Protect Your Computer from Cats that Prance on Keyboards

BY STANLEY ZAROWIN

Q. I know this sounds like a silly question, but it’s a real issue for me and I need an answer. I work mostly from my home and I have two cats. Whenever I get up from the computer they just love to stroll over the keys, and you can guess the chaos that causes. Short of placing a cover over the keyboard, is there some way to protect my files?

A. You’re not alone, and you may be surprised to learn that there is a nifty software program that addresses the problem. It’s called PawSense. It works like this: When a cat walks on the keyboard, the paws produce fairly predictable keystroke patterns, which the software immediately detects, automatically blocking further keyboard action. It also produces a harmonica sound that’s supposed to be unpleasant to cats, thereby training the cat to keep off. Typing the password “human” unlocks the keyboard. Check it out at www.pawsense.com .

The other thing you can do is set up a screen saver that is evoked and subsequently freed with a password, but, of course, you will have to remember to set the screen saver whenever you leave the keyboard.

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