Mail, Thunderbird, and other email clients

For some time now, the amount of junk mail clogging up my inbox has been ruinous, both in time and missed important communications. There are many methods and tricks for cutting down the junk mail load — the most extreme being setting up a new email address and closing down… Read More

Managing storage with Dropbox synching

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Looking though recent Mac-Forums posts, I read through a discussion about local versus cloud storage and how online file storage differs from online backups. The thread was relatively long, and there was still some debate and confusion about the limitations of online storage. The forum member who started the thread… Read More

Turning an iPhone into a landline handset

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Like phone booths, home-phone landlines would seem to be headed for extinction, as we shift to cellphones, Skype, texting, and the various other forms of digital communications. But cellphones get drowned in toilets and Internet connections go down at the most inopportune times. So it’s still good to have a… Read More

Extending cellphone range — sort of

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Recently, fellow editor Kathleen Atkins sent me a link to a new product that might interest those who visit the backcountry. According to a TechCruch article, tech startup goTenna will sell its communication device exclusively through sports retailer REI. The device is designed to enable cellphone texting when you’re out… Read More

Taking Firefox for iOS 2.0 for a tour

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Today, Feb. 18, Mozilla released an updated iOS version of its popular browser. That immediately caught my interest because I use Firefox on my MacBook Pro and Windows PC every day. So I downloaded the new browser onto my iPad Air, running iOS 9.2.1. (I couldn’t download it to my… Read More

The dilemma of hardware upgrading

Those who know me know that I’m a gearhead. No, not a motorhead; I’ve always had a deep interest in the latest digital technology, backpacking gear, tools, and other stuff. It’s the main reason I’ve covered computing for 25 years. But I’ve also relatively immune to the upgrade syndrome —… Read More

Adding NTFS support to Mac OS X

I’m perfectly capable of changing the oil in my truck, but I’d rather pay someone to do it. Sometimes the same holds for making a DIY system change to OS X or simply purchasing a utility to do it for you. That came up recently when I tried to connect… Read More

Why I keep Windows on my Mac

For work, I use both Mac and Windows systems. But when away from my office, I take my MacBook Pro (along with my iPad and iPhone) . Unfortunately, there are some tasks that simply can’t be done in OS X — primarily because a software vendor has opted not to… Read More

Life with a low-bandwidth connection

I recently purchased a small farm in a rural area of Washington’s Olympic peninsula. We have all the basics: heat, water, and power — but (so far) no high-speed Internet. I can live happy without the Web for a few days, as I’ve done when traveling into the backcountry, but… Read More