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May 30, 2006

Web Design in a Nutshell, 3rd Ed.

Web Design in a Nutshell 3rd3rd edition update: The third edition took a bigger leap from the second than the second took from the first. Web Design in a Nutshell, 3rd ed., comes with a greater focus on Web standards and cascading style sheets (CSS). In fact, the book opens with a chapter on Web standards, whereas it was merely a footnote in the previous edition.

Rather than a sole chapter on HTML, the markup chapter blends HTML and XHTML. The chapter comes with notes explaining the major differences between HTML and XHTML. The greater emphasis on XHTML ensures newer designers dive right into XHTML and improve their chances of designing standards compliant Web pages. Furthermore, the appendix includes HTML 4.01, XHTML 1.0 and 1.1, and CSS 2.1 references.

Permalink :: Tags: web_design web_standards book :: Category: Book Reviews - Tech :: Comments (0)

May 24, 2006

Rules and Resources for Puzzles, Card Games and Other Games

I played Casino, a card game, with my grandmother beginning as young as five or so. On Christmas Day, my family loves to play games and put together puzzles and I realized that my kids don’t know how to play card games like that or Gin. We just don’t take out the deck of cards as much as we used to as kids with all the entertainment we have today.

I couldn’t remember exactly how to play Casino, but my mom did. I also found the rules of the game at the Card Games Web Site where you can find rules for many card games. Here are other places to go.

Go here for Sudoku stuff.

Permalink :: Tags: games cards :: Category: Games :: Comments (0)

May 18, 2006

Free Online Courses for Many Topics

If I could, I’d take at least one class at all times. By now, I’d have two masters degrees and maybe even a PhD. Well, maybe not that. It’s a shame that online degrees didn’t exist when I was in college or was mostly by correspondence (snail mail). I took my first non-class course in high school in history. I completed all the assignments and mailed them back. Then I took the exams in the counselor’s office.

Online courses are a wonderful experience for me as I don’t miss a thing unless the institution uses online lectures through headsets. I’m glad I went to a traditional college and had the typical four year experience. But I don’t miss sitting through all those lectures where I was bored out of my mind because I couldn’t decipher a professor’s accent, mumbles, or fast-talk.

Every now and then I search the Web for online grad programs to see if anything new pops up that catches my eye. I’d love to apply for Texas Tech’s masters program in technical communications. Alas, I don’t have the time to devote to it as I have to make time for other things right now. But it’ll stay on my radar as my life won’t stay the same and opportunities will come.

Anyway, here are free online courses. Just because they’re free doesn’t mean they’re useless as you’ll see some have instructors and discussion forums. Online courses have the advantage of being available 24/7 so those with busy schedules can review the material any time that works.

Permalink :: Tags: education courses training online :: Category: Business :: Comments (0)

May 17, 2006

Word Resources

Whenever someone has a baby, I always ask how they came up with the baby’s name. Stories have ranged from fascinating to “just ‘cause” (we liked the name). Amazing how English words coming from 26 letters of the alphabet have led to unforgettable plays, poetry, fiction, non-fiction, songs, movies, and muscials. Even a simple letter, number, and symbol can have a lot of meanings. Witness the @ symbol.

Just call me a logophile.

Permalink :: Tags: English reference words :: Category: Writing :: Comments (0)

May 16, 2006

PDAs: Soft and Hard Resets

A friend of mine bought another PDA when her Zire 22 wouldn’t charge. I asked her why didn’t she tell me as the solution could be an easy one. Nonetheless, I told her to try a soft reset and then a hard reset. She said she was charging the new one and then was going to put the new one into the old one’s cradle to see if it charges. Good idea, but I’d try the reset first.

She came back later and said the soft reset worked. Well, at least, she got a free $30 case out of it.

Info on resets: Before doing any kind of reset, backup the device, if possible. A soft reset compares to rebooting a computer. Doing a reset doesn’t erase the data.

Permalink :: Tags: hotsync palm tungsten zire :: Category: PDAs :: Comments (1)

May 11, 2006

Stealing Story Ideas

First, NY Times writer Jayson Blair plagiarized. Then A Million Pieces writer James Frey who said the work was nonfiction when it was fiction. Dan Brown’s The DaVinci Code is under suspicion. Now How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life by Kaavya Viswanathan has passages from two books by Megan McCafferty.

The last thing I want to do as a writer is plagiarize. As I read resource after resource, I fear that some resource’s words or phrases will stick in my head and I will have thought they’re my own rather than something that hid in a tiny forgotten memory box somewhere in the brain.

I don’t want to steal someone’s ideas and pass them as my own. It feels wrong and I’ll feel guilty for days, months, and possibly years. The cases of Blair and James Frey are obvious. But could Brown and Viswanathan have memorized facts they didn’t realize they had? Brown’s case is a tough one because he intermingles history with fiction.

Permalink :: Tags: reporting plagiarism writer plagiarizing journalism reporter writing :: Category: Writing :: Comments (2)

May 10, 2006

Reporting Accurate Facts

This was a fascinating story to write — Judge Rules Internet Surfing at Work Is OK — as I had an opportunity to interview New York City’s Law Department chief of labor and employment law.

She made it clear this was not a court case. Rather it was a case that went to the City’s Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings. The office oversees disciplinary cases from city agencies.

Permalink :: Tags: reporting new_york Internet journalism microsoft :: Category: Writing :: Comments (0)


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