Review - Unlimited Syncing Between Devices

Posted: May 29, 2012

UPDATE: Now that Cubby is out of Beta the feature that really set them apart from the other online cloud storage sites below, namely, unlimited syncing between computers, is no longer free. You have to pay at minimum of $7/month (for 100GB storage) to access that feature. I no longer recommend this as a free cloud storage service as Dropbox and Copy can do exactly the same thing (and they both make it much easier to get extra free space) and SpiderOak is probably more secure albeit somewhat more difficult to use.

New Chrome Devices - Chromebooks and Chromebox

New Chrome Devices

I was very fortunate in receiving one of the original CR-48 chromebooks when Google was beta testing them. I still use it every day - it is a wonderful device for browsing the internet, email, even watching online videos. It can start to stutter a little with 1080p quality video, or with lots of media heavy tabs open, but other than that it is amazingly powerful and versatile. It is the only thing I take when on trips - the built in 3G is very nice. Now that google drive is being implemented into the OS its even better.

I am very excited about the announcement of the new chrome hardware today. I am thinking about getting a Samsung Series 3 Chromebox for a cheap home theater PC. I think the onboard graphics should be plenty to play online HD video.

Update: found this review from Engadget of the chromebox. Looks like it handles video well!

How to print any document from your Kindle Fire

Posted: May 28, 2012

Currently, there is not a good selection of applications to print documents from your kindle fire.  But, with a little bit of work, you can print documents from your Kindle Fire or any device for free using the following method.

  1. A mac computer that is connected to a printer.
  2. A Kindle Fire. Note: this will also work with any device as long as you can add the document to SugarSync - any computer, tablet, or smartphone.
Step 1:
Open a SugarSync account. If you already have one, proceed to the next step.  Note: if you prefer, you can use the same instructions but substitute Dropbox as long as you have it sideloaded on your Kindle - Sugarsync is being used here because it is supported and can be downloaded from the Amazon App Store on the Kindle Fire.

Step 2:
Download the SugarSync app from the Amazon App Store on to your Kindle Fire.

Step 3: 
Download SugarSync for your mac. Now, find the "Magic Briefcase" folder - it should be in your documents folder.  Open the Magic Briefcase and create a folder in it named "Print."

Step 4:
On your mac launch the application "Automator."  When it opens and asks for the type of workflow, choose "Folder Action" and then choose the folder you created in step 2, "Print," under the "Folder Action receives files and folders added to" menu.

Step 5:
Using the search function in Automator, type in "print" and drag "Print Finder Items" to the right into the workflow list.

Step 6:
Using the search function of Automator, type in "delete" and drag "Move Finder Items to Trash" into the workflow beneath "Print Finder Items" so that it looks like this.

Step 7:
Save your workflow, exit Automator, and you should be done!

Now any document you put in the "Print" folder of your magic briefcase will print automatically as long as your mac is turned on and connected to the internet. You can put documents into your "Print" folder from your Kindle Fire or any android device. It will then move the document to the trash (if you would like the documents moved to a printed or completed folder you can do that by creating another folder and replacing step 6 with "Move finder items" to your designated folder instead of the trash.

Student Loans

Posted: May 15, 2012

If any of you have student loans and have not already consolidated them, you should really look into this student loan consolidation program from the Federal Government.  If you have a Department of Education Loans (FFEL) and some are serviced by the Department of Education and others by a commercial lender (bank) you should be eligible for a 0.25% interest reduction.  That doesn't sound like much, but it can make a big difference in the long run.  If eligible you should receive an email from the Department of Education asking if you would like to participate - don't ignore it as just another email about your loans!