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HARDWARE ARTICLES / RASPBERRY PI, DIY, GADGETS, AND MORE

Media center software and hardware has advanced exponentially in the last ten years but it can still be quite a pain to get a remote up and running with your unit. Today we’re looking at the Flirc IR dongle, an incredibly clever and effective way to link any remote to nearly any media center.

about 12 months ago - by  |  4 Replies

Microsoft added a hidden “Battery Report” feature to Windows in Windows 8. Generate a report to see health information about your battery, how its capacity has decreased over time, and other interesting statistics.

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Batteries don’t last forever — they only have so many charge cycles. As you use your battery, it will degrade over time and you’ll get less and less battery life from it. Eventually, you’ll want to replace a device’s battery — or get a new device with a new battery.

about 12 months ago - by  |  3 Replies

With the advent of the summer sun just starting to peek out, it’s time to whip out those running shoes and work up a sweat. This is our guide to all the the apps and gear we love to lose pounds with.

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Amazon likes to tout how their Fire TV is the fastest media streamer on the market. What they really should be touting, however, is how the Fire TV offers the most comprehensive parental protections and kid-friendly content around. Read on as we show you how to take advantage of both.

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After years of use in other countries around the world, chip-enabled credit cards are coming to the USA. Credit cards with only magnetic strips are being phased out ahead of an October 1, 2015 deadline.

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The Philips Hue system was one of the first unified smart bulb systems on the market and remains justifiably popular despite the cost. Read on as we show you how to incorporate cheaper third party smart LED bulbs into your Hue system for that great Hue ease-of-use at a lower price.

about 12 months ago - by  |  3 Replies

Roku’s line of streaming boxes are still the most popular, beating out Google’s Chromecast and the Apple TV. Roku recently refreshed their hardware, but there are still four different options to choose from — not the single option you get with competing devices.

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You can capture video (or screenshots) from any device with an HDMI cable or composite video outputs with a basic device. You could live-stream gameplay on Twitch TV with such a device, too.

about 1 year ago - by  |  3 Replies

As smartphone cameras get better and better it’s only natural that people would want to enjoy some of the trappings of proper photography with them. Read on as we show a reader how to cheaply add a remote shutter release to their smartphone camera so they can trigger the camera without jarring it, disturbing the composition, and while they’re actually in the photo.

about 1 year ago - by  |  1 Reply

It’s happened again. You were trying to answer a call while washing dishes, and your phone takes a dive straight into the sink. Getting water inside your phone is one of the most devastating ways to watch your mobile device bite the dust, but fear not, all is not lost just yet.

about 1 year ago - by  |  11 Replies

The smart bulb market is growing exponentially with new models and even companies popping up left and right. Today, however, we’re taking a look at a starter kit from the company that put smart bulbs on the map. Read on as we test run the Philips Hue Lux and see if the trend starter is still a sure buy.

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Many modern smart TVs have support for the Chromecast-like DIAL protocol built in. You can cast videos to your TV from YouTube and Netflix — on your phone or computer — without getting a Chromecast.

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As smartphones become increasingly indispensable fixtures in our lives it’s only natural to both want to take them where water is present and protect them from that water at the same time. Read on as we show you how to properly protect your phone from the hazards of a day at the beach.

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With all the progress and improvements that have been made with computer hardware, why are some things like the CMOS battery still necessary? Today’s SuperUser Q&A post has the answer to a curious reader’s question.

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You might be curious as to how newer generations of processors are able to be faster at the same clock speeds as older processors. Is it just changes in physical architecture or is it something more? Today’s SuperUser Q&A post has the answers to a curious reader’s questions.

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So you’ve got a nice big widescreen TV and an amazing home theater setup. Your speakers offer excellent sound — there’s just one problem. You want to use it while people are sleeping or otherwise busy. That means turning to headphones.

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You generally don’t need to install hardware drivers on Linux. It’ll automatically detect the hardware in your computer and set it up for you — that’s the goal. But printers can be a different story.

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YouTube has an integrated remote-control feature. Pair the YouTube app on your phone or the website on your computer with YouTube on any streaming box, smart TV, or game console for easy, Chromecast-style browsing and playback controls.

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Google’s Chromecast makes it easy to browse for videos and watch them on your TV, but what if you want to quickly pause playback without reaching for your smartphone or computer? You can now do this right from your TV’s built-in remote.

about 1 year ago - by  |  3 Replies

Google’s Chromecast allows you to launch videos and control them from your phone, cast your entire screen to your TV, and generally use a smartphone instead of a remote. You can do a lot of this with your Roku, too.

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When learning more about computers and how they work, you will occasionally run across something that does not seem to make sense. With that in mind, does emptying disk space actually speed computers up? Today’s SuperUser Q&A post has the answer to a puzzled reader’s question.

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Not every Roku channel appears in the channel store. There are quite a few hidden “private channels” you have to go out of your way to find.

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Roku devices recently gained a “screen mirroring” feature. With a few clicks or taps, you can mirror a Windows 8.1 or Android screen to your Roku. It works a bit like Apple’s AirPlay or Google’s Chromecast screen-mirroring.

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Your Roku can do more than just stream from the web. Use it to watch video files you’ve downloaded or ripped yourself, or even play your personal music collection. You can do this with a USB drive or over the local network.

about 1 year ago - by  |  7 Replies