Phishing, and why Chrome?

Tech Talk #213–Sep 16, 2023 Phishing Despite what we see on TV and in the movies, computer hacking doesn't involve crouching over a laptop on the floor of a dark server room. Or sitting at a desk with multiple monitors with lines of code running on the screens. Followed by someone saying, "I'm in." Does it happen? Probably, but not very often. The most common way to go where you aren't allowed, computer security-wise, is

Frustrated with your Wi-Fi?

Tech Talk #212–Sep 2, 2023 Like most people, you probably use Wi-Fi for internet connectivity in your house. Wi-Fi connects your phones, tablets, and laptops to the internet. And also, your TVs, streaming devices, security systems, kitchen gadgets, and household appliances. With all that going on, ensuring your Wi-Fi delivers everything it can is a good idea. Let's jump in. Network speed Think of your Wi-Fi router as a sprinkler and your internet connection as

Do you NEED Gigabit internet service?

Tech Talk #211–Aug 19, 2023 You can get a gigabit internet service package from Spectrum or Race to provide internet service at home or work. But do you need internet service that fast? We measure Internet speeds in Mbps (megabits per second). 1 Mbps can transfer one million bits of data in a second, but that’s not fast these days. So, a gigabit internet connection can deliver up to 1,000 megabits of data per second.

Do you Roku?

Tech Talk #210–Aug 5, 2023 You probably know what a Roku is. A streaming device that lets you use Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, and more, even if you don't have a smart TV. And Roku often does a better job of streaming than a smart TV. Why Roku? Because roku is number six in Japan, this was the sixth company Roku founder Anthony Wood started. Anyway, right out of the box, Roku devices are

What do Sleep, Shut down, and Restart do?

Tech Talk #209–July 22, 2023 What happens when you put your computer to sleep? What’s the difference between restarting your computer, shutting it down, and turning it back on? Sleep When you put your computer to sleep, it goes into low-power mode. In this mode, the display turns off, your computer saves its current state (open files or browser tabs, etc.) to memory, and it stops sending power to most hardware. As long as your

iOS and battery optimization, Cellphone robocalls

Tech Talk #208–July 8, 2023 iOS and battery optimization The first generation of cell phone batteries were Nickel-Cadmium (NiCad) batteries. NiCad batteries were toxic (the Cadmium part,) heavy, had overheating issues, and developed a memory effect from charging cycles. This memory effect was the source of the old advice to drain your phone down to 0% battery before charging it again. Along came Nickel-Metal Hydride (NiMH) batteries. NiMH batteries got rid of the toxic cadmium,

Car fires-EVs vs. ICE cars

Tech Talk #207–June 24, 2023 First off, let's talk about all those initials in the headline. EV stands for an electric vehicle. And ICE stands for internal combustion engine, at least in this case. An EV has no gasoline engine and gets its power from a large battery needing external power. Technically, that leaves out all the hybrid vehicles with a battery and a gas engine, but I'll lump hybrids and EVs together for this

Bad autofill, initialisms

Tech Talk #206–June 10, 2023 Bad autofill Clearing bad autofill entries If you’ve ever mistyped an address in your browser’s search box, like “amazpn” or “hitchingpsttheares,” your browser will remember it. And you’ll see it again, even when you type in the correct address. This helpfulness is called autofill. You can remove the wrong entries in your autofill by deleting your entire browser history. Then, boom, they’re gone. But now you’ll have to re-authenticate on

Previewing email, flooring your computer, sharing Netflix

Tech Talk #205–May 27, 2023 Previewing your email If you’ve been using email for a while, you probably remember hearing about how dangerous it was to preview your email. Maybe even being told to turn off the preview pane entirely. Today though, previewing your email before you open it is completely safe and encouraged. So, what changed? A couple of things. All the major email client developers, Microsoft, Pegasus (remember them?), Eudora (remember them, too?),

Locked out?

Tech Talk #204–May 13, 2023We all use devices (smartphones, tablets, or computers) that contain information we don’t want strangers or thieves to access. We lock our devices with a username/password combination to protect our privacy. Since we’ll be unlocking our device 5, 10, 15, and 20 times a day, we use our fingerprints, faces, passcode or PIN, or a lock screen pattern to unlock our device instead of our username/password. This security is excellent, but