One thing a lot of us who write for and read Ars Technica have in common is that our technical experience often puts us in the position of having to provide tech support for our unenlightened family members. Whether it's Grandpa wondering why his PC is running so slow or your sister trying to set up her new printer so all the computers in the house can print to it, chances are we'll all be asked to play happy helpdesk worker during our trips home for the holidays. Today, we're collecting the best preventative tips for family tech support. The most inspired ideas from the comments below will be promoted up into this story. We'll start things off with three suggestions of our own. Forced OS updates: One way we've found of cutting down on family tech support issues is by making sure Windows Update is active and set to download and install automatically. For Mac OS X using family members, we make sure Software Update is set to check for and download updates automatically. … [Read more...] about Join our emergency meeting of the Luddite family support group
Oct. 23, 2001: The iPod The very first iPod launched with "1,000 songs in your pocket." It had 5GB of storage space, weighed 6.5 ounces, featured a 160 x 128 pixel display and FireWire connectivity and cost $399. July 2002: Second Generation iPod As well as an increased capacity topping out at 20GB, the second generation iPod got an important new feature -- Windows compatibility. This came not via iTunes, but through MUSICMATCH Jukebox, with software called "iPod for Windows." April 2003: Third Generation iPod 2003 was a big year for the Apple iPod. In April, the third generation model was introduced. Thinner and lighter, this complete redesign now boasted a touch-sensitive interface, dock connector and 30GB capacity. USB syncing and the launch of the iTunes Music Store solidified the early iPod ecosystem. These elements helped Apple hit some milestones in 2003 -- one million iPods sold (which rose to two million by the end of the year) and 25 … [Read more...] about Rest in Peace, iPod
Apple's iOS 6 update is almost a day old, and for iPhone and iPad users, there's much to love about this newborn. Despite a few odd glitches , it's a solid update. Everything seems to run faster, use less battery life, and there are all sorts of easter eggs (such as the delightful Panorama feature ) waiting to be uncovered. But if you're still waiting to upgrade, chances are it's for the one reason I heard over and over from iOS users Wednesday: you're reluctant to let go of the Google Maps app. Google Maps is replaced as the default in iOS 6 by Apple's own Maps. (Google has indicated it will bring out its own iOS app, though it doesn't seem to be in a hurry to release it.) Condemnation of Maps was swift and fierce. The lack of transit directions irked many. Entrepreneur Anil Dash unleashed a blistering attack on his blog, pointing out how many addresses in New York the app either got wrong or couldn't find (such as Bloomberg HQ). A parody Twitter account, @iOS6Maps, … [Read more...] about Apple’s Maps App: Just How Bad Is It?
Two pieces of ornate 16th-century armor have returned to the Louvre after a nearly four-decade absence. The elaborate breastplate and helmet were stolen from the renowned Paris museum on May 31, 1983, and then vanished for the next 38 years. Forged in Milan during the Italian Renaissance between 1560 and 1580, the metal armor was inlaid with gold and silver and is estimated to be worth about $603,000 (500,000 euros), the Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported on March 3. In January, a military antiquities expert spotted the armor after he was hired by an auctioneer for an estate auction appraisal in Bordeaux, France. He was suspicious about the armor's origins, so he notified officials with the French Central Office for the Fight against Trafficking in Cultural Goods (OCBC), a special police unit for tracking stolen property of historical and cultural importance. Authorities then identified the missing armor from a list maintained by Treima — an electronic database of … [Read more...] about ‘Exceptional’ Renaissance armor stolen from the Louvre 40 years ago is finally returned
A popular runner's device that combines Nike shoes with an iPod to track a workout could also be used by criminals to track a person's whereabouts. In fact, the hack is so easy and sneaky that someone might already be doing it and no one would know. The device, called Nike+iPod, employs a small computer chip in the shoe that beams data to a receiver attached to an iPod Nano. Some 450,000 of the $29 devices have been sold. But the signal can be tracked up to 60 feet away, a group of computer science students has found. They built a simple device [image] for less than $300 that hacks into the runner's gear. "It is easy for someone to use the Nike+iPod as a tracking device," says Scott Saponas, an avid runner and doctoral student in computer science at the University of Washington. "It's an example of how new gadgetry can erode our personal privacy." Coupled with GoogleMaps, the potentially nefarious device—no bigger than a matchbox—could be used to track a person … [Read more...] about Students Hack Popular Device to Track Jogger’s Whereabouts