Download Windows 10 Preview!

Yes, yesterday Microsoft announced that Windows 10 was the name of the next version of Windows, skipping the name Windows 9. Microsoft claims that this is such an advanced release of Windows that it’s more than just one version different! These are claims that sound hard to believe, so Microsoft wants to challenge you to believe see for yourself! Today marks the release of the first public preview for Windows 10! preview.Windows.com has all of the information you need to know! The product key is listed on the top of the download page, so just visit Microsoft and download the latest version of the Windows 10 preview. There is a “preview upgrade” version available, however it embeds itself with your computer. I strongly recommend downloading the ISO version and installing it on a spare computer, separate partition, or a Virtual Machine.

It is extremely important to note that this is a technical preview. It could have some bugs and other issues, and may also be substantially different from the final version of Windows 10. Remember, the earliest Windows 8 technical previews still had a Start Menu. 2015 will likely see a consumer preview and a developer’s preview prior to the typical RTM (Release to Manufacturing) release before it gets released at retail. Stay tuned for the future!

Windows Phone introduces MyFamily parental controls

Microsoft has developed the MyFamily platform, allowing you to customize your child’s experience on Windows Phone. You can not only limit whether or not they are allowed to buy things from the store (i.e. spend your money), but you can also specify the age-ratings of the games they are allowed to play, and affords you additional auditing and safety features.

From the Windows Phone team: “My Family works with Microsoft Family Safety, a service designed to help you keep tabs on kids’ computer and online activities. If your child uses a PC or Xbox, you may already have set up a family in order to use parental controls.”

Some excellent instructions for setting up My Family can be found on WindowsPhone.com, so have that open or printed off, and then get started on WindowsPhone.com/Family.

Answering your questions: is cloud backup safe? Can I host my own cloud?

These are some common questions to a pretty abstract concept. Whenever you “back up to the cloud” there will be a server out there somewhere with your information. Whether you use Apple’s iCloud, Google’s Google Drive, Microsoft’s OneDrive, or even the well known independents DropBox and SpiderOak, or even paid “backup” solutions which offer syncing, like Mozy and Carbonite. Continue reading

3 easy steps to disable Facebook Auto-Play videos

Facebook’s new auto-playing video strategy is causing headaches. I disabled it when it was first introduced I’m shocked that, even a year later, not everybody else did. Maybe they just didn’t know how? This can make your facebook faster, keep your internet running speedier for other things, and alleviate the pressure on your bandwidth cap.

Luckily, it’s an easy fix!

  1. In the upper right hand corner, near the notifications, click the downward facing arrow, then click Settings.
  2. On the left, at the bottom, click Videos.
  3. Using the bottom drop down, change “auto-play videos” to “Off.”

Facebook Messenger isn't QUITE as bad as everyone is making it out to be

The Facebook Messenger App for Android has gotten a LOT of bad press, lately, so I wanted to clear up a few misconceptions.

Before I discuss the app itself, first, let me say I’m not on Facebook’s side of much of anything. I detest the service, I lie to it whenever possible, and I really wish the world would move on to a new platform. But as much as I dislike Facebook as a service, the Messenger app itself is getting raked over the coals for taking less information than Candy Crush! As people go around Facebook clicking “Share” and “Like” on every little thing they see, they don’t realize they are giving the people who created those Facebook pages just as many permissions as this app they are complaining about. The ACLU created the Hi, Nice to Meet You application to show just what you reveal when you click “LIKE.”

So, having said that, let’s actually look at why the app isn’t as bad as people are saying. Continue reading

How to repair Super Game Boy games missing sound

A few years ago, I bought a Super Game Boy on eBay. Certain sounds appeared to work, like hitting the L+R Buttons to bring up the menu, worked with no problem. But the games I played had no music or sounds!

Luckily, I found a forum that proposed an answer. I don’t have the electronics expertise to verify this myself (I only recently found someone who may attempt the fix for me), but several of the comments confirmed this to be a known issue and this was the correct solution! After a recent attempt to revisit the old forum, it turns out the domain has expired. I have posted the text of the solution in other places, but I wanted to archive the text as well as the image that was originally provided in the forum. See below for the fix!


click to enlarge

The author’s instructions indicate you should replace the two caps near each other with “4.7 25V” caps – and if you have a graphic glitching issues, you can replace the 3rd capacitor (just above pin 58) with a “22 6.3V” capacitor.

Video game fun with Wolfram|Alpha

Ready to get your geek ALL THE WAY on for this holiday weekend (in the States)? Go to Wolfram|Alpha and type any of the following:

graph Mario curve
graph Donkey Kong curve
graph Wario curve
graph Waluigi curve
graph Koopa curve
graph Goomba curve
graph Bowser curve
graph Sonic curve
graph Eggman curve (OR graph Robotnik curve).

Leave a comment if you find more characters to draw!

Better Know a Gamer: #35: Akbip

We haven’t done an issue of BKAG in a LONG time, and it is obvious the questions are (and were intended to be, in 2008) very Xbox centric… but perhaps it is time to update them? Well, Akbip was a good sport and made the necessary modifcations to be out 35th installment of Better Know a Gamer! If you’re interested, you can Nominate a Gamer, or even yourself, all you need is an email address! So read on and learn about Akbip! Continue reading

Guides for repairing your PSOne (Original PlayStation, PSX), and PS2 consoles

I recently picked up a PlayStation SCPH-1001 at a flea market. I heard a little rattle inside, so I talked the guy down to five bucks. I got it home, and sure enough it didn’t work. I scoured the internet and found some old links that were all dead on guides for repairing the consoles. Although I just recovered these guides and I haven’t had a chance to try them myself, forum goers of years past seemed to universally agree that these guides, originally hosted on cyber-mag.com, were some of the best. I’ve pulled them out from the good folks at Archive.org and made a few PDF’s of some of the most useful guides.

So THAT'S their plan: Wii U to allow Gamecube controllers

Super Smash Bros. Melee really spawned a generation fighting game fanatics on the Gamecube. The Wii had backwards compatibility with the Gamecube and was frequently used to play the same game with the same controller, and Super Smash Bros. Brawl supported the Gamecube controller. No such controller exists on the Wii U. A Smash Bros. player, without a Gamecube controller, might feel lost Continue reading