Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Are you going to Maker Faire?

Doctor Mom from New York, NY

Episode 1117

Doctor Mom wants to plug the New York World Maker Faire, which is a gathering for people who love to make stuff. And Doctor Mom is there teaching. It's at the Hall of Science right behind Shea Stadium. Leo says that Maker Faire is a great event and Make Magazine gave birth to it. And Radio Shack is sponsoring it and that would be a good thing to keep them open if they harnassed the maker movement.

What computer should I buy for preschool?

Heather from Denver, CO

Episode 1117

Heather's preschool and buy a bulk deal on computers and she wants to know what's best. Leo says that Google's Chromebook may be the best option. All it has is a browser, and you use extensions that are online. But if you have dedicated software, then that's not going to work. What brand computers? HP, Dell or Apple? Leo says that Apple is a better choice because there's no real issue with security and you can actually run Windows on it if you need to. But they're twice as expensive as a garden variety Windows machine. Still, it's a better option.

Is Amazon a good place to buy backup cameras for cars?

Episode 1116

Dave from Chatsworth, CA
Esky Backup Rear View Camera System

Dave wants to get a backup camera that has infrared and 180 degree scope. He's seen them on Amazon for $250 down to $39. Leo says that most of them are made by Chinese companies and sold to American companies. Amazon fulfills it, so it's a good idea to buy from them, and they'll stand behind them. Dave should check the reviews from Amazon and he'll see how good people think they are.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1115

LightDims are small vinyl dots that cover the LED’s on gadgets and knock the glare way down. The package includes Original Strength (Color Black) Dims 50- 80% of light -Black Out Edition (Color Black) Blocks 100% of light -Customizable Original Strength 9.5" Solid sheet, (Color Black) Dims 50-80% of light -Silver Edition (Color Silver metallic) Dims 80-90% of light designed to blend with aluminum metallic electronics like apple products. And there’s a 4-pack version you can buy which slips with no product label and the absence of some product information.

How can I remotely connect to work while traveling?

Scott from Boulder, CO

Episode 1115

Scott travels a lot and he needs to connect to work a lot. So he's looking for a good laptop that he can remotely connect in. And what should he use to do so? Leo says that services like GoToMyPC and LogMeIn work with https secure logins, and that's a good solution, but they are costly. VPNs work really well because they essentially burrow a hole directly to your network that others can't get into.

IFA Begins in Europe, and It's Becoming More Like CES

Episode 1115

Mobile Phone

The IFA convention is happening in Europe, and Leo says it's becoming more and more like CES. Right now is the ideal time for it as it as the holiday shopping season is right around the corner. Of course, there's always a lead-in of about a year from product announcement to seeing it in stores. So what's previewed this year will be out next year. Except for Apple, which typically releases its phones 10 days after the announcement.

Should I leave my computer on all day?

Episode 1114

Dan from Tehachapi, CA
Power

Dan is on his computer for about an hour and a half in the morning, then another hour and a half in the evening. Dan is wondering if he should shut down his computer during the day, or leave it on and have it go into sleep mode. Leo says that modern computers handle power pretty well. He can choose in his power saving control panel a variety of different schemes, but the default should be fine. It will go into a low power mode that only uses a few watts, even less than what a light bulb would use. During the day, if he's going to use it off and on, that's what he should do.

Is it true that Quickbooks and Excel don't work as well on Mac?

Ooma from San Juan Capistrano, CA

Episode 1114

Ooma needs a new computer and she's heard that Quickbooks and Excel doesn't work well on Mac. Leo says that there is a Mac version of Excel, and there is an online version of Quickbooks, but it's better to use in Windows.

Will Windows 7 be supported for awhile? Leo says yes. Microsoft will support it until at least 2020 for extended support, but Microsoft will end mainstream support in January 2015. Security wise, they will support it through 2020. Leo also says this is why Microsoft is pushing Windows 8 hard. Windows 9 is next year, too. But Ooma has until 2020 to change OS.