Here’s everything we know about Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S4 | Digital Trends

Tablets are becoming a rare breed; however, Samsung still continues to produce… The Galaxy Tab S4 appears to be latest in their lineup. Read more at Digital Trends

Last year, Samsung launched the Galaxy Tab S3. Rumors are now surfacing about its successor — the Galaxy Tab S4. While there aren’t too many details, various reports and rumored specs have helped us gather information on Samsung’s latest tablet. Here’s everything we know.

Source: Here’s everything we know about Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S4 | Digital Trends

There are two groups of people: those who use their smartphones or tablets in the bathroom, and those lying about using smartphones and tablets in the bathroom….

Our smartphones (and tablets) are an extension of ourselves; and, as result, we take them to the bathroom. Here is a good read on “Stop taking your gadgets into the bathroom. Here’s why…“.

Yes, your smartphone likely carries more germs than a toilet.

toilet

SOURCE: USA Today -Stop taking your gadgets into the bathroom. Here’s why 

Geek Squeaks (#2015-34) FEATURING — Samsung’s 18.4″ Galaxy View Tablet (can pre-order now) — and MORE GREAT STUFF

Samsung’s 18.4″ Galaxy View Tablet (can pre-order now) – Yes you are seeing that right. Samsung has developed an 18.4″ tablet called the Galaxy View that is in comparison to carrying a portable TV around; AND, that is exactly what I think Samsung is thinking in regards to this hugeous tablet. The pricing on this ($599) is a little steep for my pocketbook; however, if the price were to come within reason, I may consider the Galaxy View for home-based usage.

There are mixed reviews on this, from CNET’sSamsung has just taken the wraps off the best tablet we may have ever seen”, to the Verge’s “Samsung might’ve just priced itself out of success”… The Galaxy View is slated for release on November 6th and can be pre-ordered now… To see all the specs — CLICK HERE — scroll down the page and then click on “See All Specs”.

Samsung Galaxy View

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Multi-Device Bluetooth Keyboard for Computers, Tablets and Smartphones – The Logitech K480 is an excellent bluetooth keyboard, that works great either as an external keyboard for a Mac or a PC desktop system, or as a keyboard for a phone or a tablet. You can use this device to connect up to three Bluetooth wireless–capable computers or mobile devices. If this is something you may find of interest, check out Logitech’s Immersion Guide that will tell you everything you need to know about this keyboard.

Logitech Bluetooth Multi-Device Keyboard K480

You aren’t limited to a single device, so why should your keyboard be?

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How To Bypass Android’s Secured Lock Screen – If you do not have your Android smartphone (or tablet) locked down, I suggest that you take the time and lock it down. For example, to use my Nexus 5, I enter a pin number in order to operate the device.  The ONLY problem I see with locking down your device is the chance you forget the pattern, pin or password that you used. Well, don’t fret, I came across this article,7 Ways to Bypass Android’s Secured Lock Screen.  A lot of folks don’t want to lock down their devices due that it is an inconvenience; however if you ever lose the device you will soon learn that you wished you had taken the precaution of securing it.

Android Security

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Display A Host Of System Information-Type Data On Your DesktopBGInfo is a system information tool (portable app) that is very useful for people who manage numerous systems. BGInfo automatically displays relevant information about a Windows computer on the desktop’s background, such as the computer name, IP address, service pack version, and more. The information that BGInfo displays can be edited, as well as the font and background color. Stick this tool in the startup folder on your computer to display the system information each time the computer boots.

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How To Determine If Your Website Is Mobile-Friendly

Let’s face it, our mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) have become an attachment to our self. As a result, when we use the web browser on these devices we want the websites to load and fit the screen size without having to make adjustments. Web sites that are able to automatically make these adjustments are known as mobile-friendly sites. I know myself, if I visit a site on my smartphone and it is difficult to read and navigate, I typically will not revisit the site.

How important is this? If your site is not mobile-friendly (not formatted to fit the screen) there is a possibility your Google PageRank will be affected (read this). Of course site content is a major factor in maintaining a high PageRank; however, Google is now also factoring mobile friendliness into this mix, as well. To learn more about Google PageRanking  CLICK HERE

Mobile Friendly - What's On My PC

 

How To Determine If Your Site Is Mobile-Friendly

If you want to determine if your site (or any site for that matter) is mobile-friendly, I encourage you to take the Mobile-Friendly Test at the Google Developers web site.

 This test will analyze a URL and report if the page has a mobile-friendly design.

Learn more about the mobile-friendly criteria and how it may affect Google’s search results by reading our blog post.

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A Must Have Android App

Probably one of the most underused functions on computers, by the everyday computer user, is the copy and paste function. I am sure this is probably true when it comes to using our smartphones. As a matter of fact, I randomly asked some of the my friends if they knew how to copy and paste text on their Android phones??? As usual when I ask these geeky type of questions they sort of look at me with that deer in the headlight look and wonder what planet I am from. Every single person I asked this question did not know that was even possible on their phones.

Copying and pasting text from one app to another on our phones is a function you need to learn and if you want to get a good start on this I suggest that you take a look at Easy Copy.

Easy Copy - 1-Tap Copy Paste - screenshot

Easy Copy is an Android app that is better than the standard built-in copy paste function in that it has the following features that makes using the copy paste function a more powerful function. After you tap on copy, a pop-up menu will be displayed and allows to:

  • locate in Google Maps
  • call the number
  • translate with Google Translate
  • create an event
  • modify the text you copied (very useful in Hangouts when you only want to copy part of a message!)
  • send by text
  • share (when not already developed in the given application)

I found that when the menu appears to perform these function, you can drag the order of the menu around to fit your personal needs. For example, on top of my menu list is the “share” function, due I use that function the most.

This app appears to be relatively new app in the Google Play store, so expect some bugaboos; however, my geek senses is telling me that this app will improve and become very, very popular…

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A Bluetooth Speaker For Under $30 That Has Me Sold

To compliment my Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 Tablet, I went on the hunt for a bluetooth speaker. Never having owned a bluetooth speaker, I soon found that there are so many different models and types of these speakers to the point that you can easily get lost in the hunt.

What I was looking for was something that was reasonable in size, sounds good, and is under $50.  If you are not familiar with these little speakers, they are primarily used to wirelessly connect (via bluetooth technology) your smartphone or tablet so that you can listen to music, podcasts, videos, etc… It actually adds a whole other dimension to your handheld devices.

After researching bluetooth speakers at various sites on the internet, I ended up at Amazon where I could make cost and feature comparisons and get a good feel of where a particular speaker stood based on the customer reviews (which is a strong point at Amazon).

What I found was a bluetooth speaker called the DKnight Magicbox (for under $30), that in my opinion, deserves a 5 star rating. As a matter of fact if you look at the customer reviews on this speaker you will find that the DKnight Magicbox has had over 5500 customer reviews and is carrying a near 5 star rating.

CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE

DKnight Magicbox

Straight out of the box I was able to seamlessly connect my tablet to the speaker. The first time I heard the sound, coming from such a small footprint, I was totally amazed. Yes, you can spend a lot of money for a bluetooth speaker, but I am telling you don’t do it.  Give the DKnight Magicbox a try before you do.

Here is what I liked about this speaker:

  • It just plain looks nice (with a rubber top and rubber bottom)…
  • There is an “on and off” switch on the side of the unit and controls on the top of the unit (for volume, to move forward/backward in your music que, to pause and to answer your phone)…
  • When charging, a red led light is displayed.  When the speaker is fully charged the light will go out.
  • There is a micro SD card slot on the unit.  Load your MP3’s on the SD card and speaker will play them…
  • It has two highly powerful 40mml total 6W acoustic drivers that produces a wide spectrum of audio…
  • It is less than $30…

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No Crap With This App (Android Public Toilet Finder)

I have to love Android and the constant flow of apps that are constantly under development. Flush – The Android Public Toilet Finder is one of the newer apps to hit the Google Play Store that is a real attention grabber.

 Flush - Public Toilet Finder

Flush is a database, with a pretty nice interface (with animations) that will help you find the local public john using the Google Map technology. My first question to this is what happens when I am in need and there is no internet access. No problem with Flush; it works offline, as well.

Features:

. Find public restrooms/toilets quickly and easily

. Locate toilets anywhere around the world, wherever you are

. A database of over 100,000 toilets available, constantly being increased

. A beautiful material design inspired interface

. A quick directions button, to get you directions to a toilet as quickly as possible

. Find whether a toilet has a fee, requires a key or provides disabled/accessibility access

. Works perfectly offline, no internet connection required to find a toilet

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How To Activate the Floating Assistant Menu On The Samsung Galaxy Tab S

I recently purchased the Samsung Galaxy Tab S (8.4 inch) Android tablet; AND, after having owned several Android tablets, this one is definitely the cream of the crop.

I continue to learn to navigate the tablet and came across a setting that I have found to be very useful that many users most likely will not try (because they do not know it is there or how to turn it “on”). It is called an Assistant Menu, that once activated, creates a small (square) floating icon (that can be moved around the screen) that will give you the ability to launch various actions, such as:

  • Home
  • Back
  • Recently Opened Apps
  • Lock and Turn Off Screen
  • Brightness Adjustment
  • Volume Adjustment
  • Screen Capture
  • Open Notification List
  • Power Off
  • Restart
  • Device Options
  • Settings
  • Cursor
  • More Options
  • Rotate Screen
  • Zoom

SPECIAL NOTE: If you notice on the list above there is one option that will give you the ability to grab screenshots, which is worth its’ weight in gold. I used that option to create the screenshot below.

The neat thing about all of this is that this floating assistant menu can be edited; and, the functions you find that you would use the most, can be reordered. The menu is easy to turn “on” and if you find you do not like it, simply go back and turn it “off”.

To turn this menu “on” and to get you to the place to where you need to be, here is how to turn “on” and edit the menu:

  • On the Apps screen, tap Settings > Device > Accessibility > Dexterity and Interaction
  • Tap the Assistant Menu Switch to toggle the switch to “on”. The Assistant Menu icon will appear at the bottom right of the screen (at which point it can be moved around).
  • To edit the menu, simply tap where it says  Assistant Menu > Edit (see screenshot below). At this point you can drag the icons around and place them in the order you desire. The order you see below is the actual order I set for my menu.  You can also remove various components from the menu.  For example, using the screenshot below, I opted to remove Cursor, More Options, Rotate Screen and Zoom from the menu.

Assistant Menu

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Receive The Most Interesting News Headlines Three Times A Day Via Push Notifications With SmartNews

I depend on my Android devices (tablet and smartphone) to provide me with the latest news headlines from around the world. I have tried numerous news apps and the one that I have settled down to and really look forward to reading is SmartNews.

SmartNews - screenshot

SmartNews uses a proprietary algorithm to analyze over 10 million articles a day to give you the top trending stories from a variety of news sources. The interface is optimized for readability with zero loading time (read offline). If you are a newshound, I really think you will like this app.

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Most Helpful Positive Review On The Samsung Galaxy S 8.4 Inch Tablet

After reviewing and researching the newer Android Tablet brands out there, I am pretty much sold on The Samsung Galaxy S 8.4 Inch Tablet. If you keep checking, you will find that Amazon will periodically drop the price from $399 to $349 (was at that price today when I wrote this post).  I could give some pretty good insight on this tablet; but, why reinvent the wheel (see most helpful positive review below).

Samsung Galaxy S 8.4 Inch Tablet

Samsung Galaxy S

You can get the Most Helpful Positive Review on this tablet by one of Amazon’s recognized “most trusted reviewers:

Amazing tablet, with a screen that brings color to life…

First Look: Hands on review

Rating 4.5 Stars (Excellent Tablet but not a perfect 5 star). Unfortunately there is no half rating with Amazon so I went with a 4

There is no question that Samsung has flooded the market with tablets in the past year. From low range to upper range. When the Tab Pro 8.4 came out a few months ago I knew that was the Android I have been waiting for. Of course had I known the Tab S was coming out I would have waited for this tablet. That takes nothing away from the Pro because it is an excellent tablet and I assume there will be further discounting. I broke up my review into sections so you can jump to a section faster… READ MORE

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I Wish Someone Would Buy Me This Android Tablet

I love the Android devices and as Christmas nears I keep salivating over the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4-Inch Tablet. I have had the opportunity to handle one of these at the local box store and that is all it took. What is mesmerizing about this tablet is the display (Super AMOLED 2560×1600 WQXGA Resolution) that sets it apart from anything else out there. I like the idea of the microSD slot (upgradeable to 128GB), the 3 GB of ram, and that the engine under this lightweight thin tablet is a 1.9 GHz Exynos 5 Octa Processor (1.9 GHz Quad Core + 1.3 GHz Quad Core). The Amazon customer reviews are confirming what I am thinking on this.

I was thinking if I posted this on the blog, someone out there (like my wife), would send a poor blogger like me this Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 Inch Tablet… Oh, I almost forgot, shipping on these at Amazon are FREE…

Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4-Inch Tablet 

Samsung Galaxy S Tablet 8.4 Inch

At a Glance:

  • Super AMOLED 8.4-inch display for bright and vivid graphics
  • Use two apps at the same time with Multi Window
  • Rear and front cameras for photos and video chat
  • Lightweight, ultra-thin design for portability
  • Add up to 128 GB memory with microSD slot
  • Fingerprint scanner for security
  • Share tablet with Multi-User and Kids Modes
  • Up to ten hours of battery life, and even more with Ultra Power Saving mode

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GEEK SQUEAKS – Featuring The Metro Vacuum ED500 DataVac

[FEATURED GEEK SQUEAK] The Metro Vacuum ED500 DataVac – This datavac is actually a blower that is made to clean your computer and electronics more effectively than canned air (and safer than canned air).  Features a 500 watt motor at .75 HP, 4.5 amps, 70 CFM air flow. I recommend wearing safety eyewear when using this. Very powerful.  Excellent ratings… @Amazon

Metro Vacuum ED500 DataVac

Metro Vacuum ED500 DataVac

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MORE GEEK SQUEAKS

[NEW MOUSE] Logitech introduces the G502 Proteus Core mouseLogitech introduces the G502 Proteus Core mouse. The mouse is corded and has 11 programmable buttons. The DPI can be adjusted in game from 200-12,000 DPI and you can tune the weight and balance of the mouse using the provided weights. The most exciting feature of the G502 Proteus Core is its ability to adapt to different surfaces. It will sense the surface and adjust the sensitivity accordingly… @404 TECH SUPPORT

[ANDROID – HOW TO] 4 Ways To Get Data Usage On Your Android Phone Under Control – Roaming on your mobile data plan is rarely cheap but almost always necessary. You can control how much data you use on your device by simply opting for a plan with a data cap and price to match your budget but you can take things a little further and manage your data plan better by limiting how data is used. Here are a few things you can do on any Android device to manage your data plan… @Addictive Tips

[WINDOWS 8] Hands-on with the Windows 8.1 Update (pictures)@c|net

[TABLET NEWS] Lenovo to roll out more low-priced Android tablets in MayMore inexpensive Android tablets with prices from $129 to $249 are coming from Lenovo. The new Tab A-series tablets, which will ship next month, have screen sizes ranging from 7-10 inches and are designed for Web surfing and home entertainment, Lenovo said. Other than screen sizes and weight, the tablets have mostly identical features… @COMPUTERWORLD

[WINDOWS 8.1 UPDATE] Windows 8.1 Update 1 is Now Available –The latest patch to Windows is largely geared at improving the experience for mouse and keyboard users, and also to add new amenities for those who spend most of their time in Desktop Mode… @Daily Tech


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Geek Squeaks – Featuring An Antivirus With Practically No Impact On Your PC’s Performance

[FEATURED GEEK SQUEAK] Bitdefender Antivirus FREE Edition – When it comes to the frontline protection of my PC at home (on the cheap), I personally depend on the FREE edition of Bitdefender.

Bitdefender Antivirus FREE Edition

What I especially like about Bitdefender is its’ reputation for providing ironclad security without slowing down your computer and that it is virtually maintenance free (built in autoscan that focuses virus detection efforts on risky areas).  I have been running the FREE edition for quite awhile and have installed it on other PC’s and have not one complaint… @Bitdefender

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MORE GEEK SQUEAKS

[ANDROID] Antivirus FREE for Android – Bitdefender Antivirus Free utilizes high-detection engines, coupled with in-the-cloud scanning capabilities, to keep Android devices safe from attack – with minimal impact on resources. Malware Protection – Cloud Scanning – Low Battery Impact… @Bitdefender

[NETWORKING] Need a small wireless access point or wireless router? – Here’s one of the smallest, feature packed and powerful routers for under $30.  The NetShair Nano by iogear offers some of the most features money can buy.  Here’s how it works (interactive)… @TCAT Shelbyville – Technical Blog

[HOT NEWS] Amazon to Unveil Free TV and Movie Streaming Service: ReportThis new service, which could launch “in the coming months,” according to the Wall Street Journal, would offer original programming like its comedies “Alpha House” and “Betas,” as well as music videos. It could also include TV shows and movies licensed from other sources… @NBC News

[HOW TO] Send Email to OneNote – Another neat new OneNote capability – With last week’s expansion of OneNote as a platform, Microsoft has added a nice new capability: You can now send email messages from your inbox to your OneNote-based notebooks… @Paul Thurrott’s Supersite For Windows

[SOFTWARE] Recover Your Router Password (RouterPassView) – RouterPassView enables you to recover your router password and wireless network keys if you have a backup of your router configuration saved as local file. It can load and decrypt the configuration file, providing you with a list of all passwords and keys that are stored in the file… @SnapFiles

[HOT NEWS] It’s Official: Microsoft Releases Office for iPad (And yes, Hell has frozen over) – As expected, Microsoft today announced Office for iPad, which is really a set of new mobile productivity apps—Word, Excel and PowerPoint—plus an update to OneNote, which was previously available. These apps aren’t upscaled versions of the Office Mobile apps on iPhone, they’re all-new apps engineered for the unique iPad capabilities and screen size… @WindowsITPro

[TABLET COMPUTER] The sharpest 7″ tablet screen ever – Nexus 7 from Google – The world’s highest-resolution 7″ tablet puts over 2.3 million pixels in the palm of your hand. With 323 pixels packed into every inch, you can read text that’s sharper than the printed page, see images more vivid than the highest quality photo magazine, and watch videos come to life in vibrant 1080p HD… @AMAZON

[WALLPAPER] Blue Burst… @Microsoft

Blue Burst


Learn a byte at a time with Geek Squeaks’ — featuring a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it… I just plain love tech!

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GEEK SQUEAKS OF THE WEEK – Featuring CrowdInspect (Detect Untrusted Or Malicious Network-Active Processes)

[FEATURED GEEK SQUEAK]  CrowdInspect – Today’s lineup of Geek Squeaks’ starts out with a FREE (community based) portable tool called CrowdInspect. What this tool does is help alert you to the presence of potential malware processes that may exist on your computer.

CrowdInspect

CrowdInspect is a host based inspection tool that will help you identify these malicious processes by using multiple outside (and reputable) sources of information including VirusTotal, Web of Trust (WOT), and Team Cymru’s Malware Hash Registry CrowdInspect can be used during Incident Response process to rapidly identify potential malicious running processes on a machine… @CrowdInspect

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MORE GEEK SQUEAKS

[SECURITY] WinPatrol adds Safe Update, Restore Deleted Files features – BillP Studios has updated its snapshot-based security tool for Windows with the release ofWinPatrol 30.5.2014. The new incremental release comes with two major new features, plus an upgrade discount for XP users as End of Life approaches. The first new feature allows WinPatrol users to restore files previously deleted by the program. The second new feature is restricted to users of the paid-for Plus version, and comes in the shape of a new “Check for Safe Updates” button… @betanews

[HOW TO] How To Hook A Wireless Mouse to Your Android Device – If your one of those folks that miss using a physical device with your computer powered devices, and you happened to purchase an Android powered device, then your in luck. With the latest operating system, the Jellybean operating system, and newer, you can have the ability to use a wireless mouse with your Android powered device, and even a physical keyboard… @The Tech Tip Channel

[NEWS] I quit! 10 things that drove me out of IT – For what seemed like an eternity, I served as a support tech for a managed service provider (MSP). Starting the job, I had no idea what I was getting into. As the saying goes, “If I knew then what I know now….” Would I have stepped foot into the world of remote support? It’s hard to say. What is not so hard to say is why I eventually gave up being a support technician. In fact, I can give you 10 reasons why… @TechRepublic

[WIFI SECURITY] SoftPerfect WiFi Guard – A simple tool which makes it easy to detect intruders on your local network. No install – Portable App… @SoftPerfect

[TABLET COMPUTER] Lenovo Yoga Multimode 10-inch Tablet With Epic 18-Hour Battery Life

image

Yoga Tablet 10’s pioneering design incorporates a battery cylinder and kickstand on the side of the device, shifting the center of gravity and opening up multiple usage modes: Hold, Tilt, and Stand. In hold mode, the weight of the device falls into your palm rather than your fingers, making it more comfortable for reading and browsing. Lay it down for Tilt mode and you have a perfect viewing angle for typing or gaming. Flick the kickstand and rest it upright in Stand mode to comfortably watch videos, listen to music, or video-chat… @Amazon

[ANDROID] – NewsHog: Google News & Weather – NewsHog is the most comprehensive, feature rich, free news aggregator on Google Play. NewsHog gives you the most news on any topic or location of your choice,aggregated via Google News! NewsHog has many advanced features such as summarization, reader mode, text to speech, offline reading and translation that take the Google News experience to the next level. NewsHog is a worthy replacement for Google Currents or the News and Weather app… @Google Play

[NEWS] Experts: ‘Very Unlikely’ Missing Malaysian Jet Was Hacked – Several versions of the hack theory have bubbled up, however. For example, one theory suggests that a person placed malicious software into the plane’s systems to force it to change direction mid-flight. It would be “astronomically difficult” for someone to get that kind of access.. @NBC News

[WALLPAPER] The First Day of Spring… @WallpaperStop

The First Day of Spring

 


Learn a byte at a time with Geek Squeaks’ — featuring a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it… I just plain love tech!

Be Sure To Visit Bookmarks4Techs.com

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Today’s Geek Squeaks – December 21, 2013

LAST FREE VERSION of Weather Watcher… One of my favorite weather programs.

MANAGE YOUR ANDROID FROM A WEB BROWSER, all over the air. Take control of your Android phone or tablet from the comfort of your computer.  No wires required…

TODAY’S RANDOM TECH SITE PICK features a ton of stuff on Windows (especially Windows 8.1) and other tech stuff. This is a super site…

TOP 10 TECH FAILS of 2013… Can you guess what they were???

NEXUS 7 brings you the perfect mix of power and portability and features the world’s sharpest 7″ tablet screen. This is the tablet ot buy…

[ COMMENTS ARE WELCOME – CLICK HERE ]


Weather Watcher 5.5.63 (Last Free Version)

image

This is one of my most favorite Weather applications.  It is still in development; however, went the shareware route. I was able to find the last freeware (FREE) version [click here] .  So far, running great on Windows 8.1…


AirDroid

(Android)

image

AirDroid is a free and fast Android device manager app that helps you manage your Android phone/tablet from a web browser, all over the air… GET IT HERE


Today’s Random Tech Site Pick (with sample article)

image

New security features added to Microsoft Accounts – Microsoft has added three new security features to its Microsoft Account which you use to sign into various Microsoft’s services like SkyDrive, Outlook.com and Windows 8. A recent activity page, new recovery codes option and more control of security notifications has been added… READ MORE

Featured Topics:

Windows 8.2 to bring back the Start Menu
UXTheme Multi-Patcher 9.0 Released – Windows 8/8.1 support
Nero BackItUp – 5GB Free Online Storage
Animated Christmas Tree for Windows desktop
New VLC for Windows 8.1 Screenshots


Top 10 tech fails of 2013

@ NBC News

image

It was a year of great tech triumphs, including big and beautiful phablets, a new wave of easy-to-use fitness trackers and cheap-but-versatile gadgets like the Chromecast. The jury is still out on smartwatches. But there’s just as much cause for hand-wringing among tech companies whose new products flopped… READ MORE


Google Nexus 7 Tablet (7-Inch, 16GB, Black) by ASUS

image

Nexus 7 is made by ASUS and packs a serious punch. With a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon™ S4 Pro processor and 2GB of RAM, everything runs faster. Plus, high-performance rendering ensures 3D graphics are smooth and dynamic…ensures 3D graphics are smooth and dynamic… CHECK IT OUT HERE


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – November 19, 2013

A FREE COMMAND-LINE TOOL to recover the product/serial Keys of Windows and other popular software…

THE $200 CHROMEBOOK C720 BY ACER may be the way to go to meet your computer and internet needs…

DECIDING BETWEEN A LAPTOP OR TABLET requires some real forethought. Let Dom’s Computer Tech Blog get you on the right track with, “Should You Choose A Laptop or Tablet?”…

ANDROID SCREEN OFF AND LOCK is an android app designed to quickly shut off your android devices…

Geek Squeaks’ features a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it;  from my favorite tech web sites… I just plain love tech!

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Windows License Key Dump

If you lost a software license key for a software product you purchased, you may want to give this command line utility a try, called Windows License Key Dump, to recover the key. Thanks to Bill Mullin’s over at Tech Thoughts for this one…

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It automatically detects and decrypts the license/serial keys of over 200+ popular softwares including Office, SQL Server, Adobe, Nero and many more. The complete list is given below.

Windows License Key Dump’ works on both 32-bit & 64-bit platforms starting from Windows XP to Windows 8GET IT HERE


Acer C720 Chromebook
(11.6-Inch, Haswell micro-architecture, 2GB)

For $200 bucks, this Chromebook (by Acer) is something to really take a look at, especially if you only need something to get on the internet. Let’s face it, most of our computer time is on the internet.

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Chromebooks are designed to be connected to the Internet. You can create documents and spreadsheets or edit photos on a Chromebook using Google apps designed for these purposes. The Chrome operating system will not load and run traditional PC software like Microsoft Office and Adobe Photoshop. However, files created in these applications can be viewed and edited using Google apps on your Chromebook or cloud-based applications like Microsoft’s Office web apps… CHECK IT OUT HERE


Should you Choose a Laptop or a Tablet?

@ Dom’s Computer Tech Blog

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Choosing between a laptop and a tablet can be quite a tricky situation. As such, you can’t just pick one based on the mere fact that one is better than the other. There are some reasons and factors that come into play when talking about the two… READ MORE


Screen Off and Lock

I was recently looking for a software (or app) option to turning off my Android phone by tapping on an app shortcut on the screen (instead of using the hardware button). What I found was a very nice app called Screen Off and Lock that works very nicely and has several options such as screen off animations (that are very cool).

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Screen Off and Lock allows you to switch off your devices from:
1. Launcher shortcut
2. Launcher widget 1×1 – 4×4, resizable in Android 4.0+ (Also available in lock screen for Android 4.2+) (Donate version)
3. Notification
4. Floating button over all apps! (Double tap to use it) (Donate version)
5. Search button (if your device has it)

Other features:
1. Screen off animation (including the most famous Old TV style)
2. Screen lock/unlock sound effect
3. Screen off vibration

GET IT HERE


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – November 14, 2013

SNAPY the resizeable, movable & adjustable Android camera app that’s always there…

FASTSTONE IMAGE VIEWER WAS RECENTLY UPDATED to include a “design and print” feature that gives you the ability to print multiple images with text and effects on one page…

SOME ELEMENTARY STEPS you should always take to troubleshoot and resolve PC problems…

AN ULTRABOOK THAT THINKS IT IS A TABLET or is it a tablet that thinks it is an ultrabook???

Geek Squeaks’ features a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it;  from my favorite tech web sites… I just plain love tech!

[ COMMENTS ARE WELCOME – CLICK HERE ]


Snapy Is A Floating, Resizable Android Camera App
With A Built-In Editor

@ Addictive Tips

One of my everyday reads is Addictive Tips… Recently they posted a really cool Android App called Snapy that changes the way you use the camera on your smartphone and tablet.

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When was the last time you used a Camera app on your smartphone or tablet and you said ‘wow’? Because today just might happen to be that day after you use Snapy, The Floating Camera on Android. Unlike any traditional camera app, Snapy is designed to let you take photos no matter where you are or what app you’re using… READ MORE


FastStone Image Viewer Update

The only image viewer that I have on my PC and carry on my flash drives (as a portable app) is FastStone Image Viewer. This application does more than just view images. It is a fast, stable, user-friendly image browser, converter and editor. Once you learn how to use FastStone image viewer you will become a user forever…

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Most recently FastStone Image Viewer was updated to include the following:

Added “Design and Print” (press Alt+P), which allows you to print multiple images with text and effects on one page

Improved “Adjust Curves“. Now you can click and drag in image to adjust the curves directly. Endpoints of the curves are adjustable

Added “Print Size” option to the Resize tab of the batch convert tool

Added support of video files to the batch rename tool

Added “Auto-Resize” option to the image-scanning tool

Added “Show in Google Maps” and “Show in Google Earth” buttons to the “Image Properties” window. These buttons will be visible if the image has GPS information

Many other small improvements and bug fixes

GET IT HERE


Five Really Simple Tricks and Tips
that Solve a Lot of PC Problems

@ gizmo’s

Another daily read of mine is gizmo’s freeware. Today they posted an article that I can truly relate to that you should first try when you are experiencing PC problems. You do not need to be tech savvy to use these tips. I don’t know how many times, myself, I have told people experiencing PC problems to check the cables, reboot, turn the device on/off, etc…  All elementary steps, but necessary steps!

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After you work with PCs for a while, you learn some really simple tricks that solve many of the problems that plague PC users. These tricks are not in any instruction book but they work in a surprising number of situations. Here are five that I have used over and over… READ MORE


Acer Aspire P3-171-6820 11.6-Inch Convertible 2-in-1 Touchscreen Ultrabook

A fully functioning 11.6″ Windows 8 Ultrabook that transforms into a sleek and stylish tablet… Now how cool is that!

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Key Features

  • 11.6″ HD 1366 x 768 resolution, Acer CineCrystal™ LED-backlit TFT LCD with integrated 10-Point multi-touch screen, supporting finger touch and image auto rotation
  • Windows 8
  • 3rd Generation Intel® Core™ i5-3339Y Processor 1.5GHzwith Turbo Boost Technology up to 2.0GHz
  • 4GB of DDR3 On-Board System Memory
  • Intel® HD Graphics 4000with 128MB of dedicated system memory
  • 120GB Solid State Drive
  • Optimized Dolby® Home Theater® v4 audio enhancement
  • Two Built-in Stereo Speakers
  • Integrated Digital Microphone
  • Acer Invilink™ Nplify™ 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi Certified™
  • Bluetooth® 4.0 + HS
  • 1- USB 3.0 Port
  • 1 – Micro-HDMI™ out with HDCP support
  • 5MP Rear-facing HD camera
  • Front-Facing HD Camera
  • Sensors:Gyroscope, E-Compass, Accelerometer, Ambient light sensor
  • 4-Cell Li-Ion Battery
  • INCLUDES Protective Case with Bluetooth Keyboard

CHECK IT OUT HERE


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – November 10, 2013


Summary Listing of Today’s Geek Squeaks’:

– A better sound control utility for Windows
– Know what files to backup prior to reinstalling Windows
– How to increase battery life on the Nexus 5 (KitKat)
– Eliminate smartphone and tablet cord clutter

Geek Squeaks’ features a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it;  from my favorite tech web sites… I just plain love tech!

[ COMMENTS ARE WELCOME – CLICK HERE ]


SimpleSndVol

SimpleSndVol is a simple application that sits in your system tray near the clock and provides some useful and fast ways to control your sound volume and balance.

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This is my go to sound volume control on my PC. More features than the standard Windows sound volume control

  • Easy access to sound balance with one click.
  • Global hotkeys to change or mute volume.
  • Change sound volume with mouse wheel/scroll. Hover tray icon and scroll up or down. Very useful.
  • Middle click on tray icon will mute the sound.
  • Several nice icon sets for tray.

GET IT HERE


Files to Backup before Reinstalling Windows

@ Dom’s Tech & Computer Blog

If you are thinking about reinstalling windows or you are in a position where you have to reinstall Windows, take a step back and think about what personal data (the important stuff) that needs to be backed up. To help you along, Dom’s Tech & Computer Blog has compiled a listing of files you need to backup prior to reinstalling Windows.

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Many situations may require the re-installation of Windows on your PC. This may lead to loss of vital personal files unless you backup your files or if these files happen to be saved on some other remote drive.

Because of this, it is important to know exactly what files to to backup just before you reinstall Windows on your desktop or laptop computer… READ MORE


Five settings that increase battery life
on Android 4.4 KitKat

@ c|net

As the smartphone and tablet continues to become more enriched in features; it is these features that can cause a drain on your battery. c|net has a nice article up to help you identify what and where these battery draining culprits are and how to disable them (featuring the Nexus 5 and KitKat). The tips provided here in this article will definitely give you some more battery life.

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If you’re looking to get more juice out of your phone’s battery, or are one of the many people with a Nexus 5 plagued by a possible battery issue, change these settings… READ MORE


Bamboo Multi Device Charging Station

There’s room to store a laptop, tablet and up to three other mobile devices like smartphones, cell phones or portable gaming devices.

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The bottom of the charging station has a magnetic base that flips open to reveal a hidden storage area for organizing the wires that would otherwise clutter your desk space. The built in elastic straps keep everything tidy and in its right place… CHECK IT OUT HERE


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – October 16, 2013

A summary of Today’s Geek Squeaks:

Squeak #1 – (Reduce The Risk Of Your Computer Being Attacked or Infected): Bill Mullins’, writer of Tech Thoughts Daily Net News, started off this morning with Avast 2014 FREE Edition, as being the lead topic (and rightfully so). I encourage you to bookmark Bill’s site to get the latest and greatest in tech news (and more).

To get Avast 2014 FREE Edition, see below. Remember, it is important to uninstall any antivirus program you have installed on your PC prior to installing another (GET AVAST BELOW);

Squeak #2 – (When Delete Means Delete): When you delete a file on your computer or other drives, the file becomes hidden from view, but can actually remain present on the drive until it is written over with other data. This data can be there a long time and can be easily recovered using many of the free utilities that are available on the internet. To completely delete a file, you need special software such as Hardwipe (SEE BELOW);

Squeak #3 – (Crooks Using Cash Register Skimmers): Today.com has an interesting piece posted today about high tech thieves using PS/2 keyboard loggers (which are available on the internet) to capture data that is inputted at the cash register level (SEE BELOW);

Squeak #4 – (NEW – A 21.5 Inch All-In-One Android Computer by HP): I knew it would be a matter of time before Android would be on desktop size computers. I like this concept and would be the perfect computer for Mom and Pop (SEE BELOW)…

[ CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A COMMENT ]

Geek Squeaks’, featuring a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, wallpapers, articles, you name it;  from my favorite tech web sites… I just plain love tech!

See An Endless Stream Of Geek Squeaks’ [ HERE ]


Avast! Free Edition 2014 9.0.2006 Final

@ Major Geeks

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Avast! is a package of applications that aim to protect your computer from a possible virus infection or other malware threat. If you use it correctly, and in combination with other programs such as data backup utilities, it will significantly reduce the risk of your computer being attacked or infected by a virus, and thus the risk of losing important or private data… GET IT HERE


File Eraser & Drive Wiper

Hardwipe

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Hardwipe can erase drives and USB media, but can also sanitize the Windows Recycle Bin, overwrite selected files and folders, and clean unused drive space of unwanted remenant data. Furthermore, you can run Hardwipe as a standard-alone application, or use its convenient “right-click” context menus from within the Windows File Explorer… GET IT HERE


Shoppers getting ripped off by tiny,
high-tech cash register skimmers…

@ TODAY.com

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Crooks who steal credit and debit card numbers have found a devious new way to snag this information. They’re using a small and relatively cheap piece of off-the-shelf technology to compromise computerized store cash registers… READ MORE


HP Slate 21-k100 21.5-Inch All-in-One Touchscreen Desktop

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Android just hit the big screen. Let everyone in the house enjoy their favorite Google Play contention this big, Full HD touchscreen… CHECK IT OUT


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – July 29, 2013


A summary of Today’s Geek Squeaks
:

  • TCAT Shelbyville posted two links to two new technologies that are available, that you need to check out;
  • If you are a Gmail user, learn “how to” compose an email using Gmail’s new compose window;
  • Windows 8 throwing you for a loop(?); then make sure you bookmark the 60 tips that TechRadar is throwing at us;
  • Are desktop computers becoming the way of the dinosaur?; AND,
  • If you are like me, I have my eye on the NEW Nexus 7 tablet.  Amazon currently has them in stock.

[ CLICK HERE TO LEAVE A COMMENT ]


Two Finds At TCAT Shelbyville

SanDisk unveils wireless flash drives that hold up to 64GB

Another Cloud Storage Alternative


How to get a full-screen Gmail
compose window every time

@PCWorld

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By default, when you click Gmail’s Compose button, you get a window that appears in the right corner of the screen. Now there’s a new option. In the top-right corner of that Compose window, you’ll see three icons: Minimize, Full-screen, and Close. Clicking that middle one enlarges the window, though the description “full-screen” is a little disingenuous here: you actually get a larger, centered window that darkens the background… READ MORE


60 Windows 8 tips, tricks and secrets

@TechRadar

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Windows 8 has seen the biggest change since the jump from Windows 3.1 to Windows 95… GET THE TIPS


Why the PC Industry Will Never Rebound

@PCMag

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This reality of the declining PC demand has hit all PC vendors very hard. However, Microsoft has taken the brunt of this because its core product, Windows, is being thrashed by upstart operating systems like iOS and Android… READ MORE


Amazon Has The NEW Nexus 7 Tablet

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NEW – Nexus 7 brings you the perfect mix of power and portability and features the world’s sharpest 7″ tablet screen… SEE IT HERE


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – July 27, 2013

A summary of Today’s Geek Squeaks:

  • Protect yourself on the internet by using Sandboxie to run your web browser;
  • A good review from AnandTech on the NEW Nexus 7;
  • An Android app to help keep you slim and trim;
  • Learn to use VirtualBox to run more than one operating system on your computer; AND,
  • A Lenovo Ultrabook Computer that thinks it is a tablet.

Surf The Internet In A Sandbox of Safety With Sandboxie

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Sandboxie runs your programs in an isolated space which prevents them from making permanent changes to other programs and data in your computer.  Secure Web Browsing: Running your Web browser under the protection of Sandboxie means that all malicious software downloaded by the browser is trapped in the sandbox and can be discarded trivially… GET IT HERE


Nexus 7 (2013) – Mini Review

The big new features update the Nexus 7 platform with inclusion of a 1.5 GHz Snapdragon S4 Pro (APQ8064) SoC, 1920×1200 display by JDI (Japan Display Inc), as well as 5 MP rear facing camera, 1.2 MP front facing camera, stereo speakers, dual band WiFI, wireless charging (Qi) and a thinner and lighter chassis… READ MORE


Gymprovise (Android) – An app to help you get and stay fit

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“Up your motivation, improve your fitness, and stay on track with Gymprovise – a powerful, versatile, and flexible workout tracker for the Gym and outdoors, which gives you everything you need to plan, track, and review all your fitness activity… READ MORE


How To Install More Than 1 OS On A Single Partition
Using VirtualBox

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VirtualBox is a freeware software that can emulate a virtual hard drive using some space on your real hard drive on some OS. The virtual hard drive on the VirtualBox system can then be used as a new computer itself and can be used to install and use any other OS that you can install on any normal hard drive… READ MORE


Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 13 13.3-Inch Convertible Touchscreen Ultrabook

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Yoga 13 combines the productivity of an Ultrabook™ with the touch experience of a tablet, taking full advantage of the Windows 8 functionality. The screen flips a full 360 degrees into four modes that make it easy to create, share, or consume content. Combine those with its long battery life, and the Yoga 13 provides ultimate versatility… READ MORE


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Today’s Geek Squeaks – July 26, 2013

Today’s  Geek Squeaks‘ summary:

  • An easy (and portable) way to transfer files, on a network, without worrying about users, permissions, etc… ;
  • Get a T-Mobile phone for $0;
  • See the inside guts of the new Chromecast; AND,
  • If you are a big time book reader, then your tablet of choice should be the Kindle Paperwhite…

Dukto R6

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If you don’t know Dukto, I can tell you that it’s an easy file transfer tool designed for LAN use. I use it in my everyday work to transfer files from one PC (or other device) to another, without worrying about users, permissions, operating systems, protocols, clients, servers and so on… Just start Dukto on the two PCs and transfer files and folders by dragging onto it’s window… GET IT HERE


T-Mobile turns up the heat, offers all phones for $0 down

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T-Mobile is pulling out all the stops lately as part of their new “un-carrier” strategy. As of tomorrow, eligible customers will be able to purchase a new phone with no money down and pay for it via monthly payments for the next 24 months… READ MORE


iFixit Cracks Open Google’s $35 Chromecast Dongle

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Inside they found a tiny logic board encased in “a big hunk of aluminum heat sink.” That’s a relative term of course, the heat sink for this 2-inch unit is only “big” in terms of how much of the Chromecast’s insides it occupies… READ MORE


The Best Device For Reading. Period.

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Paperwhite guides light towards the display from above instead of projecting it out at your eyes like back-lit displays, thereby reducing screen fatigue. You can adjust your screen’s brightness to create a perfect reading experience in all lighting conditions, from bright sunlight to bedtime reading… READ MORE


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Geek Squeaks’ of the Week (#78)

Microsoft dropping the price of the Surface  RT tablet; an update to one of the best FREE image editing software packages out there; how to setup Prey to track a lost or stolen laptop; download and save Microsoft updates using Microsoft’s Update Catalog; and, protect yourself from power surges…

Plan on seeing more of Geek Squeaks’, featuring a round-up of tech products, news, software, apps, articles, you name it;  from my favorite tech web sites…


Microsoft drops price of Surface RT 32GB to $349, 64GB to $449

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The price cut means the base model of the Surface RT will be $349, a $150 price cut from the original price. Microsoft recently teased new Surface RT and Surface Pro tablets, which means this price drop for the current models could be an attempt to get rid of current stock in place for the new models later this year – READ MORE…


PhotoFiltre by Antonio Da Cruz

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PhotoFiltre 7 is a complete image retouching program. It allows you to do simple or advanced adjustments to an image and apply a vast range of filters on it. It is simple and intuitive to use, and has an easy learning curve. The toolbar, giving you access to the standard filters with just a few clicks, gives PhotoFiltre 7 a robust look. PhotoFiltre 7 also has layer manager (with Alpha channel), advanced brushes, batch module and lot of other powerful tools.


How to Setup Your Laptop with Tracking
Software in Case You Ever Lose It

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Prey offers tracking software for Windows, Mac, and even Linux PCs. Prey also offers tracking apps for Android and iOS, so you could use this one service to track all of your devices – READ MORE…


Microsoft Update Catalog website lets you download & save Microsoft Updates

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Microsoft Update Catalog is a service from Microsoft that provides a listing of software updates that can be distributed over a corporate network. – READ MORE…


Belkin Pivot-Plug Surge Protector

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As the demand for electricity to feed our hi-tech appetite increases, the likelihood of power interruptions and problems are also increasing. In addition to problems caused by the increasing severity of storms across the country, power experts are predicting that increasing power demand will soon put most major population centers at risk for severe power problems. As you know, power lulls and surges can severely damage your electronic equipment and even destroy your invaluable data – READ MORE…


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CloudOn brings Microsoft Office® to your Tablet Computer and Phone for FREE

Appears in today’s world of computing we are definitely moving away from the desktop form of computing to the more mobile form of computing, such as tablets and smartphones. In the end, no matter which direction we go, we still need to use the computer, whether it be in the form of desktop or tablet, to get our work done.

Working on a Microsoft Word, Excel or Powerpoint  file on a tablet vs. a desktop can be a real challenge. As we continue to move toward the tablet form of computing I am seeing more and more applications that are trying to emulate the desktop experience of using Word, Excel or Powerpoint on the tablet. As a matter of fact, I have many of these types of apps installed on my tablet and really in the end I am not using them to edit or create documents; instead, I use them more or less as a document viewers.

This past week I happened across another Android and iPad app, called CloudOn that really looks promising and is very close to emulating the desktop when it comes to creating, reviewing and editing your Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint files. Not only that, CloudOn can connect directly to your Box, Dropbox, Google Drive and SkyDrive Accounts; AND, the real topper is that CloudOn’s file viewer can view virtually any type of file (including PDF, JPG, PNG, GIF, etc.).

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So far, what I am experiencing, is a pretty darn good app that seems to have the right fine tuning in place for working with my Microsoft Office files; PLUS, CloudOn with its’ powerful viewing capabilities will replace many of the separate apps I have installed for those purposes.

The CloudOn Workspace allows you to:

• Use Microsoft Word®, Excel® and PowerPoint® on your Android Tablet and Phone to create, review and edit documents.
• Rename, delete and manage documents with your Dropbox, Box, Google Drive and SkyDrive accounts.
• View virtually any type of file, including: PDF, JPG, PNG, GIF, etc.
• Share files as links or attachments via email directly from the workspace.
• Display, edit or create charts, change formatting, spell check, insert comments, etc into any Word, Excel or PowerPoint files.
• Use the FileSpace to see a log of all the activity on file including edits, notifications and notes.
• Track changes while reviewing Word documents.
• Use pivot tables and insert formulas in Excel workbooks.
• Display and edit transitions in PowerPoint slides and present in full presentation mode.
• Open files directly from your device email accounts as well as Dropbox, Box, Google Drive and SkyDrive.
• Automatically save documents to avoid losing changes.

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Different uses for Internet Telephony

Robotic Warfare

A Search Engine that shows devices on the web

Portable Fold-Up Stand for Apple iPad, Galaxy Tab, Kindle Fire, Playbook, Xoom, Toshiba, Acer, Nook and Other Tablets

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Is The Microsoft Surface Pro Tablet Computer Going To Hold Up To The Competition?

The best description I can give for Microsoft Surface Pro is that it is a laptop in tablet form. It will run the same programs that you have been running with Windows 7; BUT, will this be enough to standup to the competition (the Android Tablets and iPad)?

Microsoft Surface Pro

I am a Windows user, always have been, but there is two things that is holding me back from the Surface Pro, and has me questioning Microsoft’s strategy:

  1. The price of $899+ is too salty for my pocketbook. For 899+ I can get a pretty decent Ultrabook with a touch screen. Granted the Surface Pro is comparable to the full Windows desktop and notebook computer experience that I have always been used to; however, after personally using and experiencing the simplicity of the Android Tablet (at a much lesser price), and the iPad, I cannot see existing home based computer users or the new generation of users (our kids and grandkids) going for Microsoft’s flavor of the tablet (Pro or RT Models).

    For example, I have two elderly friends of mine, one owning an Android Tablet and the other owning an iPad. Both have expressed how easy it was for them to use these devices in comparison to their Windows based computers. As a matter of fact, they are spending less time at the keyboard.

  2. The Surface Pro (best model) ships with a 128 GB of space and from what I am reading this space can drop dramatically to around 89 GBs with Windows 8, Microsoft Office and the built in Windows apps installed (click here). Also, I have noticed that many of the Windows Store apps can be quite large in file or install size compared to the typical apps installed on the Android OS and iOS (iPad) platforms.

I don’t want to sound too negative about Microsoft Surface, because I am a true Windows based user who has lived in the operating system for years; BUT, that has been my passion, my hobby, my life blood… Most people I know could care less about computers or Microsoft Windows. All they want is an easy computer (internet) experience and they want it at a reasonable cost; whether it is Android, iOS (iPad) or Microsoft. In other words, I am starting to realize that the writing may be on the wall and that myself, desktop computing and Microsoft is becoming old school pretty fast.

I would love to hear insight on this from the experts in the field and from the everyday computer user at home.  (see a related article here, called Rethinking Tablets, at TTC Shelbyville – a Tennessee Tech School).

Get the manufacturer specs on Microsoft Surface Pro – [ HERE ]

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Customer Reviews: See what other people are saying about Microsoft Surface Pro [CLICK HERE]

Product Features

i5 processor with Intel HD Graphics 4000
4GB Ram Dual Channel Memory
Windows 8 Pro
128 GB
10.6″ ClearType HD Display

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A Free Software Utility To Edit The Windows 8 Quick Access (WinX) Menu

Recently I posted the article, A Must Learn Windows 8 Tip: How To Get To The Quick Access Menu And To The Windows 8 Start Menu. In summary, this menu appears when you place your mouse pointer in the bottom right corner of the screen and when the the Start Screen thumbnail (or tip) pops up, right mouse click on the thumbnail and the Quick Access menu will appear. This menu serves as a convenient and quick launching point to the advanced system functions on your computer. This menu is also known in the Windows 8 environment, as the WinX menu.  If you hit the Win key on your keyboard plus X (Win + X), this menu will appear.

WinX Menu

The WinX menu, I have found to be quite convenient and began thinking it would be a real plus if I could add my own items to the WinX menu. I began researching this and found that there is a folder on your computer called WinX which holds shortcuts, in groups, to the program items you see on the menu. At first, I thought I could add or remove the shortcuts and found that they are basically locked in place by the operating system; so, that option was ruled out.

I then started thinking that someone out there probably has developed software that will allow you to edit the WinX menu and sure enough I found a FREE software utility called Win+X Menu Editor for Windows 8.

Win+X Menu Editor for Windows 8

With Win+X Menu Editor for Windows 8 you can edit the WinX menu without system files modification. You can rename, move items, add programs, add presets, add control panel items, create additional groups and remove items.

Win+X Menu Editor for Windows 8

This little program is portable, works on a 32bit or 64 bit system, and is by the same developer of a program I featured in an article yesterday, called SimpleSndVol .

GEEK BONUS AREA

BlackBerry Announces Z10 Smartphone –
Reveals Pricing and Availability

GEGeek  –  PC Tech Quick Reference

Crazyflie Nano quadcopter is a $173 open source,
programmable flying machine

HOT – Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 Garnet Red Edition Bundle
with Case  (7-Inch, Wi-Fi)

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A Must Have Cleaner App For Android Users

404 Tech Support, a member of the What’s On My PC blogroll, posted an article CCleaner-like app for Android that caught my attention; BUT, the real attention grabber in the article was one of the apps he recommended, called Clean Master.

I downloaded Clean Master and installed it on my Android smartphone (Sony Xperia X10) and installed it on my Android Tablet (Toshiba Thrive). Clean Master is an approximately 1.8 mb install that is worth its’ weight in gold.

Clean Master

After using Android for quite some time now and after installing (and uninstalling) numerous apps, I often wondered just how much data pollution was occurring on these devices. The term data pollution is a term I made up to describe leftover files and hidden files that you, the user, is totally unaware of.  These files on an Android device can include history files, cache files, residual files and the app packages (.apk files) that Android uses to install apps.

What I soon discovered, after installing and running Clean Master, is that the accumulation of these files can easily run into hundreds of megabytes. On my phone, which is an older powerhouse Android phone (Sony Xperia X10), space is precious to me.  After running Clean Master, I regained 35 MB’s of space. On my tablet (Toshiba Thrive), which I call my Android workhorse, I was able to reclaim nearly a gigabyte of space. I found Clean Master to be safe and did not alter or effect the operation of either of these devices.

404 Tech Support was correct in comparing Clean Master to CCleaner, the popular computer optimization and cleaning tool. This is a must have cleaner app for Android Users…

Key Features

History Eraser
Clean cache Files
Clean unused files
Manage and clean app packages
Remind unused files when app installed
Kill running tasks/release RAM

GEEK BONUS AREA

Infographic: Top 100 Technology Blogs to Follow in 2013
(and We are at 28th)

What Is The Facebook Email Address?

Encrypt the Data in Your Dropbox and Access it from any Smart Device [How To]

TurboTax Deluxe Federal + E-File + State 2012

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MediaFire App Now Available For Android

MediaFire is an online file storage and sharing service that most computer users at home are not familiar with. With MediaFire you are given 50GB’s of space (for FREE) with a 200 MB file upload size limit. Compared to the other online storage services (which typically offer much less FREE storage space), MediaFire is very generous in their offering. I have maintained an account with MediaFire for nearly 2 years and have never experienced an issue.

MediaFire

The complaint you will hear coming from people about MediaFire is that they will remove your account is your account is inactive. There is some truth to this; however, the rule is that if you must access the MediaFire API (your account) from either the Web, your Mobile platform or your desktop platform at least once per year and if you do that, your account will never be removed.  This is a pretty easy rule to follow; especially, that you are getting 50 GBs of online storage space.  If your account is in jeopardy you will receive sufficient notice via the email account you signed up with.

The one downfall to MediaFire, that I was experiencing, was no Android App available to access and manage my MediaFire files from my tablet. This has all changed within the past couple days (prior to the writing of this article).  MediaFire now has an Android mobile app available in the Google Play Store that can be downloaded to your Android phone or tablet.  You can get the MediaFire App [HERE] .

The MediaFire mobile app lets you access all your documents, photos, and videos from anywhere. Securely store, organize, and share all your data on the web and through your Android device.

MediaFire Mobile App

Features:

• Keep all your important files at your fingertips.
• View docs, spreadsheets, presentations, video, and listen to audio.
• Take and upload pictures and videos directly in the MediaFire app.
• Upload Android gallery images.
• Create and manage folders of files.
• Share files on the go via email, SMS, through other Android apps, and with copy and paste links.
• Quickly search all your MediaFire files and folders.

MediaFire Android App:  Requires Android OS 2.2 or higher

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An Android App That Feels Like TV

There are various ways to stream video to your android phone or tablet; BUT, there is none that I found that is like 9×9.tv

9x9.tv

From what I can see, based on the reviews at the Google Play Store, 9×9.tv is a relative newcomer to the Android platform. If you are into watching video streamed from the internet, then you need to download this app. The selection is awesome and what is neat about 9×9.tv is that it will continuously play videos. I was especially amazed at how good it looked on my tablet and how smooth the videos played.

Tune in at any time for a personalized bite-sized selection of channels with content that informs and entertains. For example, the “Morning Shows” time slot provides a channel line-up consisting of breaking news and morning talk show channels. “Late Night” on 9×9 features comedy and late night talk shows. So just sit back and let 9×9 entertain you with one episode after another non-stop. Turn on the excitement with every flip as you navigate the channels prepared for you by 9×9’s curators to discover Internet videos you never knew existed. Let 9×9 guide you through a personalized video tour of what matters to you every time you flip it on.

Got more than one Android device ? With one simple tap, beam the video playback from one Android screen to another and use the original Android device as a remote. Great for sharing YouTube and other content on a big screen TV connected to a Google TV. 9×9 app supports Android devices including smartphones, tablets and Google TV.

Once you make a video selection, there is a trick to moving from one video or channel to another (see below).

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FEATURED TECH PRODUCT

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Maxthon Cloud Browser for Windows

We all are familiar with web browsers, such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Opera, and Safari; however, much is not said about Maxthon. Currently, I have Maxthon loaded on my Android phone and tablet and I have found it to be the best mobile device web browser out there. I think if you give the mobile version of Maxthon a try, I think you will find that it closely replicates the same browsing experience that you experience on your desktop computer.

mx3DC

I just learned yesterday that the developers of Maxthon recently released a NEW desktop version of Maxthon, called Maxthon Cloud Browser. I noticed that they had a portable version of Maxthon Cloud Browser available for download, so I decided to give it a spin.

To be honest (and I am still testing this), I am very impressed. I don’t have anything available to test page loads, but I can tell you from experience, this is probably one of the fastest browsers I have ever experienced. Also, this browser is loaded with a ton of built-in features (such as screen gestures, a dial pad, dual page view, a resource sniffer, a screen capture utility, and more…).  I do have to admit, which is a fun thing for me, I had to do some exploring in order to find a lot of the features and how to turn things on and off (i.e. the sidebar).

What the main concept of Maxthon Cloud Browser is that Maxthon Cloud Browser is not limited to a single device ecosystem or operating system: It moves files, data and web session information from browser to browser, unconfined by a single set of cloud products or devices.

If you really want to try something NEW, download the portable version of Maxthon Cloud Browser and give it a try!  I think you may see that this Browser, not likely to break the backs of Firefox, Internet Explorer or Chrome; is a browser that may have a chance of coming out of nowhere.

Core Features:

  • Lightning fast speed – Maxthon Cloud uses an optimized web engine that loads webpages and runs applications faster than any other browsers.
  • Cloud syncing – Maxthon Cloud syncs user data, history and tabs across any platform their choice.
  • Cloud download – Simultaneous storage of user downloads in the cloud;
  • Cloud storage – You can create their own storage space in the cloud.
  • Cloud pushing – You can push content (webpages, text, pictures and links) from any webpage to any device running Maxthon Cloud.

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FREE Stunning First Person Zombie Shooter Arcade Game For Android

If have an Android device (tablet or smartphone) and you have had a bad week, then download Dead Trigger and take out your frustrations on some Zombies (and save the earth).

Dead Trigger

Dead Trigger (rated: High Maturity) is a first person shooter with stunning graphics, full 3D characters, high quality 3D audio, and intuitive controls.

Personally, I am not into the shooter games, but as far back as I can remember (in the Wolfenstein and Doom days), I have always been amazed by the 3D graphics of these type of games. As a matter of fact, these types of games will push your PC to the limits (in terms of memory, processing, audio and video power). What is amazing to me is that Dead Trigger is geared toward the Android OS based smartphone and tablet. From my testing, Dead Trigger ran smoothly on my tablet…

Enjoy the zombie slaughter in many different ways: blast ’em out of existence with lethal weapons, blow them up with powerful explosives or chop off their limbs and let them die slowly

  • Shoot away their heads, chop off their limbs… kill them with creativity
  • Evolving zombie AI will keep you entertained
  • Follow the story or enjoy unlimited random missions
  • Load your gun and save the Earth!
  • Equip yourself with splendid high-poly realistic weapons
  • Utilize powerful gadgets including a laser amputator, blade chopper, baits, mines, grenades, radar and more

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Wallpaper of the Week (#86)

You talk about a nice clean wallpaper…  This one is called The Storm.

To Get This Wallpaper [ CLICK HERE ]

image

Browse for wallpapers from previous weeks, [CLICK HERE]

Windows 7 Users: If you are using Windows 7, did you know you can create a desktop background slideshow to show off your pictures and wallpaper images?  To learn how to use this feature [ CLICK HERE ] .

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The NEW Kindle Fire

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Access SkyDrive From Any Android Smartphone And Tablet Running Android 2.3+ Or Later.

Folks, if you are looking for a nice, dependable and easy to use online file storing (and sharing) service, I am highly recommending Microsoft’s SkyDrive. With SkyDrive you will get 7 GBs of space for FREE and can opt in to purchasing additional space if need be. This service continues to get better and better all the time and has become my main online file storage service.  I encourage you to visit the link above to learn more about SkyDrive.

As this service continues to evolve, Microsoft recently made announcement that a SkyDrive app has been developed exclusively for Android 2.3 or later.

SkyDrive for Android

SkyDrive for Android

So, if you have an Android based phone or tablet AND you are a SkyDrive user, this app is a must-have app.  I have been testing it on my Toshiba Thrive Tablet and it has performed flawlessly. I even have SkyDrive setup to access the files (and drives) on my main PC anywhere I have internet access (see recent article, Access Any File You Need From Your PC From Anywhere With The NEW SkyDrive). This option alone is like having my main PC tethered to my tablet.

With SkyDrive for Android, you can now easily access and share files on the go. You can also upload photos or videos from your phone to SkyDrive.

• Access all of your SkyDrive content including files shared with you.
• View recently used documents.
• Choose multiple photos or videos to upload from your phone.
• Share your files and photos – send a link in email or in another app.
• Open your SkyDrive files in other Android apps.
• Manage your files – delete, or create new folders.

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Wirelessly Manage and Control Your Android Devices With AirDroid

imageI want to start this post by saying that “AirDroid is by far, one of the best Android apps I have experienced’ on my Toshiba Thrive Tablet”. I actually cannot believe that this Android app is FREE.

AirDroid gives you the ability to wirelessly manage your Android device (tablet or smartphone) from your desktop computer’s web browser, using your WiFi network (if you have one).

AirDroid

What I primarily use AirDroid for is to transfer files (such as music, movies, documents, photos, etc…) between my desktop computer and my Android based tablet (Toshiba Thrive). AirDroid, however, does not stop there and provides several utilities to monitor the device status and to manage processes, apps and SD card control. All of this is performed from within your favorite web browser on your computer.

When you make the connection between your computer and your Android device, a very attractive (and easy to use) AirDroid Web Desktop appears. AirDroid will (or should) work on any smartphone or tablet that is running Android 2.1 or later (4.0 is not well supported yet).

How to get started:

Download and install the AirDroid app on your Android devices [ HERE ], start the app and open your favorite web browser, input the address and Dynamic Password to login to the AirDroid Web Desktop.

Detailed steps:

Tips: The Android device and computer need to be connected to the same WiFi network to be able to connect. Don’t have WiFi? Try this tutorial

1.    Open AirDroid on your Android device and tap Start. The web address (looks like http://192.168.xxx.xxx:8888) to visit will be revealed, and a new Dynamic Password will be generated or the Predefined Password will be displayed (looks as predefined).

2.    Open your favorite web browser to visit the web address above. Enter the Dynamic Password or Predefined Password from the previous step and click Login.

3.    You’ll login to the AirDroid Web Desktop.

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CX.com Now Has An Android App Available

I have been watching for this… CX.com, a relative newcomer to online file storage and sharing, now has an Android app available that will get you to your CX.com files online. The app is still in the very basic stages of development and does not have any syncing or uploading features built into the app (yet). I do look for that to change.

What this all means at this point in time, is that if you use an Android OS based smartphone or tablet you can now access your CX.com files from those platforms. You can get the app at the Android Marketplace [ HERE ] or via your Android Smartphone or Tablet device. Once you install the app your device will alert you when any upgrades occur, just like any other Android installed app.

If you do not know what CX.com is; then read this recent article:

Get 10 GBs of FREE Online Storage
to Store, Share, Access Anytime, Anywhere

CX.com

Once you sign up for the FREE CX.com account, you will get 10 GBs of online space; and for every person you signup you will receive an additional 300 MBs of space (up to 16 GBs).  I am a CX.com user and I am nearing the 16 GB mark; however, I am still not quite there.  If you do signup with CX.com, please [ CLICK HERE ] .  This will help me reach the mark.

Take the potential 16 GBs of space from CX.com, plus 25 GBs that Microsoft has available for FREE [ SEE HERE ] and you will walkaway with over 40 GBs of online storage.  Not too shabby is it?

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Kindle Fire – Amazon’s $199 Android Tablet PC

When Amazon made the announcement that they were entering the tablet PC race with the Android based Kindle Fire, for $199, I was skeptical; however, after seeing the potential that this 7” tablet offers, Amazon may be onto something that could be a game changer. You can take a look at the Kindle Fire [CLICK HERE] and even pre-order one now [CLICK HERE]. The price is right, but will this tablet do everything you need it to do?

Kindle Fire

According to Amazon, the Kindle Fire will serve as a conduit to:

18 million movies, TV shows, songs, magazines, and books

Amazon Appstore – thousands of popular apps and games

Ultra-fast web browsing – Amazon Silk

Free cloud storage for all your Amazon content

Vibrant color touchscreen with extra-wide viewing angle

Fast, powerful dual-core processor

Amazon Prime members enjoy unlimited, instant streaming of over 10,000 popular movies and TV shows

Amazon Kindle–Official Presentation

Display
7″ multi-touch display with IPS (in-plane switching) technology and anti-reflective treatment, 1024 x 600 pixel resolution at 169 ppi, 16 million colors.

Size (in inches)
7.5″ x 4.7″ x 0.45″ (190 mm x 120 mm x 11.4 mm).

Weight
14.6 ounces (413 grams).

System Requirements
None, because it’s wireless and doesn’t require a computer.

On-device Storage
8GB internal. That’s enough for 80 apps, plus either 10 movies or 800 songs or 6,000 books.

Cloud Storage
Free cloud storage for all Amazon content

Battery Life
Up to 8 hours of continuous reading or 7.5 hours of video playback, with wireless off. Battery life will vary based on wireless usage, such as web browsing and downloading content.

Charge Time
Fully charges in approximately 4 hours via included U.S. power adapter. Also supports charging from your computer via USB.

Wi-Fi Connectivity
Supports public and private Wi-Fi networks or hotspots that use the 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, or 802.1X standard with support for WEP, WPA and WPA2 security using password authentication; does not support connecting to ad-hoc (or peer-to-peer) Wi-Fi networks.

USB Port
USB 2.0 (micro-B connector)

Audio
3.5 mm stereo audio jack, top-mounted stereo speakers.

Content Formats Supported
Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively, Audible (Audible Enhanced (AA, AAX)), DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, non-DRM AAC, MP3, MIDI, OGG, WAV, MP4, VP8.

Documentation
Quick Start Guide(included in box); Kindle User’s Guide (pre-installed on device)

Warranty and Service
1-year limited warranty and service included. Optional 2-year Extended Warranty available for U.S. customers sold separately. Use of Kindle is subject to the terms found here.

Included in the Box
Kindle Fire tablet, U.S. power adapter (supports 100-240V), and Quick Start Guide.

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[GEEK SQUEAKS’] – Malware Protection, DNA Damage, Remove OpenCloud, Good Internet Citizens, and Top Picks for Android Tablets

Microsoft Security Essentials
A comprehensive, state-of-the-art protection against malicious threats such as viruses, Trojans, spyware, and other malware.

Microsoft Security Essentials

Plato On-Line
Even DNA is Damaged by Stress

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and College Students Aware?

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[GEEK SQUEAKS’] – Drive Manager, YouTube Converter, Skype for iPad, Internet Safety, and the Toshiba Thrive Tablet

Geek Squeaks'

Drive Manager 4.14
See all your drives and their details at a glance.

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@ Carol’s Vault

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Geek Squeak Toy of the Day

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Toshiba Thrive 10.1-Inch 8 GB Android Tablet

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Digital Free-Hand Drawing Software (for FREE)

This past year I have seen numerous photo and graphic editors pop up from nowhere and most have been quite remarkable… If you are someone who has talent in the area of sketching, drawing or painting, then you will be interested in knowing that there is  “FREE” software package available, called “SmoothDraw”. SmoothDraw supports many kinds of brushes (pen, pencil, dry media, airbrush, bristle brush, image hose, etc.), retouch tools, layers, image adjustment, and many effects… According to the website SmoothDraw works great with tablets and Tablet PCs. I found it worked very well, using what limited talents I had, by just using the mouse.

The install appears to consume only 3.5 MBs of space; however, is dependent on .NET Framework 2.0, which is common on most of today’s systems. I personally found this app to be quite user friendly and could also serve some benefit to those who need something to enhance and touch up photos. SmoothDraw is a new one on me and appears to be quite a powerful application, considering its small size. I encourage you to click the screenshot below to get a good look at the clean interface of this application.

System Requirements
Win98, ME, 2000, XP, Vista

Recommend a tablet/stylus for drawing

[ CLICK FOR SCREENSHOT ]

Smooth Draw Sceenshot Sm

If you are a user of Universal Extractor, as I am, you can take the SmoothDraw install file (setup file) and extract it to any directory you desire.  Using this method, based on my testing, SmoothDraw can be made into a portable app (for your flash drive) and used on other computers that are supported by the .NET Framework 2.0.

[ DOWNLOAD “SmoothDraw” ]

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