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Palindrome Consulting Blog

Palindrome Consulting has been serving the Hollywood area since 1999, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Five cool tips for a cool laptop

Laptops are invaluable machines that allow you to take the office with you, without having to lug around a massive desktop. What is also really useful about them is that most new laptops have the same power as desktops but in a much smaller case. There is a price to be paid however: Cram enough components into a small space and they will generate heat. Lots of heat. Excessive temperatures aren't good for laptops, and need to be addressed.

Here's five tips on how to reduce the heat your laptop generates

Keep it out of the heat and sun - Laptops are designed to operate within a set heat range (usually between 30 and 55 Celsius or 86 to 131 Fahrenheit). If the ambient temperature is high, the laptop's operating temperature will be higher, which will greatly increase component wear and the chances of your device overheating. It's best to keep your laptop in a cooler room and out of the sun. If that's not possible, turn off your computer when it's not in use.

Put your laptop on your desk, not the couch - Those pieces of rubber on the corners of the underside of your laptop are like tiny feet, they are meant to provide enough space for air to circulate under the device and cool it. You'll notice that if you keep your laptop on a fabric surface like a couch or table with a tablecloth, the bottom gets really hot. To avoid this, it's best to keep your laptop on a solid, flat surface.

Don't use your laptop on your lap - Despite the name, laptops don't the best thing to use on your lap. There have been incidents in the past of laptops overheating and burning users. This happens because air can't circulate under the laptop and pull heat away. So best to keep your laptop on a flat surface rather than on your lap.

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What are 3 hardware trends for 2013?

If 2012 had anything to show, it's that the demand and use of technology is growing in all sectors. As this demand grows many businesses are looking into tech related trends. It's these trends that could shape or change the way businesses operate in the future.

Here's our prediction of the top three hardware trends small to medium businesses can expect in the coming year.

Phones and tablets that fly The processing power and capabilities of both smartphones and tablets are advancing at a rapid pace. From the looks of it there should be an octo-core mobile processor (8 cores) introduced along with increasingly powerful quad-core processors. If an 8 core phone surfaces in 2013 it will give many modern computers a run for their money.

Four-core processors will also increase in power. For example: Samsung is rumored to be working with a new processor that could very well see speeds of up to 2Ghz (on par with entry to mid level computers). Sound like overkill for a phone? Perhaps, but put that processor in a tablet and you could see a mobile device that can handle almost anything.

Regardless of if these rumored processors make it into devices or not, small business owners should expect to see a wealth of phones and tablets that are not only affordable, but are powerful enough to either implement as an extension of the modern desktop, or even replace it.

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Solid-state drives have 5 great benefits

One of the more important components of computers, and any electronic device really, is the hard drive. The most popular drive is the hard disk drive (HDD) which has been in use in computers since the mid 1950s. It's safe to say that these drives are a little past their prime but luckily there is a replacement: solid-state drives (SSD).

You've likely heard of SSDs - drives that have no moving parts - and you may have even looked at the price of them. Yes, they are more expensive when compared with the aging HDD platform, SSDs however have a number of benefits over their cheaper cousins.

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Wonder why your computer’s running slow?

With the recent release of Windows 8, many PC users have been looking to upgrade from older systems that are slow and unresponsive. It’s not just Windows users, in fact, an increasing number of Mac users are noticing this as well. Many attribute this to the fact that a computer is old, but there are other factors at play as well.

Here’s five reasons why your computer may run slow:

It’s all in the mind Well, mostly all in the mind. Technology, especially laptops and mobile devices, is advancing at such a fast pace that new devices constantly push speed boundaries. Use a laptop from last year and it just feels slow, when in truth the difference between last year;s and this year’s model is normally not noticeable performance wise.

Another reason is because of the other devices we use. Think of any new flagship mobile device, it's really fast; most of us have and use these devices on a daily basis. While they may not look it on paper, many mobile apps are simply faster than their desktop counterparts.

Think of accessing email on your computer.You have to find the program, click on it, wait for it to load and then wait for the program to fetch new emails. Compare this to your mobile device where you tap the Email icon, and have nearly instant access. While both programs offer the same service, they do work differently with the mobile apps, constantly looking for emails while computer counterparts usually look for emails only when the program is open. This usually means the mobile app is perceived to be quicker.

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How to clean your computer 101

The person who designed a white keyboard and white laptops should be fired. Sure, they look spiffy when you unbox them, but after a few months of use some keys have gone a lovely shade of light brown, and the body of that once pristine computer is decidedly less so. This should be a clue that your computer needs to be cleaned and not heeding these warnings may shorten the life or decrease the performance of your computer.

Here’s the main external parts of your computer you should clean on a regular basis and how to go about doing so. We recommend that you exercise caution when opening the case to your computer and not to just go in and clean willy-nilly. Some internal components are incredibly fragile and you could render your computer useless.

Keyboard Most people naturally rest one hand on the keyboard, this near constant contact means oil and dirt from your fingers will be transferred to the keys, causing a buildup of grime overtime. You may also find other nasties like crumbs get under the keys and can potentially hinder the operation of the keys.

The best way to clean a keyboard is by using compressed air, which can be found at any store that sells computers or computer parts. When cleaning, hold your keyboard upside down and blow the air into the spaces inbetween the keys. Sir Isaac Newton’s good friend gravity will take care of the rest.

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