Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Joshua from Nashville, TN Comments

Joshua owns and operates Minecraft servers and he wants to know what the future has in store for online gaming. Leo says that since Microsoft bought Minecraft, it's possible that Microsoft could require Minecraft be run from Azure. But Leo doesn't think there's much cause to worry because the Minecraft culture is very independent. Gamers won't really feel Microsoft's presence in Minecraft for at least a year, but there's not much cause for concern. Since online gaming is social by nature, the future is bright.

Watch Brian from St. Louis, MO Comments

Brian wound up getting a browser hijacker. Leo says that's the risk of downloading software these days -- it often will come bundled with other unwanted programs. Typically, during the install, there will be checkboxes for other programs which should be unchecked. It's not technically considered malware, but they were likely obscure in how it was worded and it tricks users into installing these programs. Leo strongly advises against using third party download sites like CNET's Download.com because of this. Only download software from the original developer.

To get rid of the offending program, Leo recommends going into the Control Panel and looking under "Programs & Features." He should also go into his Chrome browser, right click on "Extensions," select "Properties," and then look in the launch link under the shortcuts tab. There he can remove anything that's in the start page.

Watch Cassie from Crystal River, FL Comments

Cassie wants to know if putting her cell phone next to her credit card would demagnetize the credit card. Leo says that there probably isn't enough magnetic power in the cell phone to demagnetize a card. They're moving away from that technology anyway, so this won't even be a concern for too much longer.

Watch Shel from Martinez, CA Comments

Shel has designed a prosthetic hand that he wants to get out to developing nations, and his issue is actually finding people who need it. How can he use the internet to find people in need? Leo says that teaming up with organizations that are already in the country is likely more effective than doing Google searches.

Watch Dan from Calgary, CAN Comments

Dan's hard drive has failed and he needs to do a drive recovery. Leo says that the first step in drive recovery is to have a backup on hand. The next thing is to understand what caused the hard drive fail. It could be hardware, or it could be software. That's why relying on a professional is a better option than going the DIY route.

It could be a software issue that could be repaired by using SpinRite. It's about $90 from GRC.com. But it doesn't look at partitions or files, it just looks at the sectors and moves data off bad sectors. That could fix it, but he can also make a drive worse by trying to fix or recover it. So let a professional do it. Better yet, have a backup and then when a hard drive dies, he can just replace it.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jeff from Woodland Hills, CA Comments

Jeff just signed up for "TrueStream" broadband service. Leo says that it's a new system that likely uses fiber and is supposed to get up to 75 Mbps down. Jeff is concerned because the modem is installed right next to his Apple Airport Extreme. Leo says as long as he has some separation, and they're not touching, he'll be ok. He should also disable the Wi-Fi from the modem, and just use the Airport Extreme for DHCP and Wi-Fi.

Watch Diana from Whittier, CA Comments

Diana is finally replacing her XP machine with a new computer. But how does she transfer all her files to the new machine? Leo says that since Diana hasn't bought a new Windows machine yet, it may be a good idea to think about whether or not she really needs Windows. Often people buy far more computer than they need. And now that the industry has matured, Leo's more inclined to suggest a Chromebook and keep her data online, rather than Windows. Or maybe even a tablet, if most of her activity is email and surfing the internet. Leo gave his mom an iPad for that very reason. Both are steady, stable, and secure. And they're under $500. Leo recommends Acer, Asus, Lenovo, and HP.

If she's still set on getting Windows, she can still get Windows 7 until the end of this month. They have a transfer wizard that takes her data over. But Leo prefers to buy an external drive, and she can put all her data on that. Then copy it back onto the new computer. This will give her a backup of her data on that external drive as well.

LG makes a great Chrome machine called the Chromebase, which comes with a 21" LCD monitor for only $350.

Watch Tom from Warren, OH Comments

Tom likes that the M7 processor lets him track his steps. Leo says that's a great feature and all modern smartphones can now do it. These phones are as good and as bad as a Fitbit. There's limitations just like anything.

Is there anything decent for health tracking? Leo says that the dirty secret of fitness bands is that they're just pedometers. That's all. There's a lot of hype with them. But they do encourage people to take that extra step.

Watch Evangelina from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Evangelina's son wants a new computer for college. It will be used for studying music and medicine. Leo says that any digital device is fine for listening to music. But for medicine, there may be specific software that he needs which could decide which platform he needs. She should consider who will be giving support for the computer. Whatever the school uses also could point to what platform he should be on.

The good thing about a Mac is that it's very secure. For Windows, Leo likes Dell and Lenovo. She should get the Gold support plan if he'll need it. She should make sure they send the recovery disks, even if she has to pay extra for them. She's going to want to reinstall from time to time as well. What browser should he be using? Leo recommends Chrome.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Danielle from Malibu, CA Comments

Danielle upgraded her Mac to OS X Mavericks and now she can't open any Apple Works documents. Leo says that AppleWorks isn't supported anymore in Mavericks. What can she do?

Leo recommends before getting rid of the old computer, to open the documents and save them out as RTF. Then she can import them to Pages, which Mavericks will handle. Here's an article from Cult of Mac on how to do that.

There's also some scripts that could do it, and there's a forum conversation on Apple's website here.

Is there a utility that will batch convert them? Leo found a program called Panergy Doc X Converter that will convert them all. If Danielle doesn't like Pages, she could get a much simpler word processor like Byword, Nisus or WriteRoom.

Watch Benny from Pasadena, CA Comments

Benny wants to get a Blackberry Z10 because he used one for awhile and loved it. Leo says that they're easy to find on eBay, but Leo likes to get stuff like that from NewEgg. He can get one "open box" from them for around $200. He should make sure he doesn't get the Verizon version, he'll want the AT&T and T-Mobile versions that are unlocked. Those are called "Unlocked GSM."

Watch Benny from Pasadena, CA Comments

Benny would just use Google Docs and then store it in the cloud. Then he can work from computer to computer. It's a great way to do it, but some don't like that they have to use the cloud to save their data. But he'll have plenty of storage in the cloud. Prices start around $200-400. He can get them just about anywhere including the Google Play Store.

Watch Pat from Pam Beach, FL Comments

Pat has a Samsung Galaxy S5, and when he's streaming through Google Play, he gets random pauses. Leo says if it's streaming, that's bandwidth buffering. If it's local, there could be stuff in the background that's using the processor. Leo suggests turning the phone off and on, and maybe even doing a factory reset. But then he'll have to redownload all of his apps.. Google will remember his account information though.

The chatroom says that Google Play has the issue but others say not at all, so that leaves Leo to think that that it could be an issue with Pat's phone. Returning the phone and getting a new one might solve the problem.

Watch Paul from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Paul backed up his 16GB microSD card to his computer, and suddenly he's getting errors and can't see the card anymore. What can he use to recover the data and then back it up? Leo suggests PC Inspector to recover the card and then Helium to back it up.