Sunday, November 22, 2009

Delete Browser Cookies, Clean Up Your Trail of Crumbs

The web knows who you are. It knows which sites you like, what you search for and where you spend your time. By collating these and other bits of data, it's not hard to figure out quite a bit about you.

If that makes you nervous, you need to learn how to get rid of cookies and browse privately, without leaving a digital fingerprint everywhere you go. Click on Delete Browser Cookies for information on how to Get Rid of Cookies, Keep Cookies out of Your Browser and more.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Health Insurer Loses 1.5 Million Patient Records

A health insurer lost 1.5 million patient records last May but waited six months to disclose the incident. The data, which was stored on a portable disk drive that disappeared from the insurer's office, was unencrypted and included patient Social Security numbers, bank account numbers and health data

On a separate note, a second health insurer mailed 80,000 postcards to Medicare recipients last week that listed the patient's Social Security number on the front of the card beneath the patient's name.

The complete story is available at Health Insurer Loses 1.5 Million Patient Records

Sunday, November 15, 2009

McKinney, TX

McKinney saved many of the older buildings when they refurbished the downtown area, so it has a nice historic look. There is a wide range of shops and professional offices around and near the square including antique shops, spas and salons, art and music galleries, restaurants, an "eco boutique", law and financial firms, mortgage and insurance offices, a winery and a large ski shop???

The old county court house pictured below is now the McKinney Performing Arts Center. A new courthouse was built in the suburbs near Central Expressway/US 75, the main North Dallas freeway.

In the picture below the building on the left with the red awning is the Spoons Café, my favorite downtown restaurant. They have very good Migas and Breakfast Tacos. There all kinds of restaurants downtown, everything from an expensive Rick's Chop House to Café Malaga, a little tapas restaurant.

The historic old bank building below is now home to a combination antique and home furnishings/accessories gallery.

Churchills British Restaurant & Pub below is a nice cheap restaurant. It has British classics like Steak & Ale Pie and Shepherd's Pie and of course it has Texas favorites like Migas Burritos and Stuffed Jalapenos.

This the original Collin County Prison. Now it's a lawyer's office. Somehow that seems appropriate.

My opinion of a new town is always influenced by their library. The downtown McKinney library passed this test – it's a very nice library. An additional new library will open soon in the suburbs.

There are many prosperous neighborhoods in the McKinney suburbs and many new housing developments continue to be built with houses costing everywhere from $150,000 to $1,200,000


Even the newest most luxurious apartments are cheap compared to Fairfax VA: The new Greenhaven apartments start at $775 for a 1-bedroom/1-bath up to $1415 for a 3-bedroom/2-bath.

Looking at all of the new construction of houses, shopping centers and hospitals, you would never know there was a recession. The new Methodist hospital below is almost completed and a Baylor Medical Center will be built in the future.

One very nice new shopping center is Eldorado Plaza about three miles outside McKinney near Central Expressway/US 75. Cafe Brazil, a small coffee house located in this shopping center, is another favorite restaurant of mine.

Croation Village is a beautiful new shopping center being built further out in the suburbs. Like many of the buildings in this area, limestone and other native materials are being used in the construction.

The imposing building below is Samson's Italian Grill restaurant.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Japan eyes solar station in space

It may sound like a sci-fi vision, but Japan's space agency is dead serious: by 2030 it wants to collect solar power in space and zap it down to Earth, using laser beams or microwaves.

The government has just picked a group of companies and a team of researchers tasked with turning the ambitious, multi-billion-dollar dream of unlimited clean energy into reality in coming decades.

To read the complete story click on Solar Station in Space.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Where’s Chuck

In case you're wondering what happened to my travel blog, I have settled in McKinney TX for the winter. McKinney is a small town about 30 miles north of Dallas. I'm continuing to go to school and have started trading options so I decided to stay in the Dallas area for the winter. I found a terrific little furnished studio apartment for $199 per week at Value Place McKinney. That's less than half what I was paying at hotels closer to Dallas. Their prices vary by location. Last month I took some training in Fort Worth and paid $169 to stay at Value Place Fort Worth for the week. If you ever need a nice, cheap place to stay when you travel, check them out. No free breakfasts, no fitness rooms and housekeeping every other week – just cheap, clean, safe accommodations. Only minor problem is they only rent week to week.

About a month ago a couple of friends in Virginia reminded me that I wasn't posting any new security and technology information. Since then I have posted several security and technology articles. I'll be posting articles on McKinney and the Texas State Fair soon.