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By Erik Eckel Contributor ·
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First TechProGuild Podcast

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

The very first TechProGuild Podcast has just published! Recorded by Michael Jackman, the podcast reviews late-breaking tech news. Quick hitting segments in this installment target battling the Sober virus and troublesome spyware.<br><br>Subscribe to the XML feed:<br><br><a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/av/audio/TPG/tpgpodcast.xml"><img src="http://techrepublic.com.com/i/tr/rss/xml.gif" border="0" width="36" height="14" alt="Subscribe to the XML feed."/></a><br><br><a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/av/audio/TPG/TechProGuild_Podcast_May_13_2005.MP3">Use this link to download the MP3 file directly.</a><br><br>I'd enjoy hearing your thoughts on the actual podcast or podcasting in general. Post a comment or <a href="mailto:erik.eckel@techrepublic.com">send me an e-mail.</a>

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New Screen by Screen Galleries

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

TechProGuild's introduced a new feature: Screen by Screen photo galleries capturing all the steps required to perform specific tasks. The first two installments target <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/2300-6345-5713967.html">adding a user in Active Directory</a> and <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/2300-6349-5714178.html">eliminating spyware with Spybot 1.3</a>. Check them out and <a href="mailto:erik.eckel@techrepublic.com">let me know what you think</a>.

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Second TechProGuild Podcast Now Online

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>We've just published the second TechProGuild podcast. In the latest installment, TechProGuild commentator (and co-founder) Mike Jackman explores Microsoft's Identity Metasystem proposal, a new Google feature and more, while also introducing you to a new article format being tested on TechProGuild and other timely, time-saving resources. You can <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/av/audio/TPG/TechProGuild_Podcast_May_27_2005.mp3">download the MP3 file</a>. Don't forget to <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/i/tr/one_offs/tpgpodcast.xml">subscribe to the XML feed</a>.</p>

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OK, I Admit It

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>It took me awhile to jump on the blog bandwagon. But I'm a believer now. Originally I doubted anyone would care what I, or any other Joe, thinks about this or that issue. Online diairies, I thought. That's cool, if you enjoy floating all your dirty laundry for the world to see. But now it's clear blogs are reshaping how information is exchanged.</p>
<p>So, I decided it was time to catch up on what I'd missed. I sat down with O'Reilly & Associate's <a href="http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/essblogging/index.html">Essential Blogging</a>. The book's a little dated - it was released in August 2002 - but it still provides a great introduction to the nature of Web logging, how it began and many different tools you can use to be up and running with your own blog in minutes. Notable contributors include <a href="http://www.craphound.com/">Cory Doctorow</a>, who challenged traditional publishing models when he released a free eBook version of his <em><a href="http://craphound.com/down/">Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom</a></em> simultaneously with the paper-based version.</p>
<p>Dig into the book, and you'll find new updates exist for all the tools explored - Blogger, Radio UserLand, Movable Type and Blosxom. And there's no mention of Google buying Blogger, among other later-breaking items. But you will find O'Reilly's unwavering commitment to covering technology with the flair, interest and expertise that have become hallmarks of its respected texts.</p>
<p>Though it's a few years old now, <em>Essential Blogging</em> may well prove to be a collectible manual - kind of a version 1.0 - that ends up trading on eBay for well over its original purchase price a few years from now. By then everyone and their mothers have blogs, so you may wish to get a copy now.</p>

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OK, I Admit It

by Rafael.Rodriguez7192 In reply to OK, I Admit It

<p>When Blogging started I thought it was going to be a fad, too.  But I've found that some blog writers are changing the rules for self-learning.  A good example, Freakonmics from the New York Times Website.  As an former academician, today's student's do not have any excuses in going after regular and supplemental work in delving into new concepts and paradigms.  Doing a great job in blogging.</p>
<p>Regards,</p>
<p>Rafael Rodriguez</p>
<p>San Juan, PR</p>
<p> </p>

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New on TechProGuild

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>TechProGuild's launched a few new items of particular interest.</p>
<p>First, we're experimenting with Lunch and Learn presentations. The idea is these prepackaged presentations save you significant time by eliminating the need for you to conduct your own research and format your own presentation to give end users. For example, TechProGuild members can download the <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/5138-6355-5630309.html?tag=search">Internet and E-mail Usage Lunch and Learn</a> presentation, whih comes complete not only with the presentation and speaker's notes but also a leave-behind document that can double as your organization's Internet and e-mail usage policy. All you need to do is send attendees an invite (which we've drafted for you, as well), read the speaker's notes and present the document. Try it out and <a href="mailto:erik.eckel@techrepublic.com">drop me a note with your thoughts</a>.</p>
<p>And just last week we published the third TechProGuild podcast. You can subscribe to the <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/i/tr/one_offs/tpgpodcast.xml">XML feed</a>. Or, you can <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/av/audio/TPG/TechProGuild_Podcast_June_13_2005.mp3">download the podcast directly</a>. TechProGuild podcasts are available to everyone, incidently. You need not be a TechRepublic or TechProGuild member to listen to them (although you likely will need to be a TechRepublic or TechProGuild member to access several of the resources you may find mentioned).</p>
<p>Publishing these podcasts has forced me to upgrade my RSS knowledge quickly. I tapped O'Reilly's <em>Developing Feeds with RSS and Atom </em>in the process. I'll post a quick review here in the TechRepublic Blogs section soon.</p>

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Is it getting hot?

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>A staunch Windows advocate, I find myself contemplating the unthinkable: switching. Well, not switching, really, as you'd be hard pressed getting me to part with my Windows Media Center Edition 2005 system (as well as a workhorse Win2K unit that doubles as a storage server).</p>
<p>But I find myself slowing to read Apple Tiger news. When I see Mac ads, I actually stop and read them. When I was in Chicago last month, I visited Apple's store on Michigan Avenue. It was there that the festering bug finally caught a serious hold (maybe it was something in the air - does Apple doctor the environs the way casinos have been rumored to?).</p>
<p>Either way, the entry-level iBook's looking attractive. Integrated wireless, full iLife suite, nice form factor, etc. It'll have enough horsepower for the tasks I need from a portable (e-mail, Internet access, digital photo viewing and tweaking and word processing). Editing video or creating slide shows would probably choke it to a crawl, but that's what my almost 4Ghz Media Center Edition system is for, right?</p>
<p>What's going on here? Have I spent too much time in the blazing summer heat, or am I falling victim to the Mac fashion that's so ruthlessly promoted in movies and on TV. Or could it be an iBook is the answer to my need for a smaller but dependable mobile companion?</p>
<p><a href="mailto:eeckel@techrepublic.com">E-mail me your thoughts</a>. I'll keep you posted as to what happens.</p>
<p>EE</p>
<p> </p>

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Trackside Technology - IT Makes IndyCars Go

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>IndyCars go fast. And its computer professionals that make it possible.</p>
<p>TechProGuild editor John Sheesley and I traveled to Kentucky Speedway for the <a href="http://www.indyracing.com/home.php">Indy Racing League's</a> <a href="http://www.kentuckyspeedway.com/newsline/news.asp?sid=472">Amber Alert 300</a>. We interviewed several race teams, including <a href="http://www.rahal.com/">Rahal Letterman Racing</a>, whose Danica Patrick won the pole position. Look for a few articles soon on what we discovered and how you might benefit by adopting some of the same contingency plans used by IndyCar team engineers, where a lot is literally riding on the technician's ability to keep Windows systems up and running in grueling environments.</p>
<p>Meanwhile, you can browse photographs I've posted to <a href="http://community.webshots.com/user/erikeckelcnet">Webshots</a> and <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/erikeckel/sets/748327/">Flickr</a>. Soon John and I will publish an entire set as a TechProGuild Photo Gallery.</p>

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Developing Feeds With RSS and Atom

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>Awhile back, <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/5247-6257-0.html?id=2252949">John</a> (TechProGuild senior editor) and I set to publishing the first TechProGuild podcasts. We recognized the need to include the TechProGuild podcasts we were creating (with the assistance of former TechProGuild alumnus Mike Jackman) in RSS feeds to ensure robust distribution.</p>
<p>TechRepublic's downloads already benefit from their own RSS feed, so we only needed to publish the podcast within the TechRepublic downloads center to officially make it a podcast. But we chose, too, to build a separate RSS feed that could operate independently of TechRepublic's existing XML syndication stream. I'd written XML records before, including for electronic books we'd published on Amazon, but I felt a little out of the loop when it came to RSS.</p>
<p>I turned to O'Reilly's <em><a href="http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/deveoprssatom/index.html">Developing Feeds With RSS And Atom</a></em>. Ben Hammersley authored the title, which serves as an excellent primer for understanding RSS history, getting up to speed authoring RSS 2.0 feeds (with additional information on RSS 1.0) and understanding and employing the developing Atom standard. Even if most of your skill comes from the administrative side of the IT house, as does mine, you needn't worry. One doesn't have to be a developer to understand and build RSS feeds using Hammersley's book.</p>
<p>If you're supporting corporate blogs, interested in learning more about RSS or need to improve your syndication skills, check out this O'Reilly title. It's as good a place to begin as any.</p>
<p>While knowing (or understanding) some HTML is recommended, numerous code examples are provided (usually in Perl). In just a short time you'll find yourself being able to draft code that allows you to create and publish a feed, tabulate hits, register with all-important aggregators and more.</p>

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Trackside Technology Photo Gallery

by Erik Eckel Contributor In reply to Inside TechRepublic Press

<p>TechProGuild editor <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/5247-6257-0.html?id=2252949">John Sheesley</a> helped me load the Trackside Technology photo gallery. <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/2300-10875_11-5841683.html">Check it out</a> to see how Danica Patrick, Dan Wheldon and other top IndyCar drivers and teams are leveraging the same technologies you do to win races on the demanding open wheel racing circuit. Note the elaborate pit-side setups, and enjoy some vivid images from the AMBER Alert Portal Indy 300, where Danica Patrick won the pole.</p>
<p>Upon winning the race, Scott Sharp credited his technical team with a big assist. <a href="http://techrepublic.com.com/2300-10875_11-5841683.html">Visit the photo gallery</a> for more details.</p>

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