Stopping spam calls

Tech Talk #90 – Nov. 10, 2018 Blocking and reporting spam calls Are you getting tired of getting spam and scam calls on your cell phone? You know; those calls about elections, solar panels, IRS problems, dubious charity donations, energy retrofits, health insurance, and all the rest.   Current cell phone technology offers ways to block these calls. Of course, the spammers know this and have adapted. Almost all scammers and robocallers use “number spoofing”

“Ghosting” Facebook, techopolies

 Tech Talk #89 – Oct. 27, 2018 “Ghosting” Facebook Breaking off a relationship suddenly without telling the other person and then ignoring all communications from that person is called “ghosting.”   If you can’t quite delete your Facebook account yet (maybe because you’d miss out on photos from traveling friends or kids and grandkids) you can try ghosting Facebook instead.   But why would you want to ghost Facebook?   Reason #1 Facebook would like

Browsers and banking, autofill typos, casting to your TV

Tech Talk #88 – Oct. 13, 2018 Browsers and banking If your computer can’t connect to your bank or financial institution anymore, you need to switch your browser.   Old Windows and Mac computers become “unsupported,” meaning they no longer receive security and bug fixes from Microsoft or Apple. The default browsers (Internet Explorer or Safari) on these computers are also no longer supported. As security on the internet evolves, these old versions of IE

Chromebooks, dual-band routers, undo, and more

Tech Talk #87 – Sep. 29, 2018 Chromebooks, dual-band routers, undo, and more   What’s a Chromebook? A Chromebook is an inexpensive laptop, designed to be used while connected to the internet. Most of your applications and all of your files are stored online.   Why are they inexpensive? Chromebooks don’t run on a Windows or Mac operating system, so they don’t have to pay the Microsoft or Apple “tax.” Chromebooks run Chrome OS, Google’s

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