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  • A break – in praise of COVID-19 sanity

    Posted on February 27th, 2020 at 08:06 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    I’m not an epidemiologist. You aren’t either. But I’ve bumped into a tremendous series of Tweets from someone who is, Alistair Miles.

    I rarely comment about the world at large from here at AskWoody Central. You get enough of that bombardment every day from a million sources. But this measured, informed and reasoned response really struck a chord.

    Miles concludes by saying:

    If you know someone who works in healthcare, reach out and say hi, and thank you.

    … and I would like to reach out to all of you who work in healthcare (and those of you who help folks in healthcare), and say hi and thank you.

    Things are going to get hairy. But there’s no need to panic. We’re all in this leaky boat together.

    (Comment, if you feel so inspired, but leave the politics out of it, please! Many mistakes have been made. Many more will be made. This post is all about thanking and encouraging folks who will face a tough time, on our behalf. Nuff said.)

  • Happy New Year!

    Posted on January 25th, 2020 at 08:06 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge


  • Using the Opera browser? Here’s something you need to consider

    Posted on January 17th, 2020 at 06:36 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    I knew that Opera was having problems — but not these kinds of problems.

    Per Steve Symington at the Motley Fool:

    Shares of Opera (NASDAQ:OPRA) were down 17.4% as of 3:30 p.m. EST on Thursday as the software company fell into the crosshairs of a noted short-seller. In a new report published this morning, ominously named short-selling firm Hindenburg Research argued that Opera should be trading closer to $2.60 per share — a 70% discount from Wednesday’s close at around $9.  For perspective, Opera shares had already fallen nearly 25% from the company’s initial public offering in July 2018 at $12 per share — a price Hindenburg Research says was largely justified by the since-scuttled growth prospects for Opera’s web browser.

    No, I don’t know Hindenburg research, and I have no insight to their allegations. But this just strains my imagination:

    With its browser business in decline, cash flow deteriorating (and balance sheet cash finding its way into management’s hands…more on this later), Opera has decided to embark on a dramatic business pivot: predatory short-term lending in Africa and Asia.

    If you’re relying on Opera, you’d be well advise to find another pony.

    Thx, @SimonZerafa.

  • Have a tech question? We have answers….

    Posted on January 12th, 2020 at 09:28 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    I’m getting a deluge of mail directed to the Customer Support email address,, that aren’t about Customer Support issues.

    While I welcome your questions with open arms, I can’t possibly answer all of them. Here’s what I say in the FAQ:

    Can’t you just answer a simple question?

    For years I answered questions one-on-one as best I could until it struck me that there’s a much better way — answer questions out in the open, so everybody can see my answers, and offer other answers. That’s how AskWoody was born. So if you email me a tech question, tweet me, or send one to me via CustomerSupport, or a direct message, my go-to response is to have you post it on AskWoody. I’m not being cavalier or evasive. I’m pointing you to the best resource for you, me, and everybody who’s interested.

    Where do I post a question (or answer)?

    There’s no “general question” forum here on AskWoody. With a million posts, it’d get pretty crowded in there. Instead, you need to find a place for your specific question. Try looking at the Forums list (the tab at the top), or search the Lounge using the box on the right, or with Google using More info. Find an appropriate forum then scroll down to the bottom, type in your post and click Submit. More info.

    What should I post?

    If you are asking for assistance in this forum, here are a few suggestions that may help those who are providing assistance:

    • Make sure your topic is in the right place.
    • Provide your operating system and version.
    • Write a complete description of the problem.
    • Include complete error messages. (Usually you can click on a Windows error message and hit Ctrl+C to copy it to the clipboard.)
    • Present remedies attempted and the results. If you’ve posted on another site, post a link.

    I’m very, very happy that so many of you have found the site — particularly that Plus Members are now availing themselves of all the talent on — but there aren’t enough hours in the day for me to answer each question individually.

    Remember, is for support issues — Plus memberships, delivery problems, changing usernames, and the like.

    For tech help, find a place here on the site and post away! There are hundreds of experienced people here to help. And, yes, it’s free. There are no ads. We’ll keep going as long as Plus Members keep supporting us with their donations.

  • hits ten years

    Posted on December 29th, 2019 at 21:58 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    I remember wondering, when Brian Krebs left the Washington Post, if he’d be able to keep his site going. I’m very, very happy to report that just hit its tenth anniversary. That’s an extraordinary achievement from one of the world’s foremost investigative reporters.

    Ends up that Brian supports his site with hand-curated display ads: If you block ads on his site, he loses revenue. If you run an adblocker, please take a moment now to turn off blocking on Just to say, “thanks.”

  • Greetings from AskWoody Central

    Posted on December 25th, 2019 at 07:20 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    From my family to yours. Thanks for contributing!

  • Nearly time to start tracking Santa again

    Posted on December 24th, 2019 at 01:42 Kirsty Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    While children, young and old, are readying the milk and cookies for Santa in New Zealand and Australia right now (where it is already Christmas Eve), Norad and Google are readying their trackers, so we can track the progress of Santa Claus and his eight Reindeer.

    You can also follow the Norad Tracks Santa Twitter account!

    From all of us here at AskWoody, Merry Christmas to one and all.

  • OK Google. Say where is the taxi stand in Portuguese.

    Posted on December 14th, 2019 at 06:47 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Most of the time new technology doesn’t mean much to me. Tell me that Microsoft has a new set of icons and I start snoring. Show me a fancy new laptop and I rarely raise an eyebrow — except at the price. Mobile phones were a biggie, but it was years before I took them seriously. Same for WiFi. Car backup cameras. Big TVs.

    There are exceptions. My first non-trivial FORTRAN program blew me away. When I plugged in a bunch of Google Mesh nodes and WiFi just worked. The iPad. First ride in a Tesla. Windows Home Server. Roomba. Alexa.

    This morning I had another “kapow!” moment and wanted to make sure you know about. Google’s Interpreter, which was released a couple of days ago.

    I pick up my phone and say OK Google. Say what is for breakfast in Thai. A voice comes back to me in perfect Thai.

    OK Google. Say where is the bathroom in Russian.

    OK Google Say where is the taxi stand in Portuguese.

    This, my friends, is some serious magic. The Hitchhiker’s Babel fish is almost here.