This week on the podcast we’re talking about all the new stuff in Windows 8.1 and Ubuntu 13.10, Android security, and the truth behind 10 prolific health myths. We’re also answering your questions about waking up effectively in the morning, planning household chores, and whether you should use the great email client Sparrow is worthwhile.
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News and Top Stories
All the New Stuff in Windows 8.1 Windows 8.1 is available as a free download today, bringing new features for both the tiled Modern UI and the traditional desktop. Here’s everything you’ll find in the newest version of Windows.
What’s New in Ubuntu 13.10 Saucy Salamander Ubuntu 13.10 is available now, and it brings a few small improvements to the desktop Linux OS—most notably a more comprehensive web search in the Dash called “Smart Scopes.” It’s also as Ubuntu Touch as the first stable release for phones.
How to Opt Out of Google Using Your Name and Face in Ads Last week we mentioned that Google is updating its terms of service so it can use your name, face, reviews, and social networking activity (like +1s) in ads displayed to your friends or anyone else Google thinks would be influenced by your opinion. Good or bad, one thing is true: It’s easy to opt out. Here’s how.
Reminder: Facebook Is Making Everyone Searchable, Check Your Privacy Facebook reminded people today that they’re removing the “Who can look up your Timeline by name?” privacy setting, which means anyone can search for your profile on Facebook.
How Secure Is Android, Really? Dear Lifehacker, I keep hearing conflicting arguments on the state of Android security. Eric Schmidt says it’s more secure than the iPhone, but people laughed at him. Plus, I keep hearing about the threat of Android malware. Who’s right? Is Android safe? Should I install security software like I do on Windows?
10 Health Myths That Just Won’t Die, Debunked by Science Everything makes you fat! Gluten-free food is the key to eternal youth! You need to poop ten times a day or you’ll die! You’ll find tons of equally ridiculous health claims around the internet, and you’ll actually believe some of them. Today we’re taking a look at 10 common myths and uncovering the truth.
10 Things You Can Do On a PC Without Ever Touching the Mouse You may not realize it, but you can do an awful lot from your keyboard. You can launch apps, switch between windows, edit text, and even clean out your email, all without ever moving your hands. Even if you’ve learned the basics, here are 10 actions that might be worth working into your muscle memory.
Questions and Answers
Matt asks, “Lately, I’ve been having trouble waking myself up in the morning. I try to wake up early in the morning and get some school work done, but can’t seem to get myself up at the time I want. I set an alarm, but end up turning it off and laying there and falling back asleep. I also sometimes find myself getting very tired at points during my shift at work and have trouble trying to stay awake. So I was wondering if there are any tips, suggestions, or things that maybe you guys do that I can do to help myself wake up and stay awake during the day without the need of things such as caffeine.” It sounds like you might not be getting enough sleep to begin with (or not enough quality sleep). Check out our guide to getting better sleep, tips for staying awake and sleeping better, and how to force yourself awake in the morning.
Ines asks, “I just moved in with my boyfriend and we’re trying to plan all our home tasks and splitting them equally. We still don’t have a system where we can write down all the tasks for that week, which leads to forgotten or ill planned tasks. Is there any platform that fulfills these needs?” A simple whiteboard or Seinfeld-style calendar would work well, but you could also make a shared list in Wunderlist or Evernote. Alternatively, there are a lot of chore-focused apps out there like Chore Buster, ChoreMonster, and HabitRPG. All of these will help you organize, but they won’t help you motivate—so if chores aren’t getting done for some other reason, you’ll need to address that head on.
Stephanie asks, “I saw that Sparrow updated yesterday and I was wondering if y’all thought it would be worth it to switch. My concern in switching is that the app won’t get any future maintenance or that Google will just all together shut it down and then I’ll have switched for nothing. I’m currently using the stock mail client and while it’s okay, there is still a lot to be desired. Thoughts?” Sparrow is still a great app, and Google bought it a long time ago, so we’re not worried about them shutting it down anytime soon—and since mail clients rarely change, it should stay working for quite some time. There’s no reason to abandon an app just because it’s dead, although we would give the official Gmail client and Mailbox a try first, since they’re both free—and very good!
Tips of the Week
How Do I Submit a Question?
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Please keep your questions as brief as possible. This means about 3-5 sentences for emails and 30-60 seconds for calls and videos. Your questions can be specific, but broader questions are generally better because they’ll apply to more people. For example, “how can I breathe new life into my old PDA?” is much better than “what can I do with an old HP iPAQ 210?” Either way, we look forward to hearing from you!