From: Bob Rankin
Subject: TOURBUS - 29 Oct 02 - ASCII Art
Did you know you have a choice when it comes to web browsers? Most people use Microsoft's Internet Explorer just because it's there, but today's TOURBUS highlights another worthy contender. And if you're looking for an expert on a certain topic, or trying to find a group of like-minded people to hang out with, we'll be visiting some sites to help you. Read on!
I'm not sure how much longer this offer will be available, but it's a great deal. I use this software every day and find it invaluable.
Opera is a web browser that is smaller and faster than Netscape and Internet Explorer. Aside from the fact that it's just a bit over 3MB to download, Opera is a full-featured browser that's faster than the competition, especially on computers that don't have a fast modem or lots of memory. Opera runs on Windows, Mac, Linux, OS/2 and is available in about two dozen languages.
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Opera is also an excellent browser for users with physical handicaps, as it can be navigated with the keyboard only, and can scale the size of web pages on the fly. So depending on your monitor size, resolution and visual acuity, you can choose to set the browser window size from 20% to 1000% of actual size. You can also configure Opera to work with screen reader software.
At install time, Opera will import your IE Favorites and Navigator Bookmarks, which is a nice feature. It's always a pain to lose your bookmarks when switching browsers.
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In the past, Opera was charging for their browser, but the Opera Version 6 browser is free. The software is ad-supported, which means a standard size ad banner is displayed in the toolbar at the top of the screen. If you want to turn off the ads, you can pay a registration fee of US$29 ($20 for students and schools). I think this is a good deal for both the users and the programmers. If you'd like to try an alternate browser that's lean, mean, and not closely tied to the interests of a billion-dollar corporation, try Opera.
Looking for a place to talk, or hang with people who know everything about something? Try Google Groups, the largest Usenet newsgroup archive on the Net. If you're new to Usenet you can learn the basics about reading, posting and participating in this collection of thousands of online discussion groups.
Topica and Yahoo both offer a collection of discussion groups on a wide range of topics. You can also create your own email or web-based discussion list at either site.
If you still haven't found what you're looking for, don't despair - neither has Bono. But ListFish may be able to help you find an email newsletter that suits your fancy.
Listfish is a search engine designed specifically to help you find email publications, and is updated regularly. Topics include science, computers, sports, fashion, government, culture, and even a category for Internet users who are under 21.
In addition to publishing the TOURBUS newsletter, I also operate FlowersFast.com - an online flower and gift delivery service. Please stop in and check out our selection of beautiful floral arrangements and gourmet gifts. I've tried hard to make the site fast and easy to navigate, and our prices will definitely save you money. Let me know what you think!
That's all for now, I'll see you next time! --Bob Rankin