Cruzio/The Internet Store Newsletter - Number 43, February 15, 2001 1. Next week: Santa Cruz Tech Expo 2. Saving electricity 3. Sign up for a new service, you might win ... 4. What's up with new Top Level Domains? 5. Class discounts for Cruzio members 6. Have you tried your Cruzio Web-based controls yet? 7. Spam update 8. About This Newsletter 9. How to Reach Cruzio (dial-in or tech support) 1. Next week: Santa Cruz Tech Expo Once again, Cruzio is participating in the annual Santa Cruz Technology Exhibition and Symposium and we welcome you to visit our booth. The event will be at the Cocoanut Grove (booths) and the West Coast Hotel (symposia) on Wednesday, February 21st from 8 am to 8 pm. The Tech Expo is a chance for local tech companies to strut our stuff, and while many tech businesses are aimed at big corporate customers, there are a surprising number of local technical firms who cater to folks like you and me. (Though they probably would not turn down a multinational corporation, either.) Al Shugart, who seems like a very interesting fellow, will give the keynote speech at 8 am. Forty-five symposium sessions, on topics from "Business Planning in a Volatile Market" to "Job Opportunities" to "Web Graphics" will follow, including two talks given by Cruzio's own humble President. In addition, there will be over 100 booths, certainly portending a great opportunity for those who like to collect "show swag" (little toys with company logos on them), and all the booths will be showcasing products, services, and job opportunities that are locally offered. Last year's fair was terrific fun. For more information, and to pre-register for show and symposia, please go to http://www.santacruztechexpo.com 2. Saving electricity Cruzio's intrepid Chief Technical Officer Chris has long taken a keen interest in conserving electricity, for environmental as well as business reasons. Recent power shortages have only increased his interest in lowering electricity usage and investigating renewable resources such as solar energy. This January, at Chris' instigation, Cruzio began a program of giving away Compact Flourescent Lights (CFL's) to our employees to replace incandescent bulbs. Electricity industry sources claim that using CFL's in high-usage areas can save more than 30% on a home electrical bill, and we are satisfied that light quality is excellent: bright and not the bluish color that old-fashioned flourescents tended to be. As Chris said, imagine if large companies such as Cisco and Sun had such programs for their employees! California would see great savings. Having survived the 1989 earthquake with its accompanying power outage, Cruzio long ago made backup power a priority. Our office and servers are backed up by a combination of gasoline- and diesel-powered generators. The result? Our e-mail servers don't turn away or lose any mail, and although your own power may be out, rest assured that the rest of the world can still see your Web pages and make purchases at your Web store, because Cruzio's servers are up. For our members, who almost by definition have computers, please take care that your computers are a) Not on when you are not using them. b) Backed up -- remember to conduct regular backups of important files! c) On good quality surge protectors, to prevent damage to their circuits in event of a blackout. 3. Sign up for a new service, you might win ... Time for a contest. Anyone who buys a new service from Cruzio between February 14th and March 17th, 2001, is eligible to win $200 worth of Cruzio services in a prize drawing to be held the week of March 19th. You don't have to sign up specially or anything like that. If you purchase a new service, you'll automatically be entered. Good luck! 4. What's up with new Top Level Domains? Have you heard the buzz about the new top level domains ("TLD's") expected to come out this year? TLD's currently available to any person or organization are .com, .org, or .net. They are required as a suffix to domain names, such as "yahoo.com" or "myname.org". But the organization called ICANN which regulates such things announced last November that some new TLD's will be available. These include .biz, .info, .aero, .coop, .museum, .name, and .pro How soon will these names actually be available for regular folks to register? We don't know, but Cruzio has received a lot of inquiries about them. So we've set up a Web page which points to information about the TLD's, including ICANN's page. And you can leave your e-mail address at that page if you want Cruzio to inform you as soon as there's news. We're not expecting anything to change until summertime, but it's impossible to know for sure. Here's the Web site to check on new TLD info: http://www.cruzio.com/support/tld/ If you'd like to register a domain name right now, with a .com, .org, or .net TLD, have a look at: http://www.cruzio.com/support/web/domainfaq.html 5. Class discounts for Cruzio members Cruzio customers are eligible for a free class ($225 value) at New Horizons. Please visit their web site for details at www.newhorizonssantacruz.com, pick up a coupon at Cruzio, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Cruzio will soon be adding a education section on our home page where you can find community classes for HTML/web design and general computer skills. Let us know if there's a computer education institution you'd like to see us add to our list. Send the URL to email@example.com and we'll check it out. 6. Spam update We are all sick of spam (unsolicited e-mail, or junk e-mail). Cruzio is still working on the spam relief project and as mentioned previously, that project has an estimated completion time in the second quarter of 2001. It involves replacing our entire e-mail server and we are proceeding carefully and slowly. We know our customers are concerned about spam and dislike it, sometimes intensely. Until the new spam project is up and running, there are measures you can take against spam. Please see Cruzio's anti-spam page at http://www.cruzio.com/support/email/spaminfo.html A reminder: Cruzio currently fights spam on many fronts. Our servers check for untraceable return addresses, and we don't allow spamming from our system. We never give customer information out to other organizations. But spammers come up with new methods to do their work, and so we have had several major efforts in the last few years to fight spam. The mail server replacement project is just the latest one. 7. Have you tried your Cruzio Web-based controls yet? Every Cruzio customer has a Control Panel on the Web. Please do have a look at yours. You may see account features of which you weren't even aware. Just go to the main Cruzio support page http://www.cruzio.com/support put your login, password, and domain name in the fields at the top of the page, and click "Go". After a brief pause (we're making sure your password and other info is correct), voila! You arrive at your own control panel. 8. About This Newsletter Cruzio doesn't like to waste bandwidth with extra email, but we sometimes have events and announcements that users need to know about. This seems like the most efficient way to let people know what's happening. Hope it's helpful. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any comments or questions. By the way, we would love to have a regular, predictable schedule for this newsletter...but we simply do not send it unless there is real news enclosed. Thus the haphazard datelines. 9. How to Reach Cruzio (dial-in or tech support) To reach the Cruzio Information Center, for online technical and sales information: http://www.cruzio.com/support To dial in to Cruzio, set your software to dial one of the numbers below (note: we've expanded and joined modem pools, so you may be using another number. If so, don't worry, it still works just fine). 56k: 459-9408 33.6 kbps and under: 459-6230 To call Cruzio: 459-6301............Use this number to check Cruzio's system status, pay your Cruzio bill, find out more about our hours and location, or to reach someone in customer service and technical support. To send email to Cruzio, use one of these addresses: email@example.com ......for technical support firstname.lastname@example.org .......for billing and ordering information Cruzio's location: 903 Pacific Avenue, Suite 101, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 Cruzio's hours: Sales hours: 10am-6pm, Monday through Friday; 10 am - 2 pm Saturday Technical support: 10-6 pm, Monday through Friday, 10am - 2pm Saturday System monitoring, including customer-alerted emergencies, 24 hours per day, 365 days per year (leap years, 366 days) Thanks very much from Cruzio: Chris, Peggy, John, Julianne, Patton, Kathy, Mark, Martin, Georgette, Tapati, Hilary, Brittany, Rachael, Barbara, Priya, Stephen, Paul, Tim, Gershom, Kelly, Allyson, Laura, Sam, another Chris, Jessi, and Steve (the grownups); Jake, Annika, and Carly (the kids) I came out of the house to find Carly, age 3, putting begonia petals on the hood of our Toyota. "Car wants to bloom!" she told me.