Fortunately, There are Some Things We Can Do
You could buy a Mac or install and use a lesser targeted operating system, sure... This will work great, but is unrealistic for your average home user who is happy with XP.
May I recommend Adblock?
It's a free extension to Mozilla Firefox's web-browser, that I can't believe I survived without. This will cause you to download almost no spyware, eliminate most banner ads on websites and browse the web faster accessing the information you were interested in reading about in the first place. You are only a few easy steps away.
- If you haven't already, download and install the Firefox browser here.
- Using your new browser, go to the extensions page and install Adblock at https://addons.mozilla.org/extensions/moreinfo.php?id=10
- Close Firefox and reopen it.
- Click: Tools -> Adblock -> Preferences
- Now you may edit your blockable elements. By default, Adblock blocks nothing.
You can use the sample settings provided by mozdev (the Adblock developers) to get you started here. Keep in mind, that this is a very *basic* list to get you started and is a little out of date. You will want to add to this over time.
You're done! You've installed Adblock and configured your Filter List. Happy browsing with Firefox...