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CalendarOctober 3, 2015

Panasonic ES-LF51 Electric Shaver Review

After seven years of shaving with the Panasonic ES8228, it was time for a new shaver. I decided on the Panasonic ES-LF51-A Arc4.

Panasonic ES-LF51 Electric Shaver

Before getting into the review, it's important to state my previous ES8228 shaver came with an automatic cleaning system. This is a euphemism for an "automatic way for companies to generate extra revenue" since the cleaning system requires you to buy overpriced cleaning cartridges on a regular basis. It also takes an hour of noisy operation to complete the cleaning process. Addtionally, the cleaning system makes the charging base unnecessarily large (see below).

Panasonic ES8228 Electric Shaver with Cleaning System

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CalendarSeptember 14, 2015

A Few Fixes for OS X 10.10

Earlier this year, I published an article about how Macs no longer just work. Yosemite in particular has had more bugs than any version of OS X than I can remember.

While Apple has fixed some of the early bugs, many of them persist. The good news is there are workarounds for several issues. I have discovered some on my own and have relied on the Internet community to find solutions for others. Since I have benefited from the knowledge of others, I feel a sense of obligation to post some of the fixes I have discovered.

I recently added two Help Center articles that address some of the most frustrating bugs I've encountered in OS X 10.10. They include:

I wish I would have posted these sooner since the fixes have made a big difference in my daily workflow. I'll try to post other fixes in the Help Center as I discover them.

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CalendarJuly 29, 2015

Microsoft Releases Windows 10

Microsoft Releases Windows 10Microsoft released Windows 10 today and I'm not sure how I feel.

Part of me is excited because it's a new version of Windows that brings back the Start Menu and adds several new features. Then there's part of me that says don't get your hopes up. I have been disappointed so many times with Microsoft's releases over the past few years, it's hard for me to be optimistic.

The good news is that Microsoft seems to have listened to their user community during the process of developing Windows 10. Along with bringing back (and even improving) the Start Menu, the new version of Windows is better suited for desktop computers and laptops. It includes a "Continuum" feature that automatically optimizes the user interface based on whether you are using a keyboard or touchscreen. The one-size fits all tile-based interface introduced with Windows 8.1 was clearly a flop and thankfully Microsoft made steps to correct it in Windows 10.

Other Windows features include Cortana, a built-in voice-controlled assistant, an integrated Xbox app, Groove – a new music app, and Companion Phone – an app that supports iPhone, Android, and Windows phones. It also includes Microsoft Edge, a new web browser that actually replaces Internet Explorer. I can almost hear the celebrations of web developers around the world.

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CalendarJune 26, 2015

Drop WWW

Drop WWWFor decades, most website URLs have started with "www." Why? There is actually no good reason.

Even Tim Berners-Lee, the man credited with creating the web, said that the widespread use of "www" was unintended. It was initially used to differentiate between websites and FTP locations, but even that wasn't necessary, since you can easily distinguish the two by looking for "http://" or "ftp://" at the beginning of the URL.

Early webmasters jumped on the "www" bandwagon and it soon became the default prefix for websites published on Apache servers. Before long, nearly all websites included "www" in their web addresses, which is why most URLs start with "www." today.

But that's changing. Many popular websites, such as Twitter, Mashable, and Instagram don't include "www" in their URLs. Neither does PC.net. Dropping www is becoming increasingly popular – especially for new websites. More and more existing websites are dropping www as well. That's why I created a website called Drop WWW.

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CalendarJune 11, 2015

Free Wi-Fi in Scotland

Free Wi-Fi in ScotlandMy latest trip took me to Scotland, where I visited Glasgow, Edinburgh, and the Highlands. While I was impressed by the vast landscapes, I was also surprised by how expansive free Wi-Fi was in Scotland.

When traveling abroad, I have two primary necessities — water and Wi-Fi. Water enables my basic survival, while Wi-Fi allows me to do everything else. An Internet connection gives me to the capability to map out where I'm going, find local restaurants, check public transportation schedules, and most importantly post updates on Facebook.

Of all the places I have visited recently — Sweden, Denmark, Greece, Turkey, and Japan — Scotland has the most widely-available free Wi-Fi. Nearly every hotel, restaurant, cafe, and pub offers a Wi-Fi signal. The connections are commonly password-protected, but the password is clearly displayed on a wall or menu. As a traveller in Scotland, you rarely need to search for Wi-Fi. A wireless router is almost always in range of your smartphone.

AT&T Passport

On a side note, I signed up for AT&T's new "Passport" plan before leaving for Scotland since I didn't know how easy it would be to get a Wi-Fi signal. It's a convenient $30 plan that provides 120MB of international roaming data, free unlimited text messages, and free access to Wi-Fi hotspots.

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- PC (Per Christensson)