Friday, November 28, 2014

Poor Streaming Performance? Change DNS Servers!

Poor Streaming Performance? Change DNS Servers!
Bypass broadband provider throttling by changing your DNS server address
DNS is an acronym for "Domain Name Service" and/or "Domain Name Servers". A (DNS) is much like a telephone book except for the internet.

When you sign up with your internet provider you are provided with DNS servers that are used in your router. This is typically their own DNS servers that filter traffic through their account. They can block certain sites or filter traffic that goes through their network DNS servers. Some unscrupulous cable providers will even throttle traffic (slow it down) when it goes to their competitors sites.

When streaming sites are throttled this can have a negative effect on streamers. For example, when streaming movies from Netflix or Amazon Instant, if their websites are throttled it can cause more buffering and actually stream in lower quality. Netflix will adjust the HD quality based on your internet connection speed.

Fight back against internet provider induced poor streaming performance

One thing you can do is change the DNS settings in your broadband router. You will need to dig out your router instruction manual or look online for your model number to find them.

While DNS Server addresses can be changed on individual computers. When streaming most media players do not give you the option to change DNS servers and will use the DNS servers that are entered into your Router.

How to Change DNS Settings on your Router
Changing the DNS settings on your Router is pretty easy. We highly recommend you write down and keep your old DNS settings. Should you ever have an issue connecting to the internet, just enter the old DNS numbers or alternative DNS server addresses from another provider.

While each router is slightly different, it is actually very easy to change your DNS server settings. Look at the following image links to get an idea of how to do this with popular routers.

How To Change DNS Servers on NEGEAR Routers
How To Change DNS Servers on Linksys Routers
How To Change DNS Servers on D-Link Routers
Enter your router access page usually you type this IP address in your web browser (, At the top of the page click "SETUP". Then on the left hand side click "INTERNET" and then at the bottom of the next page click "Manual Internet Connection Setup". In the bottom DHCP section, type in one of the IP addresses listed below in the Primary DNS Server box, and the second IP address in the Secondary DNS Server box. You will then have to click "SAVE SETTINGS" near the top of the page.
How To Change DNS Servers on Belkin Routers
How To Change DNS Servers on Apple Routers
On Apple Airport Routers go to Applications / Utilities and open your AirPort Utility. Near the bottom of the window you will see an image of your Router with your user name. Click on the image of your AirPort Router and in the small pop-up window click Edit. In the new window at the top click the Internet Tab. Enter your primary and Secondary DNS Server IP addresses from the ones listed below.

Best Public USA DNS Server Addresses


Google Public DNS:

Change your DNS servers to one outside your country

While the above public DNS Servers are based inside the USA, you can also change your DNS servers to ones outside your country. This can sometimes offer certain advantages, like bypassing regional sports blackouts or geo-blocking. It can also cause issues, for example if your Roku is registered to a USA account, and you change your DNS settings to one from DNS Watch who is located in Germany, you may no longer have access to your channels or be able to watch the same movies if you were DNS server were located in the USA.

DNS.WATCH (Germany): Uncensored (Denmark):

Safer Web Surfing for your Kids

Changing your DNS Servers can also be used to filter out content you don't want your kids to have access to. Sign up for an account at DNS watch, enter their DNS Server settings into your Router and your kids will be filtered and blocked from all adult content on the web. When they are fast asleep simply change the DNS server settings back to the public uncensored ones and you will have full access to the wide open internet.

Safe DNS:

While this is information your broadband provider will typically not tell you. As you can see by changing your DNS Server settings, it will actually give you quite a bit more control over your internet connection and your media streaming experience. - See more at:

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Turn Your Smartphone Into a Projector!

Smartphones can do amazing things, and one of the best things about them is that they can play videos, whether from youtube or from files you've transferred to them. The only problem with that is the small screen size, that makes it uncomfortable to watch anything for more than a few minutes.
And what happens when you want to show a special clip or video you took to a group of other people? It's not fun to huddle and squint. For that reason, we bring you this simple DIY project anyone can make, and it'll turn your ordinary smartphone to a real life projector!

What You'll Need:

Shoe box
Magnifying glass
paper clip
Cutting knife
sticky tape
black paint (optional) 

smartphone projector

Find the exact center of the box (important for focus). Now place the center of the magnifying glass at the exact center of the box and mark the spot.
smartphone projector

Use the knife to cut around the mark.  

smartphone projector

Optional - color the box black.

Enter the magnifying glass in the hole created and set it in place with the sticky tape. 

smartphone projector
smartphone projector

Make a hole at the edge of the box and pass the charger cable through it.
smartphone projector

Use the paper clip to make a little stand for the smartphone. Then, using the sticky tape, connect the stand you made to the box. 

smartphone projector
smartphone projector

To prevent the picture to be mirrored, you'll need to turn the screen around. It doesn't really ruin the experience but it will change the direction of everything, and if you have subtitles, they won't display right.

iPhones have this function in the settings (Settings - General - Interface - touch). If you have an android phone, you can download an app called 'picture flip' that will do the same thing. 

smartphone projector

Close the box, point it at the wall and check if the focus is right. If not, move the stand until you find it. 

smartphone projector

That's it! Now you can watch and show others youtube videos, clips, tv or movies from your smartphone projected on your wall!
smartphone projector



Sunday, November 23, 2014

International Mobile Station Equipment Identity

Probably this may be useful when you have lost your phone. Just type *#06# in your dialpad to get IMEI number and everyone must note it for safety. If you have this 15 digit number you can erase all the data even when you have lost the phone or even the thief changed the SIM.

The International Mobile Station Equipment Identity or IMEI /ˈm/[1] is a number, usually unique,[2][3] to identify 3GPP (i.e., GSMUMTS and LTE) and iDEN mobile phones, as well as some satellite phones. It is usually found printed inside the battery compartment of the phone, but can also be displayed on-screen on most phones by entering *#06#on the dialpad, or alongside other system information in the settings menu on smartphone operating systems.

The IMEI number is used by a GSM network to identify valid devices and therefore can be used for stopping a stolen phone from accessing that network. For example, if amobile phone is stolen, the owner can call his or her network provider and instruct them to "blacklist" the phone using its IMEI number. This renders the phone useless on that network and sometimes other networks too, whether or not the phone's SIM is changed.

International Mobile Station Equipment Identity

Saturday, November 15, 2014

15 iPhone Apps That Pay You For Using Them

15 iPhone Apps That Pay You For Using Them

(Click Infographic To Enlarge)

15 Paying iPhone Apps Infographic

How to Clean Your Cell Phone

How to Clean Your Cell Phone (Trust Us, You Need To)

I’m sorry to do this to you, but I’m about to gross you out: Your cell phone—you know, that thing you’re constantly holding to your cheek and tapping away at—has 18 times as much bacteria on it as a toilet seat. Since we’re in the process of spring cleaning our homes, we decided now was the perfect time to de-germ our phones, too.
• First things first: Before you get into cleaning mode, research your phone. “It’s always a good idea to do a quick search for cleaning instructions for your model with the cellphone manufacturer,” says Lori Philbin from “Some companies, like Apple for example, use glass on both sides of the device, so you wouldn’t want to use alcohol to clean it.” You should also turn off your phone, remove the case and the battery if you’re able to before cleaning. And if your phone is cracked, you shouldn’t attempt to clean it yourself, since you could permanently damage it.
• Make a DIY cleaner. Do you have a phone with a keypad? (If so, lucky you—they’re much easier to clean than touch screens!) David Bakke, a tech expert from suggests making a DIY cleaning formula of one-part water and one-part rubbing alcohol, then dipping a Q-tip in the mixture to lightly clean the keys. You can use that same formula to wipe down a plastic cellphone case. “Rub the area where your battery sits, as well as the battery cover, with a dry cotton swab,” says Bakke. “You can use a water-dampened cotton swab to clean your camera lens, as well.” In a pinch, a piece of tape is also handy for removing dust, crumbs or fingerprints from your keypad and other crevices on the device.
• Prevent germs from taking over in the first place. You probably received a microfiber cloth in the box when you first bought your phone—use it to quickly erase fingerprints and smudges. If you lost yours, there are plenty to be found on Amazon (here’s a two-pack for $5.49). PhoneSoap also makes an antibacterial polish ($14.96 at that prevents new germs from growing on your screen, so you won’t have to wipe it down as frequently. Bonus: It also makes your phone crazy-shiny!
• Protect your touch screen. Since you’re constantly touching your phone’s display, it gets dirtier than any other part of the device. So using a screen protector is just as important for protecting against germs as it is for unsightly scratches. Look for one with an Olephobic layer, which repels oil and makes cleaning easier (try Ballistic Glass screen protectors, $15.95 for iPhone, Samsung Galaxy or Google Nexus at We’ve also found inexpensive screen protectors on Amazon and eBay, where they frequently sell for just a few dollars each.
• Clean your touch screen. Screen protectors are great, but if you’ve already been using your touchscreen without one, you need another way to de-germ it. Luckily, several companies make smartphone cleaners that are designed specifically for touch screens. Tech Armor sells a cleaning kit that includes pre-moistened cleaning wipes and a gel screen cleaner ($12.95 at and iKlear has non-toxic cleaning products for a variety of electronic devices (prices start at $9.95, If you have a household of gadgets that need to be cleaned, you could save money in the long run by investing in a UV cleaner. While pricier, Phone Soap’s UV Charger kills all the bacteria on your phone in five minutes ($59.95 and Verilux makes a portable UV wand that can be quickly swiped over your device to sanitize it ($39.95 at
- See more at:

Monday, November 10, 2014

Amazon's Echo Might Be Its Most Important Product In Years

It's pretty rare that a new product truly surprises us. But today Amazon did just that, introducing Echo, a talking, listening piece of electronic furniture. It's like having the internet on your kitchen table, cracking jokes and settling bets, and it's the most innovative device Amazon's made in years.
Echo, ostensibly a speaker, is a deceptively boring-looking little tube, as though Amazon's designers took an old Kindle and rolled it into a cylinder, plugging its unremarkable guts with intelligent software that talks to you. You say Echo's "wake word" to wake it up—beginning what Amazon hopes will be a life-long (or at least, model life-long) friendship. Want to know the news? Echo streams it. Need someone to settle a bet? Echo calls up whatever information you need. Need something added to your shopping list? Echo—and Amazon—would be happy to oblige.
It is the conversational internet. A tangible, touchable piece of pseudo-furniture that filters data through a very smart-looking piece of voice recognition. The web strung across your living room—or better yet, kitchen. There's more potential in this little lightsaber handle than we know quite what to do with.
A True Assistant
The easiest way to describe Echo is by comparing it (her?) to its peers. It's like Siri, but furniture. It's like Cortana, except in your living room. It's like the voice recognition speaker Aether, or any number of other voice-controlled devices you can put in your home, except it does more. And it's made by Amazon.
Echo has plenty of peers, but all of them are bundled with other devices. Siri and Cortana live on your phone. Google's voice recognition is on your phone and computer. The genius of Echo is that it's a more nimble, leaner version of a technology that's been caged up inside of other devices for years. As Apple and Microsoft have struggled to engage consumers in the idea of voice recognition for your phone or your computer or your game console, Amazon snuck a device that puts essentially the same software front and center for no other purpose than to chat with you. Oh, and play you some tunes while it's at it.
Amazon has another advantage: It's an alternative path, a kind of dark horse compared to three products that are so similar, and similarly bound to compete with each other for market share. And importantly, it'll be cheap as hell for Amazon Prime members: Only $100, compared to a few hundred bucks (at least) for a phone that grants you Siri or Cortana access. In that sense, there's no other product on the market that can do what Echo does: Put dedicated, seemingly reliable, truly hands-free voice recognition in your home for a hundred bucks.
The IQ Test Awaits
Of course, none of this means that Echo will necessarily be a blockbuster success. As Tim Carmody pointed out on Twitter, the open question is still the quality of the artificial intelligence that forms that connective tissue of any of these systems. In fact, Echo may be a kind of litmus test for Amazon. A $100 device that rolls out slowly (you have to request an invite) will let the company cull data from across a broad range of users in a huge range of environments. And down the line—say, when Amazon decides to put Echo on the next Fire phone—its software will be battle-tested.
So Amazon has reversed the product pipeline of its competitors. Apple and Microsoft and Google put their AI on your phones or computers and have let it sit, improving it incrementally but never changing where and how we interact with it. Amazon is putting that software on your kitchen table—and in an app—and maybe someday, if it's good enough, it will be absorbed into an operating system.
For Amazon's hardware team, this is an important moment. Kindle's new Voyage e-reader was awesome, but crazily expensive, and its other dependable e-reader options haven't broken any molds. Meanwhile, all its other successes and failures have involved following in the footsteps of other companies: Fire phone was a flop. Fire TV was well-received but limited by its price, andFire TV Stick has a powerful direct competitor in the form of Chromecast. With Echo, the hardware team has hit on a design paradigm that's pretty much terra incognita, and they've made it inexpensive and accessible for just about everyone.
If it sucks, Echo could easily become yet another product on a long, decades-old list of failed AI. If it works, it will be world wide web floating through your house, the internet made tangible and speakable and liveable. Either way, Amazon's trying something brand new. And that's an exciting change of pace.

Amazon’s Echo and the smart TVs that are listening to and watching everything you do

Amazon’s Echo and the smart TVs that are listening to and watching everything you do
Pretty soon your toaster will soon be one of the few things that isn’t keeping track of your every move – or at least you’d hope so

 ‘Alexa, are you smarter than Dad?’ Photograph: Chris Schmidt/Getty Images
Sunday 9 November 2014 11.30 EST

Amazon’s Echo defies easy description. Actually, that’s not quite true: the easy way to describe it is “creepy as hell”. What’s trickier is explaining what it is.
The Echo (below) is a 20cm-tall black cylinder, that sits in your home and listens to everything you do. You will want it to do this, if Amazon’s marketing is to be believed, because it will be able to answer questions like, “who is Abraham Lincoln?” and perform simple tasks such as adding ice cream to your shopping or playing a Taylor Swift track. (You have to say the “wake word”, “Alexa”, before it will act on what it hears).
The device is like a hyped-up Siri or Google Now for your whole house. And it does have some impressive technology behind it, packing two speakers and seven microphones into its small case. But still, anyone who is comfortable with the idea of an always-on, Wifi-enabled obelisk listening to everything they say will probably be the first to die in the inevitable cyberwar of the 22nd century.
And that’s before we get to the fact that one of Amazon’s selling points for the device is that it’s “always getting smarter”. (Isn’t this how Terminator starts?)
But don’t think that just because you keep Echo out of your home that you’re safe. The same always-listening technology is already in a number of high-end mobile phones, from Apple’s iPhones to the latest Android phones from Google and Motorola (although it needs to be explicitly turned on before it will work). Even devices which you don’t purchase with the explicit aim of letting a major technology company track everything you say are still keeping an eye on you.
The Amazon Echo – for customers who are comfortable with the idea of an always-on, Wi-Fi-enabled obelisk listening to everything they say
Take the humble TV. Ten years ago, it was a one-way device, with shows being broadcast into your home and nothing coming out the other way; the idea of a two-way telly was straight out of 1984. Now, though, we have “smart TVs”, which let you watch catch-up TV, YouTube videos, access Facebook and more, without needing a separate set-top box. And, of course, they can collect your data and send it back home to manufacturers.
Last Christmas, British security researcher Jason Huntley revealed that TVs made by Korean firm LG were sharing information about what their users were watching, and also the names of files on any USB stick that owners plugged in. He discovered, buried deep in a settings list, an item labelled “collection of watching info”, which is set to “on” by default – but even after he switched it off, the TV continued sending data.
LG apologised, and issued a firmware update to fix affected TVs, but the newest crop are hardly any better, putting pop-up ads on screen in the middle of shows and again making it less than clear how to turn them off.
The list of items that will not track you is shrinking daily. It is already basically down to toasters and dishwashers – and I have seen companies announce “smart toasters” before. Maybe it is time to just give in now. Alexa? Tell Amazon that I surrender.