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CalendarSeptember 1, 2023

September Tip: Check Your Internet Speed

Check Your Internet SpeedHow fast is your Internet connection?

Not the speed listed in your ISP agreement... your actual speed. When was the last time you checked?

Your Internet service provider may offer specific download and upload speeds, but that doesn't mean those are the numbers you're getting. Several factors can affect your actual data transfer rate, including Wi-Fi limitations, local network bandwidth (several devices using the Internet at once), router/modem problems, and issues with the connection to your ISP.

CalendarAugust 1, 2023

August Tip: Regularly Restart Your Computer

Regularly Restart Your ComputerThe classic "restart your computer" advice might be the oldest tip in the book. A simple power cycle fixes a wide variety of problems. But restarting your computer can be helpful even if nothing is going wrong.

When you restart your computer, it stops all CPU processes and completely clears the RAM. The reset terminates any lingering CPU threads and frees up the maximum amount of memory. Notably, it clears memory that previously-closed applications may not have released.

Regardless of your PC's specs or age, an occasional restart is a good idea. Even my iMac Pro with 64 GB of RAM often performs better after a restart.

CalendarJuly 1, 2023

July Tip: Scan Your Documents and Receipts

Scan Your Documents and ReceiptsSeveral years ago, I recommended going paperless. Electronic documents don't just reduce waste; they are easier to organize and search. But not all companies provide electronic statements and receipts.

The solution? A scanner.

People often correlate scanners with an office workspace. But they are just as useful at home. I've been using the ScanSnap ix100 scanner for nearly seven years, and it has noticeably reduced clutter. On multiple occasions, I've searched my past scans and found a specific document or receipt I need.

CalendarJune 6, 2023

Will Apple Succeed with Virtual Reality?

Will Apple Succeed with Virtual Reality?Apple just announced Vision Pro, a thoughtfully-designed mixed-reality headset with incredible computing technology. It creates virtual experiences that are more lifelike than ever before. But will it be a successful product? I don't think so.

The past is littered with companies that have failed at making virtual reality mainstream.

In 2016, I wrote an article titled "3 Reasons Why Virtual Reality Will Fail." I think the three reasons still apply today:

CalendarJune 1, 2023

June Tip: Try a Hard Mouse Mat

Try a Hard Mouse MatMouse pads have been around as long as mice. And like the input devices, mousing surfaces have evolved over time. While the grey foam rectangle from Office Depot still works, better options are available.

Early mice used a rollerball, which required a certain amount of friction to roll properly. But several decades ago, the rollerballs were replaced with light beams, removing the need for a high-friction surface. You can now use a hard surface, which allows you to move your mouse more quickly and accurately.

Most gamers prefer hard mouse pads (or "mouse mats" as they are often called now) because they improve the speed and precision of each movement. But they aren't reserved for gamers. Basic hard mouse mats sell for around $10. If you want a high-end gaming version with RGB lighting (like the Razer Atlas shown below), it might run you closer to $100.

CalendarMay 1, 2023

May Tip: Use a Mouse Wrist Rest

Use a Mouse Wrist RestA lot of people use wrist rests for their keyboards — and rightfully so. They reduce wrist strain and provide a more ergonomic typing position. But surprisingly few people use a wrist rest for their mouse.

If you're "mousing" with incorrect wrist position, it won't be long before you feel the adverse effects. A sharp bend in your wrist can lead to wrist pain and carpal tunnel syndrome. Fortunately, the problem is easily preventable with a mouse wrist rest.

You can choose between two types of mouse wrist rests: a standalone pad or a mouse pad with a wrist rest built in. Either option is fine. The important thing is to choose one that feels comfortable and works with your setup. For example, a standalone pad is best if you already have a mouse pad you like, or if you use a mouse mat that covers your desk. A mouse pad with a built-in wrist rest is ideal if you prefer a simple all-in-one solution.

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- PC (Per Christensson)