Nigel Whitfield

Freelance journalist & editor

Nigel Whitfield, September 2006
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This is the list of all links current available, alphabetically by title.

A to Z of web hosting

(Computer Active) Part of Computer Active's hosting microsite, this article gives an overview of what you should look for when you're choosing web hosting. It explains the sort of options available, how much you can expect to pay, and why you might want to buy hosting rather than use the free options that come with your internet account. Read article

Actinic Express

(Personal Computer World) In January 2006 I reviewed this online shopping system, designed as a simple way for businesses to sell online, without investing up-front in Actinic's Catalog software package. Read article

An introduction to Freesat

(Personal Computer World) This feature explains the new Freesat service from the BBC & ITV, and what it means in practical terms for those who want to receive TV on their PC, as well as a look at some of the technical aspects of the new system. Read article

Apple Mac OS X 10.4

(Personal Computer World) Although the bulk of what I write about is based on PCs and Windows, I'm a regular Mac user, and also review products for that platform. Read article

Asterisk and the Nokia N95

(Personal Computer World) Nokia's N95 is a great phone - and with a little work, you can make it even better. In this piece, I explain how to load generic firmware and also how to make it work with a basic Asterisk configuration, so you can use it as an extension of your home phone system Read article

Back to information

(Personal Computer World) Although it dates back to December 1998, this was a fairly thoughtful column that I penned for Personal Computer World. This link takes you to someone else's site; they obviously felt it worth reproducing, and I'm glad to see that after several years, it's still relevant. Read article

Bluetooth hits your desktop

(Microsoft At Home) A technology-led piece, this explains what Bluetooth is, and the benefits that it can bring to the user when it's added to their desktop PC. Read article

Broadband in the UK: spoilt for choice

(Computer Active) With a range of options for broadband available to most users in the UK, whether wireless, cable TV or ADSL, this article gives and overview of what was available in the autumn of 2005. Read article

Broadband telephony: talk is cheap

(Computer Active) From Spring 2005, this article explains what broadband telephony is, and how users can take advantage of it. Read article

BT Broadband Talk Voyager 2500V

(Computer Active) This review of a BT VoIP capable ADSL router was published in May 2006. Read article

Evesham iPlayer HD

(The Register) Evesham's iPlayer HD provides upscaling of Freeview, an 80Gb hard drive to record to, network media playback, and it'll even be compatible with broadcast High Definition through your aerial. Is that enough to make it the best Freeview box around? Read article

Experience the Microsoft Home of the future

(Microsoft At Home) In 2005, Microsoft kitted out a home in London's Holland Park with all their latest technology; this article explains some of what's possible in the connected M-Home. Read article

Fighting spam with SPF and greylists

(Personal Computer World) This feature looks at some of the latest techniques for fighting spam, and explores how you can use SPF and greylisting to reduce the amount of junk in your inbox. Read article

Freeview HD Q and A

(The Register) Freeview HD is coming, but there's plenty of confusion and misinformation being bandied about. This piece for Register Hardware (and additional responses in the comments) sets out to clarify the situation. Read article

Going green with your PC

(Personal Computer World) From November 2006, this article looks at hints and tips for greener use of your PC, including power saving and recycling. Read article

Group test: Hassle free sat-nav

(Personal Computer World) From the spring of 2006, this is group test, looking at a range of GPS satellite navigation systems - one of a few such tests I've done for PCW recently. Several different products are featured, together with background information on topics such as Galileo and the alternatives to a one-box GPS unit. Read article

Hacking the Sony Reader

(The Register) This Hands On piece gives an introduction to some of the customisation possibilities of the Sony Reader eBook. Read article

Hassle-free uploading to your web site

(Personal Computer World) This article, from Hands On, explains some of the basics about uploading information to your site - a simple task, but one that often confuses newcomers. Read article

Helios X5000 media player

(Personal Computer World) A review of a High Definition media player, aimed at the audiophile market. Read article

High-tech home security

(Personal Computer World) From late 2003, this article explains some of the ways in which PC technology can be used to help keep your home secure; a companion article just over a year later looked at some of the latest products available. Read article

Home media networks

(Personal Computer World) It's easier than you think to set up a network that will let you access all your media everywhere, with live and recorded TV, music and downloads playable in every room. In this article, we explain what you can do, how to do it, and what you need to do to make sure you can enjoy your media without glitches Read article

Improve your internet security

(Microsoft At Home) Aimed at increasing awareness of security issues in general and Windows XP Service Pack 2 in particular, this piece is intended to help reassure and protect users when they go online. Read article

Internet phone handsets

(Computer Active) Internet telephony doesn't have to mean you're tied to the computer. In this feature, I look at some of the options that make using VoIP just as simple as picking up your ordinary household phone. Read article

Internet Television

(Personal Computer World) Will we all be watching TV via the internet in future, unplugging our satellite dishes and Freeview aerials? In this article, I look at the state of the technology. Read article

Is free broadband really free?

(Personal Computer World) From the October 2006 issue of PCW (on sale in August), this article looks at the current state of UK broadband, and explains what you really receive when you sign up for a 'free' service. Read article

Lavasoft AdAware SE Plus

(Personal Computer World) In October 2005, I did a group test of anti-spyware products for PCW; this is one of the products reviewed. Read article

Lights! Camera! Mouse!

(The Times) From February 2004 - timed to coincide with the Oscars - this short article explains how easy it can be to make digital movies using a Macintosh. Read article

Magellan Crossover GPS

(Personal Computer World) This 300 GPS unit is designed for use off the road as well as on, with tools for navigating cross country or on water. Read article

Manage your contacts

(Microsoft At Home) Fed up of having contacts split across your PC, organiser and mobile phone? This how-to explains one way of solving the problem. Read article

Matias Tactile Pro keyboard

(Personal Computer World) A short review of a Mac and PC compatible keyboard. Read article

Microsoft student and teacher editions

(Microsoft At Home) Aimed at explaining how to purchase MS software, this piece explains who is eligible for the student and teacher discounts. Read article

Mobile broadband

(Personal Computer World) It's cheaper than it used to be to get broadband speeds via your mobile phones. In this piece I explore the options available (autumn 2007) and how much you'll have to pay per month. Read article

My Dutch WiFi Hell

(Personal Computer World) Is hotel WiFi worth bothering with? It can potentially save you a fortune on roaming charges, if you have the right sort of phone, but will it drive you to distraction at the same time? Read article

Navicore Personal 2007

(Personal Computer World) The latest update to Navicore's GPS software for Symbian smartphones. Read article

On test: Online banking services

(Computer Active) With more and more users banking online, just what is on offer, and how easy are the sites to use? This article interviews users, and looks at the pros and cons of the offerings from different banks. Read article

OnShare review

(Personal Computer World) Short review of the latest beta file sharing software, from the company that brought you OnSpeed. Read article

Our PCs, our planet

(Personal Computer World) Published August 2006 in the October issue of the magazine, this article explains what hazardous substances are used in making PCs, and what recent legislation means with regard to recycling and disposing of your computer. Read article

Panasonic TX-L37V10

(The Register) A review of Panasonic's Freesat TV with built in DLNA playback and IPTV service Read article

Put a PC in your car

(Personal Computer World) A feature looking at in-car PCs - what will it cost you to make one, what it can do for you, and some practical tips on how to do it. Read article

PVR Tips and tricks revealed

(Personal Computer World) Focussing on Personal Video Recorders for Freeview, this article explains the options available for some of the popular models in the UK, looking at ways of modifying the PVRs and extracting recorded video to manipulate on your PC. Published March 2006. Read article

Roll your own CMS

(Personal Computer World) This Hands On Web Development column, from October 2006, explains some of the things you need to think about when building your own CMS, and was based on the experiences of putting together this site. Read article

Sat Nav secrets

(Personal Computer World) Find out how to create your own POIs, or link a GPS up with Google Maps, in this feature I wrote for PCW. Read article

Secrets of the street

(Computer Active) This article, from early 2004, explains how you can find out about the area you live in, or that you're thinking of moving to, using some of the resources on the web - including some unlikely ways of getting extra information. Read article

Setting up your own hotspot

(Personal Computer World) The heading on this article is slightly inaccurate; it's principally a look at the service, which aims to set up a free WiFi network, subsidising routers and providing access to those who share their own connections. Read article

Siemens S450IP phone

(Personal Computer World) A DECT phone with a difference - this one packs standards-based SIP VoIP, Jabber, POP3 email checking and more into a reasonably priced handset. Read article

Spam busters on test

(Computer Active) With spam an ever increasing problem, this article put several filtering packages to the test, running them all against identical sets of mail, and looking the number of false positives as well as plain spam-killing power. Read article

Streaming media - live sound and vision

(Personal Computer World) Although technology has moved on - this article was written in 2000 - I've included this here as an example of another of my areas of interest. Read article

Superfast UK Broadband

(Personal Computer World) A look at the options for high speed broadband in the UK - and why we could be stuck in the slow lane, behind other countries. Read article

The Humax HDR and Unicable

(Personal Computer World) In this PCW blog post, I explore the Unicable functionality of the new Humax Freesat PVR Read article

The ultimate home network

(Personal Computer World) This feature explores the many possibilities of a home network, including multimedia, remote control, and issues you need to consider, such as cabling, and network technologies. The link takes you to the main feature, and there are additional links on the last page of it to box outs covering cabling, IMAP and home automation. Read article

Topfield TF5800PVR

(Computer Active) This was one of the first reviews of the Topfield TF5800PVR - a machine that I liked so much, I set up a web site dedicated to it! Read article

UltraWideBand is coming

(Personal Computer World) UltraWideBand (UWB) is a technology that underpins new gadgets such as Certified Wireless USB. In this article I explain the technical background and what sort of uses the technology will be put to. Read article

Using PHP scripts on your site

(Personal Computer World) Another Hands On article, this looks at how you can code PHP scripts to generate files on your site and send them to users as downloads, with some useful tricks to ensure everything works, no matter what tool users are using. Read article

What is broadband?

(Daosiri LLP) Written to a PR brief, this article grew out of a re-write of a previous article, and gives a simple overview of broadband, comparing different technologies, for the eZine section of the Sandoval broadband web site. Read article

Xara X1

(Personal Computer World) A review of the latest version of Xara's graphic package - it's ideal for people who need to create graphics for the web. Read article


This database of links was updated in January 2007.