Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Beware of chain mails!

As we progress into 2015, I want to thank you for
your educational e-mails over the past year. I am
totally screwed up now and have little chance of recovery.

I can no longer open a bathroom door without  using
a paper towel, nor let the waitress put lemon slices in
my ice water without worrying about the bacteria on
the lemon  peel.

I can't sit down on a hotel bedspread because I  can
only imagine what has happened on it since it was last washed.

Eating a little snack sends me on a guilt trip because I
can only imagine how many gallons of trans fats I have
consumed over the years.

I can't touch any woman's  handbag for fear she has placed
it on the floor of a public  toilet.

I must send my special thanks for the email about rat poo 
in the glue on envelopes because I now have to use a wet
sponge with every envelope that needs  sealing.

ALSO,now I have to scrub the top of every can I open for
the same reason.

I can't use cancer-causing deodorants even though I smell
like a water buffalo on a hot  day.

Thanks to you I have learned that my prayers only get answered
if I forward an e-mail to seven of my friends and make a wish
within five minutes.

Because of your concern, I no longer drink Coca Cola because 
it can remove toilet  stains.

I no longer buy fuel without taking someone  along to watch the car,
so a serial killer doesn't crawl in my back seat when I'm filling up.

I no longer use  Cling Wrap in the microwave because it causes 
seven different types of cancer.

And thanks for letting me know I can't boil a cup of water 
in the microwave anymore because it will blow up in my face,
disfiguring me for life.

I no longer go to  the cinema because I could be pricked with a 
needle infected with AIDS when I sit down.

I no longer go to shopping  centers because someone will drug 
me with a perfume sample and rob me..

And I no longer answer the phone because someone will ask 
me to dial a number for which I will get a  huge phone bill with
calls to Jamaica, Uganda, Singapore and Uzbekistan.

And thanks to your great advice I can't ever pick up a 
dime coin dropped in the car park X-Spam-Subject: YES X-Spam-Subject: YES because it was  probably
placed there by a sex molester waiting to grab me as I bend over.

I can't do any gardening, because I'm afraid I'll get bitten
by the Violin Spider and my hand will fall off.

Now.......If you don't send this e-mail to at least 144,000 people in
the next 70 minutes, a large dove with diarrhea will land  
on your head at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow afternoon, and the
fleas  from 120 camels will infest your back, causing you 
to grow a hairy  hump. I know this will occur because it 
actually happened to a  friend of my next door neighbor's 
ex mother-in-law's second  husband's cousin's best friend's 
beautician!  JUST  KIDDING....!

Oh, and by the way...

A German scientist from Argentina, after a lengthy  study, 
has discovered that people with insufficient brain activity read their e-mails with their hand on the mouse.

Don't  bother taking it off now, it's too late.

P. S. I now keep my  toothbrush in the living room, because 
I was told by e-mail that  water splashes over 6 ft. out
of the  toilet.. 


These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works 

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works
These posters will give you a sense of familiarity because they 
depict exactly how our generation deals with life. Apart from being 
funny, they are absolutely spot on and totally worth your time. 

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

These Posters Show Exactly How Our Generation Works

Rich People Problems, Will Bring Tears To Your Eyes

To Eject Flash Drive Before Removing It?

Do You Really Need to Eject Your Flash Drive (or Device) Before Removing It?

By Andy Betts
It’s well known that USB flash drives are supposed to be ejected before removing them. Your computer will often display a scary warning if you fail to safely eject the drive. But do you really still need to do this? What happens if you don’t?
Let’s take a look.

Different Protocols

First, we need to consider three different protocols your drive may use when connecting to your computer. Two of them don’t need to be ejected at all.
  • USB Mass Storage: This is the main way a flash drive will connect to a computer. It allows the system to see it as an actual drive — it shows up on the desktop on a Mac, and is assigned a drive letter in Windows. It functions exactly as an internal drive does, so you can use it for storage or even run software off it.
mounted flash drive
  • Media Transfer Protocol (MTP): This protocol is built into Windows and requires separate software on a Mac. It’s frequently used by Android devices. With MTP, you can copy files back and forth, but as it is seen by the system as a portable device rather than a drive, it does not need to be ejected.
  • Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP): This is used by digital cameras to transfer images to a computer. It’s supported by Windows and Mac, and can be used by any application that supports the importing of images. PTP is very similar to MTP, so also does not need to be ejected.
Smartphones, cameras and other media devices that connect via either MTP or PTP can be disconnected simply by pulling out the USB plug without any damage to its storage.

Why Would You Need to Eject a Drive?

If your drive (or device) connects using the USB Mass Storage protocol then it should ideally be ejected. Although, as we’ll see, it differs slightly depending on whether you’re using Mac or Windows.
This applies even if you’re not actually using the device at the time.
The reason is because operating systems use a process called write caching. The operating system doesn’t always write a file to a drive immediately, but instead caches it and waits until it has multiple write operations to complete.
Doing these all at once improves performance, but if the cache is still full when you remove the drive, your data will become corrupted. Clicking the Eject button causes the cache to be emptied and any remaining data to be written to the drive.
That’s the reason why there’s often a delay of several seconds between ejecting the drive and being notified that it’s safe to remove it.
There are also potential issues with the abrupt removal of the power supply from a flash drive. Flash memory is susceptible to this, and it can cause parts of the drive to become corrupt.

Ejecting a Drive on a Mac

All this information applies to flash drives plugged into Mac computers, and to Linux machines as well.
These use write caching to deliver superior performance.
Ejecting a drive on a Mac is a simple process. Just drag the flash drive icon — that will have appeared on the desktop when you first connected it — into the Trash. Or click the Eject icon next to the drive name in a Finder window.
ejected flash drive

Ejecting a Drive in Windows

The situation with Windows is slightly different.
By default, Windows has write caching disabled. This results in slightly inferior performance when writing to the drive, but also adds a layer of security to the many users who forget to ever eject them.
If you’re not concerned about the risks, you can activate write caching on drive-by-drive basis.
To do this, locate the Device Manager on your PC — Control Panel > Hardware and Sound > Hardware and Printers > Device Manager on Windows 7; or right-click in the bottom left corner of the screen and choose Device Manager on Windows 8.
Right-click on the attached drive, click the Policies tab, change the removal policy to “Better Performance”, and enable write caching setting accordingly.
If you do this, you will always need to ensure you eject the drive via the Safely Remove Hardware option in the system tray.
And just to note, write caching is already enabled on internal drives by default and you shouldn’t disable this as you will notice a significant drop in responsiveness.

A Quick Word about Hard Drives

So far we’ve been talking about flash drives. If you’re using an external hard drive then you should always eject it before you disconnect.
Most modern external hard drives will also be powered over the USB connection. Cutting the power while the drive is in use could cause a head crash.
This is where the head, which swings back and forth just above the spinning disk to read and write data, comes into direct contact with the disk and causes physical damage to it.
This can render large chunks of the disk unusable, or even the entire drive. Learn how to properly care for your hard drives.


So, to summarise, media devices don’t need to be ejected. Neither do flash drives on Windows, unless you’ve specifically changed the settings for them. Drives on Macs should always be ejected, as should hard drives.
Improper removal of drives could cause data corruption, or in worse cases, put the integrity of your drive at risk.
Do you always eject your drives before unplugging them? Have you ever suffered data loss or other problems as a result of not doing so? Let us know in the comments below.
Image Credits: External hard drive via Karen  Source: www.makeuseof.com

Why Introverts Love Facebook and Extroverts Hate It

By Ryan Dube
Ads by Google
Do you love Facebook? Do you enjoy getting a glimpse into the daily lives of your family and friends? If you do, there’s an excellent chance that you’re an introvert. If you hate Facebook, you could be an extrovert.
Everything about Facebook serves the emotional and psychological needs of introverts. It gives them a place to socialize and chat with people they like, without having to deal with the elements of in-person dialogues that make them uncomfortable. It allows them to say their piece, without being interrupted, scowled at, or patronized.
Extroverts, on the other hand, often despise everything about Facebook. The facial cues, the back-and-forth banter and the physical contact are all missing. In fact, it’s often the extrovert who expounds upon the tragedy that social networks and smartphones are causing to society and interpersonal relationships.
It’s time to take a stand for all of you introverts who love Facebook as much as I do.

Introverts Don’t Look Up

Do you remember that viral video that spread throughout Facebook (ironically) like wildfire?
It expounded upon how our obsession with using smartphones to check email, social network status updates and other ways of remotely connecting with family and friends over the Internet is somehow destroying the fabric of society and interpersonal interactions.
It had millions of views, and oddly it’s now offline. However, the reaction I personally had to this video was expressed perfectly by a response video created by Murderbot Productions, called “Look Down”.
Ads by Google

My favorite part of that rhyme went as follows:
“I mean start a conversation on the bus?
Are you kidding me?
I’m talking all the time.
I’m learning constantly.

That my mother’s a much deeper person than I might ever have known her to be;
And that I have the funniest friends in the world;
especially those who are just on Reddit spreading new memes.
Loneliness is not in the global community;
if there’s a commonality you just can’t see,
look a little harder because;
we all want the same thing.”
The part that hit the nail on the head as far as why Facebook appeals so much to the Introvert was a little further in the video, and went like this:
“An asshole in person is the same as online;
only worse because I can’t block you, and you’re harder to avoid.”
And that’s the crux of it. Introverts are the folks you see sitting at the corner table at the party, alone and uncomfortable, because they can’t stand being trapped in the middle of some mindless, mundane conversations with boring people. It gives them a headache. In real life, you can’t “block” the extrovert who just loves to hear themselves talk, and won’t ever shut up.

The Psychology of Introverts

In a fascinating, long-running study started in 1989 by Dr Jerome Kagan, researchers found that infants and toddlers who were hypersensitive to external stimuli, typically grew up to be quiet, reserved and thoughtful introverts.
“The higher the degree of ‘hypersensitivity’ an individual experiences towards sights, sounds, smells, and the closeness of other people, the more likely it is that those same individuals will seek to avoid them.
Hypersensitivity both creates and explains why introverts hold such a strong preference for seeking out quiet, serene and unpopulated spaces in which to live and work.”
It is for this very reason that the experience of using Facebook appeals so much more to introverted people. From the quiet comfort of your own home, you can enjoy a virtual “party” with friends and family. You can exchange witty jokes, play online games together, and even dive into a long and very intimate instant chat with loved ones.
You can do all of that without having to endure a voice blasting into your ear from a telephone, without the distractions and background noise of an actual in-person party, and without the danger of an extrovert jumping into the conversation, tossing you aside, and taking over.

Extroverts Don’t Use Facebook as Much as Introverts

Really, the smoking gun that introverts love Facebook much more than extroverts is the fact that they use it more.
Late last year, Dr. Pavica Sheldon at the University of Alabama in Huntsville conducted a study on this very topic, which she published in the Journal of Psychosocial Research on Cyberspace. In that study, she found that while extroverts may be more active on Facebook, Introverts actually use the social network for much longer periods of time than extroverts.
In other words, even though the extroverts who are there tend to try to steal the limelight (just like they do in real life), Facebook is actually utilized much more by introverts. Why? Because Facebook appeals to an introverts desire to control who they interact with, and how that interaction takes place. Unlike in-person environments where introverts often feel like they have no control over interactions.
This need to control how communication takes place is what makes social networks in general more appealing to introverts.  Krystal D’Costa said it best in a Scientific American article on introverts online, when she wrote:
“…this has also long been a criticism of these forms of communication—the ideas that reducing direct contact actually hurts relationships. We know that these media are not well suited to fully capturing the nuances of a conversation. But for introverts, they might actually be ideal because they offer the chance to control the interaction.”
This is especially true on Facebook, where you can make your status updates visible only to the family and friends who you’ve accepted into your list of Facebook “friends”. You can tell Facebook not to show you updates in the news stream from people you find annoying or rude. If someone is obnoxious when commenting on your Facebook wall, you can simply remove them as a friend, and you never have to see or hear from them again.
For introverts, this is a dream come true.

Introverts, Why Do You Love Facebook?

Are you an introvert who loves Facebook? Share the reasons why you spend so much time on Facebook and probably always will. Make your voice heard on the matter — don’t be shy!
Jonny McCullagh via Shutterstock, Photographee.eu via Shutterstock, Creatista via Shutterstock, Rasstock via Shutterstock Source: www.makeuseof.com

Facebook Adds Apps to Messenger

Facebook Adds Apps to Messenger, Amazon Tests Robot Packers, & More… 

By Dave Parrack
Facebook Messenger API, Amazon wants robots, Facebook video embeds, RadioShack sells everything, Halo Online in Russia, and when Apple Store employees go bad.

Facebook Turns Messenger Into a Platform

Facebook is opening Messenger up to third-party developers, allowing them to add apps of their own. Messenger Platform turns Messenger from a simple app into its own platform, with 40 new add-ons having already been developed.
Rather than install apps to your smartphone via Google Play or the App Store, you’ll install apps to Facebook Messenger. These will then add new ways of communicating to Messenger, with, for example, Giphy sending animated GIFs, JibJab sending eCards, and The Weather Channel sending forecasts, all from within Messenger.
This is a bold move, but one which could make Facebook Messenger its own self-contained social network. Messenger already has 600 million users, which explains why companies are keen to jump on board even though it means giving up some power to the mighty Facebook.

Amazon Wants More Robot Workers

Amazon already uses robots to transport goods around its giant warehouses prior to sending them out to customers, but the online retailer has plans to increase its autonomous army of pickers and packers. Which is obviously great news for the human workforce.
The robots currently employed by Amazon mostly move heavy loads around the warehouses, at which point human employees take over. But according to MIT Technology Review, Amazon is looking to automate the whole process, including the picking and packing of items of all shapes and sizes.
To this end, 30 teams will compete in May at the International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Seattle. The robots able to best pack a range of items into boxes will win, with prize money of $25,000 up for grabs. However, the real winner will be Amazon, as this could signpost a future when humans are surplus to requirements.

Facebook Introduces Video Embeds

Facebook is finally allowing users to embed video on other sites across the Web. YouTube has been offering this rather obvious feature for many years, but Facebook has caught up at last, letting users embed videos hosted on the social networking site with a simple HTML code. Users previously had to link to the actual Facebook page, which is why no one bothered.
Facebook has also unveiled a new type of content it’s calling “spherical videos.” These are shot using 24 cameras working together to create a 3D environment the viewer can move through and explore from all angles. Again, YouTube has beaten Facebook to the punch, having recently unveiled similar technology, but competition is always healthy.

RadioShack Is Selling Customer Data

As part of its bankruptcy auction, troubled U.S. electronics retailer RadioShack is selling off the personal data of millions of its customers. According to Bloomberg, 13 million email addresses and up to 65 million customer names and physical addresses are included in the assets sale.
The attorney generals of both Texas and Tennessee are fighting against this sell-off, citing the fact that RadioShack stores formerly displayed signs stating, “We pride ourselves on not selling our private mailing list.” Just because the company is in deep financial trouble doesn’t mean its customers should pay the price.

In Russia, Halo is Free To Play

Microsoft is releasing a free-to-play version of Halo titled Halo Online, but unfortunately, it’s only available in Russia. 343 Industries has created the PC game in conjunction with Saber Interactive and Innova Systems, and it’s starting life in a closed beta.
Halo Online is based on a modified version of Halo 3, and set “on a secret UNSC space installation called Anvil, where Spartan-IV soldiers train together in war exercises to sharpen their battle skills and test experimental technology.
There are currently no plans to release Halo Online anywhere other than Russia, and it looks unlikely to be released on Xbox One or Xbox 360. So, screw the rest of us, but PC gamers in Russia certainly have something to celebrate.

Fake Store Employees Troll Apple

And finally, with their distinctive uniforms and smug attitudes, you can spot Apple Store employees a mile off. But this also means they can be mimicked rather easily. As these pranksters prove.
Sure, they all quickly get caught giving bogus advice to customers, but not before advising anyone who will listen to go with Microsoft instead. And if just one Apple fanboy was roused from their devotion by this prank, it was all have been worth it. [H/T Independent]

Your Views on Today’s Tech News

Are you pleased to see Facebook opening Messenger up to other apps? Could your job ever be done by a robot? Should RadioShack be allowed to auction off its customer data?
Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.   Source: www.makeuseof.com

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Making a Powerful PowerPoint Presentation

Make a PowerPoint Presentation That Doesn’t Put Your Audience to Sleep

By Dave LeClair
PowerPoint presentations, when done right, can be an engaging way to provide an audience with information. When done poorly, however, they can quickly put the audience to sleep. Like anything, there’s a fine line between a good PowerPoint and a bad one, and when you see the bored or engaged faces of the audience, you’ll know exactly on which side you’ve landed.
So what you can do to make your PowerPoint presentations informative and exciting? Follow the tips outlined on the infographic below, and you’ll be well on your way!
Not making PowerPoints, but forced to sit through them for work? Maybe you should share these tips (anonymously, of course) with your boss to make you day a little more interesting!
Via Udemy
Click To Enlarge

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Grouvi Is the New WhatsApp for Topic-Based Chats

 By Tim Brookes

Have a question that needs answering right now? Maybe it’s a computer conundrum that even Google can’t help with, or perhaps you’re just wondering what to wear to your next job interview.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could directly target a group of people who are already interested in what you have to say? That’s exactly the intention behind Grouvi, the latest mobile venture for iOS and Android by Aibek Esengulov (MakeUseOf founder).
Grouvi brings people with common interests together using a simple mobile app, and we think the potential is massive.

Connecting People

Grouvi is a mobile app, and that mobile accessibility is key to its effectiveness as a platform for discussion, discovery and support. The app brings users together under groups — except unlike Yahoo or Facebook groups, these channels have massive instant reach thanks to the immediacy of a mobile platform and push notifications.
That makes Grouvi a bit of a jack of all trades. If you’re simply looking for somewhere to hang out and chat about the latest iPhone games, you’re in luck. Then again if you have a more specific question you want to ask, you can simply find the relevant group and ask away.
There’s no hard limit on discussions with Grouvi. If the group doesn’t exist, you can choose to create it. If you only have a passing interest in certain groups, you can mute notifications and check in on your own terms. The platform’s primary aim is to assemble a collective of individuals who, just like you, value the instant reach of a topic-based discussion platform.
The closest thing I can compare Grouvi with is WhatsApp Messenger, except unlike WhatsApp messenger, Grouvi isn’t designed to put you in touch with people you already know, but those who share your passions and interests.

Find & Create Groups

Grouvi keeps things simple — if you’ve ever used a messenger app before, everything will seem familiar.
The Groups tab is where you will find the channels you currently belong to, with a toggle for keeping track of those you have created yourself. Create a new group using the plus “+” icon in the top-left corner. Groups can be private but not hidden, with private groups requiring admin approval of requests to join.
Hit the search icon in the top-right corner to be taken to the Featured Groups page. Here you can peruse the currently-trending groups, or use the search field to narrow down your selection. Tap a group to see a preview of it, or hit Join Group at the bottom of the screen to add it to your list. By default, any new groups you join will send you notifications — but you can change this from the groups list.
In order to mute a group, find the group you would like to mute within your list and swipe right-to-left. Three options appear: Mute, Media and Information. The first mutes notifications, the second displays all media shared within the group (much like iOS Messages own “Details” screen) and the final icon provides a group overview.

Saves & Favourites

Groups allow you to send and receive text, photo or video messages. It’s possible to save any of these for later by simply long-pressing the message and selecting Save(which looks like a bookmark icon). You can also “like” messages by long-pressing and tapping the heart icon, which is used to highlight interesting portions of the conversation.
The ability to save messages allows you to continue chatting in a group without having to open another app or browser in order to save a link, image or message. These items all appear on the Saves tab, which sorts all of your saves by channel for easy categorisation.
Finally, the Profile tab is all about you. You can change your display picture, view your message count, reputation (determined by the number of items you have posted which people have liked and saved) and any groups you belong to. This is your public profile, accessible by anyone who taps your avatar or name in a channel.
You can change other settings like incoming notification sounds and vibration alerts under the settings panel in the top-right corner, if you really want to.     Source: www.makeuseof.com

Apple's Record-Breaking $18 Billion Profit

How Did Apple Achieve Its Record-Breaking $18 Billion Profit?

By Dave LeClair
Apple‘s record-breaking $18 billion profit in the last quarter made us stand up and take notice. It seems crazy for one company to take in that much profit in such a short time frame, but alas, Apple did it.
How did Apple manage to make such an absurd amount of profit in only 3 months? Is it the Apple fanboys, or something else? Which products lead to the company making most of that money? The infographic below features a fascinating breakdown of just how Apple pulled it off.
Via Wrapps
Click To Enlarge

How to View and Delete Your Location History on Facebook

By  Nancy Messieh, If you have the Facebook mobile app installed on your phone, chances are it’s storing a lot more of your location hi...