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December 10, 2012

Computer Encounters of the First Kind, Part I

Filed under: Main — admin @ 12:01 am

My High School had a computer lab and, naturally, I avoided it. At the time, I thought that computers were all about math. Having my Algebra II teacher as the computer science teacher didn’t help ease that perception. Even so, I was drawn to the lab.

December 7, 2012

My First Computer Job

Filed under: Main — admin @ 12:01 am

Sure, I worked during school and after I graduated, but my first job in “the industry” was working at a computer book publishing house. I think I started in 1985 or so, then left in 1987 to go it on my own. But my career began back then, working as a “technical writer” for CompuSoft publishing in El Cajon, California.

December 6, 2012

Microsoft Surface: Ffffft

Filed under: News — admin @ 7:02 am

That clunk sound you hear is the drop of the public’s interest in Microsoft’s once-hot tablet, the Microsoft Surface. Apparently consumers aren’t fired up about the unit, which has sold less than one million units in the fourth quarter. That officially makes the once-killer gizmo a flop.

It’s odd, too: I figured the surface would showcase Windows 8. After all, Windows 8 is geared by Microsoft into converting all desktop Windows users into tablet users, specifically the Surface and other Windows 8 tablets. I suppose that’s just not going to happen.


December 5, 2012

Notification Light Widget Available

Filed under: News — Tags: — admin @ 10:36 am

Tired of your phone’s notification light blinking incessantly? Especially when your phone may have a larger-than-normal blinking lamp? I once got an email from a reader who just couldn’t stand the blinking light because it was keeping her up at night. Well! Get some sleep with the new Motorola Notification Light Toggle widget:

Google Play Link

Install Phone Apps From Your Computer

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 12:01 am

Many of my Android books feature QR Code icons in the margins. The QR Codes can be scanned by the phone’s camera, and the results read and used to do various things. For example, you can visit a web site or pick up an app at the Google Play Store. There is, however, a more convenient way.

December 3, 2012

Microsoft Mouse 1.0

Filed under: Main — admin @ 12:01 am

A few weeks ago, I posted a news article about the demise of the computer mouse. That got me to thinking about my first computer mouse.

November 30, 2012

Off Your Christmas List: The Nexus 7 16GB

Filed under: News — admin @ 7:04 pm

Oh, I’m sure you want that Nexus 7 tablet, the one stocked with 16GB of internal storage. It’s the cat’s meow! But according to the ordering page at the Google Play Store, the delay is from six to seven weeks. That means your handy tablet won’t be getting there for Christmas! This is terrible!


When You Wish Upon an App

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 12:01 am

The Android Market, er, Google Play Store now has a Wish List feature. Though they call it “wishlist,” which is all one word, and it sounds very 21st Century, and it drives my spell checker nuts.

November 29, 2012

Smartphones as Car Computers

Filed under: News — admin @ 11:29 am

I remember being jealous of all those cars that featured their own computers, little monitors in the dash. That looked so cool! As it turns out, the “cool” computer is a boat anchor. From the article (below), people keep their cell phones for two years, typically. They keep their computers for six. Cars? They keep those for 10 years. Having a computer in your car today could be like running a copy of Windows 98 on your desktop. Or something like that.


November 28, 2012

Macintosh Meet Android

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 12:01 am

After writing a kajillion books on using Android phones and tablets, I’d pretty much given up on the notion of file transfer between Android and the Macintosh. You can try. Sometimes it works. Most of the time, it doesn’t. That was until I finally discovered the Android File Transfer program.

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