TOZO T6 true wireless earbuds review - Good bang for $50 inc touch volume control, good bass and IPX8 waterproofing

Date Published: Fri, 24 Jan 2020 16:16:52 +0200

This is an interesting review which stands out for ticking all the boxes I could think of, and at $50 is then pretty good value for money:
* IPX8 waterproofing for case and earbuds
* Wireless charging fo case (and USB-C plug option)
* 6 hours play time and another 24 hours in case
* Touch control instead of button
* Volume can be controlled from earbud (not many do this)
* Good bass (again something sometimes lacking in true wireless ear buds)

The reviewer rates it 4.5/5 and I see from Amazon's reviews also there is a 4.5/5 for over 3,000 ratings. One question answered on Amazon is yes you can use a single earbud at a time (but naturally you'd lose the volume up/down which works with both earbuds in use).

If I'd not bought my BlitzWolf earbuds a few months back I'd very likely have bought these now. The price also just hits the sweet spot.

See https://www.androidcentral.com/tozo-t6-review

#technology #hardware #audio
#^TOZO T6 review: Don't ignore this incredible $50 AirPods clone

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Yes, they look exactly like Apple AirPods, but the TOZO T6 represents some of the best value you can find in the true wireless earbud space. Here's our full review.

Librem 5 phone hands on - a Totally open source phone shows the cost of being different - It's not finished, but many of the basics for an open source smartphone are here

Date Published: Fri, 24 Jan 2020 15:41:35 +0200

It is hard to do something truly different in the smartphone industry. Companies, especially smaller companies, are all working from the same parts bin with the same manufacturing partners. You take your Qualcomm SoC, your Samsung display, and your Sony camera sensor—and you take a flight to China and visit Foxconn, which, in addition to manufacturing, will even do engineering for you if you want. Smartphones are so samey because they have an established, for-hire supply chain that has a certain way of doing things, and it's much cheaper, faster, and easier if you just "go with the flow" and do what everyone else is doing.

Big companies like Samsung and Apple have enough money, control, and connections to move the supply chain in whatever direction they want. In terms of smaller companies though, there is a single one trying to blaze its own path: Purism, the maker of open source Linux laptops, is building the Librem 5 smartphone. Not only is the OS open source and based on GNU/Linux—not Android—the hardware is open source, too. The core components have open source firmware, and there are even public hardware schematics. This is as close as you're going to get to a totally open source smartphone.

And its not cheap mainly because of no economy of scale but that's where the cost of going truly open source hardware impacts... and its not going to be high-end hardware either. This phone is intended for those users who truly prize freedoms and open source. It's like a user who does not want Gmail for free at the cost of advertising and being spied on, and would rather pay for a truly private e-mail service (or social media or whatever).

So you choose... freedom with more payment vs cheaper and being exploited (adverts model).

See https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2020/01/librem-5-phone-hands-on-a-proof-of-concept-for-the-open-source-smartphone/

#opensource #hardware #technology
#^Librem 5 phone hands-on—Open source phone shows the cost of being different

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It's not finished, but many of the basics for an open source smartphone are here.

Intel and Softbank Beware. Open Source Is Coming to the Chip Business - Although Its still Early Days

Date Published: Fri, 24 Jan 2020 15:24:57 +0200

After revolutionizing software, the open-source movement is threatening to do same to the chip industry.

Big technology companies have begun dabbling with RISC-V, which replaces proprietary know-how in a key part of the chip design process with a free standard that anyone can use. While it’s early days, this could create a new crop of processors that compete with Intel Corp. products and whittle away at the licensing business of Arm Holdings Plc.

In December, about 2,000 people packed into a Silicon Valley conference to learn about RISC-V, a new set of instructions that control how software communicates with semiconductors. In just a few years, RISC-V has grown from a college teaching tool into an open-source standard being explored by industry giants including Google, Samsung Electronics Co., Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., Qualcomm Inc. and Nvidia Corp.

There are some big names supporting this initiative who are probably eager to leverage more competition into this locked-in industry. Processors have become a considerable part of any PCs bill of materials.

See https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-01-22/open-source-transformed-software-the-chip-industry-is-next

#opensource #hardware

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Do You Really Need Antivirus Software on Linux? Likely Not, But You May Want To Protect Friends Using Windows or macOS

Date Published: Fri, 24 Jan 2020 13:43:44 +0200

There’s a myth that Linux doesn’t have viruses. but for most people, it’s true that they don’t need an antivirus on Linux. The short answer is that thanks to being more securely designed, better maintained, and, truth be told, less popular, Linux ends up being safer than Windows. There’s no simple yes or no answer to the question of the title, though, as it depends on the user and their needs.

Even if your OS of choice is safer than Windows and Mac OS, you don’t want it becoming a “carrier” for an infection that could bring your contacts’ PCs down.

See https://www.maketecheasier.com/linux-do-you-really-need-anti-virus-software/

#opensource #linux
#^https://www.maketecheasier.com/linux-do-you-really-need-anti-virus-software/

Sometimes an expensive electric toothbrush just needs a AA rechargeable battery replaced

Date Published: Fri, 24 Jan 2020 11:08:06 +0200

The job is not as simple as it could be but I get these things vibrate a lot, so a battery that just pulled loose may shift around inside. But this video at least gives an idea of what to expect and if your toothbrush is already as the end of its useful battery life, what have you actually got to lose.

Watch at https://youtu.be/e5uD2j3Sx28

#technology #DIY
#^Ep 33 Electric Toothbrush Battery Replacement/Upgrade

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Replacing/Upgrading the battery in an electric toothbrush In this video I step through the swap out of the old 600mAh NiCd battery with a 2000mAh NiMh batter...

How Smartphone Cameras Changed the Way We Document Our Lives - Carrying a smartphone allows us to photograph all parts of our lives, not just the happy, beautiful ones

Date Published: Thu, 23 Jan 2020 21:40:46 +0200

Search the Instagram hashtag #2009to2019 or #10yearchallenge and you’ll notice bangs are out and flannel is in. But there are two basic changes related to technology that are easy to miss. The first is unsurprising: Image quality has gotten much better. The second showcases how our photo taking style has changed. While most people’s 2009 photos are obviously taken by someone else—full-body shots from a distance, often containing little bits of forearm or cheek that reveal friends or family cropped out—most people’s current photos are mirror selfies where their smartphone is visible, or a flattering front-facing camera snap. Just as video killed the radio star, the smartphone has largely replaced the stand-alone camera.

As our device of choice has changed, so has the way we take photos. Having a camera always in your pocket has allowed us to take photos of pretty much anything—the number of photos we’ve collectively taken doubled between 2013 and 2017, from 6 billion to 1.2 trillion.

Yes as I look back at my digital; photos dating to 2000 I can see how the quality, size and volumes of photos taken has increased year-on-year. The good thing is we record so much more of our lives versus 1975 when photos were mainly just of select people (we had 24 frames, had to pay to develop them, wait a week, and then find some did not even come out). Now we just shoot away and take 10 or 20 photos of the same thing. But the joke may still be on us...although we have so many more memories, where will these be in 100 years time? Chances are my old printed photos in the family album will still be around ;-)

See https://slate.com/technology/2019/12/smartphone-camera-iphone-decade-photo-archive.html

#technology #photography
#^How Smartphone Cameras Changed the Way We Document Our Lives

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If there’s one silver lining to our collective smartphone addiction, it’s the gift of perspective.

Telegram 5.14 messenger adds multiple-answer and quiz polls - Handy for your 200,000 followers group (APK Download)

Date Published: Thu, 23 Jan 2020 20:48:51 +0200

Telegram is a messaging app jam-packed with features, but it isn't resting on its laurels. A new version of the app includes reworked options for creating polls, allowing people to create multiple-answer polls and quizzes.

There are three new types of polls. First is 'Visible Votes,' where you can see exactly who in a group voted for each option. Next is 'Multiple Answers,' where people can select multiple answers to a question. Finally, 'Quiz Mode' functions like a regular poll, but with only one correct option (and a confetti effect will appear if you pick the right one).

See https://www.androidpolice.com/2020/01/23/telegram-5-14-adds-multiple-answer-and-quiz-polls-apk-download/

#technology #instantmessenger
#^Telegram 5.14 adds multiple-answer and quiz polls (APK Download)

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Telegram is a messaging app jam-packed with features, but it isn't resting on its laurels. A new version of the app includes reworked options for creating

Does the Truth Matter Anymore in a Post-Truth (Fake News) world?

Date Published: Thu, 23 Jan 2020 18:55:15 +0200

Some insightful comments made in the linked video about why we find ourselves where we are today. Fake news is nothing new, and the example is given around the big tobacco companies trial from a few decades back, but what we have been seeing is verbatim reporting and re-shares on social media which spreads the fake news without any context. Even split reporting is not good enough (presenting both sides equally without context) and the case is made that the more recent handling of the anti-vax movement is showing a return to sanity. Part of the problem has also been scientists not acting for their part and just believing the "truth will out".

In many cases, like the tobacco trial. the disinformation is spread with a specific purpose in mind. More recently in politics we have seen lying without accountability and no shame, with the media not putting the lies in context (to prevent appearing to be biased). It is not about censoring the lies, but about stating them as well as the other side and then giving it context. For this the media needs to start taking a more active role.

We cannot have a situation where there is 1% of the people being very vocal about spreading disinformation and the 99% majority says nothing.... sound familiar? That is often the toxic state of social media that we find ourselves in. If the silent majority want to have rational discussions online they'll also need to make their voices heard collectively, otherwise you can just expect social media to become more toxic (resulting in many leaving, or you'll find posters disabling comments on posts).

One positive example I can give was on MeWe network where I had a few followers come out against a troll... and that troll disappeared pretty quickly, but it is a lone incident unfortunately.

Watch at https://youtu.be/EgE68NSffVI

#socialnetworks #fakenews #trolls
#^Does the Truth Matter Anymore? Lee McIntyre Explains | Amanpour and Company

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The Iranian government's lie about the Ukrainian passenger plane fits in with a global dilemma: how to navigate a post-truth world. Michel Martin delves into...

How to send files over a P2P connection from a browser using ToffeeShare and WebRTC

Date Published: Thu, 23 Jan 2020 12:31:48 +0200

If you have to share files remotely i.e., the person you want to share a file with isn’t on the same network as you, you will have to use an intermediary service. Often, users either email files, or upload them to cloud drives and then share a link to them. While these methods work and are great because they provide a ‘holding area’ for the file(s) until it has been downloaded, it may not suit everyone. If you prefer direct transfer between computers, you’re looking for P2P transfer. Generally speaking, this sort of transfer is possible but for end-users, it’s not the easiest to set up which is why ToffeeShare makes sense.

ToffeeShare works in your browser; you upload files and share a link with whoever you want to send the files to. Your browser must remain open and you cannot refresh or close the tab the transfer is active in until it is complete. The file itself isn’t stored online. So ToffeeShare is NOT storing the file, it is merely presenting a link that the other user can use to establish the download.

Firefox has its Send service too but that does store the file for a short period which you may consider if the person cannot retrieve the file in real time. The file is encrypted locally before being stored.

See https://www.addictivetips.com/web/send-files-over-a-p2p-connection-from-a-browser/

#technology #filetransfer
#^How to send files over a P2P connection from a browser

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If you have to share files remotely i.e., the person you want to share a file with isn't on the same network as you, you will have to use an intermediary %

University of Minnesota: Make a difference in your students' lives with free, openly-licensed textbooks

Date Published: Wed, 22 Jan 2020 20:50:05 +0200

Open textbooks are textbooks that have been funded, published, and licensed to be freely used, adapted, and distributed. These books have been reviewed by faculty from a variety of colleges and universities to assess their quality. These books can be downloaded for no cost, or printed at low cost. All textbooks are either used at multiple higher education institutions; or affiliated with an institution, scholarly society, or professional organization. The library currently includes 692 textbooks, with more being added all the time.

The Open Textbook Library is supported by the Center for Open Education and the Open Textbook Network.

As textbooks become more and more expensive and are often only sourced from a single publisher, the cost of textbooks for any university course starts to become a significant additional cost... unless they were free and could be edited/improved year-on-year.

See https://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/

#opensource #education
#^Open Textbook Library

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Textbooks every student can access and afford Open textbooks are textbooks that have been funded, published, and licensed to be freely used, adapted, and distributed. These books have been reviewed by faculty from a variety of colleges and universities to assess their quality. These books can be downloaded for no cost, or printed at low cost. All t...

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