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Sunday, November 30, 2014

Holiday Eating Tips from the Editor's Cousin Judy

Holiday Eating Tips:


1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they’re serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. Like fine single-malt Scotch. In fact, it’s even rarer than single-malt Scotch. You can’t find it any other time of the year but now. So drink up! Who cares if it has 10,000 calories in every sips. It’s not as if you’re going to turn into an eggnog-aholic or something. It’s a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It’s later than you think. It’s Christmas.

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That’s the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they’re made with skim milk or whole milk. If it’s skim, pass. Why bother? It’s like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission. 

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in a effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people’s food for free. Lots of it. Hello?

6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year’s. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you’ll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.

7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don’t budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They’re like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you’re never going to see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple. Pumpkin. Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or, if you don’t like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it’s loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories, but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have some standards. 

10 One final tip: If you don’t feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven’t been paying attention. Reread tips; start over, but hurry. January is just around the corner.


Remember this motto to live by: Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body; but to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, body throughly sued up, totally worn out and screaming:



Tom Briant

Editor, MacValley Blog


P.S. If you got a good laugh out of this, but have some ideas for variations based on your religion or culture, please! Submit them to me and I’ll post them. For Goodness sake, let’s party together this time of year. 



Saturday, November 29, 2014

Holy vintage vehicles! Earliest known official Batmobile goes on sale • The Register

Holy vintage vehicles! Earliest known official Batmobile goes on sale • The Register: ""



You’ve gotta see the picture of this thing. Now will it pass smog inspection here in California?


Tom Briant

Editor, MacValley Blog

Thursday, November 27, 2014

The Return of Forked-Daapd! New and Improved! Thank you, Julien Blache

The Return of Forked-Daapd (Thank you, Julien Blache)


As a nerd in his shorts in his tiny condo in Canoga Park, CA; I have experimented with Linux and various iTunes music server apps. I have written about two music server Linux apps in the past, forked-daapd and Tangerine.  

The old version of forked-daapd (0.19) stopped working with iTunes after 15 minutes. The new version of forked-daapd, though, continues to work. To get it, though, you need to install Ubuntu Linux 14.10 “Utopic Unicorn”. This is the latest version with the latest apps.

To install forked-daapd ver 0.2x,  you will need to use the Terminal, so roll up your sleeves and get ready. I will guide you through the steps.


To get Ubuntu 14.10, you go to Ubuntu. Com and download the .iso disk image. It’s about 1.16 Gb in size. You will need to burn it to a DVD, not a CD. 


I do a lot of playing with Linux, so I have learned to use DVD-RW disks. When I burn a new DVD with a new version of Linux to install, OS X’s disk utility erases the old file to clear the way for the new one. So if you intend to play with Linux, get a package of DVD-RW disks to save yourself from a desk overrun with “coasters”.


To burn a Linux disk in OS X, open Disk Utility which you will find in your /Applications/Utility folder. 


Now press the Command key + B. This opens a File Dialog box for you to select the image file you want to burn to that DVD.  (Figure 1) 


Figure 1 selecting the disk image to burn

Having selected the file you want to burn, insert the blank or erasable DVD into the burner. Follow the on-screen prompts and you’ll have an install DVD in 10 minutes. 


Now you will need a DVD burner, too; if you go this route and install via a DVD. You could use a USB flash drive as an alternative means of installation. The Ubuntu site has instructions on installing the disk image on a USB flash drive.  That’s your extra-credit assignment!


The Ubuntu Linux install procedure will remind you of installing OS X from a disk, if you go that far back. You can select which hard drive you want to install to, set up your language, keyboard, and time zone preferences. You set up your user name, your password, and the name of your computer.  Then you sit back as Ubuntu presents a slide show as installation goes on, showing the benefits of Linux. 


At the end, you reboot the machine, remove the DVD, and press the ENTER key. You should start up  in Linux or go to the GRUB menu which lets you choose between the various systems installed on your computer. On my test rig, I have four hard drives (!), each with a different operating system. See Windows Hints at the end if you have trouble with a dual-booting Windows/Linux system. 


So you’ve installed Ubuntu Linux 14.10 on a PC. Now what?


You will want to install the updates as your first thing. You will see a blinking/bouncing icon asking for your attention. Install the updates. 


Now you want to install several pieces of software from the Terminal’s command line. This may look like Linux voodoo, but I will explain it to you.    


You first want to install netatalk, which allows you to connect your Linux machine to your Mac using the Apple File Protocol (AFP).  


Open the Terminal by pressing Control+Alt+T. The Linux Terminal comes up, looking a lot like the OS X Terminal. Well, they are cousins with their roots in UNIX. 


Enter the following command into the Terminal sudo apt-get install netatalk



Enter your password when requested. You won’t see it on the screen, but press ENTER when you’re done. 


Follow the prompts pressing Y when asked to. 


Here’s how it breaks down. sudo makes you a temporary superuser with root privileges


Apt-get is the command-line utility for installing programs. It comes from the Debian version of Linux. Ubuntu and many other distros of Linux descend from Debian.


Install tells apt-get that you want to install the following program.


Netatalk is the program you want to install. It comes from a Ubuntu repository. Think of it as the command-line equivalent of Apple’s Mac App Store, only predating it by several years.


Once the installation finishes and you return to the command prompt, you need to edit netatalk configuration file. To do that, enter this command:


Sudo nano /etc/netatalk/atalkd.conf


Again, sudo makes you a temporary superuser. You’ll need to enter your password to gain temporary privileges.


nano is the Terminal-based editor. It’s simple to use, compared to Vim and Emacs, other Terminal-based editors of much great complexity. 


/etc/netatalk/atalkd.conf is the path to the atalkd.conf configuration file. 


You only need to add the phrase eth0 to the bottom of the configuration file.  That’s a Zero at the end of the eth, not an o.

Netatalk conf editied with eth0




Now look in your Finder. If you connected the Linux computer to your LAN, you should see its computer name appear in the Finder’s sidebar under the Shared devices

In this picture, the shared device is Minotaur. For those of you paying attention, I recycled a picture above showing a Linux machine called Ellery. 

Shared devices showing miinotaur


Installing and Configuration of forked-daapd


The installation of forked-daapd is easy. You enter this command into the Terminal:


Sudo apt-get install forked-daapd


Enter your password when requested. You’ll see a lot of text scroll by. When asked for your permission, type “y”.


Now for the configuration of forked-daapd. I have read too many articles that gloss over this portion. It is not as easy as the proverbial pie and I will show you the pitfalls.


First off, you have to edit another configuration file, /etc/forked-daapd.conf


You can use the simple nano editor for this. 


This is the part of forked-daapd.conf that you need to edit initially.


# Library configuration

library {

# Name of the library as displayed by the clients

# %h: hostname, %v: version

name = "My Mighty Minotaur Music on %h"

# TCP port to listen on. Default port is 3689 (daap)

port = 3689

# Password for the library. Optional.

#password = ""


# Directories to index

directories = { "/home/thomas/Music" }



First off, the name of the libray displayed to clients.


 By default, it’s name= “My Music on %h”


I just changed it to “My Mighty Minotaur Music on %h”  The “%h” refers to the name of the computer, which in this case is Minotaur.


Now the line read “# Directories to index” This is the path to the directories with the music you want to serve up.  This is the line in the configuration line that will drive you nuts if you’re not careful.


As you can see, I have entered “/home/thomas/Music” Notice that some words come in lower-case and the last word comes capitalized. Pay Attention, as Linux is case-sensitive unlike OS X.


I’m going to show you how to find that path with the correct capitalization without wasting time.


First, open your Terminal with Control+Alt+T You will open to a prompt that should display your user name and the name of the computer. In my case, it’s “thomas@Minotaur”

The basic thomas and minotaur screen prompt



Now enter the command ls (list) and press the ENTER key. You won’t need to enter your password.

Listing of folders within HOme direcotry of Thomas and miniotaur


You should see a listing of the directories within your Home directory.  One of these should be Music.

Now enter the command cd Music to move into the Music directory.

Move with CD into the Music folder of hte home directory


Now my command prompt displays “thomas@Minotaur:~/Music$” This means I am in the Music directory.

Now do ls  again to see any directories that you have copied into Music. You should see any directories (folders) of music that you copied in. 

Now for the million-dollar command. Enter pwd (print working directory) which gives you the path from the root to the directory you stored the music in.  Press the ENTER key. Again, no password is needed.

The money shot showing pwd to display path to music directory


In my case, it’s “/home/thomas/Music”  Note the spelling and especially any capitalized words.  Yours should be different from mine.

Enter that exactly as the path in forked-daapd.conf


Starting and Stopping forked-daapd

Forked-daapd is a service that automatically starts up when you start up Linux. It will rescan and index the music you have placed in the directory you designated. 

If you add or subtract music during a session, forked-daapd will NOT automatically rescan and index these changes. You have to manually stop and start the program.  

To stop forked-daapd, open the Terminal and type

 sudo /etc/init.d/forked-daapd stop


To restart a stopped session of forked-daapd, open the Terminal and type

sudo /etc/init.d/forked-daapd start

Each time you stop and start , you have to enter your password.


Hints for Windows users

If you use Windows and particularly if you dual boot with Linux, I have some tips for you. 

First, Windows 7 & 8.1 include facilities for burning image files to CD or DVD. Right-click on the image file in the Windows Explorer. You will see an option for burning DVDs from image files. 

Second, if you want to play with Linux on a dual-boot machine, you need to know about the Linux boot repair distro. This is a specialized Linux distro that will repair your GRUB boot menu. I recommend it you get it and burn several copies, in case you can’t find the first one. At that point, you’ve probably can’t boot into either Windows or Linux.  Get it from here. It’s a Godsend for those of us who play with Linux. 

Third, if you’ve copied music folders from your Windows user directory to the Linux music directory, you may find that they don’t appear in the music files forked-daapd lists on iTunes. This is a “WTF” moment. 

Now the iTunes files I copied from my Mac worked fine. What’s the problem? The problem is pesky permissions

For example, I copied a folder of music from The Cleveland Orchestra from my Windows iTunes directory to my Linux Music directory. I stopped and started forked-daapd. What?! No Cleveland Orchestra?! What is the problem?

As I said, the problem lies with the file and folder permissions. 

Here is a screenshot of The Cleveland Orchestra folder. 


Cleveland Orchestra permissions showing NO ACCESS

Here is a screenshot of the permissions for Alice Cooper’s Greatest Hits, which displays in iTunes from forked-daapd. 

Alice Cooper folder showing ACCESS



Note that the permissions for the Cleveland Orchestra for group and others do not allow access to files. With Alice Cooper’s Greatest Hits, group and others do have access to files.

So. Change the permissions for The Cleveland Orchestra to match those of the Alice Cooper’s folder.  Click on the downward arrow at the right-hand side of Access.

Change the permissions within the folder, too. Click on that button

Click on Change and you’re done.

Now stop and restart forked-daapd and voila! The Cleveland Orchestra plays through forked-daapd on iTunes. 

Cleveland Orchestra music folder in iTunes from f d



This article covered how to install and configure forked-daapd 0.2x. I would like to thank Julien Blache for his work in developing this app and also to everyone else who has worked on it over the years. Your work, ladies and gentlemen, is greatly appreciated. 

Please see my earlier articles on forked-daapd and the Tangerine music server if you need more detail on a part I glossed over. 

And last of all, but not least, a big, big vote of thanks to Arvid Srinivasan and his original Mac|Life article on building an OS X friendly Linux Music Server using an old Windows PC. I refer back to that article for many details.  Thank you MacLIfe and Future Publications for allowing me to borrow from that article. 

Today is Thanksgiving here in the United States, which begins the holiday season of feasting and celebrating. I’ll post a humorous article sent to me by my cousin Judy about how to conduct yourself. 


Tom Briant

Editor, MacValley 






















Saturday, November 22, 2014

Senior Correspondent Arnold Woodworth's Weekly Web Roundup

Apple Releases iOS 8.1.1, It's An Essential Update

Apple releases iOS 8.1.1 to improve performance on old products

Apple says the latest release should speed things up on iPad 2 and iPhone 4S, two of the company's aging devices.

Apple has released OS X 10.10.1, its first update to Yosemite.

iOS 8 vs Android 5.0 Lollipop Review: Material Difference

Exclusive: The iPhone 6's A8 chip can play 4K video

Even though Apple hasn't announced it, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are ready to play 4K videos.

The discovery was made by the developers of WALTR, a great Mac app that allows users to quickly upload video files to their iPhone which aren't supported by iTunes.

Apple's A8 Chip In The iPhone 6 And iPhone 6 Plus Enables Support For 4K Video Playback

A device that has 4K support essentially means it has a horizontal resolution of approximately 4,000 pixels.

AW comment:  That's getting very close to movie theater resolution.

According to a report on Friday, Apple's latest iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models are able to play back 4K video thanks to the powerful A8 system-on-chip, suggesting a future Apple TV model equipped with the same silicon would offer support for ultra high definition programming.

During testing of its media file conversion app WALTR, developer Softorino discovered Apple's A8 processor can play back 4K videos on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

Reader comment:  Now if only 4K TVs weren't so eye-wateringly expensive.

Constantly Staring At Your Phone Is Bad For The Spine, Says Study

Some doctors are already working with patients that have head, neck and back pain caused by “text neck.”

DOJ: A child will die due to Apple's iOS 8 encryption tech

Apple General Counsel Bruce Sewell called the theoretical circumstance inflammatory and inaccurate, pointing out police have more tools at their disposal when it comes to gleaning information from mobile devices.

When asked why Apple can't create a backdoor to be used by law enforcement agents acting with proper court approval, Sewell said, "We can't create a key that only the good guys can use."

Encryption Again: Choose Wisely America

Note two things:
• The scaremongering using children, the typical way that the government shuts down anything reasoned debate.
• Not even a pretense that the desired change would prevent the death -- it would only be the post-hoc search of the phone that would be curtailed!

In a word, so what?  If little Suzy is dead then we have a suspect and a body; the fact that there was a murder hasn't changed.  That the police have to actually do their work the old-fashioned way doesn't change anything either, nor does access to someone's phone (or lack thereof) change DNA and other physical evidence.

Apple's executives apparently took this the same way I did, which is good.  Credit where credit is due.

But pay attention folks, because there are some 330 million of us here and complying with the DOJ's demands will get a hell of lot more of us killed than just little Suzy!

Apple-backed Rockstar ends patent war on Android, deal suggests

The news comes in part via a landmark court order in which a federal judge agrees to stay a series of lawsuits between Google and a patent consortium known asRockstar, that is primarily owned by Apple.

The Rockstar lawsuits threatened to further inflame a global patent battle over smartphones, and led Google to file a lawsuit of its own last Christmas in an attempt toshield phone makers.

Apple and the other Rockstar owners have apparently decided to defang Rockstar once and for all, instead of selling it to people who would operate it as a patent troll.

Some very interesting reader comments on this story.

"I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple's $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong. I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product. I'm willing to go thermonuclear war on this." 
      -- Steve Jobs

Apple has made a slight tweak to its App Store by replacing the "Free" button with the "Get" button.  Here's Why.

Apple has been criticized by European regulators over the shady world of in-app purchases.

The EC believes that a free label might mislead a customer regarding the true cost involved with in-app purchases.

Apps on the iOS and Mac App Store will no longer have the "Free" label even if the apps do not have any in-app purchase option.

Settlement in Apple Case Over E-Books Is Approved

A federal judge on Friday approved a settlement in which Apple could begin paying $400 million to as many as 23 million consumers related to charges that it violated antitrust law by conspiring with publishers to raise e-book prices and thwart efforts by Amazon.

Judge Denise L. Cote of Federal District Court in Manhattan approved an unusual settlement reached this summer in which Apple agreed to pay $400 million to consumers in cash and e-book credits, and $50 million to lawyers.

The case was first tried before Judge Cote in July 2013. In her verdict, she concluded that Apple had been fully aware of the publishers’ frustration with Amazon’s pricing of $9.99 for new releases because it was eroding the perceived value of their books. She said Apple used that leverage, combined with a tight deadline for the introduction of the iPad, to pressure publishers into agreeing to sell their books through Apple’s iBookstore.

“Apple seized the moment and brilliantly played its hand,” Judge Cote wrote in that ruling.

Apple's $450 million e-books settlement gets final approval

Although the settlement is final, Apple only has to pay that amount if it loses its appeal of a 2013 price-fixing ruling. If the appeal is successful, Apple will pay only $50 million to ebook purchasers and $20 million to attorneys.

The Masque security bug may pave the way for data to be stolen from legitimate app sources on iOS devices, according to Trend Micro researchers.
Trend Micro is a company that sells anti-malware software.

While Apple is unaware of any reported incidents of the bug, researchers say the flaw could theoretically install malware or steal user data from iPads or iPhones.

However, most users need not worry as malicious apps are barred from the relative safety of Apple's App Store — so if you keep downloads within this sphere, the chance of your device being hijacked is minimal.

5 Best Open Source Web Browser Security Apps

Now you can search every tweet that was ever sent

Next Year, One Billion Works Will Be Free to Use Online
The number of creations under open 'Creative Commons' licenses has doubled since 2010.

When Fitbit Is the Expert Witness
An upcoming court case will use fitness-tracking data to try and prove a plaintiff's claim, bringing us one step closer to the new age of quantified self incrimination.

Self-tracking wearable devices can store up data over time that could be used against you in court.

The first known court case using Fitbit activity data is underway. A law firm in Canada is using a client's Fitbit history in a personal injury claim.

wearables data could just as easily be used by insurers to deny disability claims, or by prosecutors seeking a rich source of self-incriminating evidence.

Will it change people's relationship to their wearable device when they know that it can be an informant?

Your outdated Internet browser is a gateway for cyber attacks

An Identity Theft Victim's Story:
'Someone Had Taken Over My Life'

Protect your medical data from identity theft

Hackers, notorious for stealing credit- and debit-card information from stores, and other thieves are increasingly targeting medical records, which can be more valuable because they include such coveted data as Social Security numbers, birth dates, driver's license numbers and checking-account numbers, experts say.

A good place to start protecting yourself, say experts, is refusing to provide your Social Security number on forms or elsewhere, which is the key to identity theft. Medical providers usually ask for this number, even though it is rarely needed.

Many hospitals also ask for driver's license numbers, says Peel, even though they are also seldom required.

shred any medical documents, say experts, such as old medical bills and records. Current medical papers and electronic records should be kept in a secure place.

Friday, November 21, 2014

The Manly Art of Turkey Frying

For the Manly Art of Turkey Frying, Goggles, Sobriety Are Recommended




For David Zima, there's nothing that spices up Thanksgiving dinner like a

little danger.


Come Thursday, he'll be standing outdoors on his suburban North Dallas

driveway, dropping the carcass of a raw turkey into a vat of boiling oil. As

the searing oil contacts the turkey's moist flesh, the pot will become a

caldron of churning, spewing grease and steam.


Mr. Zima, an emergency-room nurse, knows that getting splashed could mean

third-degree burns and a trip to the hospital. "It's too much fun," says the

38-year-old father of three.


Tasty and Thrilling


The practice of deep-frying a whole turkey has been a growing culinary trend

in recent years. Devotees swear that the cooking method yields an unusually

tender, juicy bird. Now it's drawing an especially passionate following

among male suburban thrill seekers.


Just the trappings -- propane gas burner, wire racks and hooks, eight-gallon

cooking pots, 10-inch syringes for injecting marinades and heavy-duty

thermometers -- cause an adrenaline rush in men who regard turkey frying as

an outdoor sport. They move their cars for fear of melting tires and banish

children and pets. Two people lower a huge bird suspended from a hook, amid

spattering and spitting, while the chief fryer cranks up the flame. "It's

like power-cooking," says Mr. Zima, who fried his first turkeys last year

before 50 awed relatives and friends.


Michael Markham, a university psychology professor in Miami, fried his first

turkey four years ago with a friend's help. The two men set up a new,

135,000-BTU propane burner in the backyard and donned goggles. Each took the

end of a 10-foot-pipe, with the turkey lashed to the middle, and slowly

lowered it into the frying pot. "There's something that just tickles your

testosterone when you have massive flames shooting out of a propane burner,"

he says.


Hog Fat and Lard


The suburbanites' embrace of an old Cajun tradition amuses Samuel Pickett,

71, who grew up in Louisiana and for years ran a fried-turkey catering

business in Jacksonville, Fla. The tradition, he says, started in

Louisiana's back country in the 1920s and 1930s. As a boy, he would pitch in

to help with the annual hog butchering. And as hog fat being rendered into

lard boiled away in a giant tub over a wood fire, someone would occasionally

toss in a chicken, goose or turkey, says Mr. Pickett.


"When it floated to the top, they'd pick it out and eat it," he recalls.


It works basically the same way today. In a typical setup, about five

gallons of now-trendy peanut oil is heated to 350 degrees or more. The

turkey is then slowly lowered into the pot. Recipes generally call for

frying three to four minutes per pound, or about 45 minutes for a 12-pound

bird that could take three to five hours to roast the old-fashioned way.

Then you take it out, drain off the oil and eat.


Some chefs favor precautions like fireproof gloves, long-sleeved shirts,

face shields, and even steel-toed boots. When the moisture inside the turkey

hits the hot oil, there is an eruption of steam and hot grease. If you

immerse the turkey too quickly, an oil splash can burn you to the bone. The

cook must pay constant attention to the temperature of the oil lest it catch

fire. Last year a man left his backyard turkey pot unattended for a few

minutes. "When he came back, he noticed the back of the house was on fire,"

says a New Orleans Fire Department spokesman. The department now dispenses

safety tips for frying turkeys. And in St. Louis, Florence Bockhorst

remembers the Christmas Eve two years ago when a neighbor's house burned

down as they tried to fry a turkey on their front porch. In all her 89

years, Ms. Bockhorst says, she hadn't heard of cooking a turkey that way.

"Everybody thought it was very peculiar. And we weren't about to try it,"

she adds.


Jimmy Merriweather fries dozens of turkeys each year for family and friends

at his radiator shop in Littlefield, Texas, near Lubbock. One year a crimp

in the propane-gas hose caused a leak -- and a fire. "It really started to

blazing, and we all started to run, and then I figured I better go back and

turn the burner off," he recalls. Disaster was averted, the hose was fixed,

and the turkey fry resumed.


As the popularity of fried turkey has spread, Sherwood Golemon, proprietor

of the Cajun Shoppe in Lake Charles, La., has fielded more and more strange

calls from all over the country.


"Down here in south Louisiana, we just assume that everyone knows how to

cook outside. This is not true," says Mr. Golemon, who remembers one caller

from New York City who wanted to buy one of his $179 turkey-frying rigs. Mr.

Golemon refused to sell it to him when he found out the man wanted to fry

his turkey in the living room of his 14th-floor apartment.


Mr. Golemon rarely hears from women, though "they occasionally call and ask

silly questions, about nutritional value and that sort of thing." And he is

a little scornful of men who dress up like firefighters before facing their

fried turkey. Common sense is all most people need to fry a turkey safely.

His golden rule is simple: "I recommend a little bit of sobriety."


But frying turkeys is such a social event that many a cook has ended up more

marinated than a bird injected with everything from Coca-Cola to tequila. In

lieu of watching the clock, a friend advised tax attorney Jim Hall, 37, of

Eagen, Minn., to "heat the oil for one beer, then drop the turkey in the oil

for about two beers."


Mr. Hall approached his first backyard turkey fry two years ago with extreme

caution, wearing protective gloves and making sure somebody was tending the

pot at all times. After two years' experience under his belt, he is more

relaxed about the procedure this year, though he still describes it as "a

very violent cooking method."


The men, he says, take care of the turkey frying. "And the women, well, they


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Two Weeks until Thanksgiving is over and Competitive Holiday Shopping Begins

(This is a holiday tradition of mine. My cousin Judy in Missouri sent this to me. If you cousin sent you something equally amusing, put it in the comments or e-mail it to me and I will post it.)



Dear Family & Friends,


I know that you were eager to accept our family's invitation to Thanksgiving dinner when you found out that the famous Martha Stewart would be joining us. However, due to scheduling conflicts beyond her control, Ms. Stewart finds that she is unable to grace our table this year. With that in mind, there will be a few minor changes regarding the meal and decor, as outlined below. Please be aware of them, and adjust your appetite and dress appropriately.


Thank you.


1)  Our driveway will not be lined with homemade, paper bag luminaries. After several trial runs and two visits from the fire department, it was decided that, no matter how cleverly done, rows of flaming lunch sacks do not have the desired welcoming effect.


2)  Once inside, please note that the entry space will not be decorated with swags of Indian corn and fall foliage. Instead, we included our dog in decorating by having him track in colorful autumn leaves from the back    yard. The mud was his idea.


3)  The dining table will not be covered with expensive linens, fancy china, or crystal goblets. If possible, we will use dishes that match and everyone will get a fork. Since this is Thanksgiving, we will refrain from using the paper Sponge Bob dinner plates, the leftover Halloween napkins, and our plastic cup collection.


4)  Our centerpiece will not be a tower of fresh fruit and flowers. Instead we will be proudly displaying a hedgehog-like decoration hand-crafted from the finest construction paper and pine cones. The artist assures me it is a turkey, albeit one without wings, legs, or a beak.


5)  We will be dining somewhat later than planned. However, our daughter will entertain you while you wait. I'm sure she will be happy to share every choice comment her mother made regarding Thanksgiving, pilgrims, stuffing choices, the turkey hotline, and, especially, her husband. Please remember that most of these comments were made at 7:00 AM upon discovering that said husband had only remembered to pull the turkey from the freezer at 6:00 AM, and that the thing was still hard enough to cut diamonds.


6)  As an accompaniment to our daughter's recital of these events, I will play a recording of Native American tribal drumming. Curiously, the tribal drumming sounds a great deal like a frozen turkey in a clothes dryer, but that only enhances the holiday appropriateness. If our daughter should mention that we don't own a recording of Native American tribal drumming, ignore her. She's only nine; what does she know?


7)  A dainty silver bell will not be rung to announce the start of our feast. We have chosen to keep our traditional method of assembling when the smoke alarm goes off.


8)  There will be no formal seating arrangement. When the smoke alarm sounds, please gather around the table and sit where you like. In the    spirit of harmony, we will ask all the children to sit at a separate table. In a separate room. Next door. And I would like to take this opportunity to remind our younger diners that "passing the rolls" is neither a football play nor an excuse to bean your cousin in the head with bread.


9)  The turkey will not be carved at the table. I know you have seen the Norman Rockwell image of one person carving a turkey in front of a crowd of appreciative onlookers. Such a scene may occur somewhere in America , but it won't be happening at our dinner table. For safety reasons, the turkey will be carved in the kitchen at a private ceremony. I stress "private", meaning do not, under any circumstances, enter the kitchen to laugh at me. Do not send small, unsuspecting children, or older, helpful grandparents into the kitchen to check on my progress. I have a very large, very sharp knife. The turkey is unarmed. It stands to reason that I will eventually win the battle. When I do, we will eat.


10)  For the duration of the meal, we will refer to the gravy by its lesser-known name: Kraft Cheese Sauce. If a young diner questions you regarding the origins or makeup of the Kraft Cheese Sauce, smile kindly and say that you know the answer, but it's a secret that can't be revealed to them until they are 18.


11)  Instead of offering a choice among 12 different scrumptious desserts, we will be serving the traditional pumpkin pie, garnished with whipped cream and dog tongue marks. You still have a choice: take it or leave it.


That concludes our list of alterations.    Again, I apologize that Martha will not be joining us this year.


Saturday, November 15, 2014

Senior Correspondent Arnold Woodworth's Weekend Update

The iPhone 6 Is Selling Like Crazy

How Apple Pay helped me catch a fraudulent credit-card charge

Apple Just Fixed A Bug On iPhone That Put Undercover Cops At Risk

Previously, anyone who switched from iPhone to Android faced a huge problem: unless you executed this complicated system of steps exactly right, your phone number stayed inside Apple's iMessage system and no one using an iPhone was able to reach you by text. The texts stayed trapped inside iMessage, undelivered.

Apple is now the defendant in two class action lawsuits on behalf of Android customers whose messages were lost by Apple.

Apple thinks iOS 'Masque Attack' isn't such a big deal

The iPad Air 2 is, without hyperbole, the best tablet on the market.

I thought the iPhone 6+ was too big; I was wrong

Apple is revitalizing its iPad division to target companies, but it may not have what they're looking for

What companies want — and aren't getting from Apple — is customized software for their devices.

Apple has promised to develop "100 industry-specific enterprise solutions" as part of its IBM partnership.

Apple's A8X iPad chip causing big problems for Intel, Qualcomm, Samsung and Nvidia

Apple will increasingly hold onto the high end in tablets with few legitimate competitors, while its tablet rivals all fight for scraps at the low end. Vendors who do want to enter the high end tablet space will face chip options limited to Intel's expensive x86 chips or very low end ARM chips aimed at powering phones rather than more sophisticated tablets. 

The profits Apple is earning from iPad sales are being aggressively reinvested back into the rapid development of Apple's own A-series chips, which no other vendor has access to.

What Steve Wozniak Got Wrong About The iPhone 6

"Apple could have had a much bigger share of the smartphone market if it had a larger-screen iPhone for the past three years," said Wozniak.

But the Apple cofounder is missing an important point.
Apple is almost never first-to-market in any product category. Their strategy is to come up with dramatic, generational improvements to products that others have done not as well.

Jony Ive: Apple isn't here to make money. And students shouldn't use computers so much

Firefox Develops a Case of Selective Amnesia -- You Select

"Forget gives you an easy way to tell Firefox to clear out some of your recent activity," explained Firefox Vice President Johnathan Nightingale. "Instead of asking a lot of complex technical questions, Forget asks you only one: How much do you want to forget? Once you tell Firefox you want to forget the last five minutes, or two hours, or 24 hours, it takes care of the rest."

6 Reasons Why You Should Quit Facebook

Microsoft Windows Is Now More Than 30 Years Old — Here's How Drastically It's Changed Over The Years

Why you'll finally be using bitcoin soon

digital currency saves time and money when shopping and transferring money.

"The 'blockchain' - the engine on which Bitcoin is built - is a new kind of distributed consensus system that allows transactions, or other data, to be securely stored and verified without any centralized authority at all, because (to grossly oversimplify) they are validated by the entire network. Those transactions don't have to be financial; that data doesn't have to be money. The engine that powers bitcoin can be used for a whole array of other applications."

Elon Musk calls AI "our biggest existential threat." He's WRONG.

Phishers' Attacks Pay Off Nicely

The most successful phishing attacks manage to dupe their victims a full 45 percent of the time, according to a study released last week by Google.

On average, phishing's success rate is about 14 percent, but even the most obvious scams still manage to lure 3 percent of the people targeted to a fake website and convince them to turn over personal information, the report found.

About 20 percent of the hijacked accounts identified in Google's study were accessed within 30 minutes of the hacker's acquisition of its login information. Once inside, hijackers spent more than 20 minutes there, often changing the password to lock out the true owner, searching for other account details, such as bank information and social media accounts, and scamming new victims.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

LIbreOffice has some new tricks

The latest version of LibreOffice,, has added some old Apple file formats to the plethora of formats it already reads. 

You could already read ClarisWorks/Appleworks text documents and save them in OpenDocument (*.odt) or Word or .rtf format.. Now you can open ClarisWorks/Appleworks spreadsheets and save them in OpenDocument (*.ods) or Excel format.

In addition, LibreOffice will open and display ClarisWorks/Appleworks vector drawings. You can’t edit them in its Draw module, though, unless you copy and paste each element into a new LO Draw document. 

You can export in JPEG or PNG or PDF formats. Go to File—> Export for this. 

I even tried opening a database file, one of the old MacValley membership files. The results were unsatisfactory. 

And yes, LO works the same in Windows  as it does in OS X and Linux. 

Tom Briant

Editor, MacValley Voice


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Senior Correspondent Arnold Woodworth's Weekend Roundup for November 7,8,9, 2014

Here's What Some iPhone 6 Plus Owners Are Saying About The Phone's Unwieldy Size

Despite their complaints, most of them say they wouldn't trade it in for a smaller iPhone 6.

RANKED: The Best Smartphones In The World

iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus are first and second, respectively

The Apple iPad Air 2 Review

An iPad best for work, not play

My Apple iPad has quickly become an indispensable tool for work. For the last two years I’ve worked from an iPad on a daily basis.

I spent two weeks testing the iPad Air 2, and at the end of my time with the device, I found myself equally impressed and disappointed.

Instead of picking up my iPad to read an article or watch a video on YouTube, I would find myself remaining with the iPhone, the experience just as pleasant.

I’ve spent countless hours and dollars researching apps and accessories in order to make the iPad work for me. I have forced the iPad to fit into my life. The average person is less likely to invest that kind of time. For those people, that burden lies at Apple’s feet.

Apple wants you to update to iOS 8 even though you probably still can’t

the main reason for slower iOS 8 adoption is the simple fact that millions of iPhone users are simply not able to install the update because of the amount free storage required to install the new software over the air.

CNN Anchors Propped Up Their iPads With Surface Pro 3 Tablets During Election-Night Coverage

the single best way to invest in the Smartphone and App Revolutions is by simply buying Google and Apple.

I'm convinced that each remain must-own stocks for any tech investor and here's why - the App Revolution is just getting started.

The Wearables Revolution is coming and total sales of wearables will be bigger than the total sales of smartphones and tablets combined five years from now.

stick with Apple AAPL and Google GOOG. They're still by far the best ways to play the Wearables Revolution phase of the still burgeoning App Revolution which is now well on its way to becoming the single largest market in the history of the planet.

I know that there's a lot of focus today on Apple's malware problem, but here's a "Flip-It" take on it for you - the reason it's so shocking is because it's finally happened to Apple on a big scale. If and when the stock were to take a serious hit on this news, I'd probably buy some more.

The Steve Jobs Guide To Manipulating People And Getting What You Want

How Steve Jobs Broke All Of Richard Branson's Rules

Richard Branson's leadership style is the opposite of Steve Jobs'. But they both work.

What do the management styles of Virgin founder Richard Branson and Apple's Steve Jobs have in common? If you said, "absolutely nothing," then you're on the right track.

3 reasons the PC is still alive

Apple's market share of PC market highest since 1995

Despite Apple's record Mac sales, the category was just 8% of the much more colossal market for iOS devices, which saw an all-time high of 243 million units sold last quarter.

New Apple-focused malware uses Macs to infect iPhones

Palo Alto Networks called the malicious software "WireLurker" because it waits for a device running Apple's iOS mobile operating system to connect via USB to a Mac laptop or desktop.

It's called WireLurker because of the malware's ability to sense when you plug an iPhone or iPad into your computer running OS X.

Luckily the malware seems to be targeting users in China right now.

Apple-Pestering WireLurker Banished for Now

Palo Alto Networks on Wednesday reported that more than 400 apps infected with a malicious program it calls "WireLurker" have been downloaded 356,104 times by Chinese Mac owners from Maiyadi, an online app store unaffiliated with Apple.

The malware does no harm to the Macs it infects but when the computer connects via USB to an iOS device -- an iPhone or iPad -- it delivers its malicious payload.

The malware does no harm to the Macs it infects but when the computer connects via USB to an iOS device -- an iPhone or iPad -- it delivers its malicious payload.

Although potentially thousands of Chinese iPhones are infected with WireLurker, chances are low that it could spread to the United States.

"It looks like they were really targeting Chinese users exclusively," Olson said.

"We expect these tactics to be used in future pieces of malware," Olson said, "but for now, this version of WireLurker looks like it has been shut down."

WireLurker Mac OS X Malware Shut Down

Researchers at Palo Alto Networks confirmed that the command and control infrastructure supporting WireLurker has been shut down and Apple has revoked a legitimate digital certificate used to sign WireLurker code and allow it to infect non-jailbroken iOS devices.

The ultimate goal of the WireLurker attacks, which were limited to China, is unknown but the malware was capable of stealing system information and data stored on mobile devices. Other personal information such as credentials or banking transactions was spared.

WireLurker iPhone Malware Tried to Hit Windows First

Apparently, WireLurker initially targeted Windows computers in a failed attempt to infect iOS devices that connected to those PCs. Later, its creators retooled WireLurker to run on Macs and successfully infect non-jailbroken iPhones. Apple has blocked a crucial part of the process WireLurker uses to spread to iOS devices, but that doesn't mean the WireLurker menace is contained just yet.,news-19888.html

How one determined mom got kids in her small community to code

hope came after watching an inspiring video from make the rounds in social media. has done an excellent job de-mystifying computer science, and creating programs that can be easily adapted into the classroom.

Easy deal, right?  Wrong.  Teachers don't have the time or resources to manage another program.

So I posted a message on Facebook.  Within 24 hours, we had nearly 100 kids sign up.

Armed with the knowledge that entrepreneurs can make quick decisions, I took what was perceived as an education problem and re-framed it as a community problem.

How Homeless People Use Technology: A Photo Essay On Street Poverty And Consumer Gadgets

many homeless people use gadgets to stay connected, search for jobs, and pursue their own creative interests.

Why do so many people still text and drive, even though it's been shown to be more dangerous than drunken driving? 

If you track the history of drinking and driving, and the drinking and driving movement, there are some very strong analogies. Thirty or 40 years ago, the attitude toward drinking and driving was very much where texting and driving is now. Drinking and driving is unacceptable, not just from a legal perspective but from a social perspective.  But we're not there yet with texting.

People completely distort the neurological data that clearly show that it's impossible to drive safely while you're texting.

Facebook has created the ability for users to connect directly to the social network via anonymising "dark web" service Tor.
Facebook claims that users can access the site without losing the cryptographic protections of Tor.

That's a lie.
The moment you sign into your account, Facebook knows who you are.  Tor can't change that.
Facebook, which then can (and will!) comply with any government demand for that data.

It's all a way to trick you into defeating the purpose of Tor.

18 Ancient Websites You Won't Believe Still Exist

Now it's your new television that's spying on you.

Hundreds Of 'Dark' Web Sites Seized In Massive Global Government Takedown

Both Of The Men Accused Of Running The Silk Road Made The Exact Same Mistake

it was the simple mistake of using their personal email accounts for activities related to the Silk Road that made the FBI's job easy, and likely led directly to their capture.



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