If you've never used CCleaner or a similar tool before, then chances are your computer is running slowly, displays errors every so often, and has much less free space than you'd expect (for those of you who just got your computers recently, that's cheating). CCleaner is a tool for Windows that can remove clutter from your PC, such as temporary Internet files and cookies. The problem is, you have to remember to run the cleaner regularly to really benefit from it. If this sounds like a problem for you, just follow these eleven steps to automate the … Read more
If you've ever copied and pasted text from a Skype call or conversation, you've probably noticed that Skype adds a time stamp and some quotation texts to whatever it is you copied. This can be handy for showing someone else exactly who said something and when, but it becomes rather tedious when copying a string to be entered into, say, a search box. If this bothers you, then you're in luck. This additional information is completely optional (albeit on by default) and can be easily disabled from within Skype. Read on to learn how.
Step 1: Open … Read more
Windows Update makes it dead simple to keep your basic system up-to-date, but this can lead to laziness or forgetfulness when it comes to other software.
Many popular programs, like Web browsers, check themselves pretty often, but others may not do so or may need to be told to do so. FileREX is a small, free program that checks your system for software that needs updating.
Download and install FileREX. It should run automatically when you complete the installation and let you know if you've got any programs that need updates. Click the pop-up bubble or double-click the orange … Read more
Can't afford a 1TB drive, but you've got two 500GB drives just lying around? Windows can combine them.
The Windows XP/Vista/7 feature is called spanning, and it can extend the usefulness of older, smaller hard disks. Here's how to create a spanned volume:
Step 1: Go to Start, then type "diskmgmt.msc" in the search box. This will launch the Windows disk management tool. Make sure that the disks you want to combine, are unformatted and don't contain any partitions. In our example, we're going to combine Disk 1 (298.09GB) … Read more
Microsoft's PowerPoint presentation software is to some degree an industry standard, and its presence on both Windows and OS X allows for a decent level of cross-platform compatibility that new Mac users might gravitate toward; however, there are other options besides Office that might perform as well as if not better than PowerPoint, which you might wish to consider.
As I mentioned in a previous post on Apple's alternative to Excel called Numbers, there are a few Office programs out there that have good offerings and which can import and export PowerPoint file formats. These include the free … Read more
Make no mistake, software updates are important.
Updates can occur for many reasons: new features being added, fixing bugs, or, most importantly, patching security flaws.
Sometimes it's irritating getting notified of updates to programs when you're working or playing a game, and it isn't uncommon for automatic updating to lack a disable button. If you find yourself annoyed with update notifications that you can't disable, there's a way to get around that.
Step 1: Open the Windows Start Menu and enter Task Scheduler in the search box. Run the Task Scheduler program from the list … Read more
Nothing says "I love you" like a DIY gift for your tech-loving partner.
Valentine's Day is on the horizon, and if your partner could be classed as the type who downloads too many apps, chooses social networking over face-to-face contact, and says things like "Duh" when you mention a new gadget, look no further than here.
While the rest of America is purchasing bouquets of roses and See's candies, take a stab at these easy, one-hour (or less) projects that any technology-loving guy or gal would appreciate.
Take it from a geek girl: these gifts will likely make your partner geek the heck out.… Read more
Forget the flowers this Valentine's Day. Go for a lightsaber-lit dinner, the open-source iNecklace, and the flirtatious Fingle app. Bridget Carey shows off tech to woo the nerd of your dreams.… Read more
Back in the day, CDs burned with custom playlists were the ultimate last-minute gifts: thoughtful, unique, and took just enough effort to warrant a "Wow, I can't believe you made this for me!"
For the most part, those days are over, but if you have a USB drive laying around, you can give a gift that might be even better than a burned CD: a customized USB hard drive. Not only can you pack it with a variety of goodies (like hand-picked music and photos), the gift recipient will use the USB drive over and over again … Read more
Skip Tunes is a 99-cent app that puts a convenient control in your Mac's menu bar for controlling music in iTunes, Spotify, and Rdio.
When I'm working, I'm often listening to music. And when I'm working, I can get very lazy focused, to the point where opening iTunes or Spotify to find out the name of a song I don't recognize feels like an arduous chore. (In my defense, iTunes can be slow to appear from its hidden state.) Because of this, I found the 99 cents I spent on Skip Tunes in the Mac App Store to be money well spent.… Read more