You probably didn't notice, but this week, your searching activity on Google got a little safer from prying eyes. When you go to Google, it likely will transfer you automatically to its "encrypted" service, one designed to prevent potential "eavesdropping" on your searches. What's not to like with that? Chiefly, a loophole Google has left in for its advertisers and a lost opportunity to get all sites to go secure.
Earlier this year, I set out on a grand journey. I tested several activity trackers all at once, to decide which was the best in accuracy and in motivating me to lose a few pounds. Today, they sit unused on my desk. And I weigh pretty much the same.
What happened? For one, perhaps no one should try to use four activity trackers at the same time. Trying to stay on top of how they all compared ended up feeling like exercise itself.
But ultimately, I perhaps lost my motivation to be motivated by these devices by knowing too much … Read more
I'm fortunate to have several smartphones to choose from. For work reasons, I need to keep up with the Android, iOS, and Windows Phone platforms, as well as specific devices from particular makers. Usually, I take two with me when going out. But on the rare occasions that I take only one, it's the iPhone that's must-have. Must-have, that is, until the Samsung Galaxy S4 came along.
I didn't expect to like the Galaxy S4, when the review unit from Samsung arrived a few weeks ago. I never took to the Galaxy S3 when I tried … Read more
Flying back from a trip to the U.K. this week, I took advantage of the flight time to spend about six hours organizing my last year's worth of photos. I still have plenty left to do. But I don't want to. I want to give up. I'm drowning in pictures, and it's just getting worse. Would the answer be to declare "photo bankruptcy" and stop worrying about my photos being organized?
The growing temptation of Google+ I'm tempted, sorely tempted, to do this, with "photo bankruptcy" being something similar to … Read more
For $30, AT&T wants to give me a whopping 120MB of data when I'm traveling outside the U.S. Thanks, but no thanks, AT&T.
The same it true for any of the U.S. carriers, who want to charge a huge amount for their various "global" plans. Me, I go local and save.
Right now, I'm enjoying unlimited data, 300 minutes of talk time, and 3,000 text messages on my Nexus 4, as I travel through Britain. Cost? The same $30 AT&T would charge me for so little.
How'… Read more
A funny thing happened to me when I made a comparison chart this week listing what you can watch on Google's new Chromecast versus Apple TV and Roku. A few people asked why I didn't list the Xbox. The answer is that the Xbox is a different class of device, to me. And if I'm not thinking of it alongside streaming media devices, consumers might not, as well. That's an opportunity for Microsoft.
I love my Xbox for gaming. But I've also streamed Internet-based video content through my Xbox, just as I have through my … Read more
"When in the course of computing events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the bands that have connected them with particular programs."
Forgive my rewrite of the first line of the Declaration of Independence. But it's that time of year and appropriately, I've finally declared my own independence from my long-time allegiance with Microsoft Outlook.
I have been an Outlook user since 1997, and I still have the disc to prove it. I've continually stuck with Outlook, upgrading with each release. I admired how the program matured and improved over the years. It … Read more
Instagram has video now, a whole 15 seconds that can be recorded. That's just over twice as long as Vine's 6 seconds. "Too long?" some wonder. Maybe the bigger question is, how have we ended up in a place where there can even be a debate over whether a few seconds is too long?
TL;DR: "Too long; didn't read" Yes, the TL;DR world continues to grow. "TL;DR"? Too long; didn't read. I didn't even know the acronym until about a year ago, when I began seeing … Read more
If you're serious about tracking every calorie burned as accurately as possible, this makes the other trackers look like toys. But it's also the least comfortable to wear, and monthly subscription fees may also put some off.
BodyMedia sells two versions of the Fit. The "Core" version for $120 lacks Bluetooth and so can't talk directly to apps on your iPhone or Android device. The "Link" version sells for $150 and … Read more
My Verizon Galaxy Nexus is getting long in the tooth, as they say. Old. Sluggish. I bought it soon after it launched with Verizon in December 2011 because I wanted a "pure" Android experience on a network I felt had the best speed and coverage. Now I'm ready to replace it, but there's no alternative in sight.
Sure, Verizon has other Android phones I could buy. But those don't have a pure or "stock" experience, where the Android operating system hasn't had modifications made to it by the handset maker.
Pure Android … Read more