Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Reevaluations (aka Friday Fun)

I only have time for posting a very quick post today.

First up, a “image” to ponder…

Click on image to see more by this artist

“The old tree fort” by EgnaroorangE, courtesy of Flickr Commons.

And then I will tell you why I posted that as today’s “Friday Fun”. I want to do a quick.. let’s call it a “reader survey”. (Please click all that apply.)

Okay.

So.

TGIF. And thanks for playing!

update: I found a bit more time, so.. how about some tech?

* Windows 8 in the Enterprise: Why IT pros say no

Gina Smith surveyed enterprise tech pros about their intentions regarding Windows 8. The reaction was less than enthusiastic.” Read more..

* Flashback infects 10% of Macs, Android malware up 300%

A new Q2 2012 report finds that the Flashback Trojan infected 10 percent of home networks with Mac computers during the month of April while Android malware numbers quadrupled during the quarter.” Read more..

Today’s quote:Don’t follow a trend. Follow your heart.” ~ Krist Novoselic

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 20, 2012 Posted by | advice | Leave a comment

Inspiration

Wow. 2012 is more than half over. Each passing year, I feel more like time is compressing on me, and the days and weeks seem so much briefer than they used to. I sneeze, and it’s time for Christmas shopping again..

So I am going to try to slow things down a wee bit.

Summer Fun

I found this image on Julie Cantrell’s website Julie’s Journal. She is a bestselling author of childrens books, and I hope parents will visit her website.. as a way to make up for me “borrowing” this image.


More Inspiration

Many of you have seen this “viral video” from a few years ago (multiple millions did). The video is a short 1 hour and 15 minutes long. It is Randy Pausch giving a “last lecture” at Carnegie Mellon.

He was a Computer Science professor and a pioneer in the field of virtual reality, but that’s not why Tech-for Everyone readers might appreciate it. This “lecture” has been seen by over a million people and is rated 5 Stars by viewers; and was turned into a book (which enjoyed more than 85 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list, and there are now more than 4.5 million copies in print in the U.S. alone).

Watching it might change your life.

Mr. Pausch was the founder of the Alice project; a free program that teaches kids how to program a computer, and they don’t even know they’re learning programming.. they think they’re writing a story.
Amazing.
You can check it out at http://www.alice.org/

Today’s reco: Use Google Chrome’s Task Manager To Get Details About Specific Running Processes

The browser I primarily use is Google Chrome. A feature in Chrome, that is little used and can be quite handy, is the built-in task manager. The Chrome Task Manager can provide you with details about the specific processes that are running (plus CPU, Network bandwidth being consumed, and a multitude of other options). The […]” Read more..

Today’s quote:Don’t let the fear of striking out hold you back.” ~ Babe Ruth

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 19, 2012 Posted by | advice, computers, tech | , , | Leave a comment

17 Tips For Windows 7 (and some fun)

Windows 7 has many features that can speed up your work. Some are obvious, but others are more like ‘hidden jewels’. Tony Bradley’s article over on ComputerWorld is a great place for you to find out about 7 of these new efficiency-boosters and learn good advice for best using them.

Here is the direct link: Windows 7 efficiency tips Master these features to boost your productivity in Windows 7.

And, 10 ways to speed up Windows 7

With Windows 7, Microsoft did a really good job making the system perform well. However, over time, Windows 7 systems can slow down and need some care and feeding to regain their former glory. Further, some Windows 7 features can be leveraged to improve overall system performance. In this article, I will outline 10 steps you can take to boost the performance of your Windows 7 systems.Read more..

Related: And for those of you who aren’t interested in these – because you are still using Windows XP – see, It is time to face facts and finally dump Windows XP

I have been saying this for a while now; but, sometimes people want to know what other professionals are saying..

Unrelated: (But hopefully fun):

* I have been meaning to mention this for some time now, but I have been hearing from many, many places that it has been hot and humid and insufferable. Quite different from here, where we have had days that did not break 70° and I thought I was going to get jobbed out of summer…

* Tech skills: The problem’s not the staff, it’s the bozos in charge

Evidence is mounting that technologically illiterate managers are causing more damage to corporate productivity than a shortage of IT skills among staff.Read more..

(“Evidence is mounting“??? I call that “stating the obvious”.. [I guess the author never heard of Dilbert?])

* The 12 O’clock Flasher (aka “Funny tech support”) (To me, this isn’t funny.. it’s far too accurate.)

Today’s free download: IObit Toolbox is a free, portable software that system administrators and computer geeks will take along to solve PC problems anytime and anywhere. With more than 20 dedicated tools, IObit Toolbox allows you to display/diagnose PC information, enhance PC security, optimize PC performance and repairing PC problems. In a word, it offers an easy way for PC admins to monitor and manage computers.

Today’s quote:The only exercise some people get is jumping to conclusions, running down their friends, side-stepping responsibility, and pushing their luck!”  ~ Unknown

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 18, 2012 Posted by | advice, computers, how to, Microsoft, PC, performance, software, tech, tweaks | , | Leave a comment

The First Steps Of Any Tech Troubleshooting

My loyal readers should know the Troubleshooting Basics (the first things you do) for when your device, gadget, computer, program, or doodad is misbehaving.

The first thing you check is: Is it plugged in? Turned on/getting power?

Never assume that just because you didn’t disconnect the printer (aka “pull the cord out”) that the cord/cable is connected. Eyeball your connections to confirm. Why spend hours installing device drivers, or reconfiguring your network,  only to discover that the cat (or vacuum cleaner) has loosened a cord?

(Cordless mice and keyboards need batteries.. when was the last time you changed yours?)

The second thing to do/try is always: Close it, then “launch” it again. (You may need to use Task Manager to “End” the “Task” to get the malfunction program to close.)

If that fails, the third step is ALWAYS: reboot. (aka “restart”, aka “turn it off then turn it on again”.)

Only after you have done those three fundamental steps is it okay to think about calling tech support.

Why do I say that? Because those three things solve 99% (or so) of all “glitches”. And it is the first things your tech is going to ask you to do.
It really doesn’t matter what tech problem you are experiencing, nor on what device, nor who made it. A Samsung Wireless Internet Blu Ray player, or Sony camera, or Gateway laptop.

These are the ABC’s.

It’s 2012. We should all know these by heart. (Because even though they market us these doodads (and services) as mature and “easy to use”, truth is, they aren’t quite ready for Prime Time.)

Today’s reading reco: Tone The Brightness of Your Monitor Down With PangoBright

The illumination factor of the LCD and LED monitors of today, can be quite bright. To manage the illumination on my monitor, I use an automated utility called F.lux to manage the brightness of my monitor to match the indoor lighting.  It has been a keeper on my main PC for the past couple of” […] Read more..

Today’s quote: Each generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.” ~ George Orwell

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 17, 2012 Posted by | advice, consumer electronics, how to, tech, troubleshooting | , , , , | 2 Comments

Creeping Up On 100

(AKA “Sunday Beauty #94)

And yet again, here is another interesting image for your Sunday..

The sunset on the Sadská lake, near town Sadská, region Nymburk, country Czech Republic. By Petr Pakandl, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


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All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 15, 2012 Posted by | Digital Images | | 2 Comments

Watching Movies

Folks, I hope everyone is having a delightful summer weekend. But I know that some of you, well, things aren’t going to be so delightful. So for today’s post I am just going to take time enough to share with you a bumpersticker slogan I picked up from long ago.. probably because I watched a lot of old movies when I was a young’un.

Today’s quote:Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.” ~ John Wayne

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 14, 2012 Posted by | advice | Leave a comment

The Tap App

(AKA “Friday Fun”) (And Cisco is in the News again..)

Loyal readers know I am not an iPerson, and that I do not own a single iGadget — so I don’t write about those wonderful apps you can download from the iStore via iTunes, and keep synced with your iCloud.

But if I cared about ratings, I would probably – sooner or later – have to produce a Top 10 Apps list, and keep you updated on the hot new apps. Just to compete with everyone else who’s doing it. Instead..

Here is a video demonstration of one app for the iPad that actually made me consider rethinking the usefulness of that iDevice. Check it out and see if you don’t agree.

And all joking aside, I should be clear: I do fix and support Apple computers and laptops in my shop.

And I looked at the latest crop of Windows Phones yesterday. They don’t suck. (But I’d hold off til the next crop.)

It’s Friday. The weekend’s almost here. It’s summer. Not a bad combo…

Another Oopsie?! Department: Cisco is in the news. Again. Hackers can break into your Cisco TelePresence sessions

Major security holes in the Cisco TelePresence product line could allow attackers to execute arbitrary code, cause a denial-of-service condition, or inject commands.

If you rely on Cisco TelePresence products for sensive business communications, you might want to stop what you are doing and pay attention..Read more..

Also: Android users give malware apps permission to rob them, express shock at the results

Android malware posing as Super Mario or Grand Theft Auto wallpaper can get on your phone and, gasp, send SMS messages to a premium-rate number. Oh no, what will we ever do?Read more..

(Too funny. But, well, since this is targeting pubescent teens.. I suspect it’ll work. [Every single solitary thing on the ‘net is aimed at pubescent teens, I am beginning to think.] Super Mario wallpaper? Yeah, I want that.)

And, also: Is Facebook damaging your reputation with sneaky political posts?

Most of us have a Facebook profile, and most of us take a haphazard approach to segregating our business and personal lives. That can cause serious headaches, thanks to a troublesome new Facebook feature.Read more..

(I have never regretted not Facebook-ing, but many times have been glad I don’t!)

Today’s quote:An intelligent person is never afraid or ashamed to find errors in his understanding of things.” ~ Bryant H. McGill

Copyright 2007-2012 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.


>> Folks, don’t miss an article! To get Tech – for Everyone articles delivered to your e-mail Inbox, click here, or to subscribe in your RSS reader, click here. <<


All we really have, in the end, are our stories.
Make yours great ones. Ones to be proud of.

July 13, 2012 Posted by | Apple, consumer electronics, hackers, hardware, Internet, News, tech | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment