Dec 14, 2009

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Mikail hosted the show while Paul & Glenn are on the road and call in later

There is software for many platforms that reminds you to take a break from your computing. <Or you can just use a program that sounds an alarm periodically>

With newer UPS units there's usually a warranty as to how much it will protect and how much <money> you'll get back if it fails to protect your equipment from a electrical surge. Remember to keep your receipts. Home owner's or renter's insurance may also cover some damage.

Google is coming out with its own mobile phone, the Nexus One. It's manufactured by HTC and runs on the Android 2.1 operating system.
It runs on various hardware (like the new Droid smart phone) and takes advantage of the different Google services like maps. Android is compatible with both GSM and CDMA. The phone makers like the fact that Android is free so they don't have to pay royalty.
Android has a large part of the Linux operating system that's heavily tweaked to run on a limited platform.
There's some speculation that T-Mobile will be the first to offer the Google phone.

Paul recently got a netbook PC from Best Buy that has an LED display. Such a display helps get more battery life per charge.

Paul said, from his conversations with Apple personnel, that the Mac Book (vs. the Mac Book Pro) is coming to an end.

Mikail said it's rumored that Apple is coming out with a tablet computer in 2010.

The Mac Book Pro's battery is not user replaceable and there's is a $149 service charge to replace it.

Mac users can check their battery life if you go to 'about this Mac' under 'profile'. With Snow Leopard you can check other things like your wireless connection.
Paul mentioned that Snow Leopard only runs on Intel Macs (those with the Intel CPU).
Mikail said that Snow Leopard might not run some older applications, so check before you upgrade. But he recommended that people, if they can, upgrade to Leopard at least.

Mikail said he's heard, from local users, some good things about the Verizon <3G internet> service for about $50 or $60 per month.

Glenn finally got the Digital Path service he talked about on the last show. So, he now has high speed wireless internet. <His audio became distorted and I didn't hear all he had to say>

Thor called and said that, though he likes some things about the Droid phone, it just misses the mark for him.
– It's not easy to switch to use the phone when multitasking.
– The 3G coverage is not real good for him.
– You can't use the Verizon CDMA network to talk on the phone and also use the wireless connection, though you can do so using the wi-fi connection.
– He couldn't set the screen brightness low enough without a separate app.
– When he tethered it and tried to send a file via FTP, the file was corrupted.

A caller with a Dell laptop said his screen is cracked under the surface.
– You can replace the screen for about $100. Just go to Ebay. But, depending on the particular machine, it may involve a bit of work and you might break the laptop.
– You may plug in an external display. There are 19" & 24" displays for under $200. Check buy.com, frys.com or newegg.com. Go to amazon.com for reviews.

A caller has mp3 files that were converted to an iTunes format and he prefers them to be in the mp3 format.
– The settings in iTunes need to be changed from Apple's AAC. Under options select the setting 'create mp3 version'. But under 'preferences' and 'import settings' you can choose which converter to use. Mikail uses the mp3 setting at anywhere from 192 to 320.
– The current music from iTunes does not have copy protection.

The same caller wondered, if the music he bought from iTunes was lost, can he get new copies.
– Yes, if you have a current account at iTunes Apple has a record of your purchase and will be able to send you replacements.

A caller said his wife bought him a computer recently from Costco and that they automatically extended the warranty from 1 to 2 years.

A caller with a Mac Book Pro asked whether it's best to leave it on all the time and use the sleep mode, or is it best to turn it off.
– At least once a week restart the machine.
– Take it off the AC and let the battery run down at least once a month. That will recondition the battery. After the battery runs down, leave it off for 3 or 4 hours and then recharge (with the machine off).

A caller mentioned that, though Costco has a good return policy, the computers are covered for only 90 days.

He also asks that, if he buys a computer with Windows 7, will his XP software work on it.
– Some things will work, some not. Check before you buy.
– Though some programs will work, they may not be supported.

Last updated 8:31 PM 12/14/2009