New Year – Old Things Disappear

Last night, the batteries for my T.V. remote control died. I had no replacements in the house. I quickly realized that I could control my T.V., Roku and Amazon Fire TV streaming devices with my Nexus 6 Smartphone.

I started thinking what other parts of my life would be disappearing.

Checks– I haven’t written a physical check in over a year. Everything is paid for by cash, debit card or online payment

CD, DVD USB Sticks– My Macbook does not even contain an optical drive and I rarely purchase a DVD since most of my media is consumed via a streaming service (i.e. Netflix, Amazon Prime Video)

Books (Physical)  Ok. this is a sad one since I enjoy browsing in Book Stores. But, the truth is that everything I read is on a Kindle or in one of the cloud services.

TechCrunch has a powerful article on what they think will be gone in 5 years. You can find the article here

What do you think will be gone?

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Are Your Photos Safe?

Pop Quiz Cuenca Tech Life viewers.  What would happen if you lost your camera, computer, and digital storage cards?  Do you have a digital backup of your most precious photos?  Most people will say I think I backed it up to a cloud service or I made a CD/DVD copy.

On June 26th I will  show you how to edit, backup, and organize your digital photographs so you can easily retrieve, email or print them on demand.  I will be using Flickr’s improved service that provides 1 Terabyte of data – Enough storage for over 500,000 photos. See this link for details

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Computer Workshops In Cuenca And Online

Later this month I plan to offer some 3 hour computer workshops in Cuenca.  I have previously delivered these courses in person and online in the U.S. Please take a moment and complete the poll. Feel free to make comments about any other courses that you are interested in. Of course feel free to email me at graygeek@gmail.com.  Thanks for your participation.

What Electronics Should You Bring To Ecuador (Part Two)

Working on the assumption that you have room in your suitcases and that electronics are 30-40% higher I would bring the following:

Camera: Digital cameras are super cheap in the United States.  I have two cameras in Cuenca.  I have a Samsung ultra compact that I purchased in Costco for $130 two years ago . I take 80% of my photos with that camera. Why?  Good to Very good results and it doesn’t draw attention in the middle of a busy street.  The other camera is a Nikon D80 (looks expensive) DSLR.  I only use this camera when I am with another person or I am on a trip with a lot of other people.  I just think it’s good street smarts not to draw attention to yourself and your vunerable when changing lenses.  The Samsung also takes fair to good videos.

Camcorder: Of course this recommendation is for people who want to take videos.  I just purchased a Canon  HF R20 HD Camcorder that fits in the palm of my hand. Very inexpensive. Great videos recorded on a very inexpensive SD chip and again it does not bring attention from outsiders.

Router: Internet service is our lifeline to our children, grandchildren and friends. I have two Internet services. Total monthly charge $42. One service came with a router and the other didn’t.  If you have a good router. Bring it.

Hard Drives.  A year ago I would have said bring them down.  Now with all the free Cloud services( File storage)  around I would say “save the space”. I have a very small 500 gb Seagate Drive.  It works great.

T.V’s Blu-Ray DVD Players etc.  Again this is a storage conern. I purchased a Samsung 40 inch LED HDTV for about $150 more than in the US. It helps to be fluent in Spanish or have an assertive translator to get the best deal. I purchased a great LG Blu-Ray player for just $15 more than in the U.S.

Miscellaneous: Cables, SD Cards, Surge Protectors etc. Bring them . A 4 ft HDMI cable (connection from your device to a HDTV) cost $18 compared to about $6 in the U.S.  The same is true of of memory cards and surge protectors.

I look forward to discussion and questions on other electronic items to bring with you on your trip to Cuenca.