History of the RSS Feed!

This fascinating infographic by Dino Londis at Tech Page One, came across my LinkedIn newsfeed today. In searching for an alternative to Facebook which I have become disenchanted with as of late, this was just so refreshing, confirming the path I had plotted in my mind to move away from the social juggernaut. RSS is the alternative! Chatting with a friend today we came to a consensus that Facebook is becoming more of a newsfeed than a social network anyway. Gone are the days when Facebook answered the important questions such as “what The Office character are you?” It is morphing into an endless stream of news stories that cause more outrage than they do convey information. Anyway, love the infographics on this site! Visit the site and enjoy!

LinkedIn Answers Retires

I just got a notice from LinkedIn that they will be discontinuing LinkedIn answers. It’s going to way of the dodo on January 31st, just like Google Answers, WikiAnswers and Encyclopedia Britannica before them. It’s no surprise… Everyone knows that Yahoo Answers is the only answers platform on the web (or at least the most prevalent that comes up in a Google search). The LinkedIn answers platform was tough to navigate, many of the answers were way off, and the questions that got the most answers were equally as ridiculous and simplistic. Can’t say I’m too broken up about the loss of LinkedIn answers.

Here is the notice I got from LinkedIn:

Hi LinkedIn Member:
As you’ve seen, we’ve made major upgrades to the professional news, commentary and conversation features on LinkedIn. And we’re just getting started.
In this process we evaluated how our current products and features are being used. To ensure we focus on building the best products, we’ll be retiring LinkedIn Answers on January 31 and it’ll be removed from our site. Instead, we’re focusing our efforts on developing new and more engaging ways to share and discuss professional topics across LinkedIn. We look forward to sharing the details with you in the coming months, so please stay tuned.
In the meantime, you can continue to share insights and questions on LinkedIn in these ways:

  • Connect with like-minded professionals in one of our 1.5M+ Groups
  • Ask other LinkedIn members questions and receive immediate feedback via Polls
  • Follow influencers for access to insightful professional content
  • Facilitate conversations with your connections via status updates
If you would like more information on these changes, please visit our Help Center

Regards,

The LinkedIn Team

Erase a Hard Drive Forever: Three Things You Can Do!

Hard Drive

Did you know that deleting your files on your computer doesn’t really delete the files? Reformatting your computer and re-installing an operating system doesn’t get rid of them either. All this does is make your data unreadable to an operating system leaving your hard drive data susceptible to data recovery tools that identity thieves can use to get your personal information. Fortunately, there are measures you can take to protect your data from unauthorized access when you are disposing of your old computer. Here are three methods you can do to protect your data from unauthorized access.

1) Encrypt your data… 

Microsoft Windows 7 (ultimate and business editions) allows you to encrypt your hard drive. What this does is is make your data readable only with a password or certificate that allows you to access files and folders on the drive. These versions come with something called BitLocker which is a comprehensive encryption tool. OR, it’s as simple as right clicking on the directory you want to encrypt, selecting the folder properties, clicking the advanced tab and selecting the Encrypt contents box. This can be done to your entire C drive on your computer. Unfortunately, it is not available on all windows versions (for goodness sake why not?). Fortunately there is another free product you can get to encrypt your hard drive called TrueCrypt, which is an open source product available for free and will absolutely protect your data through encryption, and my preferred method for encryption.

2) “Nuke” your hard drive with DBAN.

DBan or “Dirk’s Boot and Nuke” is a program that overwrites all the data on your hard drive so as to render it unreadable. It is as simple as creating a DBAN disk, booting your computer to the disk and allowing DBAN to do it’s thing. After the process is complete, there is no getting your data back. No operating system or data recovery tool in the world will be able to piece back the information that once was on your hard drive. ABMC Recommends DBAN as does PC Magazine and CNet.

3) Destroy your hard drive (not recommended). 

Okay, this is the path of least resistance for many. The method is simple: Take apart your computer, take the hard drive out and smash it to pieces with a hammer (be sure to wear eye protection as shards abound). This will certainly render you hard drive unreadable. However, you still need to have the know how to take apart your computer and when you do throw it away you will be releasing all kinds of toxins into the environment. Rather than do this, ABMC recommends the first two methods for wiping your data off the drive so that it can be reused and recycled.

Finally, ABMC is happy to offer hard drive encryption and erasing as a free service when you give your computer to be recycled. Rest assured, your data will never see the light of day, not even by us as data encryption is the first thing we do when we get a computer.

Social Networking Buttons

Why is it so hard to find the right social networking buttons. One would think that with the ubiquity of social media, it would be a simple Google search. But finding a match set, with transparency and the right resolution can be tricky. So I have collected these more attractive buttons for your consideration and download. Enjoy!

webshots youtube yelp wordpress vimeo twitter technorati myspace netvibes newsvine picasa pownce reddit stumbleupon mixx livejournal magnolia linkedin lastfm google furl digg ebay facebook feed flickr friendfeed friendster delicious blogger


HostGator trying to eat up competition with end of the world sale

HostGator's front page for their end of the world sale. (copyright HostGator).

HostGator’s front page for their end of the world sale. (copyright HostGator).

With perhaps the most obnoxious advertisements you have ever seen for what is great web hosting; HostGator is having its end of the world sale today, December 21, 2012. Boasting over 9000000 domains hosted, seems they are aggressively trying to get your hosting business before it’s too late. I like HostGator well enough to the point where I would definitely recommend them to friends and people with a passive interest in hosting their own blog. Their ratings are topnotch and all I hear are great things about their service, stability etc. But I can’t imagine sending certain clients of mine, some of whom are former C-level executives, to this website and instructing them to “sign up for this”. Yes, unfortunately I have an image to maintain and the tongue-in-cheek approach only goes so far before I have to put on my professional. Nevertheless, I thought today’s HostGator front page was so clever (like a comic strip I’d want to clip and keep for posterity) that I took this screenshot for you all (and me) to enjoy forever, in the event that you don’t make the end of the world sale! If you miss the end of the world sale, they have these 50% off sales all the time, so it’s worth the visit if you’re in the market for hosting! Enjoy!