Once set up, the parental controls and permissions restrictions for an account in OS X should be fairly secure for a booted and running system. Despite this, a number of parents are running into problems where their kids are cleverly getting around the parental restrictions. Here are the ways they are doing this, and how to best combat them.… Read more
The much-anticipated and controversial Modern Warfare 2 finally arrives in retail stores today, which gives us an excuse to invite AOL GameDaily.com's Libe Goad to give us some insight into all the action. Although it's definitely not the first Call of Duty game, Libe and Jeff tell us it's the most controversial of the pack, with disturbing scenes that let you take the side of terrorists.
It's hard to believe anything can be scarier than making the trip down to Chinatown, NYC, to pick up your "advanced" copy, though. Don't call it a bootleg; the copies they're selling down there are actually legit, a first for Canal St. merchants. And although they cost the same as copies from the big box stores, Modern Warfare 2 has been available at these "select retailers" for the past week! Good to know I live in such a respectable part of NYC.
Yesterday's episode sparked such a heated conversation about censorship, video game and movie ratings, and parenting video gamers that we're happy to revisit the topics today, with Libe's valuable industry input, of course! This time, we address the world of online gaming that's brought a new level of offensive material to young people who might not understand the implications of their trash-talking. With no moderators to police Xbox Live or PSN, players are allowed to communicate directly with each other, which often results in racist and misogynistic epithets. Tune in to today's episode to listen to our opinion on what should be done.
Finally, we hate to take the spotlight away from Libe, but we've been resisting the urge to announce our guest for the past week. We finally got the green light, so we're happy to announce that Tony Hawk will be in The 404 studio on Monday, November 16, to chat with us about his latest game, Tony Hawk: Ride and maybe even do a live in-studio demo! Start thinking up questions, as we'll most likely be taking questions from the audience as well.EPISODE 464 Subscribe in iTunes audio | Suscribe to iTunes (video) | Subscribe in RSS Audio | Subscribe in RSS Video… Read more
Parents have to fight hard to find new ways to get through to their offspring.
Naturally, there are those who might think it pointless to bother communicating with them at all. Yet somehow parents keep trying like the spurned lovers of Cleopatra.
According to The Washington Post, the latest trend in parenting patter is to nag your kids by text.
The article points out some touching nuances. Kids don't like picking up the phone when a parent calls. A text that says, for example, "u little dolt. Where the hell are u?" can be read rather more … Read more
A software product sold to protect children from predators, cyberbullying, and visiting inappropriate Web sites is also collecting information about what the kids are saying, and its publisher is selling that data--in aggregate form--to other companies for marketing purposes.
In an interview, Echometrix CEO Jeffrey Greene said that the company doesn't collect or report the names or any identifying information about the children. "We never, ever, ever can identify who the kid is who is saying it. In fact, we don't have any information about the individual child," he said.
I know it's hard to prevent your children from gaining an early fascination with drugs, violence, weapons, World of Warcraft, and illicit personal behavior.
The phenomenon that is Webkinz is but one brave attempt.
In case you inhabit a particularly large hole in Nova Scotia, Webkinz turns your children into loving, caring humans online.
On the Webkinz site, your children can look after their new pets. Well, as long as they buy the physical, three-dimensional stuffed version at a friendly neighborhood store.
So it is my heartfelt privilege to be able to tell you that should you choose to … Read more
I know many people have strong feelings about euthanasia. And who am I to suggest that old people have few uses?
However, who is Michael Amatrudo to put his parents up for sale on Craigslist?
According to NBC New York, Amatrudo's wife is used to his sense of humor. You might conclude, though, that she has suffered enough. For her loving husband decided, just for a little fun, to put his parents up for sale on America's most useful human exchange.
Amatrudo's ad was a poem to filial love: "I got lots of use out of … Read more
I am not a big fan of parental controls, but that might be just because I'm not a parent.
If you are not like me and have been wondering if paying a yearly fee for the comprehensive parental control feature that accompanies the lackluster iBoss router is worth it, Netgear may have just made your life a lot easier.
Netgear announced Tuesday the release of Live Parental Controls, a comprehensive Web-filtering feature it has developed in collaboration with OpenDNS.
The new feature enables parents and small businesses to restrict Internet access to all the devices that connect via the … Read more
Porn Terminator allows users to scan their computers for objectionable content, analyzing images based on skin tone. We found the program to be surprisingly effective at picking up on pornography, although it's not perfect.
The interface is simple and will be easy for anyone to navigate. Users need only select the directory they want to search and click Scan Now. The program searches for objectionable images, movies, and Web sites, and then allows users to review the findings and delete content as needed. We were a bit skeptical that the program could differentiate pornographic content from other images, but … Read more
There are lots of Internet filtering products on the market that enable parents to block certain types of websites such as pornography, hate sites, or sites that promote alcohol or drug use. Most of these products run on PCs or Macs by sitting between the operating system and the browser and checking any requested sites to make sure they're not blocked. The products generally do a good job blocking requests from protected PCs, but most don't work with game consoles, Wi-Fi-equipped iPhones or iPod Touches, or any other device that isn't running the software.
Father's Day is Sunday, which means that it's time to celebrate Dad. He and Mom most likely raised you with the help of relatives, babysitters, and teachers, as well as a few books, toys, and TV programs. These days, however, there are also a variety of online resources designed to make good parenting a little bit easier.
From finding nannies to keeping children occupied, there's a site for any parent in this roundup.Parent resources
Babble Soft After you sign up for Babble Soft, you're brought to your home page, which allows you to input information about you and your child. The site also asks you to input your baby's caretakers, including their name and relation so you have everything you need to identify them.
The software's Baby Insights page is fantastic. Whenever someone feeds your baby, puts your child down for a nap, or gives them medicine, they can put that information into the online software. You can then access that from work to see if your children are getting what they need. Parents can also run reports to see how much their babies are sleeping, how much they've been eating, and more. Those reports give you a full printout of exactly what's been going on in your child's life. Babble Soft is an outstanding tool. It's just too bad it costs $37.95 for 12 months after a free trial.
BabyCenter BabyCenter provides you with help as your children grow from a newborn to a "Big Kid." When you sign up for the site, you'll find a variety of articles providing guidance on raising your children at different stages in their lives. Most of the articles are worth reading and offer some great insight.
But the real value of BabyCenter is the community. The BabyCenter Community allows you to chat with other parents who are going through the same experience of raising their children. You can get support for issues, give advice to other parents, or simply post questions you're curious about. Since the site has a social element, you can also make friends with other parents and discuss things with them privately. It's a great service.
Care Care is basically a search engine that helps you find babysitters, nannies, tutors, pet caretakers, or housekeepers in your area. The people providing that service list their expertise. In their listing, the service providers give information about themselves, how they can be contacted, and after registering for the site, you can also get in touch with their references.… Read more