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Tech News and Commentary
Dave and the team discuss IFA announcing a full in person show this year, Musk buying Twitter, a Blockhead, the Boring company’s valuation, Google’s incorrect words, DJI suspending sales in Russia, and more.
Dan in Wilmington, Delaware listens on WDEL and asked: “I’m looking for a new – either laptop or Chromebook. Trying to decide which would be the best option for moderate home activity – spreadsheets, a little bit of Word documents – specifically for my father, late 70s and not too tech savvy. I’d like to find something that’s easy for him to use that keeps him stimulated but not as complicated as maybe a PC. Any recommendations that would be good for someone who’s a senior citizen? Nowadays everything is e-mail and unfortunately his phone is too small for him to use the QWERTY keyboard.”
Dan, if you want something that is not as complicated as a PC then a laptop is automatically out.
A laptop is just a portable PC as opposed to a desktops stationary PC.
A Chromebook would definitely be a much easier option. It would restrict him to mainly using a browser which should be enough for text editing and spreadsheets, but he wont be able to open standalone Word, hell have to go to Microsofts site to use the online version of it. The same goes for spreadsheeting, he can use Excel or a competitor like Google Sheets, but it will be something online rather than the full Excel interface.
If the only problem is that his phone is too small, but otherwise his needs would be met by a phone, then a tablet may be the solution.
Theyre bigger if he wants to use the screen, theyre simpler than a full laptop but more powerful and versatile than a Chromebook, and it is possible to connect a keyboard to them to make typing easier for him.
In terms of pricing the ranges are so wide that you can find a cheap version of any of those devices and an extremely expensive version of any of those devices, so this will mostly come down to personal preference and what hed prefer.
Heather in Idaho Falls, Idaho is participating by clicking the AskDave microphone at IntoTomorrow.com and asked: “I’ve recently switched Internet services, which means I’ve had to switch my routers. Now, my Chromebook won’t print to my Epson 7700 air printer. So any help with that would be great.”
Heather, Chromebooks print via a service called Google Cloud Print.
Google Cloud Print relies on two things:
The printer being able to connect to the service. In your case, we know that it can if you used to be able to print.
The Chromebook being set up to use the Google Cloud Print account.
As long as the Chromebook can get online, it should still be able to connect to the same Google Cloud Print account you were using before.
The most likely culprit is the printer. If your networks name or password changed then the printer wont be able to connect to them and therefore wont be able to get online and reach Google Cloud Prints servers.
Wed start there, check the printers settings and make sure it can still connect to the internet. You may find that its not connected and therefore cannot be reached by the Chromebook.
Lori in Whitehouse, Texas asked: “Some people say that just to replace batteries after a decade on an electric car, can cost up to $20,000. And then, what about a warranty? How long does the warranty last on those batteries? Just checking.”
Lori, the warranties depend on the make and model. Be careful when you research them because theyre not all the same even if they look the same.
For example, the Chevy Bolt, Nissan Leaf, and the various Tesla models all come with an 8-year warranty.
The Chevy and Nissan models limit the warranty to 100,000 miles and Tesla doesnt limit theirs based on miles, which on the surface sounds like a better deal.
Its not, however, because Chevy and Nissan will replace the battery if it falls below a certain charge level (typically around 80% of the original charge) while Tesla wont. So an unlimited mile warranty that allows them to say no, its ok, its not broken if its running at 3% capacity, enjoy your 7 mile range is not very valuable.
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