Monday, July 21, 2014

The Weekly Chatter for July 21, 2014

When Tragedy Strikes

Crazy. That is the first word that often comes to mind in conversations with people about the world in which we live today. The world just seems crazy, crazier than it used to be anyway. The question is, however, is the world actually crazy, or has our perception of the world somehow changed to elicit this illusion? News and information is more accessible than ever. Certainly the propagation of that news and information is faster today than at any point in human history. 40% of the world's 7 billion people are connected to the Internet, so more people have access to this flow of information than ever before. But does the volume of information, the speed of its distribution, and our access to it, somehow account for the craziness we sometimes feel? Or is it more about our inability, or lack of desire, to control the volume of information we personally receive into more tangible or more relevant snippets that lends this impression? The latter would certainly create a chaotic thought environment that could explain that crazy feeling. How do you filter your flow of information into reasonable, actionable increments?

There is a difference between crazy and unintelligible. Our thoughts today continue to be with the victims of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, and their families. Our thoughts are also with the Gazans and Israelis whose lives are touched by the recent surge in violence there. Our thoughts are with all people whose lives are inhibited by violence against them, the locations of which are simply too numerous to mention. If information is flowing your way unfiltered, than you know these places already. If you don't know them, then you should make an effort to get to know them. With this knowledge lies comprehension, and our comprehension can ultimately derive solutions. Without this understanding, an overwhelming sense of "anything can happen at any time" can gain a foothold, where true chaos in a world spinning dangerously out of control prevails. The world appears harmless from altitude, devoid of border lines and threats from below. Did anyone on Flight 17 even for a moment think that a missile would bring down their flight while it was benignly cruising at 33,000 feet? Did travelers that were passing the time simply gazing out of the windows even know where they were? It is difficult to fathom that random acts of violence can find us anytime, anywhere.

Much in the same way as the Internet provides us with access to an abundant river of information, it provides us also with a multitude of forums through which to interact with each other to discuss, dialogue and debate the information we receive. In times of tragedy, it is human nature to want to understand why the incomprehensible occurs, and to seek the support of others as part of that process. Perhaps it is no more than herd mentality to spread our pain and grief across a group as we try to cope with a world that has become mystifying and unfathomable. As we gather together as world citizens in message boards, blogs, and chat rooms, the opportunity exists to become part of the solution. As we participate in the real-time conversations in our own ParaChat community of live chat rooms, which has 1 million unique monthly visitors from over 200 different countries, a discussion of the challenges that are facing our world dominate the dialogue. With users from every corner of the planet joining in the conversations, there is a full range of opinions from all sides of every issue. If you have something to say, join in the discussion happening now in our ParaChat community, or use a free or paid ParaChat service on your own site to start your own conversation. The world is all of us combined. When we connect with each other, we get to control just how crazy it is.

Show Us What You've Got With Screen Shots

ParaChat offers free support to both customers and users alike. Support is provided via an advanced ticketing system which allows our Support Team to minimize response times, maximize efficiency, and prioritize inquiries. When you create a support account, you may create, view and update your support tickets, a complete history of which is retained for future reference. If you are a ParaChat customer, simply log into your existing ParaChat account to open a support ticket. If you are ParaChat user, please register a support ticket account so your inquiry can receive the fastest response possible.

If you contact the ParaChat Support team, they may request that you provide a screen shot that demonstrates the issue you are having. A screen shot allows you to create a picture of what is on your monitor. If you are experiencing an issue with ParaChat, taking a picture of the issue is most likely faster than typing a full description. This helps our Support Team to understand the issue sooner, which in turn, allows them to help you faster. For detailed information about how to take a screen shot on your computer, please visit the How to take a screen shot in Windows or How to take a screen shot in Mac OS X articles in our Knowledgebase.

Security Alert: Java Update From Oracle

This past week, Oracle's Critical Patch Update included a security update to Java. The update to Java 7 Update 65 and Java 8 Update 11 included 20 security fixes. As with past Java updates, we highly recommend that users keep their Java versions up to date. This includes not only updating your computer's Java version to the latest version of Java available, but also removing any old versions of Java that you may have installed on your computer. For information about updating Java, and removing old version, please visit the How can I be certain my Java version is current? article in our Knowledgebase. Java is a web browser plug-in that is required to load the ParaChat Java chat client. Some web browsers and platforms will block Java applets from loading if you do not have the latest Java version installed.

Keep the chat love alive, and we'll see you again next week!

The ParaChat Team

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