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Lighten Up 8 March 2002 Edition
Previous Edition

Million $ Ideas
At last, the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook are revealed for all to see!
Click To See
I'm running low on suggestions for the Lighten Up section again so keep sending in those crazy, funny or plain weird links.

The Turbo Fridge Defroster
Here's some home-grown Kiwi craziness from a guy who really knows how to save time when defrosting his fridge.

The Fish Bonker
No, we're not talking about another fish of the opposite gender -- this is a fisherman's friend.

When Good Tennants Go Bad
If you're the house-proud type then you probably don't want to look at these pictures -- they're bad, really bad.

Aardvark's Web-site Survey Service
If you're launching a new website, upgrading an existing one, or just frustrated that your web-presence isn't peforming as it should then maybe you need an Aardvark Site Survey. Read more...

We Are Half a Billion Strong
The online population has now hit half a billion people world-wide.

That's one awfully big crowd and, as I'm sure the spamware vendors will soon start telling us, a huge market for products and services sold online.

The surprising thing is however, that this half-billion figure is just eight percent of the world's total population. This must surely highlight the massive digital divide that has opened up between the haves and have-nots.

One statistic I'd like to see published is just what percentage of the world's total wealth is owned or controlled by that eight percent of the population. I'm sure this figure would send marketing executives all over the world into spasms of delight.

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Do You Need Two ISPs?
Most of us know (some learning from bitter experience) that when it comes to computers and data, it is not a good idea to put all your eggs in one basket.

It's a fact of life that software has bugs and hardware breaks -- so we usually protect ourselves by backing up our data onto CD or tape and making sure that the computers we buy can be readily repaired.

But what about our Internet connectivity? How many of those who rely on the Net for important business communications have gone to the trouble of organising backup connectivity I wonder?

Of course this week has provided a couple of timely reminders that no matter how big an ISP is, they can still suffer irritating outages. Telecom's DSL outages seemed to affect XTRA customers more than others and IHUG's little "oops" yesterday knocked thousands offline for several hours.

I suspect quite a few business now realise that it's well worthwhile to organise a backup account with another ISP "just in case." If a low-cost metered account is used then it might cost just a few cents a day to have alternative connectivity ready to go if your main supplier has an outage.

Don't forget that the phone service itself can (and from time to time) does fail -- so organising a data-connection for that flash new cellphone can be another great way of saving your bacon in an emergency.

Remember, the key to effective disaster recovery is to organise the backup systems *before* you need them.

Have your say.

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Security Alerts
Microsoft offers patch for Java software (CNet - 06/03/2002)

CERT Warns of Flaws In RADIUS Implementations (InternetNews - 6/03/2002)

Webmasters Urged To Plug PHP Security Hole NewsBytes - 27/02/2002)

MP3 Files Not Always Safe With Top Media Players (NewsBytes - 25/02/2002)

MS server bugs open the door to hackers (ZDNet - 12/02/2002)

Virus Alerts
Gibe worm poses as a Microsoft update (ZDNet - 6/03/2002)

German worm makes PCs kaput (The Reg - 20/02/2002)

New MSN Messenger Worm (NewsBytes - 14/02/2002)

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The Day's Top News
Open in New Window = open in new window
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Open in New Window Ihug knocked out by hardware fault
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Open in New Window Online pirates strike ARIA as record sales climb
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Open in New Window Java-based Passport: Contender or pretender?
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Open in New Window Boost for digital TV
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Open in New Window Invasion of the "Porn Nappers"
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Open in New Window Microsoft addresses Japan Xbox gripes
Microsoft stepped up its efforts Thursday to deal with an increasing number of customer complaints in Japan about scratched discs in its Xbox video game machine, offering to repair or replace any defective products...

Open in New Window Sony's PlayStation 2 Goes Online in Beta
Sony has announced that it plans to enable its U.S. users to play games online starting in August 2002. Company sources went on to say that Sony's PlayStation division has already commenced beta testing on the service...

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