Try this easy and powerful online photo editing application…

November 20, 2014

I have tried and tested numerous online photo (graphic) editors and the one that I am finding that is tried, tested and true is iPiccy… This editor appears to have been around awhile, with my last review being back in 2011 when it was in beta. Back then iPiccy sported over 30 creative editing tools and now it sports over 110 creative editing tools. Since then iPiccy has matured quite nicely.

What I really like about this editor is that it runs very nicely in the browser and has an exhaustive list of editing tools that is normally found in some of the higher end software based editors that you would normally install on your computer. Give it a try and I think you will be impressed. iPiccy is FREE and registration is not required (unless to want to take advantage of photo layers and the collages).

iPiccy

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What’s On My PC – Recent Articles (November 10, 2014 – November 19, 2014)

November 20, 2014
Wed, 19 Nov 2014 13:06:52 EST
I just posted an article about Checker Plus for Gmail and while at the developer’s site I noticed he had developed another Google Chrome browser extension called Checker Plus for Google Calendar. Again, this is another extension by this developer that is carrying a very high user base rating. I am a big time user […]

Tue, 18 Nov 2014 15:23:25 EST
When I see a five star rating at the Google Chrome Web Store I know it has to be something good. If you are a Google Chrome browser fan and use Gmail then you must download the Google Chrome browser extension called Checker Plus for Gmail. Before I go further, if you click this link […]

Mon, 17 Nov 2014 10:34:10 EST
I want to start off this post by stating something I tell people, especially the elderly, who came from a generation that trusted other people. “If you receive an unsolicited telephone call, whether it be a charity, a politician, an alarm company, your grandson is locked up in a jail in Canada, etc… where the […]

Sun, 16 Nov 2014 9:59:59 EST
Recently during a software install I found myself in a hurry and noticed about halfway through the install I was authorizing third party installs (of other software) that was piggy backing the software that I really wanted to install. Needless to say I do not like the idea of software developers doing this; especially when […]

Sat, 15 Nov 2014 23:22:25 EST
Originally posted on TCAT Shelbyville – Technical Blog:
Ironically I’ve seen warnings from other techs like Dawn, Mickey and more of my IT peers about fake Microsoft calls. Today, I got the pleasure of speaking with one. When these people call you, they will identify themselves as a Microsoft employee or some other prominent company.   Microsoft…

Sat, 15 Nov 2014 20:50:23 EST
Learn to tie knots for a variety of purposes at Animated Knots By Grog. As the title of the site indicates, you can select a knot of interest, and then watch an animated presentation on how the knot is made.  Really neat site…

Thu, 13 Nov 2014 21:15:34 EST
Are you familiar with the web browser called Maxthon? If so, I discovered that the developers of Maxthon are working from the ground up to develop a speedster of a browser called Maxthon Nitro. Maxthon Nitro is currently in the alpha stage of development. If you want to give it a try, no install is […]

Tue, 11 Nov 2014 10:27:03 EST
To maintain optimum cooling performance and stability of your computers and electronics it is necessary that on a regularly scheduled basis that you blow out the dust that accumulates. I have seen the interior components of computers so laden with dust that a blanket had actually developed causing the computer to overheat and stop functioning. […]

Mon, 10 Nov 2014 11:36:32 EST
If you have a Nexus 5, Moto X, or LG G2 (or other recent high-end device) that features a hardware step sensor AND you want a pedometer with the NEW Android UI (called Material Design) then take a look at Pedometer (by Ivin Liu)… What I like about this particular pedometer is that it is […]

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TECH DEAL – A Mouse With A 3 Year Battery Life

November 19, 2014

Just purchased the Logitech Wireless Marathon Mouse M705 With 3-year Battery Life and I must say I am impressed with the “smooth as butter” hyper scrolling that you can toggle (at the push of a button) to a more precise scrolling. As a matter of fact when I purchased this mouse I could not (initially) figure out what the button on top of the mouse was for.

If the battery life is what is claimed, and based on my computer usage, I may wear this thing out before the batteries expire; but, then I noticed the feet on this mouse can be changed??? The Marathon Mouse M705 uses less than half the battery power of comparable wireless mice.

So far, as all Logitech products I have owned, I am loving this mouse… The Logitech Wireless Marathon Mouse M705, at Amazon, is (at the time of this post) is approximately 30% off the regular price.

Logitech Wireless Marathon Mouse M705 With 3-year Battery Life

Logitech M705 Marathon Mouse

Extended battery life
Save time, money and the planet by practically eliminating battery changes.

Hand-friendly design
Contoured shape and finger rests poise your hand for comfortable control.

Tiny Logitech Unifying receiver
One plug-and-forget USB receiver stays in your notebook and let you connect up to six Unifying- compatible devices like keyboards and mice. To learn more about Logitech Unifying receiver click here

Hyper-fast scroll wheel
Fly through long documents and web pages with a single spin.

Precision cursor control
Smooth, accurate laser tracking, even on challenging surfaces like a polished desk

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Checker Plus for Google Calendar – Another Google Chrome Browser Extension Gem

November 19, 2014

I just posted an article about Checker Plus for Gmail and while at the developer’s site I noticed he had developed another Google Chrome browser extension called Checker Plus for Google Calendar.

Again, this is another extension by this developer that is carrying a very high user base rating. I am a big time user of Google Calendar and this extension makes it so that you can do any and all your calendaring activitiies easily from the Chrome Browser. If you want more details, information and support for Checker Plus for Google Calendar, I encourage you to visit the developer’s site — CLICK HERE 

Check Plus for Google Calendar

Again, as I did in the article about Checker Plus for Gmail, below you will find a video about Checker Plus for Google Calendar; AND, the highlights and features (verbatim as reflected on the developer’s site).

Enjoy! Great piece of work on something that I find to be very useful.

100 times more powerful than the “by Google” extension and with desktop and voice notifications and great reviews

  • Trusted developer of many extensions – more than one million satisfied users worldwide
  • Lots of features, options and updates – just read the version changes in the logs below
  • Personal tech support from the developer – very fast response times, 5-30 minutes

Improve your productivity and your business with new features like this…

  • Add events quickly with multiple ways…Click on a day in the popup calendar or just type it into the quick add ex. Lunch with Mom 11am Sunday

    Select the text on any page like “…dinner Aug 26th at 3:30pm…” and right click to add it automatically for that date!

    Right click a webpage and add it instantly to your calendar for tomorrow or any day or time! Try it in Gmail ex. a friend emails you to play soccer tomorrow, reply to them, then right click and save it to your calendar. Screenshot: http://bit.ly/o1Qxu4. You can also use the popup calendar see video:http://youtu.be/hrrZa2egQDc

    Use Chrome’s address bar (Omnibox) to add an event by simply typing “cal” and then tab or space and your event title with the time or date – See screenshot: http://bit.ly/pmeFCU or video: http://youtu.be/owtEUtueXp4

    When viewing a Facebook event page the popup gives you the choice to add it to your calendar

  • Desktop notifications “like Outlook” when your event occurs that you can snooze and with optional voice notification: Add a cooking timer that yells out “take out pizza!” See video: http://youtu.be/kimuIJ7re8o
  • Sound and voice notification: Great for the visually impaired
  • Supports multiple calendars and Google Apps™ (for Business or Education) and hosted
  • Option to run in background even when Google Chrome is closed
  • Popup a calendar for the month, week, agenda view when clicking on the icon or customize your own view!
  • Show the current date or day or time until your next event and preview details of your future ones right on the icon
  • Lots of options that you can customize, most are free (95%) and the rest is upon donations of any amount because I’ve added those features by special requests
  • Get reminders of your contacts’ birthdays and events
  • Drag and drop events to reschedule them in the month view
  • Can also be used as a widget for the extension “Awesome New Tab Page” (ANTP)
  • Notification of events even when there is no internet connection with offline mode
  • Gray out past days or highlight weekends

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Checker Plus for Gmail – One Of The Highest Rated Google Chrome Extensions Out There

November 18, 2014

When I see a five star rating at the Google Chrome Web Store I know it has to be something good. If you are a Google Chrome browser fan and use Gmail then you must download the Google Chrome browser extension called Checker Plus for Gmail.

Before I go further, if you click this link (Checker Plus for Gmail) you will be taken to the Chrome Web Store; however, if you want to meet the author of this fantastic creation and learn more in detail about this extension, CLICK HERE …  The author’s main site also provides a forum, frequently asked questions, and other goodies that is an indicator (as a software reviewer) that the author is serious about what they do (as a trusted developer) and will continue to develop and fine tune their work. I can’t get over how good this extension is…

Due to this browser extension being very featured rich, I am going to cut to the chase and post the highlights, features and video (verbatim) as posted on the author’s site (see below); but there is one feature that I really love and that is you can configure Checker Plus for Gmail to read an incoming email to you (which is very unique).

I encourage you to take a look at this extension. It is definitely number one on my list of Chrome browser extensions at this time and is now added to my list of “Top Ten Google Chrome Browser Extensions I Can’t Live Without“…

Highlights...

  • The fastest and easiest way to manage multiple email accounts
  • One of the highest rated Chrome extensions – featured many times on PCWorld
  • Trusted developer of many extensions – more than one million satisfied users worldwide
  • Lots of features, options and updates – just read the version changes in the logs below
  • Personal tech support from me (the developer) – very fast response times, 5-30 minutes
  • Supports “Inbox by Gmail”
  • I’ll add your suggestions
  • Safer – requires less permissions and only access to Google Mail’s website

Features…

  • See the people emailing you just like in the Gmail chat notification, with an option to show their contact photos or your assigned photos for them.
  • Voice notification: If you get an email while you’re busy watching a movie or cooking dinner this extension can optionally read it out loud ie. “Jason says, dinner at my place”. It’s great for the visually impaired.
  • Option to monitor any Gmail or custom labels
  • Option to run in background when Google Chrome is closed and still get new email alerts
  • Zoom in and out of emails which have large images
  • Popup mail preview window to read, archive, mark as read or delete emails without leaving the current tab (or option to go directly to your Gmail tab)
  • Can also be used as a widget for the extension “Awesome New Tab Page” (ANTP) which supports multiple accounts
  • Desktop sound or voice notifications when new mail arrives (or add your own sounds)
  • Support for multiple Gmail and Google Apps accounts
  • Option to open “Mail to” links in your Gmail instead of your regular mail client
  • This Gmail notifier has more than 10 different icon sets, choose your favorite!
  • You change the generated voice by adding TTS (text to speech) voice extensions
  • The fast way to inbox zero. Yes that’s a thing.

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Be Ready For When The Cybercriminal That Misrepresents Microsoft Calls You

November 17, 2014

I want to start off this post by stating something I tell people, especially the elderly, who came from a generation that trusted other people.

“If you receive an unsolicited telephone call, whether it be a charity, a politician, an alarm company, your grandson is locked up in a jail in Canada, etc… where the caller is wanting money, PLEASE disconnect the call”.

What I am finding is once you get hooked by these calls you are placed on a call list that is sold to others AND the calls will perpetuate into more calls. It is like getting spammed by telephone and it gets so bad that you do not know what is real and what is not. My general rule of thumb is, when I get a phone call at my house and there is a delay of 3 seconds, GUESS WHAT? You just got disconnected.

 

One of my favorite blogging sites is TCAT Shelbyville – Technical Blog. Recently they posted an article (that I reblogged) titled, “No, you are not a Microsoft employee, no I don’t have a virus and by the way, you are definitely talking to the wrong people” that really hit home with me personally. I actually know several people, including members of my immediate family, where this fraudulent activity occurred.

The fraudulent activity I refer to is where a person (usually with a foreign accent) will randomly call you and tell you that they are a Microsoft Tech and will offer to fix your computer problems or sell you a software license. They will convince you into taking over your computer remotely and then they will go to work attempting one or all of the following:

  • Trick you into installing malicious software that could capture sensitive data, such as online banking user names and passwords. They might also then charge you to remove this software.
  • Convince you to visit legitimate websites (like http://www.ammyy.com) to download software that will allow them to take control of your computer remotely and adjust settings to leave your computer vulnerable.
  • Request credit card information so they can bill you for phony services.
  • Direct you to fraudulent websites and ask you to enter credit card and other personal or financial information there

After reading the TCAT-Shelbyville article, I started wondering if Microsoft is aware that they are being misrepresented in this manner. What I discovered is that they do know and actually have a page up on their Safety & Security Site that focuses specifically on this matter. I strongly encourage you to visit Microsoft and read, “Avoid Tech Support Phone Scams” where you will learn the following:

  • Telephone tech support scams: What you need to know
  • How to protect yourself from telephone tech support scams
  • What to do if you already gave information to a tech support person
  • Will Microsoft ever call me?

How to report this crime:

The CyberCriminals that initiate these calls know that most people will not report the crime. I suggest that if you are victim of a call such as this, especially if you find your credit card has been compromised, that you report the matter to the local authorities and contact your credit card company immediately to be issued another card.

Microsoft also encourages you to contact them, as well:

Whenever you receive a phone call or see a pop-up window on your PC and feel uncertain whether it is from someone at Microsoft, don’t take the risk. Reach out directly to one of their technical support experts dedicated to helping you at the Microsoft Answer Desk. Or you can simply call Microsoft at 1-800-426-9400 or one of their customer service phone numbers for people located around the world.

Report phone scams 

In the United States, use the FTC Complaint Assistant form.

In Canada, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre can provide support.

In the United Kingdom, you can report fraud as well as unsolicited calls.

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A Troubleshooting Tool To Delete Potentially Unwanted Software (such as adware, spyware, trojans, viruses and worms)

November 16, 2014

Recently during a software install I found myself in a hurry and noticed about halfway through the install I was authorizing third party installs (of other software) that was piggy backing the software that I really wanted to install. Needless to say I do not like the idea of software developers doing this; especially when the third party software is very questionable in nature. I know the developers work very hard and need a source of income, but they are affecting their reputation when the third party software installs are sketchy in nature. So, please; when installing any software make sure you read the initial install instructions and if there is a selection to customize the install, make sure you do that so that you can see specifically what is being installed. Anyhow, I have been testing Windows software for many years and found myself, due to being in a rush, becoming the victim. I knew immediately that I pulled the trigger on something that I did not want…

FreeFixerTo remedy my issue, where a third party start page modifier (browser hijacker) was installed, I performed research on the name of the poison I was seeing and then I ran a utility called FreeFixer to analyze and help me fix the problem.

FreeFixer

FreeFixer scans a large number of locations where unwanted software has a known record of appearing or leaving traces. The scan locations include the programs that run on your computer, the programs that starts when you reboot your computer, your browser’s plug-ins, your home page setting, etc.

Now, the catcher to FreeFixer is that following the scan that it performs (which is very extensive and impressive) it does not know what is unwanted, so it presents the scan results and it is up to you to determine what needs removed and/or set back to their default settings. The good here, following a scan by FreeFixer is that you can get more info on a suspicious file by click on the “more info” selection; AND, if you delete a selection the file selection is quarantined where you can restore from in the event you mess up.

In cases where FreeFixer is unable to delete files in normal Windows mode they are registered for delayed removal with FreeFixer’s Native Deleter, which removes the files upon the next reboot. The actual delete operation is done before the logon screen appear. The majority of malware can be deleted at this point.

In the end, I am finding that you need to have a good understanding of the Windows architecture in order to use this powerful utility. FreeFixer is definitely a tech toolbox keeper. There is a 32bit and 64bit version of FreeFixer available as a full install or portable app.

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