To lie or keep in hiding, as for some evil reason. To move or go in a mean, stealthy manner.
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Microsoft released the latest version of Windows called Millennium Edition, or Windows ME. The first link above is to Microsoft's home page for the product with details of the new features that ME has over Windows 98. Click on the link "Top 10 Reasons to Upgrade". The second link is a review of Windows ME by ZDnet, with the last page being a must read: "Is This Update for You?"
There really isn't much in ME that you can't get other ways. If you go to windowsupdate.microsoft.com and install Internet Explorer 5.5 and Windows Media Player 7.0 to Windows 98 you are most of the way there, and most of the other new features in ME are available with freeware and shareware programs.
On the other hand, an upgrade CD from 98 to ME is only around $50 so it isn't big money to try it out and get the new features. But there is one reason not to: ME as shipped from Microsoft eliminates the ability to boot your machine into a real DOS mode, and it ignores most statements in CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT. Microsoft did this deliberately to get better reliability and better speed in booting and shutting down, so for the average user this might be a good thing. If you run old DOS programs, however, or you are a power skulker who likes to go into DOS mode from time to time and tweak the settings in CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT, then you had better think carefully about converting to ME. You will lose those capabilities and may not gain much in return.
It might be possible to skulk the best of both worlds. The third link above is a mysterious, but well respected, page with instructions on how to modify the Windows ME boot processes so that statements in CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT will be honored and the old 98 boot menu option to boot into DOS (Command Prompt) will still work. Many newsgroup messages point to this link and claim the method works, but the page itself is anonymous and one would think that something so unique and important would be on something better than a Geocities page.
WebSkulker hasn't tried this yet, but people on newsgroups and Jr. Skulker Stuart Shostak have. Stuart had mixed luck with it: it seemed to work as advertised, but a CONFIG.SYS setting that he needed for an old DOS program didn't seem to work in ME even with the patch, and he had some problems shutting down the system.
The patch can be reversed easily so there is no reason not to try it, but you must be sure to back up the originally three files that get altered. Then you can reverse the patch simply by copying the three original files back to the root directory. Let us say this again: the instructions on the patch page neglect to mention making a copy of all the files first, so remember to do this!!!!
Ms. Cat ran across this interesting History of Hacking page by MSNBC.
This service is only available in New York City right now so WebSkulker mentions it more for a glimpse into the future than for something you jr. skulkers could use today. Modo is a small alphanumeric pager-like device that you purchase for $99 and after that all service is free. The Modo system sends out information every night over pager frequencies to keep an up-to-date database about the city you are in (New York only at the moment) and the events going on in it. The Modo interface is very much like a web browser to let you find the information you need easily. Play with the Flash demo on the first link above to see how it works. The second link is to the company behind Modo.
WebSkulker mentioned the iTag service in last Wednesday's issue. At that time, the site and the service seemed alive and well. But in the meantime, Jr. Skulker Lisa noticed that their web site now says they are discontinuing service.
TellSurf is yet another system where you sign up on their web site, then dial a toll-free number from wherever you are to retrieve information via speech recognition and voice response. The name of the web site, 888telsurf.com, is quite misleading because you would think that the toll-free number that you would dial is 1-888-tel-surf, but it isn't. That number gives you a live operator who will register you for the system instead of using the web site. Once you are registered, they give you the real phone numbers for dialing into the system. We cheated and listed them above. According to the web site, they are still rolling out the service nationwide and the 877 number might only work from inside California. Anyone can use the 818 number to play with the system.
"TelSurf provides a broad range of Internet communication,
information and entertainment services that members can access from any
telephone, without using a PC, modem or Internet Service Provider. From
the TelSurf home page members can access services like Pro Scoreboard and
Stock Quotes as well as access other TelSurf web pages for Entertainment,
Message Center, News and myTelSurf. TelSurf also enables a member to
access certain 3rd party Web pages, like My Yahoo!, via the telephone by
reading portions of the page as the member directs.
Jr. Skulker Batteryman told us about this kit for building your own portable MP3 player with the music files stored on a hard drive so you can carry hundreds of hours of music with you. This is definitely a work in progress and a project for the jr. skulker who is technically inclined because you need to build at least your own case and power supply and handle a lot of details about the format of the hard drive and firmware installation. Also the author is still actively working on the firmware so many of the functions are limited at this moment. If you like soldering, you can buy the main circuit board and components as a kit and solder it all together yourself, or for only $10 more, you can buy the main board fully assembled and tested.
Although in theory this could be carried around and run on batteries, the author intends it more as a component in a home stereo system or an attachment to a car stereo where it could be powered by the car battery. Besides battery life, WebSkulker doesn't think a normal hard drive would be very happy bouncing up and down while you walk or jog or skulk.
Both links go to the same site, so whether you are an anti-Bush Democrat or an anti-Gore Republican, you can click on a link that feels right. Go here for Pure Uncut Satire on the presidential race and everything else in the news.
Thanks to Jr. Skulker Bob Rowell for telling us about this.
Here are some of the classic questions that were asked of
the Sydney Olympic Committee via their Web site, with answers supplied
Q: I want to walk from Perth to Sydney - can I follow the
railroad tracks? (Sweden)
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