WeChat, QR Codes, And The Future Of Mobile

WeChat customized personal QR codes

China uses smartphones differently than anywhere else in the world. It’s a fascinating story! Understanding WeChat and why QR codes are displayed everywhere in China will give you a context to understand the importance of Google’s announcements last week. I’ll tell you about Google Assistant and Google Lens in the next article. […] continued

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Ransomware And Other Scary Monsters

Ransomware and other scary monsters

The chances are good that you weren’t affected by the ransomware attack that began Friday and is still in progress around the world. In fact, it’s very likely that it’s not a threat to you, even if you click on its evil link. I’ll tell you some of the reasons for that. […] continued

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Surface Laptops And Lessons About Desperation

Microsoft Surface Laptop

Next month Microsoft will begin selling Surface Laptops, elegant and sexy, Microsoft’s first Surface devices with a traditional clamshell design. You’ll be tempted to buy one, but in the end you won’t. Almost no one will buy  them. Microsoft will sell some Surface Laptops, of course, but sales volume will be insignificant – no shame but no bragging rights. […] continued

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Windows 10 S Will Be Microsoft’s Next Failure

Windows 10 S & Surface Laptop - failures waiting to happen

Microsoft made two big announcements this week at an education-themed press event. They’re related in a couple of ways. One common element is that Microsoft will fail at both of the new ventures it announced. I think each one is deeply flawed.

The two announcements:

•  Microsoft will soon release Windows 10 S,  a new version of Windows 10. […] continued

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You’ll Discover The Best Windows 10 Feature When You Give Away Your Computer

Reset Windows 10 to its factory settings

With only a few clicks, you can reset your Windows 10 computer back to its brand-new condition when it was pulled out of the box. It will start up with the Microsoft license agreement, ready to be used by someone new. All your personal information and files will be erased. […] continued

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Windows 10 Tip: How To Check The Health Of Your Laptop Battery

Windows 10 battery running low warning

My much-loved Thinkpad X1 Yoga was shipped to Lenovo today. I’ll be a bit twitchy and irritable until it comes back. But I couldn’t ignore the signs of old age any longer.

There comes a time when a laptop needs a new battery.

Lithium ion batteries don’t have a “memory” like older batteries but they do have life spans. […] continued

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Windows 10 Cloud & Device Independence

Microsoft Windows 10 Cloud event announcement

On May 2 Microsoft will announce a new generation of Windows for low-cost computers targeted at education. Information has leaked about some parts of that announcement and tech journalists are speculating about what it might mean. There is one thing that has not been discussed and it is crucial to the success or failure of the new venture. […] continued

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Technology Is Boring

Technology is boring

Technology in 2017 is just a bit . . . dull. There’s not much going on. You hadn’t really thought about it but now that I mention it, you know it’s true, right?

Choose your metaphor. It’s a plateau. It’s the calm before the storm. We’re in a holding pattern. We’re almost – but not quite – at a couple of tipping points. […] continued

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Microsoft Comes Unstuck In Time

Microsoft time server error

Microsoft can’t tell time.

On April 3, an odd glitch caused computers all over the world to show the wrong time. Three of my clients called me because all the computers in their offices were six minutes off. I researched it and fixed it and moved on. It was another example of Microsoft carelessness but appeared to have been fixed. […] continued

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Twenty-Five Years Of Windows

Windows 3.1 Program Manager

Windows 3.1 was released on April 6, 1992. Happy 25th birthday!

Computers ran MS-DOS 5.0 in 1992. Windows 3.1 was a separate program that ran on MS-DOS by typing WIN at a command line. There was no taskbar or Start button. Real work was still done in DOS based programs like WordPerfect and Lotus 123. […] continued

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How To Close A Hijacked Web Browser

Do not call the 800 number!

If your computer displays a message while you are browsing the Internet claiming that you have been hacked or infected with a virus, it is a lie by criminals.

Your computer is not infected with anything and you did nothing wrong.

Do not call the 800 number for “tech support.”

You are calling criminals who will lie to you. […] continued

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What To Look For In The Next Major Windows 10 Update

What to look for in Windows 10 version 1703 Creators Update

Microsoft will release the next major update for Windows 10 – version 1703, nicknamed “Creators Update” – starting April 11. There’s something important that I want you to watch.

It’s not anything new in Windows 10. Nothing important is updated or changed by the April version 1703 update. It’s a collection of fit and finish improvements, nothing more. […] continued

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Gazing Into The Abyss: Republicans Are Selling Out Your Privacy

Gazing into the abyss - Republicans are selling out your privacy

When you think about the future, you may start to suffer from “abyss gaze,” the depression that settles in when you realize that we’re all doomed. Warren Ellis coined the term in a novella named “Normal,” which tells the story of futurists who suffer nervous breakdowns after discovering that there is no hope for humanity as a result of the trends in whatever area they study. […] continued

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Windows 10 And The Slow Devices And Printers Window

Windows 10 - slow Devices and Printers window

Here’s a problem without a solution.

On some Windows 10 computers, some of the time, opening the Devices and Printers window in Control Panel takes anywhere from 90 seconds to five minutes. The green bar creeps across the empty window, as you see in the screen shot above. Eventually it finishes. […] continued

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Special! Windows 10! Now With More Ads! Unlimited Time Offer!

Windows 10! Now with more ads!

Desperation is not pretty.

Microsoft has successful cloud and enterprise divisions, but it is obviously true that some divisions of Microsoft are in a long-term decline.

  •  Windows is still the dominant computer operating system, but desktop PC sales are in a permanent downward spiral.

  •  There’s a real danger that Chromebooks will begin to steal volume laptop sales later this year. […] continued

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