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More How-To

  • How-Tos: Six unexpected uses for the Application Switcher

    You’ve probably got the basics of the Application Switcher down pat by now: press Command-Tab to see a bar full of running-application icons and keep Command down as you tap the Tab key to quickly switch to the application of your choice. But, as with everything on the Mac, the Application Switcher can do more than you might guess.

  • How-Tos: How to secure a Google Android phone or tablet

    Whether you paid a small fortune for the hottest Android device or got it for ‘free’ with a modest contract, it’s a good bet that the data stored on your mobile is at least as valuable as the hardware itself. If your phone or tablet is ever lost or stolen, you’ll either be glad you took precautions to protect all your content, or you’ll sorely wish you had. In this article, we’ll walk you through setting up Android’s built-in security tools and suggest a few third-party extras that can add valuable safeguards for your personal information.

  • How-Tos: How to insure an iPad

    One of the biggest benefits of tablet PCs, such as Apple's iPad, is that are lightweight enough to be taken on the go. But with prices around £400, it'll be a costly mistake if you misplace, accidentally damage or are even unlucky enough to have your tablet PC stolen. This applies to any gadget for that matter, whether it's your digital camera or your smartphone. So, do you need iPad insurance? There are a number of ways to insure your gadgets giving yourself an extra layer of protection should you run into trouble.

  • How-Tos: How to block someone on Facebook

    With more than 500 million members, there's no doubt Facebook is one of the web's most popular social networks. But what happens if someone starts harassing you or causing problems from you on the site. Rather than remove yourself completely, you can in fact block the specific offender, so they are unable to contact you through the social network. Here's how.

  • How-Tos: How to make cheaper calls on an Android smartphone

    Why pay for voice minutes on your smartphone tariff when everything else is carried over the mobile data connection? It’s a good question, and the answer is you don’t have to, if you install one of the growing number of apps that lets you make calls using VoIP (voice over internet protocol). Calls to users of compatible services are free, subject to your data plan, and even those to phones get cheaper. We'll take a look at a UK-based option, Truphone.

  • How-Tos: How to tether an iPhone for free

    If you're internet goes down, then utilising your smartphone's 3G connection by connecting handset to your PC (a process known as tethering) is a great way to get back online.

  • How-Tos: Quickly delete iPhone photos from your Mac

    It's easy to take lots of photos with your iPhone. But when you're ready to wipe the slate clean—without wiping out other photos you've synced to your device—there's no obvious way to completely (or even selectively) use your Mac to delete the photographs you've taken with the phone.

  • How-Tos: Transfer files to and from an iPad

    It’s true that you can use your iPad instead of your Mac to take care of many common computing tasks. But unless you’re ready to ditch Mac OS X entirely, you’ll still need to transfer files back and forth between your iPad and your Mac if you’re going to get work done.

  • How-Tos: How to use a QR code

    You may have started to notice square, barcode-like boxes scattered throughout adverts, magazines and so forth. These are QR Codes, and they are only going to get more popular. Here's what QR Codes are, and how to use them.

  • How-Tos: Convert audio to other formats

    Audio files come in a number of different formats. Some are lossy, such as AAC and MP3; they save space compared to the original files, but some of the original data is lost during compression. Some formats are lossless, such as Apple Lossless, FLAC, and SHN; these files can be converted back to their original form without the loss of a single bit. Finally, some are uncompressed, such as WAV and AIFF; they represent the exact data from a CD or a master.

  • How-Tos: How to turn wireless connectivity on or off in Windows 7

    Want to connect your Windows PC or laptop to a Wi-Fi network but you're having problems? Try checking that wireless connectivity has been enabled on your device. Here's how.

  • How-Tos: How to get rid of error messages in Microsoft Outlook 2010

    Every time I launch Microsoft Outlook 2010 on my new Microsoft Windows 7 PC I get an error message reporting an invalid Office add-in. I've tried to accept the option to delete the add-in, but the error message still appears. The errors don't actually seem to affect the functionality of Outlook 2010, but it would be nice to get rid of them.

  • How-Tos: How to surf the web more quickly in Windows 2000

    I run Windows 2000 and Ubuntu on a dual-boot machine. In Ubuntu, using Firefox 3.0, my download speed is around 6 megabits per second (Mbps); in Windows 2000, it's just 0.9Mbps. The upload speed isn't affected, and I get about 0.7Mbps from both operating systems. I've checked these figures repeatedly over several days. I use the TalkTalk Essentials package and a wired connection. Can you offer a fix?

  • How-Tos: How to sync an iPhone or Google Android handset with Spotify

    Last week, Swedish music streaming service Spotify revealed it plans to rival Apple by giving all of its users the ability to manage the tracks stored on their iPods, iPhones and Google Android handsets.

  • How-Tos: How to sync your iPod with Spotify

    Last week, Swedish music streaming service Spotify revealed it plans to rival Apple by giving all of its users the ability to manage the tracks stored on their iPods.

  • How-Tos: Use AppleTV video caching for faster AirPlay viewing

    One of my favorite features of iOS 4.2 (and later) and the second-generation Apple TV is that if I've taken photos or video with my iPhone, I can use Apple's AirPlay technology to stream those bits of media directly from my iPhone to the Apple TV—I don't have to first sync the media to iTunes or iPhoto. This makes it easy to, for example, show my mother-in-law the video I took of my daughter's first "solo" bike ride at the park.

  • How-Tos: Create Free Custom Motivational Posters with Motivator

    You know those motivational posters you often see in offices, the ones with the signature black border and pithy sayings like, "Possibilities: Today the sidewalk, tomorrow the sky"? (You have to imagine a skateboarder catching some air in that one.)

  • How-Tos: Remove Windows Defender

    Windows Defender isn't in Control Panel's list of uninstallers. Spiritchaser asked the Answer Line forum how to remove it.

  • How-Tos: Smartphone Video Tips: Shooting, Editing, and Sharing

    A few decades ago, even a short, amateur film cost hundreds--or thousands--of dollars to make. And your friends couldn't see it unless you invited them over and set up the 16mm projector.

  • How-Tos: How to Install Ubuntu 11.04 'Natty Narwhal' With Wubi

    Ubuntu 11.04, or "Natty Narwhal," has been out just a few days, but already it's being billed as possibly the most accessible and user-friendly Linux distribution ever. With its new Unity interface, the open-source operating system mimics what many people are used to in the mobile arena to create a simple, intuitive way to get things done.


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