Thursday, April 19, 2018
News Roundup

Solutions: Options are out there for free PDF creation tools

Effective Jan. 10, PDF creation tools will no longer be offered through Acrobat.com and will be available only through Adobe for a low monthly price. Do you have any recommendations to replace this formerly free capability?

There are many free PDF creation programs such as PrimoPDF, which can be found at download.cnet.com (search for PrimoPDF). For Microsoft Office 2010 users, that capability is built-in (Save to PDF…). A free add-in for Office 2007 is available at www.microsoft.com/download; search for SaveAsPDFandXPS.exe.

About a month ago, I received an email that claimed to be from one of my sons. His name was in the "from" window of the email. The only thing in the message part of the email was a link. I clicked on the link, which took me to what looked like a website infomercial. I thought it was a joke. Later, while talking with my son via Skype, I mentioned the email, but he said he had not sent it and suggested that I forward it to him so that he could investigate. I recently received a similar email from my sister.

These emails may be spoofed (made to look like it is from someone other than the real sender) or perhaps you or someone you know inadvertently made their address book available through a social website. It is not uncommon and is not necessarily a virus. It's always a good idea to report this to the person being spoofed. To be on the safe side, tell them to consider changing their email password. You should do this as well.

The Windows 8 interface is radically different from previous versions, nothing like what I was used to. Is there an option that will allow Windows 8 to use the older, more familiar interfaces?

This is a common sentiment for many people regarding the new Windows 8 interface. I recently helped a good friend transition his old Windows XP PC to a new Windows 8 PC. Like many, he felt a little lost with the new interface. Unfortunately, there isn't a built-in Windows 8 option for changing the interface. However, I came across a free program by the name of Classic Shell (classicshell.sourceforge.net). After a quick and easy installation, the familiar Start button was back along with all the familiar folder-structured menu of programs and options. The Windows live tile interface is still there, but one click to the Desktop and you're back in familiar territory.

I've heard that Microsoft Security Essentials is not compatible with Windows 8. Why?

Windows 8 comes with a very robust antivirus built in to the operating system. It is now called Windows Defender (once again). I know the revolving names are confusing, but this was a good move by Microsoft. If for some reason you decide to install a third-party antivirus solution made for Windows 8, you must first disable Windows Defender.

Send questions to [email protected] or Personal Tech, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Questions are answered only in this column.

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Two Florida deputies shot, killed at restaurant in Gilchrist County

Two Florida deputies shot, killed at restaurant in Gilchrist County

Two Gilchrist County sheriff’s deputies were shot and killed at a restaurant about 3 p.m. Thursday, according to a statement from the sheriff’s office.The deputies were at Ace China restaurant in downtown Trenton when a man shot them through the rest...
Updated: 19 minutes ago
The St. Pete Pier takes another step forward

The St. Pete Pier takes another step forward

ST. PETERSBURG — Development of the city’s long-awaited pier advanced another step Thursday.The City Council approved a $15 million construction contract and additional money to design a waterside restaurant, build a playground and ferret out naming ...
Updated: 22 minutes ago
Out early: Here’s the Bucs’ full 2018 schedule

Out early: Here’s the Bucs’ full 2018 schedule

TAMPA — How good can the Bucs be in 2018? Fans will get a good sense in the first three weeks, as Tampa Bay opens the year with three of its toughest games, all against reigning division champions.The Bucs open 2018 in New Orleans on Sept. 9 at...
Updated: 1 hour ago
FHP: Distracted driver plunges more than 50 feet off I-275

FHP: Distracted driver plunges more than 50 feet off I-275

ST. PETERSBURG — A distracted driver walked away unscathed after his car plunged 50 feet off Interstate 275, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.Thomas Highhouse, 61, of Pinellas Park, was driving his 2016 Chevrolet Camaro south on Interstate 275...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Lightning’s Hedman a Norris finalist again

Lightning’s Hedman a Norris finalist again

The Lightning's Victor Hedman is a finalist for the second consecutive year for the Norris Trophy, given to the top defenseman in the league. The other two finalists are Drew Doughty of the Kings and P.K. Subban of the Predators, it was announced Thu...
Updated: 1 hour ago
St. Petersburg police remove disabled adults from ‘deplorable’ assisted living facilities

St. Petersburg police remove disabled adults from ‘deplorable’ assisted living facilities

ST. PETERSBURG — Beef jerky, mayonnaise and Altoids mints were the only edible things in view inside one of the houses. There was no running water. The refrigerator was empty. A bed sat on top of the deteriorating living room floor. Cigarette butts b...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Police: Knife-wielding burglar breaks into house, says ‘I’m the cops’

Police: Knife-wielding burglar breaks into house, says ‘I’m the cops’

LARGO — Detectives are seeking the public’s help in identifying a man who broke into a home early Thursday morning and confronted the owners with a knife.The incident took place about 3:40 a.m. at a townhouse at 7360 Ulmerton Road, according to Largo...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Deputies: Man broke into house, set it on fire and stole their dog

Deputies: Man broke into house, set it on fire and stole their dog

SEMINOLE — A Seminole man was arrested on allegations that he burglarized a home, set it on fire and stole the homeowner’s dog, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. Austin Lang, 19, now faces numerous charges of burglary, arson and poss...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Deputies: 15-year-old threatened attack on River Ridge High School

Deputies: 15-year-old threatened attack on River Ridge High School

NEW PORT RICHEY—A 15-year-old student was arrested Wednesday on allegations that he threatened to stage a shooting attack on River Ridge High School, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.The student attended Schwettman Education Center, dep...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Deputies: 19-month-old child hospitalized after being found in pond

Deputies: 19-month-old child hospitalized after being found in pond

NEW PORT RICHEY — A 19-month-old child was taken to the hospital Thursday after being found in a pond, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.Deputies were called at 12:31 p.m. to the 4700 block of Crestknoll Drive.An adult was watching the c...
Updated: 2 hours ago