Surfing, who first called it that?, is fun and sometimes rewarding. I enter lots of sweepstakes and one hyperlink led me to an MSNBC site where I signed up. I saw an icon for News Alert. Free always gets my attention, but if a program hogs the system like most of the push technologies, I don't have the room, patience or resources to fool with it for long. Anyway, this was a measly 56KB download so I said, "What the hey?" and snagged it on the spot. There are other free programs to check out too. All you see when you install the program are some small concentric circles near your clock. It is very unobtrusive and I am beginning to like News Alert already. You set up your preferences in the Customize part of the pop up window. Choices in the MSNBC section include: World, Commerce, Sports, SciTech, Life and Opinion. You further customize these by selecting: All Top Stories, Only Breaking News or None. You can also choose CNET, Stock Quotes and Personal Topics which you type in. All that is left is to choose how often your personal News Alert is to update itself and then you wait for the news. Actually, you can do other things like surf, conduct business, write etc. When a topic you chose turns up, the little icon will flash red, and make noise if you let it. You right click on the alert. That pop up window appears. You can read the whole story or save it for later viewing. Mine just flashed. I got the low down on Apple buying Power Computing, an Apple Computer[AAPL] stock quote, some in depth investment choices and a great story. The icon got quiet again and I went back to writing. Life is good. Remember News Alert. Now go get it and stop worrying about the news. When it happens, you know it fast.
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