Archive for the 'Technology' Category


Googles Interest Based Advertising Privacy Concerns

I just received an email from Google about a new Adsense advertising scheme that is coming out. It concerns me a little about the privacy of readers. This new system, when I checked Adsense, is turned ON by default and it set a cookie on the readers computer that tracks sites the readers visits – not just the site they are currently on – and collects information on what they are browsing so they can put adverts on ANY site that has opted in that will target the reader.

For example, you love Dogs and visit dog sites then one day you decide you want to buy a cat, you visit a cat website but the site will display Dog adverts because that is what you have been looking at. Ok, innocent and not so bad but I would want adverts related to the site I am on.

OK, not so innocent example, an adult uses their family computer (like most families they only have one shared computer) to look at bikini girl sites or maybe a fan of bloody horror movies, next, little Johnny goes online to look at his favourite website about cartoons – the ads will be targetted on the most visited sites/information – so bikini or horror ads will be shown up to the little boy.

How to stop it seeing most sites will have this turned on by default, well the person visiting must know they have to visit a specific Google page and turn the tracking off. Bad news for privacy, bad news for Google.

google - privacy gone with interest-based advertising via adsenseGoogle is trying to get out of it by saying that the sites owner must state the fact on their privacy page but come on, who would visit these pages especially seeing you don’t know you are being tracked from site to site. Google has gone too far methinks, imagine if Microsoft or a government tracked your web surfing – that is really what Google is doing. They tried with their Web History but most people don’t have Google accounts, this DART cookie doesn’t need you to have an account it will track you everywhere.

Googles original Adsense works great, the ads are related to the page you are reading and I believe that is the best.

People please opt out of these – both Website owners and Web surfers do it now. Opt out of it here – .

We’re writing to let you know about the upcoming launch of interest-based advertising, which will require you to review and make any necessary changes to your site’s privacy policies. You’ll also see some new options on your Account Settings page.

Interest-based advertising will allow advertisers to show ads based on a user’s previous interactions with them, such as visits to advertiser website and also to reach users based on their interests (e.g. “sports enthusiast”). To develop interest categories, we will recognise the types of web pages users visit throughout the Google content network [ that is a huge amount of the web remember]. As an example, if they visit a number of sports pages, we will add them to the “sports enthusiast” interest category. To learn more about your associated account settings, please visit the AdSense Help Centre at

If I have this all wrong and there is nothing really bad and privacy issues are still fine please comment and explain it to me. Maybe I just haven’t thought it through, or maybe I have thought about it too much.:)


10 Great Rapidshare Search Engines

rapidshare-search-enginesA lot of people use Rapidshare, and also Megaupload and others I might add, to share files around the world. The only way I have used them is if I have a direct link to the file I am after because how else could you find a file on Rapidshare? Well it is quite easy actually because there are heaps of sites that offer the ability to search through Rapidshare.

I have tried out a lot of them and this is my list of 10 Rapidshare Search Engines. Of course the search is only useful if the file name has the search term in it, if the file is called musica49B you have no chance of finding it. Most, maybe all use a custom modified Google search for their results. You may have a favourite so let me know please.

  • FileCrop searches Rapidshare and you can specify the range of file size – eg. between, say, 30MB and 50MB, good to help narrow down the search.
  • RapidLibrary is a good one. It searches Rapidshare but they also have a MegaUpload search site as well.
  • RapidShareSearchEngine works really well and searches are grouped , meaning similar files names are together. Well done and you can even change the look of the site if you want.
  • ShareDigger is a nice and simple RapidShare serach engine but also can search 15 other file deposit sites as well.
  • Leecha is another multi file hosting search site. This ones feature is that you can tick just the sites you want to search.
  • RapidZero is interesting. It is not a simple RapidShare Search Engine it is a forum that list all Rapidshare links (you can search the forums of course) Really, really good.
  • LoadEvery is very comprehensive with more than 20 sites to search on top of Rapidshare. Once again just tick the ones you want. They also have a LoadEveryLite for a simple interface if wanted.
  • Gappon is nice, simple and neat. Fast too.
  • TotMe is another RS search engine. They say they check 100,000 Rapidshare links everyday so no outdated links.
  • Megadownload is a good choice for MegaUpload and RapidShare files. Simple and fast.

Well that is it, 10 of the best RS search engines. There are lots more but most of the others I tried use Pop-up ads and other sneaky adverts.


A new phone, N96 or C905

I am on the hunt for a new mobile phone. Yes, it’s called a  mobile phone not cell phone in my country 🙂

Here is a view/ review (written in good old sales script) on a couple of good looking phones, not bad at all but maybe a bit too over the top for me. The Sony Ericsson c905 is a little smaller than the Nokia N96 and feels nicer in the hand. Let me know what phone you think, remember data plans are super expensive here in Australia, especially Telstras network (at least double of others) so things like the iPhone are out.


Nokia N96

Some people are looking for a phone that’s just a phone. But if you’re looking for a phone that has more tools than Inspector Gadget, then you’ve found it right here. Offering superior features and multiple applications, this phone will keep you entertained with big-time fun that’s small enough to fit into your hand.
Photo quality is fantastic thanks to a 5 megapixel Carl Zeiss lens, autofocus and dual LED flash. Ever wanted to share a great place with your friends, but have found it hard to relay exactly where it is? Switch on ‘geo-tagging’ to add the geographical location to any photograph you take. Friends can use this information to locate your recommended destinations while travelling or out-and-about in town.
The Nokia N96 features an FM radio and music player with dedicated music and gaming keys.Listen through your own headphones or enjoy full-bodied sound through built-in stereo speakers. Sporting an unbelievable 16 gigabytes of internal memory, you’d have a hard time trying to fill it up, but for those who like to max out their phone’s capacity, the microSD slot will take up to 16 gigabytes on top.
On the practical side, the N96 features easy email set-up with document viewer, wi-fi internet and an in-depth organiser. Speaker phone is clear, as is call quality and messaging is straightforward and intuitive.

Sony Ericsson C905

You’d curse yourself for not bringing your camera. Who would believe you without proof? Enter the 8 megapixel Sony Ericsson C905 for immediate image capture. This brilliant auto-focus camera phone takes only a second to open so you won’t miss another once-in -a-lifetime moment. With heaps of settings and the Xenon flash illuminating even the darkest environment ,your photos will be of stunning quality. Immediately send them via MMS to mobiles or email addresses to spread the wprd of your discovery!

The music player is very similar to the Sony Ericsson Walkman phones, playing a variety of file types with MegaBass equaliser and stereo Widener.The FM radio features the TrackID system which traces the artist and song title of any radio song that you like. A new innovation of this system is the “Find similar music” function to recommend similar songs to the one you have traced.

It’s certainly not lacking in communication advancements either. The Manage Message feature helps to organise your messages by sorting into Business, Follow Up, Important, or create your own categories. You can also sort by sender and store on the phone or transfer to the included 2GB memory card. Call quality is great and you can count on long battery. The phone also features GPS navigation and Google Maps. So map out where the action is and get yourself there with this image-hungry essential for any photo fan.


Windows 7 Beta, Download ISO From Microsoft Direct

Reading around the place the public release of Windows 7 Beta is out right now. Unfortunately Microsoft is having a little trouble with their site because of the massive traffic and interest of Windows 7.

They have posted

Due to very heavy traffic we’re seeing as a result of interest in the Windows 7 Beta, we are adding some additional infrastructure support to the properties before we post the public beta… best possible experience when downloading the beta.

Windows 7 looks to be a must have OS even though I am completely happy with Vista (and my guess is the ones whinging about Vista haven’t really used it – I know this from friends that bag it but have never used it!)

If you are one of those types that must have the latest and greatest and must have it right now, here is a little help.

Here is the direct download link from Microsoft that they have removed from their site for Windows 7 Beta Public 32bit and Windows 7 Beta Public 64bit . Go get them now!

Also don’t forget to update Windows 7 when you have it installed as there is a bug the could currupt your MP3s (info here )

Windows 7 Download From Microsoft

Pokemon Master – A World Record

world record pokemon collector

Just doing a little web surfing and came across the Guiness Book Of Records site. Lots to read there, some interesting, some fascinating, some just weird. Anyway , I found a bit of a weird one.

This woman is called Pikabellechu (not sure what her real name is) and she is one mad Pokemon collector. She has collected more than 8000 Pokemon memorabilia, all Pikachu, even has a Pikachu shaped VW bug – she says its an official Pokemon car – can’t see how unless she works for Nintendo. Wow, ten long years to collect all this and I would think many thousands of dollars as well. She has a bumber sticker in one photo saying “Pokemon Put Me in the Poorhouse”.

Now, my son really likes Pokemon games on his NDS plus some online pokemon games like his one time favourite Pokemon Crater but games and being a crazy collector are two completely different things.

Takes all types I guess and I guess she really likes doing what she is doing.


Review Top 10 Best Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

Blog and Ping! Blog and Ping! I have read about doing this to increase your blogs popularity. I don’t know how true it is but I thought I would list what I think are the Top 10 Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers. The Best there is.

So what does pinging do? Well a Blog Pinger lets a service, which tracks and connects to blogs, to know you have updated you blog (made a new post) so they can come and visit to check you out. In other words they crawl and index your site, publishing your blogs contents, and in turn increase your blog’s popularity. I have used Pingomatic and as it goes it is pretty good but maybe too many bloggers use it because, for me, it does not connect sometimes.

So I have put Pingomatic as one but what are other alternatives to Pingomatic, the other 9 of the top 10 Best Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers?

goldcoaster pingomatic Top 10 Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

Ping-o-Matic is one of the best known blog ping services around. It pings to 19 general services and 5 specialised services. It says on the site they regularly check downstream services to make sure that they’re legit and still work. So while it may appear like they have fewer services, they’re the most important ones.

goldcoaster-blogblip-top-10-online-multiple-services-blog-pingersBlogBlip is the big one for me. No fancy logo – It currently sends pings to 44 web services plus it says you can request addition of more directories to its list using the form on the site. Not all services work (well not for me) but still, it’s very, very good.

goldcoaster feed shark Best Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

Feed Shark Is number three. It pings 16 services that accept blogs as well as 12 services that accept RSS feeds and a further 8 services that accept podcasts. Impressive and with a neat page that shows your submission status on the same page as the entry.


Autopinger is a little different from most. It handles the pinging task for you automatically, Autopinger will check your blogs and podcast feeds every 30 mins. and if you have posted it then pings a variety of services (25 English services , almost as many non english) – no need to manually ping. (well, if you need to ping immediately you can do manual pinging as well).


King Ping is a free automatic pinging service that makes pinging faster and easier for bloggers and online publishers. A huge 57 web services are available.


PinGates has 44 pinging services listed and notifies them to auto-ping your blog. Neat layout and works well for me. This site has been around for a while now.

GoldCoaster MyPageRank Top 10 Best Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

MyPageRank Ping is a very simple pinging service – well to be honest they are all simple aren’t they – and it pings 25 different services.

GoldCoaster PingIN Top 10 Best Online Multiple-Services Blog Pingers

Ping.IN is another blog ping service that notifies Blog Services like Blog Search Engines and directories that your blog has been updated. This lets them index your blog fast and make your content available for larger audiences ie: more popular.

goldcoaster ipings ping service

iPings is just a plain old ping service. Pinging around 31 services. the reason I have included it here is probably because of the Apple type name 🙂


Pingoat – a strange name but is another site that pings a number of services that keep track of weblogs and publish them. By pinging, you let the services know that your blog has been updated and so, they crawl and index your site, publishing your blog contents, and then increasing your blog’s popularity. I have to say this is not my favourite.


Googles New Adsense For Feeds

I was just checking my adsense account and noticed a new option – Google adsense For Feeds, it wasn’t there yesterday! I remember reading over at Feedburner ages ago that this was going to happen , well it has arrived.

Ads in RSS Feeds, good or bad? To be honest ads in feeds don’t worry me except for some animated types. One RSS feed I have has certain ads that keep refreshing (something like that) and this makes the page scroll back to the top 😦 – so when I start reading down it pops back to the top again every few seconds, very annoying!

Hopefully Googles version will be fine. You can only have one ad and can choose whether it is placed at the top or bottom. you can also say ads only go in posts of a certain size and every X amount of posts. Also the ads are auto sized – which is good , no huge ads spamming everyone. Not bad at all.


If you want any help about it just ask and I will try. You can also try Google’s help page.


Hack AntiVir – disable the nag screen

I have just bought a new notebook pc and was looking for a FREE antivirus program to install.

I have used AVG free before but since it went to V8 and you had to upgrade I haven’t liked it. It just seems a bit too big and lumpy now. Search Search Search and I found Avira AntiVir.

But the one thing I don’t like, fairly minor I guess, is the “Buy the Pro Version” nag screen that pops up after it updates each day .

Well, here is a little work around hack to stop it popping up.
My PC has Windows Vista Home Premium by the way, please no Apple Macs don’t get viruses comments 🙂 .

  • Go to C:\Program Files\Avira\AntiVir PersonalEdition Classic\avnotify.exe
  • Rightclick avnotify.exe and chose Properties then Security
  • Under the “Group or Username” SYSTEM click Edit
  • Put a checkmark under the Deny column for “Read and Execute” (one will also check at Read automatically)
  • 20

    Telstra to offer iPhone – Australian plan prices revealed?

    iphone plans in australiaI am thinking that for sure Telstra is going to have the iPhone now. I have read news reports that Telstra were struggling with Apple about wanting their own applications on the iPhone and not the standard ones that all iPhones have.

    And costs for the Australian iPhone , no one is saying but…. I have a little information by way of a survey emailed to me. I have screenshots of the survey, not all questions but the most revealing ones. At first I didn’t know it was Telstra in the survey but guessed by the questions (asking about Yellow pages on the iPhone…) – and the last screen said the survey was for Telstra.

    Notice the price mentioned – $220 plus $80 per month, no mention of data included and no questions about data at all so who knows what you get for $80 per month. It did also ask what the maximum I would expect to pay.

    Anyway this looks like the first hint at plan prices from an Australian carrier for the iPhone.



    iphone australia plans


    Charge your iPod with an Onion

    I was just surfing around trying to find some little science project for my young son to do at school and came across this youtube vid on how to charge your Apple  iPod with just an onion and some gatorade, of all things.

    Amazing! I’ll have to try this myself now.

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