NWA-PCUG Newsletter Article, October 2003
The Deals Column
by Bob Click, The Dealsguy
Greater Orlando Computer Users Group
(click to email author)

I have been working hard to post various articles on my Web site that I think are interesting and well written items I found in the newsletters I receive. I've had no feedback from anybody on how many are using them and I have no Web log on that site. I don't know if it was all for naught, or if my readers and some editors are actually getting some good stuff from it. Please let me know if I am getting things you like, or if you want something else. I need input.

I also find many other useful items, such as tips, in the newsletters I receive and try to save many of them for future reference, not to mention all the interesting and useful URLs I have saved. It sure makes large files. The reviews I post are mostly for novel things, or items many might be buying now, such as cameras and color laser printers. That's because most UG newsletters are full of reviews for books and popular software.

I've also noticed something else. Many of the authors I ask for their articles have been around computers for some time. When I get the file from them, it is often written in older software. Looks like I am not the only person who is not buying new software because what I already have is working fine. If some vendors have their way, your software would only run for one year and would then have to be renewed.

Russ Walter's book "The Secret Guide To Computers" [ http://www.secretfun.com ] was not a special, but user groups can always use it as a fundraiser by purchasing at the volume discounts and reselling them to members. Masque Publishing's "A Computerized One Armed Bandit," [ http://www.masque.com ] game for the discounted price of $19.95 is still good this month. They might even give us a special on another of their games next month. I'll ask

Our Friend Dave is Baaaack
Dave Whittle was kind enough to remember the DealsGuy and his readers. He sent this message the other day that I will include. Many of you know Dave very well since he has presented to your users groups.

"I seem to have been fortunate enough to survive the high-tech downturn. My current clients (replacing MGI) are Intel, iSeeMedia, 3D Album, muvee, and Alpha Software. Each of my client software companies has agreed to let me offer some great deals to user group members, and, as always, we limit our offerings to those products that are of almost universal appeal and adhere to our high standards of quality and usability. We've earned your trust over many years of helping user group members find the best software from hot new categories, just as you've earned their trust by ferreting out great deals. Here are some great deals on great software you can offer your readers:

"3D Album PLUS DVD Converter (Animation Capture) [ http://www.3d-album.com ]. Create beautiful, eye-popping 3D slide shows from your digital photos. Share by saving the show and music as an executable file or a folder containing everything you need to burn an auto-run CD. You can also convert the slide shows to movie formats for use with a DVD authoring program such as VideoWave 5.

Low Internet Price: $39.95 + $24.95 + $7.70 S&H = $72.60.
User Group Price: ONLY $35!

"muvee autoProducer DVD Edition [ http://www.muvee.com ]. Process any raw video footage (such as your home movies) quickly and easily, converting it into a fascinating movie or music video in one of over a dozen different styles, automatically! Save it as an .AVI, .MPEG, .MPG2, or a variety of other formats. This software is the perfect complement to any video editor or DVD authoring software. Includes manual and CD not available when you order direct from the muvee web site.

Low Internet Price: $59.95 + $14.95 for CD + S&H = $74.90.
User Group Price: ONLY $35!

"iSeeMedia PhotoVista Panorama 3.0 [ http://www.iseemedia.com ]. Create fully immersive, interactive, 3D panoramas automatically from a series of digital photos. Upgrade to Version 3.0 to get improved workflow and the ability to stitch an additional layer vertically.

Low Internet Price: $59.95 + $9.95 S&H = $69.90.
User Group Price: ONLY $35!

"ALL THREE OF THE ABOVE: ONLY $95! INCLUDING Shipping and Handling FREE if your readers say they saw the offer in your Deals Guy column. Save over $114! Offer expires October 30, 2003.

"You can e-mail the above information to [ orders@webworkingservices.com ] or mail it with a check to Webworking Services Corporation, 653 N 600 E, Springville, UT 84663, or fax it to (801) 489-0609."

DealsGuy note: While I have not heard of any problems, be aware that sending a credit card number by e-mail may not be the most secure method. If you are unsure about any pricing or S&H, contact Dave for clarification.

Do Much Long Distance Calling?
A long time ago I wrote about [ http://www.bigzoo.com ], which I though was a good deal, and it still is. The rate is 2.9 and 3.9 cents for calls in the US with various rates for other countries, all very good. It's also good in motels etc. when you are away from home. Just go on line and sign up by using your CC to put some money into an account. I don't normally find dialing Bigzoo a problem unless it was busy and I have to keep trying. I simply use a speed dialer for the access number and the pin number. According to Kiplinger, here are some other options.

[ http://www.onesuite.com ] has two versions. Dialing one of its local access numbers gives you domestic long distance calling for 24/7 at just 2.5 cents per minute. If you prefer toll-free access numbers, the price goes to 2.9 cents per minute.

If you prefer the convenience of just dialing 1 (doing it the old fashioned way), try [ http://www.gtctelecom.com ] and LD calling will cost you just 5 cents per minute 24/7, and no monthly charges. For that, they require you be billed online and use a credit card. This one won't include Alaska or Hawaii at that price. A paper bill would cost $1.95 per month. (If you check your phone bill now, you are probably already paying a hefty fee for having your long distance calls included on your phone bill). In the article I read they also included some URLs for doing comparisons. [ http://www.tollchaser.com ], [ http://www.SaveOnPhone.com ] and [ http://www.getconnected.com ] which also includes wireless.

That's it for this month. Meet me here again next month if your editor permits. This column is written to make user group members aware of special offers or freebies I have found or arranged, and my comments should not be interpreted to encourage, or discourage, the purchase of any products, no matter how enthused I might sound. Bob (The Cheapskate) Click [ Bobclick@mindspring.com ]. Visit my Web site at [http://www.dealsguy.com ] for past columns. I have also been busy putting up some interesting new articles on my Web site, so take a look. My thanks to the authors I was able to reach. However, they don't all answer their e-mail so I often must give up on many good articles for lack of response.

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