Digital painting and drawing on the cheap

Digital DrawingWhen you hear the term, “digital art”, you might think of artistic nerds sitting in cramped cubicles churning out Pixaresque blockbusters using roomfuls of supercomputers.

As it turns out, digital art isn’t just for fancy-pants productions anymore…

If you’ve ever done some drawing, oil painting, cave painting, or whatever, you really might like digital art.

It just so happens that there are some very powerful and very inexpensive digital art gizmos available now that can do a whole lot more than you might think…

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All about smartphone and tablet tethering

Android USB TetherYou may have heard about tethering, but it probably seems a bit mysterious and complicated.

Tethering is when you connect your smartphone or tablet to your puter, and then use your mobile device’s data connection to surf the internet on your puter.

Well, to put it another way: your puter uses your smartphone (or your tablet’s 4G connection) as its internet connection instead of your normal DSL, cable, fiber, etc.

Tethering can be done in several ways, and it’s much easier to set up than you think!

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PPI, Retina displays, and what makes a screen ‘good’

Retina PPIIf you’ve read any reviews recently about phones, tablets, and other gizmos, you’ve probably come across a lot of talk of PPI (Pixels Per Inch) and “Retina” screens.

In short, the number of pixels crammed into a device’s screen seems to be uber-important to which gizmos get the best reviews.

But hang on a minute… Just what do these numbers mean?

Does it really matter that much?

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A crash course in 4K UHD, or Ultra High Definition

4K for SmartiesFor awhile now, the talk of the town has been “4K”. We hear a lot about it, and you can even buy a 4K television.

On the other hand, 4K content hasn’t really hit the mainstream yet. In fact, it hardly exists at all.

We do have plenty of new TVs and Blu-ray players that have “4K” printed on them, though.

So what is this magical new format? What is 4K? What is UHD? More importantly, should you care?

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Lithium Polymer vs Lithium-Ion batteries: What’s the deal?

LiPo = Li-ionIf you’ve got any kind of gizmo – laptop, tablet, e-book reader, cell phone, MP3 player, cordless screwdriver or drill, etc. – then you’re using lithium-ion batteries all the time.

Lithium-ion batteries, often abbreviated as Li-ion, are extremely common these days.

But what about so-called Lithium Polymer batteries, also called LiPo or Li-poly batteries? Are they really better?

If you believe the marketing folks, yes they are. But, as it turns out, you’ve been fooled just like me!

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Why Movies look like Soap Operas on your new TV – and how to fix it

Soap Opera EffectYou buy a new 400″ TV. You hook it up, and pop in a DVD or Blu-ray disc.

You expect to enjoy a glorious movie-watching experience, but instead, your movies look like TV shows or soap operas.

What gives?

As it turns out, the problem is your fancy new TV. Get ready for this: it’s too realistic, and your brain doesn’t like that.

Read on to find out how to fix it!

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Android: Copy everything from one device to another

My Backup Pro - SHABAM!Let’s say you get a new phone or tablet, and both are running Android. You’d like to copy everything from your old device to your new one. How do you do it?

Well, certainly there are more hardcore methods of migrating all your data. Most of these methods require “rooting” your device, and are probably a bit too involved for most people.

Of course, if you back everything up on the Google Cloud, so to speak, most things will easily transfer from one gizmo to another.

But, not everybody likes Big Brother storing everything and synchronizing it automagically. I certainly don’t!

The easiest option I have found is one you have to pay for – but at only a few dollars, it’s a fabulous deal…

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