A Look Back

LarryTalksTech: A look back at 2012

Some Reflection

The end of a year usually brings about some reflection and I thought this would be a good time to look back at the roots of LarryTalksTech, comment on some of the articles written during 2012, and provide updates where applicable.

In The Beginning…

I’d been kicking around the idea of writing a blog for several months.  As a big fan of Apple products, writing articles about “all things Apple” seemed a natural for me.  In April of 2012, I began researching a number of free blog sites, and settled on WordPress.Com.  A simple site was built, and iSpeakApple came to life.  After publishing a few articles that were Mac “How To’s”, and a product review or two, I found myself moving away from the original concept.  It seemed to me that articles in the blog might benefit other technology enthusiasts in solving some of the common and numerous technical issues that arise as one begins to gain technological skills and push the envelope a bit on what they can do with the technology around them.

I am certainly not a technology guru by any stretch of the imagination, but I have successfully butted heads with many tech related issues over the years, and gained a great deal of understanding (not to mention some humility and appreciation) of numerous tech related processes.  If sharing the information I have learned could save people some time, lower their frustration level, provide some direction, and maybe even help them from making the same mistakes I did along the way, then my blog would have both a meaningful direction and a purpose.

Now that I knew where I wanted to take the blog, a less restrictive venue for my website needed to be found, and I began shopping for a host.  Machighway had exactly what was needed (and at a great price).  After going through another learning curve on setting up and maintaining a my own website, LarryTalksTech was born.  With LarryTalksTech, we have broadened our scope of articles, that range from reviews on some iPad software to setting up a home network, or configuring your surround sound speakers and subwoofer.

A Look Back

A Look Back

Looking Back

Security

Six articles were written about ways to help keep your entire computer experience as secure as possible:

The Keep Your Mac Safe series are some of the most viewed articles on LarryTalksTech.  The best advice we can give you, “Make a security plan, not only for your computer, but how you use your computer as well.  Execute your plan, and stick to it.”  Most of the data in these articles will help you with that, and will work for PCs as well as Macs.

Note:  The Tor Browser bundle keeps getting better, and is still the safest way to surf the net.

Running Two Computers with a Single Keyboard and Mouse

There are two articles written on this topic:

In these articles we discussed Synergy, Teleport, and Sharemouse software.  If you have two computers, using either of the three software programs you will gain desk space, and add a great deal of versatility to your computer work processes.  When you move your mouse off one screen and onto another, you control that computer with your keyboard and mouse.  Click the articles just above for details.

Update:  Having used all three programs for quite awhile, the latest version of Synergy is definitely the best solution.  I have updated my machines to this version. It is a snap to set up, the most responsive I’ve used so far, and allows copying between computers.  I have Synergy running on Windows XP, a Mac, and a Debian (Linux) laptop.  No issues, Synergy just does what it is supposed to do.

A New Use For That Old Router

This article came from my frustration on using my wireless iPad in my front room. I kept loosing the WiFi signal because my router was in another room at the opposite end of my house.  I remembered there was some open-source software that could add new life to old routers, or make an old router into a repeater, and I needed a repeater.  After digging in my closet the old router was found, and I downloaded and installed the software, which is DD-WRT.  Warning:  This update is not for the faint of heart.  Follow the instructions exactly and you will likely have positive results; however, if you make a mistake, your could “brick” your router and turn it into a paperweight.  Click on the title for the article below for the “How To”:

Repurpose Your Old WiFI Router As A Super Router Or Repeater with DD-WRT

Update:  After six months of using my repurposed router (now a repeater), I have had no problems.  It has really added coverage to my wireless network, – I can actually walk completely around the outside of my house and still have a very usable WiFi signal.

Power Mac G5 Desktop

This article is about what a value these computers still are.  Click the link below for the entire article:

Power Mac G4 Desktop:  A lot of computer for a few hundred dollars

Update:  My Power Mac has been converted to a Media Server, and is connected to my HDTV by way of a DVI-to-HDMI cable.  As it is still on my network, when the Power Mac is not doing duty as a Media Server (or running XBMC) it is used as a computer with a very very big monitor (my HDTV).

Cutting the Cable

There has been a lot interest in using media from the internet, or “over the air”, to replace satellite or cable TV services.  We published the following article on the XBMC media server, and LarryTalksTech lit up with visitors (Click the title to see the full article):

XBMC Media Center PC Setup

I wrote an article where I tested an inside antenna and an outside antenna for collecting HD broadcasts from “over the air”.  The website had similar results for increased visits.  Here is the article (Click it to see the full article):

Mohu Leaf Plus Indoor HDTV Antenna Review

Update:  Cutting the Cable is still a topic that is a work in progress.  There are numerous pros and cons to using “over the air” and the internet as your media source.  Stay tuned, an article examining this will soon be on the way.

And More…..

To see more articles from LarryTalksTech, click on any month in the “Archives” section located on the right of the page your are now on.

Thank You

Thank you for visiting our site.  LarryTalksTech has been both a great learning experience as well as a great deal of fun for us.  As of today, LarryTalksTech has a library of 33 articles and has been visited by several thousand technology enthusiasts from around the world.  We hope you find our articles here useful to you.

Best wishes for a happy and successful 2013!!!

 

 

 

 

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