This week marks the fourth anniversary of my first column in the Albany Journal and I thank you readers for your support. As I look back, let me renew my promise in that first column. I resolved to help ordinary readers understand enough geek talk to use technology to make life easier and more enjoyable. I promised to give you enough information but not overload you with jargon and complicated language. It has been a challenge at times; some of your questions are about complicated subjects; but I’ll stand by my pledge to keep things as simple as possible (and expect you to let me know when I fall short).
Looking back there have been many significant changes in the tools of technology since that first column. Miniaturization, mobility and synchronization have driven change so that the hardware we use today is very different. The advent and maturation of 3G and WiFi have made portability and mobility available on more devices to more people and changes in the near future auger even greater change. 4G will become a reality rather than just a sales gimmick and the next standards for WiFi will significantly improve wireless traffic.
Synchronization has been in the mind of users for some time and recent advances in cloud storage and cooperation among some software and hardware vendors are beginning to pay off. You would expect to be able to synchronize like devices, but we are seeing some progress in cross platform coordination. Gee, Microsoft, Android and Apple devices talking to one another? Who would have thunk just 5 years ago?
There are also some stark changes in the questions I get; but amazingly there are still two that rank near the top. “How can I speed up my computer?” leads the all time list. A close second is “How do I get that blanket-blank malware off my computer and keep it off?” Coming in a close third is “Which updates should I accept and how do I know when to say no?” This question is being driven by the knowledge that more and more infections are coming from installed softwares other than the Operating System or the Mail Client.
One of the things I have learned from your questions and comments is that most people want to use technology and gadgets in ways that are uniquely useful to them. They are not looking for intrusions and complications. I’ll renew my commitment to bringing you solutions and recommendations that help you to manage your gadgets and have a little fun in the process.
Some of you have asked what happened to my old Website. I simply got tired of maintaining it. It was working me instead of vice versa. This week I am starting a new blog to take its place and it’s called GeekSpeak by Jim Hall. Please take a look at it: http://hallsts.com and I especially welcome your comments and suggestions while I am building the site. By the way I will also display recent issues of this column on the site in pdf format.
Thanks again readers and till next week, send your questions to: