Liquids and laptops

Tech Talk #140 – Oct 10, 2020 Whether it's water, soda, wine, or coffee, liquids and laptops don't mix. At least, not successfully. If you spill some liquid on your laptop, the first thing to do is turn it off by holding down the power button for at least 10 seconds and unplugging it from the wall. If you can remove the battery from your laptop, do that. Now, open the computer and put it

Smishing?

Tech Talk #139 – Sep 26, 2020 Remember when we were young and innocent, and the only thing we had to be on our guard about was phishing emails? You know, the emails from scammers trying to get your login credentials, social security number, credit card info, or some other personal information? Did you ever wonder why it’s called phishing or spelled that way? Way back in the 90s (that’s the 1990s, not the 1890s),

How to remove your data from your smart home speakers

Tech Talk #138 – Sep 12, 2020 For years, it's seemed that when we went bought the latest, fastest computer or phone, as soon as we got it all set up and working, there was suddenly something newer and faster than what we just bought. It happens with smart speakers, too. When you get a new computer or phone, you need to remove all your personal information from your computer or phone before you sell,

What the heck is Microsoft Edge?

Tech Talk #137 – August 29, 2020 Remember Internet Explorer? There were eleven versions of Internet Explorer from 1995 to 2013. Since it was the default internet browser in the most popular computer operating system, Internet Explorer was the most used browser in the world for many years. Eventually, Internet Explorer had competition, first from Mozilla's Firefox browser and then from Google's Chrome browser. Both Firefox and Chrome supported new web standards that Internet Explorer

Affordable computers

Tech Talk #136 – August 15, 2020 Do you need (or want) a new Windows computer but don’t want to spend a bunch of money? If you mostly use your computer to check email, do some shopping, and stream videos, you don’t need a whiz-bang computer that’s capable of landing a man on the moon. Mainstream computer manufacturers like Dell, HP, ASUS, Acer, and the rest all make Windows computers for under $500. But what

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