The Top Twenty
Every night a friendly robot looks through the Ask Bob logs to see which articles were the most popular over the past week. Here are the current Top Twenty, ranked by readership volume. If you missed any of these, take a few minutes to read and comment!
- Do You Have a Wifi Intruder?
Is your Internet service sometimes mysteriously slow? It's possible that you're unwittingly sharing your wifi with a stranger. But how can you know for sure if a neighbor (or a malicious hacker) has tapped into your wifi? Read on to learn how you can detect bandwidth bandits, and give them the boot...
- Here's How to Get Free Satellite TV
A reader asks: 'Can I get satellite TV for free? I have heard about free satellite TV channels one can receive with a free-to-air satellite receiver and dish. Is this true? If so, what satellite channels can I get, what equipment do I need, and is it legal?' The short answer is YES, you can. Read on to learn about free satellite TV options...
- Are Passwords Useless?
Brett Arsenault, Microsoft's chief information security officer (CISO), says passwords are 'useless' to protect against hacking and other cyberattacks. Why does the guy in charge of security for one of the largest corporations on the planet make such a statement? And what does he recommend? Read on...
- Geekly Update - 15 May 2019
Does the newly-discovered Zombieload vulnerability give hackers the key to open the doors to your private information? Is Facebook listening to your every word and using them to target ads? And can you get a new high-end smartphone with an awesome camera for under $150? 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!
- [BUSTED!] Scams, Hoaxes, Urban Legends
Have you heard? Mark Zuckerberg is giving millions of dollars to Facebook users who repost an announcement of the giveaway. Joel Osteen is charging $25 for prayer requests. Mr. Rogers always wore a long-sleeved sweater to hide the tattoos he got as a Marine Corps sniper. And McDonald’s is now offering a meatless McPickle sandwich. Read on to find out how (and why) nonsense like this spreads like wildfire online...
- Does Your Computer Need More Memory?
If your laptop or desktop computer seems sluggish, the problem may be too little RAM (Random Access Memory). But “add more RAM” is not the solution to every case of poor performance, and buying more RAM than you need or can use is just a waste of money. Read on to learn the ins and outs of RAM memory and how much RAM is the “sweet spot” is for most computers...
- How to Report a Spammer (and how NOT to)
A frustrated reader asks: 'Every day I am getting lots of unwanted spam emails, advertising nutritional supplements, fake watches and even attempts to steal my online banking passwords. I have tried filtering them out, but they keep on coming. I really want to report these crooks, but I don't know how or where. Can you help?' Read on for my tips on dealing with spammers...
- 10 Easy Ways to Destroy Your Mobile Phone
Too often, smartphones make you feel dumb. All but the most imperturbable Zen Masters among us have felt the perfectly understandable urge to wreak utter destruction upon that pocket-sized device that makes us feel so clumsy and stupid. But in most cases, a phone’s demise is deemed “accidental.” Here are ten easy ways to destroy a smartphone, and how to avoid those inconvenient mishaps…
- Free Credit Reports Online (have you checked yours?)
In the wake of massive and frequent data breaches, many people are asking how to get free credit reports, so they can check for fraudulent entries. So is it true that you can get FOUR credit reports every year for free? YES! Read on to learn how it's done, how to avoid the potential pitfalls, and pick up some tips on avoiding scams and identity theft...
- [TIPS] How to Take Great Smartphone Pictures
The ubiquitous smartphone seems to have replaced dedicated cameras among all but professionals and photography hobbyists. And the Android operating system powers 88% of all smartphones. So here are some tips for taking great photos with an Android smartphone. (Actually most of them apply to iPhones and old-school DSLR cameras as well.) Read on...
- Will MagicJack Replace Your Landline?
Here’s a common question: “I've seen those commercials for Magic Jack, a gadget you can plug into your computer to eliminate your phone bill. It sounds too good to be true... is MagicJack a scam, or does it actually work? Can it really replace my landline?” Read on for answers...
- Why Do Computers Crash? Seven Reasons Why...
It’s a royal pain when your computer locks up, freezes, crashes, or displays the dreaded "Blue Screen of Death" with some cryptic error message. This sort of problem can be devilishly difficult to diagnose, because many things can cause a computer to crash (and burn!). Here are seven common causes of computer crashes and some tips on how to deal with them...
- The Truth About Discount Inkjet Cartridges
I am often asked: 'Are discount inkjet cartridges really a good deal? I've heard they can ruin your printer, void your warranty, and that the quality is lacking. Others have told me they're great and can save you lots of money. What's the scoop on those cheap ink cartridges?' Read on for my advice about discounted, refilled or remanufactured inkjet cartridges...
- Wireless Network Security Checklist
I have a wireless router, with several computers and game consoles in my home connected to wifi, but I'm worried about the security of the wireless network. How can I make sure that nobody can secretly access my computers through a wireless connection?
- HOWTO: Get Free Satellite TV
A reader asks: 'I have heard about free satellite TV channels you can receive if you have a free-to-air satellite receiver and dish. Is this true? If so, what satellite channels can I get, what equipment do I need, and is it legal?' Read on to learn about free satellite TV options...
- Do You Need a Download Manager?
A reader asks: “I download files often, and sometimes wonder if I should be using one of those 'download manager' or 'download accelerator' programs that are promoted online. What exactly do they do, and should I use one?” Here's what you need to know...
- Wolfram Alpha: Search Engine or Answer Calculator?
Untold millions use Google as their go-to search engine, but there are others you should know about. Among all the “other” search engines, one of my favorites is Wolfram|Alpha. It’s not really a search engine in the traditional sense; it’s more like an “answer calculator.” Wolfram|Alpha surfaces online through licensing deals that make its technology available through Google Search, Bing, Siri, and other well-known brands. But it's best to experience it directly. Here’s a look at what Wolfram|Alpha is, and can do for you...
- Is Resetting Your PC a Good Idea?
A despairing reader writes, “I’ve managed to mess up my Windows PC to the point of no return. I give up, and now I just want to reset it to its factory-fresh condition and start all over. How do I do that?” Read on and I'll tell you how, and why you might NOT want to do this...
- Oops! I Dropped My Phone AGAIN
For a variety of reasons, millions of phones are “drowned” each year. When your phone stops working after falling into the sink, toilet, bathtub, swimming pool, muddy puddle, lake or the ocean, can it be saved? In many cases the answer is “yes,” if you do the right things and don’t do the wrong things. Hold the rice... here's what you need to know if your device is dunked, and the tale of my unsuccessful attempt to teach my phone to swim...
- Missing Emails? Tweak Your Spam Filter
Email spam is an annoying fact of online life that can never be avoided entirely. No matter how good your defenses, an unwanted message is going to appear in your inbox occasionally. Spam is irritating but relatively harmless if you simply delete it. The flip side of spam can be more serious. What if a legitimate message that you DO want to receive gets trapped in your spam filter? Here's the answer...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 4 Mar 2009
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- The Top Twenty (Posted: 4 Mar 2009)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved