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I upgraded the existing Linksys BEF-SR41 wired router to a Linksys WRT-54G to provide a "one-box" solution for a wireless Internet access for a laptop. I was after a highly capable router that can be a broadband login agent for most service login types, as well as providing wireless networking to current standards. This unit supported both goals and worked to expected standards for wireless routers. As well, I noticed that there was an interest by Linksys and others to keep the device to current expectations. This meant that the router hand newer firmware with newer functionality like quality-of-service setup, which I then upgraded it. It still works better under the new firmware. Also, as far as the radio aspect goes, it can work with aftermarket aerials and works on an aerial diversity mode with its twi aerials similar to what happens with car radios installed in luxury cars. This certainly works as a way to improve network performance for hte wireless segment. For the tweakers out there, the firmware source is dounloadable from the Linksys website and there are sites out there with aftermarket firmware for this unit. I would certainly recommend this unit to anyone who uses any broadband service, whether they are a beginner or a "Demon Tweeker". I often regard this router as the network "edge' equivalent of a Volkswagen Golf.
Since 2001, I had run BigPond Cable Internet and shared it into a computer network with 3-4 computers using Win98SE Internet Connection Sharing. It was terrible using ICS. I wouldn't be sure that, when I boot up my PC, ICS would work as it should or not. When it wouldn't work, it would dish out IP addresses, but wouldn't pass any traffic to the Internet. I often had to leave the computer up all the time and, if there was a power failure or a system crash while I was away, I would have to talk people through uninstalling and reinstalling ICS just to get it going. So I had to bite the bullet and have us buy a Linksys 4-port router which was going at a very cheap price of AUD $169. Once it arrived, it didn't take long to set it up. The only thing I had to do was flash up some special firmware for BigPond Cable's strange login and authentication arrangement, supply my login parameters and set the IP address and DHCP pool from Linksys' defaults to what I wanted as a standard for any small network that I set up. This was all done using an easy-to-use Web-based interface that is used to control the router. It certainly moves the data quickly to the Internet and has certainly taken a load off my mind regarding sharing my Internet connection, especially if there are people who aren't computer-literate. This unit is future proof because it supports UPnP for applications such as MSN Messenger / Windows Messenger and any DirectX 9-based network games. I would suggest to look towards implementing these routers in any small network like a home network
Due to the householders winning some money to put towards new appliances at a local appliance store, they thought it was time to replace our 8 year old AEG OKO-Lavamat washing machine which was worn out after doing many wash loads per day. We had looked over brochures and asked our washing-machine repairman what was the best front-loading machine for our situation and we agreed on the Whirlpool 8123 machine. Once it was installed, we found that it could deal with heavy workloads effectively. This machine is one of those with an electronic control system but you select the cycle using a knob rather than buttons. This means that there isn't a mechanical timer that is likely to fail under heavy use; and therefore there are more operational advantages over that method; like knowing how much time is left for the washload. One cycle that we found so useful for our situation was the "Rapid Plus" cycle that would be complete in 30-45 minutes. This came into its owne with a single mother who doesn't have her own washing machine (hers was stolen while it was in storage) because she comes around to our place and does her household washing with this machine. Another feature that she appreciates is the "time remaining" display that shows how much time is left on the cycle - this means she can reckon how much time she has until the clothes are ready to be picked up. Another feature that we appreciate is the 1400rpm spin speed which allows for quicker drying times for the clothes. This allows for quicker turnaround for clothes, especially if there is a big pileup of washing; which is of importance if the machine has to service two households. When you load or unload the machine, the doorway is just about as big as the inner drum. This allows you to load the machine more quickly and see any clothes that have clung to the drum after the spin cycle. As far as durability is concerned, I reckon that we will expec t at least 8-9 years of service out of the machine. I would certainly recommend this as a machine for use in large households or busy households.
Hi everyone! A good way to make sure that your smoke alarm works at its best at all times is to use lithium batteries. You may have to buy them from shops like Maplin, but they are designed for applications where very little power is drawn during most of the device's life but the device needs maximum power when it needs it. In most situations, the smoke alarms go for weeks on end without sounding, but if the battery is getting towards the end of its life, the unit may not work as it should. Also, a good idea is to encourage your DIY store to source lithium 9V batteries, in order to permit people to use them with their smoke alarms. With regards, Simon Mackay
In 1994, the people whom I live with decided to take the plunge for a decent-sized "main-room" TV set after watching TV for many years on a portable set. They are into B&O equipment and the local dealership was running a sale which they took advantage of. This meant that they bought a Beovision MX4000 "off the floor" at a cheaper price. This set was provided to us in a "plug and play" fashion -- already tuned and ready to go. Once we took it home, it was certainly a pleasure to watch. The set is designed to be controlled only by the remote control. This can be a boon at times whenever there are small children around who like to play with the buttons on a TV all the time and ruin the set. On the other hand, you can get stuck if you don't know where the remote control is. This remote control is a slender object that feels comfortably heavy and is meant to last. Everything is arranged in an order with the sources up top, the "navigate" arrow keys on the next level, a numeric keypad then buttons for adjusting the sound or picture and finally the "off" key and the "mute" key (used for muting out the ads) on the bottom row. There are extra keys for use if the TV is connected to a B&O audio system, and the same controller can be used to control recent-model B&O audio equipment. It can also control newer B&O video recorders. This is a way of allowing you to have the TV at its potential if you use any B&O "piece of art" as peripheral equipment. The picture and sound are really worth the expense. If there is pure white in the image, such as images of Internet pages shown as part of a news report, white paintwork on the set of a show, or white clothing worn by actors, the white doesn't glare. The set also caters for any viewing environment, whether it's daytime viewing on a sunny day; evening viewing in a room with lights that are switched on or nighttime viewi ng by making sure the image can be seen optimumly in all scenarios. This also leads to a less harsh picture which is easy on the eyes. The sound is a treat for the ears -- Hi-Fi sound rather than limited sound. This is because the sets are designed by a company who has had a long-standing hi-fi pedigree, especially wih loudspeaker design. These sets are worth spending the extra money on; and may lead you on to heading towards the B&O path.
One accessory that is very useful for all mobile phones is the desktop charging stand. These stands allow you to "dock" your phone into them in order to charge up its battery. Most of them have a second bay for you to charge a spare battery for your phone. All of them don't come with their own power supply; instead, you connect the battery charger that came with your phone to the charging stand in order to power it. They are a must if you ever buy a spare battery for your phone; or upgrade your phone to one that is "accessory-compatible" with one that you have upgraded from. It als avoids the need of you fumbling around to plug your phone's charger into your phone when you need to charge it up. This is also a boon for phones that use a charger that connects to the phone using a connector that has lugs on it that can easily break off;p or is very difficult to use. As well, the stand looks neater than a phone lying around on the bench, with its cable plugged in and connected to the mains. They can be regarded as a "home" for your phone when you are at home or work -- you know where it is at all times. The only problem with using a charging stand over direct connection is that there is one extra accessory to take with you when you traval.
I have seen some good paint jobs and some bad paint jobs. One hallmark of a good paint job is for fixtures not to be painted over. Some poorly-done paint jobs often end up with doors that have door handles and other fittings the same colour as the latest paint job. This often leads to hardware like bolts or letter boxes that is difficult to use. In some cases, you can't even work these items at all. As well, it would be very difficult to restore the fitting to its original finish. Even then, it may not be the same finish as it was. Another hallmark of a good paint job is a window or glass door that has no paint on the glass surface. This can be achieved by the painter lining the edges of the panes with masking tape. As has always been said, the poor paint jobs are often done in a lazy fashion.
I live in Australia but have come across this station via a couple who was travelling to the UK and they videoed their rental car's car radio's RDS features because I was interested in the RDS "smart-radio" concept. They happened to find their way onto this station, with the set showing HEART on its screen and it playing some music that interested me. I thought that this is the station to go for when in London; and had friends send back tapes of the station. These tapes certainly showed what the mix was and how the station was digging deep into the record library but also playing up-to-date stuff. This is a marked difference from what has happened in Australian metropolitan areas, especially Melbourne, where commercial "adult-contemporary" broadcasters work on narrow playlists and class themselves according to whether they play 60s-80s music (gold format) or 90s+ music (fresh mix format). Here, this station will run 70s, 80s, 90s and current music; and spread the mix of music throughout the playlist. This means that you may be able to hear that song that you loved, when you were a teenager; or associate with particular memories. The DJs are very lively in the way they present their shows. This music from this station covers those disco songs that mean flares and platform shoes, the "80s groove" stuff that ofteh played out of monstrous ghetto blasters; as well as the cream of recent stuff. At times, they even will play the original song as well as the cover version that was recorded by another artist later. A good example was Chaka Khan's "I'm Every Woman" - they had the original Chaka Khan version as well as the cover version that Whitney Houston released in 1993 for "The Bodyguard". This has even got me to buy more CDs of some of the artists like George Benson and Luther Vandross, for example. I would recommend this as a station to tune to if they are travelling to Greater London; and are interested in popular music from the 70s onwards.
Last year, a person whom I was giving plenty of computer assistance to was in the market for a scanner. I had done plenty of research on various scanners and found that the Canon scanners are worth specifying. I knew that they had a relatively-modern computer that was equipped with a USB port and I liked the way this scanner was able to work off one cable to the computer. The person whom I was providing computer assistance to thought about providing me with something as a thank-you for the work that I had put in; and agreed to buy me one. The mechanism that is built into this unit is very simple in concept -- one bar containing RGB LEDs to illuminate the work being scanned as well as the phototransistors needed to "see" the work and digitize it. This bar is dragged along the glass platen using a simple belt drive. This has allowed for a very slim unit which can be stored sideways or in a drawer when not in use. As well, the low-power design allows for the unit to be powered by the host computer or powered USB hub over the USB cable. It is also easy to use -- you can start a scanning job by pressing a button on the front of the unit. The bundled software (ScanGear) is limited to single-page fax and copy jobs; but I would recommend using the Imaging applet supplied free with Windows 98 or Me for scanning documents to disk or faxing multi-page originals. I also recommend it as a portable scanner for use with laptop computers -- big enough to fit into a laptop bag and needs only one lead to get it going. Being a flat-bed design, it can handle documents that may give most of the portable sheet-fed scanners touted for use with laptop computers trouble; like receipts printed on thermal paper or carbon-copy receipts, plastic or laminated cards such as ID cards; or bound documents like passports or airline tickets. This would benefit travellers who need to keep electronic copies of receipts or want an electronic copy of key trave l documents as a safety copy.
At the moment, I use MS Word 97 as my main word-processor, but, when I have used Word 2000, I have found it to be an easy-to-use successsor to Word 97. There are some features that I like in both the programs -- one is the Document Outline mode. This feature is one that would be a boon for anyone who intends to make a thesis, dissertation, sermon, report or any other long document. This allows you to work out the key topics in a document so you can make sure that you have your bases covered. The first step is to enter this mode then write out the heading, then the primary subheadings then, under each subheading, all of the lower headings. Then you go into normal mode and write your text. Another feature that Z admire is the "Auto-Correct" mode that handles most common spelling mistakes which can occur if you are prone to type too quickly. As well, the other so-called IntelliSense features such as automatic date insertion can help you in working on your documents easily. Also, I admire the "reduced-clutter" menu behaviours that help you to concentrate on what you want to do with the program. I would consider that MS Word is to be classed as a standard word-processor on Windows-based equipmemt. Also, I would recommend that users look into implementing the 80:20 provisions in their MS Office licence agreement and install this program on their laptop computers, especially if they write a lot of documents while travelling. But don't try to think of it as a desktop-publishing tool.
If you own a Somy MD Walkman player or recorder, it is still worth looking towards owning a Sony MD deck in the long term. This is important if you do a lot of compilation MDs, because they handle the editing much more easier than the portable recorders. The editing trick that you can perform with the deck is to chisel off any "dead air" at the start and end of tracks. This is done by "dividing" at the points where the music starts and stops, then erasing the silent spots at the start and end if the music. This is best done before you title the songs and move them around. This then means that you can have songs that blend into each other but still are able to search them out. Also, if you put a Sony MD Walkman into Shuffle-Repeat mode and play an MD which has been edited in this manner, the songs will appear to be one after another even though they are played in shuffle-play mode. This is because Sony makes use of the "read-ahead" buffer feature at all times that the MD Walkman is in use. Also the Sony MD car-audio equipment supports this style of playback; and I have heard that the Sony MDX-65 6-stack MD changer will maintain a seamless shuffle-play mode across all discs that are in the MD changer.
Although I haven't bought the deck myself, I have assessed it and find that it is another unit that Sony has provided for those of us who want value for money. I was involved in specifying an auto-reverse tape deck for our church to record services with and was wanting to push for this deck as the one to buy. It has all the basic features that a good cassette deck must have i.e. Dolby B&C noise reductionm, Dolby / B&O HX-Pro (which will lead to good-quality recordings), auto-reverse on both transports, AMS function for use in navigating pre-recorded musicassettes, high-speed dubbing amongst other things. I have handled the display sample unit abd found that it is built to last -- all the switches and knobs have a certain solid feel about them. Another thing I like about this unit is that a proper eject latch is used rather than one pressing on the cassette doors to open them which means that there is less likelihood for cassette doors to hang open through accidental opening. This deck is certainly worth it as an "all-rounder" deck; and I would certainly be involved in specifying this model or its successors.
How often do you end up draining your digital camera's batteries because you are downloading your images that you have taken? How often do the batteries in the camera die during an image download? It would be a good idea to make sure the camera's batteries are used just for taking photos and reviewing what you just took in the camera. This is achieved by using a card drive, also known as a card reader, with your computer to download the pictures off the camera's memory card. These computer-powered devices connect up to your computer using the USB port or the PCMCIA card slot and accept the memory card in their slot. Then you use your operating system's file-system methods to move the images from the card to your computer's hard disk. The download time is so quick that you won't even notice how long it took to move the files. Some devices are able to handle two or more different media types like CompactFlash and SmartMedia so you don't have to stick to a particular media type when you upgrade your digital camera or acquire another digital camera. When you travel, you only need to carry at the most one USB lead in order to hook the memory card drive to your notebook computer. As well, most of these drives don't take up much room in your gadget bag or computer case. Also they don't take much power out of your laptop computer's battery. IMHO, they are a "must-buy" for anyone who uses a digital camera. These readers will also encourage you to buy more memory cards so you can take more pictures without worrying about running out of "film". You will also want to buy high-capacity cards for the same reason.
This "piece of art" by B&O is certainly worth considering if you want a premium-level all-in-one sound system; after my experience with one that was bought recently by the people whom I live with. The presentation that it has is very inviting. For example, when you approach the system, the glass doors open like the automatic sliding doors at an office block or shop, to reveal the controls. Also, the system blends into your listening environment and is very subtle. To operate the basic functions, you just specify the source that you want to listen to and the system comes to life, playing that source. When you wish to turn it off, you just press the button marked with a red dot, which is referred to as the STANDBY button. It is also worth noting that, if you are playing a CD or tape and the system has come to the end of the CD or tape; it will shut down after half an hour after the music finishes unless you change or restart the music. This means that you can drift off to sleep to your favourite CD or tape without waking up to find that the system has been on all night. Recording is a very simple affair -- to start, you just press RECORD twice to get a recording underway. You would use PAUSE to pause the recording monentarily, then press RECORD to continue recording. There is a built-in timer which allows you to wake to a CD, tape or radio program; or set the system up to record a radio program. This can be hard to use and is worth using the manual to work through your first few timer programmings. Let's not forget about the sound -- it is certainly great! You have to use the system with B&O active speakers, which will most probably be sold as part of the package that you bought; but the sound is so clear. The remote control is very slim and has a comfortably heavy feel that says that it's built to last. It can be operated by one hand and has a tiny display to remind you what function yo u last selected. As for hooking up third-party sources to the system, B&O are still supporting the "old school" European methods by using multi-pin DIN connectors for their equipment. If you use most recent third-party equipment, you have to buy a DIN-RCA "breakout" cable and plug the DIN end into the Ouverture's AUX socket; with the RCA ends plugged into the third-party device. This socket is actually an input / output socket which is useful for hooking up devices that are capable of recording onto their own medium. You can opt to build a Beolink multi-room single-source audio distribution infrastructure around this unit. With this infrastructure, you can manage what is being played or recorded on the main unit from any other rooms that have a Beolink point of presence in them. Also, it integrates well with any newer B&O Beovision TV. It is a sound system worth considering if you can afford it! You will make a very sound investment with it providing many years of useful life and good quality sound.
Since May this year, I upgradeed my mobile phone to a Nokia 6210, mainly to he able to benefit from WAP. But this phone is, like all other Nokia phones, easy to use. It has a large high-contrast display which I find is important to me because of poor eyesight. The functions in the unit are intuitively organized and it is easy to know which main function you are on through the use of large icons. The keypad in this phone is very easy to work with one hand for a long time, which is an asset for sending and receiving SMS messages. The only problem at the moment is the CHARACTER mode selection, with the "caps-mode" display in an out-of-the-way corner which can make it easy to miss. When you change the character mode, the phone could flash a brief message according to what you selected, just like the way the Sony MDS-JE520 MiniDisc deck and other recent Sony MD decks flashes up a message when you change any mode. When in WAP mode, the green "call" key becomes the "go" button - a feature worth pointing out to WAP users. Another feature that I like is that the red "end-call" key is simply used as the "home" key that brings you out of any menu to the main screen. Another feature that I like about this phone is that Nokia have bothered to design it to work with any accessories used with the 5110, 6110 or other similar phones. This means that if you upgrade your phone from any of these models, you can use all the accessories, whether Nokia-supplied or generic-brand, that you used for your older model with it.