I'm skeptical about many of the "worst virus ever!!!" warnings that storm across Internet-land from time to time. But the latest advisory, about a potentially very serious vulnerability in the Java plugin for all major browsers, has gotten my attention. Mac users: keep on reading. This applies to you too.
• In Firefox, select "Tools" from the main menu, then "Add-ons," then click the "Disable" button next to any Java plug-ins.• In Safari, click "Safari" in the main menu bar, then "Preferences," then select the "Security" tab and uncheck the button next to "Enable Java."• In Chrome, type or copy "Chrome://Plugins" into your browser's address bar, then click the "Disable" button below any Java plug-ins.• In Internet Explorer, follow these instructions for disabling Java in all browsers via the Control Panel. There is no way to completely disable Java specifically in IE.
Oh, yes, get a flu shot too.
* When you've finished that, for trip-down-memory land purposes you can read a tech column I wrote back in 1996. In it I was introduced to a new concept, called "Java," by the person who was then the chief technology officer for Sun Microsystems. A lot has changed.
** What's that picture? It's a wonderful gamelan orchestra in Yogyakarta, cultural capital of the "other" Java. It's here because it looks more interesting than the computer-Java logo. I'd send a link to an article I once wrote about Yogyakarta and its music but it doesn't seem to be online. Another time.