Cruzio Newsletter - Number 116, May 14, 2008 1. Watch Out: Spam Pretends to be from Cruzio 2. Our Expertise, Your Website: Get Ahead With This Month's Classes 3. Moving? 4. Hands-on Lab a Hit 5. Gizmo of the Month: Max RAM, Cruzio-Installed 6. The Weather Around the World Right Now 7. New Eco-Website for Santa Cruz County 8. Telcos & Banks Charging for Human Contact (At Cruzio, Humans Are Free) 9. Something Special Coming -- Cruzio's New Website 10. Buddy Bucks 11. Feed the Hungry, We'll Waive Your Late Fees 12. About This Newsletter 13. How to Reach Cruzio (Dial-in or Tech Support) 1. Watch Out: Spam Pretends to be from Cruzio Be on guard for a dastardly spam which spoofs a message from the "CRUZIO BILLING DEPARTMENT." Like many other spams pretending to be from trusted companies, this false email message is full of spelling errors, misplaced capital letters and inexcusably errant punctuation. But if you weren't reading carefully you might find yourself clicking on a link in the email and typing your username and password into a page mimicking Cruzio's -- only it would be fake. It's a good policy never to comply if an email link leads to a form requesting personal information. (Passwords are very personal.) If you ever receive an official-looking email and wonder whether your bank, or Paypal, or Cruzio is really trying to get in touch with you, call the company directly, or send email to an address you know to be real from your paperwork or from a Google search. Ask the company: is this legitimate? If you've been asked for personal information, it almost certainly is not and the company being spoofed will want to report the crime and warn other customers -- as we are doing here. Remember, the more urgent the tone, the more likely it is to be fake. For more information about computer and Internet security, see http://www.cruzio.com/support/security/ 2. Our Expertise, Your Website: This Month's Classes You've heard a lot about Cruzio's new Website Plus and Premium services, with over 40 add-on name-brand applications and extensive Web-based management. But even more extraordinary: you're invited to Cruzio's store to learn by doing. Spend a few hours in a "One Night Website" hands-on class and our friendly, experienced staff will guide you through the process of creating your own site. Best of all, you'll be able to understand and maintain the website yourself (it's the old 'teach a person to fish' idea). We welcome all: non-techie entrepreneurs and IT experts, consultants and their clients. Our industry moves so quickly that everyone needs training and we're happy to share our expertise. The computers are fast and experienced help will be on hand. The price is reasonable: just $199 for three full hours of hands-on realtime website building. The next class is on Tuesday, May 20th but it's offered at least once -- and often twice -- every month. We're also offering Hands-on classes on how to: - Get your website to the top of search engines (Thursday, May 15th) - Add a shopping cart to your site (Tuesday, May 27th) - Publish your own blog (Thursday, June 12th) To learn more and to register, go to http://classes.cruzio.com 3. Moving? It's that time of year: the birds fly north, the whales swim up the coast, and students, parents and all sorts of people pack up their furniture and move to another house. Organizing, notifying, and packing are not a lot of laughs, but Cruzio makes the Internet portion of the move easy by handling many of the pesky details for you. Just let us know a few weeks before you go. And though we don't like to toot our own horn, it seems like a good time to point out that our prices are competitive and they don't jump by 50% after an initial period (have you checked the fine print of other Internet services?). We deliver ultra-fast speeds reliably and affordably. No bundling with other products required. Call to ask Cruzio how much you can save over cable -- it can reach hundreds of dollars in the first month alone. When you move, you might also want to investigate whether you can increase your speed. Most of our DSL customers are at 1.5 megabits per second, which is darn fast. But we have two even-faster speeds: 3.0 and 6.0 Mbps. See if you qualify, and get an even better connection! Enter your new phone number in this form to check http://quartz.cruzio.com/signup/index.php?formname=dsl_prequal.html Happy Moving. And remember, don't lift with your back. Lift with the neighbor kid's back! 4. Hands-on Lab a Hit Cruzio's dynamic Classes Program Coordinator Mike Brogan noticed a need for advice and guidance beyond formal classes -- especially for students who get home, work on websites, and run into questions too specific for a class and too advanced for technical support. Mike came up with a solution: the Hands-on Lab. It's not just for Cruzio Class alumni. Anyone can come in with a question about email, mailing lists, spam filtering, websites, or ShopSite and talk with our experts about it. We'll work directly on whatever you're trying to accomplish, either on your laptop or on one of our computers. A bit of advice at the right time can save you many hours of frustration. Hands-on Labs occur twice a month. The next is on Weds, May 28, from 2:30 to 4:30 pm. The cost starts at $49 per 2-hour session and discount cards are available for repeat customers. Register soon -- we only seat four people per lab http://classes.cruzio.com/classes/hands_on_lab.html 5. Gizmo of the Month: Max RAM, Cruzio-installed This month's gizmo goes inside your computer, speeds up performance, prevents crashing, and can be custom-ordered and installed by Cruzio's expert technicians for just $49 plus the price of memory (usually under $100). Even brand new computers don't come equipped with their full quota of volatile memory, aka RAM. But maximizing RAM can be the magic bean you need to get the most from your machine. In fact, adding RAM can have a more dramatic effect than buying a new computer. If you run RAM hogs like Vista, Photoshop or iTunes you'll be happy with the result. It's an even better deal right now because prices for RAM recently dropped. You can arrange an appointment by going to http://quartz.cruzio.com/signup/index.php?formname=ccs.html 6. The Weather Around the World Right Now For a combination of startling satellite photography and current global weather information, check out http://rapidfire.sci.gsfc.nasa.gov/gallery/ At this NASA site you can see Chilean volcanoes and sandstorms over the Gobi desert in perfect clarity from high above the earth, all from your chair in Central California. What an amazing thing the Internet is. 7. New Eco-Website for Santa Cruz County Can you imagine a website where over 100 different nonprofit organizations coexist peacefully -- even, dare we say, organically? See cooperation in action at the "Green Gateway" http://www.ecocruz.org where groups like Save Our Shores and the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County are listed by name, projects and descriptions. The site's just begun but it promises to be a place to search for information and encourage cooperation among members of our active local eco-community. iKorb designed the beautiful user interface: it's green and leafy, very cool. Cruzio provides the ongoing web hosting -- the server and the tools used to create and maintain the site -- and conducted special class sessions for the eco-groups, helping to create a place where separate groups and individuals can all contribute without stepping on each other's toes. If you have a similar need, we can arrange a custom class for your group as well, at a special group rate. Just email your inquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org. 8. Telcos & Banks Charging for Human Contact (At Cruzio, Humans Are Free) AT&T recently joined other large corporations in adding a service fee of $4 just to talk to a billing rep on the phone. "We want our associates to spend their time helping customers as they are thinking about their wireless plans or looking at phones," AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel said. (This quote seems aimed at shareholders rather than the general public, doesn't it?) In other words, move the employees out of customer service and into sales. But what about after the sale is made... no more attention paid to the customer? We do it differently. At Cruzio 90% of our staff are employed directly serving customers. We answer billing and technical questions related to our service free of charge. Isn't it great to have a choice? 9. Something Special Coming -- New Website Our day always starts with a look at http://www.cruzio.com -- Cruzio's home page. There we find answers to questions of immediate relevance: Is it raining? What's playing at the movies? What are the headlines? And less immediate, but also important: what's the contact information for Santa Cruz Parks and Rec? How do I get to Manresa State Beach? Where can I find an Internet cafe? Viewing our site has never required you to endure irritating popups or dancing cowboy ads or anything of that ilk. In keeping with the www.cruzio.com philosophy, we've been designing a new site. It will appear at www.cruzio.com in the next month or two. One day, you'll click on our home page, and the new version will be there. When you see it, be sure to log in. Every Cruzio customer will automatically have free access to all the services the site contains. Just enter your email login and password -- you'll soon be writing your own business or personal description, posting photos, and creating a blog. You'll find it easy and fun to rate local restaurants and to enter concerts, shows and other events into a community calendar. All coming very soon! 10. Buddy Bucks Did you know you get a credit for every friend you refer? It's the easiest way to save a few bucks each month while sharing Cruzio with your buddies. Recommend us to friends, family, or colleagues: if a new customer gives us your email address, registration number, or full name when they sign up you'll get at least $10 credit to your account. If two friends sign up, $20. Three friends, $30. It just goes on and on. 11. Feed the Hungry, We'll Waive Your Late Fees 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 three cans into our office for our Second Harvest Food Bank barrel. Learn more about this charity at http://www.thefoodbank.org 12. 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 email@example.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. 13. 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). Dialup (in Santa Cruz County): 459-9408 Nationwide Dialup: Look up local number on our web page: http://www.cruzio.com/support/dialup_isdn/nationwide_numbers.html 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: firstname.lastname@example.org ......for technical support email@example.com .......for billing and ordering information Cruzio's locations: Santa Cruz: 903 Pacific Avenue, Suite 101, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 Watsonville: Plaza Vigil, 25 E. Beach Street, Watsonville, CA 95076 Cruzio's hours: Sales hours: 10 am - 6 pm, Monday through Friday; 10 am - 2 pm Saturday Technical support: 8 am - 6 pm, Mon to Fri, 10 am - 2 pm Saturday System monitoring, including customer-alerted emergencies, 24 hours per day, 365 days per year (leap years, 366 days) Longer summer hours coming soon! Thanks very much from Cruzio: Chris, Peggy, Julianne, Mark, Paul, Gershom, Jessi, James, Juana, Nikkie, Mike, Don, Bruce, Westi, Andrew, Jaime, another Chris, yet another Chris, Diana, Jake, Shawn, Zachary, Carlos, and Josh; our talented interns, Jeff, one more Chris and Jimmy; and Jake, Annika, and Carly (the kids) "That's the default setting for a mother." Annika, age 13, when Mom said "no."