Read the eBulletin Online HAL-PC/HALNet eBulletin for August 2008
HAL-PC Monthly eBulletin - June 2008

Welcome to the August 2008 edition of the HAL-PC/HALNet monthly eBulletin. If you wish to stop receiving these bulletins, send an email to This month: Membership Drive, Associates Program, HALNet ADSL, Coming Events, Clear Lake, SIG News, Class Listing, Volunteer of the Month, Magazine.


HAL PC needs new members to remain viable and we ask our current members to invite their friends to join both HAL-PC and our HALnet service. If you are already a member you know the quality of service which we offer at competitive prices plus your friends can join you at the SIG's and informative meetings or take one of our many courses together.

Have an idea to boost membership? Our new membership secretary, Sue Ostlund, would love to hear from you! Email her your ideas! If you have time to volunteer to help with our membership campaign, be sure to let her know!


HAL-PC has joined's Associates Program. There is now an search box on the HAL-PC web site - look on the menu bar on the left side of the home page. All you need to do is start your search in this search box and any item purchased during that session will generate a commission for HAL-PC. It's that easy! Select books, CDs, DVDs, and a myriad of other products and support HAL-PC at the same time!


Want the speed and convenience of an always-on broadband connection without the hassles of foreign call centers or notoriously poor customer service? HALNet has an ADSL plan for every user! Upgrade your connection now - call 713-993-3300 and ask for the ADSL tech to see if your phone line qualifies for ADSL.

HAL-PC/HALNet ADSL Customers: please have your ADSL phone number handy when talking to Doug our ADSL Coordinator. This makes an ADSL customer data look-up faster. Also remember, before calling, please do the ADSL Troubleshooting steps first. "Troubleshooting Your HALNet ADSL Connection"


Basics 101 -- Convert Cassette or LP Music to CD
Saturday, August 2 - 1:00 - 3:30 pm
Now you can enjoy your old vinyl and cassette music in your car CD player! You'll learn how to convert / digitize your LP and cassette recordings to a CD format


Camcorder & Video SIG: Saturday, August 2 - 9:30 am: Carl Farley, SIG Leader, Open Video Forum

Computer Investing SIG: Friday, August 1 - 1:00 pm: Steve Morehouse, Computer Investing SIG Leader, "How Electronic Trading Works"

Digital Photography SIG: Saturday, August 16 - 9:30 am: Margaret Maes, HAL-PC Clear Lake member, "Using Adobe's New On-line Photo Express Service"

General Computing SIG: Saturday, August 23 - 9:30 am: Carl Farley, General Computer SIG Leader, "Must-Have Utility Software for Your Computer."


Microsoft is changing the names of its server certifications - so the MCSE SIG is now the Microsoft Server SIG! The SIG will begin studying Server 2008 on September 5th, using the Microsoft Self-Paced Training books. Over the next year, the SIG will review the three books preparing for the exams leading to the Server 2008 Administrator certification. These provide a good survey of Server 2008, even though many SIG members are interested only in learning about Server 2008 rather than taking the exams. The SIG will have four Server 2008 installations for hands-on training. The technical sessions will be lead by Jim Francis, who has 20 years experience with Microsoft servers. For more information, contact Jim at

Please support our new and revised SIGs! Robotics meets on the 4th Saturday of the month at 1:00 pm. This group intends to take a step-by-step look at how to build and program robots and how to participate in or observe on-going nearby robotics competitions. Our PALM SIG has morphed into the iPod and Mobile Devices SIG, meeting on the 2nd Saturday at 1:00! This group examines portable media players (iPods & the like), mobile phones (Smartphones), GPS receivers, laptops ... whatever you can carry with you. Common issues examined include setup, connectivity, rate plans, accessories, troubleshooting, importing/exporting data, how to get help, tips & tricks, and how to get vendor discounts.

The following Special Interest Groups have specific programs posted for their upcoming meetings. Please refer to the SIG Calendar for a complete listing of HAL-PC SIG meeting dates and times. If you are interested in starting a Special Interest Group that is not currently on our calendar, contact the Vice President for SIGS. Remember - June is election month for SIG leaders! Be sure to turn your paperwork in to the Member Services Coordinator in the office.

Our Friday AM investment sig will continue to meet Friday at 10am. Our goal continues to offer programs to help investors deal with a difficult market using and demonstrating programs designed for the individual to assess and make thoughtful decisions. We use four different programs to accomplish this and they are demonstrated on a regular basis. We also maintain a refined market web site that is open to all.

MULTI MEDIA SIG: Saturday, August 2 -- 10:00 am
Several of us were on one of the forty teams that participated in the "48 Hour Film Contest" in Houston. Basically, each team draws a genre (drama, comedy, etc.) on Friday night, and all teams are given a character, a line of dialogue and a prop that must be in the film. A finished 4 to 7 minute film must be submitted on Sunday night, 48 hours later. We will look at the film we submitted, plus a practice film and a "Making of" documentary that covers the entire month long effort. This included scouting locations, recruiting actors, rounding up props and equipment, etc. Show business is hard.

CHIEF ARCHITECT: Monday, August 4
Meeting online this month!

DATABASE & GUI DESIGN: Saturday, August 9 -- 9:00 am
This month we finish the last chapter in the web site design book. And, we will start building a generic web site that is a based on a generic design that can be used over and over again as a template. The generic site will be based on a database and will allow changing the site contents by changing the information in the database.

BEGINNING VISUAL FOX PRO: Tuesday, August 12 -- 6:30 pm
Rich Monroe: Basic Form Development with Inheritance.

ADVANCED VISUAL FOX PRO: Tuesday, August 12 -- 7:30 pm
Rich Monroe: Tips & Tricks, Panel: Open Question and Answers of VFP. As always, your questions are welcome. After the Advanced session, join us at Ninfa's on Post Oak for our Even More Advanced Session/Nervous System Recalibration.

DIGITAL IMAGING: Saturday, August 16 -- 1:00 pm
This month, we are going to dedicate the entire meeting to delving deeper into Photoshop Layers. This will be a hands-on meeting. SO, bring your computer in so you can try working with layers. I will provide stock images for you to work with so we can all try to get the same results. We will also be listening to more of the DVD on layers. If you know someone that would benefit from this, invite them. We want to reach the most people we can through our teaching in this SIG.

WEB DESIGN: Tuesday, August 26 -- 7:00 pm
What can your website do for you? You built it but who came and what happened? Google Analytics, a free tool for website analysis, is easy to install and provides a lot of information. But having web-site statistics is one thing, understanding what they mean and what you should do with them is quite another. Join us and learn how using Google Analytics can help you make more informed decisions about your website.

LINUX WORKSHOP: Wednesdays -- 6:00 pm
Installations & hands-on problem solving every Wednesday except when HAL is closed. This is an informal meeting where knowledgable HLUG members help each other & beginners one on one. Dinner after at Biba's West Grey 9:30pm. You don't have to attend the meeting to come eat with us.

Upcoming Classes - HAL-PC Headquarters

Map To Facility

Check the Class Calendar for the latest additions to the schedule


August's Volunteer of the Month is Jeff Browning. Jeff is a long-time HAL volunteer who leads the Friday morning PC Upgrade & Troubleshooting Workshop. Every week, Jeff and his group assist our members in installing new hardware and software, detecting and removing viruses and malware, troubleshooting issues and tuning computers to perform at their best. Thank you, Jeff, for this wonderful service!


Look for informative articles in the HAL-PC Magazine online
If you do not receive your Summer edition of the printed magazine, please phone the office! You may need to update your address information, or renew your HAL-PC membership!