Monday, December 14, 2015

More Two-Factor Authentications

I've recently added two-factor authentication for my Amazon and Dropbox accounts.   After it's setup, I just enter, one time, the 6-digit code displayed by my Google Authenticator app on any new device, and I'm doubly protected.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Mushroom Farmer

I expected to get a bunch of little mushrooms growing from this mini farm, but got one huge, and still growing, monster.  Still growing a mushroom in a cardboard box is pretty cool.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Silicone Spray

We use this stuff on our shower curtain bars, door hinges and any place that spiders want to spin their webs.  But the best use recently was getting a metal cocktail shaker unstuck. A couple squirts ... wait for it ... and it easily slid apart.  Simply amazing stuff.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Double-Click The Fill Handle

I work in Excel analyzing data ... a lot.  Copying and pasting a formula into thousands or ten of thousands of rows has been a slow, thorn-in-the-backside, operation for years.  Then today I run across this "fill handle", which reduces my efforts to a single double-click.  I don't know if I want to jump for joy at all the hours I'll save or weep a bucket of tears for all time I've already wasted.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Velcro to the Rescue

With my power strip laying on the floor, the cleaning folks would, occasionally and accidentally, turn off the power to my home office equipment.  The simple solution was to mount the power strip under the desk using some Velcro.  It also makes hides much of the cable mess.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Word - Toggle Upper and Lower Case

This old dog learned an old trick today.  I needed a quick way to take some mixed case text and make it all uppercase.  Fortunately this old dog knows how to Google, and Google knows about everything.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Split Names

Another handy add-on from the world of Google Docs.  It takes a name, including various prefixes and suffixes, and splits them into new columns based on your choices.  Another tedious task gone forever.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Pipe and Clip

I just found this little time-saving tip.  You can run any DOS command and send its output to the clipboard for an easy Paste.  No more Edit ...Mark, highlighting and pressing Enter.  Even more useful for DOS commands that produce lengthy output.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

MacBook Air Anniversary

My MacBook Air is just over three years old now, still runs great, gets free OSX upgrades and never once has had a virus removed or the operating system re-installed.  I'll stay living in a house without Windows.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Call Me Maurice

My most recent t-shirt addition, which a few people might get, is a line from The Steve Miller Band's song "The Joker".  And no, "pompitous", as in the "pompitous of love" is not a real word.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Ice Trough

Not really sure why Parlay Social in Lexington fills the trough in the men's room with ice, other than to pass the time watching it melt.  Sort of like little boys and snow, I guess.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Add Rows & Columns

This Google Sheet add-on fixes one of the bigger annoyances, that being adding multiple rows or columns to a spreadsheet, which takes repeated insert steps.  Now you just select the number you want and be done with it.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

SnapPower Chargers Installed

I've been waiting since April (to be fair, it was a KickStarter project) for a pair of SnapPower Chargers to stylishly add USB outlets, freeing up a needed power outlet.  True to their word, it's a snap to install, the only hitch being I had to install it upside down since the outlets were wired with ground on the left instead of the right.  For my house, that's par for the course.

Monday, September 21, 2015


The main purpose, apparently, of the Caps Lock key is to be accidentally pressed and WRITE A WHOLE BUNCH of letters in the wrong case, causing the BACKSPACE key a lot of extra WORK.

Learn how to AVOID the frustration at this link.  You can totally turn it off, make in another SHIFT key (MY CHOICE) or put it to SOME OTHER task.

Friday, September 18, 2015


Finally, a decent password generator for us normal people (OK, that might be a stretch in my case).

It says simple, but I'll bet it's more difficult than what you're currently using now.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Chicago Electric Power Tools

At $50, this bad boy has become my favorite power tool.  You can pay 4-5 times as much for the name brands, but this is more than enough for this weekend home warrior.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Dueling Toilets

This takes the girl's trip to the bathroom together to the next level.  When the wait staff at Parlay Social in Lexington, Kentucky was asked why they built this, they explained that so many women go to the powder room together, they thought this would be a good idea.  Hum...

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Amazon Prime Downloads

You can now download, to your smart-phone or tablet only, Amazon Prime movies and TV shows. My airplane time just got a little better.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015


This handy Google Docs add-on makes addressing an envelope a snap.  Start with a blank document, click Add-ons, Envelopes and your envelope size.  Your document is formatted to the right size with input fields for the addresses.

Monday, August 24, 2015

M Is For Marshmallow

Continuing the line of tasty names for its Android operating system, Google follows Lollipop (v5.0) with Marshmallow (v6.0).  Now the wait begins for all its creamy goodness.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Remove Blank Rows

This Google Sheets add-on makes the task of removing blank rows, which occurs fairly often in my life, a snap.  My old method was to select one or more blank rows, delete them, select some more, delete them, over and over again.  Tedium and a useless waste of time has been replaced with a few seconds effort.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Change Case

Change case is a handy Google Docs Add-on that can perform six different changes on selected text, as shown below. If the last two are unfamiliar, sentence case is when you only capitalize the first letter of the first word and title case capitalizes the first letter of each word.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Custom Select Hardware

I was in need of an additional cutlery divider and found this beauty at Custom Select Hardware. Simple to cut down to the size needed, just remove some screws from the back, cut with a table saw and reassemble.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Cigars International

You'll pay at least double to buy cigars in a retail shop.  The best prices I've found are at Cigars International.  They ship out of eastern Pennsylvania and their 2-8 day shipping always arrives in 2 days.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Slideshare is one of my go-to research sites.  It contains millions of presentations covering just about any imaginable topic.  Why reinvent the wheel on that next presentation you need to give when this wealth of information is right at your fingertips?

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Query Express

Warning:  Techie Stuff Ahead!

Recently I was in need of a free (I love free) tool to perform a few SQL queries against a suspect database.  Since I'm nowhere near being a DBA (DataBase Administrator), and if you watch me type SQL queries that becomes completely obvious,  I don't have those tools available like the real pros do.  Query Express was the answer to my need, at my favorite price ($0).

Monday, July 27, 2015

Google Drive For Office

Google has released a small plug-in for Microsoft Office that connects into your Google Drive, making it easier to use the two together.  Who says we can't all get along?

Friday, July 24, 2015

Taj Ma Garaj

The Taj Ma Garaj is the coolest place to host a party, chock full of Posche's, VW's and other cars, and walls painted with memories and humor.  Who would believe this gem, which most people have never heard of, would be located in downtown Dayton Ohio?  If you get the chance to go to the Taj, don't miss it.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Bloom County 2015

Opus has returned!

Berkeley Breathed has brought back one of my favorite comic strips, posting them on his Facebook page.  It's been 25 years since Opus, Milo, Cutter John, Steve Dallas and Bill the Cat graced the meadows of Bloom County.  Awesome!

Monday, July 20, 2015

The Pub Passport

One of the best deals in recent years was my Pub Passport.  For $10 I received the passport which contained the 55 beers I needed to drink to reach the World Traveler level and $4 pints for life.  Then after visiting all the open Pub locations, I attained Premier Pub Traveler status and $3.50 pints for life.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015


IMDB, the Internet Movie DataBase, is my go-to website and iPad app for watching upcoming movie trailers, find other movies an actor has played in, check out a biography, or just check out who played a bit part in a movie I saw as a kid.

Monday, July 13, 2015

That Makes No Sense

Is the world overcrowded? That's the subject of a recent article I wrote called "That Makes No Sense" which explores this question with some basic math.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Apple Battery Charger

This is my favorite AA battery charger.  Apple seems to be the only company that understands that positive always goes up or always goes in first.  It's the simple things, like not having to put on glasses to do a little task, that I appreciate.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Wine Away

There are few things in life that are just shy of a miracle.  Wine Away is one of them.  It's saved couches, wedding dresses and carpets from major red wine spills.  I don't even flinch when a glass is spilled.  Wine Away eliminates every trace.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Transparent Images

Transparent images have no background, which makes them better looking when you're creating a party invite, birthday card or that presentation for work.  Adding the word "transparent" to your image search make them snap to find.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Google Custom Search Engine

If you frequently search a set of web sites, for example your favorite gardening web sites, you can create a Google Custom Search Engine of your very own to minimize that effort.  List as many sites as you want, as granular as you want, and your engine will just scour those instead of the entire Internet.  Then share it with your like-minded friends using a public URL.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Trying Your Shoes

For about 40 years of my life I tied my shoe laces incorrectly.  Then after buying new dress shoes and unable to keep them tied, I searched around until I found this web site, which explained the problem and the simple solution.  "Left over right, then right over left" has worked ever since.

Friday, July 3, 2015


OpenDNS has a free (I love free) service that can lock out adult content, malware and other bad stuff. Simple as changing your DNS addresses to and  I suggest doing that on your router so everyone gets the protection.

Thursday, July 2, 2015


Who wouldn't want to go through inkjet cartridges at a slower pace?  EcoFont purports to save printer ink and your cash using fonts that have teeny, tiny empty holes in them, not visible to the human eye. You can download Vera Sans regular for free (I love free), but the larger collection will set you back $25, or roughly one ink cartridge.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

IFTTT - Turn On WiFi

Ever turned off your smart-phone's WiFi only to forget to turn it back on when you get home, then wonder a few days later why you're burning through more data this month?  BTDT (Been There, Done That).  IFTTT (IF This Then That) has a recipe to solve that.  You enter your home address as your area and then whenver you get there your IFTTT client will make sure your WiFi is on.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Clean Mac Keyboard

My Mac's keyboard was a mess.  Accumulated fingerprint boogers left brown residue on most of the keys.  This YouTube video shows a nice solution (pun intended), using a Tide To Go stick to moisten each key, wait 10-15 seconds, then wipe them off.  I removed the batteries first to avoid any shocking moments.  Probably would work on any keyboard, but haven't tested any.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Amazon Echo Available To All

The wait is over!!  At least until mid-July.

From playing music to timing my hamburgers to a perfect medium, this is the coolest piece of technology I have in my house.  Just a matter of time before I buy another one for the second floor.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Google Doodles History

Doodles, like this animated celebration of Teacher's Day 2015 in El Salvador, spice up the normally sparse Google search page somewhere in the world on pretty much a daily basis.  Google collects them at the following link and makes them searchable.  Must be one of the coolest jobs in the world.

Teacher's Day 2015 (El Salvador)

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Avoid SourceForge

SourceForge was one of the best places to find and download free (I love free) software, however in the last couple years they are have taken to some tactics to get junkware loaded on your PC.  A number of the most popular developers,such as VLC (Media Player) and GIMP (Image Editor), have left and others are exiting as well.  I recommend avoiding SourceForge until they clean up their act.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


I like this free (I love free) Google Chrome extension that can replace the browser's normal web page formatting, which is ugly and wasteful, with a cleaner and condensed version.  Install, then click on the little green leaf at the top right of your browser window to launch CleanPrint.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Amazon Box Advertising

I received my first Amazon shipment in a Minions box.  Aside from just being more colorful than their brown boxes, it's another example of turning the ordinary into a new revenue stream.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Split View

New to Apple's OS X 10.11 "El Capitan" release is Split View, a feature I think I'll make use of quite often on my 23" monitor.  Split View allows a pair of side-by-side windows to act as one, particularly useful for cuts-and-pastes or comparing two versions of the same document.  10.11 isn't available until the fall (I hate waiting).

Get a complete review of what's new at this link.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Harry's Blades

I love the shave my Gillette razor delivers, but hate the per blade price.  For about half that price I'm trying Harry's Blades, delivered free (I love free) to my door.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Firefox Reader View

I spend a lot of time reading articles through a web browser and sometimes all those ads and videos and sound tracks just annoy me to no end.  Firefox's Reader View renders a page without all those distractions, offering a clean view by clicking the "open book" icon, pointed at below.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Apple June 2015 Event

If you own an AppleTV and want to watch this month's keynote from Apple's WorldWide Developer Conference on your big screen, it's as easy as selecting "Apple Events" on your main menu.  The two hour event covers upcoming releases iOS 9, OS X 10.11"El Capitan", watchOS 2 and Apple Music.