Books, Tutorials and General Information
O'Reilly As far as we're concerned, O'Reilly is the top tech book publisher on the planet. No matter what your interest, they've got the definitive books for you.
Knowledge magazine Everything you ever wanted to know about computers and everything else. Very comprehensive. It's the secret to GeekGirl's apparent wisdom.
Make magazine When you hear us talk about assigning an IP address to your toilet so you can monitor it through your web browser  do you wonder where we get such weird ideas? This is the place that will show you how to get close to your true hardware hacking  inner geek child. In print or online you'll be on the bleeding edge of spousal alienation in short order.
DSLreports Speed tests, forums, and much, much more about everything related to broadband as well as detailed reports on your ISP's performance. Click here for Captain Father Neal's favorite "broadband".
Internet speed This is the skinny on all the factors that affect the speed of your Internet connection. It also explains why Captain Father Neal is just withering on the vine with his satellite connection. Just imagine all those little packets making a 53,000 mile round trip.
It's the latency, stupid! A link from the above site going into greater detail on how large a factor latency is on your Internet connection speed. This was originally written in 1996 so it's concentrating on older technologies, but the reasoning and math are still right on.
When you hear the term RAID, if you panic and think La Migra, this isn't for you. If, on the other hand, you think "Redundant Array of Inexpensive/Identical Disks", this will tell you everything you need to know about whether it's a good idea for your computing needs.
Price Grabber Captain Father Neal's favorite shopping comparison sites. If you want to get the maximum bang for your buck for gear that depreciates faster than a new car, never pay retail again!
Price Watch
Stealdeals This is where the GeekGirl does her online shopping and you know what a techno-gear junkie she is. 
Shopcell The absolute best deals on cell phone accessories. You know it's true 'cuz that's the only way GeekGirl can afford to be running around with two cell phones all the time.
Current Codes Deals you never knew existed. Once you find something you want, log on here, find the vendor, go to the site, and if there's a discount, you'll get it. This one came from Godmother Goose. Hardware deals that'll bring tears to your eyes. How can this stuff be so cheap? 'Cuz it's made in China where they don't charge for labor. Better quality than the German stuff and without the hype!
Newegg Not necessarily the cheapest, but all high class gear and a vendor who stands behind what they sell.
Ecost Both Captain Father Neal and GeekGirl spend a great deal of time here. Whether you're looking for something specific or are just waiting for serendipity to magically lead you down the path to rampant consumerism, you're gonna love this site.
Cyberguys One of Captain Father Neal's secret favorites. Don't tell the GeekGirl.
Mwave Yep, more great geek gear at great prices.
Toms Hardware All the latest poop and reviews on past and current hardware as well as links to vendors with the best pricing.
Sharkey Extreme Reviews and up to date pricing information on the things you will want and may even need. Sometimes good, sometimes bad, but always worthwhile.
Ben's Bargains Where ghetto dogs come for the lowdown on deals.
DealCatcher Free online coupons and more.
Steep and Cheap One killer gear deal, one item at a time until it's gone.
Dynamism Purveyor of "Next Generation Japanese Notebooks and Electronics" and much, much more.
Woot! One day, one deal. Another site offering just one item, but at a great price!


AdAware AdAware Personal Edition-The best anti-spyware out and it's free!
A-squared This is GeekGirl's favorite anti-spyware app 'cuz it works great.
Spybot S&D Another of our favorite anti-spyware apps.
AVG Anti-virus Get the free edition of AVG anti-virus software. Better than Norton's and McAfee.
ZoneAlarm Firewall Still the best software firewall out there. Be sure to get the free edition.
BitDefender Free GeekGirl likes it, it's free, and it seems to catch what many others miss.
ShieldsUp If you want to see how well you're protected from malicious pranksters, check out this great port probing utility from Steve Gibson.
Zippo Virus Cure The GeekGirl loves tracking down malware in all its various insidious forms. She found this link to the infamous Zippo Virus which puts all your data into an encrypted .zip file. To get your data back, you have to send the malefactors $300. This link has all the info as well as the password.
Killdisk If you're giving a computer away and REALLY want to wipe your hard drive, this is the free utility that will do the job.
Dave's World Another great site from that intrepid malware hunter, GeekGirl.


Ccleaner This app will get rid of all the cobwebs and junk in your system. Don't be Jonesin' on it though, once a month will do the job. Brought to you by the GeekGirl. Missing a boot disk to get your legacy computer up and running? Boot disks for every operating system as well as obscure real mode CD-ROM drivers and all manner of tweaks. Got a piece of hardware and no driver and it's the middle of the night and you gotta be up and running by zero-dark:30? Get it here!

Browsers & more

Mozilla Browser According to the developers, this application is no longer secure and they have no plans to improve it.   They strongly advise against using it. This is just a link to's main page and is listed for information purposes only. 
Firefox Browser Mozilla's standalone web browser. We think it's the best browser available.
Thunderbird Email Client Mozilla's standalone email program. Full featured, secure, and easy to setup and use.
Opera Browser Yet another alternative to "The Big Blue E". This one's been around for awhile, and has a loyal following. If you're a web designer, you should have them all so you'll be designing to the broadest base of users.
Maxthon Browser If you like the look and feel of "The Big Blue E", but want some of the features of the alternative browsers, try this one.

For Übergeeks only!!

XP's Rebuild Command An article by noted InformationWeek tech editor, Frank Langa for Übergeeks only. 

XP's No-Reformat, Nondestructive Total-Rebuild Option

This is a little more comprehensive take on the above article. It will allow you to reinstall Windows XP without losing your installed programs, user profiles or anything else you had installed.
XP's Recovery Console If you've used the Recovery Console and have been frustrated by the limitations, this tweak, also from Frank Langa,  will give you the God-like powers you need to get the job done.
Reset XP TCP/IP If you're having trouble connecting to the Internet and have tried everything, your TCP/IP stack may be corrupted. Here's how to fix it. 
Fix Winsock Corruption This may be a necessary complement to the above tip or an alternative.
Madboot 8.01 A boot disk creator and more. You don't have to be an Übergeek to use this one, but you'll make people think you are and, as Joseph Kennedy told his son John, "It's not what you are, it's what people think you are."
All About the Registry You're always hearing about "The Registry" and may want to find out more about it. Be advised that you'll want to do a great deal of research before meddling where mere mortals rightly fear to tread. If you know what you're doing, you can solve a number of minor and major problems. Do it wrong and you'll be looking at reformatting your hard drive. Make sure all your important data is backed up, back up the registry and have at it.
Crapware on your PC All new PCs come with it. Here's what you can do about it. You don't necessarily have to resort to the "slash and burn" method of reformatting as soon as you get it out of the box, but that's a sure way of getting every last vestige out of it.
Sysinternals A whole slew of utilities to monitor and tweak your system. Some very sophisticated stuff that will let you see your computer's deepest, darkest secrets. From Microsoft, but that doesn't make it bad.
RootkitRevealer Direct link to Sysinternal's fact sheet on root kits and what to do about them. Includes a link at the bottom of the page to download the utility.
Malicious Software Removal Tool Another one directly from Microsoft that's worth a try.
CPU-Z You don't have to be an Übergeek to install or use this, but unless you are one, you might have trouble understanding what it tells you. It'll give you more information about your processor, BIOS, and memory than MS System Information utility and, best of all, it's free.
Memtest86+ A great memory tester that'll help you troubleshoot that misbehaving rig of yours. You'll have to make a bootable CD or floppy, but it's clearly explained and easy to use. Bet you're surprised that it's also free. for parents Home More than 73 million members and a very popular online hangout for kids. Become informed about what your kids are doing when they're on the computer. If you think it's just homework, you're in for a big surprise. Be sure to scroll down to the bottom of the page and check out the links.
Safety Tips for Parents If you don't know your way around a computer as well as your pre-teen or teenager, you should at least check this page out. Contrary to popular opinion, most kids aren't "computer geniuses", they're just not intimidated by them. According to the folks at Computers 4 Kids, most kids don't even want to learn about how they work. They, like you, just want to use them. If you use a computer at all, you could learn as much as your kids know in a couple of evenings. (If you don't know how to use one, how 'bout checking out what the 21st. Century has to offer?) There are links to monitoring software, as well as a link to remove your child's profile. 
News about Myspace Informative, objective and non-hysterical CNN article.

Keeping track of your kids, old folks, and errant employees

Disney Mobile GPS enabled phones from the people who brought you Mickey Mouse and Disney Land. Only works for children, but at least it makes the phone good for more than having the little yard apes run up your phone bill by texting themselves into illiteracy.
Wherifone Not just for your kids. You can even keep track of your Mom or Dad who might not be as sharp as they used to be and may tend to get lost from time to time.
Mobile Locator Touted as a business solution from Nextel, you'll know if your employees are really on their way to a sales call or are shacked up at the local Motel 6. The potential is staggering... 
Youth Driving Safe After market GPS for you car that will not only track your kids, but can disable the ignition, lock and unlock the doors, flash the lights and blow the horn. Doesn't mention if it has a "rocking" sensor.

"Global Warming"
A hot topic these days, particularly with Algore winning an Academy Award, an Emmy, and a Nobel Peace Prize. 

Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine This site has a petition signed by over 19,000 U. S. scientists as well as the thoroughly documented, peer reviewed findings of independent scientists which contradict the current frenzy to "Save the Planet". In short, they say:

"There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere and disruption of the Earth's climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth."

The research is detailed, but understandable by the layman. Read it and make up your own mind.

Noted meteorologist, John Coleman's take Mr. Coleman calls it a SCAM and has the documentation to backup his claim.


Updated 11 February 2008