2021 Newsletter: 5/121 — PreviousNext — (Attach.)

Sydney Harbour

Hello and Welcome,

To Meet, or Not to Meet

Our President has been investigating the possibility of resuming face-to-face meetings of the Club in the medium-term future.

Ron Ferguson:

I turned up for our first meeting of the year on Friday 08 Jan 21. However, no one was there.

In the SMSA building's foyer, they had our meeting scheduled at 10:00 am instead of the agreed time of 9:30 am.

I waited around until about 10:15 am and then left.

They also scheduled a Carmichael Room meeting instead of the Woolley Room, as I found out later that the Woolley Room was unavailable (it was full of stacked chairs).

This arrangement was because of the ongoing refurbishment of the Main Theatre, apparently — Ed.

I would recommend that we conduct another survey of our Members to see if they are comfortable with restarting meetings again this month.

Steve South:

As discussed, I have created a survey to see when Members would like to start face-to-face meetings. I have added a question about all our meetings to find out what meetings Members would attend.

Here is a link to the Google docs Survey:



Here is a sample of what the Survey looks like:

February, March or April?

The Survey goes on to include questions for all the Club's meetings.

Please have a look and fill out the replies so we can gauge your feelings on the matter.

Thank you.

— Ed.

Meetings This Week

Tuesday Group - Tuesday, 19 Jan - 9:30 am (10:00 am meeting start) - noon

We have cancelled this meeting until further notice.

Digital Photography - Friday, 22 Jan - 9:30 am (10:00 am meeting start) - noon

Hear about all the newest digital photography topics.

And, of course, there will be the usual Q&A and other discussions.

We will be running this meeting using Zoom; details later by e-mail.

— John Lucke

Meetings Next Week


Current & Upcoming Meetings:

1 2021/01/02 — 14:00-17:00 — 02 Jan, Sat — Penrith Group
2 2021/01/08 — 10:00-12:30 — 08 Jan, Fri — Friday Forum, L1 Carmichael Room
3 2021/01/08 — 12:30-15:30 — 08 Jan, Fri — Communications, L1 Woolley Room
4 2021/01/12 — 17:30-20:30 — 12 Jan, Tue — Programming, via Jitsi
5 2021/01/16 — 13:30-16:30 — 16 Jan, Sat — Web Design, via Zoom
6 2021/01/19 — 09:30-12:30 — 19 Jan, Tue — Tuesday Group, L1 Woolley Room
7 2021/01/22 — 09:30-12:30 — 22 Jan, Fri — Digital Photography, via Zoom


Tech News:

What We're Watching: Kurzgesagt Explores Big Questions with Bite-Size Videos

See the ReviewGeek article by SUZANNE HUMPHRIES | @yeah_books | JANUARY 9, 2021, 1:13 pm EDT.

Are you the type who's always scouring the internet looking for something interesting to read? You were also probably the type of kid who was always pestering your parents and teachers with enormous questions like 'Is reality real?' or 'What if we detonated all nuclear bombs at once?' Lucky for you, Kurzgesagt is here to answer these questions and more.

Although its title is difficult to pronounce, Kurzgesagt means 'in a nutshell' in German. The sciencey YouTube channel uses stylised animations alongside its educational narrative to discuss difficult topics in its videos, which average about ten minutes. However, many of Kurzgesagt's videos tend to induce existential dread, but they're worth watching anyway for the exceptional knowledge they offer.

The channel has playlists entitled 'The Universe and Space Stuff,' 'The Existential Crisis Playlist,' 'Futurism,' and 'Medicine & Biology' among others, so there's plenty of videos to enjoy, exploring topics from science and technology to politics and philosophy. Clearly, Kurzgesagt understands the massive scope of the universe and everything in it. But instead of shrinking from our fear-inducing reality (even if it is an understandable reaction), Kurzgesagt chooses to face it head-on. After all, fear comes from ignorance, so what better remedy than to become educated?

The channel's colourful yet minimalist animation balances out the enormous topics it tackles. This makes it easier to visualise and digest what you're hearing (as does the narrator's smooth and appropriately calming voice). The channel is known for using adorable animated birds in its videos, which is honestly endearing. If you become a member of the channel's Patreon at the $40-per-month tier, you'll get a fancy and unique Bird Icon — and your bird will be in a future video, joining the ranks of the Kurzgesagt Bird Army on display on the channel's website.

Kurzgesagt has been around for years, doing its best to answer the heavy-hitting questions that tend to bounce around everyone's minds at three o'clock in the morning. Its team does a terrific job researching the topics it chooses and explaining even the most difficult ones straightforwardly that everyone can understand. Each video's pacing is comfortably quick, telling you everything that you need to know concisely. Or, as they say, in a nutshell.

The channel goes to great lengths to ensure that its videos aren't only entertaining, but also that it remains trustworthy (unlike other edutainment channels on YouTube, which only seem to care about being flashy and getting clicks). The channel makes an effort to find stories worth telling, to account for every possible perspective and context, and to decide whether the video should be a comprehensive overview or merely an introduction. Its writers and researchers go to great lengths to review multiple sources, talk with trusted experts, and solicit feedback from them before publishing a video.

[ One interesting 7m08s video is on The Deadliest Being on Planet Earth — The Bacteriophage (viruses that have evolved to eat bacteria) — Ed. ]

Read more »

My Truck was stolen! This video could stop it from happening to you.

See the 13m27s YouTube video on the GP Outdoors Channel | 22 Oct 2020.

[ This is a YouTube account of Organised-Crime auto theft. It did not happen to me personally — Ed. ]

Shows someone talking about his truck being stolen.

My Truck was stolen. This could stop it from happening to you.

Yes, it's true. While I was sleeping, my new Truck was stolen right out of my driveway. I'll tell you what happened, how it happened and how I could have stopped it with this simple, inexpensive product. I waited for more than six months to do this video to test the product's performance first. I hope this is helpful for you and your family.

All the best!

Product: Wisdom Pro RFID Key FOB Protector.

NOTE: This product works for me. I don't make any representations or warranty that it will work for you. I offer no guarantee as to the performance of this product. And it is NOT a sponsored video. It is intended for entertainment purposes only.

[ I remembered that Armourcard demonstrated a very similar product a few years ago at the SPC&TUG Main Meeting. It protects your credit cards while in your wallet — Ed. ]

Watch more »

How to Fix: Disable Chrome 'Sign into Website' Notification

See the Infopackets article by Dennis Faas on January 11, 2021, at 05:01 pm EST.

Infopackets Reader Paulette J. writes:

"Dear Dennis,

I recently switched from Firefox to Chrome, based on your advice in a previous article. I am used to Chrome's interface. However, one thing that irks me is the constant Chrome notification asking me to 'Sign into somesite.com with Google' near the top right of the screen. It goes on to read 'To create your account, Google will share your name, email address and profile picture with somesite.com'. I can reproduce this notification appearing by visiting Reddit.com. I don't want to share my information with every site I see, and I wish these Chrome sign into website notifications would go away. Do you have any idea how to fix it?"

My response:

After much research into this, it appears that the Chrome 'Sign into website' notification is a permission/option that is part of owning a Google account, rather than Chrome itself.

Before I explain how to fix this behaviour, let me explain how it occurs in the first place.

When Chrome is first installed, it will present a page asking you to sign in to Chrome with your Google account. If you choose not to do that, you get the standard user experience with Chrome. However, once you sign in to Google's services (such as Gmail), Chrome will automatically associate your Gmail / Google account with the browser. You will know this is the case when the top right-hand corner of Chrome shows a purple circle with your first initial. In my case, it's a purple "D".

When Chrome is associated with a Google account, websites configured to allow automatic account creation associated with your Google account will now display the request 'Sign into somesite.com with Google' — exactly how Paulette is describing the issue.

To disable the Chrome 'Sign into Website' Notification, do the following:

  • Sign in to Google My Account Permissions page via https://­myaccount.google.com/­permissions
  • Scroll down a bit and look for the header that reads: Signing in with Google. Under that, you will see a sub-heading that says 'Google Account sign-in prompts', and under that an option that reads: 'Allow Google to offer a faster way to sign in with your Google Account on supported third-party sites'. Click the slider to "off".
  • Visit a website like Reddit.com, and you should no longer have the prompt to sign in to that website using your Google account.

This setting will stick across devices that use Chrome, as long as you are signed in to Chrome.

I hope that helps!

Read more »

Windows 10 Recover Wasted Disk Space Instantly

Referred by Jeff Garland: See the YouTube video by Sele Training, 13 Jan 2021.

Did you know your Windows computer is wasting gigabytes of disk space? Here is the hidden trick to recover that disk space instantly.

After an upgrade, Windows 10 creates a Windows.old folder to store the previous version of Windows. It takes up several gigabytes of disk space. If your upgrade is working, there is no reason to keep the old version of Windows on your hard drive.

You can delete the Windows.old files without any negative impact on your system and recover all that wasted disk space for other programs.

Watch More »

Fun Facts:

CES: Tuneable specs let you adjust your lenses

See the Yahoo news item quoting the BBC News on Tuneable specs Tue, January 12, 2021, 3:00 AM GMT+11.

Shows adjusting lenses with a gear-wheel.

A pair of glasses with "tuneable" lenses have been unveiled at this year's virtual CES tech show.

The Voy glasses work as both reading glasses and distance glasses in one, as the lenses can be adjusted from +2.0 to -5.0 prescriptions. BBC Click's Chris Fox tried on the "jam jar" specs.


We've been waiting for this invention for years!

I'm sure that it will be hard to get exactly right, leading to headaches and other side-effects.

And, we know that Optometrists will HATE it!

Read more »

Meeting Location & Disclaimer

Bob Backstrom
~ Newsletter Editor ~

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