When Will It Go Bad?

Food Date Myth

No, I’m not getting philosophical – just being practical. I found a great site called “EatByDate” that can tell you how long food actually lasts under different conditions.  You can browse by category or search for a specific food.  Not only will you get specific advice based on how the item is packaged and stored, this site will also tell you how to identify spoiled foods and offer tips on extending shelf life.

Do you have a practical site you’d like to share?  Let me know in the comments.

Apps to Help Identify a Tablet/Smartphone/Laptop Thief

11719567_sImage credit: seewhatmitchsee / 123RF Stock Photo

We all know tablets, smartphones, and laptops are attractive targets for thieves.  Not only is the equipment inherently valuable, but think of all the data, pictures, and account information you have saved on your phone!  The time to protect yourself is before your device is stolen.

MakeUseOf.com has written some helpful posts on how to prepare your devices for the worst case scenario.  I would recommend reading two short articles: Don’t Be a Victim: Practical Tips To Protect Your Smartphone From Theft and Identify the Guy Who Stole Your Phone, Tablet, or Laptop.

If thieves make you angry, and you would like to gloat at their humiliation and capture, try Revenge of the geek: MacBook thief made a fool of on YouTube. The end of the article contains links to more stories of foiled electronics thieves.

Do you use a recovery tool not mentioned in the articles above?  Please share it the comments section below.

Life After iGoogle

google-icon

Have you come to depend on iGoogle as a convenient home page with all of your favorite Google (and other) stuff in one place?  Me too.  Despite the popularity of iGoogle, Google has decided to discontinue the service after November 1, 2013.  This leaves many users scrambling for a new solution.  Whether you are an iGoogle user or not, you may find the suggestions below useful.

1.  Google Shortcuts
If you are looking for is quick access to Google products, and you use Firefox or Chrome for your browser, this add-on may help.  It does exactly what it sounds like – it adds shortcuts for Google services to the top of your browser.  You can choose which shortcuts you use by clicking the gear icon.  Here’s a clip of what the shortcuts look like on my browser (Firefox):

googleshortcuts

Warning:  the download page is in German, but the settings and operations are in English.

2. Myfav.es
If you don’t need previews of content, just quick links to your favorite sites, this may be the service for you.  There are shortcuts for many, many websites available.  No account necessary.  Here is what the homepage I created looks like:
faves

Chances are, though, that you are looking for a page with gadgets that offers previews of your email, RSS feeds, calendar, etc.  Read on for other services that offer a similar experience to iGoogle.

3.  igHome
This one is my current favorite.  The setup was easy, and in no time I had a functioning page nearly identical to my iGoogle page.  As a bonus, shortcuts to Google services are included in a toolbar at the top of the page.  If you are using the Gmail gadget, be sure to turn on IMAP in your Gmail settings and approve the igHome application to access it.

4. Netvibes
This one is a bit more complicated than igHome to set up, but more customization is available.  Also, more widgets are available than with some other customized home pages.

5. uStart.org
This solution is similar to Netvibes.  You may want to experiment with both and see which you like better.

6. MyMSN and MyYahoo
These are personalized homepages provided by their respective companies.  If you don’t need any gadgets related to Google (Gmail, Google Calendar, etc.), one of these may work well for you.

7. Skim.Me
This one looks promising, but I’m still waiting for an invitation to get in on the beta.

Have you found another solution?  If so, let me know about it in the comments.

Happy computing!