#103, April 17, 2007

     Cruzio Newsletter - Number 103, April 17, 2007

1. Spam: A Status Report
2. Hands-On Class Next Tuesday: "One Day Blog"
3. Hands-On Class Next Thursday: "One Night Web Site"
4. How Do You Use Your Extra Mailboxes?
5. Cruzio Wins Gold Again
6. Computer Care Drop-in Clinic Speeds Up Computers
7. Ever More Cyberhubs: Now Watsonville Too!
8. Free Classes for Beginning Computer Users
9. Class Schedule for the Next Two Months
10. We Appreciate Referrals
11. Moving?
12. Feed the Hungry, Get Late Fees Waived
13. About This Newsletter
14. How to Reach Cruzio (Dialup or Tech Support)

1. Spam: A Status Report
We know our customers hate spam. So do we: most of the equipment
Cruzio buys and a great deal of our engineering and support time is
spent dealing with email our customers don't even want. This month we
are adding two more servers to our network just to dispose of spam. 
And we're already planning the next upgrade after that. We are
constantly upgrading both the intelligence and the capacity of our
spam-disposal systems.

Reports about the Internet at large say that spam levels have
risen 125 percent in the last six months -- the amount of spam is
increasing and the rate of increase is rising. Many of us are now
accustomed to cleaning dozens or more messages from our mailboxes
every Monday morning. (Spammers are most active on weekends, when
they think the system administrators are at home).

Microsoft claims that Google is to blame for the increase:
because spammers put Google ads on their sites and use the
recipients' click-throughs to generate ad revenue. If you
click on a link, even if the context is phony, they get real

But it's just as easy to blame Microsoft. Security holes in
Microsoft's operating systems and email programs have allowed
hackers to create the viruses responsible for most of the world's

Or blame the way the Internet is structured: assuming the best
of its participants, allowing people to communicate at absurdly
low cost. Anonymity and automation -- Internet hallmarks --
enable spam and viruses to proliferate. Computers can't stop
spam because computers create it: it's an even match.

One last word: be careful of phony email from banks, e-cards,
MySpace, Pay Pal and the like. Most of the messages you get from these
companies are faked. They look real, and statistics show the fake
messages are very effective in getting people to follow links or
even enter passwords into a phony form. Before you click on an email
link -- and certainly before you enter a password or social security
number -- be sure it's the real thing. Read the email carefully. Call
your bank or your friend to be sure.

For more tips on security see Cruzio's Web site:

2. Hands-On Class Next Tuesday: "One Day Blog"
	Tuesday April 24, 9 - 11 AM $99 
	903 Pacific Avenue, Downtown Santa Cruz

Have you thought about sharing your experiences, opinions, and
plans with other people through a blog?

It's the easiest way we know to express yourself -- once a blog is
set up, adding content is a breeze. Many local writers have started
up their own blogs (see http://www.cruzio.com for many examples under
"local blogs").

Blogs are more and more popular, perhaps because of their versatility.
Visit http://www.sifry.com/alerts/archives/000493.html to see interesting
statistics on blogging. To summarize the statistics in one sentence:
Your friends, your family, and your customers are likely familiar with
blogs and would be able to read and participate in one if you set it up.

But many of us have trouble finding the time to get started with a
new venture like this.

To help, Cruzio presents a hands-on class in which you'll create a
working WordPress blog in your own Web space with plenty of guidance
from two of our most experienced instructors. Mike and Jessi themselves
both have active, interesting blogs and know how to customize current
technology to make your blog look and feel the way you like. Once
your blog is up, you can post text, pictures and links, and get
comments from readers and friends. We'll show you how.

Like all Cruzio's Hands-on classes, each student is seated at their
own computer, provided by Cruzio. There are only 8 students per class,
and two teachers. You'll be using your own Cruzio account (call us if
you don't yet have at least a Website Plus account at Cruzio) and we
guarantee that you'll have a working blog by the end of the class.

Anyone can blog -- it doesn't require specialized knowledge or an
existing Web site. A blog can be a Web site all by itself.
Register on our Events Page:
or by calling us at 459-6301, ext. 231. To find out how to get a
Website Plus or Premium account, call 459-6301 option 2.

3. Hands-On Class Next Thursday: "One Night Web Site"
	Thursday April 26, 5 - 8 PM $199 
	903 Pacific Avenue, Downtown Santa Cruz

The Web is changing. Cruzio predicts that in the next few years most
Web sites will be built with a new technology called CMS. If you
are about to build a new Web site or upgrade an old one, it would
be smart to use a CMS (content-management system).

Whether you are just building your first Web site, or you're an
experienced Web designer learning new skills, you'll appreciate the
personalized instruction Cruzio offers. Our hands-on classes are
limited to 8 students, and there are two experienced, helpful
teachers. We guarantee that by the end of the class you will have
a functional Joomla Web site up and running. You can keep and use
that Web site, expanding it to your needs, for years to come -- we'll
show you how.

Because the bulk of the class is actually building your site with
instructors' help, people often take this class more than once.

To take the class, you'll need at minimum a Cruzio Website Plus
account. Please call our Customer Service team, 459-6301 option 2,
to find out how to move to an appropriate plan. Class space is
limited, so register today at:
or call 459-6301, extension 231.

4. How Do You Use Your Extra Mailboxes?
Nearly all Cruzio email accounts include free extra mailboxes.
You can set up and tear down the mailboxes easily.

Some people use their extra mailboxes to share a Cruzio account
among family members. Some businesses use the mailboxes for
individual employees, or use mailboxes for company functions like
sales, bookkeeping, or customer service (even if those functions
are all performed by one person). 

There are more unusual uses, too. Since publicizing an email
address can invite spam, some members set up a special mailbox
to enter contests or to publish on their Web site, keeping their
personal address private. Some folks abandon a main mailbox if it
gets too encumbered with spam and switch to a spare mailbox as
their new main email address.

If you've never used an extra mailbox, it's easy. Just log in to
your Cruzio control panel via our login page:
Click on "Manage Mailboxes." This is where you add and remove
extra mailboxes from your Cruzio email account. 

If you have an innovative use for your extra mailboxes that
might help other Cruzio members, or if you'd like help using your
mailboxes, please email us at support@cruzio.com .

5. Cruzio Wins Gold Again
For the thirteenth straight year, Cruzio was voted Best Internet
Provider in Metro Santa Cruz's local reader poll. We've worked hard
this year, introducing new Web site tools and features, decreasing
latency on DSL, and fighting spam. We've introduced our "Hands-on"
class series, where small groups of students work with instructors
to publish their work on the Web. We have more members than ever

We're happy that the community recognizes our efforts. Many thanks to
our customers from Bonny Doon to Salinas and beyond! And congratulations
to our much-loved staff.

6. Computer Care Drop-in Clinic Speeds Up Computers
Although we were coming off a very busy week, our indomitable
computer specialists Chris and Mike were on hand on a Saturday
to look at dozens of computers and offer expert advice.

Customers brought in computers from all ends of the spectrum,
from the "beloved but obsolete" to brand new and unfamiliar. We
were able to give sound, sensible advice in every case, although we
did have to deliver the bad news ("She's dead, Jim") a couple of
times. We were able to speed up most machines free of charge,
and worked with customers to develop a plan for further improvements,
such as cleaning up infections, beefing up security, or adding more

We served coffee and cookies at the clinic, and met lots of nice folks.
There was even a small dog in attendance, not perhaps the computer's
primary user but interested nonetheless. It's part of our Internet
lives to care for our computers -- from purchase to performance to
responsible disposal -- and Cruzio can help many times along the way.

If you're sorry you missed the clinic, please remember that Cruzio
Computer Care is available for an appointment at your convenience.
If your computer is experiencing a problem we will give you a brief
diagnostic (up to 15 minutes) free of charge.

7. Ever More Cyberhubs: Now Watsonville Too!
When you're out on the town with your laptop, you can
stop in at one of the dozens of locations where Cruzio
provides free wireless Internet access. Welcome
to the newest cyberhubs in our network:

	Catz Alley (our first in Watsonville!)
	Santa Cruz News
	Cafe Lena
	The Blue Lagoon
	Capitola Book Cafe

There are many more cyberhubs around the Santa Cruz County -- over
30 locations. To find the one that's convenient for you, check our
map at:

If you have a business which would benefit from being a cyberhub,
send us your information:

8. Free Classes for Beginning Computer Users
	Tuesday and Thursday, April 24 & 26, 6 - 8 PM FREE
	23 East Beach Street, Plaza Vigil, Downtown Watsonville

Nearly every month, our Watsonville store manager Gershom teaches
computer classes for beginners free of charge. Even more impressively,
one set of classes is in English and the other in Spanish.

If you or a friend need to know about computer security; creating,
saving and retrieving email and other files; or want to learn the pieces
of a computer and how to tell they're all working correctly, check into
these friendly, low-pressure classes. We recommend taking both classes
in a series.

This month's remaining classes:
	April 24th and 26th, 6-8 pm, Intro Series in English

Next month:
	May 8th and 10th, Intro Series in Spanish
	May 22nd and 24th, Intro Series in English

Please let us know who's coming by calling our Watsonville store:

9. Class Schedule for the Next Two Months
We've highlighted this month's classes above, but here is
a brief summary of classes in April and May.

New: if you'd like to be emailed in advance of every class,
sign up for Cruzio's Events Mailing List by going to
http://events.cruzio.com -- click on "mailing list" near the top.

Here's a quick listing of classes in the next two months:

   24th - Hands-on Series: "One Day Blog"
   24th & 28th - Intro to Computer and the Internet, in English
   26th - Hands-on Series: "One Night Web Site"

   10th - Hands-on Series: "Advanced Blogging"
   17th - Brown Bag Workshop: Security
   24th - Hands-on Series: "One Day Web Site"

Find details on the current month's classes and register at:

10. We Appreciate Referrals
Recommend us to friends, family, colleagues: if a new customer
gives us your email address, registration number, or full name when
they sign up you'll get $10 credit to your account. If two friends
sign up, $20. Three friends, $30. It just goes on and on. 

11. Moving?
If you are moving your home or office, please contact Cruzio.
We're here to help the Internet portion of your move go smoothly.
It's best to let us know several weeks ahead of time, especially
if you have DSL or if you're canceling a phone line. We can often
save you from an interruption in Internet service and prevent
costly fees -- but you've got to let us know. For more information,
please see

12. Feed the Hungry, Get Late Fees Waived
If you're late on a payment to Cruzio, turn it into a donation
to hungry folks in our community. We will waive your late
fee if you bring 3 cans into our office for our Second Harvest
Food Bank barrel. Learn more about this charity at

13. 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 support@cruzio.com 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.

14. How to Reach Cruzio (dial-in or tech support)
To reach the Cruzio Information Center, for online technical and
sales information:

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).

   Dialup (in Santa Cruz County): 459-9408

   Nationwide Dialup: Look up local number on our Web page:
   or call Cruzio toll free, 1.800.303.3302

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.
         722-6200 .......... Cruzio's number in Watsonville.

To send email to Cruzio, use one of these addresses:
   	support@cruzio.com ......for technical support
	office@cruzio.com .......for billing and ordering information

Cruzio's locations:
	Santa Cruz: 903 Pacific Avenue, Suite 101, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
	Watsonville: Plaza Vigil, 23 E. Beach Street, Watsonville, CA 95076
Cruzio's hours:
	Sales hours: 10am-6pm, Monday through Friday; 10 am - 2 pm Saturday
	Technical support: 8am to 6pm, Mon to Fri, 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, Julianne, Mark, Stephen, Paul, Gershom,
	Jessi, Michael, James, Juana, Nikkie, Mike, Don, Bruce,
	Edgar, Brian, Westi, Andrew, Jaime, another Chris, yet
	another Chris, Reema, Diana, and Maria;
	our awesome interns, Brian, Cindy, and Helen;
	Jake, Annika, and Carly (the kids)

Annika, age 12: "Anyone who can open this container doesn't need vitamins"