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Mileage Converter

Howdy folks! Recently I started to re-dable (now that’s a funny word, if in fact it is a real word) with BASIC programming. Programming in BASIC, for me, goes all the way back to being twelve to fourteen years old, somewhere in the early 80’s. That’s when the Apple ][+ ruled the personal computer world!

I found an App for iOS, Misoft Basic!, that purported to be an Apple staff favourite for its nostalgic feel, much like the old AppleSoft BASIC of the day. My father thought it would be fun to try some programming again and suggested we work together on a mileage converter. I agreed but went a little overboard and wrote the whole thing one afternoon. So, after cutting my dad out of the fun, he is taking it a step further and is giving it a graphical interface, as opposed to my purely text offering.

I am including the code to what I’ve written so far if you’d like to try it out. Be aware that not all versions of BASIC use exactly the same syntax or commands but if your willing to give this a go, you probably already know that.

10 Rem Convert l/100 to us & imp and back
12 REM by Wayne Goldsmith
13 CLS
15 PRINT “*******************************”
20 PRINT “Welcome to the Multi-Mileage Converter.”
30 PRINT “*******************************”
35 PRINT
40 PRINT ” 1) L/100 to Imperial MPG”
45 PRINT ” 2) Imperial MPG to L/100″
50 PRINT ” 3) L/100 to US MPG”
55 PRINT ” 4) US MPG to L/100″
57 PRINT ” 5) End”
60 PRINT
65 INPUT “Pleas enter you choice… “;c
70 IF c=1 THEN
GOSUB 135
ELSE
IF c=2 THEN
GOSUB 180
ELSE
IF c=3 THEN
GOSUB 250
ELSE
IF c=4 THEN
GOSUB 320
ELSE
IF c=5 THEN
GOSUB 400
END IF
END IF
END IF
END IF
END IF

GOTO 13

135 REM l/100 to imp mpg
136 PRINT
140 INPUT “Please enter your L/100 to IMP MPG you would like to convert. “;l
150 mpg=282.48/l
155 PRINT
157 PRINT
160 PRINT “Your L/100 figure works out to “mpg” Miles Per Gallon!”
165 PRINT
166 PRINT
168 GOSUB 450
170 RETURN

180 REM imp mpg to l/100
181 PRINT
190 INPUT “Please enter the Imperial MPG you would like to convert to L/100… “;mpg
200 l=282.48/mpg
210 PRINT
220 PRINT
230 PRINT “Your Imperial MPG figure works out to “l “L/100. ”
235 PRINT
236 PRINT
238 GOSUB 450
240 RETURN

250 REM l/100 to us mpg
251 PRINT
260 INPUT “Please enter the L/100 figure you would like to convert to US MPG… “;l
270 mpg=235.2/l
280 PRINT
290 PRINT
300 PRINT “Your L/100 figure works out to “mpg” US Miles Per Gallon!”
305 PRINT
306 PRINT
308 GOSUB 450
310 RETURN

320 REM US MPG to L/100
321 PRINT
330 INPUT “Please enter the US MPG figure you would like to convert to L/100…. “;mpg
340 l=235.2/mpg
350 PRINT
360 PRINT
370 PRINT “Your US MPG figure works out to “l “L/100.”
375 PRINT
376 PRINT
378 GOSUB 450
380 RETURN

390 GOTO 20

400 PRINT
410 PRINT ” Thank you for using The Multi-Mileage Converter.”
420 END

450 INPUT “Press ‘C’ to continue, or ‘Q’ to quit.”;d$
460 IF d$=”c” THEN
RETURN
ELSE
IF d$=”q” THEN
GOTO 400
ELSE
GOTO 450
ENDIF
ENDIF

Internet Trolls

If you have more than scratched the surface of the internet, you’ve seen evidence of the passage of internet trolls. They lurk in online forums, chat rooms, and blog comment sections waiting to drop their bomb and move back into the shadows to watch the fun.

internet trollWikipedia defines the internet troll as a person who sows discord on the internet by starting arguments or otherwise upsetting people by posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off topic messages. Their deliberate intent is to provoke readers into making an emotional response. Trolls love this sort of thing, it’s actually entertainment for them. Sadly most people don’t realize they are being manipulated, making it all the easier for the troll to get things started.

A Canadian study conducted by the University of Manitoba, the University of Winnipeg, and University of British Columbia researchers concluded online trolls were akin to “prototypical everyday sadists”, as reported by Doug Cross of CNN. Sadism is the tendency to take pleasure in other people’s pain or discomfort.

A troll’s efforts will be more successful depending on the maturity of the audience. Maturity does not necessarily equate to age when we consider it is adults who make Gerry Springer and his ilk successful. Your children may be the unwitting victims of the trolls if they frequent online community pages. They don’t have the emotional maturity to refrain from taking part in the online battles raging on their screens.

The best way to shut down a troll of course is not responding to their inane comments, but most people can not help themselves, they wade right in, with gusto. So, it begs the question, if these trolls are truly sadists, does that make the rest of us a little masochistic for enabling them?

 

*Masochistic – The deriving of pleasure, or the tendency to derive pleasure, from being humiliated or mistreated, either by another or by oneself.

War Thunder Update Issues

The other day I went to play War Thunder and the launcher required an update to the game to proceed.  I naturally agreed whole-heartedly, without reservation, and let things happen.

Getting towards the end of the process, an error message pops up, saying that I did not have the required permissions to perform certain actions, actions that were never defined.

In the end, I allowed full control over the whole War Thunder folder, and it’s contents, and that solved the issue.  If you have the time, you could add Full Control to each user or group attached to the folder (Possibly ‘Trusted Installer’ would actually save the day) one at a time to see which is the user/group that needs the access to the War Thunder folder.

November Service Special!!

Does your computer need a tune-up?
Whip it into shape with our November Service Special!!

We will:

install all applicable Windows Updates.
Install our Essential Utility Kit (to help keep your computer clean).
Examine and correct Hard Drive health issues.
Scan for and remove any instances of Viruses and Malware.
Recover any available Hard Drive space.
Scan and Repair Registry errors.

A complete tune-up, all for $ 50.00!

CALL GOLDTEK TODAY @ 250 485-7146

FOR SALE – ASUS eeePC Netbook – $99.99

FOR SALE

ASUS eeePC Netbook – $99.99

 

photo 1-2 photo 2-2

 

This netbook has been refurbished and has a fresh install of xUbuntu Linux.  In excellent overall condition with minor signs of wear.  Battery holds a good charge.  This netbook is the ultimate in portability, take it anywhere!

Pre-Installed Software

Pre-installed software includes Firefox web browser, Thunderbird email, plus a full load-out of included Linux apps.

Manufacturer ASUS
Model name eee pc 701
Model id 701
CPU type Intel Celeron-M
CPU speed 900 Mhz
Graphics Intel GMA 900
OS xUbuntu Linux
Display Size 7.0″ 800 X 480
RAM 512 MB
Flash 3.9 GB
Battery capacity 37 (Wh)
Battery Life 3.4 – 4.1 hours
Weight 920gm / 32.5 oz.
Size (w/h/d mm) 225/165/35 mm
Size (w/h/d inches) 8.9/6.5/1.4

AC Adapter Included.

CALL GoldTek at 250 485-7146

 

Open Request to any and all PC Diagnostic Utility software makers.

Dear sirs!  You know what I want?  I want PC diagnostic utilities that I can run from my iOS device such as my iPhone or iPad.  I envision connecting to the PC via a USB port and proceeding to scan the drive and repair file structure damage ala chkdsk, defrag, scan for viruses and malware, disk file cleanup and registry cleaning and defrag, and navigate in the file system.  What a boon for tech’s doing PC repair like myself!!

Moving Mail Across Windows Versions

Recently I was helping a client move their data from their old Windows XP machine to a new Windows 7 unit.  They were concerned about changes in the mail program that Windows 7 provides compared to their old Outlook Express.  They asked if Mozilla Thunderbird would be a good equivalent mail client, which I assured them it would be.  Better in fact.

If you’ve ever tried to get your new installation of Thunderbird in your new computer to pickup all account settings, mail and address books from the old Outlook Express on the old hard drive, you know that can be problematic.  An easy solution is to install Thunderbird first on the old computer, and have it import all account settings, mail, address books, etc. from Outlook Express.

Then, when i connect the old hard drive to the new computer to copy the users documents and other data, I simply replace the Thunderbird folder in the new computer located at C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming with the Thunderbird folder from the old C: drive, which in XP is located in C:\Documents and Settings\UserName\Application Data.

Works like a charm!

Should I Buy a New Computer?

I am asked this question all the time. The simple answer is No.

Does your computer do everything you need it to do? Is it holding you back in some way? Most of the time, the things about your computer that keep you from enjoying it are that is has slowed down, or it crashes often, or has in some way become unreliable. Most of the time.

Almost any computer sold within the last 3-5 years has more than enough performance to keep the average consumer happy. But, people tend to think that the computer itself, the hardware, has somehow degraded over the course of their ownership. Most of the time, this is not the case. Most of the time, what is making it unreliable is malware infesting your computer, serious file fragmentation on the hard drive, or other hard drive file system errors. This can usually be cleaned up, and your speed and reliability restored. Compared to these problems, hardware issues are relatively uncommon.

If you hire someone to do this job for you, the cost will be a fraction of the cost of a new machine. At this point, if you run your two favorite security programs every week, your computer will stay cleaner longer, helping you to avoid the cost of a professional to clean it up for you.

Some people need the highest performance in a computer, so upgrading more often is definitely reasonable for them. Others have held onto their computer for so long that they can’t get updated software for it, which is also a good reason to upgrade. Some people just want a new computer, and no reasoning will dissuade them. Nothing wrong with that either.

So, should you buy a new computer?

Phishing

No doubt you’ve heard of this type of computer scam, but what is phishing?  In the computer world, phishing is email sent to you by criminals, which appear legitimate in a vague sort of way, but with very specific consequences to you if you are duped by them.

An email lands in your inbox, and at first glance it appears to be legitimate.  Supposedly from FedEx, it says that your ebay.com purchase is being held at customs, please click here for details.  Or an email from XYZ Furniture, stating that your payment of $4096.69 has been processed successfully, thank you for your business.  Please click below to confirm your shipping details.  These emails are cunningly designed to illicit a quick reaction from you and almost without thinking, you click on the link.   At this point you are Alice tumbling down the rabbit hole.

If you are lucky, your security software will recognize the link and block you from connecting, but the sad truth is that the Phishermen change their emails many times a day and security companies often can not keep up with the changes.  What about your firewall, can’t that keep them out?  Well, if they were trying to connect to you, it probably would.  But, now that they are inside your computer, they get your computer to contact them.  Many consumer firewalls do not watch the outgoing traffic from your computer very closely.

So, what if my computer is now compromised?  The bad guys will have complete access to your computer in short order, and you won’t have seen anything untoward on your screen to alert you.  What do they want with you?  You are a very valuable commodity on the black market, or at least your identity and financial information is.  Also, having control of your computer lets the bad guys use it for other nefarious purposes.

The best way to avoid this fate is to be patient while you read your email.  At first glance these messages look legitimate, and, as you start to stress about the contents of the message, you look around desperately for a way out of this mess, and there it is, a link to all the answers,  if you just “click here”.

If, instead, you take a breath and look closely, you will begin to notice clues that there may be something phishy going on here.  The FedEx email has capthighliner@phishermanscove.com  as an email address, strangely not from someone at FedEx.com.  And the XYZ Furniture company?  Well, you’re pretty sure you didn’t order any new corinthian leather deck chairs, aren’t you?  If you are still concerned, don’t click their link, instead phone your credit card company and explain your concern, or your financial institution, they will be happy to look into your account for you.  Google up current phishing scams, chances are the ones you received will be listed there, and others you haven’t seen yet.  For-warned is for-armed, as they say.

And as always, scan your computer at least once a week with your two favourite security programs.  This will keep your Windows computer as clean as possible.

Auction Madness

You know the old saying, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Recently I happened upon an auction site called QuiBids.com, and I was amazed at the smoking good deals. How about an HP LA1951G 19” LCD monitor, brand new in the box, full warranty, for $ 6.41?  Yeah, that got my interest too.

So I investigated further, and found that in order to bid on something, you had to buy bids. Bids cost $0.60 each. Every time you click on a Bid Now button, your total of available bids goes down by one, the bid price of the object goes up $0.01 only, and a few more seconds are added to the auction clock.

It’s not always the same amount of time added either. After a certain number of bids, (and we don’t know how many bids it takes, QuiBids says it’s not the same for every auction) the timer will only reset to 15 seconds, and then 10 seconds some amount of bids after that. When the timer does finally expire, the last person to bid has the right to buy the item for the final auction price.

I quickly realized that for the person who really wants the afore mentioned HP monitor for a good deal, this could drive you crazy.  You click and you’re the high bidder, seconds later someone else clicks and they are the high bidder.  The clock runs out at what almost seems the whim of QuiBids.com, so the auction may not end until people either get such bad carpel tunnel that they can’t click anymore, run out of bids, or just get fed up with the process.  Meanwhile, the bids are being burned on this monitor.

Let me break down what’s happening here to show you why this company can afford to do this.  They walk downtown, or go online, an pay full retail for the HP LA1951G 19” monitor, which Amazon sells for $ 172.90 USD.  At the end of the auction, the price was $10.25, leaving an apparent loss to QuiBids.com of $162.65.  Seems like madness, I know. But don’t forget those bids you bought so you could participate in these “Start the Car!!!” type of deals.  They cost $0.60 each and increase the auction price by $0.01 as they are used.  This monitor has been bid up to $10.25 which means that it has been bid on 1,025 times.  At $0.60 per bid, that amounts to $615.00 spent via pre-purchased bids. Now we actually see an apparent gross profit on this item of $452.35 . All they have to do is keep desirable merchandise on their site and they are making money hand over fist.

After doing all this math, I felt like this was a shady business, I just couldn’t put my finger on why. I was forced to admit that their business model is actually very clever. Smart buyers, with some time on their hands, can get a decent deal on their merchandise, the company definitely makes money, who is the loser here?

All of us, one bid at a time, that’s who. They take a little, from a lot of people. You have been manipulated, by the lure of a great deal, into spending $0.60 per bid, and you keep bidding because if you lost that monitor for the cost of only one bid, you would be devastated, you might even think less of yourself, and you don’t want to feel that way.

So, in the end, I think the cost of those cheap items is ultimately too high.

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