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Internet and Web
Oak is concerned about congress repealing ISP privacy protections. Is there a way he can hide his activity from his ISP so they can't have access to his data? Leo says he could use a VPN to scramble his traffic, but he'll only be giving that data out in the open to his VPN. Leo uses Hotspot VPN. Tunnel Bear is very well known as well. Oak should remember that it will slow him down a lot, and may prevent him from streaming.
Richard wants to know about Patreon. Leo says that Patreon is a great site for raising money for podcasting, video web series, and all other kinds of media content that viewers are willing to support. It's optional for the consumers, and Patreon takes a cut of the donations.
The challenge is that it's easy to overestimate the incoming amount of donations of supporters, as they are always canceling and re-upping. So if Richard is thinking of using Patreon, he should be very realistic about how much he can make with it.
It may not be an April Fool's Joke, but it sounds like one. Verizon, AT&T, and Comcast have moved to assure customers that while Congress has officially passed a law stripping privacy protections from internet users, their data will not be sold and they won't be spying on customers. This begs the question — why did they need the law passed in the first place?
April Fool's Day usually brings a host of silly products to tempt gullible internet users. From Google Gnome's outdoor home assistant, to Google Cardboard for your Chromebook, to a selfie stick for a tablet. Google also has PacMan, which you can play on Google Maps. You can also see a data center on Mars complete with solar panels. And that's just on Google.
Bill is a retired electrician and wants to learn networking and computers. Leo says it depends on how he best learns. There's a ton of great books, but ITPro.TV has a great video course on networking and IT subjects. Another good site is PracticallyNetworked.com. There's great tutorials there on networking.
(Disclaimer: ITPro.TV is a sponsor)
Dave's cable modem is failing, so he's looking to get a new one. Is the Arris modem good? Leo says absolutely, but he'll want to be sure to use one supported by his ISP. Leo uses the Arris Surfboard 6183 DOCSIS III modem. It's the fastest protocol. The Wirecutter has a pretty good listing of the cable modems that are available and they like it.
Johnny Jet's son Jack is about to take his first flight, and it requires a passport. How exciting!
The latest on travel ban: Four government subsidized airlines flying from the middle east cannot bring electronic devices, other than a phone, in the cabin. All other gear must be checked when flying into the United States because of concerns of terrorism. Delta, American and United, on the other hand, aren't subject to this ban. Johnny Jet says business travelers like himself get their work done on those long flights, so the ban is going to be problematic.
Derrick wants to move away from Yahoo. Leo advises going with Gmail. He can even tell Gmail to go get his Yahoo Mail to centralize it. Then he can gradually wean himself off it. FastMail is another good option.
John has an TPLink Archer C7 router, but he wants to know if a mesh router would be able to support adding ethernet to it. Leo says yes, it can. They're expensive, but the advantage is that he can connect to ethernet anywhere and it will handle it. John is wondering if he gets an access point to add onto his existing router, would he have two separate network names, and would he have to manually switch to the closest one? Leo says he can just name them the same, and it should work OK.