Password terror and a better way

Tech Talk #135 – August 1, 2020 The first half an hour passed quickly. Oh, what fun we had. The job of removing the old computer gave way to the excitement of opening boxes and setting up the new machine. Turning the computer on for the first time, marveling at how fast it boots up. Seeing how much smaller it is than the old computer and how fast! How quiet it is! And just look

The flavors of Microsoft Office

Tech Talk #134 – July 18, 2020 Retail - purchase A boxed copy of Office Home and Student 2019 retails for $150 and includes Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. If you need Outlook or Publisher, pick up a copy of Office Professional for $439. Either way, you get a boxed copy of your version of Office for installation on one computer, with a DVD install disc and everything, just like old times. What you won't get

Windows vs. Mac

Tech Talk #133 – July 4, 2020 Whether you’re getting treating yourself to a new computer (yay for you!) or your old computer is old and slow (are you getting calls from the Smithsonian about donating to the museum?), you have a decision to make. Windows or Mac Operating System (OS). For most people, it’s not a tough choice; stick with what you have and know. But maybe, just maybe, you’re looking over the fence

Passwords, office sounds, Kmart music

Tech Talk #132 – June 20, 2020 Passwords and security questions In the old days (a couple of years ago), if you forgot your password for your email or social media account, you could prove you were you by answering some security questions. Then you could reset your password. But there were problems with that method; 1) many people didn’t remember the answers to their security questions (who was my second-grade teacher?), and 2) some

COVID-19 and your gadgets

Tech Talk #131 – June 6, 2020 COVID-19 and your gadgets How long can the COVID-19 virus live on surfaces? Studies are complete on how the virus survives on surfaces ranging from cardboard to granite, and so far, each study has reached differing conclusions. But the current best guess is 72 to 96 hours on nonporous surfaces like glass, plastic, and aluminum. You know, the stuff all our gadgets are made from. The CDC reports

Home internet tune-up, Netflix with friends

Tech Talk #130 – May 23, 2020 Home internet tune-up We're all spending more time at home these days, and for many people, that means spending more time online. Whether on Zoom conference calls, Google Classroom assignments, trying to level up in your video game, or some quality binge-watching, we're online more now than we were last year. Here’s how to make sure you’re getting the most from your internet connection. Go get your latest

5G does not cause COVID-19, Working from home best practices

Tech Talk #129 – May 9, 2020 5G does not cause COVID-19 If you spend any time online or get your news via social media, you have probably run across conspiracy theories about 5G cell towers causing COVID-19. Not true, bucko. 5G technology uses electromagnetic waves, while  COVID-19 is a biological virus. Whole different things. When most people talk about 5G, they are referring to the current fifth-generation mobile broadband technology that companies are rolling

Breaking the internet, easy video conferencing apps

Tech Talk #128 – April 25, 2020 Breaking the internet With more than 100 million people globally working from home, school closures forcing online classes, and just generally staying home instead of meeting face-to-face, internet traffic over broadband and mobile wireless is at an all-time high. Are we close to breaking the internet? The strong point of the world’s internet capability is in the main connections - the undersea cables, and the continent-spanning fiber optic

Back up your computer while you’re self-quarantining. I bet you need something to watch.

Tech Talk #127 – April 11, 2020 Back up your computer while you're self-quarantining. Are you stuck at home? Now is the perfect time to revisit your data back-up strategy or, you know, to create a data back-up strategy in the first place. One back-up is better than nothing, but to keep your data safe, follow a 3-2-1 back-up plan. The old school style 3-2-1 back-up meant you'd keep three copies of your data in

Self-quarantines and the internet, music for productivity

Tech Talk #126 – March 28, 2020 Self-quarantines and the internet So, through no fault of your own, ahem, COVID-19, you’re stuck at home. Now what? In the best-case scenario, the business you work for converted your office to Work From Home (WFH.) The worst-case is the company had to shut down entirely, and no one is working. Either way, you’ll rely on the internet to WFH, to entertain yourself and your family, or both.