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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Electronic Tattoos

What if Andy Warhol had it wrong, and instead of being famous for 15 minutes, we’re only anonymous for that long?

In this fantastic TED TALK, Juan Enrique talks about the serious consequences of posting in the Digital Age.

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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.