Your computer is 8 years old? That's 160 in laptop years!!

One question I am often asked is “How long should my computer last?” The answer is always, “It depends.” There are many factors that play into how long you should expect to use your current computer. Our expectations change over time. The software we use becomes more bloated. The hardware degrades over time.

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There's a New Kid in Town (Chrome Books)

While we were all fighting over which laptop is better, an Apple based or a Microsoft based, Google has released their own operating system. Many computer manufacturers are now building laptops based on it as well as the traditional Windows laptop. The Chrome Book is the new kid on the block. But like a stubborn teenager, it does what it wants to do and nothing more. It has some growing up to do, but it may turn out to be the future of portable computing.

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Phuture of Phree Wi-Phi Phones

Bell System Sign

Well, maybe not totally free, but Wi-Fi is changing the way we think about communications. If you still have an old land-line type of phone at home, you are already behind the times. Cell phones have all but killed the market for home phones. No longer do you call someone's house, but now you call a person. Each person has their own cell phone and their own cell phone number. (Anyone still remember party lines where one phone line was shared among several houses?)

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Passwords

Keys

Passwords - Keys to the Information Superhighway

“Hackers nab 1.2B passwords in colossal breach, says security firm” That is the headline of an article from CNET in August of last year. So what can you do to protect yourself from password heists? Unfortunately, we are in a state of minimizing damage rather than avoiding it entirely. Those 1.2 Billion passwords, and many others from similar attacks have already been stolen. The horse is already out of the barn. The question now becomes, “What can be done to minimize the effect of this and similar password breaches?”

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PUPies and Viruses

PUPies

No, it's not time to call the vet, but if your computer is running like an overweight basset hound, it may be time to put a leash on some unwanted programs. These unwanted programs are classified depending on how they attach themselves to your computer.

Viruses are programs that attach themselves to other programs. They also replicate themselves and attempt to infect other systems.

Trojan Horses are programs that are embedded inside another program that appears to be something of value.

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