A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Frank Reed
Date: 2010 Oct 23, 19:57 -0700
Douglas Denny wrote:
"I have just noticed the image files are linked so not easily accessible. So here it is again with them directly associated with this."
Please, NEVER do this again. First of all, those files have no relevance to NavList (so you could have shared them individually). Second, "linked files" are easily accessible.
But... I do understand that some NavList members are confused about the basics of using the internet, so I will add some simple instructions here. Suppose you see a web address in an email or on a web page like this:
It's not "highlighted". You can't click on it (actually, many browsers and email readers hyperlink automatically, so maybe it is clickable for some of you). So what do you do? I have discovered in the past year or two that a great many people who spend hours online every day no longer know this most basic and trivial thing about using the web --they don't know how to use a web address if it's not directly clickable. What you're supposed to do is take that address and type it in (or better yet copy it to the clipboard and then paste it). Aha, but here we discover the even more amazing thing... that many people no longer know even what that means. "Type it where?" they will say. You're supposed to type it (or paste it) INTO THE ADDRESS BAR AT THE TOP OF YOUR WEB BROWSER. When you open your web browser, it opens at, e.g. www.google.com, or perhaps some other "start page". That place where you see that address at the very top of your browser, not in the web page but above it... THAT is where you type the address. You can type any address you want! Right about now, someone out there is reading this and saying, "Oh come on... Everybody knows that." But it's not true. A great many people have learned the internet in an organic, free-form fashion in the past few years. They frequently miss the basics. And yes, this is one of those important basics that you do not want to miss. Any file that is "linked" in any NavList message can be opened EASILY by typing the address into the web browser address bar (or copying it and pasting it into the address bar). Oh, and no that doesn't mean typing it into google. This is the next problem. Many people when they hear "type it into your browser" immediately call up google or bing or some other search engine. No, that's not it, and frequently it won't work, and in many cases, it can lead you astray. In particular, for all of you folks out there who have become "facebook addicts" in the past year, you should not be reaching facebook by going to google and typing in facebook. You should go to the address bar in your browser and THEN type in facebook.com (and if you go there a lot, you should "bookmark it" or "add it to your favorites" to save typing, but don't google it every time).
I apologize to the internet geniuses reading this. I am sure you can't imagine people who can't figure this out, but it is plain that we do have quite a few on NavList. And normally I would say, if that's the way it is, that's the way it is. The customer is always right and all that. But this is a fairly bright crowd. It's not asking too much to learn the very basics of internet use.
And now for something completely different...
A warning about a rapidly-growing and incredibly annoying scam. Consider this a "PSA" (*). The same sorts of people who have missed the above basic procedure for accessing internet addresses are often victims of a really nasty internet crime that is draining money from the pockets of millions of people every year. It's a particular type of "malware" attack (viruses are ancient history) and it goes like this:
You're working on your computer when suddenly it says "Virus detected! You got virus Blah.Win32.net! Click now clean now!" --often in slightly broken English. So, since you don't like viruses, you click to clean. Then it tells you that you have dozens of infected files with numerous flavors of viruses, trojans, and worms, oh my! Next, when you attempt to get on the internet to learn more, a message comes up that says "Infected: access denied" or something like that. You can't do anything because of "all those viruses". And now that the mark has been prepared, here comes the con. A message box will pop up inviting you to visit a very professional-sounding and professional-looking web site, e.g. WinAntiVirusx2010 (a fictional example), which will clean your computer of all infections for the low, low price of $29.95.... But the WHOLE THING is a trick. You didn't have any viruses at all. The alerts are fraudulent, and instead the attacking software has now locked down your computer and is holding it hostage making it impossible to do anything with the computer unless you pay their protection money (the software they are selling simply turns off their own infection). No genuine anti-virus software would do this. If the only place you can visit on the internet for more than a few seconds is some random place selling anti-virus software, then you are under attack. Don't pay up. Once they've got you, they've got you for good. I have a question to which, I hope, all of you will answer "no". Does this sound familiar? Is it already too late? These sorts of malware "infections" can be extremely difficult to repair. These scams usually target the Windows operating system, but they don't really depend on operating systems. If you do have the misfortune of suffering from one of these attacks, the best advice I can offer for Windows users is to get to another computer and download "Malwarebytes Anti-Malware" (that you can google) and put it on a CD or a flash drive. Boot the attacked computer in "Safe Mode" and then install the above software and let it do its thing, several times. Afterwards, if you want free protection, consider "AVG" and "ZoneAlarm". But don't pay the protection money. These folks are no better than organized criminal gangs. And, yes, I have had to fix four different computers for friends and acquaintances in the past year attacked in this way (no I don't accept payment for the service). It's a real risk even for computer users who think they know what they're doing. Beware...
*PSA="Public Service Announcement" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_service_announcement
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