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Hardware – Paper Bird Tek

What’s inside: LCD monitors

Ever wonder what exactly is inside your monitor and how it works? With the majority of computer monitors these days being LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) let’s have a look inside one and see what makes it tick. I should warn you first, do not take a monitor apart unless you are experienced with this type of electronics. Monitors, even the newer ones, can discharge a large amount of electricity…

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Switching from cable to streaming, Part 2: Hardware

In the last article we talked about replacing your existing cable connection with online streaming services. What we did not discuss was how to get those services from the internet to your television. That is what we will be covering today. If your TV is new enough, and high end enough, it is probably what we call a smart TV. This means it has the capability to run apps…

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Why you should buy your own cable modem

If you use a cable company for your internet the odds are you are renting your modem from your cable company. At first glance this seems like an OK idea since it is usually only $10 a month and if anything goes wrong, they take care of it. There are several problems with this idea however, starting with the fact that you are almost certainly being given a used…

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What’s inside: Keyboards

Have you ever wondered what exactly is inside your keyboard? Where all the little pieces of Doritos and bagel go when they mysteriously disappear? While there are a myriad of different types and styles of keyboards out there, there are many similarities as well. Let’s take one apart and see what’s inside! Our victim this time is a fairly popular KeyToninc keyboard. While certainly not a high end keyboard,…

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iPad pro 12.9″, worth the money?

I want to discuss both the original model and the new model of the iPad Pro 12.9″. Since I have both models in my house, it makes sense to compare the two as well as look at the overall model to determine if it is right for you. The iPad Pro 12.9″ version 1 My favorite Christmas present last year was my iPad Pro 12.9, even though it was…

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802.11ax, the newest wireless standard is fast, really fast.

Almost all of us use wireless networking every day. From our smartphones, laptops, and tablets, to our thermostats and cameras, it is all around us. I think everyone will agree that the faster we can get this network, the better. Everyone hates stuttering or buffering video and audio. 802.11ax promises to help reduce bottlenecks and increase speeds but to understand it’s advances, we need to start a little earlier…

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What is hard drive fragmentation and should you care?

All of your computer’s programs and data are stored on a device called a hard drive (or an SSD, when I say hard drive in this article, I could be talking about either type). Every time you open a document, load a webpage, or even turn on your computer, you are reading and writing data to your hard drive. There are two basic types of hard drives in use:…

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The ultimate in wireless network extending; mesh networks

In previous articles we talked about extending and securing your wireless network and that information works fantastic for the vast majority of users out there. Occasionally however someone needs a network extended far beyond what the “normal” wireless hardware can provide. When this happens, it is time for a mesh network approach. Mesh networks are composed of devices that are all connected together and broadcast the same wireless network…

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Why the consumer digital camera market is vanishing

Slowly but surely it seems that the consumer digital camera market is disappearing. There are several reasons why this is happening and we can expect more of a shift in the future but before we get into that we need to define what I mean by consumer digital cameras. I divide the camera market into consumer, prosumer and professional. There are specializations as well such as astrophotography, medical, and…

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Streaming video surveillance cameras, watching from afar. Part 2

In the previous article we talked about the uses of surveillance camera and many of the features. In this article we will talk more about picking out cameras, installing them and using them. For most of my installations I choose a 720 camera that can record directly to the camera, to a NAS or to an FTP site. These camera also can stream directly from the camera to a…

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