Thursday, February 25, 2010

Finding Porn by Accident on Google

When I teach Google to my CIS 101 classes, I find that many people have never even noticed the "Advanced Search" option, which allows you to use more advanced options (such as how recently the site was updated).

Likewise, when searching for images, there is an option to allow you to change how images are filtered.  The default is for images to be filtered at a "Moderate" level, but you can switch this to more and less restrictive levels.  If you switch the filtering off, you get some interesting results, to say the least. (a Web site that may not be all that safe for work) had an article about this - they discuss nine seemingly innocent searches that end up with pornographic results on Google image search.

Read on unless you are easily offended.
Link to Cracked.Com Article

Monday, February 22, 2010

RIP Aquila Mouzone

One of my students from Passaic, Aquila Mouzone, passed away last week.  I have had former students die before, but this was especially sad because she was still in my class...I still had one of her tests to give back to her.  I went to the wake last evening, and it was so sad to see.  I am glad that the family had so much support.

RIP Aquila...

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Free Stuff Contest - $100 Google AdSense Credit

People always seem to wonder how Web sites make money.  Much like television, much of the money comes from advertising.  Large companies have enough staff to set up and maintain advertising relationships, but most small companies and one-person Web sites do not have the staff to do all that work.  This is an excellent way for people to make money on the Internet, without needing a huge infrastructure.

One of the companies that does this type of advertising is Google.  People who want to advertise with Google sign up through Google AdWords, and those advertisers pay for the services they want.

The other half of the equation is Google AdSense.  Google AdSense is the site where people who have content (bloggers, small Web sites, etc.) can sign up.  Google gives them the HTML code, and all the person needs to do is add that code to their site and ads show up.

Google, by being the "middle man", makes money connecting the two.

I participate in the Google AdSense system, in large part because when I teach these concepts, I can say that I know how to do them from experience.  I don't have the traffic to make any real money off of it.

Anyway, Google recently sent me a letter that included a free $100 worth of Google AdWords advertising credit.  I could advertise my blog, but I don't really see the sense in it, so I figured it might be nicer to give this advertising credit to someone who might actually have a use for it.  This credit starts losing value after 3/5/10 and expires completely on 3/31/10, so you have to sign  up and apply it to your account before that point.

This is open to students and non-students alike.  To enter, just email me and tell me why you want it.  Anyone with a Web site to advertise is eligible.

Since this is a limited time offer from Google, email me as soon as possible.    Again, all I want is to see it go to good use.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Using Technology to Save Money

Among other things, I like saving money.  I brought this up in both of my CIS 101 courses, but when I look to buy things, I use the Internet to help me find some deals.
For example, rather than simply going to Staples to buy something, I check prices online.  It's not worth my time to go visit 20 sites to get the best price, so my time is also a consideration.  The best solution is to use one of the sites that do the work for me.  Two such sites are and Google Products (formerly called Froogle).  Let's say I wanted toner for my home printer - a Samsung SCX 4100.  If I go to PriceGrabber, I see the price on Staples is $95.39.  However, if I were willing to go with another company, I could get it as low as $68.70.  Not bad for a few minutes work!  Now, in this case, the vendor with the low price is one I don't know, so I could also read merchant reviews on the site, and make a decision on how safe I want to be.

They also offer generic toner, so if I were willing to do that, I could get a generic cartridge for this device for $30.99.  That is a savings of almost $65 from the original retail price, if I am willing to go with a generic cartridge.  As a bonus, the retailer with the lowest price is one I am familiar with and one who has excellent reviews.  If I needed toner, I'd go with the generic cartridge for that price.

I used toner as an example here, but you can try anything and see the results...a Nintendo Wii...a Panasonic VIERA 50" Plasma LG Refrigerator...Acqua Di Gio Cologne...a Fellowes Intellishred SB-99Ci Shredder...Note that not everything on the site has multiple vendors listed, but it is a good site to do some initial research.  Remember - if there is a site you are not sure if you trust, read reviews, and feel free to make a decision from there.  These sites do not discriminate between big sites (Dell, Staples, etc) and small sites, so all will be listed.

There are other places I go for other deals, but if there is something specific I am looking for, I usually start on PriceGrabber or Froogle.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

PCCC Emergency Alert System

School was canceled today (Saturday 2/6) due to the predicted snow.  It's always interesting when they cancel school and that predicted snow never materializes.  I am reposting information about the school's emergency alert system, the "Panther Alert". 

Basically (and of course, this was partially in response to the shootings at Virginia Tech a few years back), the school has an automated system that will alert you to school closings and other emergencies via phone, email, and text. You can specify up to 6 phone numbers (cell, home, work), two email addresses, and a cell phone for text messages.

Link to Full Instructions

Short version of instructions: if you log in to your school portal account in Campus Cruiser, you would click on the tab at the top labeled "Panther Alert". Click on that. Log in using your school email address - and your student ID number.

PS - remember your email is - not

Monday, February 01, 2010

Ultimate Steal

Every semester, I try to bring this up in my classes.  Microsoft has made available a number of programs available at a low cost for students.

For example, the Microsoft Office 2007 Home Edition would cost you around $125 - $150 to purchase.  This would include Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.  However, as a student at certain schools, you are eligible to receive a copy of Office 2007 "Ultimate" for $59.95.  This version includes not only the programs listed above, but also Access and Publisher.  The nice part is that this is not only inexpensive, but also legal.  I can understand why people take a risk and download illegal software, but when you have the chance to legally acquire the software at this price, why take the risk?

They also have made available Windows 7 for $64.95. 

Note you will have to register with your school email address (  Also note that they don't mail you an installation CD - the install is done through the Internet.

Note that even though this is not a site, it does redirect there and I can confirm this is legitimate.