But First, Let Me Take a Selfie Part 2- 11.23.16

How to get Pulitzer Prize-winning photo with the camera that is always with you.

Is your phone less than two years old and the battery can't make it to lunch? The truth is, phone manufacturers design the battery to fail – or get so bad – that you have no choice but to get a new one after two years. However, charging your battery properly will help to prolong your phone's life.

The best way to keep your phone lasting all day is to not charge it all night.  This is commonly referred to as “over charging” a battery. Most phones only take three hours to fully charge; the extra 4-5 hours while you sleep are spent crippling a battery's capacity. Think of a battery as a small room and electricity as people going in and out of it. As you use your phone during the day, electricity leaves the battery – or people leave the room.  Over charging a battery is like pushing more people into a room than can fit into it. Your battery is going to get hurt and will gradually deteriorate.  My recommendation is to charge your phone for a few hours at a time during the day. 

 To cut your charging time in half, use an iPad charger brick instead of the one that came with your phone. But beware: because a brick charges your phone so much faster, you run the risk of forgetting about it and letting it charge too long. 

The best precaution you can take is to simply not let your phone die. Permanent damage is done to the battery if you allow it to drain completely. That being said, most phones turn off before the battery dies to prevent this. The problem occurs when it turns off due to low battery and you fail to immediately charge it back up.  The battery is still being used at this point, even if the phone has turned itself off.

 The easiest way to stay on top of the situation is to check the battery's percentage. This figure can appear right next to the icon if you turn it on in Settings.  For iPhones, go to Setting>General>Usage> then toggle “Battery Percentage” to ON. For Android, I recommend an app called  Battery Percentage.  For Window Phones, go to the Action Center to view the battery's percentage.

 Hopefully these tips will help your battery last past lunch to dinner or even to that midnight snack.

Head Up in the Clouds- 11.23.16

What is the cloud and why does everyone talk about

But First, Let Me Take a Selfie* Part 1- 11.23.16

How to get the most for the little camera that smiles back.

Most phones have two cameras, one that shows you what you are looking at and a selfie camera.  The selfie camera may not be the best camera but it has a great use--looking at yourself! It even works great as a mirror! Most of my generation is preoccupied trying to get the best selfie. I have gotten it down to a science; stretch your arm all the way out and raise your arm slightly up. This will cause fewer shadows and make you look less like the Creature From the Black Lagoon. Do not take a photo of yourself head on and never take it from below. This will increase shadows, which makes lines and other imperfections more noticeable. Well, now you are faced with a problem: how can you hold your phone and press the shutter button on the screen? Simple. Don't. Instead you should use the volume button on the side of the phone. This works on iPhones and some Androids and Windows phones. If not check under camera settings to set it up or maybe your phone is lucky enough to have a real shutter button on the side of your phone. This is mainly true for older phones.  

Have you see that box that sometime shows up around your face on the screen? Well that’s your phone recognizing your face and it doing everything it can to make it look the best it can. If your phone does not recognize your face or if you want the phone to focus on something else just tap on it on the screen.

*Selfie means to take a picture of yourself and has even inspired a song

“Did you back it up to the cloud?” is the first thing you will be ask when you bring your phone/table/computer/electronic that has very thing that matters on it to get it fixed. If you answer is “what is the cloud” do not look up at the sky but down your screen.

The cloud is not magic, despite what my mom says, it very simple. Its a computer that you can connect to through the Internet. This computer can do many things for you like save a copy of you picture and documents to perform tasks the computer in front of you cannot do. Think of it as your extra computer that cannot accidentally drop in the sink. This is why it is a great place to back up your computer and phone to. This is something that should be done once a month, more if its for business.

The clouds that you would most like run into are; iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, OneDrive and Office356. They all basically do the same thing-save your stuff. Many offer features only available through the cloud like that ability to have multiple working the same work document as the same time (iCould, Google Drive, Office365 and OneDrive). A must collaboration projects, people can be in the same room or opposite end of the earth.  The different clouds correspond to different companys, iCloud is with Apple, Google Drive is with Google, Box and Dropbox are there own companies, both Office356 and OneDrive are with Microsoft. Office365 is for companies and OneDrive is you and me.

Now thats great and all but why is everyone in love with the clouds. Now the device in front of you does not limit what is can do. Lets say there is a song that you want to listen to that is not on your phone, well now you can it sent from the cloud to your phone when you want it and then leave when your done with it.

 The cloud is the best computer you never see.     

Bettering Your Battery- 11.23.16

Whether it's a family portrait or a quick snap of your grocery list, taking a great picture on your phone can save you from meeting to bring an extra thing with you.

No matter what brand of phone you have or how old it is, your front facing camera is always the best camera on your phone. This is because it is bigger – and bigger is better. The front-facing camera has extra features built in. For example, iPhones have HDR which means when you press the shutter button multiple photos are taken. Your phone then takes the best part of each shot and stitches them together. This can be turned on by going to the camera app and pressing HDR on the top of the screen and then pressing “auto.”  If you do not see that option, then “switch camera” icon the top right of the screen. For older iPhones, go to the Settings app>Photos & Camera>turn on “Use HDR”.

Why be the photographer of your from group? Try taking a panoramic photo, this is where your phone become more skilled than an actual camera. To start, go to the panoramic option in the camera app. For iPhone, swipe right anywhere on the screen twice. For other phones it maybe a button or under “menu” in the camera. Point the camera at the left-most point of what you are photographing and click the shutter button. As smoothly as you can, either turn your phone to the right or moves the phone to the right. When your done, press the shutter button again.

Now you’re taking all these great photos what are you supposed to do with them? Facebook, instead of having to get the photos developed and putting them into an albums, you can just stick them online and they will live forever. Putting photos on Facebook also save you the hassle of having to pull out the album every time you want to show someone a picture. When they are on Facebook, they can now be seen by everyone in your life. Stay tuned for later blog about Facebook edict.