SSW Blog

Purple P3, A Cool Software

Posted on | August 10, 2009 | 8 Comments

As I had dared at my own risk to download P3 onto my Acer laptop, I had enjoyed using it for several weeks but of course I had discovered some errors.

P3 is a free software application to enable video conference and text messaging platform. Purple Communication is selling P3 Netbooks but you would be able to download P3 software from HOVRS web site.  At the same time you need to register your Purple membership at HOVRS and require your user-name and password in order to access to P3.

For more information about P3, please feel free to visit Purple’s Press Release.

After trying P3 to contact several deaf users via SVP, MVP and P3, I found some bug errors and however, I tried to find wiki software but unfortunately there is none. To my surprise, there is no wiki or wiki How web site except Purple P3 Support . (At last I had accidentally stumbled onto the support forum web site but not sure why it is difficult for us to search for this particular site. )

Why not create a simple direct proper link for Purple P3 software like wiki or any of wiki list? This would allow developers and users to share feedback, troubleshooting, and suggestions as well as report error messages.

I am not sure why Purple P3 works only with Windows XP but what about Windows Vista? That is why I had decided to ignore the requirements and gone ahead to download the software. Funny, it also had stated Internet Explorer 7 but I had rather favored Mozilla Firefox. It looks like the requirements need updated although it worked fine for me to download it on the Windows Vista via Mozilla Firefox.

Secondly I was able to call deaf user from P3 to SVP 200 although I had received the call vice-versa.  I had to click on either ACCEPT or REJECT on the dialog box before answering VP call. A minor hassle is that the laptop must be turned on in order to accept incoming calls.

Difference
LAPTOP
14″ – 17″ screen, large, loaded down with features & power.
NOTEBOOK
12″ – 14″ screen, ultralight and less weight.
NETBOOK
12 Inch max screen, weight of 1.1kg and below.

After updating the address book at HOVRS web site I had signed in P3 and noticed the address book being updated accordingly. I can see now that we cannot update the address book on P3 but we go to the HOVRS web site in case for adding or deleting contacts. This is one of several disadvantages. Maybe it is an idea for P3 support group to consider adding this new feature. Or, maybe it works fine on just P3 Netbook.

On P3 there are other features showing Call History and Settings. Call History feature is nice to know whom I made calls in past. When I put the mouse on those calls under the Call History to make calls, an error message had appeared and said:


MAIN_WINDOW#call Webservice(MVP_GetVRSUserRecruit_CallList,…):

execHTTP Request() ->onExeception(): Object required (TypeError, #-2146827864)

I wonder whether it is a bug that may need tweaking or rewriting.  On the  Settings, I am able to reset camera settings but for limited access by adjusting bandwidth speed to check one of three speed levels: 256, 384 or 512 during call time. If wishing to automatically adjust the speed level while its default speed level is 256, I could not reset the bandwidth speed level after or before calling. It is nice although I am able to view the connection dialog box showing transmit (as of uploading), receive (as of downloading), connection type (P2P via H.323), and round-time trip (performance measurement of bandwidth and latency like typically 110 ms of cable).

For example, at my relative’s house I hooked up my laptop via wireless connectivity and initiated a call to SVP 200. Video picture on another call did not run smoothly but choppy and freezing up occasionally but my camera web cam worked very beautifully. It was because of wireless connectivity issue. So I had re-hooked up laptop with Ethernet cable (to the router port hub) and however, both videos on my laptop worked perfect except the caller had claimed that my video was choppy. I believed there was no such feature to tweak two way video conference in one way or round way direct connection.

Concerning about 10-digit numbering, by calling from P3 laptop, strangely IP address had showed up on another caller but did not indicate P3 real number. This is another disadvantage that I have to divulge P3 phone number in advance in case that callers wish to reach me.

This is a cool software, Purple P3 as a popular issue right now. Some people in this community are asking some questions and experimenting their new P3 Netbooks, notebooks or laptops if they would. Of course, there is always room for future improvement. I will definitely bring my laptop for this camping weekend and will experiment some video calls at the campground.

Facebook Etiquette Tips

Posted on | August 2, 2009 | No Comments

As you know social media is a collection of online tools to communicate with your group, friends or colleagues, there is a breakdown of the social media as follows:

  • Social Networking sites: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or YouTube.
  • Social Bookmarking sites: Delicious, Diigo or StumbleUpon.
  • Social News sites: Digg, Reddit or Fark.

Right now I focus on popular social networking site, FACEBOOK and would like to explain about the rules of etiquette tips. I am sure some people are not aware or not familiar with the etiquette in social networking sites. I don’t blame them but don’t appreciate it when they say something to offend us. They should have to ask us first before next step to say something.

For example, we would want to sell business through social networking sites but depending on where you join. It is ok for you to discuss business via LinkedIn where it is for business networking while it is not proper for Facebook.

Facebook is for friends and colleagues.  I am surprised that some friends via Facebook are very rude to sell their business and I asked them politely not to. They became defensive and stated that it was fine with their friends.  I had changed their status to “limited profile” or “unfriend” status. It would not be a problem if you are uncomfortable with some friends you would do to “unfriend” them.

1st tip: Don’t sell business. Ask politely for permission.

I am not sure whether it is good idea to display photos about your family, children and parties on Facebook.  Friends, please don’t display embarrassing photos about your friends unless you need to ask their permission. The reason is that you have to remember the Internet is “Wild, Wild West”, and too publicity. Everyone across the world would see you and find the pictures very easy target for future possible robbery, invasion, kidnapping, or new crime.

2nd Tip: Be sure your photo albums are restricted. Don’t display children under the age of 18 (minors).

It is understandable for you to inform us where you are doing like saying good morning, going to work, watching sports, or so forth like too personal statements. Be forewarned that some people may stalk you or follow you. They are able to find out where you are doing at work, home or somewhere else. Suppose you announce you are off on vacation and so some people take an advantage of you by breaking in your house and stealing everything.  Who knows you will find your empty house after vacation.

3rd Tip: Don’t broadcast about yourself to the public where, when or what you are doing.

I appreciate it much for some of my friends to add comments to my wall but don’t say anything too personal. For example, when I posted an important news going on here on my wall you said something like how my family was doing. I had to remove it immediately as it was too personal. If you wanted to say something personal then you may shoot me an email rather than the wall post.

4th Tip: Please respect your Facebook friend and send an email if you think it may be personal. Don’t post anything too personal on your friends’ walls.

For joining the group, organization or events, it is great to get together on the Facebook Official page.  It is improper for some groups to join “heavy discussion” or become hot issues. If you like to create group “think tank” discussion then it is the best for you to create the forum on your own website like Yahoo! Groups.  I notice some political groups are the ones to utilize the Facebook page but it is not good idea.

5th Tip: Be sure the Page is for gathering social events and organizations.

Sometimes some of my friends asked me to add their “friends” to my Facebook. I am uncomfortable not because I don’t know them, but my friends had told me to.

6th Tip: Be sure to ask our friends if they know your peers. Don’t force them to add your friends as theirs.

Sometimes I was uneasy when several friends asked me for a “date”. It is ok for them to ask about themselves to introduce as “friends” but please don’t look for a date or single match on Facebook.

7th Tip: Be Friend, don’t look for “love” match on Facebook.

It is terribly unfortunate about some ‘fake” deaf people to ask you to add them as “friends”.   It had happened to me twice when I was puzzled they kept pestering me via Facebook chat like instant messaging platform. I asked in my usual nice way where they came from and how they became deaf. Their replies were not making sense and very fishy. For example she lived in Texas and claimed she attended American School for the Deaf while she couldn’t say her class year or how she became deaf. I knew immediately and had to unfriend her quickly.

8th Tip: Develop your own questions when in doubt. Ask in a nice way if you know her or him.

How do you like friends to say again and again, “Happy Birthday” on your wall? I dread it much but I asked them politely if they like to share birthday greetings and please visit my official page. However they did not follow throughly but several did. I understand that some of them may not know how to do it.

9th Tip: Don’t post “e-birthday greeting bomb” on the wall.

I am relieved when stopping to receive too many applications, causes or any others as forwarding by friends who wanted me to add to my FB like Sea Garden or Texas Hold’em Poker. It is too much hassle to add one by one application.

10th Tip: don’t send any application but keep it to yourself. Share it at minimum level if you like friends to join.

Some people had informed me that they had no time to join Facebook, thought Facebook was bad, and too publicity. That is ok for them not to prefer joining for any reason. I had informed them it was a perfect place for social user interaction and if they like to learn they are welcome to contact me anytime.

11th Tip: Don’t force anyone to join unless they ask for information. Let them know they would control Facebook by accepting or declining anyone into their social groups.  They are partly right about its publicity issue.

I believe strongly that Facebook is an excellent useful tool for us to stay in touch with our own social groups as we have the right to accept or reject anyone. There is nothing wrong if we want to unfriend some people whom we don’t wish them to know about our privacy lives. You need to remember that Facebook is only for friends and family to interact as much as necessary to build up good rapport, spirit of friendship, and the esteem for social life. As long as you would follow the etiquette tips you will live up to your good reputation.

High Hope for our Future National Broadband Plan

Posted on | June 30, 2009 | No Comments

Lately there is a firestorm over how to draft some specifics into a national broadband policy as well as there is ongoing debate about how to advance broadband deployment, how to define broadband as “service” or “infrastructure” and other concerns like unserved and underserved rural areas. The plan will be due by February 17, 2010. I am grateful when FCC decided to extend a deadline to July 21st to file comments about issues relating to the Plan. Please be encouraged to file reply comments or surf through the FCC by typing “GN Docket No.09-51”. You will be able to read some filed comments and provide feedback about how to put together any important issues into the National Broadband Plan.

On June 16, 2009, the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation had confirmed Julius Genachowski, a new FCC Chairman. Look for the link: “View Captioned Webcast” (in spite of its poor quality of video; for warning: successive of black screens)

In hope to shift the FCC’s focus on the consumers from the Corporate interests, this Nomination committee had raised some excellent suggestions and concerns. Their major highlights are as follows:

  • FCC Reform – more transparency, more openness & fairness; and enforcement
  • Broadband Map
  • No need to “overburden” Broadcasters
  • Net Neutrality
  • Copyright protections in programming & entertainment
  • Broadband Installation in the Federal Road project
  • Uncompleted job of Digital TV Transition (DTV)
  • A new National Broadband Policy
  • Deployment Affordability
  • Declining of Traditional Media; Newspapers
  • Broadband Capability including deploying the fiber optics
  • Re-visit V-Chip
  • Universal Service Fund
  • E-911
  • Spectrum Policy
  • Wireless Broadband Network including mobile
  • Public Safety Network

However, I was very disappointed about some important aspects of equal access as missing from above. For example, what about captioning, TRS, equal access on the Internet and manufacturers for DVD, TV and HD like CC chip?

By April 2009, 63% of Americans had used broadband connections. Out of 30 countries, USA is lagging behind the world as 15th rank.  The Senate Nomination had mentioned that it is an embarrassment to the U.S. as being falling behind by broadband deployment, speed and price as well as performance.

From Our Taxpayers’ Expense

Do you know that the White House will provide $7.2 billion grant and loan program for broadband access? The breakdown of this program is as follows:

  • $250 million for innovative programs;
  • at least $200 million for upgrade tech & capacity;
  • $10 millions for audit & oversight;
  • $350 million for broadband mapping.

Will it be the FCC that oversees this massive project or who will make decisions about mapping the broadband across the nation? There is one place called Connected Nation to handle the broadband mapping project but almost all people who serve the board are representatives for Corporations. (See Info).

There are several websites about the broadband map in your area but some are shut down due to the sabotage lately.

Please be encouraged to file your comments at the FCC or one other web site: Internet for Everyone that will help you with the steps. Let’s look forward to the new FCC web site as FCC Chair Genachowski had promised the staff today on his brief speech.

Further Reading Recommendations:

1.  Information Technology and Innovation Foundation

2. Organization for Economic Co-Operation & Development

3. Broadband Census

4. Reaching for the American Dream by Connecting our Nation

5. Coalition of Organizations for Accessible Technology

Wisconsin’s Misstep of Passing State Law for Cochlear Implants

Posted on | June 15, 2009 | 7 Comments

As I had learned with dread feeling that Wisconsin had recently passed the bill proposal, Senate Bill 27 to require health insurers that cover hearing aids and cochlear implants for persons under 18 years of age, I bet that Wisconsin State Government made a fatal mistake to pioneer this unethical law. It is very dangerous precedent, representing the early stages of blowback from the propaganda campaign of promoting the lobotomy.

There are some unforeseen factors of Cochlear Implants (CI) as follows:

  • CI surgeries are experimental.
  • CI is not considered as a matter of death or life situation.
  • CI are called as “enhanced hearing aids”.
  • CI is useful for people who lose their hearing later but may not be suitable for people who are born deaf.
  • CI is a mechanical and foreign but non-organic. (Similar to pacemaker – limited functional ability)
  • FDA’s new warning states the risk of bacterial meningitis in children (3 out of 6, those children developed meningitis between three and four years after implantation.)

As I don’t want to go on as I believe most people would agree with me on the above list. Wisconsin’s passing the state law will definitely open a Pandora’s box  – to lead to some possibilities:

  • Unnecessary CI surgeries on babies who are born deaf. In long run those who wear CI have to endure months of speech therapy, every five or ten years of replacing CI devices, every two or three months of replacing batteries, and loss time of early learning (lagging educational, environmental and social skills).
  • Risk of loss of neurological ability during few successive CI surgeries
  • Unethical and radical therapies
  • Assemble line CI surgeries
  • Lack of the Right to Choose for Humanly Life  – very similar to lobotomy which surgeries occur near the brain and nerve system

I bet some people don’t wish anyone to fiddle with their brains and especially put foreign part inside their brains.  It is sad for everyone, not only Deaf people that school board members, educators, physicians, and professionals are interested in money rather than saving human lives.

As you would imagine about 200 babies are born deaf or hard of hearing in Wisconsin each year (so the Wisconsin govt had claimed), I would not blame their parents but they don’t understand about the dangers of CI. Parents would bring their children to hospitals for CI in high hope to see their children becoming normal like hearing people.  Come on, we hate hospitals! I am not surprised that some parents do not realize going forth and back to the hospitals must be frightening to their children.

Sorry, parents, not really, that is false hope but some deaf people who are trained to speak well would speak like deaf voice, no matter, how long they were trained. What if some deaf people are innate not to speak well should be “forced-speech”?

The state of Wisconsin government evidently forgets one important step by checking with FDA first before proceeding to draft the bill proposal but unfortunately that state would become murderer to the deaf and hard of hearing children by forcing the insurers to cover costs but possibly unforeseen lawsuits.  Per FDA’s warning, it would be possible that approx. 50% or half of 200 newborns with deafness in Wisconsin would be exposed to meningitis after CI surgery.  Very scary figure but what the heck the state legislators think? Did they know?  Or Pity to health insurers, they will be furious if learning about FDA warning and may consider their counterattack at the state of Wisconsin. Will they?

Back to the issue on the state law written poorly by the state of Wisconsin, it should be rewritten clearly that the costs for hearing aids should be covered by health insurance carriers for persons under the years of age 18.  No No No, they should exclude CI. I cannot answer about CI because it is not safe proof and experimental but it should be up to persons above the years of age 16 – persons’ the right to decide  to choose CI, not parents. It is inappropriate for the parents who make decisions over their children.  You have to remember that loss of hearing is not a matter of life or death.  Parents should not be informed that CI would cure deafness and of course it may be ineffective, not 100% guarantee. However the parents need to understand that CI may be good tool in helping improve speech ability.

Note that if you find this article very offensive about CI I hope you keep your mind open with open heart to listen to people who had been gone through similar fate as you do. I am very grateful for my parents because they had allowed me to make a decision and believed in me as I was able to make good judgment call as adult. (At that time I became the age of 16). After some tests, I was asked by doctors that I was a good candidate for CI surgery but I had weighed my decision on my own life and my future, not parents’ future and their dreams or hope. As I had decided not to choose, I rather live normally and enjoy whatever I can. I want to tell the parents that I am not sorry about my decision and love my parents very much for respecting for my right.

Bummer, No Success After WP 2.8 Upgrade

Posted on | June 12, 2009 | No Comments

Last night I had dared to apply the WP plugin, WordPress Automatic Upgrade and hoped that it may work once I upgraded WP from version 2.7.1 to 2.8. To my surprise, I had faced the blank white screen page except one error saying,

“Warning: require_once(ABSPATHwp-admin/includes/dashboard.php)
[function.require-once]: failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home/(username)/public_html/wp-admin/index.php on line 13”

No idea, I had to search through the support forum or google and however,  it was suggested that I tweaked the URL in php file. After tweaking it still did not work but led to another new error.  See the error message here:

“Fatal error: require_once() [function.require]: Failed opening required                                                                                          ‘ABSPATHwp-admin/includes/dashboard.php’                                                                                                                                          (include_path=’.:/usr/lib/php:/usr/local/lib/php’) in /home/(username)/public_html/wp-admin/index.php on line 13″

Again no idea what the heck this error means, I had to remove all old WP files and reinstall WP 2.8 except some files that I saved for backup. Of course, I had the old database files for backup. (God blessing!) After done with reinstalling WP 2.8, I had discovered that there was an error about plugin files as I had restored plugin from my old WP files. However, I had to clean out old plugins which were not activated during the blog site and reinstall new plugins that I want for the final site. Not easy to keep old plugins but I had to ensure that some plugins are upgraded and compatible with WP 2.8.

Finally after I spent over over 8 hours of repairing WP upgrade, this blog site came out working fine with WP 2.8 but visual text editor was missing (no Visual tab on Posts).  Then I was unwilling to trust anything saying upgrade button but had swallowed my doubt by going to Tools , Upgrade and clicked “Automatic Upgrade”. (I believed that it could reinstall the package to bring all files up-to-date in order.)  No luck, the visual editor did not appear, no matter.

As I had to scan through the WP forum and found one that had suggested that we turn off the Google Gears and the visual editor would appear. I thought it was a possibility and so I went along with this suggestion. It works fine. But, but but…what about IE? No success on Posts – Visual panel but nothing was typed on the screen – white blank! I am using the Mozilla Firefox for time being since the visual and html editor work on Posts. There is one bug being unsolved!

Phew! My advice is for you who want to upgrade your WP blogs, best to wait for several weeks and don’t upgrade to WP 2.8 yet.  There will be some new and unfriendly errors. I don’t know whether I will confront some new bugs here in WP 2.8 but pray that it will not happen again. Wish me luck!

Mozilla Firefox Ascends to the Top Browser Spot

Posted on | June 10, 2009 | 1 Comment

Browser Graph

StatCounter Global Stats

Based on browser statistics I had reviewed the history of browsers and discovered that Mozilla Firefox (FF) became currently popular browser this year, 2009. I am not sure whether it would be a leader in the browser market but I believe Internet Explorer continues as the browser leader depending on the demographics. Nice to watch the live graph of browsers at the link

As I believe you have some problems with FF and same as I do, I am trying to figure out why there are some repeated bugs that haven’t been fixed, unusual of Mozilla tech group because they usually repair quicker and respond very well to some bugs respectively.  In this case it has not occurred yet like the following:

  • Crashes
  • Slowest loading speed
  • Loss of bookmarking favorites
  • Too many addons
  • Uninstalling and re-installing
  • Once installing new browser version you need to set up extensions and plug-ins such as flash video, javascript, pdf, etc
  • Missing manage profile tab
  • Lack of  info about ongoing issues relating to the browser version upgrades
  • Log In Access Inflexibility

As you can see the long list of bug problems above, I am more than happy to share some reasons on several on the above list. One major reason is that I want to bring the tab back into the browser menu which is “Manage Profiles” . It would be easier and most convenient for us to secure one of multiple profiles as locked or checked while leaving other multiple profiles unchecked whenever running it. No need for FF repeatedly to ask me which profile before I run it. I would love to see this feature for managing profiles being enhanced. For example I would be able to save bookmarks by logging on the Internet and using profile to carry those over to any of browsers upon my preference. It looks like Diigo as similar as excellent example. It is very useful feature but sometimes awkward for several reasons like highlight, or sending via email that may not work.

I am tired of repeated FF crashes but I did my best to remove some features like Skype based on some suggestions via FF forum. Darnedest, it is no luck in spite of tweaking and removing addons I keep getting crashes and figuring out how to resolve this. Of course, I will report this persisting bug to the Bugzilla.

Regarding the browser extensions, plug-ins and addons, I wish that there are some kind of tips, reviews, or suggestions. For example I am not sure whether it is good idea to apply some of addons or extensions but where is information about important basics in order to make the complete browser package? I had to install some extensions regardless of which as part of basics like PDF, video, or downloading feature. One thing that I dislike from the FF extensions or addons is particularly Adobe as more likely as monopoly of the browser software.  There should be optional features availability like Nitro PDF Professional, OpenPDF, or other types of PDF and so no need to “force” us to install Adobe Reader.

Why not basic extensions with new FF ready before downloading?

As I offer computer troubleshooting job as one of some professional services for my business, Spiral Shell Web, I went out to assist some customers with their computers, desktop and laptop.  I found several customers who are not familiar with FF but they are used to Internet Explorer (IE), thanks to the manufacturers that package IE in every new computer hardware before selling on the market.  I had explained about needing to install basic extensions and addons but unfortunately it is inconvenient and uneasy for them to understand further technical stuff.  Some would say, “forget it, I rather stay with IE” or “My god no way for me to call you all times whenever I find something missing from the browser?”.  This shows some concerns about FF and so I hope Mozilla tech people may consider to load the FF browser with basic extensions before downloading new FF version.

In spite of serious concerns and flaws, FF is becoming our favorite cool browser. Let’s keep watching the live statistics and we believe, of course, that there are always some rooms to improve FF.

Netflix CEO: His Attitude Evokes Wrong Idea of Captioning

Posted on | May 29, 2009 | No Comments

As I happened to read a blog about CEO’s comments at the Annual Shareholder meeting about captioning in response to one shareholder. (“Got Shares?” Blog) I don’t want to repeat this but let you visit there and however, I want you all to go there and share what you think.

I am not sure what the heck CEO and Founder Reed Hastings thought about captioning. Surprisingly he was obviously ignorant because he believed hulu.com did not provide captioning.  Therefore he did not think Netflix wanted to go further anyway down the road. Reed Hastings, he should’ve checked with hulu.com before making any comment. Hulu.com does provide some online movies with captioning. Thank you hulu.com and hope to see more upcoming captioned online movies.

As a matter of fact, I don’t want to be bothered with Netflix, Blockbuster and others like Hollywood. I had encouraged my family and friends not to subscribe to these and any TV providers that offer VOD.  The fees are ridiculously too high as I had noticed they kept increasing fees to $5.99 per rental for one day, as same with DirecTV that offers $4.99 pay-per-view (PPV). I bet that most movies are not captioned no matter you have to  figure out whether it is captioned or not. I dread being one of frustrated people when finding out the movie is non-captioned in spite of what advertising sometimes claims false about available captioning or SDH.  Of course we have to drag ourselves on extra mile by bringing the stinking DVD back to the store for credit or have to argue if the store refuses to yield. This is one of rewinding and replaying our bold actions but unfortunately we have our custom of these, we are being tired of being only ones to fight back –  as we rarely set back and are contented.

Since 1980s I have not been to the movie theaters except ASL films at the deaf clubs. I feel good about it as I don’t support the fat dirty Hollywood cats who make profit. They don’t respect in good moral and show very poor fair governance.

I couldn’t believe some bloggers like “Got Shares?” keep saying “hearing impaired (HI)”.  No, No, No, it is improper wording. It should be changed to D/deaf and hard of hearing.

Come on, some bloggers, you forget about captioning that can benefit everyone, not only deaf and hard of hearing people, especially seniors, children, foreigners who want to improve reading skills and people who prefer non audio.

I am shocked that one blogger had suggested why not hiring people from India to work in the area of captioning. No way! I have high respect for Indian people but they interpret very differently than Americans. Their English grammar sometimes make no sense to some Americans like myself who read some DVDs with subtitled for Deaf and Hard of Hearing (SDH) and don’t understand the whole concept of the movie plot because of wrong side of English interpretation by Indian people. Very poor job and stinky quality of captioning (sic).

Hearing people, please join us to boycott against Netflix, Blockbuster, movie theaters, and especially Hollywood media people. Please don’t subscribe and let’s quit from any subscriptions until they must listen to us by adding more and more captioning. Better make it high quality of captioning or SDH, all online movies be captioned.

I am kindly conservative but we would express our compliments to hulu.com for its persistance to add captioning and same with CNET.com. Hope to see both wonderful companies to increase online videos with captioning. Thank you, Hulu.com and CNET.com!

Closed Captioning Woes

Posted on | May 18, 2009 | 1 Comment

No matter, you and I are not satisfied with almost all TV programmings due to poor quality of Closed Captioning (CC). Poor one gal, she asked whether we had similar cc problem on Medium by NBC. As a matter of fact, I had no problem with Medium episodes and however, it looked like it was a local TV station problem, not national wide.  Besides, she hoped to catch up one episode of Medium at Hulu.com, but she had no luck when we knew that NBC is stubbornly not releasing its ownership of episodes to Hulu.com or cc is not available.  That is frustrating! We sometimes had to miss some or few episodes of our favorite TV programming due to unforeseen conditions.

I like to compliment Communication Services for the Deaf (CSD)  to bring Digital TV web site solely for Deaf and hard of hearing consumers for their great job but they received the grant from FCC and had to do it anyway. Here is the CSD DTV web site.  Please be encouraged to fill out the survey about cc and visit there for more information. One disappointment is that CSD DTV did not provide their videos or link for sharing with other websites, blogs or social networks. They did not endorse this part as very important part for everyone to spread the word as far away as possible across the country. I tried sending this suggestion to them twice but they seemed not to understand or to be uninterested about our suggestions. They should know better to include their video clips at You Tube, Google Video, Vimeo or others whatever they can as many as they should share information.

One guy asked about a converter box as though he has his new HD LCD 55 inch TV and subscribes to the cable provider. He thought he needed it because of DTV urgency but I had advised him not to worry about it as though I advised him to contact CSD DTV for any further help. I believe some deaf people are confused with DTV converter box and DVR/HDVR receiver box.

Will cc work fine with HD TV programming? Strangely cc is noticeably missing, lagging in time and disappearing during HD TV programming series but cc works beautifully on standard TV programming series. What is the difference? Obviously it is due to the conflict between E608 and E708. I am unsure why it had happened often but will there be any excuse for TV stations to get away with poor CC or no CC if broadcasting HD?

Lastly, I am puzzled to learn that some sponsors began dropping out from several TV stations like CBS, NBC and ABC for adding closed captioning on some TV programmings including local news. Is it true about losing sponsors and so we will not be able to watch cc anymore? Several captioners had forewarned us about this possibility.

I will continue sending complaints to FCC about CC and hope so you will join by sending out your complaints.

CMS Too Difficulty for Web Admin Novice

Posted on | May 6, 2009 | No Comments

As I was trying to train some people on how to maintain or update their own web sites I found this basic training too consuming and distraction. CMS refers to Content Management System. Depending on the specifications of web site design CMS is built in with the administration access. Some sites are not built in with the administration access but these require FTP access instead. FTP access refers to any type of software, free or cost such as FileZilla.

Some wrong assumptions by some customers are as follows:

  • Web site design is very easy to learn in similar to the usage of email.
  • Web site template is free but very limited and infeasible for any changes to suit own preference.
  • Web site is equivalent to “web page”.
  • Web design could be done by “anyone”.
  • There is no need for web design expertise.
  • Cost for setting up, designing and incorporating a new web site should be lower than $500 or free.
  • Domain name registration is confusing and misunderstanding.
  • Hosting server is not fully understood and unfamiliar.

As you can see more than such claims above, I had received some replies from both new and former customers about my web design business. Sometimes I found their responses offensive and lack of respect for my career. Some had stated that web design was nothing important and not a big deal as they could not realize what takes very tough job to work in the web development. The Internet keeps changing and growing over 400% as though most web designers and developers like myself have the responsibility to know how to stay in practice and keep up with web programming on up-to-date basis.

For example, we have the ability to read and change HTML codes, plus Flash, AJAX, PHP programming or others in order to make a web site look sharp and running properly on the Internet. We should test every browser to enable the web site running smoothly such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Safari. In addition, we are required to verify the layout of web site to suit the monitor screen such as resolution.  There is no limit to go on and further work on just one web site, no matter, what is involved. Sometimes it takes more than two months to complete one web site. If information and layout are provided as ready on hand it may normally take an average of two or four weeks.

Every web site is unique and different, not the same to each other. However, free web template of course looks too similar and commercial.  If preferring a free web template then we have to be careful with its copyright or intellectual property rights.

Sadly, more and more web templates are growing popular on the Internet. I am very concerned about freedom of web artworks and the right to design whatever you like to.  Noticeably the web templates are easy for anyone to steal at no cost, and play smart as if he or she thinks too good as web designer. It is nice to own one web template just not because of free lunch and timing issue but lazy to be creative and have the challenge to create the best web site.

One reason is for CMS as necessary for some people that I offer Joomla, WordPress or Drupal in hope that it is easier for them to access and do whatever they like.  With my regrets my guess is wrong as I had discovered some people who have no computer skills, or unfamiliar with web design they are hesitant to access to the administration or dashboard. They asked for me to help train them as I had some patience and willing to help them until I did not see any further improvement or action they should take on own in next step.

Right now I am not sure how to help them but I begin thinking more likely that the web design is too complicated and high tech today than a few years ago because of fast-paced growth and new web mechansims.

Déjà vu about PC game, Demigod

Posted on | April 24, 2009 | 1 Comment

As my son begged me to purchase another PC game, I had an instinct about possibly of something in similar to Spore and however, I went along to acquire it for his sake.

Guess what?  My instinct was right about déjà vu on installation problem. Demigod is in conjunction with its major game publisher, Stardock. Same with Spore in conjunction with Electronics Arts (EA).

My son was excited and asked me if he could go ahead to install it by himself. I don’t mind to let him do it but I am concerned about some unforeseen situations that we may never know after trying to install. Somehow one downloading problem had appeared on the screen. Right away, I had to take over and install the CD rom but it would not allow me to proceed through.  The error message kept saying the memory is not sufficient. I was puzzled because of adequate memory space that this PC has about 60 GB.

In my mind I had suspected that something like game publisher prevents us independently to install indirectly or direct the game software without its permission. I had to browse and look for Stardock’s own software called Impulse. Once I found it as part of files on the CD rom I had installed Impulse in first step. As a result it had worked.

Interesting enough, Impulse had directed me toward Stardock’s web site to install Demigod from there, not CD rom. I thought it was pecular and ridiculous for game publisher to control whatever they wish rather than not allowing us to use the CD rom. Then I had typed in serial numbers from CD rom before downloading Demigod software.

Finally it was successful. I am not sure why necessary for any game publisher to control over software. Watch out Spore and Demigod, this method could be misleading and confusing for most of people who are unfamiliar with the computer.

Now my son is enjoying to play Demigod.

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