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Episode 1431 October 15, 2017

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Carl from Goodland, IN Comments

Carl has a 2012 MacBook Pro Retina, and now when he connects it to his Vizio, he's noticed that the screen isn't as clear. The fonts are fuzzy and the image quality varies from app to app. Leo says that it could be that the native resolution of his Vizio screen may not be one that his MacBook understands and therefore, it runs the default resolution, which is generally half the native resolution of the screen. He'll need to figure out what the native resolution of the screen is, divide it by two and choose the best option based on that. Could updating to El Capitan also be a factor? Leo says probably not.

Scooter X says that running the app SwitchResX will help him determine which resolution is optimal for his monitor.

Watch Jerry from Pennsylvania Comments

Jerry used to be able to listen to Leo's show on his phone, but he hasn't been able to lately. Leo says that there are dozens of ways to listen to the show and he recommends iHeartRadio to do so. What's happened is that many radio stations have opted not to provide their own streams due to cost. They are more in favor of having it stream from a central app, which is iHeartRadio. Jerry can also listen through TWIT.tv.

Watch Gary from Buffalo, NY Comments

Gary got an Insignia HDTV, but it won't let him directly enter channels on the remote. Leo says that at under $200, it's likely that the TV doesn't have direct channel entry on the remote control and it was done to cut costs by reducing features. It may not even have a tuner. He would need to use his cable or streaming box that has a tuner built-in that could do that.

Watch George from Victor, MT Comments

George has an iPhone 7 and he keeps getting asked to update iOS 11. His wife doesn't want to upgrade due to battery life issues. Leo says that he has iOS 11 and it runs just fine. A certain percentage may run into problems, even 1/10th of 1% would still be thousands. That's just the nature of the business. George doesn't know how to stop the notifications of iOS 11 other than to just ignore it. Once he upgrades, he can't go back. That's why the conventional wisdom is to wait a few weeks on updates, because there will be patches coming out in short order.

From the Chatroom - Go to Settings > General > Storage > Manage Storage. He's getting the notification because the phone has already downloaded the update. If he deletes the update, the notifications will stop until it downloads again.

He also doesn't like being bugged by Facebook. Leo says he can turn off notifications in Facebook's user settings under notifications. There's email, text and popup notifications. He can just turn them all off. He should go to Facebook on his terms, not theirs.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Jack from St. Cloud, FL Comments

Jack is learning computer animation with Blender and wants to know what other computer software he can learn to do animation with. Leo says that Blender is a great power tool to get started on, but it's hard to use. A great place to learn more is UDEMY. It's on sale for $10 for a limited time, and there is a complete Blender course. Taking that can help give him tips and tricks to make using Blender a lot easier. Once he's mastered that, he can create a reel and send it to Pixar asking for an internship or even a job.

Watch Scott from Orange County, CA Comments

Scott was in a big box store with a listening room and listened to a Dolby Atmos at Home demo and he was blown away. But is it worth thousands to outfit his home theater with it? Leo says no. Many modern AV Receivers now support Atmos. It's a standard like Dolby 5.1 was. The main difference is that Atmos at Home bounces sound off the ceiling for a more immersive audio experience. Leo says he can use dual HDMI outputs that would give him the ability to create a similar experience. Leo isn't sure that he needs that. It sounds like a lot of gimmickry. But with some top firing speakers and a modern AV receiver, he could come pretty close.

Watch Jay from Providence, NC Comments

Jay's HP is having issues and the recovery drive doesn't seem to fix it. Leo says that he should get his own 16GB USB key and create a recovery drive of his own using Windows Media Creation Tool. He'll also have the benefit of creating a clean install with no trial ware. He may have to also download specific drivers for his device, and HP may have a create media tool of their own.

Watch Chris from Ohio Comments

Chris needs an app to create a live stream on a budget. Leo just saw a great tool on both Android and iOS that uses camera phones and Wi-Fi to connect and then uses one device to act as a switcher. He should check out Switcher Studio. It does just that, but it's currently iOS only. Cinemaker is another one. It also is just for iOS, but the Android version is coming soon. Chris could also look into Manycam.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Alan from Michigan Comments

Alan's wife works for a non profit for helping the disabled and wants to know what technology should be in the houses they build. Leo says that Wi-Fi internet is a given, as is cable television. Cutting the cable is attractive, but Leo says that connected TV is still the best option to date. He should run conduit in the walls and just switch out the cables as technology evolves. YouTube TV would be good if they can get it. Also, voice activated devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home would be a lot of help. The Amazon Echo Show would be great for video.

Watch Paul from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Paul's dad wants to record the TV shows he gets over-the-air. Can he do that? Leo says the ChannelMaster is very popular for that, as is the Silicon Dust HD HomeRun. Even TIVO has an OTA option, though he would need a subscription to the cable guide for that.

Watch Paul from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Paul is wondering if he can get a machine that could filter out robocalls. Leo says that Google Voice is the best digital option. He would have to use a different number though, or pay a small $10 to $20 fee to have his current number ported over to it. The benefit, though, is that he will get a bunch of new features including call screening, forwarding and more.

Another service is NoMoRobo.com. Calls go through their service and RoboCalls don't make it through. A hardware solution is the Call Blocker CPR V5000, with a big red button that says "Block Now." It'll block up to 6500 numbers, including known spam numbers and area codes. It's $90 on Amazon, and works for landlines. Digitone is another option for $80.

Watch Mike from Fountain, CO Comments

Mike says that Blu-ray players have dual HDMI ports because some legacy receivers don't support the higher bit rate HDMI 2.0a standard. So you can plug into the older HDMI port instead. But then you lose 4K capability.

Watch Saren from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Saren hasn't been receiving the two factor authentication code he normally gets for his Gmail account. He would normally get it through his Google Voice number. Leo says it's insecure to send those two factor codes through SMS, because someone could spoof his number and get the text message. Google may have even stopped supporting SMS in favor of its Google Authenticator app.

Watch Victor from Carlsbad, CA Comments

Victor's iPad has stopped working for streaming. It says the audio stream isn't available. Leo says that his old iPad has an OS that may not support the current standard anymore. iHeartRadio was probably updated and it simply no longer will work with it. What can he do with it? Leo says that's the sad part about planned obsolescence. Technology that is perfectly good, but times have passed them by. Leo doesn't like it either.

Leo says to delete iHeartRadio from the iPad and try to re-download it from the App store. It may download the latest version supported by his tablet and keep it running.

Image By matt buchanan (originally posted to Flickr as Apple iPad Event) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons