REALTORSÂ® are generally the second point of contact for individuals wanting to know more about the processes and procedures for real estate transactions. For this reason alone, it is important that REALTORSÂ® have a comprehensive understanding of their state’s laws, regulations and any additional information to help answer questions brought by individuals. An informed REALTORÂ® is a successful one.
One of the most common questions people will ask an agent is, “How much home can I afford?” A REALTORÂ® who is informed and valuable to their clients can give a general idea of what the costs are in a typical loan, including the monthly payment and annual property taxes. Although the client will always receive formal financing information from their lender, it is important for REALTORSÂ® to keep up on the information as it pertains to loans and interest rates via various websites, newspapers, and trade magazines that publish this information.
Useful Sources of Real Estate Information
One of the most valuable sources of information for REALTORSÂ® would be a recently published book on real estate principles for that agent’s state. In a principles book, a REALTORÂ® can find out basic information on zoning, home construction and general laws. It is very important for a REALTORÂ® stay updated on state and local regulations, as there are changes consistently in the legal areas of the real estate field.
REALTORSÂ® may generally think of themselves as salespeople, however a good REALTORÂ® will be seen as not only a salesperson, but a teacher as well. The process of either buying or selling a home is daunting to many individuals. Once a REALTORÂ® can demonstrate themselves to be an extensive database of information, they are sure to gain a client’s trust for present and any future transactions
I remember the glorious, life-changing day in 1997 when I first got internet access at home. I was in high school, and I had just visited a friend who was chatting online. I don’t know why I found talking to hundreds of strangers about nothing so appealing, but before the day was out I had internet access at my own home.
It would be the understatement of the century to say that our lives have changed dramatically since the internet went mainstream. My generation was fortunate enough to have the internet enter our daily lives as teenagers, giving us a taste of both the dark ages and the age of the “internets,” as George W. Bush might say. Our parents’ generation made it through their teen and child-rearing years without the help of the internet. Those a few years younger than us can’t imagine life without it.
Even though I lived on this earth for 17 years without the internet as a part of my daily life, I still have a hard time remembering just what the heck I did before I had internet access. Before my memories of the pre-WWW world disappear, I’d like to list a few ways people may have spent their time before the internet.
Buying music in stores
Really, people used to do that. If we wanted a single song we bought the “single.” Portable music was available on the Walkman, and it was awesome! Just a word of warning in case you ever come across an old Walkman, kids. Don’t try to shove the headphones in your ears. It didn’t work that way then. Rock the big, bulbous foam headphones externally as God intended it.
How old school is that? If instant news was your thing you better be wherever the news was happening. Back in the day, “googling” something probably meant you were sticking funny looking eyes on it. While fun, it wasn’t very effective in a crisis.
Thinking they had a disease…when a doctor told them they had a disease.
That funny looking rash on your ankle was just a rash back then. It wasn’t a symptom of a rare disease that affects approximately 4.5 people in the U.S. each year. If you needed medical advice, you either took advice from your grandma (before the internet you didn’t know it might kill you), or you went to the doctor. The doctor was always right back then, too. You weren’t more of an expert on your condition than he was, so you listened to him (unless Grandma said he was wrong).
Having actual sex with actual humans
If she was really a guy you found out a whole lot sooner!
Watching “viral” videos…
on America’s Funniest Home Videos. Sadly, Bob Saget was your only source of entertainment when it came to viewing stupid things other people were doing. When something funny hit your husband in the crotch and you happened to have your 50 pound video camera rigged up and ready to go, you sent the video straight to Bob for the world to see.
Laughing out loud
Nobody heard a joke and said, “I’m laughing out loud (lol),”or “Gee guys, I’m rolling on the floor laughing (rofl).” See, if you were in fact doing these things, the person you were talking to would have witnessed it. If something was funny, we actually laughed.
Not knowing details of their great uncle’s romantic shenanigans
Social networking has opened up a weird, entertaining, scary, addictive world where you can find out more about a person in 30 seconds than you used to be able to find out in 30 years. You can find out how your doctor likes his coffee and what your grandma does after a night of drinking. (Didn’t know your grandma drinks? You do now!) In the old days, people went to their graves without knowing that their cousin secretly feared toilet paper, or their uncle enjoyed dressing as a woman on Tuesdays.
For the most part, the internet has changed life for the better. I can’t imagine where technology will take us from here, but I can’t wait to find out!
These days personal computers are found in most homes, and internet access is common. Children frequently use this technology online to play games, complete schoolwork, or communicate with friends. Chat rooms and social networking sites are also very popular, especially with teenagers. Yet every parent knows that there are both images and people on the internet that we would prefer our children not come in contact with. So how do parents protect their children online, especially when we cannot always be there?
First of all, make sure your children are familiar with both the internet and the house rules. Let them know what web sites they are allowed to visit. Take advantage of parental controls, and turn on pop up blockers. Discuss with them how to deal with unwanted contact on the internet, and what is appropriate for discussion online.
Set your child up an email account, and configure the address book with known contacts. Do not allow them to open email or accept instant messages from people they do not know.
Make sure your child knows to never give out personal information on the internet. Any kind of membership account or subscription service should be set up by the parent to ensure that it is a safe and legitimate site.
Children should also be strongly cautioned about anyone they meet online, whether in a chat room or a site such as MySpace. Again, they should never give out personal information, and should not trust anyone they do not know in person.
Parents should also take an active interest in what their children do online. Keep an eye on what web sites they are visiting, who they are talking to, and what they are doing while on the internet. If you cannot be there to see for yourself, check your cache or question them about their activities. Unless you have reason not to trust them, make sure that your questions are not meant to doubt their honesty, but to make sure they are safe. If they feel like you do not trust them, it could backfire on you. Make sure you discuss anything that you are uncomfortable with as well as any concerns they may have.
The internet can be a wonderful tool, but only in the right hands. We have to teach our children how to use it. As parents, we also have to make sure that our children are always safe. As long as we take the appropriate steps and teach our children to be cautious, they should be able to enjoy a safe and rewarding online experience.
Advertising your web site is necessary in order to generate traffic and potential sales revenue. The Internet has expanded incredibly, so competition is fierce. Without proper advertising, you run the risk of losing customers, sales, and eventually the entire business.
Tools for Advertising Your Web Site
There are many options in advertising your web site. You can employ traditional means such as sending letters, making phone calls, or discussing your web site in specific locations. You should also be sure to always have business cards available to hand out to potential customers.
There are some business events that may provide a satisfactory environment for advertising your web site. You can display products or discuss your business plans at trade shows, trade conferences, or other business meeting locations. You may also want to contact potential customers by developing a newsletter that can be sent by mail, e-mail, or viewed on your web site.
The Internet provides many quick and convenient ways to locate potential customers. You can develop a target list of people who would likely respond to your web site by searching for information online. Some companies will even offer programs to assist you in advertising and creating a customer base.
Once you’ve been around the Internet for a while, you tend to notice certain trends. For example, in every forum thread, there will be one person insisting that something’s not real. That’s because, just as in real life, there are quite a few people on the Internet that are total jerks to everyone, and therefore are hated by the entirety of the Internet.
People who insist that things are photoshopped. In every forum, there’s one guy who watches too much House and believes his abilities of perception to be absolutely infallible. He’ll constantly remind everyone of the fact that he’s seen a lot of photoshops, and insist that every picture, including famous pictures, are shopped. He’ll also insist that every video is fake, and that every celebrity story is staged. The thing is, nobody on the Internet cares. We like to live in an imaginary bubble world where dogs where funny hats and people accidentally fart out a plum.
Conspiracy nuts. The Internet lets people express their views, even if those views are completely, 100% retarded. Therefore, any time you go to check out the latest pictures taken by a NASA satellite, you’ll have to wade through comments talking about how those pictures are fake (see above) and that the moon landing was fake and 9/11 was fake and the Internet’s fake and the only real thing in the universe is the corporation that’s been running America for the last hundred and fifty years.
3.People who post lolcats. Pictures of cats with superimposed misspelled captions was funny for ten minutes back in 2006. At this point, we’re all just wishing that these Internet cutesy-types that post the same damned SNAKE CAT pictures or worse, blanks of their own cat asking everyone in a forum to CAPTION IT! would go get mauled by a lion. At which point we’ll all be off to the side yelling, “JESUS CHRIST, IT’S A LION! GET IN THE CAR!” and laughing maniacally.
Cop-out, hack writers who write lame lists. Yes, of course lists are an easy to write, easy to read format, but that doesn’t stop these writers from being annoying–you’ll be wandering around on your favorite news aggregate site, perhaps reading user submitted content, and you’ll see a list, which you’ll click on, but you know that the entire time you’re just hating yourself for being so gullible. These writers should be completely ashamed of themselves.
What types of people on the Internet annoy you? Post in our comments section below, but be careful not to actually annoy people yourself.
As a buyer considering a move to a new home, there are many factors in deciding where to settle. The range of factors can vary from client to client but usually includes things like weather, job location, and proximity to family members. What seems to be the most important factor in deciding a final destination is the makeup of a community.
Finding neighborhood information can be a time consuming task for a buyer when he or she does not a real estate agent available to help. Real estate agents have access to property profile reports which they obtain from their title companies. These property profiles contain many aspects of a neighborhood’s composition–information potential buyers like to know.
Provide Your Clients with Neighborhood Information
Property profiles generally contain information about the area surrounding the subject property. There are listings of public and private schools at all grade levels and their respective academic test scores. There is also a brief guide to educate a buyer on the rating system used to score schools. Another commonly used feature of the property profile is to inform potential buyers about what kinds of businesses are in the area.
Real estate agents have come to depend on their title companies to supply their clients with neighborhood information that is compiled in an easy to read and understand report. Many buyers and agents alike do not have the time needed to determine which school district a home is located in, where the nearest doctor is located, or whether there are potentially objectionable businesses located in the area. A property profile can answer countless questions about a neighborhood yet requires just seconds to process and prepare.
KidRocket is a cool browser that allows your kids to visit certain websites and play games. This is a great browser because you do not have to worry about your child running across porn and other things that you don’t want your little one exposed too.
In the KidRocket browser there are 12 different sites that they can visit in the demo version. I have not purchased the full version so I am writing on what you receive in the demo version. The 12 sites are PBS Kids, Sesame Street, Lego, Nat Geo Kids, Disney, Starfall, Crayola, SFS Kids, Nick jr, Cartoon Network, Noggin, and TVO Kids.
In the KidRocket browser there are also many different games that the children can play. Some of the games include Pacman, tetris, Space Invaders, and Tic Tac Toe. There are many games that you can play online with the KidRocket browser.
In this KidRocket browser, you have the option of turning the internet on and off. If you just want to allow the child to play games and do things offline, you can click the icon at the top of the window and it will turn the internet off. To turn the internet back on, simply click the icon again. This icon is the last icon at the top of the window.
At the bottom of the browser you will see the timer that is running. This timer will time how long you have been using the KidRocket browser. This is a great tool. If you have set a time limit for your child to be on the computer, you can use the timer to keep up with that.
There are also other sections in this browser that are very useful. You will find the Art section at the start up of the program. This section will allow the child to paint or play the starbrite game. There is also a math flashcard section. You select the a sign and practice your math skills.
There is an admin area for parents. In this section you can lock the browser so that the child can not close the browser out. They can only stay in the browser. This is great for younger children. You can turn the KidRocket browser on, lock it, and turn them loose and let them have fun.
You may find that this browser if not for you if you have older children. There are many more browsers out there for children. I’m trying out different ones, so I’ll let you know about the different ones that I find. There is so much porn and ugly stuff on the internet that we need something to protect our little one’s eyes. My two boys like to look on google images for skateboarding and nascars, that’s not even safe. I will pass on any more browsers that I find.
Welcome to the world of the Internet! On the wonderful World Wide Web, we see so many sites that allow us to become hooked, such as MySpace, YouTube, etc. But there is a downside to the Internet such as hackers and online sexual predators. Most of us do not know that animals are also being abused on the Internet and at alarming rates.
Many of these animal websites sell images that show abuse of these defenseless creatures. In various cases, there are laws that prohibit showing and selling images of animals being abused.
One of these laws is known as the Crush Act, which punishes the culprits for lewd conduct and overall animal cruelty for the purpose of selling these horrible images across state lines and over the Internet. Depending on the severity of the case, individuals may be fined or even spend up to five years in prison.
This Act should be applied to the overall abuse on animals. But this law is suitable for the websites and videos that demonstrate literal animal abuse and also to manufacturers and sites that promotes these images. But in order for this law to really be applied, depiction of actual abuse on websites and video must be seen in clear view. However, many of these animal websites promote animal cruelty under a couple of conditions: if they do not require the visitors to pay for access and/or selling images. Also, these companies can also sell animal images that display animal cruelty behavior, but the images should be in fabrication and no cruelty act has been conducted. Now we know that many of these animals are being abused in the most ridiculous ways. On the news, we are constantly hearing about online child sexual predators from documentary shows such as, “How to Catch a Predator.” The majority of people who tune in to these shows are outraged at what we see. We have the mind to pulverize them, right? Of course, we do!
When individuals hear about this, he/she would want to take action. Do you know that some of these animals are sexually abused? It is shocking, but this is very true. It is another type of abuse that is known as zoophilia. Zoophilia is the type of disturbing attachment to animals that are romantic. This is unheard of in terms of the mass media. Zoophilia also has some type of religious connection through an organization called “The First Church of Zoophilia,” which is in charge of sites that give membership and salvation to individuals who are sacrificing animals. To most people, this is a very inhumane act. Although there are fifty states in the Union, but only thirty states have acknowledged that animal sexual abuse is in existence. However, animal sexual abuse is a misdemeanor instead of a felony. The other twenty states have not made it as a criminal act.
This type of news is very appalling and only people with a mental blockage would consider such activity. Selling images of living beings, whether they are humans and/or animals, being abused is full of inhumanity. These abusers should get a clue and should spend a generous amount of time in prison for the abuse of animals, just like culprits go to jail for misusing a human being. Animals are God’s creatures, too!
As of Windows XP, Microsoft bundled a firewall software package into their systems. It evolved and improved over the last few revisions, but it’s still lacking what other dedicated software packages include. Administration of the MS firewall can be accessed through the control panel.
Plus: It’s free and it comes with Windows by default. It’s extremely simple to use.
Minus: It still feels somewhat primitive.
ZoneAlarm: For years, ZoneAlarm has been at the top of the list (or the only one on the list) of firewall comparisons. It’s currently a very stable and mature product. Just out their evaluation at http://www.zonelabs.com and peer into the logs. You would be surprised at how many hack attempts are made in a day.
Plus: Mature, full-featured product.
Minus: I’ve had a bad experience with ZoneAlarm getting too much in the way.
Norton/McAfee Personal Firewall: To be honest, both of these programs feel similar to me. They’re both good solid programs that one can easily bundle with other complementary software (such as their anti-virus products).
For a more verbose comparison, check:
In a Linux environment, I’ve had good experience with iptables. However, I couldn’t find anything that beat PF, the openBSD packet filter.
*Please note: In a commercial environment and/or when computers are more frequently exposed to the Internet (such as when they’re on broadband connections), an additional solution is advised. Most broadband routers/modems have built-in firewall capabilities. I strongly suggest consulting the user’s manual and enable any packet filtering / access control built into the router or firewall. This creates a closer secure connection to your ISP and relieves your computer’s CPU usage to other things.
Keeping our children safe is ultimately the parents responsibility. If we take our kids to the park, It is up to us to make sure they are safe. If we let them sleep over, It is still up to us to ensure it is a safe environment. Anywhere we take our children, we constantly lookout for and ensure their safety.
Then why is it different when we enter the online arena.
If you were at the park and saw a complete stranger talking to your 13 year old girl, You would be going over there and finding out what they wanted with your little girl, Many people would be incensed to catch a 37yearold man befriending their 12 year old boy. Why then is it an invasion of privacy to look at your Childs internet history, chat logs and text messages.
There are many programs that promote safe internet viewing, But the main way to ensure your child’s safety in implementing ground rules first and foremost at the start of the child’s internet experience.
Maintaining control over your child, especially over the internet, is not only safe but I believe is mandatory for good parenting.
I know some people will cry control freak or parental smothering, but If it protects the child, they will appreciate it when they are older.
The biggest problem is that many children know more about computers than their parents. It is a good investment to get some computer training, or get on the computer yourself. The more you use the computer the more you will feel comfortable with it and the more you know about the computer gives you more knowledge to be able to assess situations as they come up.
The location of a computer is of utmost importance. Having the computer in a high traffic area, ensures that you can easily keep an eye on what is happening. Never let a child have access to the internet from the closed doors of their bedroom. I heard of a boy that was running a site from his bedroom where people would pay to see him naked and masturbating. Imagine the parents horror when they found out, had the computer been in the main thoroughfare of the house, this would never have happened. Allowing unsupervised access of the internet is a bad parenting technique. If you let your child wander through the city, it would be neglect, Letting your child browse the internet unsupervised is no less neglect. Children are very curious, they will lookup sites that they have heard from at school, from friends, and they will click on ads that look good.
Black and White lists
I am a big advocate in using white and black lists. What is a white and black list? Basically a white list is a list of sites that are accessible to the browser, a black list is a list of sites that are blocked from view. You use either the white list or the black list as you are viewing the internet.
Using a white list.
White lists are the best protection that you can give a child. Only the sites that appear on the white list are accessible to the browser. If disney.com is on the list then I can look at any pages that are under disney.com, including disney.com/anypage_iwant_to_see.html. If cars.com is not on my white list, I am unable to view anything on that website.
As you can imagine, it does take time to prepare a white list. Look at the sites you want to allow and copy them into the white list. Then activate the white list with a password. Even though it may take time, it is well worth the effort. It is quite easy if you start when the kids are little and all they want to view is a couple of favourite games sites, then as they grow, the white list grows too. As children become teenagers and want to expand their internet usage, for assignments and even work, you can supervise internet usage and add recently visited sites to the white list. I would strongly advocate using a white list when you are not their to supervise. Sometimes a white list may not be appropriate due to the limitations., there is the blacklist option.
Using a black list.
When using a blacklist, If a site comes up that is on the black list, the browser will not allow content to be seen. This means that anything that is not on the blacklist is accessible. If toysareus.com is on the blacklist, then no one can look at it, but if pornography.com is not on the blacklist, then anyone can look at it. Often blacklists are included with software and can be updated as new sites are found to be inappropriate.
A white list is much safer than a blacklist, but again the use of such lists are very much an individual decision. Popular internet Protection have black and white lists included, like trend micro internet security protection.
Social networking sites and chat sites
The question of social networking sites and chat sites is easy. Do not allow them at all. If you explain to your child that social networking sites are not safe from the start, they will have an understanding that that is just the rules. Primary children are not really interested in social networking but teenage children live for it. The problem is that they could very well die for it too.
There was a case in Melbourne, Australia where two friends encouraged each other to commit suicide in a bizarre suicide pact, that was instigated over an internet social networking site. There are many news stories of children being groomed over chat sites and finally abused when they meet in the real world.
Oh.. I can hear the cry of “but you can set it to personal so only your friends can see you”. Yes, this is true, but do a search for ‘private profile hacks” and you will see how secure your private profile is.
Instant messaging can be a fun way to keep in contact with friends and family. You really need to use caution and know exactly who your child is talking to. You can have a family Instant Messaging account so that you know who is on the contacts list. I know recently of young girl who met up with someone she did not know through Instant Messaging. She had been messaging him for months, a friend of a friend, and one day decided to go and meet him in person. This type of behaviour is the exact thing that I am trying to help stop. Had this girls parents stopped her from messaging anyone she did not know in person, it would not have happened.
A great way to keep track of exactly what is going on, on your computer is by way of a key logger.
A key logger records any keystrokes used on the computer. For IM it only records one way of the conversation, but you have an idea what is going on. Any mouse clicks are not able to be recorded, so a site clicked on from another site is unable to be determined in this way. There are free key loggers available, a good one is revealer keylogger.
Often look at your internet history logs. If somebody is deleting them, be very suspicious of why they have been deleted. While talking about browser history, be aware of the browsers installed in your computer. If you only use Internet Explorer and Firefox is installed, who is using Firefox, check the Firefox history as well. If a browser is not being used, delete it.
In 2003, Family Safe Media stated a statistic of some 2.5 million emails a day are pornographic. Instil in your child to never reply to an email if they don’t know who it is from. Not to mention the danger of computer viruses that can be installed on your computer. Regularly check emails and know who they are from. Invasion of privacy? No, not at all, you would want to know who your child is talking to down the street, Online is no different.
The unobtrusive method of “spying ” on email is setting up their email address and keeping a copy on the server that you can log into and look at. Talk to your email service provider about how to do this. Or better still, just have one family email address that everyone uses.
The best way to know what is going on with your child is communicating, face to face, with the child. Find a place to talk to your child from a young age, around the dinner table, with the family and one on one with you and your child, take them out for a regular milkshake, or use saying goodnight as a time to go over the day with your child. Starting this type of communication from early on will help when the children get to be teenagers. If you implement a talk , later on in life, it may take time for the child to open up, so don’t give up after the first milkshake.