THE PERFECT WORD

wordperfect home and studentThe latest version of WordPerfect is $99 at Walmart, a big reason why people take it instead of Microsoft Office, which is $220 for the Home edition or $99 a year for Office 365. But there are other good reasons why you might prefer WordPerfect.

Lawyers like WordPerfect because of its legal tools, such as redaction, “Bates” numbering, document comparisons and legal templates. Writers like it because it makes it easy to publish your book to the Kindle; the new “X7” version handles other e-Readers as well. If you choose “eBook Publisher” from X7’s “Project” menu, WordPerfect prepares your manuscript for electronic publishing to the Kindle, Nook or Sony e-Reader, saving many steps. Read more »

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LASER PRINTER WINS OUT AGAIN

PRINTERWe used to point out that laser printers were cheaper in the long run because the ink was cheaper. Now some of the printers themselves are cheaper.

Inkjets are still much of what you see when you go to an office supply store, especially the all-in-one (fax, copy, scan) units. These seem like a great idea, but we’ve found that the individual features of the all-in-one aren’t great. And what’s more they never have been; if you want a scanner, buy a scanner.

But the all-in-ones are cheap. So we’ve bought models from HP, Epson and Canon, the major makers. How can you resist? As usual, we’ve been dissatisfied. We should ask ourselves over and over: why do they sell these things so cheap? Because they make tons of money on the ink, of course.

But what about the print quality? The color is poor compared to the glossy magazine quality of a laser. But enough already. Having spent $388 to buy Canon’s top-of-the-line color inkjet – the “PIXMA PRO-100 Color Professional,” we junked it and went back to an Okidata color laser. Read more »

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SHOPPING TIP

shoppingWe’re constantly pitched about new shopping sites, but here’s a tip that may beat all of them: type the word “coupon” after the name of the store or product. Bob typed “Lands End Coupon” and got 20 percent off from LandsEnd.com. Joy typed “Niemen Marcus coupon” and saw dresses for 70 percent off. But they were still too expensive. Bob typed “ceramic knives coupon” and got 50 percent off on his favorite Kyocera knives.

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TIDY DOG

TIDY DOGTidy Dog” trains a dog to put away his own toys. They reached their fundraising goal on Kickstarter.com, the crowd-funding site, so you can now buy it at TheTidyDog.com for $65.

It’s worth watching the Tidy Dog video. A dog figures out that every time he drops a toy into the bin, it dispenses a treat. Smart dogs will soon figure out that they can drop in your shoes, wallet, newspaper and anything else lying around. Some people will be ecstatic over a tidy home; others will notice their dog getting fat. Of course, lazy dogs may not care about the treats. In that case, if you want the toys picked up, you do it.

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SAT TEST PREPARATION

khan academyKhanAcademy.org has free preparation for the SAT college entrance exam and other tests. They’re offering hundreds of previously unreleased math, reading and writing questions from old SAT tests, and 200 videos showing step-by-step solutions to each question.

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ELEVEN STEPS TO A PERFECT LOGO

logoEleven Steps to a Perfect Logo” has good tips.

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DOLPHIN ASKS FOR HUMAN HELP AND GETS IT

dolphin Dolphin Asks a Diver for Help, Diver Lends a Hand.” In this amazing video, a dolphin gets untangled from a fishing line by swimming to a diver for help and staying with him until he’s freed.

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THE 22 MOST BEAUTIFULLY SECLUDED PLACES IN THE WORLD

an island in IcelandThe 22 Most Beautifully Secluded Places In The World” are lovely beyond belief, including an island in Iceland, the steppes of Kazakhstan, the Peak District in England, Mount Shuksan of Washington state, parts of Ireland and all over the world.

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16 ROOMS WITH A VIEW YOU’LL WISH YOU HAD

rooms-with-a-view-0716 Rooms With a View You’ll Wish You Had” has some of the most beautiful views we’ve ever seen in London, Cape Cod, the Australian Alps and beyond.

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ILLUMINATED DIORAMAS FROM HAND-CUT PAPER

illuminated dioramasThis Couple Makes Beautiful Illuminated Dioramas From Hand-Cut Paper” has some remarkable art works cut from paper.

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