Archive for April 2011

The White iPhone is Here! The White iPhone is Here!

imageIt been a long wait for some people who were expecting a white iPhone to arrive last June with the introduction of the iPhone 4.  And then the hope that maybe the Verizon version would be available in white at the February launch.  But no, those who long to be different, who want other people to know that they have the latest and greatest toy have had to suffer until now, as Apple announced two days ago that the white iPhone was now available.  Believe it or not there actually were long lines reported at the Manhattan Apple store.  I guess not surprisingly there are a LOT of black iPhone 4’s on eBay and they are still selling for around $450, so I guess if you’re willing to walk into an AT&T or Verizon store and cough up the big bucks to “upgrade” to the white iPhone, you can get a decent chuck of that money back selling your old one.

Do You Use the PlayStation Network? Change Your Credit Card!!!

Sony was hacked a week ago and have finally come out with the statement that they are pretty sure the hackers got your username, your password, your date of birth, your security questions (like your mother’s maiden name) and home address.  That is what they are SURE about.  What they are NOT SURE about is if the bad guys also got your credit card information, though they spent a LOT of time in their message telling you how to get a free credit report from each agency.

If you don’t care about your money or your privacy, then just do nothing and wait for the PlayStation to come back up onine.  If you DO care – and you should, then call the bank that you used with the PlayStation network and cancel that card and get a new one.  Also change your password to the PlayStation network once you get back online.  There will be lots of lawsuits against Sony for this, but don’t wait until bad things happen to you before you take action.

Deal – Lenovo 15.6” Laptop, $449 with Core i3

imageNewegg has the Lenovo ThinkPad Edge with a Core i3 processor for only $449 and $14 shipping.  It included 2GB of memory, a 250GB hard drive, DVD burner, LED backlit display, built-in webcam, 4 USB ports, an HDMI port, a flash card reader and my favorite feature, the pointing stick device within the keyboard (much more accurate than a touchpad – but it comes with the touchpad also.)

While this isn’t a high-power laptop, it does have the latest Intel Core series processor rather than the previous generation or even generation before that Intel chips not uncommon at this price.  This is a great machine for web, email, watching videos, Word, Excel, etc.  If you want to play the newest, more demanding games on the market, you’ll need to trade up, likewise if you’re hoping to edit next year’s Academy Award winning movie on it, but for everything else, this is great.  Here’s the link to the laptop on NewEgg:  http://bit.ly/TekChic0341

Where to Recycle Your Computer in Austin (and Much of the Country)

imageI often get asked where to recycle old computers and parts, and now I have a great answer.  Dell has teamed up with Goodwill Industries to create Dell Reconnect.  Now you can take your old computer and useless parts to your nearest Goodwill.  Goodwill Industries of Central Texas processes 250 tons of electronic waste EACH MONTH!  They also have a store in Austin where you can buy used computers, including some more eclectic and older computers (you just never know what may show up there.)

The best way to find your nearest Goodwill is to just go to the store locator on their web-site (http://bit.ly/TekChic0339).  To find out more about their Computer Works program in Austin, go here: (http://bit.ly/TekChic0340)

PLEASE Don’t Fall For This!

imageThis showed up in my spam folder a few minutes ago.  All I could say is “really?”  I hope all of you who pay attention to my rants here are by now smart enough to not even be tempted by this ploy.  My monthly article next month is going to be on the importance of protecting your email account, but for now, do your friends a favor and either “Like” this in Facebook or forward the link to this article to them in email so that they DON’T give this information away.

TuneIn Radio PRO is Free Today at Amazon

imageThree days ago I told you about TuneIn Radio, a great app for listening to radio stations, Internet radio and podcasts on your mobile device (click here to read my post.)  If you have an Android phone, you can get the PRO version for FREE today at the Amazon AppStore.  The PRO version lets you record and playback what you’re listening to.  So go to the Amazon AppStore on your Android phone and get TuneIn Radio PRO for free – it’s very cool.

Go Get a Library Book…. on Your Kindle

imageAmazon will be making it possible for you to go to the library and check out a book on your Kindle.  Actually, I don’t know if you’ll really have to GO to the library – you would think it would all be possible online, which makes you wonder how long will we continue to have library buildings with shelves of paper on them.

One thing this will let you do that you can’t (or certainly shouldn’t) do in a paper book is write notes inside.  You don’t get to keep the book but you’ll have your notes.  Here’s the Guardian article:  http://bit.ly/TekChic0336

Own Your Name on the Internet

imageRight now, your identity is probably at the mercy of your ISP (Internet service provider) in that you use them for your email.  Here in Austin you might be known as “BadUserName@Austin.RR.com” or “BadUserName@SBCGlobal.net”. Neither is very good and only lasts as long as you keep paying your ISP for the “privilege” of accessing the Internet through their wires (or cables.) 

Did you know that you can OWN your own email address for only $10 a year?   That’s right, you could be “ThisIsMe.com” for the rest of your life for $10 a year (ok, the price may go up in the future but I don’t have anything to do with it.)  You don’t have to be a business to own a domain, ANYONE can own a domain. 

Now, it take a little but of technical persitence, but if you’re patient and can read simple instructions, you can do this.  Google makes it really simple. 

It’s called “Google Apps”.  Though it gives you a lot more, let’s start by saying it give you up to 50 email addresses for free within your own domain.  A domain is the top level name used on the Internet.  For example, Google.com is a top-level domain.  No one else can own Google.com. 

Now let’s say your family name is Smith (trust me – it’s been taken), you might want to own “Smith.com”.  OK, so it’s been taken, try SmithFamily.com, or “The CrazySmithFamily.com”.  Use whatever you wish, but if it’s available you can OWN it for $10 a year.  So let’s say you now own “TheCrazySmithFamily.com” domain – now ANYTHING in front of the @ symbol is owned by you.  Google Apps gives you 50 free accounts in fronts of the @ symbol.  If your family is bigger than that, well then you need a professional helping you with your email. 

Using Google Apps gives you (when it comes to email) the advantages of the Gmail engine, the spam filtering and the ability to import from your OLD email address(es) like Yahoo.com or AOL.com or WHATEVER.com so over time you can get all your email sent to your old address WHILE you get them used to using your NEW email address.

You will NEVER have to change your email address again!  You will always be able to access your email on any computer by just logging on to your Google account.  If you use Outlook, Thunderbird or some other email client on your Windows desktop, you just set it up to go get your email from Google.  Mac mail works pretty much the same way.  It’s quick and easy. 

As for me, I use Time-Warner Cable for my Internet access.  Time-Warner Cable was kind enough to give me an email account.  I have NO IDEA what that is.  I OWN my domain Tek-Chic.com and all the email accounts within it (like Laurie@Tek-Chic.com) and if someday I want to change WHO provides me access to the Internet, I don’t have to worry about people sending email to me at a new address.

All this really is easy.  Contact me if you need help coming up with a unique name that hasn’t been used yet or just need help getting it all set up.  The great thing is that this is a one-time setup and you don’t have to bother with it again. 

You will LOVE owning your own domain and the freedom it give you – so go get it.  Follow this link to start setting your own domain name with Google: http://bit.ly/TekChic0335

This Desktop Deal Has Been Raised From the Dead.

imageSorry, it wasn’t meant to be a pun here with Easter approaching, OK, I know many of you checked this out only to find out that they had sold out.  Well, as of the time of this post they now have 43 available (when I wrote about this a few days ago they had over 200 before selling out.)

I won’t repeat why this is such a great deal, go read it here: http://bit.ly/TekChic0334

Even if You Don’t Know Where You’ve Been, Your iPhone Does (but do you want it to?)

imageWell, this may not bring a lot of joy to your heart if you’re an iPhone owner, but it’s been discovered that apparently your iPhone has been logging where you’ve been and when you were there, and when you sync with your computer the data is transferred to it – making it possible to reconstruct where you’ve been.

InfoWorld has a full article, read it if words like “location tracking” makes you nervous: http://bit.ly/TekChic0333

Over 50,000 Radio Stations and Live Internet Feeds – Free!

imageTuneIn Radio is a great free app for just about any mobile device you may have.  With it you can stream just about any local radio station, as well as live streams over the Internet.  I have a great stereo in my car but the AM radio is HORRIBLE – doesn’t even pick up the local Austin stations in a way that is listenable.  I open TuneIn Radio on my smartphone and  bingo – instant local radio nice and clear.  Is you favorite sports team in another city, there’s a good chance you can now listen to the games with your favorite announcer from that city.  I have a favorite tech network that I like to listen to (how do you think I keep up with all this stuff?) but I’ve tried 3 different apps including directly over the web browser and none of them work anywhere near as well as this one does in a moving car going from cell tower to cell tower.

You can find your favorites and save them so they are easy to find, and whether it’s music, talk or anything else on the radio you should be able to find it on TuneIn Radio.  TuneIn Radio works on Android, iPhone and iPad, Windows Phone 7, Blackberry and Palm.  It’s also available on the Roku box, Google TV and Yahoo TV.

White iPhone – Maybe This Time?

imageA new rumor is out today about the next iPhone, this picture was released showing what is being touted as the next operating system iOS 5 on a white iPhone.  It shows the phone running multiple apps at the same time.

Apple is one of the most secretive companies in the world when it comes to new tech products, so if you enjoy living in the world of Mac rumors, then there are LOTS of places you can go, but here’s a link to Slashgear’s site and video: http://bit.ly/TekChic0332

Been Dying for a Jailbreak? Here You Go You Apple Fans.

imageIf you have an iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPod Touch 3G or the iPad 1 (sorry, they’re still working on the iPhone 4 and iPad 2 jailbreak) and been wanting to do some of the things with your device that Apple won’t let you, like tethering your phone to a laptop, use apps stores other than the iTunes app store to get apps, maybe your contract is up with AT&T and you want to use your phone on T-Mobile (this also requires “unlocking” the phone and that hack isn’t quite ready yet.)  Whatever your reason, now you can jailbreak you device running iOS version 4.3.2.  Don’t be fooled by the name, jailbreaking isn’t illegal, it just frees you from the Apple “jail”.  It may void your warranty, but in most cases you can restore your phone back to original very easily and no one is the wiser.

Jailbreaking isn’t hard to do, but make sure you have a good reason to do it.  Step-by-step instructions can be found here:  http://bit.ly/TekChic0331

From the U.S. Congress–the iPad is Making Unemployment Worse.

imageWell, maybe not EVERYBODY in the U.S. Congress thinks this.  Representative Jesse Jackson Jr. from Illinois has come to the conclusion (after he himself BOUGHT an iPad) that the iPad is responsible for the closing of bookstores, and putting text book publishers out of business because schools want to move everything to digital.  The logical conclusion is that we need to read MORE on paper, which of course would also help the logging industry (I wonder if Rep. Jackson is in favor of that?)   We could have helped the logging industry 100 years ago even more by keeping the buggy-whip makers in business and not allowing cars to take over.  Let’s just end innovation and progress altogether so we can keep everything the same.  Here’s his rant on YouTube:  http://bit.ly/TekChic0330

Deal: Want to buy a new desktop? Wait no Longer!

This is the best deal I’ve run across in a long time.  If you have a 5 year old desktop and are even THINKING about replacing it – well think no longer, this is a no-brainer.

imageLenovo, the fine folks who bought the IBM PC division, are selling direct refurbished desktops at a GREAT price.  I don’t normally encourage buying refurbs unless they are coming from the original manufacturer with a FULL warranty.  Guess what?  This one does!

So check this out…. a desktop PC with Windows 7 that has an Intel Core i3 processor running at 3.2 GHz, a HUGE high-speed 1TB (that’s one terabyte or if you prefer, a thousand gigabytes) hard drive, 6GB of memory (in other words – a LOT), DVD burner, keyboard, mouse and a FULL 1-year warranty from Lenovo.

A laptop with these specs would probably cost you around $800 – $900 as a DEAL.  I assume you already have a monitor, but if you don’t there are lots of good deals to be had on 22” and larger monitors as well.

DEALS come and go, but one thing for sure, they NEVER last.  The deal I posted last week on the Dells is gone.  I think this is probably even a better deal than that.  Buy it or don’t – I don’t make anything on these, these are here for your benefit.  But this is a GREAT deal!  Get it here:  http://bit.ly/TekChic0329

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