Private Jet Charter

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to use a private jet charter service for that big trip out west next month. Back in January, I started to scheme a way to take a trip to Reno via private jet. You see, Reno is unreachable via …continue reading

Internet Mortgage Leads

When I wrote about mortgage leads back in January, I expressed a bit of frustration at the number of mortgage-related calls we receive here at ranchero indebto (courtesy of those pesky predictive dialers). Of course the offers come via snailmail, too … but …continue reading

Trade Show Exhibits

When I wrote about trade show exhibits a few weeks ago, it brought back many memories. I mentioned that I’ve participated in trade shows in three different ways: as a consumer, as an exhibitor, and as a member of the working press.

But I …continue reading

Payday Loan Pt. II

A couple of days ago, I wrote about how my eleven year old daughter had received an offer for a payday loan. I thought that it was preposterous that anyone would offer a payday loan to a kid. Today, her mailbox has an offer …continue reading

Cheap Domain Name Registration

I’ve been registering a lot of domains lately. Well, not a lot, considering how many domains some people own, but a lot for me. It looks like I will register more new domains in 2004 than I have in any prior year. It’s become a …continue reading

Payday Loan

I was slogging through the stuff in my mailbox when I found an interesting offer for a “$500 Payday Loan“. The ad was vivid green, with a bright green flashing shamrock, a pot of gold, and a curious leprechaun running under the banner of Get …continue reading

Automobile Donation Call

Hi, I saw your number on the Internet and I’d like to get some information about automobile donation.”

What’s the make and year of your automobile, sir?” the attendant asked.

“It’s a four-door 1992 Honda Civic,” I replied.

“What state are you in?” she …continue reading

Photoshop Training

It’s been seven years since I wrote The Photoshop Plug-ins Book for the late (but not so great) Ventana Press. While I’ve long thought about putting the entire contents of that book online, I’ve never had the chance to get around to it.

That …continue reading

Automobile Donation, Continued

To follow on Friday’s blog posting about automobile donation, I’m looking into the advantages and disadvantages. I must say that I’m more than a bit skeptical, after reading what I’ve read.

But here’s what I’m going to do … I’m going to call one …continue reading

IT Outsourcing

Outsourcing — specifically IT outsourcing — is quite a hot topic these days. It may have become a campaign issue all of sudden, but the practice has been going on for years.

I don’t have a huge problem with the concept of either IT …continue reading

Life Insurance – Term or Whole?

Last month, I wrote about how I let my term life insurance lapse. I know I need to get a new policy. Letting the old policy lapse was not something I was happy about … but it seemed to have gotten far too expensive.

…continue reading

Debt Consolidation Revisited

I can’t think of any better day than Friday the 13th to revisit the topic of debt consolidation. By and large, Americans carry too much debt. (I reckon I do.) Perhaps some folks look at the way our government’s been operating lately and think …continue reading


“Hi, this is Dave from Customer Service, and I’m calling about the installation of your DirecTV,” the recorded pitch began. “We have you marked down for installation with three receivers, at no cost.” Once again, I had run to the north side of the ranch …continue reading

Web Conferencing

Macromedia has just announced a new version of their Breeze web conferencing software. Breeze 4.0 adds a bunch of cool new features. You can read all about the new bells and whistles in the press release, titled “Macromedia Goes Beyond Web Conferencing.”

I’ve …continue reading

Predictive Dialer Technology

Predictive dialers can be quite sneaky. Just a moment ago, I was in the house, fixing a cup of tea. (It’s a bit cold out in the office today!) The phone rang, and of course, I could not find the portable handset in the …continue reading

Basement Waterproofing

We’re in the midst of a big fat rainy day here in the swamps of Joisey … and days like this bring one topic to mind: basement waterproofing. Let me just say to all those lucky folks that have never experienced the true joy of …continue reading

Conference Call

An acquaintance of mine is looking for a conference call provider. Now I’m quite interested in the subject of conference calling as it relates to web conferencing, so when the topic came up in conversation, I tuned in immediately.

I was amazed to learn …continue reading

Computer Recycling and Disposal

Computer recycling is serious business. And it’s not obscure. We’re all faced with the issue of computer disposal. So how do you deal with it? Do you take the time to recycle your old computers or simply dispose of them in the trash?

I’d bet …continue reading

Mortgage Leads

After the third unsolicited call today, offering to refinance my house, I can only surmise that mortgage leads are one of the most sought after sales leads of all.

Glengary Glen Ross is one of the best movies ever made about the art …continue reading

Private Jet Charter

I’ve always dreamed of chartering a private jet.

There are two ways to fly: the way we are forced to fly and the way they have the good fortune to fly. This we has long longed to be a they, if you gather my continental …continue reading

Trade Show Exhibits

I reckon that I’ve been fascinated by trade show exhibits ever since I attended my first trade show, twenty years or so ago. I fondly recall wandering wide-eyed through the Graph Expo conference in Philadelphia … the bustle of commerce, the bags of trinkets …continue reading

Term Life Insurance

I let my term life insurance lapse last year. The premium was due, and after going through a big rate increase, we just let it slip. I had been carrying the policy for quite some time.

As I was looking into a new term life …continue reading

Survey Software

I started looking into survey software again this week. With a couple of new book projects on the burner, I need a way to rapidly pull in information from the flock. And I need it to happen with no intervention or manual entry on my …continue reading

Predictive Dialers

Ever wonder how telemarketers can hit so many phone numbers in so little time?

It’s simple … they use devices known as predictive dialers. One of these devilish devices can dial more numbers than a whole roomful of retirees on a caffeine binge.

Predictive dialers …continue reading

Building an MP3 Boombox

I lucked into an inexpensive MP3 player not so long ago: a 5 GB Archos Jukebox. I was glancing through my email when it caught my eye: was dumping 5 GB Jukeboxes at roughly 80 bucks a pop.

I’ve held back on an MP3 …continue reading