Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Contact Elected Officials

Hi All,

So let's say you want to contact an elected official about certain problem (garbage collection, your taxes, a complaint about an officials' voting record....). How do you contact an elected government (local, state or federal) official?

Great question and here's the answer.

USA.gov is the official website of the U.S. government.  Click here for the site. 

Click on this link for elected official information. 

The site has three sections - Federal officials, State officials and Local officials.

Click on this link for an online contact form for President Trump.
Use this link for U.S. Senators and this link for U.S. Representatives.

With respect to state officials, click on this link for state governors and this link for state legislators. 

U.S. Mayors can be found at this site.
County Executives can be found at this site. 
Other local government officials can be found at this site - its an alphabetical list of states...

If you need to contact a local, state or federal official these are the places to search first. 

Good luck.

Regards,
Stu

Friday, April 21, 2017

What Your Symptom's Really Mean

Hi All,

WebMD's Symptom Checker is a very useful and interactive tool that might help you diagnose what is really wrong with you when you don't feel well. 

The top of the page has a helpful ribbon of options - which include topics like 'Health A-Z', 'Drugs and Supplements', 'Living Healthy', 'Family and Pregnancy' and 'News and Experts'.  

The real value of the site is the Symptom Checker tool. In order to use it though, users need to fill out some information - which is completely useless since the user can enter false answers to questions like 'Who is the information for?', 'Gender' and 'Age'.  Other options include zip code and your email address. Once you submit the answers you see a screen with a body map. Users can click on the map to zoom in on various parts of the body.

For example, I chose the chest - then a list of chest symptoms appears next to the body map.  I chose a 'cough'.  Whereupon several questions related to the cough are asked.  Questions included 'what brought on the cough?', 'Cough developed after exposure to...', and 'Cough associated with...'.

A list of possible conditions is included on the screen once all the questions are successfully answered.  Whereupon the user can click on any of the possible conditions and will promptly be taken to the WebMD section of the site that discusses that condition.

At the top of the screen a list of the symptoms is included, an overview of the condition is given, what the patient can expect from the condition is also discussed. Furthermore a section of 'how common' the particular condition is? is listed on WebMD. Sections on Treatment, Self Care, Made Worse By, When to See Your Doctor and Questions to Ask Your Doctor is included in the WebMD Symptom Checker.

Readers can skip to the next condition, print the current condition and more. 

WebMD has a Cold and Flu newsletter for readers as well as options to Find a Doctor and Finding the Lowest Drug Prices.

The site is easy to navigate, reputable, current and well organized.  Its a good site to learn more about your present condition/illness or to learn what your present symptoms actually mean!

Regards,
Stu




Wednesday, April 19, 2017

What To Do With Your Tax Refund?

Hi All,

Well, tax day has come and gone...and now we - some of us at least - can look forward to receiving either/or federal (IRS) or state (New York State or another state if you lived there last year) refunds.

So...what can you do with your refund?

Turbotax has a link titled, '12 Smart Things To Do With Your Tax Refund'.  So does Kiplinger ('10 Smart Uses for Your Tax Refund') and Nerdwallet ('9 Smart Ways to Spend Your Tax Refund').

But wait there's more!

AARP has chimed in with an article ttitled '10 Smart Things to Do With Your Tax Refund'.  As did Dave Ramsey - financial pundit - with an article titled, 'What Do I Do with My Tax Refund?'

Finally Mint launched an article called, '10 Smart Ways to Use Your Tax Refund'.

Okay, okay... you get the idea. 
Enjoy the links and the refund!

Regards,
Stu

Friday, March 31, 2017

World Backup Day

Don't Forget to Backup Your Data
Hi All,

Just spotted this article on backing up your data from the venerable New York Times.  Good stuff on backing up your data - whether its on your computer, your social media feed, your pictures or your music.  Don't lose your important data/info! Click here for the NYTimes article I just mentioned. 

Click here for a link from Microsoft to learn how to backup or transfer your data on a Windows based computer.  This next link discusses  'How to Back Up Your iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch' - link comes directly from the Apple support website.  PC World has a link as well that discusses 'The Simple Guide To Backing Up Your PC' 

These next links discuss the advantages of backing up your data to the 'cloud'  But first, what exactly is the 'cloud'?  Click here (Mashable), her (Gizmodo) and here (PC Mag) for explanations of just what the 'cloud' is...

Backblaze has a site that discusses how to backup your computer.
Five Advantages and Disadvantages of Cloud Storage
Advantages and Disadvantages of Cloud Computing
More Advantages and Disadvantages of Storing Your Data on the Cloud
 

Enjoy the links and remember, if you need to find more information about the cloud or backing up your data, just do a Google search with some of the key words you are looking for (cloud computing, backing up your data, backup, remote backup...etc)

Regards,

Stu

Thursday, March 30, 2017

US Debt Clock

Hi All,

Numbers, numbers,numbers...everywhere.

US Debt Clock.org has an interesting website. In very easy to read graphic form the site has statistics related to the US National Debt.

But wait...there's more.

Other nuggets and gems that are available on the site include US Federal Tax Revenue, Income Tax Revenue, Largest Budget Items, US GDP, US Population , US Work Force, US total Debt, Bankruptcies, US Debt Held in Foreign Countries, US Veterans, US Retirees, US Disabled...and much, much more.  Awesome stats.

But wait...there's still more.  Click on this link to find about US Debt Clock.org.
Click on this link for the Debt Clock Time Machine - interesting historical data is also available on the site.  

Enjoy the site and the numbers!

Stu