Internet and Web

Your internet connection, web sites and services.

How can I build a podcast audience?

Dillon from Apple Dorn, Netherlands

Episode 1082

Dillon wants to start a podcast, but doesn't know how to build his audience. Leo says that's the wrong way to think about it. An "audience" expects to be amused and entertained. For podcasting, that's just not enough. He'll want to build a community who will stay engaged with him and his show. He'll want to have discussions, chats, etc. The realm of media has really changed.

Why can't my Obihai VOiP box use Google chat anymore?

Episode 1082

Joe from Tampa, FL

Joe got a VOiP box from Obihai which lets him have phone service. But now it won't let him use third party apps like Google Chat. Leo says that was always a hack that Obihai used in order to use Google Chat. Google has taken the XMPP servers down, which means Obihai can't use it. And as such, they've created alternatives. But they won't necessarily be free when they do.

Could the FCC's Net Neutrality rules affect VOiP services like Ooma?

Episode 1081

Steve from Torrance, CA

Steve is considering the Ooma VOIP phone service, but he's concerned about net neutrality and how it will affect him. Leo says that's what's happening in Canada right now as the ISPs who also offer phone service, are buffering or flat out dropping Skype calls to frustrate that. It's very anti-competitive. What Leo suggests is that before Steve buy Ooma, that he should spend time using Skype so he can gauge how voice over IP works. There are some drawbacks.

Johnny Jet

Episode 1081

Johnny Jet is in Europe crusing around the Mediterranean near the island of Elba. And he didn't want to miss the show, so he called in on a satellite phone!

Johnny's found a great website called You can rent boats. You can also rent out your own boat. Over 13 million registered users. So if you want to go boating but don't want to buy one, check out BoatBound!

Amazon Kicks Router Company Off for Threatening to Sue Reviewer

Episode 1081

Amazon has removed a company from their site for threatening to sue a reviewer who posted a review which Leo says could be libelous because his comments can't be proven. Leo says that the company MediaBridge, may have had a case, but Amazon's decision to take MediaBridge's products off the site seems to be a hefty penalty. Leo says posting an opinion is protected and just fine. But to make statements that you can't factually prove open you up to libel. So the moral of the story is, when you write a review, be accurate.

How can I create free public Wi-Fi?

Stan from Bettsville, OH

Episode 1080

Stan is on the local village council and wants to set up free Wi-Fi at their local parks. He doesn't know where to start, though. Leo says what Stan wants is a WISP (Wireless Internet Service Provider). When cities do public Wi-Fi, they go to a company and contract with them to do it for free in exchange for advertising. So that may be an option.

Google has a program called Google Community Wi-Fi. Local companies would be better than larger corporations.

How can I control Skype's video settings?

Episode 1080

Thomas from Zurich, Switzerland
Cisco Precision HD

Thomas uses Skype a lot and it drives him nuts that the video will suddenly go into widescreen, and the audio degrades in quality. Leo says that's by design as Skype will see how much bandwidth he has and then adjust the video accordingly, even if it degrades the audio. Leo says he can get a program called WebCam Settings in the Mac App Store which will give him more control. It's about $8. But it may not overrule Skype.

Why can't I backup more than one video at a time with Carbonite?

Mark from Santa Ana, CA

Episode 1080

Mark is a bit frustrated that he can't automatically backup videos using Carbonite. Leo says that is by design, because videos use up a lot of bandwidth. It would kill his internet access for days, weeks, or even months just to backup videos. It's fine for documents and images, but he really needs to do the math in order to do video and then determine when he wants to do it. Leo says that's why he recommends backing up to a hard drive that he can take off site.

(Disclaimer: Carbonite is a sponsor)

Why doesn't the iPad have external storage?

Episode 1080

Neil from Phoenix, AZ
iPad Air

Neil built a killer desktop computer, but he's now finding his needs are simpler now. So he's thinking of getting an iPad. Leo says it really comes down to what he wants a computer for. He wouldn't write a novel on it, but for surfing the internet, doing email, and documents, it's ideal.

Neil says it lacks external storage, though. Leo says that is an issue. The iPad does come in an 128GB model now, but most of us store our data in the cloud, where he can access it any time. So he really won't need that external storage on the iPad.