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Monthly Archives: September 2008

Alternatives To File-Sharing, Torrenting and other Illegal Transfers: Video Edition

In the second edition of the Alternatives to file-sharing, torrenting, and other illegal transfers, we will examine the video side. Let’s just put it out in the open: college students love to illegally download and exchange media. Wide open, blazing broadband going to dorms and apartments provides a fantastic avenue for obtaining music, movies and pictures in a less-than-legal fashion. I was going to write a post about copyright law and its impact of college students, but it is pretty boring. While this series of posts will provide a little information about the copyright laws that deal with filesharing, it will mainly focus on legal alternatives to consume media.

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Posted by on September 25, 2008 in General

 

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Alternatives To File-Sharing, Torrenting and other Illegal Transfers: Music Edition

Let’s just put it out in the open. College students love to illegally download and exchange media. Wide open, blazing broadband going to dorms and apartments provides a fantastic avenue for obtaining music, movies and pictures in a less-than-legal fashion. I was going to write a post about copyright law and its impact of college students, but it is pretty boring. While this series of posts will provide a little information about the copyright laws that deal with filesharing, it will mainly focus on legal alternatives to consume media.  The first edition of Alternatives to File-Sharing, Torrenting and other Illegal Transfers will deal with music.

Music

Maybe you pirate music from services like Limewire, Bittorrent, Kazaa and other p2p networks. Some of you have noticed the drawbacks from using such networks: your computer is slower than frozen molasses and, in extreme cases, you may even have been subpoenaed by the Court System at the behest of the RIAA. Here is a list of alternatives, some free and some paid.

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Posted by on September 24, 2008 in General

 

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Hilarious…But Mostly Sad, Round 2

I was hanging out with some friends the other night and one of them showed me a chain of Angel emails (Penn State’s course management system).  Thanks to Chad (who forwarded this hilarious specimen to me) I am able to post it on this blog.  It is both sad and hilarious, very much like this situation.

Disclaimer: All names and identifying information has been removed from the following, everything thing else is verbatim to the original text.

A student gets on our course management system for an Astronomy 001 class and sends a mass email to everyone in the class.  He thinks he is clever enough to delete the professor’s email out of the list, but professors can see any mass email messages.  Here is the message from the student:

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Posted by on September 21, 2008 in General

 

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When Interns Rate Companies

At job fairs around the country, recruiters promise a summer internship program promising bountiful opportunities and plenty of hands on experience. As some of us know, those promises can sometimes be shattered by menial “intern” work and little opportunity to explore. Ever want to cut through recruiter’s tactful spiel and find out first hand what previous interns think about the company that they worked for?

Enter internshipratings.com, a new, free service that bills itself as “a resource to rate, research and compare internships in various industries across the United States.” Recently featured in a September 16, 2008 Tech Crunch article, the website has a goal to collect information about intern’s experience and relay it in a easy to digest way.

Click “more” to get a taste of what internshipratings.com looks like.

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Posted by on September 18, 2008 in Product/Service Review

 

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Mini Review

Yesterday I purchased the second generation iPod Touch in the 16 GB size. I’m currently writing this post on the device and I am slowly getting used to the virtual keyboard. I am amazed how fast and painless it was to connect to the Penn State wireless network with the VPN. I promise a comprehensive review in a few days.

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2008 in Product/Service Review

 

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Student Identity Theft

Hardly a day goes by where you can’t find a newspaper article, blog post, TV report or other media that deals with identity theft. Unfortunately, the majority of people believe that their chances of being impacted by identity theft are minimal given the sheer number of people in the United States and the world. Unfortunately, recent statistics have proven that identity theft impacts many more people that common knowledge might tell us. A staggering 9 million Americans are victims of identity theft per year, three percent of the United States’ total population. The rate of punishment for identity theft crimes is so low, the only viable alternative is to work hard to prevent the crime from happening in the first place.

A look at recent identity theft trends suggest that college students are said to be at the highest risk of identity theft. The following points are my recommendation for keeping yourself safe from identity theft. My research through government websites and other associations dealing with ID theft have allowed me to share only the most relevant information.

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Posted by on September 16, 2008 in Security

 

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So I Owe A Few Updates…

I haven’t posted anything for a long, long time. The post I did on the email that all Penn State Students received was a measure to hold any regular readers over until I had time to do real posts. This weekend marks the first weekend that I have off from the Penn State Marching Blue Band, so I’m busy researching a few stories and getting caught up on sleep and homework. So I’ll offer up a few cool stories with accompanying links in order to build up some momentum. Strangely, I get a decent number of hits on this blog even though it doesn’t have any current content. I must be doing something right 🙂

  1. Last Tuesday, Apple updated part of their Ipod line. A new Nano, Classic and Touch debuted, as predicted by many analysts and rumor sites. The Nano changes form factor from the previous generation- the shape is similar to the first generation Nano (tall and skinny). Price points are $149 for 8GB and $200 for 16GB. This is a substantial price cut and a shift to higher capacity storage. They come in nine colors (a color scheme similar to Creative’s Zen Micro if anyone remembers that DAP). The iPod Classic didn’t see much change other than resorting to only one storage option. You can now get a 120GB iPod Classic for $249. The new Touch is a slight refresh from the previous generation featuring 8GB, 16GB and 32GB capacities for $229, $299 and $299 respectively. The younger cousin of the iPhone now features a built-in speaker, a slimmer profile, and external volume control. These new features may not sound like much, but they improve the already exceptional device. Read the rest of this entry »
 
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Posted by on September 13, 2008 in Environment, General, Penn State Events