The Bug Report

The only Bug that's good for your computer!
A Publication of the Greater South Bay PC Users Group
Volume 21 Number 06
June 2003

A monthly publication of
GS-BUG Inc. (c) copyright 1996.
Reproduction of any material herein by any means is expressly prohibited unless written permission is granted. Exception: Articles may be reprinted by other users groups in unaltered form if credit is given to the author and the original publication.

Editor - Kay Burton






by Dr. Garry Sexton



Ever want to find medical information on the internet but did not know what sites to go to, well here are some you can try.
We will start with a list of search engines and then the medical sites.

Revised 6/2/03



Searching medical literature on the web
Search for journal reference with links to records with full text version of 13 test books links to Tox net, clinical trials, consumer health sites, clinical alerts
 full text online 300 medical subscriptions either fixed-fee or pay as you go

 Review of the best randomized controlled trials on specific clinical questions

Abstracts only free
Database of abstracts of reviews of effectiveness (DARE) FREE
ACP Journal Club free recent issues
British Medical Journal free full text

MAJOR PRIMARY CARE SOCIETIES AND GOVERNMENT AGENCIES American Academy of Family Physicians American Academy of Nurse Practitioners American Academy of Pediatrics American Academy of Physicians Assistants American College of Physicians American Medical Association Society of General Internal Medicine

GOVERNMENT AGENCIES   Agency for Health Care Policy and Research CancerNet: Nation Cancer Institute   Center for Disease Control   Food and Drug Administration   Nation Institutes of Health

American Cancer Society

information on quacks and scams

Free Clinical Information for primary care source is Harvard Pilgrim Health Care CDC prevention guidelines
CDC treatment guidelines for Sexually Transmitted disease
CDC health information international travel
review of internet resources for pediatricians

list of organizations with address and phone #s to help patients with various diseases
national woman’s health Information center
good source of reliable consumer health information web sites

links to resources with medical information
New England Journal Medicine on line
good discussion on evidence based medicine and Number Needed to Treat NNT


can look up multiple drugs

list of drugs and side effects and interactions to down load free


history of any discipline for a fee $9.95 certified check or credit card

has an annual fee
AARP in April 03 bulletin said there was not problem in buying in Canada or Mexico if prescription is required and there is a phone # to call not just Internet

Minnesota Senior Federation have negotiated lower prices, to join is $19.00 per year and they monitor the drug suppliers in Canada check web site for cost and shipping and requirement seems to be lowest price about 1/3 USA

website lists Mexican names

By Dr. John Hanson

 Topics for June

1.  Bad Motherboards
2.  Fires in IBM Monitors
3.  Sandex Convention in August
4.  Dictation Software
5.  Buying a Computer
6.  Video Cards
7.  Useful Web Sites X-2
8.  LCD Monitors
9.  ITX vs ATX Mobo
10. Backup for Data
11. Ultra brite LEDs
12. Buying a Notebook

1.  Bad Motherboards:  I announced at one of the special meetings that you need to be aware of thousands of motherboards that have defective capacitors.  It is an interesting story of industrial secrets or a clever way to build market share.  Taiwan Topics for Maymakes about 20 billion capacitors a year but only about 20% are low ESR electrolytics.  They generate hydrogen gas like your car battery and leak or explode in as little as 250 hours says IBM.  Maximum PC has an article on them but go to Google and search for bad electrolytics for a fuller story.  So far only Abit has admitted a motherboard problem and will repair it free for two years.  There is no way to tell which are bad so just be aware.  As a result everyone is switching to Japanese electrolytics and they are swamped.  What a great way to increase business dramatically by allowing someone to steal a defective formula if that is what happened.

2.  Fires in IBM Monitors:  I don’t know where I read this but be careful of IBM monitors made in 1997.  Check Google for more detailed information.

3.  Sandex Convention in August:  Every year Judy Taylour and Pat Hill put on a fantastic computer get together in San Diego and people come from all over the west coast.  For only $40 you get the best meals for two days as well as all kinds of software.  More importantly are the many workshops and presentations by vendors.  You also get to share ideas with lots of sharp, interesting people.  Emmett Ingram and Virginia Pfiffner got me started years ago and I go every summer.  It’s very educational and lots of fun.  It’s the weekend of 8 August at Hilton Hotel.

4.  Dictation Software:  At a special meeting we had a very sharp person demonstrating Dragon Speak dictation software.  In the past some of us have tried the three different versions of that software when it was hot but none of them seemed to work well even tho we trained over and over again and with a good microphone.  I would love to use it after I have  been working on a student but I have no patience if it makes a lot of errors.
     During this demo it seemed as if most of the bugs have been worked out.  I thot at first that he was going to can what he was going to say like other vendors have done the computer knows in advance what he is going to say.  But his demo seemed genuine  and prompted by questions from the audience it seemed like it was able to ascertain which similar sounding word was wanted by the context.  If any of the members bought the software please let me know how well it works or even better please write a review for the newsletter.

5.  Buying a Computer:  Advanced Computer on Western is still a good deal as is First Step Computer with Albert Tom, who did a demo for our club.  Because Microsoft has tightened up it is not easy to put Win98se on for testing purposes without violatingMicrosoft’s license.  To get around that bring a copy of your own Win 98se when ordering and they will put that on.  It’s important for them to put on the operating system in advance as then you know most of the parts are working well together so they are the testers and not you.  I still favor an integrated motherboard for most of the members but some may want a faster video card and extra goodies like DVD.  Be sure you have read No. 1 above.

6.  Video Cards:  The June 2003 issue of Maximum PC has two articles on video cards on page 18 and 24.  Just because a card has a fancy name doesn’t mean it’s the best.  The GeForce2 MX can barely run Quake III and came in last on their reviews but it’s only $30.  For $82 their best was GeForce3.  You can also spend $400 on a video card so read the article.  Apparently Doom III requires the fastest cards.  Fortunately none of my grandchildren have bugged me for faster video cards and I don’t play games.

7.  Useful Web Sites X-2:  Many magazines list useful web sites and with Google you can discover even more.  I was looking for a currency conversion to see the value of Mexican pesos and Google came up with X-2 when I clicked on I feel Lucky.

8.  LCD Monitors:  Be careful of putting confidence in claimed specs.  Your own eyes are better.  Emmett Ingram and I were looking at one at PC Club and as soon as you got off the up and down axis it was very dark.  Be sure to ask the salesman to display text of the kind you will use to see how it looks.  The best place to buy is probably the Pomona Computer Show as they are working, there are many choices and the prices are the lowest.  Page 24 of PC World for June 2003 has an interesting and useful article on the subject.  Two of my old favorites in CRT monitors like Viewsonic and CTX have some really bad ones.  Samsung makes many for others as well as for themselves so it is hard to tell by the brand what you are getting.

9.  ITX vs ATX Mobo:  While prowling around Frys looking for good deals I spotted a tiny motherboard about eight inches square with everything integrated.  The connector layout is just like an ATX and it only has one PCI slot but it looks terrific.  The processor is already built in with a heat sink and runs at 933mc.  The price is only about $130 and all you need to add is a hard drive, DDR memory, Floppy and CDrom.  I haven’t seen any cases for it yet.  Go to and look for Via EPIA M10000 Mini ITX Review.  For those with tight space requirements it should be very useful.  Go to for a review of one from England for about 425 pounds cost in an aluminum case with everything.  All you need is monitor, keyboard and mouse.  It should be much cheaper over here soon as more people start building them.

10. Backup for Data:  All of us should back up our data but few of us do because it is still fairly complicated and time consuming.  Fred Vogel has a good system for Windows data similar to the one I use for DOS WordStar, Quattro and FoxPro data but on my 386 computer I am limited to the size of a floppy.  With Fred’s scheme he has 700 mb available on a recordable CD.  I also use this idea for my pictures but Fred has a slightly different twist which makes his more convenient.  He puts all his data into the My Documents Folder but in sub folders such as My Word, My Excel, My Pictures, etc.  By keeping My Documents under 700 mb he just burns a CD of My Documents whenever he wants to backup.  Because his method is optical storage it is better than magnetic.  Fred’s good idea has inspired me to come up with another solution, which on the surface seems even faster and easier but is not as permanent as his optical storage.  Maybe by combining the two one can end up with a perfect system.  My idea is to use Flash memory which often is available for 21 cents per megabyte.  I just bought two 128 mb Smart memory cards at Frys for only $26 dollars each.  On the surface it is much more expensive than Fred’s 700 mb for 19 cents per disk.  With mine you just plug a card reader into your USB port and you have an extra drive That is easy to write to every time you use your computer and when full you can back it up on CD like Fred.  Another solution is to have a second hard drive.  Jack Noble tried to solve the problem with an external hard drive but so far has had lots of trouble.   Let me know what your solution to back up is as yours could be even better.

11. Ultra Brite LEDs:  Normal Leds burn out if you run them at much higher than their rated current which is usually 20 milliamperes.  Even the super brite leds you see in those key chain lites run at 20 ma but they use a different chemistry to achieve that briteness.  A number of us who have been on the cutting edge of technology still like to wander there now and then and wonder about those super brite stop lites being installed everywhere.  Recently I received some sample Leds rated to run at 150 ma and soon some rated at 250 ma.  I made some sample flashlites with the 150 ma ones and wow are they brite.  The back gets much hotter than the scalding temperature of 140 degrees F. but the manufacturer says no problem.  These leds have a heavy heat sink built in.
     Imagine being able to light an entire room with only one half watt of power.  I use a lot of power in my house even tho I have used fluorescent lights for over 50 years.  As one gets older we need more light.  You can already buy light bulbs for 120 volts made  conventional leds.  As most of you can guess most of the wattage in a conventional light bulb is wasted in heat but these new super brite leds seem to be able to convert more to light.  Look for them on the market soon or go on the Internet and see what you can find.  I am planning to convert most of my house to these new Leds but still keep the old lighting system for the times I need extra light.

12.  Buying a Notebook Computer:  Many grandchildren want notebooks so here is my opinion.  Avoid Gateway, HP and Compact because of engineering considerations.  Toshiba is fine but very highly priced.  Dell is not bad but has dropped the floppy.  On the other hand Fujitsu has everything including a floppy, DVD/CDRW and many other goodies and is only $1,160 at Frys with a 30gb hard drive and a lithium ion battery.  Emmett Ingram should buy several of these for his grandchildren.  One of the best feature is that it has a slot for a flash memory card.  See No. 10 above.  Be sure it will take an SD card and not just a memory stick as I think SD is going to be the standard along with Compact Flash.  You can also get some really good used notebooks for less than half price but be careful of the battery, which is not guaranteed.

Editor’s Note:  John Hanson is the inventor of Tooties, a  superb self-teaching  system used by millions in schools, homes, and  by eye doctors around the world to improve vision.  He also invented a  new form of psychology  called QET (Quick  Effective  Therapy) which  transforms poor students into good students, almost  overnight,  usually  in 5 to 15 days.  He has  also  had  outstanding success  in helping brain damaged people, even years after  their accident.   Why go to therapy for years and spend lots  of  money when  you can improve quite fast with QET?  He uses computers  to document  his cases for his books so that others may benefit  and improve  their  vision and other skills.  Visit his web  site  at for more information

By Frank Chao


Welcome to 58th article, which is part of the fifteenth newsletter with Kay Burton as editor.
Liz and I hope that you are making good use of your computer and it’s Internet connection.
If you are not, Liz and I recommend that you hire Rich Bulow (310)374-8633 to help you with technical problems. Rich works out of his home in Redondo Beach. His ad appears in this newsletter.
Liz and I have found him to be very knowledgeable and helpful.
“The Internet Archive” is an online library of text, moving images, software, and old Web pages.
It is located at
According to their Web site: <Start of quote>
The Internet Archive is a 501(c)(3) public nonprofit that was founded to build an ‘Internet library,’ with the purpose of offering permanent access for researchers, historians, and scholars to historical collections that exist in digital format. Founded in 1996 and located  in the Presidio of San Francisco, the Archive has been receiving data donations from Alexa Internet ( and others. In late 1999, the organization started to grow to build more well-rounded collections.
<End of quote>
This Web site acts as a supersite of links to other online libraries. It is a great place to browse for fun and to research various subjects.


Most of you know that both Juno and Netzero have totally-free versions of dial-up Internet access.  Most of you also know that both of these services are owned and operated by United Online which is located in Westlake Village in the San Fernando valley of the Los Angeles area.
I have stated repeated that you can get totally-free accounts on both of these services so that you are allow 10 hours per month for Juno and 10 hours per month for Netzero for a total of 20 free hours of dial-up Internet access in a calendar month.
During the second Saturday in May, I decided to spend two hours on my free Juno account and two hours on my free Netzero account. Here is what happened:
Juno’s dial-up Internet access locked up once.
Juno’s e-mail access locked up twice while downloading new mail.  Both of these lockups required a restart of Juno software.
Netzero locked up once, requiring a restart of their software.  None of the four above-mentioned problems were phone line / telephone company-type problems.  None of the four problems, that I  encountered, required a reboot of my Windows 98 computer.  Instead, all of the four problems required a restart of either Juno or Netzero, as appropriate.
In spite of the four problems that I encountered, my free dial-up Internet connections were a pleasurable to use and the information that I was able to access more than made up for the problems that I encountered.
For  e mail, I remain happier with Juno than with Netzero. Juno has been doing it longer and it is easier to use for e-mail than Netzero.
For Web access, I remain happier with Netzero than with Juno. Their  dial-up Internet connections seem more stable.
I continue to tell people to get onto both in order to get the grand total of 20 free hours of Internet access in a calendar month.
Most of you will agree with me that some occasional problems should not stop anyone from accessing the Internet for fun and profit.
Also, do not get the impression from this diatribe that more expensive Internet connections such as AOL dialup, Roadrunner cable modems, or DSL are not without problems. My previous articles have mentioned problems with all of these higher-priced options for Internet access.

You are happily browsing the Web with a dialup Internet connection with Juno or Netzero.  All of a sudden, you get an error message and Internet Explorer locks up. Or sometimes, you get no error messages but Internet Explorer locks up anyway. Here is what you should do next:
Step 1: Close as many windows as possible. (Some will not close.)
Step 2: Using your keyboard, press
            Ctrl + Alt + Delete

Step 3: Select any “Task List” item with the exception of “Explorer”,
“Internet Explorer” items, printer-related items, and anti-virus items.      Click on the “End Task” button.
Step 4:  Repeat Steps 2 through 3 for all items that meet the criteria  in Step 3.
Step 5:  Restart Juno or Netzero and make a new dial-up connection to the Internet.
Step 6:  Enjoy.

Since the days of MS-DOS in the early 1980’s, the current version of “Norton Disk Doctor”, which is part of Norton Utilities, continues to fix corrupted floppy disks and hard drives that Windows “Scandisk” and “Error Checking” are unable to repair.
Whenever someone brings me a floppy diskette that has data on it but is unreadable by their Windows computer, I can usually use Norton Disk Doctor to revive it enough to get most of the files on it moved to another floppy diskette. I succeed in this endeavor approximately 90 percent of the time.
Whenever Windows “Disk Error Checking” or “Scan Disk” is unable to repair a hard disk drive, I can repair the problem about 80 percent of the time by running Norton Disk Doctor from the Norton Utilities CD-ROM.

“Red Hat Linux 9” has been available for two months now. With this latest version, Red Hat renamed their low end so don’t be confused by this change. For the previous version 8, their low end was called “Red Hat Linux Personal Edition”. It is now just plain “Red Hat Linux 9”.  This is the low end that will probably be more than what you need for a home or small business user of Linux. Details are available at
The latest version is much easier to use and install than previous versions.  I was able to install it into a Pentium 450 computer in about 20 minutes.  In another 5 minutes, I was able to share files and do peer-to-peer networking with Windows 95, and 98 computers.  Try it. You may end up free of your financial and psychological ties to Microsoft !

United Online, operators of Netzero and Juno, continued to make a net profit in the first quarter of 2003. This is no small feat in the aftermath of the “dot bomb” era.
Details can be found:
They are to be congratulated for their success.  Their success is to your benefit.

If you have any questions or problems, I can be contacted by the following methods:
1.Send me e-mail at:
2. Leave me a voice message at
3.  Send “snail” U.S. Postal Service mail to

 Frank Chao
 PO Box 6930
 Torrance, CA 90504-0030.
Or sell your computer and take up fishing instead !!


It sure was a busy May as far as club meetings go. We had three general meetings. One on May 5th, 12th, and 19th. I’m sure there is a report on them in this news letter. If you attended the meeting on the 5th, you may recall that the presenter showed us a slide show using a program called 3D- Album. The program shows your selected pictures in several different graphic formats along with background music. When you have everything the way you want the program can make a  file that you can burn to a CD and send to family or friends. The CD can then be played and watched on TV or computer and it will have all the pictures and music the way you set it up. The presenter made arrangement with DR Hanson that will allow you to try this program out. Of course DR Hanson turned this task over to the Librarian. So if interested, talk to me at the library table. I have one other CD for you that has Iraqi Solitaire and Diskeeper Lite Ver 7 on it. The solitaire game has the pictures of the most wanted on the cards. As the mouse hovers over the picture, it tells you who it is and what their job was. Also it is a good game with a lot of animated features that can be set up the way you like.  I think this is something you would like to have around for a history reminder. Diskeeper is a really fast defraging program. MUCH better then what you get with Windows. It is still only $5.00 to cover the reproduction cost.
 At our Tue hardware sig we find it is hard to separate  hardware and software. One will not work without the other. Our technicians can install a new CD-Rom drive or a DVD or extra hard drive without too much of a problem. But most of this hardware also needs software to make it work. If it is some software we have not dealt with then we need to study the program to find out how to make it work. This takes a lot of time before we get it right. What we need is a list of members that know different programs and are willing to help fellow members install and get it running. Greg Neumann helped a member with Symantec Suite 2003 the other week. Also helped set up Outlook Express as a email program for another member. This was a great help as he was down that road before and knew where the pot holes were. Greg said he is willing to help other members if he can. This brings me to the point of talking about having a list of members that are experienced  in a particular program and are willing to help fellow member set it up. The club used to have this help feature but somehow we have not maintained it. I am going to bring this matter up at the Board Meeting and see if they want to incorporate this help program again. Many of the other computer clubs are doing it. Lets start it right now. If you are willing to help, email me at: Tell me what program you can give help with, (as many as you can) your telephone number, and hours you are willing to receive calls.  If you like you can set things up so that you can meet at the Tue hardware sig. You might like this better then trying to do it over the phone or going to someone’s home. It's up to you.  You will get to meet a lot of new people and get you a day out of the house. We have a great get together on Tue. Let me hear from you.



A few months ago I received a notice from Individual Software Inc.,asking if I was interested in reviewing any of their training tutorials or personal productivity programs.  Since I am interested in web and web publishing, I was interested in their “Professor Teaches How to Create Web Pages” tutorial.  This program  includes 10 separate tutorials on 6 individual CDs. Each tutorial covers more than 40 topics and offers hundreds of practical exercises designed to build skills quickly.
“The Professor Teaches How to Create Web Pages” helps the beginner to advanced user learn how to produce their own web site.  It covers Web Page Fundamentals, Frontpage 2000 and 2002,  Dreamweaver 4 and MX, Photoshop 6 & 7,Publisher 2000, HTML Fundamentals and HTML Advanced.
I just finished the first CD, Frontpage 2000 and 2002.  This was the first CD I came to in the group of CDs.  This CD contains eight chapters as follows:
Introduction to Frontpage
Creating Your Web
 Viewing and Customizing Your Web
 Entering and Formatting Text
 Working with Graphics
 Adding Links and Web Components
  Building Tables
 Managing and Publishing Your Web
In brief summary, Introduction to Frontpage introduces one to an overview of what one can do and how the Frontpage windows look to build a  creative and professional web site; how to use various templates to create sites.  It shows how to work with and navigate through  the help files.  Creating a web is shown in great detail including the use of a wizard to create it.  Viewing and Customizing your web shows how to customize and experiment with various web shows, how to customize and experiment with various web page views, add and save pages, how to navigate your web, and modify the theme of your web. Entering and Formatting Text shows how to  introduce text into your work, either by typing it in or importing it from another document; edit the text, format it and how to create a list of short phrases appearing one after another, usually usually preceded by a bullet or number.  Working with Graphics shows you how to add pictures, files, clip art, AutoShapes and  WordArt to your web page to turn a dull web pager into a vibrant one.  You will also learn how to create a photo gallery for your web page.  Adding Links and Web Components teaches how to add and format several types of hyperlinks for your web pages.  You will learn how to instal a hit counter, how to date a page and when last updated.  Building Tables show how to work witn existing tables, add new tables and enter  information into these new tables.  You can insert and delete rows, columns and cells, and several ways to resize a table.  your hard drive (85MB).  I chose to work from the CD and had no problem using my desktop that has seen some years and is a Pentium II, 450Mh, 256MB  Ram and has a 20GB hard drive.  When you start the program  a window with options appears.  If you choose to instal “Run Professor Teaches FrontPage 2000 &2002" starts the program.  First, you must choose a user name.  Once this is done, you can run the program.  Once      in this program, it is wise to read  “How  to Use This Course”.  This tells how to Navigate, use the Main Menu, work in chapters, using Bookmarks and the use of the Index and Glossary.
What I liked about this program, was that it gives you a way to make a nice web page without remembering twenty or thirty tage of HTML that are needed to create a web page.  I believe even a novice who didn’t know much about creating a web page, could, after finishing this program, create a web page.
What I disliked about this program was the fact that when I open it on my  desktop, I was somewhat distracted by the icons that are on the desktop.  This was because I couldn’t open this program to fill my 19 inch monitor screen and put the Professor Teaches 2000 & 2002 Frontpage.  To overcome this, I opened a program that would fill the screen and put the Professor Teaches- - - - over this program window.  All in all I would say this program is well worth the money.  To purchase ProfessorTeaches How to Create Web Pages, please contact Individual Software at 800-822-3522 ext166  or

Shelley Miller, Webmaster for GSBug  (Greater South Bay PC User Group)