MozBackup Review

I’ve been having ever-worsening computer problems over the past several months. My power settings weren’t remaining as I set them. I stopped being able to use the “restart” option, because when I would do so my computer would freeze on the “logging off” screen and sit there for 16 hours. My folders stopped refreshing themselves when I would make a change. A slew of other things added to this, and I decided it was getting time for a fresh start.

I’m a pro when it comes to backing up data and reinstalling my OS. I’ve done it no less than 100 times since I got this laptop in 2008. Most of those times were attempts to run Linux as an alternative to the Vista I was sold with the computer. I’m not one of those Linux nuts. Frankly, I prefer the ease and usability of Windows. Vista, however, was a trainwreck on this computer. I had every single problem possible with that damn OS. Since my computer isn’t a standard brand, and has some funky extra doodads and whatzits, every Linux we tried failed in some way.

Anyway, as soon as it was available I got myself a copy of

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LM Remote KeyMap Software

As I’ve mentioned before, my husband and I use a homemade DVR system. At the time of that post, we used Beyond TV as our media center.

It turned out that running Beyond TV when we didn’t have it connected to tuners for recording television made little sense. While it is a wonderful program that had served us well for years, it was just too bulky for our purposes. Since we were simply downloading and watching things, what we really needed was a file system and a viewer. Keep in mind that we were running a very old laptop as the HTPC.

So we tried Boxee, we tried Media Portal, we tried Sage TV, we tried others. Nothing really worked for us and our dated machine.

For a few months we used the standard Windows file system and GOM Player as our video. While it worked, it looked a little cheap. Okay, very cheap. I mean, who wants a plain white-with-yellow-folders menu as their media center?

A few weeks ago my husband dropped his netbook and broke the screen. He disconnected the old laptop from the TV and put the screenless netbook in place of

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Stumbleupon

Are you a stumbleupon user? I am.

If you’re not, let me ask you this: what the hell do you do on the internet? Because I really can’t remember what I did before I started stumbling in 2006.

In case you’re unfamiliar with stumbleupon, it’s a “social bookmarking network.” I prefer to describe it as an amazing way to learn things, discover topics that you didn’t realize you were interested in, and keep in touch with your friends and family. I’ve made a few friends via stumbleupon, but really I use it mostly to share websites directly with my friends. My husband and I will sit right next to each other and send each other pages for hours, stopping to discuss things that interest us or watch a video.

If you haven’t used it, try it. Give it a week. More than half of the people I introduce to it continue to use it on a regular basis, and I use it for hours every day.

I was looking at my stumbleupon pages today, and for the first time decided to take a look at my tag cloud. It was a moment of revelation. I was looking at 4 years

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The Future of Advertising

I’ve been using a homemade DVR system for about 5 years. BeyondTV has been our choice mostly because of its fantastic file management system, and their “SmartSkip” technology. SmartSkip does an amazing job of highlighting the commercial breaks in the television shows you record, and the remote control lets you skip the offending segment with the push of a button. This means that I have effectively eliminated advertising from my television viewing since 2004.

Additionally, I don’t read magazines, or the newspaper. I listen to NPR or MP3s while driving. I use Adblock Plus while on websites. When I realized how little advertising I was taking in, I started intentionally not looking at billboards on the highway. Now I hardly even notice they are there.

A few weeks ago we canceled Comcast as our cable provider. We now only get our television shows from the internet. We’ve been using a program called TED, or Torrent Episode Downloader, which actively searches for and retrieves new shows that we want to watch. Takes a lot of the work out of illegal TV program downloading. It’s has been amazing with some things, and not so much with others. For instance, The Biggest

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How to cancel Comcast in 2 minutes or less

I’m sure everyone by now has heard the infamous phone conversation Vincent Ferrari had with AOL when he tried to cancel his service with them.  This morning my husband had to cancel our Comcast internet service because we recently got Verizon FiOS. We are keeping our TV service with them, though, because it is less expensive, and we use their basic cable feed to run our BeyondTV system.  If you are well prepared, as he was, you can make sure your call doesn’t drag on endlessly. Here are some examples you can use when trying to shorten your service-canceling phone calls:

1. When they say, “Why exactly would you like to cancel your service?”  You should respond with: “Because I don’t use it.”  I know this sounds simple, and it is. But it works. If you give them any other reason, they will try to counter with a reason that you should stay with them. Bill too high?  They’ll lower it.  Customer service too poor?  They’ll give you a few free months.  Changing service providers?  They’ll bump you up to better service as well as lowering your bill.   However, if you simply tell them that you don’t use the service,

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