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Episode 1104 July 27, 2014

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Richard from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Richard tried to take a still photo from an old DVD and he's having trouble doing it. Leo says that if he puts the DVD into his computer, he can use VLC Media Player to capture a still using the snapshot feature.

Watch Pete from Lomita, CA Comments

Pete has never owned a computer and he's thinking about getting a tablet. His vision is starting to fail, so he's wondering if he would be able to make the text bigger on it. Leo says tablets can have their print set for any size, so that's not an issue. Any electronic device will do that.

Pete is thinking about the 12” Samsung Galaxy Tab. Leo says that's a bit big. Just because the tablet is a bigger size, won't mean the things on it will be larger -- he'd just have more screen real estate. Kindle's reader also would let him change not only the size of the font, but also the background color. The iPad is a better choice than Android for most people.

Any chance that Apple will be making a larger tablet? Leo says the rumor is that Apple is going to release an iPad Pro, which would be bigger. So if he can wait a few months until they announce their new line, he should. But he really doesn't have to wait.

Pete wants to know if there's a book he could get to help him learn about them. Leo says that the iPad is surprisingly straight forward, and it doesn't even come with a handbook. It's very intuitive. He should keep in mind that he'll need internet access to use it, either Wi-Fi or 4G. Either way, he'll have to pay a monthly data fee. Some tablets offer free monthly internet access for life, but it's only 200MB a month. AT&T offers 2 GB a month minimum, and thats a good place to start.

Watch Louis from Hollywood, CA Comments

Louis says that cookies or tokens are a violation of privacy. Leo says they're pretty benign, though. The cookie only exists to allow him to keep from logging in to a site every time he visits. It reads the token and knows who he is. He could turn them off or prevent third party cookies. The browser leaks enough information about him to identify him, though. He could surf privately and delete all of his cookies, but even with all that, his ISP knows everything he does online. So if he really wants to be anonymous, he'd have to pretty much give up being online.

Watch Don from Mission Viejo, CA Comments

Don wants to create a video montage of testimonials that are high quality, but not intrusive. Leo says having them use the best camera they have or sending them a camera guarantees that the quality will be the best and consistent. Oprah, for instance, has a “Skype kit” which they send ahead of time to those they interview on Skype. Leo suggests the Canon Vixia, the Lowell Ego lights, and a tripod. Written instructions, and all into a Pelican case. The whole kit wouldn't be more than $1500. He can also hire a local videographer to produce it for him for a nominal freelance fee.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jay from Riverside, CA Comments

Jay wants to know if there's a Kelly Blue Book for computers? Leo says no. Computer values disappear rapidly because there's no real resale market. There are so many different PCs, that it would be a very large book if there were one.

One way to determine what a computer is worth is to search eBay's listings. That's a good way to see how much people are paying for it. Jay shouldn't buy a used computer, though. It's a false economy to get a used one. He's just buying someone else's problems. If he wants to save some money, he should get a factory direct refurbished computer.

Watch Mike from Riverside, CA Comments

Mike is thinking of getting his employees tablets rather than computers. Is that a good idea? Leo says that the Cloud is making it very easy to use just about any computer to do work because all the software is now going online. So what it comes down to is what tablet will work best for his business, and Leo says that Android tablets are very good.

Watch Chris from Miami, FL Comments

Chris wants to get his mom an internet radio, but his mom is resistant. Leo says that radio is alive and well, but the cool thing about internet radio is that she could listen to a station from anywhere in the world. Most stations have live streaming online, but she'll need internet access to do it.

Leo says why not just get her a tablet? She can use it to listen to internet radio if she wants, but she can also use it for email, browsing, and more. Leo gave his mother a Samsung Galaxy Note 2. A 5GB plan is $30 a month from T-Mobile. Many offer a free 200MB a month, and some have Stitcher unlimited. Check out T-Mobile. They're very aggressive. The chatroom suggests Podlinez, which works on any phone, but it works through a regular phone call. So it would use her minutes.

Watch Mike from On the Road Comments

Driver Mike has a Toshiba Laptop and now he can't get online after reinstalling Windows. Leo says that when he reinstalled it, he likely wiped out all the settings. So he'll have to go to his ISP and get them back and reinstall them.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch David from Rancho Cucamonga, CA Comments

David's cable service went out, so he got the cable company to come out and fix it. Now they're suddenly requiring every single TV have its own set-top box, and they'll charge $7 a month for each one. Leo says that when we went digital several years ago, the federal government opened the door for this kind of shake down.

He's thinking about doing a Network based system for his TVs. Leo says he can get an Mcard from the cable company and then plug that into the TIVO Roamio. The cable company has to provide it by law. The Roamio can then push that signal out over Wi-Fi to his TVs that are enabled to receive it. Just remember though, if everyone is watching different TVs, he'll end up overloading the bandwidth and it'll slow down to a crawl. But it's a far better option than renting cable boxes for each TV.

Watch Azar from Irvine, CA Comments

Azar is an IT administrator and he's looking at getting a tablet for work. He has a Nexus 5 phone. Leo says that a Nexus 7 is a great companion for that. Azar says he can get a refurbished one for $100. Leo advises not doing that. It's likely the first generation and they had issues. Get the new version. It's worth spending the money on.

What about the Dell Venue Windows Tablet? Leo says the advantage to that is Microsoft Office. But if he can do everything he needs with the Android, why not?

Can it multi-task? Leo says whatever he can do on his phone, he can do on that tablet. Leo also says humans don't really do multi-tasking. They “time slice.” Maybe 15% of people have true multi-tasking capability. The rest who think they can, end up doing poorly at all tasks.

Watch Tom from Azusa, CA Comments

Tom hasn't had a cellphone in a few years and he's looking at getting the Samsung Galaxy S5. He also sees that it's waterproof. Is that true? Leo says no, it's not water "proof". It's water resistant.

Tom is wondering if an LG G3 would be a better choice because it has a higher resolution screen. Leo says that resolution isn't as important as what carrier he's on and what he's doing with it. Most phones have great resolution these days and if he already can't see the pixels, then more resolution isn't going to make a difference. In most areas of the country, Verizon and AT&T are equal. T-Mobile is a good alternative. But he shouldn't pick the phone until he decides on the carrier. Then comes the choice of Apple, Android and Windows.

Leo says that Windows Phones are great first time smartphones, but he'll grow out of it pretty fast. Apple's iPhone is really a better choice because it has a great eco system. Samsung spends billions in advertising and that's largely why there's more Android phones, but that doesn't mean they're better. The Motorola Moto X, the HTC One, and the LG G3 are better Android phones.

If Tom will be using it for watching videos, the best sound is the HTC One with it's dual front facing speakers and gorgeous screen. And having a phone that allows him to swap out batteries is a nice, handy feature. Samsung has that capability. The LG G3 is a nice phone, but the buttons in the back are odd.

Best battery life? The Droid Maxx has the most battery life. The HTC One has about 16 hours on a single charge. Leo's holding out for Motorola Moto X+1, the follow up to the MotoX, which had a poor camera and a rather low resolution screen. But with Lenovo buying Motorola, look for it to go up in quality.

The chatroom says that Consumer Reports calls the Galaxy S5 the best, but Leo doesn't think so. Maybe spec-wise, but he says the interface is pretty lousy.

Watch Samson from Chatsworth, CA Comments

Samson wants to make a YouTube Channel for gaming. Leo says that at 14, he can actually run his own channel without parental approval (although he should have approval). He wants to do Minecraft videos. Leo says that Minecraft is a very crowded field for play along, and it's very popular. So much so that YouTube bought Twitch, which is used for that reason. Gameplay is the hottest category and PewDiePie is one of the biggest players. He's making a ton of money doing it. So it comes down to this – why does Samson want to do it? Samson says it looks fun. It really comes down to what games he likes. And there's also a good comedy component to them.

Where can Samson get cheap, but good green screen equipment? He could just use any solid color sheet, it doesn't have to be green. Then he should stretch it out and evenly light it. He'll want the color to be one he won't ever wear or have in his eyes. Florescent green is a good choice because of that.

For lighting, he should use two sets of lights. One for him and one for the green screen. He should diffuse the light so it isn't a harsh spotlight on him. Then he can use chromakey software to overlay the background and key out the green. He'll have to spend some time playing around with it, and he'll get better as he goes along. There's a great green screen kit on Amazon for about $60, which should include everything he needs.