Geekly Update - 19 March 2020

Category: Tech-News

Is the rollout of 5G wireless technology a sneaky way to spread viruses and help the Illuminati control your mind? Will artificial intelligence help you do yard work and office work at the same time? And what's the best way to help your neighbors during a time of crisis? Get answers in today's Geekly Update -- it's jam-packed with the latest tech news. This issue is guaranteed to make you 146% smarter -- you'll see why. Read, think, and, comment!

The AskBobRankin Geekly Update

The Nextdoor app helps to bring neighbors together, and they've launched a new feature called Help Map, an interactive map of your neighborhood where you can mark yourself as someone who can pitch in for neighbors who need it. Users can specify the types of errands or support they can offer to elderly and at-risk neighbors.

Exposure to blue light from computers and smartphones can impact circadian rhythms, causing sleep problems. But there are some innovative products on the market to help. Livho blue light filter glasses ($15) promise to improve your sleep and reduce eye strain and sensitivity while you're using your gadgets. And this Acer 23.6-inch KG241Q monitor incorporates AcerVisionCare to reduce eye strain and shield your eyes from damaging blue light. It has Full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution, and can connect to your computer via HDMI or Display Port cables. Amazon is currently offering a $50 discount, so you can get one for $149.99 with free Prime Delivery.

Internet providers are taking steps to help people stay connected during the current difficulties. AT&T is waiving fees for going over data caps, and providing home internet users with unlimited data. Verizon is waiving late fees and opening their Wi-Fi hotspots to all Americans for the next 60 days. T-Mobile and Sprint are providing unlimited data on all mobile plans for the next 60 days, and 20GB of its mobile hotspot service for the next 60 days.

Comcast Internet Essentials, a service aimed at low-income households, will increase speeds from 15 to 25 Mbps for all customers. New customers will receive two months of free service.

Geekly Update 03-19-2020

Lots of people are working from home due to the current situation, and that means online group chats may be interrupted by barking dogs and rustling potato chip bags. But Microsoft Teams had added some AI to the mix that will detect your voice and filter out other sounds. So now you can use your leaf blower while staying in touch with co-workers.

Dave Limp, Amazon's hardware chief for the Ring video doorbell, says the company "continues to believe that when you add Ring to a neighborhood, crime is reduced." But stats obtained by CNET from Ring's police partners indicate minimal impact on crime from the technology.

EU officials are asking Netflix to slow down video streaming so the Internet doesn't overload. The company has yet to respond to the request to limit HD streaming in favor of standard definition.

The Verge says "Apple has finally admitted that Microsoft was right about tablets." The proof, they say, is that the iPad Pro has morphed over time to become more and more like the Surface Pro. Both now have detachable keyboards, adjustable stands, trackpads, styluses, and mouse support.

Microsoft now has 1 billion active devices running Windows 10. The company just announced having reached the goal, with a billion users across 200 countries. Windows 10 is running on over 80,000 different types of computers, from 1,000 different manufacturers.

There's a lot of misinformation about 5G and C0VID-19. So of course, some conspiracy theorists are mashing it all together and blaming the virus outbreak on 5G technology. Here's why that's ridiculous.

Your thoughts on these topics are welcome! Post your comment or question below...

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Most recent comments on "Geekly Update - 19 March 2020"

Posted by:

19 Mar 2020

MS has over 1B users. AND every one of them/us enjoy BSOD, black screens and constant problems that force us to unwind the updates.

Way to go MS.

Posted by:

Jonathan Baker
19 Mar 2020

Only one out of a billion, but, I have not had any problems with any updates issued by MS for Windows 10. The OS seems to be the most stable of all that have been released by MS. all the way back to Windows 3. Just sayin' 8^)

Posted by:

Dave Berry
19 Mar 2020

We Canadians have come up with something called Caremongering to assist neighbours:

Posted by:

Ken H
19 Mar 2020

Wrong Len, I have only seen the BSOD twice in the 4 years Win10 has been my OS of choice and both times the problem was quickly solved by a restart. Never had a problem with ANY update.

Bob, thanks again for the great information, I only wish people who believe this conspiracy nonsense were the least bit amenable to scientific facts. I have a couple of friends who spout this BS and don't want to hear any facts.

Posted by:

19 Mar 2020

Windows Update kept trashing my system and all my attempts to disable update failed, so I switched to Linux. I still use the windows computer for some programs that work well in the windows environment (none of them made by Microsoft) but I have not connected the computer to the internet for half a year. Nevertheless I am still affected by Microsoft malware. Programs that competed with inferior Microsoft products have been removed or deeply hidden (including Chrome, which I no longer use). I still am able to use Free Commander, essential for some of my projects.

Good luck to those of you who have no problems with Windows, but I'll never go back unless they restore control of the system to the user, including the ability to remove all traces of the touchscreen interface and their imitation Siri.

Posted by:

19 Mar 2020

Internet access is very important right now.With a lot of people working from home and other remote locations,reliable service is key to a successful day.All it takes is one significant failure to stop it all. With some of these ISPs,I am not assured service will be their top priority.

Posted by:

Robert A.
19 Mar 2020

Windows 10 has a user setting to change the color temperature on the monitor screen from the standard bluish-white to a slight brownish appearance at a certain time in the early evening, just before darkness, to combat those blue light issues that may affect sleep. Being someone that is on the computer, more often than not, in the evening, with that setting on, I have no problem falling asleep after an hour, or so, of some late night surfing.

Posted by:

20 Mar 2020

Windows 10 Night Light works great. It adds a warm tone to the screen for late evening viewing. You can set your options by typing Night Light in the search box on your Taskbar.
Then you can control it by the Notifications Panel, Taskbar, far right. If you don't see it, click Expand.
Several months ago it didn't work properly. But recently it is working well.

Posted by:

Stephen Earle
20 Mar 2020

Read you all the time, Bob, and you seem to be pretty on top of things, so I'm surprised you didn't suggest f.lux (f.lux: software to make your life better It runs on Windows and it's free as air. It also works great - I've been using it for several years now. Tell the program the type of ambient lighting you have and where you live, and your eyes are good to go. Sunrise and set are tracked for automatic adjustment. Fullscreen override for watching movies, etc. Several other adjustments and options are available to play with. Try it, your eyes will thank you and your wallet will be fatter.

Posted by:

20 Mar 2020

Thanks Robert and Jeri. As I am virtually housebound I spend a great deal of time on the computer and sometimes have trouble sleeping so I've already scheduled Night Ligtht. And no I've never had any significant problem with Windows 10.

Posted by:

20 Mar 2020

Since about a year after Microsoft offered the "insiders" program, I have been using Windows 10. I stopped being an active insider about a year ago, but i still use Windows 10. It has been the best OS Microsoft has ever released for me, and I started with MS products with MS-DOS 3.xx

In about 1998 or very early in 1999 I started experimenting with a variety of Linux distributions. The first one that worked well for me was Mandrake Linux. I used it through all of its permutations to the present day with Mageia Linux.

I like both OS's for differing reasons, but recently, Windows 10 has been as stable for me as Mageia Linux! In my opinion, Microsoft is doing a very good job with Windows 10. Think about how few users have issues, compared with the 1 billion plus user base they now boast of :)


Posted by:

20 Mar 2020

I have used Windows since it came on 13 floppies (great fun installing) and am really happy with Windows 10 - mine updates automatically and so far, no problems. Best version ever....

I use the night light setting for my monitor - works well. I also use a similar setting on my iPad when reading e-books.

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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Geekly Update - 19 March 2020 (Posted: 19 Mar 2020)
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