Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Is the Tap Wearable Keyboard a good idea?

Episode 1447

Josh from Austin, TX
TAP Wearable Keyboard

Josh has discovered a crazy new keyboard interface called the TAP Wearable Keyboard. Leo says that it allows you to turn any surface into a keyboard, but you have to completely relearn how to type to use it. It's just available for preorder also, so it hasn't hit the market yet. Leo says this is a category that's going to blow up in the near future. It has an accelerometer built into it to read the movement of your fingers. But this is a very inconvenient way to type for those who have been typing for years.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1447

Dick DeBartolo

This week's gadget from Dickie D is the Twistmas Light. Twistmas Lights allow anyone to take their favorite photos and make their own personalized holiday ornaments that are lit up. You can decorate your tree with what matters most to you; special family photos, pets, photos of family history, favorite sports teams and more...the possibilities are endless. It's also the perfect personalized gift for friends and family members. A Twistmas Light can be purchased as an individual ornament or a package of six ornaments.

What's a good tablet to connect to my drone?

Episode 1447

Greg from Riverside, CA
Mavic Pro Drone

Greg has a Mavic Pro Drone and he wants a new tablet to pair with the controller for a larger screen. Leo says that the Mavic is a very nice quadcopter with a nice camera in it. Leo says the iPad Mini is a good one, but the standard iPad would also be good, and larger. He should look to spend between $300 and $400 for it. Sadly, Samsung has stopped upgrading the software for their Galaxy Tab line, so that really won't be a good idea.

How can I get data off a dead iPod?

Episode 1447

Paul from Montecito, CA
iPod

Paul has an iPod with some unreplaceable media on it. It won't let him charge anymore and he's afraid he's lost his media. Leo says it depends on how old it is. He should look on the back and see what the model number is. Chances are, the battery just doesn't hold a charge anymore. He may be able to replace the battery. Before he does that, though, he should try and get it powered up by connecting it to his computer. If it powers up, then he can get the data off with iTunes. If not, that model iPod has a spinning hard drive in it, so he could remove it.

Should I buy a refurbished MacBook Pro?

Episode 1446

Eric from Long Beach, CA
MacBook Pro

Eric is looking to get a Best Buy refurbished 2011 MacBook Pro for $600. Is that a good deal? Leo says he usually recommends getting a refurb model from the manufacturer. He'll get a warranty that way. Best Buy probably wiped the hard drive and checked a few things, but it's not strictly refurbished. 4GB RAM is also a little light, but it will support High Sierra MacOS. Warranty wise, a good refurb should include a 1-year warranty. 3 months won't really help him. Leo would also recommend spending a little more money and getting a 2015 model.

Can I splice a cable to make it longer?

Episode 1446

Greg from Pasadena, CA
Logitech Extension Cable

Greg has a Logitech video conference system and he wants to know if he can make an extension cable based on the PS2 cable. He made one, but it says "USB device not recognized." Logitech's extension is too short and expensive. Leo says there's probably some circuitry bonded into the cable that it's looking for. He may want to try splicing in additional cable in the original. He'll be destroying it, but it may work. He may also need to deal with DRM Copy Protection. But if the circuitry is on either end and he's splicing in more cable in the middle, he may be good to go.

Why does my laptop display have problems after waking up?

Episode 1446

Andrew from California
BIOS

Andrew's laptop goes to sleep and when he wakes it up, it shows a broken up video screen until he reboots. Leo says it wakes up confused, and he's not surprised since it's Windows. But he's never seen what Andrew describes. It usually causes problems like this with Hibernation, but not sleep. That's why he recommends disabling hibernate. But sleep shouldn't do that since the RAM gets refreshed regularly. If his BIOS is out of date, that could cause it. But it's never happened to Leo. Andrew should also make sure his display drivers are up to date.