Internet and Web

Your internet connection, web sites and services.

Johnny Jet Digs a Hole ...

Episode 1155

Johnny Jet is with us from the NY Times Travel Show back east, where he's talking about travel and offering tips. Travel Tips - Google Translate has updated it's app and now you can use it to actually talk to people. It's a universal translator with translations of 7 different languages for signs like Word Lens, which Google recently bought. It's like the Universal Translator in Star Trek or the Bable Fish from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. You can actually have a conversation with it. Works in French, German, Italian, Portunguese, Spanish, and Russian, etc. Leo says it's mindblowing!

Should I install the latest JAVA update?

Dan from Woodland Hills, CA

Episode 1155

Dan has been getting messages to update Java but he's worried about security. Leo says that since Dan uses Windows XP, Microsoft doesn't support it anymore and it's now a security issue. Google, will update Chrome, so it's a good idea to use that. Don't use Java unless you need to. But if you do, make sure you install all security patches. Also, disable the browser plugin and don't use Windows as an Administrator. Run as a limited user.

Can I change my Gmail address?

Episode 1154

Mike from Glendale, CA
Email

He can't change the email address without creating a new Google account. But he can use a "+" symbol at the end of his address before the @ sign, and then type something else and it will still go to his address. This is particularly useful when signing up for a service because he can add "+signup" or something similar, and then he can filter it in Gmail so it gets labeled appropriately.

Have you heard of Li-Fi?

Episode 1153

Jack from Thornton, NH
Light beams

Jack is wondering if Leo had heard of LiFi, which uses light to transfer data between the ISP and the computer. This is not the first time we've seen this kind of thing, and there are a number of ISPs that use microwave as well. Microwave and LiFi require direct line of sight. Leo says in theory, this makes sense, as it uses the same type of technology as fiber-optic. But there are issues with this, and this line-of-sight light could be interrupted by weather and other factors.

How can I change the default browser settings in Excel?

Episode 1154

Mike from East Vail, CA
Spreadsheet

Mike always ends up in Internet Explorer when using Excel, even though Google Chrome is his default browser. Leo says there may be a setting within Excel, or in the file association database, that's associating with Explorer. Leo suggests going into the control panel and look in there. He may be able to change it in the settings.

How can I troubleshoot my streaming buffering issues?

Episode 1153

Jeff from San Tan Valley, AZ
Buffering

Jeff has great bandwidth - 100Mbps down - but when he's streaming on his TV, he gets constant buffering. Leo says that smart apps on a TV are terrible. So Leo advises avoiding them and going with a streaming box like the Roku. Jeff says it's also happening with the Fire TV, though. Jeff is mostly having a hard time streaming DirecTV content. He has a SWiM box which is connected over the LAN in his house to his DirecTV receiver. There shouldn't ever be buffering, so Leo thinks it's the SWiM box.

How can I access my desktop from my tablet?

Episode 1153

Rob from Tarzana, CA
Desktop computer

Rob's job keeps him on the road, and he wants access to his desktop PC at home via his laptop or iPad. What's a good option, and can he do it without adding an app? Leo says that he can do it in a browser, but it's better in an app.

Atlas Remote Access on the iPad works well, according to the chatroom. There's also TeamViewer. But he'll need to install something. Google Chrome Remote requires installing an extension, but if the hardware isn't locked down from browser extensions, that's an option.

Johnny Jet

Episode 1153

Johnny Jet

Johnny Jet has some new websites -- RouteHappy gives reviews on flights. There's also SkyTrax, which is kind of like Yelp for the airlines. It gives you an idea on how airlines are ranked for customer service.

Travel App - FirePlace. Fireplace is an app that is what you expect -- a fireplace. Quite nice to set a mood for a romantic dinner. It's $0.99 for iPhone and iPad.