Saturday, November 03, 2007

How To Save Your Computer From Drink Spills

Saving Your Laptop after a Spill
Adapted From: Upgrading & Fixing Laptops for Dummies:
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This article was excerpted from: Upgrading & Fixing Laptops for Dummies:
Water, coffee, and soda are among your laptop's worst enemies. Just a little bit of such a liquid on your laptop keyboard can damage or destroy your machine or cause you to lose data.

Some laptops are more vulnerable to damage from a spill on the keyboard than others, and it doesn't always have anything to do with the price tag. Some keyboards have a thin rubber membrane beneath the keys with electrical contacts molded right into little domes under each letter; that design may feel squishy and cheap to some users, but it stands up better to a splash or a flood than a more traditional design with springs and exposed contacts. How do you know which type of design you have? Take a look for yourself by prying off a keytop; if you're shopping, you may be able to get the information from the manufacturer or a dealer.
The best way to prevent damage from a mix of liquid and electronics is to keep them as far apart as possible. Keep your laptop far away from cups of coffee, glasses of water, and cans of soda.
But in the real world, stuff happens. If you have a choice of poisons, take the water spill. A hot cup of coffee, a cold glass of soda, or a glass of wine are each bad news; all of them are slightly acidic. Acidic liquids are nastier than nearly neutral water because the acid can corrode metal contacts. And both coffee and soda can become gummy and sticky as they dry.

Here's the drill for an emergency recovery from a spill:
1. If you have your machine plugged into wall current, turn off the power at the circuit breaker in your home or office.
You don't want to touch a wet wire carrying 110 volts or so.
If you're running the machine on battery power, it's still operating, and you don't see sparks, hear odd noises, or smell burnt electrical components, shut your laptop down through the normal Windows process.
If something is obviously wrong with the machine, turn it off immediately by depressing the Off switch or by removing the battery.
2. Ground yourself by touching the center screw on the faceplate of a dry electrical outlet or by touching some other metal object that reaches to ground.
3. If you haven't done so in emergency mode, remove the AC adapter and the battery, and set them aside.
4. Disconnect any external devices (such as a mouse) attached to the USB, FireWire, serial, or other ports.
5. If you find any liquid on the battery or AC adapter, wipe them carefully and set them aside.
If your spill has thoroughly soaked the AC adapter or the battery, you probably need to consider it a loss. You can get replacement AC adapters and batteries from various sources, including the original equipment manufacturer, laptop accessory companies, and the used market.
6. Remove any cards installed in the PC Card slot.
If they're wet, carefully dry them off. If any water has gotten into the narrow slot, dry out the area with a cotton swab, taking care not to leave any threads of cotton in the internal connector.
7. Wipe off any liquid on the display.
Use a clean cloth dampened with water to remove any sticky residue.
8. Remove the hard drive and the CD/DVD drives if you have them installed in plug-in bays.
Dry them off if they're wet. Set them aside.
9. Open the memory module container; remove and dry the memory modules.
Make notes on the placement of the modules. Set them aside.
10. Hand-dry the keyboard surface with a lint-free cloth.

If you spill soda or coffee, consult the instruction manual for your computer and learn how to carefully remove each of the keycaps for the affected area. If the instruction manual includes a picture of the keyboard, make sure that you can see the names of all the keys and their locations; otherwise, make a drawing of the board, paying special attention to the location of some of the specialized keys, including cursor keys, Page Up, Page Down, Scroll Lock, and the like. Or you can use a digital camera to take a picture of the keyboard.
11. Clean the exposed membrane or switch cover and the keys themselves.
Leave the keys to dry before replacing them.
12. Leaving the display open, place the computer on a sturdy surface supported by two books or small boxes.

This setup lets air circulate all around the computer. Leave the computer and all of its separate parts to air dry for at least 24 hours. Don't use a fan or (horrors) a hair dryer to attempt to fast-forward the drying process.
13. Reassemble the pieces that you removed.
Do this step a day or more after doing Step 1 through Step 12, and make sure that everything is dry and that you don't have any dried puddles of sticky acid left anywhere on the machine. Remember to ground yourself before touching any circuitry or modules, and begin the power-up process with the battery first and the AC adapter second.
If in doubt about the safety of any part, you should go ahead and replace it instead of using it. Replacing a battery, an AC adapter, or even a hard disk drive always costs a lot less than replacing a motherboard.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

IN Malaysiakini

Have a heart for the disabled, KLCC told
Andrew Ong
Jan 18, 07 11:40am Adjust font size:

Mohd Firdaus Azizan suffers from cerebral palsy. The condition prevents the 24-year-old from being able to feed, dress or clean himself.

He suffers from speech impediment and cannot use his limbs. He has limited use of his fingers, but still manages to manuever a motorised wheelchair.

Despite this, Firdaus is determined to live as independently as possible.

The youth sells souvenir items such as key-chains and postcards along the pedestrian tunnel linking the KLCC Putra LRT station and Suria KLCC shopping complex.

"I enjoy selling these things and making an honest living," said Firdaus with the help of an interpreter during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

But now, his livelihood is at stake because KLCC Urus Harta managing director Mustafa Awang said that 'beggars' along the tunnel portray a negative image about Malaysia.

KLCC Urus Harta took over the tunnel from Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) on Jan 1 and has given its ‘squatters’ till Jan 18 to vacate.

Failing which, Mustafa reportedly warned that enforcement officers from the DBKL and Welfare Services Department would be summoned to remove them.

'Be proud of him'

Are petty traders with physical and mental disabilities seen as ‘damaging’ to the country’s reputation?

This was the question raised at the press conference called by the newly formed Malaysians Against Discrimination of the Disabled (Madd) coalition.

“Being able to sell things gives Firdaus some purpose and joy in his life,” said the coalition’s legal adviser N Surendran (right).

While acknowledging that KLCC has full rights over the tunnel, he said the company could have handled the situation better.

“We would think that KLCC would use their discretion and allow them to continue trading, or at least propose an alternative for them to earn a living,” he added.

KLCC should help the disabled as part of their corporate social responsibility, stressed the lawyer.

Meanwhile, wheelchair-bound activist Anthony Thanasayan also expressed disappointment over the issue.

“Why should we see people like Firdaus as a shame to the country? KLCC should be proud of him,” he told the press conference.

He said inaccessibility of public transport and buildings hinder many talented disabled people from seeking meaningful employment.

Contacted today, Mustafa declined to comment on the criticisms. He referred malaysiakini to a public relations officer who could not offer immediate comments.

Copyright © 1999-2006 Mkini Dotcom Sdn Bhd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Disabled Protest the MPS, The Star

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Thursday January 11, 2007

Group protests against treatment


KUALA LUMPUR: About 50 disabled people gathered at the Selayang Municipal Council (MPS) building at Bandar Baru Selayang yesterday to submit a memorandum expressing their dissatisfaction over the manner some MPS staff were treating disabled people.

The group mostly in wheelchairs, who alleged that MPS acted unfairly against the physically-challenged community, were frustrated when they did not get a chance to hand over the memorandum personally to MPS president Zainal Abidin Azim.

“I told them to meet me in a meeting room three times but they refused,” said Zainal.

The group of disabled persons was accompanied by lawyer N. Surendran.

The memorandum cited the alleged harsh treatment faced by disabled trader Murugan Rajoo last Thursday when MPS enforcement officers seized his motorcycle when he was nabbed for selling titbits outside a school in Rawang without a trading licence.

Murugan’s motorcycle was kept at the MPS branch office in Rawang.

A few hours later, with the assistance of MPS councillor M.B. Raja, the motorcycle was returned to Murugan.

Among those who turned up at the protest was Support Group Society for the Blind of Malaysia master mariner Capt A. Karim Stuart Russell, Police Watch & Human Rights Committee (Malaysia) secretary S. Manikavasagam, Support Group Society for the Blind of Malaysia Kuala Lumpur vice-president Anthony Thanasayan, Independent Living and Training Centre president Francis Siva and former TV3 newscaster Ras Adiba Radzi.

Anthony said the disabled people merely wanted justice.

“Why can’t Zainal come down to see us? We just wanted to give him the memorandum, that’s all. It shows that the council is not sympathetic to the needs of the disabled,” said Anthony.

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Thursday, December 21, 2006

ROS fraud

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Thursday December 21, 2006

ROS online service should come free

I support the move by the Registrar of Societies to start an online screening system next year that will enable the public to know who are eligible and who are not fit to hold posts in associations, societies and clubs,” ROS to screen office bearers” (Sunday Star, Dec 17)

I certainly hope such a service will be available at no cost to us.

In addition to exposing office bearers who illegally hold posts, such as bankrupts, fraudsters and people facing court action, I am also concerned about groups appearing in public and the media that give the impression that they are registered associations.

I know of one or two “organisations” which give out statements claiming to represent the people but are actually one-man shows.

What is worse is when they resort to collecting funds. This is deemed illegal by the ROS even for pro-tem organisations (groups whose submissions have yet to be approved by the ROS).

Some of them even find devious ways like using their personal businesses and private bank accounts to receive money from the unwary public.

In such cases, there is no place for accountability as these individuals rake in the profits from their seemingly worthy causes.

Even issues of caring and rescuing animals (which is a very good thing) have become the latest “victims” of such fraud.

The ROS must ensure the online service includes a section where the public can provide details of such activities so that they can be stopped.

Kuala Lumpur.

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Saturday, November 25, 2006

Statement on blind on IDD 2006, Nov 25, 2006

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Saturday November 25, 2006

Software to help the blind

THE United Nation’s International Day of Disabled Persons which falls on Dec 3 provides a platform to promote understanding and to increase awareness of disability issues, and to rally support for the independence, integration, dignity, equal rights and well-being of persons with disabilities.

With sound education, which should, in essence, be no different from that of any other person, the disabled can and should be integrated into and participate in every aspect of social, economic, political and cultural life.

To achieve a thorough education, the blind need “E- Accessibility” through special computer screen reading and other software and specialised computer hardware

There are many screen readers on the market. In Malaysia the popular one is called “JAWS ©” but it is very expensive with prices starting from about RM3,500, which is far beyond the reach of all but the fortunate few.

Even those who could perhaps afford to buy a basic computer may well be unable to afford a screen reader programme without which they are unable to use the computer.

Braille translator software, which provides translation and formatting facilities to automate the process of conversion from regular print to Braille (and vice-versa), is also a vital asset for the blind. Again, this type of software is very expensive.

A useful piece of computer hardware is a refreshable Braille display which provides Braille output from a computer, but these displays cost RM20,000 upwards, so almost every blind Malaysian is unable to buy and use them.

The blind must be given the opportunities to do more than make baskets, give massages, and beg for money by playing music, or selling tissues, by the roadside.

As the world celebrates the International Day of Disabled Persons, let every Malaysian help to open up opportunities for the disabled so that they can be integrated into society, be fully and independently able to participate in every aspect of life, go to work, raise a family, and be happy and contented citizens.



Support Group Society for the

Blind of Malaysia.

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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Don't Cut Screening UMNO assembly proceedings, Nov 22, 2006

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Wednesday November 22, 2006

A mistake to stop airing Umno assemblies

IT was reported that Malaysians may, in future, not be able to watch the Umno general assembly proceedings live on air again following criticisms the party received over the latest meeting, “Rethink on live telecast” (The Star, Nov 21).

I sincerely hope there is a rethink over the “rethink” because to cut Malaysians viewers off would be a big mistake.

There are hundreds – no, thousands – of us who love politics, especially with what goes on in the country.

Although I am not an Umno member, whatever is decided at the assembly affects me and all of Malaysia.

Naturally I would want to know everything that goes on there.

And although I do not have the time to catch all the speeches, I do make it a point to hear what I am interested in.

Let's face it, the print media and radio can only tell so much of what transpires at the assembly.

But on TV, we see virtually everything, including what our leaders wear, who they smile or whisper to. We get the facial and body expressions of the speakers.

TV also gives us an uncut version of the speeches made rather than a condensed one the next day in the print media.

Airing the Umno assembly will also inspire our younger generation to show interest in what is happening in our country, who the decision-makers are and how to engage in healthy and productive discussions and debates with those in power on issues that concern us all.

I think that if some people are concerned over things that are said in poor taste or are not fit for consumption – then those who say them should be careful not to utter them in the first place or behave properly in front of the camera.

I think it is also every Malaysian's right to have access to the proceedings.

Kuala Lumpur.

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Monday, September 04, 2006

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We have a long way to go
04 Sep 2006
ANTHONY THANASAYAN, for Access & Inclusion for the Disabled (AID)

THE lack of suitable public transport for disabled citizens affects many thousands of handicapped Malaysians.

Access and Inclusion for the Disabled (AID), a protem group representing disability organisations in Malaysia, is gravely concerned whether the new monorail, soon to be built in Penang, Johor and elsewhere — as well as the new LRT service between Kota Damansara and Cheras to be built in four years — will be fully accessible to Malaysians with disabilities.

Our concern is based on the condition of the present Kuala Lumpur monorail. It is not accessible to the disabled.

We fear the situation will repeat itself in future monorail projects. Therefore, we wish to find out from the authorities if the needs of the disabled will be considered in the plans for such systems, as well as in the planning and design of the proposed Bullet Train from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore.

The 2005 Budget included 200 new buses for the general public. However, the list did not include disabled-friendly buses. Malaysians with disabilities would like to insist that the new buses be wheelchair-accessible, and that they start running as soon as possible.

Incidentally, disabled-friendly buses are in use not only in developed countries, but also closer to home — in China, India, Thailand, Vietnam and Singapore.

It is a shame that Malaysians with disabilities still do not have the freedom to travel independently.

Many are stuck at home, without jobs, and thus are a burden to society.

The recent fuel price hikes have affected the disabled much more than others. The "luckier ones" with modified cars have had to significantly cut down on their driving.

We suggest that the Government help disabled drivers by waiving toll fees.

Furthermore, giving all Malaysian disabled persons (there are more than 160,000 registered handicapped) a monthly allowance of RM500 will help them to meet their basic expenses.

Airlines should also offer greatly reduced fares to the disabled and ensure that wheelchairs and other assistance are provided at no cost. (Disabled and elderly passengers on AirAsia have to pay for wheelchair services). Further improvements are also needed at train and bus stations, taxi stands and airports.

KTM Komuter, as well as the main line trains, are still generally inaccessible to wheelchair users, as there are many flights of steps to be negotiated and wide gaps between the carriages and the platforms in certain areas.

We urge the Ministry of Transport to set up an action committee immediately to identify all the problems, and to ensure that all forms of transport and transport infrastructure are 100 per cent disabled-friendly.

People with disabilities should also sit on such a committee as the disabled are in the best position to advise such a group about their needs.
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