Did you know that Finley Stephens of Weston, Mo., lays claim to the largest ball of string (not twine) at 19 feet in diameter, weighing 3,712 pounds?
Could you imagine if we had newspapers that had items blacked out, censored by someone other than its editors?
Everyone has seen them. They are in newspapers and magazines and on websites. No, I'm not talking about celebrities or politicians. I refer you to Quick Response Codes. They are those two-dimensional square mazes of black lines and white spaces that you may have seen. For the longest time, I had no idea what they were.
Whether you celebrate Christmas, Kwanzaa or Hanukkah, chances are someone in your family is either giving or getting a computer for the holidays. Setting up a new computer, transferring data from an old one or adding new peripherals can be a daunting experience for anyone not comfortable with technology.
For the moment, let's say your hard drive is a block of Swiss cheese. If you could somehow relocate all of the holes to one corner of the block, then theoretically you'd be able store something where all the holes are, right?
As my cell phone contract is about to expire, I find many options before me. I can stay with my existing service provider and retain my current phone or I can try a new company. Either way, I'm eligible to get a free or discounted device with my promise to stay for 24 months.
When I began writing this column back in 2007, it was sporadic at best. My intent was to assist the novice computer user and not have it sound like a manual. I strayed from that format a few times by expressing my opinions while maligning Vista or praising Windows 7, and I've discussed technology in general many times.
Twice annually, I swap out the clothes in my closet. I tend to have a larger collection of shirts than most guys, since my wife owns a clothing store. To make room for sweaters, I need to pack away my tropical shirts.
Everything we use is getting smaller. We now hook our gadgets to our belts or put them in our pockets or purses. The bag cell phone of the early nineties is finally smaller than Captain Kirk's communicator.
Just because your computer is 4 or even 6 years old, it doesn't necessarily mean that you need to replace it. If you see more blue screens than desktops, or you still have an operating system from the last century, your computer is indubitably a candidate for replacement.
All too often, free programs aren't worth what you paid for them. Many are junk; some are only malware, not even real applications. Others come with bloatware attached to them, which leaves you wondering where that new desktop icon or browser toolbar came from.
Internet Web browsers get you where you're going online. But what if you don't know where you're going? It's like driving without a map or global positioning.
Computers are getting faster as prices drop. Facebook dominates the Internet and email scams from Nigeria and various mystery lotteries continue to fill my spam box.
Not all is what it seems when it comes to programs for your computer. There are so many rogue applications circulating the Internet now that one is sure to end up on your browser or in your inbox.
The last time we talked, I gave you some ideas on how to improve your computer system. Given the constraints of this page, I had more to say than I had room to write. So where did that leave us? Internet, RAM and back-ups are all covered, which brings us to programs. Most of us have too many of them installed. If your computer came with WordPerfect and you now have Office or your kids ...
My dad was into gadgets. He liked to be on the cutting edge of electronics. OK, this was the late 1960s so nothing was really small or cheap yet. But when pocket calculators initially arrived on the market, they were about three-quarters of an inch thick and about the size of a cellphone.
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