office apps let you print the current page (or one or more numbered pages) directly from the Print menu in Backstage view by clicking the down arrow next to the Print All Pages button to see the page-range options. Outlook doesn't offer those options on its Print menu; instead, you must click the tiny Print Options button on the Print menu, then select a Page Range option.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

"Tremors" (*Updated*)

About the Chesapeake Rocking Horse Drilling Site
Arlington, Texas ~ June 5, 2012
Get Microsoft Silverlight
(Be sure to play this video on your PC or MAC. Embedded videos using the Silverlight Microsoft application won't play on iPhone or other smartphones, iPads ~ iOS devices. We're very sorry for this inconvenience.)
Click here for the link to the June 5, 2012 City Council Meeting. Then scroll over to 53:27 (53 Minutes, 27 Seconds) for the Rocking Horse Drilling Site Agenda Item Discussion from the community leader about the "tremors."
(*Updated*) See the comments, please.

IGoogle Going Away

The internet is a very big digital universe. Finding a start page that works for us can be very difficult. For the past couple of years I have used iGoogle. This start page offers everything you could want as a starting point on the internet. Tabs where you can separate your interests, great widgets, awesome customization options and a great way to organize your internet links. This start page also looks great on mobile devices. Anyway all good things really do end. This is proven once again because apparently iGoogle is going away on November 1, 2013. I know this because it is being announced on the webpage. See below image.

There are not really that many good options for internet start pages, which has always surprised me. Sure there is Yahoo and MSN. However these are "out of the box" designed and I was never satisfied with the limited ability to design or personalize these particular start pages.

The good news here is Google has given us plenty of warning. I will be researching start pages over the next month or so and looking for good options. Watch for my report.

What start page do you use? Let me know maybe you can come to my rescue!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

CC Families!
If you would like to see what CC Connected is like, you can be part of a free trial through September 16th.

User name is: guest1 Password is: guest1.

Latin songs, the timeline video, online tutorials and more are offered through CC Connected. It's a great resource!

Word Tip - Customize the Ribbon

Microsoft Office finally lets you rearrange the Ribbon the way you want by clicking the File tab to go to Backstage, selecting Options, and then Customize Ribbon.

This is the Ribbon in all Microsoft Office Products.

Once "backstage", in the right-hand column, you can create a new tab or a new group on an existing tab, remove or rearrange items already on the Ribbon by selecting them in the right-hand column, or select items that you want to add from the list on the left. Long-term Office users may want to use the "Commands not on the ribbon," function because you can now add a command that you used in older versions of Word that nixed from the Ribbon due to lack of demand.

Note: A button on the lower right lets you export your customizations to other Office setups.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Friday, September 7, 2012

Thanks for a great week #1! I hope you and your children enjoyed our day together and will look forward to returning next week. Thanks parents, for your involvement in the classrooms and for those who helped in the AM and PM child care.

As much as you are able, please spend a few minutes reviewing week one memory work with your children each day. We are trying to drill in this information so they are prepared for a lifetime of learning. That takes a lot of drilling! It's wonderful that our children have peers who are encouraging and challenging them as they learn this information together. The group dynamic makes all the difference and really helps to stimulate the learning environment. We'll also look forward to seeing healthy friendships and relationships grow for all as we spend time together. Please pray for one another this week and especially the Boyer family and all of our extended family members.

As we read from Exodus 20 this week in our opening ceremony, I am praising God that as He brought the Israelites out of the house of bondage, so He has made a way for us to be free from the bondage of sin! What a Savior!

Star Trek Gets Some Google Love

Star Trek has now been around for 46+ years! It almost as old as me. Star Trek is more popular now then it was back when it originally aired. Through 5 TV series, 11 movies and even an animated series Trek really will never die. If you love Star Trek or even if you don't check out Google's "Star Trek Doodle" which will apparently be live at through tomorrow evening. You can click around and even re-live one of Kirk's greatest battles.

I very special thank-you to dedicated readers Gerry DiNunzio and Lisa Glass for taking the time to "red alert" me on this one. I was so busy today I probably would have missed out on this very special Star Trek adventure.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Tip of the Day - Word 2010

Open Recently-used Files With Two Keystrokes

In older versions of Office, the File menu always displayed your recently-used documents, which you could open by typing Alt-F1, then the number of the document on the list (1 for the most recent, 2 for next most recent, etc.). This feature isn’t turned on by default in Office 2010, but you can activate it by entering the Backstage view, selecting Recent, and adding a checkbox next to "Quickly access this number of recent documents." Change the number to whatever number of documents you want to see on the list. In the Recent Documents list, you can "pin" a document to the list so that it will always appear, even if you haven't opened it recently. A nifty new feature lets you "pin" entire folders to the list of Recent Places in the right-hand column on the menu.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Khan Academy

While watching 60 Minutes on Sunday evening, September 2, 2012 I was introduced to “Khan Academy”. I know what you are thinking and you are wrong. This is not the same Khan who terrorized Captain Kirk and crew in Star Trek II. While watching this I was introduced to Salman Khan who in 2006 created this online education resource that grabbed the attention of Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft. As with any great innovation this one was stumbled on by an “out-of-the-box” thinker for a very specific purpose.

Salman Kahn has earned three degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (a BS in mathematics, a BS in electrical engineering and computer science, and an MS in electrical engineering and computer science). In 2004 Khan wanted to help his cousin Nadia (remotely) in mathematics. Kahn decided to do this using Yahoo!’s Doodle notepad. When friends and relatives watched these innovative short tutorials they were amazed by the easy going educational content of Kahn's published videos on YouTube. The popularity grew so quickly that Khan quit his job and concentrated on building “Kahn Academy”, a non-profit education resource available to anyone wanting to learn. “Kahn Academy” has grown so popular and accepted that besides catching the attention of Bill Gates, school districts in California have begun using this great resource in class.

“Kahn Academy” has grown to include topics beyond mathematics, such as “history”, “astronomy” and “economics”. This type of educational web resource could turn education on its head, especially for children and young adults. It is hoped that “Kahn Academy” can begin tackling higher education as well.

If you have children in school I recommend you check it out. Signing up is free and your education or your child’s educational experience can be greatly and positively impacted by this. I really wish this amazing resource was available when my boys were going through school. If you have children in school take a few moments to check "Kahn Academy" out. It could change their lives.

Learn more at the 60 Minutes website.
Check out Kahn Academy today.
Check out Salman Kahn on TedTalks (below).

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Yet Another Rogue AV Application

Yet another fake antivirus/antimalware tool started making people’s lives miserable as August 2012 came to an end. The “Windows 8 Security System” claims to detect infections, and displays alerts to scare users into purchasing protection. The real infection, of course, is the “Windows 8 Security System” itself.

I have been asked to "clean" two computers during the past 2 weeks with this very infection and I can say it is very difficult to remove.

It appears that the evil developers of rogue antivirus software are playing up the connection to Windows 8, which Microsoft plans to release at the end of October. “Windows 8 Security System” is very similar to other fake AV products. All of these fake AV products extremely aggressive and hard to remove. In the case of this new one a victim’s system gets infected with “Windows 8 Security System” after visiting an infected website. Sadly it is easy to fall victim to rogue software like the new “Windows 8 Security System”, which extort money from PC owners to “fix” their systems. McAfee Labs recommends disabling Java in your browsers and running your antimalware software with real-time protection enabled. You should also be careful with downloading files from torrents or clicking on email and chat links.

“Windows 8 Security System” will display countless fake alerts and messages and will show a scan window on each system boot. It will display lots of detections, though it is obvious these are fake.

All of these rogue malware applications make sure that your system is compromised and that you cannot easily detect and remove the infection.

“Windows 8 Security System” alerts at the taskbar look like this:

What to do?Sometimes restoring your PC to an earlier date works, sometimes it does not. You can also try booting into safe mode (with networking) and running your real AV application. If you do this make sure to choose to scan your entire PC, not just the system files. If this still does not help additional security services like SpyBot may help. Of course if all of this does not work, backing up your personal files and completing a reformat will remove the virus. The point here is that all of these tasks will either cost you a lot of time or money. The best defense is to avoid these malicious applications by avoiding questionable websites, including torrent sites and of course never ever clicking on attachments in email if you did not specially request the file.