Scary smartphone stats, user-friendly home tech, Google search tips

Tech Talk #86 – Sep. 15, 2018 Scary smartphone stats Addiction. There, I said it. People, Americans in this case, are addicted to their smartphones. Not you and me, though; we’re fine. Other people, probably someone we know, is addicted.   How smartphone-addicted are Americans? People use their phones for an average of 3 hours and 8 minutes a day and check their phone 110 times a day 50% are uncomfortable when they leave their

Should you choose Apple or Android for a new phone?

Tech Talk #85 – Sep. 1, 2018   Should you choose Apple or Android for a new phone?   Smartphones running Android by Google, or iOS by Apple, have borrowed (or stolen, see Apple Inc. v Samsung) so many features and design elements from each other that most phones look basically the same. So if you’re buying your first phone, which should you choose? If you’ve already got a smartphone, you’ve already chosen either Android

Analogies

Tech Talk #84 – Aug 18, 2018   Analogies   Technical stuff can be complicated, so I use analogies to help explain technical stuff in ways non-technical people can understand.   CPUs, hard drive space and RAM, browsers and home pages   CPUs   CPU stands for Central Processing Unit, your CPU is the “engine” in your device (computer, smartphone or tablet) that does work.   CPUs are also called processors, because hey, let’s make

Email fun facts and securing your router

Tech Talk #83 – Aug 4, 2018 Email fun facts Email, as we know it, was invented by Ray Tomlinson in 1972 while working as a government contractor on the U. S. Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET.) He used the @ symbol to separate the name of the recipient from the computer holding the recipient’s emails.   OK, here are some email facts: Today, there are 3.7 billion email accounts, worldwide. 269

Fake tech support, cleaning Alexa, and nerd news

Tech Talk #82 – July 21, 2018   Fake tech support scams are on the rise   There are more crooks than ever running fake tech support scams. First it was phone calls, then poisoned pop-ups and hijacked advertising networks, and now social media. When (if) people start to catch on to the scammer’s schemes, they’ll go back to making random phone calls and start the cycle over again. All to try and scare people

New phone settings and fixing slow browsers

Tech Talk #81 – July 7, 2018 New phone settings and fixing slow browsers Hey, congratulations; you've got a new phone. You (or the helpful people at the store) activated your new phone and you’re all logged in and ready to go.   Before you go out and use your phone to shoot a video of your nephew jumping onto a trampoline from the roof, let’s talk about settings. All Android and Apple phones contain

Watch out for mshelper

Tech Talk #80 – June 23, 2018 Watch out for mshelper   In spite of the ‘ms’ in the name, ‘mshelper’ is malware that runs on a Mac. ‘mshelper’ is designed to hog all the resources (processor time, memory, and hard disk) on a Mac. This can cause your Mac to run hotter and louder and will definitely put a dent in your battery life. No one is completely sure what ‘mshelper’ is doing with

Routers, Russians, and the FBI

Tech Talk #79 – June 9, 2018 Routers, Russians, and the FBI I cringe whenever complicated technical information makes it to USA TODAY and other mainstream media outlets. Not that there’s anything wrong with USA TODAY or the other guys, they’re not just equipped to handle the technical stuff. Kardashians? Sure. Router firmware infections? Mostly not. So I’m here to answer your questions.   Q: What’s going on? Back in April, security companies in the

Setting up Windows 10

Tech Talk #78 – May 26, 2018   Setting up Windows 10   Whether you have a shiny new computer or you've recently upgraded to the April 2018 Update (version 1803), Windows 10 (Win10) is designed to run on desktop computers, laptops, tablets, and phones. If you’re running it on a desktop or a laptop, here’s how you can setup Win10 to make sense on your hardware.     Clean up your start menu  

Startin’ on the Dock of the bay

Tech Talk #77 – May 12, 2018 Startin’ on the Dock of the bay   To use your computer, you need to use either the Dock (macOS) or Start (Windows.) The Dock and Start are how you interact with your operating system and your applications. By default, they both work pretty well, but there’s always room for improvement, right?   Windows   We’ve had a Start menu in every version of Windows since Windows 95,