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macOS Sonoma Features
Dec 01, 2023   09:50 AM

macOS Sonoma is the latest version of Apple's Mac operating system. It introduces several new features and enhancements. macOS Sonoma is the latest major release of macOS, Apple's operating system for Macintosh computers. The successor to macOS Ventura, it was released on September 26, 2023. Following below are some of the notable features of macOS Sonoma.

Interactive Desktop Widgets: macOS Sonoma introduces interactive desktop widgets that fade into the background when not in use, allowing you to focus on the active app or window. All you have to do is right-click with your mouse or double-click your trackpad on your desktop and a menu will pop out. You can select Edit Widgets and a widget menu will appear for a variety of applications.

Web Apps: With macOS Sonoma, you can now access web apps directly from your desktop, providing a seamless experience between native and web applications.

New Videoconferencing Features: macOS Sonoma brings updated videoconferencing features, enhancing your experience during video calls. Presenter Overlay, a new video effect, elevates a user’s presence by displaying them on top of the content they are sharing. Additionally, Reactions allow users to share how they feel by seamlessly adding balloons, confetti, hearts, and more into the video, which can also be triggered with a hand gesture.

Enhancements to Safari: macOS Sonoma includes enhancements to Safari, Apple's web browser. These enhancements may include features like Safari profiles, Safari web apps, and improved password and passkey sharing. Private Browsing provides even greater protection during browsing both from trackers and from people who might have access to the user’s device. Profiles help users stay organized by offering a way to separate browsing between topics, while also keeping cookies, history, extensions, Tab Groups, and Favorites separate.

Shortcuts Widget: macOS Sonoma introduces the Shortcuts widget, allowing you to run shortcuts from your Mac.

Improved Connectivity with iPhone: macOS Sonoma features enhancements that bridge the gap between your Mac and iPhone, making them feel more connected than ever.

It's worth mentioning that macOS Sonoma is a free update for Apple hardware, but older devices might not be supported. To check if your Mac is compatible with macOS Sonoma, you can go to the Apple menu, click on "About This Mac," and check the list of supported models. Overall, macOS Sonoma aims to enhance productivity, creativity, and connectivity for Mac users.

Top Websites in the USA
Oct 24, 2023   12:01 PM

Here’s a list of the top websites visited in the USA based on a review of data from Semrush, Similarweb, Ahrefs and Rock Content.

  1. Google.com – owned and operated by Google LLC, it is the most popular search engine and provides a wide range of services and products including: Google Workspace, Google Cloud, Google One, Google Docs, Sheets and Slides, Google Meet and Google Trends.
  2. Youtube.com – the free video sharing website allows users to watch, upload and share videos. Originally created in 2005, it has since become one of the most popular sites on the web, with visitors watching around 6B hours of video every month . YouTube offers a wide range of content, including music videos, tutorials, vlogs, documentaries, and much more. Users can create their own channels, subscribe to other channels, and interact with content creators and the YouTube community through comments, likes, and shares.
  3. Reddit.com – the social news and discussion website allows registered users, known as redditors, to submit and vote on content. It was founded in 2005 and has grown to become one of the most popular platforms on the internet, with millions of users and communities covering a wide range of topics.
  4. Facebook.com – the social networking site allows users to connect with friends, family, and colleagues. Founded in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg and his college roommates at Harvard University, Facebook has grown to become one of the most popular social media platforms, with over 2.23B active users.
  5. Amazon.com – the e-commerce platform and technology company was founded by Jeff Bezos in 1994. It started as an online marketplace for books and has since expanded to offer a wide range of products and services.
  6. Yahoo.com – started as a web directory in 1994, Yahoo now offers many services including email, news, finance and search.
  7. Wikipedia.org – the free online encyclopedia is created and edited by volunteers from around the world. Launched in 2001, the goal of Wikipedia is to provide a comprehensive and reliable source of information on a wide range of topics.
  8. Duckduckgo.com – this search engine provides an alternative to popular search engines by emphasizing user privacy by not tracking or storing personal information.
  9. Twitter.com – the social networking site allows users to post and interact with short messages known as tweets. Launched in 2006, the popular platform is used for sharing information, news and updates.
  10. Instagram.com – launched in 2010, this social media platform focuses on photo and video sharing.
  11. Imdb.com - also known as the Internet Movie Database, it provides information related to films, television series, podcasts, home videos, video games and streaming content. The sites gives cast and crew details, plot summaries, trivia, ratings, reviews and more.
  12. Discord.com – The communication platform allows users to chat, voice call and video call with friends and communities. It was initially designed for gamers but has expanded to cater to various interests and communities beyond gaming.
Your Internet Browser Primer
Sep 11, 2023   11:47 AM

Here are some key factors to consider when comparing internet browsers:

 Speed and Performance 

  • Look for browsers that offer fast page load times and smooth browsing experiences.
  • Consider the browser's resource usage, such as RAM and CPU usage, as this can impact overall performance. 

Security and Privacy 

  • Check for built-in security features such as anti-tracking, anti-phishing, and malware protection.
  • Look for browsers that offer robust privacy settings and options for controlling data collection and sharing. 

Compatibility and Cross-Platform Support 

  • Consider the browser's compatibility with different operating systems (Windows, macOS, Linux, etc.).
  • Check if the browser is available on mobile platforms (iOS, Android) if you need cross-device synchronization. 

User Interface and Customization 

  • Evaluate the browser's user interface and determine whether it is intuitive and easy to navigate.
  • Look for customization options such as themes, extensions, and add-ons to personalize your browsing experience. 

Features and Functionality 

  • Consider the availability of features like tab management, bookmark syncing, built-in PDF viewers, and password managers.
  • Check if the browser supports web technologies like HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript for better compatibility with modern websites and web applications. 

Developer Support and Community 

  • Evaluate the browser's development community and support for extensions and plugins.
  • Look for regular updates and bug fixes to ensure a secure and up-to-date browsing experience. 

Popular Internet Browsers 

  • Google Chrome: Known for its speed, simplicity, and extensive extension ecosystem. It’s available on all major platforms, and the mobile version offers syncing of bookmarks, passwords and settings. There’s no VPN, no cryptocurrency locker, no note feature, and no screenshot tool. Chrome does allow for multiple user profiles. 
  • Mozilla Firefox: Offers a balance between speed, privacy and customization options. Its Multi-Account Containers extension lets you sequester multiple logins to the same site on different tabs. Without it, you'd have to open a private browsing window or another browser to sign out of all your web accounts and start a fresh session. This browser is in the vanguard of supporting new HTML and CSS capabilities, and it’s is working on open-source AR and speech synthesis standards. It offers a full password management service called Lockwise, sync them between devices, and secure everything under a strong master password. That and its VPN offering are paid extras. 
  • Microsoft Edge: Built on the Chromium engine, it offers fast performance and deep integration with Windows. It now runs on Apple macOS and Windows 11 and earlier. Mobile versions for Android and iPhone let you sync history, favorites and passwords. It is a leader in performance, thrifty memory management, and disk usage. Startup Boost technology reduces the time it takes to open the browser, and sleeping tabs save memory on tabs you're not viewing. Edge's Efficiency mode can extend laptop battery life. 
  • Safari: The default browser for Apple devices, known for its speed and privacy features. In macOS Monterey, the browser gained a compact tab bar with floating tabs like Firefox's and Tab Groups that live in a convenient sidebar, and with Ventura, they become shareable and pinnable. It also supports Apple's proprietary Shared with You feature in its proprietary iMessage system. For iCloud+ subscribers, a Private Relay obscures your IP address, similar to a VPN. If you use an iPhone and a Mac, Safari integration makes a lot of sense, since Apple’s Handoff feature lets you continue your browsing session between devices. 
  • Opera: Features a built-in VPN, ad blocker, and other handy tools. The built-in VPN (actually an encrypted proxy server) protects and reroutes traffic from Opera to cloak your IP address. Opera uses the Chromium page-rendering engine, so you'll rarely run into site incompatibilities, and performance is fast. The built-in ad blocker also blocks crypto-mining scripts and trackers. Ad blocking also means less data consumed. 

Remember, the "best" browser ultimately depends on your specific needs and preferences. It's a good idea to try out different browsers and see which one feels the most comfortable and meets your requirements.

Labor Day Tech Deals
Aug 31, 2023   03:03 PM
Streaming Surpasses Cable as the Top Way to Consume TV
Aug 21, 2023   03:46 PM

Streaming now makes up more than one-third of all U.S. TV consumption, according to data from Nielsen's monthly Gauge study of TV consumption. Netflix is the top streaming platform, followed by YouTube, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+ and HBO Max.

The way we consume TV continues significant transformation. Gone are the days of flipping through channels on a cable box. With the rise of streaming services, the traditional cable model has taken a backseat as more people turn to digital platforms for their video fix.

Streaming platforms offer a vast library of content, accessible at any time, and from any device with an internet connection. Additionally, the ability to binge-watch entire seasons or series in one sitting has become a popular trend, allowing viewers to consume content at their own pace.

Whether it's on a smartphone, tablet, smart TV, or laptop, streaming viewers have the freedom to access their favorite content at their convenience. This flexibility has made streaming services a preferred choice for those who value their time and want to tailor their viewing experience to fit their lifestyle.

Another factor contributing to the success of streaming services is their cost-effectiveness. Cable subscriptions often come with hefty monthly fees, coupled with additional charges for premium channels, equipment rentals and installation fees. On the other hand, streaming services offer affordable subscription plans, allowing viewers to access a wide variety of content at a fraction of the cost. This affordability has attracted many cord-cutters, who are seeking to reduce their monthly expenses without compromising on entertainment quality.

Streaming services have also gained a competitive edge by offering original content that is exclusive to their platforms. With critically acclaimed shows like "Stranger Things," "The Handmaid's Tale," and "Mindhunter," streaming services have proven their ability to produce high-quality content that rivals traditional network TV.