Your internet connection, web sites and services.
Internet and Web
David would like to use a URL shortener when he tweets. How can he do that? Leo says that Twitter usually does it automatically. But if not, Leo advises using Bit.ly. Then he can input the URL and add it. He can also customize it.
However, the disadvantage is that it's not apparent where the link leads to, which can be risky.
Marie got the FBI Virus Scam popup that has locked up her computer. Leo says it's highly customizable by the hacker who sends it out and in Marie's case, it demands she call to address the issue. So Leo thinks that it may be an offshoot of the cyrpto locker virus. Or just a malicious website. Regardless, her system has been compromised. The only real way to handle it is to backup her data, wipe the drive and reinstall Windows from a known, good source. She can also run the system restore discs, then update the OS completely.
Ralph creates 3D characters and then carves them out of foam for Disney. He's employing the same technology and starting a new business where he uses a cat scanner and laser 3D scanner, then 3D prints it to create accurate miniature dinosaur skulls that he casts in precious metals. Check out Ralph's Kickstarter campaign. Leo says it's a shameless plug, but he loves it and has to have one.
Johnny is joining us from the Italian Lake District, and he wants to talk about the opportunities that arise to rent apartments. There's a site called AirBnB, which allows you to rent a house or apartment. But in San Francisco, they're cracking down on renting apartments and houses without paying hotel taxes. Johnny says you can get some great places for prices lower than a hotel. There's also couchsurfing.com.
John is frustrated with the slow speed of his wireless connection. Leo says it largely depends on the speed. 802.11n is the fastest, but it's being supplanted by 80211.ac. John has an 802.11g router and that's not as fast as n. The farther away a router is, the slower the Wi-Fi signal gets. Congestion by competing Wi-Fi access points can be an issue as well, since everyone is on the same spectrum - 2.4Ghz. That's why Leo recommends using dual band routers which also run on the 5Ghz band spectrum.
Phillip says his Internet Explorer stalls on him. Does he have to reformat and reinstall Windows? Leo says no. He can just reset Internet Explorer. Phillip should go into Tools > Internet Options > Advanced options > Reset. This will wipe out everything - including all the cached stuff - and reset it to the default configuration.
Michael has noticed that he gets a warning that some websites are suspect and it won't let him in unless he agrees to take the risk. Leo says that is a function of Google and Microsoft which searches websites and flags them as being at risk for malware. Leo says it's a good service, and helps prevent malware from poorly designed websites from infecting users, especially on the Windows platform. Forums are frequently bit because they are written in open source and rarely updated. They should fix it, because if Michael is having issues, then everyone is.
The latest version of Gmail's iOS app will not only support background app refresh, but also will provide for sign in across all Google apps. This means that once a user signs into gmail, he or she is automatically signed into all Google apps. This also works for signing out. This is leaving users up in arms over the fact that Google is even more intrusive in their daily mobile lives. Users are also complaining that the app refresh will eat up more battery power. In Europe, countries are investigating Google over privacy issues as a result.
Steve signed up for a VPN in order to bypass the bottlenecks brought about by his ISP and Netflix. Leo says that's an interesting solution as the data would be encrypted and the ISP wouldn't know what the data is. Leo says ISPs are slowing down the traffic by 33%, and it's terrible that they do it. VPNs could be a solution to that. However, it also delays his signal because of the overhead of encryption and decryption that would be required. Since Netflix is paying Comcast now for preferred traffic access, a VPN would actually slow the signal down.
Johnny Jet has a great travel tip - always target business hotels on weekends. They tend to be empty and offer great deals. Johnny also says that Uber is a great app and car service for renting cars in San Francisco. Leo says he likes Uber's car service a lot because it's a comfortable ride. But there's controversy because it's not bonded and many cities have banned them. Johnny also says that LAX won't allow Uber drivers because it gets a piece of all taxi fees.