Author Archives: Admin

Watch a Woman from the 1990s Explain What a Computer Is

One of the things that will never fail to make me happy: seeing people stuck in time explain what modern day technology is. Kim Komando hosted an educational series about computer and explains the basics of its hardware, DOS, Microsoft Windows, Writeand more. More »

    



The 12 Types of People Who Use Social Networks

At this point, you’re almost weirder if you don’t use any social networks than if you were a social media obsessive who tweets, Facebooks, Instagram and hashtags the hell out of your vocabulary. It’s how weird the world is now. Social networks are real life. But who are the people who make up these worlds? If there are 12 personality types in social networks, which one are you? More »

    



So much Opel in this handout from the company for a 1995 exhibit on the German-American automaker.

So much Opel in this handout from the company for a 1995 exhibit on the German-American automaker. Which would you take? (via AP Images)

So much Opel in this handout from the company for a 1995 exhibit on the German-American automaker.

So much Opel in this handout from the company for a 1995 exhibit on the German-American automaker. Which would you take? (via AP Images)

Supreme Court of Iceland rules firm must process donations for WikiLeaks

On Wednesday, the Icelandic Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling finding that Valitor (formerly VISA Iceland) had illegally terminated a contract with DataCell, WikiLeaks’ Icelandic Web host, thereby stopping processing donations to the embattled site.

Valitor will now be forced to pay 800,000 Icelandic krónur ($6,824) per day if the gateway to WikiLeaks donations is not reopened within 15 days, according to the group.

“This is a victory for free speech,” said Julian Assange, the site’s founder, in an online statement. “This is a victory against the rise of economic censorship to crack down against journalists and publishers. We thank the Icelandic people for showing that they will not be bullied by powerful Washington backed financial services companies like Visa. And we send out a warning to the other companies involved in this blockade: you’re next.”

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Shorter Naps, Imgur Galleries, and the Evernote Web Clipper

Readers offer their best tips for waking up quickly, downloading galleries from Imgur, and saving new things to Evernote.

Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons—maybe they’re a bit too niche, maybe we couldn’t find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn’t fit it in—the tip didn’t make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favorites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Add it in the comments, email it to tips at lifehacker.com, or share it over at our user-run blog, Hackerspace.

Smooth the Transition Out of Dreamland by Sleeping Backwards

Chillychili finds a better way to wake up quickly:

Sometimes we wake up, realize it’s already 6:30 (20 minutes too late too trudge through your home city’s traffic in time), and quickly rush through breakfast to make it to work or school, realizing a bit too late that it’s 6:30 at night. We often don’t think much when we wake up due to drowsiness and just go on autopilot.

One way to avoid this is to sleep with the positions of your feet and head reversed for naps, days you need to catch a flight, weekends, or really any occasion that differs from your normal sleep. Immediately after waking up, your spatial awareness informs you of your place in time.

Photo by Martin Cathrae.

Add /zip to Imgur Galleries to Download All Photos at Once

Michael van Dorst discovers a tip for Imgur users:

If you view an album on Imgur, add /zip to the URL to download the whole album as a .zip file.

Save Anything with Evernote’s Web Clipper and IFTTT

Wickedcupofjoe shares a solution to a problem she has on Pinterest:

I don’t know why this didn’t dawn on me earlier, but this morning it hit me like a ton of bricks: Pinterest—as much as I love thee—is horrible at storing information. In my meager little hunt for a meatball entrée, I came across quite a few incorrectly pinned (a peeve for another time) recipes, as well as recipes where the link was dead. Which means, I’m stuck looking at delicious food images of entrées I’ll never be able to recreate. Luckily >this gal!< is technically inclined and knew to look for the cached page. Score!

In an attempt to make life easier for others, I attempted to place the recipe itself as the description of the pin, however, you’re limited to 500 characters. The recipe I wanted to save had 679, and no matter how I abbreviated and removed excess characters, it wasn’t fitting.

After fighting the character limit for a few moments, I raised the white flag and opened up Evernote. I’m still an on-again/off-again Evernote user (though I have bookmarked Whitson’s article on how to use Evernote correctly and give it a full go once again) so it’s usually moments like this when I open it.

I do utilize an IFTTT recipe that auto-saves any pin I create in Pinterest to Evernote, but that’s not going to solve any dead links.

Wickedcupofjoe touches on a lot of issues here, but that IFTTT recipe is really what interests me here—you could use it with a lot of services, not just Pinterest, to save stuff and make it a lot easier to find later.

Restore Arrow Key Navigation in Gmail’s Preview Pane Lab

Dustin Luck revives a dead Gmail feature:

About a month ago, Google decided to release a new feature that allowed using the arrow keys to navigate up and down in the thread list. Unfortunately, that meant that the arrow keys no longer work for scrolling the message body when the Preview Pane lab is enabled. I finally had enough, and wrote a Greasemonkey script to re-enable scrolling the preview pane with arrows. I’ve done some testing and it seems pretty stable. If you’re interested in trying it out, go for it. If you have any feedback, you can leave it in the forum on the userscripts site.

Shorter Naps, Imgur Galleries, and the Evernote Web Clipper

Readers offer their best tips for waking up quickly, downloading galleries from Imgur, and saving new things to Evernote.

Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons—maybe they’re a bit too niche, maybe we couldn’t find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn’t fit it in—the tip didn’t make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favorites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Add it in the comments, email it to tips at lifehacker.com, or share it over at our user-run blog, Hackerspace.

Smooth the Transition Out of Dreamland by Sleeping Backwards

Chillychili finds a better way to wake up quickly:

Sometimes we wake up, realize it’s already 6:30 (20 minutes too late too trudge through your home city’s traffic in time), and quickly rush through breakfast to make it to work or school, realizing a bit too late that it’s 6:30 at night. We often don’t think much when we wake up due to drowsiness and just go on autopilot.

One way to avoid this is to sleep with the positions of your feet and head reversed for naps, days you need to catch a flight, weekends, or really any occasion that differs from your normal sleep. Immediately after waking up, your spatial awareness informs you of your place in time.

Photo by Martin Cathrae.

Add /zip to Imgur Galleries to Download All Photos at Once

Michael van Dorst discovers a tip for Imgur users:

If you view an album on Imgur, add /zip to the URL to download the whole album as a .zip file.

Save Anything with Evernote’s Web Clipper and IFTTT

Wickedcupofjoe shares a solution to a problem she has on Pinterest:

I don’t know why this didn’t dawn on me earlier, but this morning it hit me like a ton of bricks: Pinterest—as much as I love thee—is horrible at storing information. In my meager little hunt for a meatball entrée, I came across quite a few incorrectly pinned (a peeve for another time) recipes, as well as recipes where the link was dead. Which means, I’m stuck looking at delicious food images of entrées I’ll never be able to recreate. Luckily >this gal!< is technically inclined and knew to look for the cached page. Score!

In an attempt to make life easier for others, I attempted to place the recipe itself as the description of the pin, however, you’re limited to 500 characters. The recipe I wanted to save had 679, and no matter how I abbreviated and removed excess characters, it wasn’t fitting.

After fighting the character limit for a few moments, I raised the white flag and opened up Evernote. I’m still an on-again/off-again Evernote user (though I have bookmarked Whitson’s article on how to use Evernote correctly and give it a full go once again) so it’s usually moments like this when I open it.

I do utilize an IFTTT recipe that auto-saves any pin I create in Pinterest to Evernote, but that’s not going to solve any dead links.

Wickedcupofjoe touches on a lot of issues here, but that IFTTT recipe is really what interests me here—you could use it with a lot of services, not just Pinterest, to save stuff and make it a lot easier to find later.

Restore Arrow Key Navigation in Gmail’s Preview Pane Lab

Dustin Luck revives a dead Gmail feature:

About a month ago, Google decided to release a new feature that allowed using the arrow keys to navigate up and down in the thread list. Unfortunately, that meant that the arrow keys no longer work for scrolling the message body when the Preview Pane lab is enabled. I finally had enough, and wrote a Greasemonkey script to re-enable scrolling the preview pane with arrows. I’ve done some testing and it seems pretty stable. If you’re interested in trying it out, go for it. If you have any feedback, you can leave it in the forum on the userscripts site.

Mitsubishi Credits Non-Existent Website With Praise For Its Worst Car

It’s hard to defend the Mitsubishi Galant these days. The current one has been around since 2003, and we’ve called it the worst car still for sale on a number of occasions. But one website seems willing to stick up for the Galant, and that’s itrasi.net. Except that doesn’t seem to be an actual site.

A quote on the Galant section of Mitsubishi’s website says "The Galant is a family sedan with both heart and style," a quote they attribute to something called itrasi.net. Going to itrasi.net gives you a 404 error, and the only mentions of the site that can be found in a Google search are in the context of their quote about the Galant.

As for that quote, it also appears on the "accolades" section of their website, where it is accurately attributed to Edmunds.com. It does conveniently leave off the second part of that quote, the extremely unflattering "However, when compared to its more illustrious chief rivals, the Galant fades into the background as it’s lacking in practicality, build quality and a few key features." Maybe that’s why they won’t say it came from Edmunds.

The really weird thing is that this is nothing new. VWVortex pointed out way back in 2010 that Mitsubishi was quoting a non-existent website for the Galant. The site has been redesigned since then, but the quote is still there.

So here’s what we can learn from this: no one cares about the Galant anymore. Not even the people at Mitsubishi, who apparently don’t look at their own website. (Or at least, the Galant section of it.)

We’ve reached out to Mitsubishi about this one, so let’s hear what they have to say about it.

Throw & Grow Confetti Turns Celebrations Into Lush Flower Gardens

Are you worried about the eco-impact of all that tossed confetti at your upcoming nuptials? Or maybe you don’t want to have to pay someone to clean it all up. Either way, just opt for Niko Niko’s new Throw & Grow eco-friendly confetti. Made of a biodegradable paper-like material shaped like little blossoms, the confetti is filled with seeds that will eventually sprout into a patch of wildflowers. More »

    



“Churnalism” tracker catches journalists copying press releases, Wikipedia

“Churnalism” is a term for the practice of journalists publishing press releases verbatim, or almost verbatim, rather than writing original copy. A few years ago, UK organization Media Standards Trust created an online tool, churnalism.com, that allows users to compare text to a database of articles from UK national newspapers, the BBC, and so on, to see whether or not those media outlets are simply copying and pasting. Great for consumers of UK media, but churnalism is a global problem. Thanks to a collaboration between the Sunlight Foundation and the Media Standards Trust, consumers of US news now have a similar resource, Churnalism US.

The developers at Sunlight have created a database of press releases from clearing houses like EurekAlert and MarketWire as well as from RSS feeds that capture PR from Fortune 500 companies, important non-profits and think tanks, trade organizations, Congressional offices, and also Wikipedia. Users can enter URLs or pasted text into Churnalism (or install a browser extension) at which point the text of the article is hashed and compared to the database for matches. By using sliding windows of hashes, SuperFastMatch (yes, that name is awesome) lets Churnalism US narrow down rapidly on possible matches, at which point the front end takes over and analyzes the similarities. Does the news post have the same quote? Are there giant blocks of identical text? And so on. In addition to identifying straight copy-paste jobs, Churnalism US should also be able to highlight cases where quotes have been selectively edited or used without context.

Sunlight’s goal with Churnalism US is to let us track the influence of ideas throughout the media, and the approach the US tool takes seems a little more intuitive and user-friendly than the UK version, which compares user-entered press releases to a database of news articles. But by including EurekAlert in its database, Sunlight also created a tool that will help draw more attention to the churnalism that seems to be endemic in science writing, where you’re more likely than ever to come across a barely altered press release masquerading as science journalism. It was this problem that actually inspired me to start writing Science.Ars back in 2004, where I took what seemed to be a novel step in only writing about something once I’d read the actual paper, a practice we continue to this day (and one that others, such as the research blogging movement, have also adopted).

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