Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Family Friendly sites listed on Blackstump Australia Issue 29 - October 1, 2009

The latest issue of new family friendly sites listed on The Black Stump.
Blackstump Australia Issue 29 - October 1, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009

What Happens To Your Luggage Once It’s Checked In?

Travelling by air without checked luggage is often a sensible goal, but sometimes you have no choice but to stow your bags in the hold. What happens to them once you’ve handed them over to a hassled check-in clerk?
What Happens To Your Luggage Once It’s Checked In?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Lamest. Foodstuff Name. Ever.

They could have taken all sorts of inspiration for naming the “new” vegemite. They settled on a naming convention cornered by Apple. Lame. Seriously lame.
Lamest. Foodstuff Name. Ever.

Best Of The Best: Tools And Apps, Third Quarter 2009

From Lifehacker Australia. The third quarter of 2009 was filled with all sorts of useful communication tools, time saving applications and software to help you get things done. Here’s a look back at the winners in each of the categories.
Best Of The Best: Tools And Apps, Third Quarter 2009

Examine Hand Gestures and Smiles to Detect Lying

Some people are better liars than others. The next time you want to gauge whether someone's pulling your leg, try searching for clues based on their hand gestures and smile. It goes without saying that the following suggestions are not hard-and-fast rules, but more potential tip offs that someone may be fibbing.
Examine Hand Gestures and Smiles to Detect Lying

Banned Books Week

Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books.
Banned Books Week

Reclaiming the night sky: award-winning astrophotography

Iranian photographer Babak Tafreshi has won the 2009 Lennart Nilsson scientific photography prize. According to the award panel, his images "reclaim a night sky that most modern people have lost" – see some of them here.
Reclaiming the night sky: award-winning astrophotography

Tip of the week: How to best email your digital photos

Everyone at one time or another has received an email with a very large image file attached. It can be very annoying. I've even deleted some emails that were just way too big. Here's how to do away with the problem by reducing the size of your photos before you email them.
Tip of the week: How to best email your digital photos

How to Tell if You're Watching TV in HD

High Definition Television (HDTV) is a form of Digital Television capable of "near photo" quality images on an HDTV screen. Unsure if you're seeing an HDTV signal or not? Read on for help.How to Tell if You're Watching TV in HD

Knowing When to Walk Away: Financial Planning for an Unknown Ending

People somehow have a built upon a notion that they must amass a certain amount of money, no matter how long it takes, before they can retire. Yet, what if it took you 40 years of work to reach $1 million, and the very next year you died? Would all your work be for naught? It depends on how much you enjoyed your work, of course, but for the most part, this scenario is not ideal.
Knowing When to Walk Away: Financial Planning for an Unknown Ending

Friday, September 25, 2009

Cheap Passport Pictures

Below are four online passport photo companies, each offering varying levels of service (with corresponding costs).
Cheap Passport Pictures

The Best Online Tools for Families

It’s easy to feel absolultely overwhelmed when you look for a tool or useful website online. There are hundreds of choices, and sometimes, it feels like they’re all pretty similar. There’s a theory that in this age of information, our range of choices — from toothpaste flavors to online calendars — stress out our bodies and our minds to the point that we’re actually less able to make sound decisions.
The Best Online Tools for Families

USB Car Adapter Charges Any USB Device On-the-Go

The iLuv Micro USB Car adapter turns your car's cigarette outlet into a universal USB charger, so you don't have to buy specialized car chargers for all of your USB-chargeable gear.
USB Car Adapter Charges Any USB Device On-the-Go

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Australian Social Trends, Sep 2009

The September issue reveals that extra hours, multiple jobs and weekend work are all cutting into Australian family life, while one-quarter of our children are overweight or obese. People may also find it hard to balance employment and care, while Australia's links to China and India continue to grow through migration, trade and education.
Australian Social Trends, Sep 2009

Six Tips for Coping with the Fact that You've Forgotten Someone's Name

If you’re like me, you sometimes have trouble remembering people’s names, or even how you know them.
Six Tips for Coping with the Fact that You've Forgotten Someone's Name

5 Focus Killers … and How to Beat Them

It doesn’t matter how focused you are, working from your remote office likely entails more than a few distractions. For each of us those distractions will be different (I just had to break my morning’s work to move my goat to a new patch of grass; you may not have to cram this particular commitment into your schedule). And, truth be told, they’re not always unwelcome.
5 Focus Killers … and How to Beat Them

Dust storm chokes Sydney

Sydneysiders are being warned that a huge dust cloud will continue to affect the city through the day, after they woke to an eerie red dawn.
Dust storm chokes Sydney

Amazing video of girl barely missing an out-of-control car

A 6-year-old girl very narrowly misses getting squashed by an out of control car.
Amazing video of girl barely missing an out-of-control car

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

7 ways to fewer wrinkles

Some people are born lucky—but for the rest of us wrinkles are a natural part of aging.
7 ways to fewer wrinkles

Oxford English Dictionary Update

On 10 September 2009 the New Edition was updated with new materials which fall into three main categories: (a) alphabetical series of revised entries based around significant words from across the alphabet; (b) the sequence of revised entries from red to refulgent; (c) a series of new entries and senses from across the alphabet. The table below shows the ranges which were covered, together with some of the more notable entries within them.
Oxford English Dictionary Update

Directory Size Calculator

The best way to free up some hard drive space is to sort the files and folders of that hard drive by size. Windows Explorer is able to sort the files by size but not the folders. It is possible to get the folder size of one folder by right-clicking on that folder and selecting properties but that’s not practicable if there are more than a few on that drive.
Directory Size Calculator

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Last Words

Last week, reports of executions — one postponed in Ohio, one carried out in Texas — punctuated the news more frequently than usual. These reports prompted me to reflect on an archive of executed prisoners’ last words I found on the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Web site while researching parole terms. The archive’s earliest entry dates from Dec. 7, 1982; the most recent was added after Stephen Moody was executed on Wednesday by lethal injection for murder.
Last Words

Monday, September 21, 2009

Fastest PDF File Viewer

Adobe PDF is not the fastest pdf reader that is available these days even with programs like Adobe Reader Speedup which remove some of the unneeded features. There are quite a few popular alternatives like Foxit PDF Reader which provide a similar functionality but offer faster startup and loading times.
Fastest PDF File Viewer

How to Use a Dash in an English Sentence

Do you use a dash a lot? What about a hyphen? Many people can not tell the difference between them. Some people even think they are the same thing. If you are one of them, check this out and master the dash.
How to Use a Dash in an English Sentence

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Swine flu and a new age of social greetings

The swine flu pandemic has wreaked havoc on traditional greetings worldwide. France’s health ministry has recommended that countrymen avoid “la bise,” and Spain has reportedly recommended halting their “besos”—both are the traditional kisses on the cheeks.
Swine flu and a new age of social greetings

Saturday, September 19, 2009

How To Hang Artwork Easily & Precisely

Tutorial on how to hang artwork in a grid "easily and precisely".
How To Hang Artwork Easily

The Best Retirement Calculator - Ever

Have you seen the investment calculator on WolframAlpha? It's amazing. With a few simple inputs like portfolio starting value, age, and other values, you can get a huge amount of data crunching power at your finger tips.
The Best Retirement Calculator - Ever

How to Sample Wine Without Looking like a Clown

Here's some more unpretentious wine instruction from Kathryn Borel Jr.
How to Sample Wine Without Looking like a Clown

Moon is coldest known place in the solar system

Poor Pluto. First it gets kicked out of the planet club, now it's not even the coldest place in the solar system. Dark craters near the moon's south pole have snatched that title – which is good news for the prospects of finding water ice on Earth's companion.
Moon is coldest known place in the solar system

Family Friendly sites listed on Blackstump Australia Issue 28 - September 19, 2009

The latest issue of new family friendly sites listed on The Black Stump.
Family Friendly sites listed on Blackstump Australia Issue 28 - September 19, 2009

Beatles remasters: the Metzger review

The definitive review on the recently-released Beatles remasters.
Beatles remasters: the Metzger review

Friday, September 18, 2009

Unclog a Toilet with Dishwasher Detergent

It's not a clever hack any of us want to have to use, but the Art of Manliness blog has a homebrew fix for the next time your restroom trip ends in disaster.
Unclog a Toilet with Dishwasher Detergent

How to Add 5 Consecutive Numbers Quickly

Bet someone you can add five consecutive numbers faster than they can. You can use this as a bar trick, with your friends, or (if you are a student) impress your teacher!
How to Add 5 Consecutive Numbers Quickly

Underwater Suffering: Do Fish Feel Pain?

Many a seafood fan has parroted the popular idea that fish and crustaceans do not feel pain. New research, however, suggests that they may, revealing that their nervous system may be more complex than we thought—and our own awareness of pain may be much more evolutionarily ancient than suspected.
Underwater Suffering: Do Fish Feel Pain?

Recovered meteorite points to an unusual origin

In 2007, a sky-watching program known as the Desert Fireball Network tracked a streak of light over Australia that led researchers to meteorite fragments on the ground. Through an analysis of its composition and orbital characteristics, the meteorite, known as Bunburra Rockhole, has revealed itself to be out of the ordinary.
Recovered meteorite points to an unusual origin

Thursday, September 17, 2009

After the big LA fires, terrain looks like a post-war moonscape: death, charred remains

We were escorted by LA County Sheriff's deputies. We were stunned by what we saw, and inattentive to keeping the little Flip video camera stable and accurately pointed. The devastation speaks for itself.
After the big LA fires, terrain looks like a post-war moonscape: death, charred remains

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Telstra Split 101

Yesterday’s announcement that Telstra will be forced to split its existing infrastructure business from the rest of the companyis going to be fodder for news journalists and communications junkies for months to come. But what difference will it make to the average Internet user?
The Telstra Split 101

"The Internet Is Both My Lifeline and the Plastic Bag Over My Head."

Manisha Alboher is a former financial analyst/portfolio manager (among other things) who writes and speaks a lot about personal money management. She wrote On My Own Two Feet and her next book, Get Financially Naked: How to Talk Money With Your Honey, is coming out in a few months. She also has a blog and often appears on TV to talk about money. The relationship between money and happiness is one of the most fascinating sub-topics within the large subject of happiness.
"The Internet Is Both My Lifeline and the Plastic Bag Over My Head."

Web Browsers Have Impact On Battery Life

A recent Anandtech study suggests that the web browser has an impact on a mobile PCs battery usage. The test, which analyzed battery performance under various popular web browsers and three websites, can probably not be seen as representative but it could indicate which web browser uses less battery power to operate. A test with more websites would certainly help to get a global result. Still, test results were somewhat surprisingly as the difference between the best and worst performing web browser were greater than two hours.
Web Browsers Have Impact On Battery Life

For Visual Searches, Try a Few Different Approaches

Microsoft has announced a new feature in its Bing search engine, focused on visual searches. Like some of the dedicated visual search engines, it presents a way to do web searches by clicking through collected visual images, instead of entering keywords. Initially, it’s only available for certain types of search categories.
For Visual Searches, Try a Few Different Approaches

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Google Maps adds Traffic Information

Google Maps has just activated real time traffic information to its maps. Information is taken from Intelematics, which you may recognise as the company behind the SUNA live GPS system that provides real time traffic information to GPS units through a discrete FM radio signal. The breadth of coverage around Melbourne is staggering and Google plans to further expand traffic information by transmitting anonymous speed readings from those using the mobile version of the Google Maps Application.
Google Maps adds Traffic Information

Monday, September 14, 2009

Internet Activity, Australia, Jun 2009

The Internet Activity Survey (IAS) collects details on aspects of internet access services provided by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in Australia.
Internet Activity, Australia, Jun 2009

Sunday, September 13, 2009

7 Ways to Reuse a Banana Peel

To be honest, the only things we’ve ever thought banana peels were good for were to fill the compost and to make people fall. Then we came across these genius ways to reuse the slippery guys…
7 Ways to Reuse a Banana Peel

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Photos of NYC in the 1940s

Here's a LIFE gallery of remarkable shots from NYC in its Golden Age, the 1940s, in celebration of the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson first sailing up the river that bears his name, past the island that would be Manhattan. The Forties' art, music, sports, finance, technology -- what a time it was.
Photos of NYC in the 1940s

Foods To Help Fight Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer kills an estimated 3000 men in Australia each year. The undignified means of diagnosis is arguably a factor, but there’s nothing inelegant about a suggested diet to help ward off the disease. UK scientist Professor Margaret Rayman has co-ordinated a recipe book (the imaginatively titled Prostate Care Cookbook) which contains recipes said to help reduce the risk of prostate cancer.
Foods To Help Fight Prostate Cancer

“Should I Buy It?” Flowchart Helps You Make Smarter Purchases

Advertisers would have us believe that we need a lot of things that we really only want, and that brand names are always better. This simple purchasing flowchart walks you through your purchasing decision-making process to help you make the smart choice.
“Should I Buy It?” Flowchart Helps You Make Smarter Purchases

Remembering 9/11 Through Social Media

September 11 - The eight-year anniversary of the shocking 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon building in Washington, DC, and the crash of United Airlines flight 93 in rural Pennsylvania. In 2001, social media was just in its infancy, but now that people have such an easily accessible global outlet to share their memories, grief, anger, frustrations, and pain, social web sites are being used as gathering places for those remembering the September 11th attacks.
Remembering 9/11 Through Social Media

Friday, September 11, 2009

12 Clever Substitutions That Save Money (Nearly) Effortlessly

One of my favorite ways to trim money from my spending is to find simple little substitutes for my regular expenses. If I can trim a few bucks from the cost of household supplies, routine purchases, and other things like that, over the long run, that can add up to a lot of money with virtually no change in my life. Here are twelve of my favorites (not including my “infamous” homemade laundry detergent).
12 Clever Substitutions That Save Money (Nearly) Effortlessly

Install iTunes Without Unnecessary Software

Apple has just released iTunes 9 and the web is full of reviews that compare the new version to previous ones and outline the changes and new additions that Apple has packed into the new version of their popular music management software. The new version does not offer that many new features but most users would probably like to update their old version of iTunes anyway. Something that has not changed is the inclusion of many additional software programs and services that many users consider unnecessary. These software programs include the Bonjour service, Apple Quicktime, MobileMe support or the iTunesHelper and iPodService startup processes.
Install iTunes Without Unnecessary Software

Speak Up To Look Smarter Than You Are

Although you may have committed yourself to keeping your mouth shut unless you absolutely had something critical to add to a business meeting, you may be doing yourself a disservice. Frequent talkers are perceived as more intelligent and competent.
Speak Up To Look Smarter Than You Are

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Make Your Computer Faster Instead of Buying a New One

Buying a new computer can be a very exciting time...until you get the bill. What most people don't realize is that you don't need a Quad Core chip for email and Internet browsing. But after you've had your computer for a while and it starts to get sluggish, a lot of people start thinking that a fancy, new machine will cure what ails them.
Make Your Computer Faster Instead of Buying a New One

MythBusters: 'Using your head is a lot of fun'

Can a lead balloon fly? Can tooth fillings pick up radio stations? Each week millions watch Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman, aka the MythBusters, test urban legends on their Discovery Channel TV show. Peter Aldhous joined them on set in San Francisco to find out how these special-effects wizards became standard-bearers for TV science.
MythBusters: 'Using your head is a lot of fun'

The big day for Beatles fans: A primer

Today’s the day the Beatles Rock Band music game, along with remastered versions of their albums, becomes available. Curious about these launches, but haven’t had time to get up to speed on them?
The big day for Beatles fans: A primer

Apple Announces iTunes 9

Today is Apple’s Rock and Roll keynote, where the company is expected to announce a range of new products and software upgrades. One of new products has leaked a little early though: iTunes 9.
Apple Announces iTunes 9

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

New look at Alzheimer's could revolutionise treatment

GENES that increase the risk of Alzheimer's and a blood protein that speeds up cognitive decline are radically changing our view of the devastating illness. Reported this week, both findings suggest new causes for Alzheimer's, boosting prospects for its treatment and prevention. "What we've found is absolutely fascinating, and will change the course of research into Alzheimer's".
New look at Alzheimer's could revolutionise treatment

Gone Phishing: How To Avoid Being Caught By Scammers

“Phishing” is the process by which a criminal disguises himself as a trusted entity in order to fraudulently obtain sensitive information. Although phishing can occur in many forms, the most common of these attacks involves the creation of an e-mail, one which prompts the recipient to enter specific personal information. This allows the criminal to “catch” the resulting data.
Gone Phishing: How To Avoid Being Caught By Scammers

"Up To" and Other Common Car Dealer Phrases to Watch For

Car dealerships have cultivated countless ways to take you for a ride (pun intended). Foremost among them: the use of industry-specific jargon. Consumer-focused automotive web site Edmunds takes a look at common linguistic lies.
"Up To" and Other Common Car Dealer Phrases to Watch For

How to Speed Up a Slow Windows Computer for Free: 11 steps

Windows PCs typically slow down as applications are installed and used. Each application increases the size of the Windows Registry file resulting in increasing the amount of time for the file to be processed and loaded. Whether using word processing, spreadsheets, internet, games or anything else, hard drives fill with temporary files that do not always get removed when no longer needed. Read on to learn of ways to help keep a PC running smoothly with little or no money.
How to Speed Up a Slow Windows Computer for Free: 11 steps

19 Free Web Services That Keep Saving You Money

Sifting through all of the free sites and services available on the Web, you've probably come up with some favorites, such as instant messaging tools or video streaming sites like Hulu. Those are great, but what about freebies that displace something for which you usually pay?
19 Free Web Services That Keep Saving You Money

New genetic associations for Alzheimer's disease

The long and winding journey to the roots of Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of dementia, has turned up three new genetic clues—the first major ones in 15 years.
New genetic associations for Alzheimer's disease

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Family Friendly sites listed on Blackstump Australia Issue 27 - September 9, 2009

The latest issue of new family friendly sites listed on The Black Stump.
Family Friendly sites listed on Blackstump Australia Issue 27 - September 9, 2009

Monopoly City Streets: Google Launching Online Version of Monopoly

This could be very addictive: Google is teaming up with board game maker Hasbro to launch a Google Maps version of Monopoly. Monopoly City Streets, which launches Wednesday, allows users to compete in a live, worldwide version of the popular game, creating the biggest Monopoly tournament ever played.
Monopoly City Streets: Google Launching Online Version of Monopoly

Monday, September 07, 2009

What To Do With Kids’ Artwork

Every child is a prodigious Picasso. As parents, we have a difficult time knowing what to do with the plethora of masterpieces crafted by our children. If we toss them, we feel guilty, If we display them all, we might as well wallpaper our refrigerator.
What To Do With Kids’ Artwork

Eyes see trouble coming before brain notices

Not just a window to the soul, the eye has a few tricks of its own. Newly discovered eye cells can warn us that an object is coming nearer, and do so without the brain's help. This ability may have evolved to speed escape from predators.
Eyes see trouble coming before brain notices

Fold a World-Record-Setting Paper Airplane

A few years back we pointed you toward the world's "best" paper airplane, and while we couldn't entirely back up the "best" claim, this Sky King paper airplane is a legitimate world-record holder. This video shows us how to make it ourselves.
Fold a World-Record-Setting Paper Airplane

Friday, September 04, 2009

21 Ways to Reduce Your Spending Without Making Your Life Miserable

Given that everyone’s life is different, it’s hard to point to a list of things that’s guaranteed to not be boring for everyone. Simple Dollar have made a list of twenty one spending reducing suggestions that they felt either didn’t have any impact at all on quality of life (things you can do once and benefit from for a while) or, if they’re repeatable, are inherently fun.
21 Ways to Reduce Your Spending Without Making Your Life Miserable

Estimate Distances with Your Arm and This Rule of Thumb - measurements

Quick anatomy lesson: the distance between your eyes is one-tenth the length of your arm. This is important, because it helps you estimate the distance between yourself and any object of reasonably known size to a rather accurate degree.
Estimate Distances with Your Arm and This Rule of Thumb

Thursday, September 03, 2009

8 Things an Airline Would Never Tell You

Half-dozen insiders expose little-known facts the airline industry would rather you didn't think about. They shared some pretty eye-opening stuff.
8 Things an Airline Would Never Tell You

The Journalist's Guide to YouTube

When you think of YouTube (YouTube), you probably think of viral videos such as choreographed wedding procession dances and sneezing pandas. But YouTube’s content load is massive — 20 hours of video are uploaded every minute — and it has a lot more to offer than just silly, viral videos. One area of YouTube that is currently growing like a weed is news.
The Journalist's Guide to YouTube

WhatTheInternetKnowsAboutYou: your browser is giving away your history

The app is an example of using browser history detection to determine personal preferences of Web browser users and is located at http://whattheinternetknowsaboutyou.com. The history detection hack has been known for quite a while; it works by using the CSS :visited pseudoclass to style visited links differently from unvisited ones, in order to figure out which ones are present in the browser's history and does not require JavaScript.
WhatTheInternetKnowsAboutYou: your browser is giving away your history

13 more things that don't make sense

Strive as we might to make sense of the world, there are mysteries that still confound us. Here are thirteen of the most perplexing. Cracking any one of them could yield profound truths.
13 more things that don't make sense

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Mandatory filtering plan an ‘ultimate embarrassment’

The Rudd Government plan to introduce mandatory ISP-level filtering was dead in the water and Communications Minister Stephen Conroy should end the farce now, the Opposition’s leader in the Senate Nick Minchin said.
Mandatory filtering plan an ‘ultimate embarrassment’

Some Thoughts on Building a Successful Friendship

What do you do after you’ve met someone and you want to actually build a lasting friendship? Lasting friendships are often the backbone of our social lives and help us in countless ways throughout our professional and personal lives. They come through for us when we need help, plus they provide the constant support and companionship that a friendship can provide.
Some Thoughts on Building a Successful Friendship

Best Disk Defragmenter: Defraggler

At the top of the heap is Defraggler, followed by a neck-and-neck—less than a percentage point difference—race for second and third place for Auslogics Disk Defrag and MyDefrag, respectively.
Best Disk Defragmenter: Defraggler

What Is It Like to Be a Baby?

Alison Gopnik is a psychologist and philosopher at the University of California, Berkeley. She's also the author of the newly released book The Philosophical Baby, which explores the inner world of young children. Mind Matters editor Jonah Lehrer chats with Gopnik about why babies might be more conscious than adults, the benefits of having an imaginary friend and why play, not necessity, is the mother of invention.
What Is It Like to Be a Baby?

Best visions of the night sky

Star trails, horse heads and shadowy moons are some of the sights captured by stargazers across the world vying for the title of Astronomy Photographer of the Year.
Best visions of the night sky

How to Determine Your Blood Type

Want to know your blood type? If you ever need to know, medical staff can determine it on the spot, but maybe you're just curious. Maybe you want to know what your blood type says about your personality.[1] Either way, there are actually several ways to go about finding out.
How to Determine Your Blood Type

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Computer Repair Flowcharts

Diagnosing computer problems can be a very time consuming process especially for computer users who have no or only basic computer repair process. These users only have a few options left if their computer system fails. One being to ask a proficient friend or colleague. The other option is to pay for professional computer repair which can be costly and time consuming depending where the computer system was bought and where it should be repaired.
Computer Repair Flowcharts

The Los Angeles fires

Video: Time Lapse Test: Station Fire, a haunting little piece put together by Eric Speigelman. The "Station Fire" has now spread to nearly 100,000 acres. Fires are a predictable, seasonal, and natural aspect of ecology and life in Southern California.
The Los Angeles fires