Life Hacks – Spoken Edition
Summary: Daily weblog on software and personal productivity recommends downloads, web sites and shortcuts that help you work smarter and save time. A SpokenEdition transforms written content into human-read audio you can listen to anywhere. It's perfect for times when you can't read - while driving, at the gym, doing chores, etc. Find more at www.spokenedition.com
Email is something that consistently absorbs a lot of my day. I start everyday checking and responding to email, but as the day progresses, find myself checking my inbox pretty much constantly from my phone and computer. This week Fast Company made an interesting suggestion on how to combat that problem: Using an out of office message. One of the best pieces of advice in terms of not getting distracted by email is to only check your email at certain times.
Ah, there’s nothing like zooming down the highway on a bright, sunny day—wind in your hair, sunglasses on, and... all of a sudden you come to a screeching halt in a traffic jam. As you sit in traffic, it’s pretty easy to succumb to the urge of switching to a lane that appears to be moving faster.
When I was in the early stages of my various careers—both as an executive assistant and later, when I retooled as a freelance writer—I was all about the overdelivery. I had read in some business book that the secret to becoming a valued employee was to always turn things around a little bit faster and a little bit better than expected. To go the extra mile, if you don’t mind the cliché. And I did become a valued employee—and, later, a valued freelancer.
If you’re someone who has lost hours, if not days, watching old TV clips from your childhood on YouTube, block off some time in your calendar, because you’re about to lose another chunk of your adult life. The Internet Archive—aka the Wayback Machine—now has more than 20,000 VHS recordings available to view for free on its website.
Dunkin’ is offering customers a little bit of an incentive to grab a cup of coffee on Friday mornings: free donuts. The donut chain is launching “Free Donut Fridays” for the month of March. Customers can score a free donut of their choice, including the ‘Lucky Shamrock Donut,’ every Friday when they purchase any beverage.
Finding parking is always a hassle, but perfectly parallel parking? That seems almost impossible. If you street park a car in a large city, you may dread every time you switch on your blinkers and start to back up. So, in order to ease all this pain and frustration, we teamed up with our dear friends at Jalopnik to put together this easy video guide on how to parallel park like a pro. Our car expert, Andrew P.
Starting October 1, 2020 you’re going to need a Real ID or a passport to board any domestic flight in the United States. If you don’t already have one (a Real ID will have a gold or black star in the top-right corner), then acquiring one can be a potentially long and painful process. Since everyone needs a new ID by October, lines at local DMVs have gotten pretty overwhelming.
Your USB peripherals may be making your PC vulnerable to hackers. The data security firm Eclypsium reports that the majority of Windows and Linux-based peripherals use “unsigned” firmware that leaves them open to all manner of attack—ransomware, spyware, and even full-on device takeovers.
Your child really is a special, fantastic little human. They’re an incredibly poised dancer or outgoing in a way you could never be or gifted in math. You know your kids are great; you just want to make sure they know how great they are. And it’s natural to want to praise them for all the wonderful, impressive things they do. But if we over-praise, we may actually be harming their self-esteem over time.
Emojis add a little personality to your messages and social media posts, and there are so many of them to pick from that they’re practically their own language at this point. Even then, sometimes you’ll find that there isn’t one that quite fits what you’re trying to say. Thankfully, Android users will soon be able to mix and match two different emojis to create new ones, all thanks to the Gboard keyboard app’s new “Emoji Kitchen” feature.
Few things eat through data caps as quickly as a new season of your favorite Netflix show, but Android users can now reduce the app’s impact on their monthly data limits without reducing video quality. That’s all thanks to the the open-source AV1 video codec, which Netflix now supports for Android streaming.
If you’re paying for your YouTube TV subscription through Apple’s App Store, now’s the time to switch your payment method. YouTube recently announced that it’s planning to drop support for billing via Apple in March. Come March 13th, if you have a YouTube TV subscription that uses the App Store as its form of payment then your account will be automatically canceled, and you’ll lose your DVR.
At some point, I decided to go all-in on having Google Home devices around. I love being able to ask what the weather is, set timers and reminders, and figure out how old an actor is by just asking, so much so that there’s a Google Home device in almost every room of my home now. For the rooms that don’t have one, a Mini is likely close enough for it and pick up my voice.
If you get a text from someone claiming to be your bank, don’t click on the link. A new mobile phishing scam is texting people in the US and Canada claiming to be your bank. When you click on the included link, you’ll be taken to a website that may look like your bank’s website, but is actually a way to steal your login credentials.
Movie theaters can be an overstimulating experience for just about anyone. There’s the larger-than-life action, the permeating smell of buttery popcorn and the volume cranked up to a ridiculous level. But for a child who has sensory processing disorder—or who is sensory-sensitive for other reasons—it can be such an overwhelming experience that parents may choose to avoid it completely.