Link to Polar E-Connections



E-Mail Hoax
Tsunami Seafood Virus Is A Hoax

New & Improved
News Server From Polar!

Ask The Help Desk
Help With E-mail/Chat Room Acronyms

Sites Of The Month
Great Sites To Check Out In February!

Short Tutorial
Back Up (Export) Your Address Book



Greetings from Polar's E-Connections Team

Welcome to this month's edition of our eNewsletter. Included is some valuable information pertaining to helping tsunami victims and recognizing tsunami e-mail hoaxes. You'll also learn how to back up your address book and decipher chat room code. BTW ... HAND. (See the "Ask The Help Desk" section below for an interpretation.)

The goal of each of our monthly eNewsletters is to keep our subscribers informed regarding their Internet connection and to improve their Internet experience. To meet this goal, each monthly newsletter will usually contain information related to:

  1. Warnings on a recent virus or e-mail hoax that may affect you
  2. An update on new services and other local interests
  3. An answer to a frequently asked Internet related question
  4. Some fun, seasonal websites to check out
  5. A short, step-by-step tutorial on an e-mail or browser related task

We think you'll find the information contained in this newsletter to be a valuable tool for enhancing your Internet experience. If, however, you'd prefer not to receive these bulletins on a monthly basis, click HERE.

To see what's inside this issue, take a look at the index to the left and thanks for reading!

- The E-Connections Team

E-Mail Hoax - Tsunami Seafood Virus Is A Hoax

E-mail can be a great tool for relaying information to friends, relatives, and business associates. However, the Internet can also be the source for the proliferation of misinformation. One recent example is a tsunami-related hoax that has been rapidly spreading across the globe. It's been referred to as the Zulican Virus E-mail Hoax.

The message of the Zulican Virus E-mail Hoax warns consumers not to eat fish or seafood products. The reason the December 26, 2004 tsunami, which laid waste to a number of coastal areas in the Indian Ocean region, resulted in dead and diseased fish. The diseased fish, so the e-mail claims, contain a virus call Zulican. If consumers eat the fish, they will be exposed to the Zulican Virus.

The Zulican Virus e-mail message is a hoax. There is no known seafood virus called Zulican. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention located in Atlanta, Georgia, don't give any credence to this bogus virus.

The next time you receive an e-mail message that you think may be a hoax, do some quick research before forwarding the message on to family and friends. There are sites on the Web dedicated to alerting Internet users of Internet hoaxes. A few hoax information sites to bookmark in the Favorites list of your browser include:

Each of the above sites includes search tools to research archived hoaxes by name or subject.

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New & Improved - News Server From Polar!

Polar has changed UseNet News Service providers. The UseNet is an immense bulletin-board system available globally to anyone on the internet who has access to a UseNet server. The UseNet contains well over 80,000 separate topic discussions with many millions of articles. Anyone can post an article about anything. Articles may contain text discussions, programs, binary files such as pictures, music or video. Anyone with access may read these articles and retrieve the files they contain.

Our new provider has a much faster connection and an enormous amount of storage (400 Terabytes) so the completion rates and article retention (30+ days in binary groups) are much better. With the new service there are no data transfer limits. There is no authentication if connecting from PolarComm IP's. If you would like to read the newsgroups while traveling on foreign (non-PolarComm) IP's, please contact ffor a temporary access login.

The old newsreader configurations will still work, but the only address you need to point to is .

UseNet News is a much safer way to gather binary files such as music or video than the file sharing programs. Using newsgroups does not require that you make your computer accessible to others on the internet. The new service has a great completion rate on MP3's so it may be a very viable alternative for the MP3 collectors to use without needing to install spyware on their systems.

There is a basic newsreader built in to Outlook Express that is very suitable for reading text news articles and simple binary articles. To do so, simply set up a news account under Tools/Accounts using the news server .

For more complicated multipart binary downloads (like MP3's, AVI's etc) it is better to use a separate newsreader program designed for that task. We tested using the XNews newsreader. It worked great and was easy to use to decode binaries. XNews is a freeware program available at . There is a tutorial describing how to install and use XNews at .

The UseNet is a completely unregulated, unmoderated and uncensored service. As such the content is completely uncontrolled and it is easy to stumble across adult or inappropriate information and files. It is a very good idea to monitor activities of children while they are on the internet.

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Ask The Help Desk - Help With E-mail/Chat Room Acronyms

Question: I receive e-mail messages from friends that contain acronyms that I sometimes can't interpret. For instance, what are the meanings of "IAE," "GMTA," "URW," and, "FBOW?"

Answer: Those are acronyms used mainly in chat rooms. Here's a list of some commonly used e-mail/chat room acronyms and their accompanying meanings:

AAMOF - as a matter of fact
AFAIK - as far as I know
BTW - by the way
DWL - dying with laughter
FBOW - for better or worse
FOAF - friend of a friend
GFETE - grinning from ear to ear
GMTA - great minds think alike
HAND - have a nice day
HTH - hope this helps
IAE - in any event
IMO - in my opinion
IOW - in other words
JIC - just in case
LMK - let me know
LOL - laughing out loud
LTNT - long time no talk
MTCW - my two cents worth
NAP - not a problem
NRN - no reply necessary
SLFN - so long for now
TAFN - that's all for now
THX - thanks
TTFN - ta-ta for now
TTYL8R - talk to you later
URW - you are welcome
YW - you're welcome

This list is by no means exhaustive and other variations are possible.

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Great Sites To Check Out This Month

Helping Tsunami Victims .asp#DONATIONS -  As the entire world knows, a 9.0 earthquake unleashed devastating tsunamis on coastal areas throughout Asia on December 26, 2004, killing well over 225,000 people and leaving a million people homeless. If you'd like to provide financial assistance to victims, this site provides links to reputable organizations involved in the financial and humanitarian efforts in this region.

American Idol Returns More Popular Than Ever -  The American Idol television program has returned for its fourth season and the show is more popular than ever. Back are judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and, of course, the irrepressible Simon Cowell. Recent winner of the People's Choice Award for Best Reality Show, American Idol will once again allow voters to choose this season's best young musical talent. If you are looking for show bios, highlights, video clips, photos, and more, head to this site.

Find Out What Happened In History On Your Birthday -  Are you curious to know what happened in history on your birthday? Simply head to this site and select the month and day of your birth. You'll then get a full listing of interesting things that have occurred on your selected day throughout history. This would be an interesting website to show your kids or e-mail to your folks.

It's More Than Just Fun With Crayons -  Here's a fun site for the kids as well as for the young at heart. The site includes over 1,000 fun arts and crafts ideas. It also has dozens of fun, customizable e-cards that you can e-mail to your friends. For parents and teachers, the site provides lots of helpful lesson plans for a variety of curriculums, ages, and themes.

Racing On A Snow Shovel -  Does flying down a snowy mountain at high speeds while sitting on a snow shovel sound exciting to you? If you answered "yes" then New Mexico's Angel Fire Resort is the place for you this month. Each February Angel Fire Resort hosts the World Shovel Race Championships. Over 200 participants compete in various classifications over a three-day period. If shovel racing isn't your thing, you'll enjoy watching the races, viewing the snow shovel sculpture contests, and listening to the live music each evening.

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Short Tutorial - Back Up (Export) Your Address Book

Periodically backing up the contact information located in your e-mail client software's address book can be a prudent move. You'll be glad you did if you ever have a major problem with your computer. Also, if you decide to switch to a different e-mail program that has better features, you can easily import your contacts into the new program.

To back up your Outlook Express address book, follow these steps:

  1. Start Outlook Express and open your address book by clicking on its icon on the Outlook Express toolbar. Or, from the Outlook Express "Tools" menu, drop down to "Address Book."
  2. After your address book opens, go to its "File" menu, then to "Export" from the resulting drop-down menu, and select "Other Address Book" from the submenu. The "Address Book Export Tool" window will appear.
  3. Select "Text File (Comma Separated Values)" as the format and click your cursor arrow on "Export."
  4. Give your exported address book a name.
  5. Select the location where you want to export your address book using the "Browse" button. When the "Save As" dialog box appears, choose a location, and click "Save."
  6. You will come back to the "Address Book Export Tool" window. Click the "Next" button.
  7. Select the fields you want to include in your copy. If in doubt, select them all.
  8. Click "Finish" and then "OK."
  9. Click the "Close" button on the "Address Book Export Tool" window to finish up.

Now you can burn this file onto a CD or copy it over to another computer. Either way, it's great to have the peace of mind that a back up copy of your address book can give you.

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We hope you found this newsletter to be informative. It's our way of keeping you posted on the happenings at our shop. If, however, you'd prefer not to receive these bulletins on a monthly basis, click HERE.

Thanks for your business!

Best regards,

The E-Connections Team

Polar E-Connections

Polar Communications
110 4th St E
Park River, ND 58270


(We have used our best efforts in collecting and preparing the information published herein. However, we do not assume, and hereby disclaim, any and all liability for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions, whether such errors or omissions resulted from negligence, accident, or other causes.)

2005 Cornerstone Publishing Group Inc.

Trademarks: All brand names and product names used in this eNewsletter are trade names, service marks, trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.