Tips and Tricks

This category contains 7 posts

How To Publish An App in 10 Easy Steps


Are you an aspiring programmer? Are you dreaming of owning your own app development company someday? I know I do. That has been my aspiration, among other things, since I graduated from college. And boy, getting there isn’t as easy or glamorous as it sounds. Enter Chad Mureta.

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Water-proof everything with NeverWet!

For people like me who has invested a lot on their gadgets and smartphones, we could get a bit anxious and paranoid about having our stuff wet whenever we go near a swimming pool or whenever we hangout near the beach. Worse, most of the time, people nowadays tend to bring their gizmos anywhere, even in the bathroom, thus increasing the chances of slipping them onto a wet surface and making them really expensive paper weight.

Luckily for us, the folks at NeverWet have developed an interesting new product that completely repels water and heavy oils. The NeverWet technology, dubbed as super hydrophobic coating, boasts about five key applications: Anti-wetting, anti-icing, anti-corrosion, anti-bacterial and self-cleaning. Basically, this means any object coated with it literally can’t be touched by any liquid, making it virtually 100% waterproof! You don’t believe me? See the video below!

Unbelievably great, isn’t it? Imagine what this technology could do should they become mainstream. Shirts would never be stained during meals, shoes would never need cleaning or brushing, and your oh-so-beloved iPhone can now easily double as an underwater camera without any case! Man, I can’t wait until this technology comes to our shores…

NeverWet is backed by Ross Nanotechnology, LLC, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Ross Technology Corporation. Ross Technology Corporation has been in business since 1962 and occupies four separate plants in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Why buy a sports car?

Just recently, we talked about why should you opt for a manual transmission compared to an automatic one. Now, we tackle another important issue one faces when one finally decides to ditch his/her old ride to swap for a new one: should I buy that sports car I’ve long been drooling for?

To help you out, we give you four compelling reasons why you should buy that sports car you’ve been dreaming about.

Phenomenal Driving Experience

With sports cars primarily built for speed and acceleration, it is in their DNA that they are just downright fun to drive. Partly this is due to the light but durable materials used in manufacturing these vehicles, bust most of the time, this is brought about by the insanely huge and fast engines they install under the hood. With V6 and V8 engines common to most sports cars, you are surely going to have fun cornering and speeding on the highways with these cars. Of course, when doing so, do take note of the speed limit and traffic regulations on the area for everybody’s safety.

See also: Rides of the Fast & Furious 6

More Bragging Rights

Admit it. For most of us, this one is arguably one of the primary reasons for getting a sports car. What’s a better way of getting attention and making a statement than driving around in a Ferrari that packs 400 horses under the hood. More importantly, for guys out there, having a sports car adds a gazillion more pogi points to your overall appeal.

Sheer Beauty and Appeal

These days, cars do not only serve as a means to transfer from one place to another. Similar to mobile phones, watches, luxury bags and fancy clothes, cars now serve as a fashion statement and a testament to just how successful and powerful an individual really is. Of course, if you want a better sense of individuality, or if you want to make a lasting good impression to your peers, driving a high-performance vehicle surely does the trick compared to being seen cruising on a Vios or a Corolla. Believe me, I’ve been (and still currently is) there.

See also: Manila International Auto Show 2013

High Resale Value

Depreciation is part and parcel of owning a vehicle. And at the very second you turn the ignition key, your car is just not of the same monetary value as it first rolled out of the factory. As such, sports cars, with their inherent beauty, quality and elegance, are more likely to retain a high resale value than their lesser-gifted peers in the industry. This makes them a very good investment which should provide any owner great return-of-investment down the road. Do take note, however, that there is a flip-side to this as owning and maintaining sports car may also entail higher costs than consumer models.

Should you opt for a manual transmission on your new car?


For most of us, buying a car is one of the biggest life decisions that we make. Coupled with that decision, unfortunately, are tens if not hundreds of questions and concerns about the car that we are about to purchase: what car type to take, what color to choose, which trim level is better, what engine type is more efficient. The list goes on and on.

Arguably though, one of the most vital decisions any car buyer should never fail to consider is the car’s transmission. Nowadays, buyers are faced with a two-faceted choice of whether going manual or opting for an automatic transmission. And although automatic transmissions are fast becoming mainstream on most of the cars that are manufactured today, a manual transmission provides numerous benefits that are usually passed up by the average buyer. On this article, we talk about why you should carefully consider opting for that stick shift.

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What to Consider When Buying a Laptop

While tablets get all the attention these days, there’s a reason why laptops continue to be the computing device of choice for most people. Laptops offer real keyboards for faster typing, they’re better at multitasking, and they offer a lot more power for everything from editing video and creating PowerPoints to playing the latest games. So what type of laptop should you get?

There’s a wide variety of sizes, features and prices, which makes choosing the right laptop a challenge. That’s why you need to figure out what your needs are. To make the right call, just follow these eight tips.

1. Mac or Windows?

This is not an easy question to answer, especially if you’ve never considered making the switch from Windows to Mac. But this quick overview of each platform’s strengths and weaknesses should help.

Windows 8

Windows notebooks are generally more affordable (starting under $400) and offer a much wider range of design choices from more than a dozen major vendors. Unlike Apple, Microsoft and its partners allow users to buy notebooks with touch screens, as well as convertible designs that let you easily transform from notebook to tablet mode.

If you’re used to the Windows interface, but haven’t tried Windows 8, you may be in for a jarring surprise. The new OS has replaced the Start menu with a tile-based start screen and a raft of new full-screen, touch-friendly apps. However, Windows 8 still has a desktop mode for running all your existing apps. Many vendors offer Windows 7 as an option if you custom configure your notebook online.

In general, Windows notebooks provide more business-friendly features such as biometric and smartcard verification and Intel vPro systems management.

Apple OS X Mountain Lion

Apple’s MacBook Airs and MacBook Pros offer an easy-to-use operating system in OS X Mountain Lion. In fact, some say Mountain Lion is easier to navigate than the newer and bolder Windows 8. MacBooks offer iOS-like features such as Launch Pad for your apps, superior multitouch gestures, and Auto Save and Resume so you can pick up on your work right where you left off.

MacBook Airs and MacBook Pros also tend to outclass most Windows machines when it comes to industrial design, the touchpad and display quality. While Windows PCs offer more software choices, Apple makes it easier to find and install programs with the Mac App Store. However, Apple’s notebooks start at $999.

2. Choose the Right Size

Before you decide anything else, you need to figure out just how portable you need your laptop to be. Laptops are usually categorized by their display sizes:

11 to 12 inches: The thinnest and lightest systems around have 11- to 12-inch screens and typically weigh 3 to 3.5 pounds. However, at this size, the screen and keyboard will be a bit too cramped for some users.

13 to 14 inches: Provides the best balance of portability and usability. Laptops with 13- or 14-inch screens usually weigh between 3.5 and 4.5 pounds and fit easily on your lap while still providing generously sized keyboards and screens. Shoot for a system with a total weight under 4 pounds, if possible.

15 inches: The most popular size, 15-inch laptops are usually quite bulky and heavy at 5 to 6.5 pounds, but also cost the least. If you’re not planning to carry your notebook around often or use it on your lap, a 15-inch system could be a good deal for you. Some 15-inch models have DVD drives, but you’ll save weight if you skip it.

17 to 18 inches: If your laptop stays on your desk all day every day, a 17- or 18-inch system could provide you with the kind of processing power you need to play high-end games or do workstation-level productivity. Because of their girth, laptops this size can pack in high-voltage quad-core CPUs, power-hungry graphics chips and multiple storage drives. Just don’t think about carrying these 7 pound-plus systems anywhere.

3. Check That Keyboard and Touchpad

The most impressive specs in the world don’t mean diddly if the laptop you’re shopping for doesn’t have good ergonomics. Does the keyboard have solid tactile feedback and enough space between the keys? Is the touchpad smooth to operate or jumpy? Do the mouse buttons have a satisfying click, or do they feel mushy? How well do multitouch gestures work? You should be able to zoom in and out with ease, as well as select text with the touchpad without the cursor skipping around.

If you’re shopping for a Windows 8 notebook, test the touchpad to make sure that gestures don’t activate accidentally as you get close to the edges.

In general, Apple and Lenovo offer the best keyboards and touchpads. Dell and HP are generally pretty reliable in this category, too.

4. Know Your Specs

Notebook specs such as CPU, hard drive, RAM and graphics chip can confuse even notebook aficionados, so don’t feel bad if spec sheets look like alphabet soup to you. What you need really depends on what you plan to do with your laptop. More intensive tasks such as 3D gaming and HD video-editing require more expensive components.

Here are the main components to keep an eye on.

  • CPU: The least expensive laptops on the market have AMD E Series or Intel Pentium CPUs, which will struggle to handle serious productivity or media tasks but can handle Web surfing. Don’t settle for less than an Intel Core i3 CPU or AMD A Series. If you’re spending more than $500, demand at least an Intel Core i5 CPU, which is capable of increasing its clock speed dynamically when you need more performance. Power users and gamers should settle for no less than Core i7 system, preferably a quad-core chip.
  • RAM: When it comes to memory, or RAM, even the cheapest notebooks have 4GB these days so don’t settle for less. If you can get a system with 6 or 8GB, you’ll be better prepared for high-end applications and lots of multitasking.
  • Hard Drive: For most users, a fast drive is more important than a large one. If you have a choice, go for a 7,200-rpm hard drive over a 5,400-rpm unit. Even if you have several movies and games on your hard drive, a 320GB should provide more than enough space, but 500GB or 750GB drives usually don’t cost much more.
  • Flash Cache: Any Ultrabook and some other notebooks come with 8, 16 or 32GB flash caches you can use to increase performance. While not as fast as an SSD, a flash cache will help boost load and boot times while allowing you to store all your data on a large hard drive.
  • Solid State Drives (SSDs): These drives cost quite a bit more than traditional hard drives and come with less capacity (usually 128 to 256GB), but they dramatically improve performance. You’ll enjoy faster boot times, faster resume times, and faster application open times. Plus, because SSDs don’t have moving parts such as mechanical drives, failure is much less of an issue.
  • Display: The more pixels you have, the more content you can fit on-screen, and the sharper it will look. Most budget and mainstream notebooks come with 1366 x 768-pixel resolutions. However, if you have the option, choose a laptop with a higher pixel count 1600 x 900 or 1920 x 1080 —always go for the highest res you can get. You’ll see more of your favorite Web pages, multitask better and have a better movie-watching experience. Full HD panels (1920 x 1080) cost about $150 more than your typical display, but are worth the splurge, especially on larger screens.
  • Touch Screen: Windows 8 is simply more fun and immersive with a touch screen, but if your laptop is not a hybrid with a bendable or rotatable screen, you can probably live without it. Though you can get a touch-screen system for under $500 these days, the difference in price between similarly configured systems with and without touch is $100 to $150.
  • Graphics Chip: For the most part, an integrated graphics chip (one that shares system memory) will be fine for basic tasks, including surfing the Web, watching video and even playing some mainstream games. But a discrete graphics processor from AMD or Nvidia (which has dedicated video memory) will provide better performance when it comes to the most-demanding games. Plus, a good GPU can accelerate video playback on sites such as Hulu, as well as speed up video editing.As with CPUs there are both high- and low-end graphics chips. Nvidia maintains a list of its graphics chips from low to high end as does AMD. In general, workstations and gaming notebooks will have the best GPUs, including dual graphics on the most expensive systems.
  • DVD/Blu-ray Drives. Fewer and fewer laptops these days come with optical drives. That’s because you can download most software and download or stream video from the Web. Unless you burn discs or want to watch Blu-ray movies, you don’t need one of these drives and can save as much as half a pound of weight by avoiding them. At this point, DVD drives are a safety blanket.

5. Hybrid or Traditional Notebook?

Since the launch of Windows 8, we’ve seen a number of hybrid laptop designs that double as tablets. These include the Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga, which has a screen that bends back 360 degrees to turn into a slate, tablets that pop off of their keyboards like the HP Envy x2 and notebooks with slide-out keyboards like the Sony VAIO Duo 11.

In most cases, these devices don’t provide as good of a slate experience as dedicated tablets or as strong of a notebook experience as clamshell-only devices. If you like the idea of occasionally using your laptop in slate mode, a convertible like the Yoga is a versatile choice. But if you want the flexibility of using your device as standalone tablet, a detachable design is best.

6. Don’t Skimp on Battery Life

Even if you only plan to move your laptop from the desk to the couch and the bed or from your cubicle to the conference room, battery life matters. Nobody wants to be chained to a power outlet, even if there’s a socket within reach. If you’re buying a 15-inch notebook, look for at least 4 hours of endurance. Those who plan to be fairly mobile should shop for notebooks that offer more than 5 hours of battery life, with 6-plus hours being ideal.

If given the choice, pay extra for an extended battery; you won’t regret it. Keep in mind that some notebooks (such as the MacBook Air) feature sealed batteries that you can’t easily upgrade yourself.

To determine a notebook’s expected battery life, read third-party results from objective sources rather than taking the manufacturer’s word for it. Your actual battery life will vary depending on your screen brightness and what tasks you perform (video eats more juice than Web surfing).

7. How Much Can You Get for Your Money?

These days, you can buy a usable laptop for under $500, but if you can budget more, you’ll get a system with better build quality, longer battery life, a sharper screen and stronger performance. Here’s what you can get for each price point.

  • $400 to $600: For well under $600, you can get a notebook with an Intel Core i5 or AMD A8 CPU, 4 to 8GB of RAM, and a 500GB hard drive, all respectable specs. However, at this price point, most notebooks have cheap plastic chassis, low-res screens and weak battery life. However, at this price point, most notebooks have cheap plastic chassis, low-res screens and weak battery life, but you can occasionally find a touch screen.
  • $600 to $800: As you get above $600, you’ll start to see more premium designs, such as metal finishes. Manufacturers also start to add in other features as you climb the price ladder, including better audio and backlit keyboards. You may also be able to get a screen with a resolution that’s 1600 x 900 or higher and a flash cache.
  • Above $800: At this price range, expect notebooks that are more portable, more powerful or both. Expect higher resolution screens, faster processors and possibly discrete graphics. The lightest, longest-lasting ultraportables like the MacBook Air and Lenovo ThinkPad X1 carbon tend to cost more than $1,000. High-end gaming systems and mobile workstations usually cost upward of $1,500 or even as much as $2,500 or $3,000.

8. The Brand Matters

Your laptop is only as good as the company that stands behind it. Accurate and timely technical support is paramount.

Support is only part of what makes a notebook brand worth your money. You also have to consider how the manufacturer stacks up to the competition in terms of design, value and selection, review performance, and other criteria.

Editor’s Note: Article directly reposted from The original article was written by Mark Spoonauer. No copyright infringement intended.

How to make your car last a lifetime: Part2

Last week, we compiled a list of advices, tips and tricks to help lengthen the life of your automobile. This is Part2 of the said list.

  1. Keep a log of your vehicle’s gas fill-ups, mileage, parts replacement/repair history and the like to help you track its overall health.
  2. Should you not be using your car for long periods of time, store it properly to help prevent unnecessary damage and repair. Fill-up the gas tank to prevent condensation to accumulate. Thoroughly wash and wax the car to protect the paint and finish. Disengage the parking brake to help avoid corrosion of your vehicle’s brake pads. Use jack stands to remove pressure from the car’s wheels and tires. Disconnect and remove the battery to keep it from draining. Lastly, put a rag on the tailpipe to prevent moisture from going in.
  3. Minimize exterior and interior damage from UV sunlight and heat by trying to park your car in the shade or inside a garage whenever possible. Using car shades, be it the foldable or pleated type, may also help preserve your car’s upholstery.
  4. Remove dirt particles by regularly vacuuming and cleaning your car’s interior. This will prevent some abrasive or corrosive particles from wrecking havoc inside your vehicle.
  5. Use floor mats to protect your car’s built-in carpeting. To help control salt, slush, mud and water, trying using rubber waffle-style mats.
  6. Wipe rubber protectors, such as Armor All, on door and window rubber strips to keep them in good condition. Refrain from using oil-based protectors such as WD-40 as they could potentially damage rubber.
  7. Leather car seats, even if they are extremely durable and maintenance-free, could become soiled after some time. To preserve them, you may (1) apply leather cleaner to remove dirt and grime and (2) use a leather protector to help the seat’s top coat resist dust and stains.
  8. To help avoid light fixture problems clean dirty or corroded sockets with fine steel wool or small wire brush.
  9. Whenever possible, fill your windshield washer reservoir with washer fluid instead of water. Not only does it clean better, it also does not freeze in cold weather.
  10. Prevent exceeding the provided load specifications of your car. Usually this ranges from 150 to 200 pounds.
  11. Check the wheel-well splashguards of your car. However flimsy and weak they may seem, these guards help keep water and dirt particles from splashing into the engine compartment, where it could possibly damage sensitive components. Mud flaps could also be added for adder protection.
  12. If you are a self-proclaimed car enthusiast, consider investing in a fender cover to help protect your fender from scratches due to tools and components you remove or install from your vehicle.

Stay tuned for Part3 of the series next week. For a recap of Part1, see this: How to make your car last a lifetime: Part1.

Editor’s Note: The above article could also be seen at as the writer contributes to the said website as well. No Intellectual Property infringement intended.

How to make your car last a lifetime: Part1

Your car, just like any other mechanical device, needs a lot of TLC than you might think. Hence, it is of utmost important to understand how to take care and maintain your vehicle to keep it running in top-notch condition.  Below we have compiled a comprehensive list of advices, tips, and tricks to prolong the life of your auto to last a lifetime.

  1. On the first 1,600km of your car’s life, keep your speed under 80kph or as recommended by the manufacturer.
  2. Avoid heavy loads such as towing trailers and filling the trunk up to its rated capacity.
  3. As much as possible, do not let your car run idle for extended periods, as the oil pressure generated in the engine may not be sufficiently sending oil to every part of the engine. This also helps you save on gas.
  4. Do not stress your engine too much by using only light to moderate acceleration, generally below 3,000RPM.
  5. Allow your car to warm-up especially during cold weather. Never race your car’s engine especially within 5-10mins after startup.
  6. If your car is an automatic, put lesser strain on your engine and transmission by shifting to neutral at red lights on whenever idle for long periods of time.
  7. Extend your tire’s life by driving carefully. Observe speed limits, avoid sudden acceleration and deceleration, and avoid potholes and stray objects on the road. Steer clear of curbs especially when parking.
  8. Do not hold your steering wheel in an extreme right or left position for prolonged periods of time. This will cause strain to your power steering pump.
  9. Consolidate your short driving tips as much as possible. This will not only help you save on gas, it will also keep your engine happier longer.
  10. Buy gas at trustworthy and reputable gas stations. Some stations do not have pump filters, or do not replace them regularly, making you more vulnerable to dirty or petrol.
  11. Should you be stuck in mud or snow, go easy on your car. Gently rocking your car from side to side is okay. However, repeatedly throwing your car from forward to reverse, or spinning your tires at high speeds, can induce a lot of heat, spelling trouble for your car’s transmission and differentials. It may be wiser to call a tow truck instead.
  12. If your car key shares a key chain with a lot of your other keys, try separating them. This will lighten the load on your ignition switch, prolonging its life.

Editor’s Note: The above article could also be seen at as the writer contributes to the said website as well. No Intellectual Property infringement intended.

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