Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Computing/2007 February 19

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February 19[edit]

WiFi card for Linux (ubuntu)[edit]

I've reached the brink of insanity trying to get my Wifi card to work under Ubuntu. Now I'd just like to buy a card that is known to work well on a PC running Ubuntu. Can you recommend a card or chipset that will be the most straightforward to get working? ike9898 00:49, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

I use a Linksys WMP54G and found it easy to set up in Ubuntu. All you should need to do is Enable the card, unless you have a static IP in which case you just have to supply the correct numbers, which isn't too complicated. Either way it's no hassle to get set up. --Kiltman67 05:01, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
I use ndiswrapper and then use whatever network card I feel like using. It wraps the Windows network device driver, allowing it to work in Linux. --Kainaw (talk) 06:12, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Anecdote about the 'Apple calculator construction kit'[edit]

I read a great webpage a little while ago telling the tale of the development of Apple's calculator's UI for the very first Macintosh (?), and about how it morphed into a 'calculator construction kit' because the lead developer was unhappy with any of his underlings' offerings, so he had to make the UI himself. However, googling for some terms I was fairly sure were in the article yields either far too many irrelevant results ("apple calculator 'construction kit' interface grey" - try it for yourself!) or miss out the article I wanted (""calculator construction kit" apple" - ditto). Does anyone know what I'm talking about, and have the capacity to point me in the correct direction? 01:04, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

The story rings vague bells, I'd be surprised if it's not one of the anecdotes here: Provider uk 02:22, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Here you go: It was a "set" not a "kit", guess this would be why you couldn't track it down Provider uk 02:24, 21 February 2007 (UTC)


Update: By the_creative_one.

There was a program not by Apple Called Calculator Construction Kit .
CCK was produced by Dubl-Click.
Its products were: ArtRoundup; Calculator Construction Kit; ClickChange; ClickTrax; Icon Mania; Menu Fonts; WetPaint [also Newton]. The company no longer exist.

The developer was Clifton Claude Joyce.
You can find information about him at Brown Family History part 1 (Half way down the page.)[1]

CCK ran on Mac System 5.x to 7.x (I believe this to be right?)

You could build a calculator using pre-built parts or provide your own programming using the built-in language.
I created several useful calculators for special needs. I sure wish Cliff's company was still around. I would love to have a new version of CCK.

Monday 10 November 2008 01:03:51 CST

Scrammbled text????[edit]

When I look at pages for your site much of the text like quotations, etc., appear to be scrammbled like 02:03, 19 February 2007 (UTC)qwvufg"qh"wu"dq{u.talic text

Colleen Stewart <e-mail removed>

Your internet browser's website encoding settings may be misconfigured. Ensure that the setting is set to Western European.
--Greenday121 02:21, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
I have taken the courtesy of removing your e-mail address to avoid spam. Wikipedia is a highly indexed website. Splintercellguy 03:14, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

How to type in Japanese or Korean characters?[edit]

Hey there I was just wondering if anyone knows where I can download a program that lets me type in Japanese or Korean characters (and quickly switch back to Roman letters)? --Candy-Panda 04:08, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Most programs/operating systems have an IME for entering CJK (Chinese/Japanese/Korean) characters. --Kainaw (talk) 04:36, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
If you are on Mac OS X just load System Preferences, click on international, and follow it. [Mαc Δαvιs] X (How's my driving?) ❖ 08:01, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
Thanks, but I have a follow-up question, how do I turn on and use the IME? --Candy-Panda 09:29, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
If you are using Windows, What is an IME (Input Method Editor) and how do I use it? and related pages on may help you. --Kusunose 06:16, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
  • Thank you Kusunose! --Candy-Panda 07:53, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Un-sending e-mail?[edit]

I (think I) heard a while back that a certain e-mail service could un-send your e-mail under certain conditions; if the recipient hadn't read the e-mail yet, you would be able to take it back. Is this possible, and if so, what service might do that?--the ninth bright shiner talk 15:41, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

You can't take back good old fashioned e-mail on the Internet, it is dust scattered in the wind. Any system that does, is either a closed corporate system, or some sort of web-mail thing. I haven't really heard of this taking off because of all the security implications. --Zeizmic 16:23, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
The only sort of service that could do this would have to be a service used by the recipient, not the sender of the mail. There is no service that can cause an arbitrary email recipient's mail program to delete an already-received mail. --TotoBaggins 16:34, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
I could've sworn I saw it once on AOL or something...--the ninth bright shiner talk 16:41, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
At some companies where I've worked, and where I used something other than the official or popular mail client, I would regularly get boilerplate messages saying things like "Joe Blow wishes to recall the message 'I am an idiot'". The implications here are that (1) Joe had a button he could press that automatically sent out this "recall" message, and (2) there was some software somewhere -- perhaps in the official email client -- which would act on the recall messages. I think this was a Microsoft Exchange or Outlook thing, but never having used either of those directly, I'm not sure. —Steve Summit (talk) 16:48, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
Yes, that was (is?) the Microsoft Email system. We used to laugh when those arrived long after the damage was done.
Atlant 20:58, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
Yes, AOL does it[2]; but of course only for emails from one AOL account to another AOL account, and only if it has not been read. But, again, AOL is a closed proprietary email system. Anything actually sent over the Internet cannot be undone. --Spoon! 22:05, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Outlook/Exchange allows you to do this as long as the recipient is an account on the same Exchange server. -lethe talk + 16:52, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

We use Novell Groupwise at work. It has an option for you to "Retract mail", which will automatically remove it from the inbox of any recipients who haven't opened the mail yet. Obviously this only applies to "internal email" sent to colleagues within the company (i.e. the message is still on our company's servers), messages sent outside of our own mail servers cannot be retracted. Zunaid©® 12:57, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

GIF pictures[edit]

how can i pause a gif picture at some scene and resume it again ? and thanks in advance..

Any program that lets you edit animated gif images (such as The Gimp or Photoshop) will let you do this. --TotoBaggins 16:28, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

thank you Toto.. I did it.. with photoshop..

UTF-8 .. I think ?[edit]

I just spent long hours preparing a web page on freewebspace ( its free ) , and - gradually - the text - which was originally written in Arabic - Began to look like scribbles !! I assume the problem is related to encoding and multilingual support , but I don't know if this problem can be resolved somehow without losing all the informaton I've saved ... Please help me anyone ?! 16:47, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

It's probably an encoding issue. Providing a link to a page with the affected text would probably be helpful. -- mattb @ 2007-02-20T15:06Z

AMD Question[edit]

Why is it that AMD stock has been on a horrible skid recently, at least the past year? Don't they make highly demanded chips, and have good future prospects? Thanks, 18:08, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

It's my understanding that the ultra-competitive price war with Intel has really hurt their margins, and thus, their profits. The market doesn't like that. SubSeven 19:08, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

CSS Float question[edit]

I am trying to figure out how I can make the background color of a sidebar, which is assigned float left, expand the whole length of the container div. For example, look at [3]. If I apply a background-color attribute to either "leftnav" or "rightnav", the color stops right under the padding of the text. What I want to do is have the background-color extend all the way to the footer. Am I going to have to do this with an image placed in the container div?-Andrew c 18:41, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

You can't, unless you have a fixed height. Otherwise you will need a faux background applied to the parent element to do the effect. --antilivedT | C | G 03:24, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
  • Are you trying to make something like with a floating box colored like this as a result? If the color stops under the text, you either added the code to the "#leftnav p" or "#rightnav p" bit or it is a issue with your browser not properly showing what it is supposed to. If you go to my userpage and email me the code, I will take a look at it. - Mgm|(talk) 10:21, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

Oldest web site[edit]

What is the oldest web site still in continuous operation? Edison 20:36, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Well, here is a list of the 100 oldest dot coms. Going through the list you can go see which are still up. Vespine 21:42, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
The first web page was a test page; ISOC has it in their archives somewhere --frothT 21:59, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
I found the somewhere! From the oldest website was however this URL no longer works - an archived version is here . I'd say that this would make CERN's website at the oldest (unsurprising, given that Tim Berners-Lee was an employee of theirs). Cheers, Davidprior 23:19, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Windows Vista[edit]

Can you tell me what software works with Vista

Scoping your question would help very much. Splintercellguy 22:35, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
Try namespaces for all of your scope resolution needs:
using namespace Windows_Vista
Can you tell me what software works with Vista
--frothT 05:58, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

If your loking for games try Games for Windows A lot of companys will start putting small vista logos on the side of there boxes Partnershope this helps --Nerdd 16:11, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

AVG v Windows Firewall[edit]

Which do you all think is better? The comparison articles on wiki are absolutely useless for anyone who isn't a majore computer guy. Thanks, 22:21, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

I agree that our articles simply can't go down to the necessary level, and still be something that anybody would want to write! However, I've always found that one needs to do a little homework, in order to ask a question that anybody would want to answer. For example, your question is comparing apples and oranges. I can't answer it, without missing the target, and perhaps nobody can... --Zeizmic 22:27, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
What? AVG is an Antivirus, Windows Firewall is a firewall. --frothT 23:04, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
And even if they were able to be compared, it wouldn't be encyclopedic to say that one was better than the other - although references of the opinion that one may be better than the other might be plausible to be added. x42bn6 Talk 23:16, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
What comparison article? If you send us to it we might be able to translate. -- 23:35, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
AVG won't help you if a hacker tries to take over your system and Windows firewall won't help you if you get sent an email with a virus in it. If I could ONLT choose one, i'd run the firewall. If you are very safe in your browsing and email habits you can reduce your chance of getting a virus, but no amount of anti virus software will stop hackers stuffing up your computer. Vespine 01:01, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
Unless they are talking about the version of AVG that has its own firewall, as the AVG article describes. -- 02:24, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

What I mean is that AVG 7.5 complete or whatever comes with its own firewall. It says, upon installation, that either the Windows firewall or the AVG one can run, not both. Which, I was wondering, works better? Also, unrelated, you can't be affected by a viral email you dont open, right? Do you have to download anything from the email to get the virus? Doesn't gmail protect against most viruses? Sorry for the lack of clarification earlier on. And what I mean by the comparison article is that there are articles comparing various firewalls that are just a series of technical charts--completely obstruse stuff. This is the same for the media player comparison sites and other stuff. I expect that the majority of people who need to turn to wikipedia for information on firewalls and media players etc aren't knowledgable enough about computers to know a quarter of what those charts are quantifying. Thanks, at any rate, for all your help, and if any of my clarifications help you answer the original question, I'd love to have a better picture of whether I should keep Windows firewall or go with AVG. Thanks, everybody, 03:47, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

You are far better off buying a separate firewall-router for the firewall portion. Then you can use AVG for virus checking, and turn off the MS firewall. --Zeizmic 13:26, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
Also, if you are behind a router, chances are pretty good you don't need a software firewall. If you are plugged straight into a DSL/Cable modem however, then a software firewall would be a good idea. Cyraan 18:20, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
The AVG firewall will likely have more features, but both will provide essentially the same protection vs network attacks. The AVG firewall might (or might not, its not of significant enough importance for me to check right now...) employ fingerprint-based scanning for suspicious network traffic, but in all honesty either will serve your purposes adequately. If you have purchased AVG complete package, you may as well use the AVG firewall included. For most users, a software firewall actually is of benefit even if protected by a hardware router, as it will allow you to block outbound connections as well as inbound, giving you some protection against your personal data being sent out by malicious programs that have not been picked up by the virus scanner. Provider uk 23:44, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
I haven't seen anything which compares the two or discusses differences in their features/abilities/etc. If you have something of that nature, it would be useful to post. As it is I don't see anything to believe one is better than the other. -- 02:24, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Thanks, says the same guy actually logged in on a computer with a different IP address. And does anybody have an answer to the second question I snuck in there? This one: "Also, unrelated, you can't be affected by a viral email you dont open, right? Do you have to download anything from the email to get the virus? Doesn't gmail protect against most viruses?" Thanks for any further answers. Sashafklein 05:39, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

adobe photoshop[edit]

can i get adobe photoshop anywhere for free?

Not legally, no. --h2g2bob 23:26, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
You can get a trial version at It probably has some limitations, like not being able to save or only being usable for a limited amount of time. You can also get, for free, The GIMP, which can do much of what Photoshop does. -- 23:33, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

well what i am trying to do is make a lightsaber. i know how, i just need adobe photoshop. will GIMP work too?

Yes, you can easily do that kind of thing with the Gimp. It's my opinion that while the Gimp is not really a suitable Photoshop replacement for a graphics professional, it is more than enough for anyone *but* a professional. The book Grokking the Gimp is really excellent. --TotoBaggins 05:03, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
I'd say go illegal. They charge too much anyway.

yeah thats funny, but i really want serious help for this. don't post dumb comments. i don't know how to get it illegaly anyway.

you can get adobe photoshop starter edition for free from adobe's website, they email you an unlock code it Jackacon 10:26, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

I read it that you don't want to retouch photos, but want to create original artwork. If you create the lightsaber in Gimp, you'll be using the airbrush, and you'll need something like a Wacom tablet. I would create it 3D in Art of illusion. I do all my technical illustrations for articles with that. --Zeizmic 13:04, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
There are different ways to make lightsabers in Photoshop -- some of them will be easily translateable to the GIMP, some of them will not (i.e. ones which use the Lighting Effects tool of Photoshop, which I don't think exists for the GIMP). You might have to adjust your way of doing it. Anyway these are basically your options -- there's nothing other than the GIMP which is free and has quite similar capabilities as Photoshop in this regard. -- 02:21, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Sure there's lighting effects for GIMP, they might not be default filters though. I'd been a happy Photoshopper since 3.0, until I realized that GIMP was doing everything most power-users require of Photoshop for free. The logo may not be nearly as pretty as Photoshop's (which I think is a huge oversight), but I've never really looked back. 06:22, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Is GIMP for windows? because every time i try to download it somewhere it says that it failed. Can someone give me a link or something? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

[4]. Follow the instructions; you need GIMP and one of the two GTK packages; only use the lower one if you have old version of Windows 98, ME, or NT. -- Consumed Crustacean (talk) 02:59, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Using GIMP to make lightsabers. Easy. I've done it tons of times. Click for width and length, path to selection, and run it. -Wooty Woot? contribs 03:52, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

thanx a lot for the help, and thanx for the link woot.