June 2004 SIG Notes

Microsoft Access  Developer’s Workshop

Robert L. Stewart

We cover all areas of Access development except the security capability within Access and Macros. The lack of coverage of the security system is because the SIG leader advocates not using it.   Workarounds for this is a valid topic for discussion. Macros are not covered because they are not at a developer’s level; they are for power users that do not want to learn to write VBA code. We are covering VBA programming, SQL Server databases through either the MSDE or the developer’s edition of SQL Server 2000, Transact SQL (SQL Server’s programming language), form and report development and management, and best practices for Access development. This SIG is not for the weak of heart. We cover hard-core topics but we also explain everything at a level that everyone can understand it.

We will change the way you think about Access and databases in general. Everyone is welcome to attend the SIG and can be guaranteed to come away with something new each meeting. For more information, contact Robert L. Stewart at l_stewart@highstream.net

Build or Buy a PC

Gill Boyd

 After having personally experienced BuildOrBuy for over 10 years, one would think we would have finished our mission? Hardly. Apparently 60,000 other people around the world are also enjoying BuildOrBuy these days! Our ongoing PC Specs by Joe Whinery which feature the AMD Athlon XP also List a few other creature comforts we’ve heard about and are now experiencing including USB 2 & FireWire + 6 Channel Audio! Getting ready for DVD-Audio on your PC? Now we’re able to do more than just listen, we can create the content on a PC Digital Audio Workstation! We’re still covering new technology, new PC Spec’s and meeting new people. Our weekly Discussions include various aspects of Technology and People Helping People.

We encourage you to join us each week during our Sessions. Our BuildOrBuy web sites can be accessed from www.BuildorBuy.org or www.BuildOrBuy.net

Computer Investing, Mutual Funds, Stocks & Other Forms of Investing

Gene Ely

The Computer Investing SIG was formed to allow members of the HAL-PC Mutual Fund SIG and the American Association of Individual Investors Computer SIG to look not only at mutual fund investing but also to look at stocks and bonds and other forms of investing. As members brought more knowledge and experience, the number of financial software programs increased. Members demonstrate the programs they use to assist in making investment decisions. We welcome new members who bring their knowledge and investing experiences. Also, we are continually looking for people who are willing to share their experiences with us and make presentations to our Group. We learn from one another. God gave all of us talents and in our SIG we use these talents. The Computer Investing SIG meets every Friday, except on holidays. All meetings are held at the HAL-PC headquarters from 9:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., with an hour off for lunch (around 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.). Each week’s presentation schedule is posted on Tuesday evening by Dorothy Valego and can be viewed at the following location:  http://www.hal-pc.org/~dvalego/COMPINVE.HTM .

CCNA Study Group, New SIG

 Kathleen McKenzie

Do you have what it takes to be a Cisco Certified Network Associate? Come study in the new CCNA study group. For more information e-mail Kathleen McKenzie at  katmak @hal-pc.org. Take the challenge: CCNA, the ultimate certification!

Chief Architect

Louis Fernandez

Chief Architect is architectural software for building contractors, designers, architects and homeowners. This new Chief Architect SIG will help novice and experienced users develop greater proficiency and maximize the benefits of using this powerful design tool. Meetings will focus on how-to-demonstrations, tips and tricks, and help with problems members bring to the session for ideas and advice. This SIG will meet on the first Monday of each month at 7 p.m. For more information, contact Louis Fernandez at louis@lfcompany.com

Customer Relationship  Management

Odis Wooten & Watson Lott

Every successful company already has customer relationship management (not necessarily the software.) It is done by phone, in writing, in person, via websites, and other automation. Simply put, CRM encompasses every contact an organization has with its customers, potential customers, and resellers.

In today’s sagging economy, keeping customers happy, and increasing revenue from them, are critical to the success of small, medium, and large companies alike – in every industry. So, if there are ways to do it better, faster or cheaper the benefits are major.

Many people think of “CRM” as software, and from a technology perspective, it is. Customer Relationship Management software, so-called “Front Office” software, provides companies with the tools to more creatively manage their dealings with the outside world. Effective CRM implementations increase customer satisfaction, rev up productivity, reduce costs, and s t r e t c h Customer Lifetime Value.

To deliver a profitable CRM solution is a significant challenge. It requires that people, processes, and information be synchronized in a harmonious, complementary way. In the CRM SIG we will deal with the issues of achieving successful CRM results by combining these elements in creative and systematic ways.

Meetings are held on the 4th Wednesday of each month at HAL-PC headquarters beginning at 7:00 p.m. We invite you to join us and help make this an even better group!

For more information send a message to  odis@msn.com or watsonlott@origincrm.com.

Digital Imaging

Malcolm McCorquodale III

Digital Imaging SIG meets the third Saturday of the month from 1 to 3 p.m. and has been reorganized from the Scanning and Digital SIG. We plan to address various aspects of digital imaging such as photographing, editing, scanning, printing, emailing, creating slide shows, burning to CDs and DVDs. We will sometimes have outside speakers, and there will always be time for Q & A. If you would like to receive email notifications of meetings, please email Malcolm McCorquodale: malcolm@halpc.org or Harriet Correll: hacorrell@cs.com


Jean Smoorenburg

If you are a beginner and want to learn more about computerized genealogy or if you’re more advance, there is something for everyone. Our Genealogy SIG meets the third Thursday of the month at 7:00 p.m. Contact SIG Leader Donna LeNoir for more information 281/351-2698.

Ham Satellite Radio

John Moore

The Ham Satellite Radio SIG is devoted to the interfacing and use of computers with all phases of Amateur Radio operations today; including Ham Satellite operations.

Holding an amateur radio license is NOT a prerequisite; we can point you in that direction if you like. With the current FCC Rules and Regulations now in effect; it’s gotten a whole lot easier, and Morse code is an option. Feel free to join us each third Tuesday of the month at 7:00 p.m. at HAL-PC Headquarters. We meet in SIG Room C. For more information contact John Moore, KK5NU at 713/960-1955 (w) or email jwm@hal-pc.org

Internet E-Commerce

Eb Guenther

Internet The HAL-PC Internet SIG meets the second Friday of the month, at HAL-PC Headquarters. The meetings start at 7 p.m. and we usually finish up by 9 p.m. or a bit later. At 7 p.m. starts the main program. This is generally a demonstration of an Internet function, new software, or methods of accomplishing an Internet task. About 8 p.m., we have a Q&A forum. There’s a large knowledge base among the SIG members, so we can answer most questions. There is no fee or pre-registration for the SIG meetings and everyone, no matter what your level of Internet expertise, is welcome.


No Meetings June, July, or August

Perry Radoff

The Legal SIG meets on the third Wednesday of the month at 7:00 p.m. at HAL-PC headquarters. We will not have any Legal SIG meetings in June, July or August (summer vacation).

MCSE Certification Windows 2003 Server

Joanne Ballato

The MCSE Certification SIG will start studying Windows 2003 server sometime in September or October, when the Microsoft study guide becomes available. The purpose of the SIG is to help people pass the Windows 2003 server exam. We meet from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. every Friday evening. While not a formal class, a typical evening will feature a lecture or video summarizing a topic, a hands-on lab demonstrating the material covered, and reviews of potential exam questions from Transcender.

While merely attending the SIG will not enable you to pass the MCSE exam, it does offer 1) a group of like-minded people to keep your interest up; 2) a resource to answer and clarify things you don’t understand; and 3) a chance for real, hands-on experience with Windows 2003 server (the SIG can have up to 8 Windows 2003 servers and/or clients on line for the class!) MCSE will be led by Joanne Ballato who is a certified Microsoft trainer, with the assistance of James Francis, a Ph. D. with 12 years of industry experience with Microsoft server products. For more information, either come to a SIG meeting, or email: joanne@hal-pc.org.

MultiMedia & MIDI

All Elements of Multimedia & MIDI

Steve Kennedy

 The Multimedia/MIDI SIG meets the first Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m. at HAL‑PC’s main office.

We cover a broad area of topics roughly divided into sound, graphics and overall production (authoring).

In the sound area, we look at programs for both digital sound and MIDI like Screenblast Acid 4, and Cakewalk’s Home Studio. There is also a large and growing selection of stock libraries for both music and sound effects. We also look at software synthesizers and hardware like music keyboards and sound modules from Roland, Yamaha, etc.

Graphics is a very large area divided into still images, video and 2D and 3D modeling and animation. Still imaging includes programs like Adobe Photoshop and Photoshop Elements, plus many third-party plugins for digital manipulation of images. We try to keep up with the digital cameras, both still and video. Video tools include Adobe’s Premiere and After Effects and Roxio’s Videowave. 2D animation includes Flash and Ulead’s Gif Animator. 3D animation includes Lightwave for general purpose modeling and animation, Bryce for landscapes and environments, and Poser for human figure animation.

Bringing all the elements together into a final production requires an authoring tool like Macromedia’s Director or Apple’s Quicktime Pro. Another approach is Kai’s Power Show ($20) for an impressive slide show with sound, wild transitions, text effects, etc.

Forget all that work related stuff for a while, join us for some fun. George Lucas can’t live forever, so somebody’s gotta be ready.

Contact Steve Kennedy at 281/479-7615 email him at skennedy@hal-pc.org.


SIG will start at 7PM on the 2nd Monday of the month. Mind Your Own Business will cover:

  • Is MYOB the right accounting program for you?
  • How to create a company data file in MYOB.
  • How to enter opening balances.
  • How to create invoices to a customer
  • How to record a payment from a customer
  • How to record an invoice from a vendor
  • How to pay a vendor
  • How to reconcile a bank account
  • Running reports
  • General Questions/Answers


Mutual Fund, Merged with Computer Investing SIG

C. J. Leleux

 The Mutual Fund SIG is being merged into the Computer Investing SIG due to my inability to continue as the SIG leader. In talking with the pertinent members of the Computer Investing SIG, we have agreed to blend into this SIG, the Mutual Fund SIG. I will still be giving presentations on Mutual Funds but will not have the responsibilities of the SIG. My health and the health of my wife demand that I spend more time in care giving than I have in the past. Old age is the price I am paying for. I have been a member of this organization since 1985 and have been privileged to serve in many volunteer groups including that of a SIG leader and of three SIGS at one time. My age has caught up with me.

Thank you C. J. for your continued efforts on behalf of HAL-PC…jhs

PC Upgrade & Troubleshooting

Every Friday

Jeff Browning

The SIG meets every Friday from 9:30 to11:30 a.m. HAL-PC members Must Call the front desk at 713/993-3300 to schedule an appointment. In order to help with your computer problems, You Must Bring your Windows OS CD and any driver software along with your computer keyboard and mouse. Do Not bring a monitor. Backup any critical data before bringing your computer. The SIG is not responsible for any loss of data.

Our SIG leader is Jeff Browning email jeffb@hal-pc.org and our co-leader is Joy Demark, email demark@hal-pc.org


From Novices to Advanced

Charles Bentley

The  The Perl Mongers SIG meets the second Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at HAL-PC headquarters. We have all level of members from complete novices to very experienced Perl programmers working in Perl daily and more than willing to share their expertise. The first part of our meeting (about an hour) is aimed at Perl novices. We primarily deal with coding tips and the various ways to get things done in Perl. The rest of the meeting consists of discussions/problem sharing and general help.

In May, we will be discussing the important Standard Modules included with each Perl distribution and how to use them. In June, we will be discussing other aspects of using Perl.

Bring your curiosity, questions, problem code, or expertise to share.

We also have a mailing list. To join, send a message to Majordomo @linuxtx.comwith “subscribe pm-houston” in the body of the message (without the quotes).


Spend More Time On  Business, not Books

Ralph Reiger

The QuickBooks SIG is comprised of business owners who want to spend time running their business   not their books. QuickBooks is a simple to learn, flexible computer program that will ease your bookkeeping chores. It’s a program design with the smallest business owner in mind. QuickBooks meets the needs of businesses that wants invoicing capabilities, must manage account receivables and payable; want detail business reporting such as accounts receivable aging, collections, profit and loss, cash flow, income statements and more; want a package with integrated easy-to-use checking and check printing; need budget capabilities; and have limited inventory requirements. If you want to know where you stand with your business, this class will put you on course. QuickBooks SIG meets on the second Saturday of each month from 9 to 11 a.m.


To Meet Monthly

Bob Hurlbert and Ann Smith

The Quicken SIG usually meets two sessions each month, the 2nd and 4th Mondays, at 7 p.m. In March, 2004, we may again put the SIG on a more course-like basis, namely by providing a 5 month, 10-session, structured outline of topics, developing the subject more systematically, and adhering to it. This should make learning easier, but we will only offer this if enough people sign up and plan to attend regularly. See previous SIG announcements for description of the course contents.

You can contact Bob Hurlbert at 713/667/2458 or email Bob atbhurl@hal-pc.org or Ann Smith at 713/861/1871 or email at annsmith@hal-pc.org and view our web page www.hal-pc.org/~bhurl/quicken .

Sybase Technology

New Time & Place

Tony Broussard

 Sybase Technology moves from 3rd Tuesday to 4th Tuesday at 3:00 p.m. Contact Tony Broussard tonyb@tradecapture.com for current SIG topics.

TMG Genealogy Software

Learn More About it!

Murphy Vital

 TMGSIG to embrace the above new title The Master Genealogist (TMG) and select that software program as the preferred utility. We decided to change our focus to TMG and to continue entertaining FAQ’s from UFT, Roots and others. You are welcome to visit us during coming meetings if you are interested as a current TMG user or a prospective user. Meetings are on the 3rd Saturday of each month (excluding July and December), from 9:00 a.m. to Noon at the HAL-PC Headquarters, 4543 Post Oak Place, Suite #200, Houston, TX 77027, and (713) 993-3300.

Visual Basic Professional

Effective User Interface Design

Tom Haessly

The Visual Basic Professional SIG is a group of software developers involved in the IT industry who gather monthly to further our professional skills by presenting, learning, and sharing technologies and techniques. Our focus includes the following areas: Visual Basic 6, Visual Basic .NET, Visual Studio .NET, Software Engineering, Best Practices, Case Studies. We have one or two presenters at each meeting. The meeting environment encourages discussion and provides a supportive atmosphere when group members present material, designs, or code. We gather for more informal discussion afterwards at a local restaurant.

For more information contact Tom Haessly at 281/376/7656 or via email thaessly@flash.net.

How to Update SIG Notes

Jean Smoorenburg

Contact Jean Smoorenburg email jeans@hal-pc.org SIG Notes are due by the 15th of the month six weeks prior to the month of publication. Please update you SIG Notes monthly

COPYRIGHT © 2010 by Houston Area League of PC Users, Inc. (`HAL-PC'). All rights reserved. No part of HAL-PC may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means—including, but not limited to, photocopying, recording, or information storage/retrieval, without express written permission from HAL-PC. However, articles may be reprinted without permission by other user groups provided the articles are reprinted unaltered and the publication acknowledges the author thereof and HAL-PC. Contact the DEX editor for information regarding the exchange of articles on diskette (DEX). HAL-PC is published monthly by HAL-PC. Subscriptions are included in the cost of membership. Trademarks used herein are indigenous to the IBM and compatibles marketplace and are hereby acknowledged. Articles, programs, reviews and advertisements are compiled without verification of accuracy or applicability to a specific task or computer. Any comments or claims are made solely by the individual author and do not necessarily represent the views of any other HAL-PC member or other person, living or dead. HAL-PC is not connected with or endorsed by International Business Machines Corporation or any other manufacturer or dealer. HAL-PCsm is the service mark of the Houston Area League of PC Users, Inc.