Thursday, January 31, 2013

USB Drive - Security Concerns Growing

A merging problem, closing in on critical mass for corporations, businesses and governments is USB Drive security. There have been many reported breeches in network security recently, many of which were caused simply by someone placing an infected USB drive into a networked PC.

The US Department of Homeland Security's Cyber Emergency Response Team has recently released a report shich stated that two American electrical power plants were compromised late last year and in addition identified a number of glaring electronic vulnerabilities.

In the case of the infected power plants malware infected their control systems. The tainted USB drive came into contact with several computers at the power generation facility. Investigators found sophisticated malware on two engineering workstations which were critical to the operation of the control enviornment.

In addition more computers at the power station were infected in the turbine control room. Once again the malware was spread through an infected USB drive inserted into a workstation.

I am not sure what the "control system" and "turbine control" systems actually do, but if I had to guess they are really, really important.

This and other recent stories should remind us to never-ever pick up a USB drive that you "find" and place it into a computer to "see what's on the drive". In fact USB drives should should not be brought into any workplace and inserted into your employer's computers without prior permission.

Of course additional policies and procedures will have to be drafted and enforced by any organization striving to protect the security of their data.

Living with a Windows 8 Phone - For a Month Anyway

I combined all of my articles into one paper the desribes in chronological order my one month experience with a Windows 8 Phone. If you are considering switching to Microsoft's new phone or if you are just interested in learning more check it out here.

Windows 8 Phone - If Wishes Were Horses

I lasted a month with my Windows 8 phone. We had some goodtimes – we had some not so good times. There is an old saying that  goes something like this that describes my feeling about the Windows 8 phone. It goes like this, “Wishing for something doesn’t make it true”. Don’t get me wrong. I really – really want Microsoft to find success with their Windows phone. There are some unique benefits to their phone that cannot be found anywhere else. However the Windows phone is in the baby stages of development and there is still a little work to be done before Microsoft can truly nudge their way into relevance in the smartphone world.  This is not to be unexpected, the head start Apple (2007) and Android (2008) have over Microsoft (2010) is significant.  If you further consider that Microsoft only launched their Windows 8 phone on December 20, 2012 they truly have a lot of ground to catch up.

After using the Windows 8 phone for a month I came to the following conclusions.
It’s all about the Apps

Sadly it’s all about the Apps for many smartphone users. Android and Apple have done an amazing job of enticing companies to develop apps for their smartphones. If you are a business you almost are required today to develop and release an IPhone and Android app. The amount of Apps has exploded since 2007 and 2008. Microsoft has a lot of catch up to do here if they want consumers to move to their eco-system. The good news is I believe Microsoft realizes this and they are working to increase the amount of Apps available as quickly as possible.
I Want My Music

Yes – I know this is not exactly business related. However most users of smart phones have stopped carrying separate portable music players and rely on their smartphone for this. In addition if Microsoft is going to be successful with their Windows phones they cannot rely only on the professional consumer. This is what RIM did and look what has happened to that company. Microsoft has never got the music player right. Microsoft's biggest effort with music players was Zune (2006) which never competed with Apple in any meaningful way. This was simply because Zune is not that good. It was overly complicated. The music player on the Windows 8 phone is not much better. Importing music and tags* is erratic and overly complex. This will need to improve as well for the Windows phone to find mass appeal.
* Tags contain the information in music files such as artist name, song name, album title, album year, album art in additional to other details regarding the song file.

The Windows Advantage
There are some great advantages that Microsoft has over Apple and Android even at this early stage. The first and most important is Microsoft Office integration. With the addition of SkyDrive integration accessing documents is far easier and efficient on the Windows phone then any of its competitors. 

Sharepoint and Lync users will also find the integration of these services seemless, which is not true on Android and IPhones.

Microsoft has demonstrated real innovation with the Windows 8 operating system. Moving away from icons that include several screens to a live tile interface is the first real change in smartphones since 2007. Because of this live tile interface no 2 Windows 8 phones look alike once the user begins customizing their phone. This cannot be said for IPhones and Android phones.
I will stay on top of the continued development of the Windows 8 phone. I hope to find myself using a Windows 8 phone again. I truly believe it has the capability to become a true option not just for the everyday consumer but professional organizations as well.  

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Windows 8 Phone - ?

OK - Big announcement tomorrow regarding my experience with the Windows 8 Phone. Let's just say there is still work to be done. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Oh, Seismicity. Wherefore Art Thou?

3.0 Irving, TX Earthquake January 22, 2013

*Click on the Map to Make it Larger*

Many Gas Well Pad Sites Surrounding DFW Airport showing Multiple Horizontal Wellbores Per Padsite

(Railroad Commission of Texas GIS Maps)

Click Here to See the United States Geological Survey Event Page.

For more facts about it...Click Here.

"In some areas, seismic activity, better known as earthquakes, can occur as a result of oil and gas production. In this article, we review the modern history of human-induced seismic activity, and present the findings of a recent project to monitor injection- and production-related seismicity. Scientists in Russia, in a cooperative project with Schlumberger, are analyzing the seismic energy recorded during these events to extract information about the reservoir, to more fully characterize the state of stress in the field and to optimize the recovery of reserves."

And then there's this: Click Here.


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

*New Policy* for Sierra Club

How to Set Up Multiple Email Signatures in iOS 6

Today I was asked if you can have multiple signatures on your IPhone & IPad. The good news is that yes you can, as long as you have upgraded your Apple device to iOS 6. This upgrade was made available earlier last year, so hopefully you have already completed the upgrade.

Before iOS 6, you were allowed only one common signature that appeared on each email account. Other then deleteing and adding a new email signature for each email message there was really no other way to deal with multiple email accounts.

With the new iOS each of your accounts can have it's own distinct signature. Isn't technology womderful! So, your work email can give all your professional information while you're personal account can have more of a personal signature.

Here's how to set it up:

Go to Settings on your home screen, select Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Scroll way down until you see the Signature option. Tap on it and you'll see the options shows in the image below.

All Accounts will enable one signature to be sent from all your email accounts. Tap Per Account and each of your accounts will pop up, allowing you to create personalized signatures for each of them. (see image below)

Now, when you send an email, iOS 6 will automatically know which account it's coming from and apply the correct signature.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Java Alert Update

Here is another update on last week’s Java security alert. I want to keep this as simple as possible. Oracle’s Java has been and continues to be a security problem. This is probably the result of the very complex code of the application and how it interacts with the internet browser and other applications we run on our computer.

Another element that has probably contributed to this ongoing issue is the popularity of Java with website programmers and that Java itself has grown so complex that the developers of Java (Oracle) are even unsure of their own code and how it is interacting with all of the applications on our computers.  

Oracle continues to try and play catch-up by continually releasing fixes which in turn we need to install. I am not sure where are of this is going to end up but this confusing mess is something that must be dealt with.

Important fact: If Java if used in stand alone programs there is no known security problems. The Java security issues are specifically in how it is interacting in your internet browser.

For now you have 3 options as I see it.

1. Completely uninstall Java from your PC.
2. Update Java and hope for the best.
3. Disable Java from running in your internet browser.
Which do I recommend? I suggest both 2 & 3. You can easily do this by opening the Control Panel and selecting the “Java” application.
1. To update Java select the “Update” tab and choose “Update Now”.  
2. To disable “Java” from running in your internet browser select the hyperlink at the bottom of the first tab. If it is enabled simple uncheck the box, select "apply" and take a deep breath.  (images below)
Select this hyperlink if Java in enabled. Then Uncheck the Enable box & Apply.
I believe that these steps are important and critical. That is because the security issues surrounding Java are not going anywhere anytime soon. In fact there is word of yet another security alert just around the corner. I will stay on top of this story so stay tuned.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Links for timeline song with hand motions for weeks 7-12 and 13-18. Enjoy the review!

2 Week Review of My Windows 8 Phone

OK it’s been about 2 weeks since I gave up my IPhone for a Windows 8 Phone. There have been some tough times during these past 2 weeks and sometimes I actually miss my old IPhone. However that being said I must say I have been adapting to this new smartphone.  The problem in my opnion is that innovation inside of Apple has slowed to a crawl, especially in respect to their smartphone. The IPhone today (IPhone 5) actually in many ways is the same phone as the original (IPhone 3G). Sure the processors have improved, 4G is now available and SIRI is available when you are lonely. Other than this the innovation within Apple has been incredibly slow in respect to the development on the IPhone product. 5 years have passed (2007) between the first 3G model and the current IPhone 5 (2013) model. That's a really long time in the tech world.

Anyway enough of the past and on to my experience with the new Windows 8 Phone. Unlike the IPhone there are various manufactures developing and building Windows phones. Each wireless provider offers different models. I have a Nokia Lumia 822. In previous posts I have written about my disappointment with the Windows Music player and App Store.  Moving on from these issues my experience gets much better.

Here are some of the highlights.

Before I move on to some specifics let me say that the voice quality on the Nokia Lumia 822 is loud and clear. Music playback is also very good. The form factor although a little heaver & thicker than the IPhone 5 is actually very nice. I have found that the battery (which is removable) will easily last 24 hours with normal usage.
The Lock Screenis very customizable. Services such as the Weather Channel, ESPN & Facebook can be used as live wallpaper. Updates can be displayed on the lock screen as well. 

Home Screen Displaying Weather

Microsoft Officeintegration is really where the Windows 8 Phone shines above any of its competitors. With the integration of SkyDrive, accessing & working on your files has never been easier or more efficient. Office even displays your “recent documents” to quickly access a file you are reading or working on. The "recent documents" are linked to the documents on your PC or tablet.

SkyDrive has really improved over the past year. Microsoft currently is offering 7 GBs free. If you do not use Office SkyDrive is still there to manage and store documents. SkyDrive can also be accessed on your PC at

The interface of the Windows 8 Phone is also far superior to the IPhone. I also give Microsoft credit here for developing a completely new design for their smartphone. In place of stagnate icons and screens that move from left & right are “live tiles” that can be sized from small to medium to large. When the tiles are medium or large “live” content is often displayed. Because of this no two Windows 8 phones will look alike once the user begins designing their display.

Although managing your music is a much more challanging task as opposed to the IPhone once configured it is actually not that bad. That being said there is work that needs to be done with the music player if Microsoft wants to seriously compete with the non-professional consumer. I have hope here because there is word that SkyDrive integration is around the corner. This would seem to be a natural place to store music in the cloud.

I will be continuing to use & evaluate this phone. With each passing week I become more convinced and hopeful that the Windows phone can become a real possibility, especially for the professional who wants to have a true “smartphone” that can do it all while remaining customizable and fun.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wireless @ Work

OK as I have been suggesting and predicting for almost a year know tablets are going to eventually take over the computing word. They have already begun this take over in the consumer market. You could see this when it was reported that for the first time in a decade computer sales actually fell this holiday season. However the biggest hurdle for tablets is going to be in the professional market. This will happen eventually as well, it will just take a bit more time. With each new innovation in software and hardware development we are inching closer to a tablet dominated workplace. I am not talking ipads here folks. Windows 8 tablets will probably be the winner here.

An example of this trend is my ongoing effort to find new and exciting ways of getting our work done.... at work. Access to work files and programs will eventually be available wherever we go. Today this vision is beginning to come true.

Through a secure wireless network with AD sync here you can see I am running one of our programs on a Windows 8 tablet.
It's not perfect yet - but yes I have this network application running on a Windows 8 Tablet!

Java Security Alert - Update

Despite a software pitch for Java software released on Monday, January 14 by Oracle, the Department of Homeland Security warned millions of computer users about a threat “in the wild.” Oracle Released a Java Security Fix yesterday, January 15, 2013; But Homeland Security was still not pleased.

Security experts are warning users to disable Java on their computers to avoid being compromised by hackers. As a result, the department’s Computer Emergency Readiness Team advised PC users to “consider disabling Java in Web browsers, until adequate updates are available.”

Last week, the department warned of the vulnerability of Java, which is owned by Oracle, especially in the latest version 7 of the software. Oracle said it had released a new version, Update 11, to fix the problems. Meanwhile, Microsoft, said it had released a security advisory for its Internet Explorer browser versions 6, 7 and 8, which “could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code if a user accesses a specially crafted website.”

The flaws are important because of the increasing use of websites for banking, financial orders and retail shopping, where credit card and bank account numbers are entered online. Hackers can buy packs that identify flaws, and then hack into websites or entire retail networks to intercept those numbers.

The Cyber Security task force also said that hackers can access ad networks that take consumers to these same sites or that post malware onto their devices. Oracle said its latest patches address the latest flaws and set the security level on Java to “high” in a bid to alert users that malware could be downloaded onto their machines.

My Java Advice

When you visit a website and Java wants to run you will normally be presented with a pop-up message asking for permission to run. If you are not 100% comfortable with the website you are visiting do not provide approval for Java to run.

How Do You Disable Java in Internet Explorer?

1. If you use Internet Explorer version 7 or above, open Internet Explorer and select Tools | Manage Add-ons then skip to Step 3. If you use an older version of Internet Explorer, open Internet Explorer and select Tools | Internet Options and continue to Step 2.

2. From the Internet Options window, click the Programs tab and select Manage Add-ons.

3. From the Add-ons windows, click once to select (highlight) Java Plug-in then click the Disable button. Click Close and OK to accept the change.

4. Alternatively, you can also click Tools | Internet Options | Advanced. If Java is installed in your browser, you will see a listing for Sun Java in the Internet Options menu. Just uncheck it to disable.

5. When you encounter a site that requires Java (for example, some small online games and calculators), you can re-enable Java easily by following the same steps above, this time selecting the enable option.

You can get more directions for many vesions of Windows & Browsers on Java's website.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

City Council to Approve Padsite, Only??

Constructing a pad site that may never have drilling??


 The Dorchester Levee, Grand Prairie, TX

Click Here for Page 183 of the Grand Prairie, TX Agenda Details for the January 15, 2013 Meeting:


Click Here for Page 191 of the Agenda Details:

 Attachment A
Special Specifications

 – Newark E& P Operating, LLC. –

Race Partners Padsite 

1. Since this drill site is proposing to include horizontal drilling that crosses beneath the
Dorchester Levee, the City is requiring third party geologic and geophysical review to ensure the
integrity of the existing levee.
The information below and third party review will be required
prior to any drilling activity. The cost of this review will be the responsibility of the applicant. 

2. Prior to drilling, the applicant will provide any detail geologic, seismic and geophysical
data and information in the subsurface of the vicinity of the well and laterals that will allow a
third party evaluation of any subsurface fracture (e.g. faults and fractures and their potential for
being reactivated and generating earthquakes) as part of this drill site.
At a minimum this
information shall consist of bore hole logs, hydraulic fracturing parameters, geologic and
hydrologic characteristics of the rock above and below the fracture zone and seismic and
geophysical survey data.

3. Prior to the initiation of any construction activities that are governed by federal
floodplain regulations, the applicant shall provide the City copies of valid U.S. Corps of
Engineer permits, a Corridor Development Certificate, and obtain a City of Grand Prairie
Floodplain Development Permit that covers any planned activities.

Last we heard, there is a Moratorium in place on drilling operations within 3,000 feet of ALL water retention facilities owned and/or operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers in the City of Grand Prairie, TX.

However, it appears that the Dorchester Levee is owned by the City of Grand Prairie, TX??  So, we suppose it's OK to drill/frack under it?? Or to put down the concrete just in case!?? 

C-R-A-Z-Y and Dangerous!! Amen.

Avoid Ransomware At All Costs

During the past year many people I know have had their PCs infected with the form of malware that is now being called "ransomware". But what is "ransomware"?

Ransomware is the big brother of an older type of malware known as "scareware". When infected with "ransomware" your pc the rogue program begins to threaten to destroy your files if you don't pay up. The "ransomware" then starts erasing your stuff if you don't provide a large fee to some account that is provided by the "ransomware". Other variants claim that you have child pornography on your PC and proceeds to threaten to report you unless you pay. These blackmail scams are why the name "ransomware" is used. 

Both "scareware" and "ransomware" are huge problems because they use trickery and social engineering to get around anti-virus programs. They use false messages to fool people into clicking links on pop-ups. These pop-ups then trigger rogue JavaScript present on web pages that you are sent to after clicking the pop-up message. The pop-up messages can be confusing because they are specifically designed to look like a warning from your own anti-virus program. If you fall for this trick and click on the link you will bypass your anti-virus program and provide the malware permission to install. Once installed these malicious programs are very difficult to get rid of, even for experts. This is because they disable your anti-virus defenses. An example of a phony warning is shown below. Click on this and you really are infected.

Many times the only way of dealing with this sort of infection is to reformat the disk and re-install the operating system and programs. You will then need to restore your personal files from your latest backup. This can be very costly because if you do not know how to do this you will need to pay an expert.

Sadly countless people fail to back up their personal files and that it in the end, makes this situation all the more tragic.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Windows 8 Phone - Early Observations

As I finish up my first full week of using a Windows 8 Phone I wanted to note some early observations here. Once I got past the limitations of the app store and music player I started to get comfortable with the phone otherwise. The integration of Microsoft Office, SkyDrive, Lync and Sharepoint are truly the strengths of the Windows phone. Accessing, reviewing and even editing documents on the phone are easier and faster than any other smartphone I have ever used.

The interface of the Windows Phone does takes a little time to get used to but after a day or 2 I quickly mastered its use and customization. I will give Microsoft this. Apple and Android phones use icons to display applications and multiple screens to organize the program flow. Microsoft actually innovated with their Windows 8 operating system. The “metro style” tiles only flow vertically. The tiles can be sized from small to medium and large. Many of the tiles are live which means that “live” information is displayed as opposed to the same old “icon”.

Technical Information – Nokia 8202Windows 8 Phone

Here are some technical specifications, which are all very acceptable. The Windows Phone I am using is the Lumia 820. The phone has a 4.3 inch screen.  The phone is 10mm thick and comes in at 160g, which is a little heaver then the Iphone5.  It has a dual core 1.5Ghz processor with 1GB of ram and a 8mp camera on the back. There is 16gb of internal storage and an expandable micro-SD slot. 

From it's easier to get at buttons; its wireless charging shells, expandable memory, to its exclusive apps the Lumia 822 is a fine smartphone. 

Final Thoughts After Week 1

In many ways, the Windows 8 smartphone operating system is superior to both Android and the iPhone, notably for the way it delivers information to you without you having to go out and grab it. Windows Phone 8 deserves the chance it appears to be finally getting.  I look forward to the continued evaluation of this phone.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Dallas, TX ~ Gas Processing Capital of the Southwest?

Those decisions are being made today at Dallas City Hall.  Or more likely, those decisions have already been made Behind-Closed-Doors.  There is a template.  It's called Fort Worth, Texas.  Thing is, Fort Worth has the gas wells, and now unless sanity prevails, it looks as if Dallas will be the processing plant. 

Rick Perry and Barry Smitherman have done good work for the industry.  Real good. 

God. Help. Us. Please.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Windows 8 Phone - That was Easy!

OK I am starting to settle in with my new Windows 8 phone. Once I got over (and accepted) the limited apps [in the store] and weak music player I really started to enjoy the smartphone for what is strived to be. A strong option for anyone who simply desires a great work device. First, if you are a Microsoft enterprise user, either on premises or in the cloud or hybrid the setup for these devices are exceptionally easy. Once the phone is activated all I had to do was log into my Microsoft account after which my email and SkyDrive accounts were setup and synced. Out of the box, Microsoft Office is ready to go. Open Microsoft Office and all of your files (through SkyDrive or SharePoint) are ready for you.

I set the phone up in under 5 minutes!   

I will talk more about the actual use of the phone soon but wanted to report on how easy these phones are to setup and use, especially if you are a Microsoft Office user.

I will touch on the current state of the Microsoft Store in a later article as well.

Secure Your Social Networks

If you keep one New Year’s resolution how about this one? Take social networks seriously. If you do not it's only a matter of time before you will get taken by malicious links and social apps that try to steal your personal information, financial information or spread spam (in your name).

And that doesn't even include dozens of other privacy issues. Do you really want your employer to see all your personal life details? So consider securing your social network security and privacy settings. Take a close look at the security and privacy settings for the social networks you use. Learn what each of the settings mean, and adjust them as you see fit.

Use PIN Protection On Your Mobile Devices

Protect Your Personal Data on Your Mobile Devices

Smartphones and tablets are mini computers, and if they get lost or stolen, others may be able to access your email and social networks, browse through your photos, files, and text messages, and access other accounts that you’ve downloaded apps for.

You can protect yourself by enabling the lock screen with a PIN number requiring a PIN or password before accessing your device in permitted.

Turning on PIN protection varies between devices, but you should be able to find it in your phone or tablet's settings app. A password or PIN isn't perfect, but it's a good first line of defense if your phone is lost, misplaced or ends up in the hands of a would be data thief. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Windows 8 Phone - Music Player

I really do like much of what I see with my new Windows 8 phone. I really do. However here is a second article in a row with a negative tilt. You see I love my music. So much so that even in this cloud based world I need to have my music with me, on my devices wherever I go. One of the best things about the IPhone is its excellent music/iTunes interface. Syncing and organizing music on Apple devices is insanely easy. With Microsoft…. not so much.
The Windows 8 music player (pictured left) is weak, overly complicated and simply does not work very well. First you have the problem of getting your music to the phone. There are basically 2 choices for doing this. One is using the Windows Phone App which you can install on you PC. Once installed you can sync directly from your iTunes library or by browsing your PC for the music you want.

The Windows 8 Phone - PC App

The second choice is by dragging and dropping your music files to the Windows 8 Phone drive. Neither of these solutions are anywhere near the ease of use IPhones enjoy. My other problem with the Windows 8 phone music player is it seems to have a trouble displaying some of the cover art.

The sound quality on my Lumia 822 is fine and I could not hear any distinguishable difference from my IPhone.  
I will be patient here because the Windows 8 Phones are so new and there is sure to be improvement with the music player functions. There are strong rumors that music player abilities will be integrated into SkyDrive. This is exciting and could go a long way towards Microsoft finally challenging Apple with music integration.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

A GREAT family outing idea for you this week! Hope you are able to take advantage of it! See this link for a schedule and all activities:

Windows 8 Phone – Living Without Apps

The first thing I found myself doing with my new Windows 8 phone was looking for the same apps that I had become accustomed to with my IPhone. I was not surprised to find that many apps were not available. It is important to remember that Windows 8 (phone) is young and although the app store inventory is growing it currently is simply missing many of the apps I have enjoyed in the past. Several of the basic apps are there, like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, NFL Mobile, ESPN, CNN and Zite. While others like Instagram, Pandora, and LogMeIn are not available at this time.

While I believe Microsoft will eventually make most of the popular apps available in the months to come there is a workaround. This is because Windows 8 (phone) comes with a fully functional version of Internet Explorer. Therefore you can simply go to the webpage and “pin it” to your desktop. In fact in many cases the native website is actually superior to the app.
Living without some of my favorite apps is definitely one of the biggest challenges I am struggling with so far.

Coming up next  is my review of the music player.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Windows 8 - iMessage You Haunt me

Why Switch to Windows 8 Smartphones?
OK so as I reported in yesterday's article I decided to switch to a Windows 8 phone in order to evaluate it's potentional as a professional smartphone. Right now our users have a mixture of Android and Iphone devices. Both of these operating systems bring some good things to the table while each are also weak in other areas. As a management concern having mulptiple devices issued can complicate tech support. If, and this is currently a BIG if, Microsoft can bring a strong smartphone solution to the market I believe information technology departments will move towards Microsoft over the next several years. However these Windows 8 phones are just becoming available so the end result will not be known for at least a year. It is a result of all of this that found me switching from my iphone to a Windows 8 phone.

The Switch
OK so here we go. Yesterday my new Nokia 822 Windows 8 phone arrived. I shut off my iphone and called Verizon Wireless to switch the phone. After the switch everything was working fine. Indeed setting up our Microsoft 365 email account, SkyDrive, Lync and Sharepoint could not have been any easier. In less then 5 minutes all of my Microsoft accounts and files were working great on my new phone. However after about 30 minutes I realized that text messages were not making it to my phone. I could send messages and they arrived at their destination without a problem. The problem was that the responses were not making it to my phone. I quickly discovered that the problem was only happening with iphones. I called Verizon Wireless who had me "wipe" my old iphone but the problem continued. I was then transferred to Nokia support who reported it was not their problem and I was sent back to Verizon Wireless. Within minutes I was on a conference call with Apple Support.

Beware iMessage
Now if you have a iphone and you are considering switching to an Android or Windows phone pay attention friends. The Apple Support representative asked if I had other "Apple" devices. I said that I had an IPAD. I was directed to turn off the "imessage" service or at least remove the "phone number" from the "imessage" setup. Once I did this text message starting arriving to my Windows 8 phone! I was so happy.

If you have an iphone and use the text messaging service you probably noticed that the color of the text bubbles change based on if you are communicating with another iphone or another type of smartphone. It is this "imessage" service that makes this happen. Because the "imessage" service was running on my IPAD the text mesages were going to my IPAD and not making it to my new Windows 8 phone. Once "imessage" was turned off on the IPAD the messages were not going there and the messages were allowed to continue on all the way to my new phone.

You have 2 choices if you switch from an iphone to another device type. This is only a concern IF you have other Apple products with "imessage".

1. Simply turn the "imessage" service off.
2. You can leave the "imessage" service on, however you will need to uncheck your mobile phone number from it.

Moving On
OK now that all this is behind me I can actually start using my new Windows 8 Phone. I will post more articles as my experience continues. Wish me luck and stay tuned.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Windows 8 Phone - Day 1

First let me apologize about my abscence from the "West Chester Tech Blog" for the past couple of weeks. The end of the year was very busy in my office and then of course the holidays were upon us and much of my time was consumed by Christmas & New Years. Anyway with all of that in the past and 2013finally here this fine blog is active again.

Thanks for sticking with me.

First on my agenda was switching from my iphone to a Windows 8 phone this week. I had read and continue to read many good reviews of Microsoft's new mobile OS. Therefore as 2012 was closing I knew that a month long demo was called for in early 2013.

I will say that I have high hopes for Microsoft's new mobile OS. With the integration of Microsoft Office, Sharepoint and SkyDrive there is a real possibility that the void left by RIM can finally be filled for those of us looking for an excellent mobile platform to fullfill our mobile needs both at work and play.

Today I switched to the Nokia Lumia 822 running Windows 8. I am going to end today's post there but do not fear because I will continue the adventure of switching from Apple's to Microsoft's OS tomorrow. As with most things in life it was not as easy to switch as it should have been. Today I was lucky enough to speak with tech support at Verizon Wireless, Nokia and even Apple.

Tomorrow I will report on the experience I had today when switching from the iphone to the Windows phone. During upcoming articles you will be able to follow me as I continue to make the transition from the very hip iphone to Windows 8.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year! Speaking of New Year's resolutions...
I've been encouraged by this list of non-resolutions. I hope you are too!

Here are some Home School Educator's NON-New Year's Resolutions:
1. I resolve to NOT try and make my children "perfect" homeschooling examples.
2. I resolve to NOT try and prove that I am a "perfect" homeschooling parent.
3. I resolve to NOT try and compare myself to every other homeschooling parent.
4. I resolve to NOT give up on expecting the best from myself.
5. I resolve to NOT give up on my students.
6. I resolve to NOT get discouraged when I have bad days, but to call someone on the phone who may encourage me in some way (prayer, a cup of coffee, or just saying "it's ok"!).
7. I resolve to NOT forget to plug into a support group for my support and theirs!

Happy New Year West Chester CC Families! Hope you are enjoying some wonderful family time!

Below are some links and information that you might find interesting related to our upcoming science experiments:

Resources for W13-18 Science Experiments

Week 13 Science Experiments
#121 Tilt – To demonstrate the effect of the Earth’s tilt on seasons.
(start at :59 and end at 2:30)

#124 Splitter – To determine how ice can split rocks

Week 14 Science Experiments

#125 Mineral Streak Test – To demonstrate a mineral streak test

#126 Sampler – To demonstrate core sampling
Museum Guide by Answers in Genesis p. 165-169 

VIDEO – Geological Evidences (The Grand Canyon – Rapid Strata Deposits)

Week 15 Science Experiments

#127 Sinkers – To demonstrate how placer ore deposits form
A research article by two Russian Creation Scientists (formerly evolutionists) who found that placer ore deposits are actually more consistent with catastrophism than with uniformitarianism.

#128 Prints-To determine how fossils were preserved
The Fossil Book by Gary Parker (Answers in Genesis)

Museum Guide by Answers in Genesis p. 171-179

It Couldn’t Just Happen by Lawrence O. Richards.  p. 46-47

VIDEO - Fossils and the Flood, What’s the Connection?

VIDEO - The Fossil Record

Week 16 Science Experiments
#130 Stretch – To demonstrate the effect of a tension force

#132 Spurt – To demonstrate what causes magma to move

It Couldn’t Just Happen by Lawrence O. Richards.  p. 35-36

Week 17 Science Experiments
#137 Shake Up – To determine the effect of motion on weathering

#138 Rock Bridge – To demonstrate how natural bridges stand

Owachomo Bridge at the Natural Bridges National Monument. What's the difference between a bridge and an arch? Bridges are formed by running water eroding the rock underneath them. Arches are formed by wind, rain, ice and other types of erosion.

Week 18 Science Experiments
#139 Tip – To determine if air has weight.

#140 Push Up – To demonstrate the strength of atmospheric pressure