Get Nintedo Wii Internet channel free if you're quickish

Anyone lucky enough to own a Nintendo Wii probably knows that it has built-in wifi magic, not that any games seem to use it to much effect at present. However, Nintendo has just released the final "Internet Channel" into their Wii Shop Channel. This is basically the Opera web browser, meaning you can (slightly cumbersomely and at back-to-basics TV resolution) surf the web on your Wii should you choose to.

Free safe no-effort remote backups for all

"Backing up" is perhaps the most tedious activities in the world of computerness, and definitely one of the highest in the disaster-because-you-can't-be-bothered stakes. These days most everyone with a computer should probably be backing up their data somewhere. All those beautiful "artistic" photos, those genius secret writings you do, letters begging for mercy from the bank, mp3s you "forgot" to pay for and half-finished novels are all at the mercy of the great computer gods should you not back up.

The problem is it can be boring, expensive and time-consuming to copy everything you own to a disk and put it somewhere safe. So don't...use automagic free remote backups from Mozy.

How to be (fake) popular

It's now not enough to be uber-popular with the cool crowd in real life; you need to be in there in the virtual world of slightly-geeky social networking too. Those with MySpace, Facebook, Friendster and other pointless profiles will be aware of the concept of friends (those who don't have such accounts may also have heard of them to be fair, but perhaps in a slightly different context). For many people your profile friends exist to make you look cool. Who doesn't want to see "You have 10000 friends" every time you log onto such a site to check your spam?

Not that MySpace people are notoriously choosy anyway, but for those who are so inept that they can't get anyone except Tom - the default friend for all new and lonely people - to be their "friend" but feel excess friends in the online world will make you look elite, pump up your ego and get you hot chicks for some reason, you've just missed out on a service to fulfil all your dreams.

Implementing CAPTCHA spam protection in PHP

Those people privileged enough to have websites with fancy (or non-fancy) forms on them will probably be all too aware of the evil spambots that come along and auto-fill them in with commercial nonsense, inane content or on occasions just blanks and hit the submit button. Depending on what the form does this tends to mean you'll get 1000 advertisement emails, a database full of rubbish or a few thousands complaints at spam. The Poorhouse has already discussed a few ways of dealing with the problem but another common one is illustrated here.

Tory boy confesses crimes publically...or does he?

All this web 2.0 blogging your life in public has its downers. People are forever getting arrested for confessing to crimes via their myspace pages. They don't seem to understand that what you write in public is there...perhaps forever. This is a problem that has afflicted Wales' very own Tory Boy, Chris Chapman, the youngest person to have ever been a councillor in Wales, now just 19.

He is very down with the kids, so the Poorhouse bets Cameron et al. just love him. Listen to these inspiring (if somewhat sickeningly untrue) words:

The more I read, the more I was drawn to the principles of the Conservative Party - freedom of enterprise, freedom of choice, and freedom of opportunity for all members of society, regardless of their background.

Sadly, for the Conservatives, that's not all he's been saying. And yes, the word "myspace" made the House of Commons.

Fun with binary

Uber - and I mean uber - geeks, there is another attractively nerd-ridden game out there for you. Get onto Cisco's Binary Game. It even includes a suitably hi-tech-stuff-happening-in-lame-film-type soundtrack.

Kind of like a geek form of one of the gazillion Tetris type games out there the deal is that a screen including 1s and 0s as per binary notation appears alongside a box for the equivalent decimal form of the number. Should the decimal number be filled in you should immediately turn the 1s and 0s on and off until you formed the binary equivalent. If however the box is empty, you need to convert the binary to decimal and enter it into the box. Quickly - because take too long and the rows of problems to solve will increase until the screen is overfilled with the horrors of binary notation.

And remember kiddies...there are only 10 types of people in the world etc. etc. The Poorhouse is ashamed to find this game addictive.

Ask a silly question

YouGov is a market research company who conducts surveys via the Internet. You may well have seen results from them published in newspapers and other media outlets. They have a pool of respondents who have signed up with them to give their opinions...and earn money and prizes. You'll not get rich quick; whilst the Poorhouse has made a bit of £50 from them, this has been over the period of 5 years or so. But if you don't mind answer a few questions for 50p now and then you might as well sign up *.

Most of the surveys are on proper serious subjects. Solid stuff. Plenty of politically-charged things (opinions on politicians, road tax and the like) or the reasonably regular, if rather tedious, Brandindex survey about what you think of various products. But no need to panic if you prefer a Heat to a (broads)heet (haha). With that in mind, the Poorhouse was - slightly irrationally - amused to receive the following questions.

Mystery men

Fourteen years ago or so, the New Yorker published a mini-cartoon with the tagline "On the Internet nobody know you're a dog". It is of course just as true today more often than not, and potentially greatly exacerbated in practical terms with the rise of all the chat, Instant Messaging and social networking type sites. Sure, most people are no doubt not too far away from who and what they say they are, but there is still going to be a bunch of people who make up their own new identities for the online world. Fine, if it's harmless japery, very much less so if its not.

Most notorious from the media are "chat rooms"; locations on the Internet where you can go type stuff, send pictures and so forth live. MSN Messenger and the like have that sort of facility, both one-to-one and in a more communal manner. But imagine people acted up this way in real life instead of a chat room. Funny? Weird? Disturbing? Well, watch the below short video scripted by Geoff Haley of American Beauty and Six Feet Under fame and see what you reckon.

Manly mammaries

Those of you who are avid internet users must always have known that there were plenty of sites out there for you lovers of that most useless of phenomena, man-boobs. However, to save you some googling through x billion pages with the word "boobs" on them, seems to be a fairly definitive source, to the point that the BBC has apparently approached them with a view to doing a documentary.

Onsite you can see a huge stack of images of more man boobs than you could need in one lifetime. Nonetheless, if you are lucky enough to have your own pair, they are more than happy for you to submit your prized man-melons for the world to see. Yay internet.

Disaster tracking

Danger!Danger!Disasters disasters disasters everywhere? Well now courtesy of the Havaria Information Service's Alertmap, you can see where some of the world's worrying disasters are happening in real-time. As Chicken Yoghurt note it really looks a bit like scary sci-fi. Except it's real, and you can click on any icon for a full report of the problem concerned. Or if you're in the middle of an epidemic of bird-flu related earthquakes that they've somehow missed, submit your own.

If you're a real disasterophile then, and wait long enough for the page to load, you'll see big lists of earthquakes, volcanoes, massive fires and so on from the past 24 hours. Who would have thought the world was ravaged so?

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