An Ethanol “What If?”

Ethanol has been “taking it on the chin” recently! Critics like to say that it is expensive to produce, uses more oil to produce it than regular gasoline, and does not have as much “potential energy” in it as gasoline. There has even been a recent finding that due to depleting food corn, and the need to buy and ship in new sources of corn for FOOD that not only are corn prices going up, it is creating more pollution just to get the corn in from other countries! Ouch!

So, what if you could make Ethanol from something else, say, even trash? And what if there was a process that was able to do it for less than a $1.00 a gallon? Well, here you go!

Coskata’s $1/Gallon ‘Trash-to-Gas’ Tech Starts Up Ethanol 2.0: How It Works

“Enter Coskata, a startup that says it can make ethanol from almost any carbon-rich source—including old tires—for less than $1 a gallon. That’s about half as expensive as making gasoline, and much cheaper than other next-generation biofuels. General Motors bought the buzz—literally, announcing last month an investment and partnership with the biofuel company, which now plans to build a plant that can output 100 million gallons per year by 2011 to join its existing pilot facility. Coskata’s ‘miracle’ process is similar to crop-based systems, except the microbes that produce ethanol are feasting on gas released from the feedstock rather than the material itself. The feedstock must be broken down with heat so that the bacteria that produce ethanol can digest it. The potential result: garbage collectors one day joining oil-rig workers and wind farmers as pioneers of American energy independence.”

Geek Software of the Week: PageDefrag

You can defrag your hard drive, but what about your pagefile? “But it is locked… you can’t defrag it!”, you say. Well, now you can with PageDefrag! Check it out!

PageDefrag v2.32

“One of the limitations of the Windows NT/2000 defragmentation interface is that it is not possible to defragment files that are open for exclusive access. Thus, standard defragmentation programs can neither show you how fragmented your paging files or Registry hives are, nor defragment them. Paging and Registry file fragmentation can be one of the leading causes of performance degradation related to file fragmentation in a system. PageDefrag uses advanced techniques to provide you what commercial defragmenters cannot: the ability for you to see how fragmented your paging files and Registry hives are, and to defragment them. In addition, it defragments event log files and Windows 2000/XP hibernation files (where system memory is saved when you hibernate a laptop). PageDefrag works on Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Server 2003.”

Malware Hits a New High!

Ouch! The bad guys have been busy in recent years! Malware writers should, of course, be shot!

Malicious programs hit new high

“The number of malicious programs found online has reached an unprecedented high, say security firms. Reports vary but some estimates suggest there were five times as many variants of malicious programs in circulation in 2007 compared to 2006. Security company Panda Software said it was getting more than 3,000 novel samples of so called malware every day. Criminals pump out variants to fool anti-virus programs that work, in part, by spotting common characteristics. Security software testing organization AV Test reported that it saw 5.49 million unique samples of malicious software in 2007 – five times more than the 972,606 it saw in 2006. AV Test reached its total by analyzing malicious programs and generating a digital fingerprint for each unique sample. The organization said the different ways malware can be packaged will mean some duplication in its figures, but the broad trend showed a steep rise. The organization uses the samples to test security programs to see how many they can spot and stop. Panda Software said the number of malicious samples it received in 2007 was up ten fold on 2006. In a statement it said the rise represented a ‘malware epidemic’.”

DEWD! I Got to Help Leo!!!

At the end of the Security Now! that I heard about the Microsoft, free, “SteadyState” application (last post), at the end of the program, Leo LaPorte asked someone to e-mail him with the name of the paid-for product that does what Steady State does… now, Leo has a rep that he RARELY answers his e-mail (can’t blame him, he gets so much!) But here’s what he sent me when I told him the app he was trying to think of is “Deep Freeze.”

That’s it! Thanks!


— Leo Laporte

How cool is that?!?!

Microsoft SteadyState

I was listening to the “Security Now” podcast recently (Steve Gibson and Leo LaPorte) and they were talking about a new, free tool for Windows XP called “Windows SteadyState.” It allows you to build a system and then have it in a lab, or other common (shared) area, and have it revert back to it’s earlier state once rebooted. Info on M$ site is here:

Microsoft SteadyState Web Site

“Keep your shared access computers running smoothly with Windows SteadyState. Note: If you already use the Shared Computer Toolkit, upgrade today to Windows SteadyState. Are you ready to download Windows SteadyState for your genuine Windows XP computer? There’s no cost. Download it now, or look around and learn more.”

1 2 3