A Nanosecond

You’ve probably heard of the term “nanosecond”, which is a billionth of a second. But perhaps you, like me, have trouble getting your mind around anything that says “billionth”. But leave it to a lady to really explain something in a manner I — and you — can easily understand.

Here is a short video wherein Admiral Grace Hopper explains a “nanosecond” using a piece of wire. Interesting. Take a look.

Jim Hamm


ATM Touch ID Withdrawals

For travelers, withdrawing money from ATMs is a normal process, but one is often worried about card skimming when doing that. Here is an article describing a process of using an iPhone and Touch ID to make a withdrawal of funds from your bank account. Pretty slick, but Chase bank, which we use, isn’t mentioned yet. I’m sure eventually they will be.

Jim Hamm

Internet Speed Test

Occasionally you may want to check your internet speed to see if you are getting close to what you are paying for from your ISP. Perhaps you may use Speedtest.net: http://www.speedtest.net/? This is a good site, and I’ve used it many times.

There are others, and I just came across one that is simple, fast, and powered by Netflix: https://fast.com/ . I compared both sites on my download speed, and they’re close, but not exactly the same, as you would expect.

However, if you just want a quick test of your download speed, you might give fast.com a try.

Jim Hamm

Upgrade Now to macOS Sierra?

If you are the adventuresome type (or perhaps a bit foolish, or brave, depending on your perspective), and can’t wait until macOS Sierra is released this fall, here is an article describing how to do the upgrade now. If you should decide to try this, as the article clearly states, back up, back up first.

As for me? Initially I thought — yes, I’ll give it a try. Then, I came to my senses and decided to wait until it is released.

Jim Hamm

Google Tracking

Of course you know that if you use Google they track the websites you visit. And tailor ads accordingly. Now, Google has added another tracking “feature”. Read about it here.

In the article, if you click the link “New Features for Your Google Account”, you may see your picture in the page that opens up (I did). Google then explains what they’re doing. One ‘nice’ feature of this is that one has to opt in, instead of opting out.

So, read on and decide what you will do.

Jim Hamm

Start-up Drive

I recommend that you download the free app “Disk Inventory X” and run it. This app will show you in graphical format what is taking up space in your computer in places you don’t even know about.

It looks like this when you run it:

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 8.06.26 AM

Each block on the right is an individual item or folder. The larger the block, the more disk space that item uses.
Notice that when you click on a square on the right it shows you what that item is on the left. And if you click on an entry on the left, it highlights a square on the right.

And there’s a sidebar on the far right that lists all the items by size, largest first:PastedGraphic-1 jpeg
When I ran this on my computer, it showed a huge block in a place on my computer that is for system files. That huge block was nothing more than a folder full of temporary files. Any file ending in .tmp can be deleted (some won’t delete because they are in use by an app at the time), so I deleted the contents of that folder (may require administrator privileges), and I recovered over 100GB of space on my computer.

John Carter


PDF Pen – an ebook by Take Control Books

John Carter sent this posting:

A message from Adam Engst of TakeControlBooks.com:

Good day, MUG friends!

I presume I don’t have to explain why PDF is useful or wax poetic about how you can’t turn around on the Internet these days without running into one. But if you want a PDF editing and manipulation tool that sits between Apple’s free Preview and Adobe’s $450 Acrobat Pro DC, look no further than Smile’s $74.95 PDFpen and $124.95 PDFpenPro. There’s even an $19.99 iOS companion in PDFpen for iPad & iPhone.

To help PDFpen users make the most of their apps, we’ve just released Michael Cohen’s Take Control of PDFpen 8, with 188 pages of comprehensive documentation. Get the full information about the ebook here.


Eero Router

If getting good wifi reception throughout your house is a problem, you may be interested in  this article. It discusses one person’s use of a new router system: Eero. I had previously read of this wifi system becoming available, but this is the first comprehensive review I’ve read. And here are further comments on Eero.

Eero is perhaps a bit pricey compared to other routers, but if you have a wifi problem and this solves it, perhaps it’s worth the extra cost.

Jim Hamm