Apple’s App Store Adds a New Category …… Shopping!

Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 6.19.21 AMI’m actually surprised it took so long for Apple to make “shopping” its own category. Until now, any shopping app was buried within the Lifestyle group….. but no longer.

I’m pleased. There are actually several of these apps that I wanted to try (but I forgot) and now, with their own category, I see them and I’ll be downloading a few before the day is over. (And of course, if I find something share-able, I’ll post it, here.)



When I look at myself as an ordinary-person example, I would have to say that on-line shopping has greatly increased over the last decade. Last year, when the holiday season was over, I surprised myself when I realized that a major portion of my shopping was on-line. A quick google search this morning showed me that the e-commerce continues to gain traction year after year, all over the world.

On-line retailers continue to make the deliveries quicker and the returns easier. Someday it’s likely that this trend of on-line shopping will level off, but for now, it continues to grow. Many of these retailers offer special perks, such as free one-day shipping, percentages off your purchase and/or free merchandise.

I use Amazon a lot, but there are many other sites that I enjoy using, as well. I’ll share a few over the next several weeks. How about you? Do you have any favorites? I’d love to know. :)

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Reminder: Occasionally Close your Apps …. Completely!

Screen Shot 2015-10-20 at 7.07.32 AMYou’d think that since I write this “tech” blog for us everyday folks that I would be a do-er of the things that I recommend.

You’d think that.

But I don’t. :shock:

A great example happened this weekend, and when I was told to do this in a chat with tech support (for another device) …… I felt more than a little foolish.

Although this didn’t solve my problem, it was an action that I should have done before I contacted tech support. Actually I should do this regularly. As I have suggested that you do. But…. I forgot.


So here’s OUR reminder:

Occasionally CLOSE all your apps on your iPhone. If you used them…. they are still running in the background. You need to shut them down.

To force-close your apps, double-click the home button.

The screen that appears after your double-click will show you your open apps. Move to the left and right to see all the open apps.


To close each app, put your finger on its screenshot and flip it up. Whoosh! Gone.

Keep flipping. If you haven’t done this in a while (like me) you’ll probably have a bunch of open apps.

Doing this regularly will keep your iPhone running smoothly. (and prevent embarrassment when talking with a young tech-support helper) :roll:

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Are Your Passwords on this List?

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Every year, Splashdata publishes a list of the “worst passwords,” and this year’s list was announced a few days ago.

The number ONE worst password? “123456”

The word “password” has topped the chart for a while, but was unseated last year by “123456.” The very-bad-choice-of-a-password……. “password” …… remains at number 2 for this list.

I assume no one reading this blog is using either of these two passwords (am I right?)
are you guilty of using any of the others on this list?

Take a look…. and give a thought to your own password safety. A safe password should have a mix of numbers, letters, and symbols. It should not contain personal information. You should have unique passwords for different accounts. And, you should change your password often.

Worst Passwords 2014

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How to Change the Number of Preview Lines in your Email on your iPhone or iPad

Over the last several years, “throwback Thursday” has become quite popular. Although it is really supposed to be about nostalgia (like old photos), I thought I’d stretch the point, and occasionally post an old (but updated!) “how to” on Thursdays, for the benefit of the many new-device-users who have joined our blog. (or to refresh the memories for those of us who forget!)

Screen Shot 2014-07-09 at 8.10.11 PMWhen you bought your iPhone and/or iPad, the preview setting for your email was pre-set at 2. This means that before you open your individual emails on either device, you see not only the heading of the mail, but also the first two lines of text.

Consider your needs…. perhaps you want more privacy for your email? Then you can set it so that no lines preview at all. (As an added bonus, by setting your preview lines to zero, this frees up space so that more emails show on a single screen at once.)

Or perhaps you get a lot of email from a variety of sources and want more visible lines. When you see more lines, you can decide with a glance if you want to open a particular email, or just delete it. Poof! No opening necessary.

You can set these preview lines anywhere from 0 to 5. Out-of-the-box is set at 2, so if you haven’t changed it, your device is currently set at 2.

Here is how to change the number of visible preview lines: (Directions are the same for both the iPhone and the iPad)

Go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars

Now select “Preview”

From Skitch-8

You will be shown a screen with the choices: None, 1 Line, 2 Lines, 3 Lines, 4 Lines, 5 Lines.

From Skitch-9

Select the number of lines you would like to see, and you’re done.

Return to your Mail, to see if you like your new choice. :)

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How to Save Web Images to your iPhone or iPad

Screen Shot 2014-04-23 at 9.13.26 PMOver the last several years, “throwback Thursday” has become quite popular.

Although it is really supposed to be about nostalgia (like old photos), I thought I’d stretch the point, and occasionally post an old “how to” on Thursdays, for the benefit of the many new-device-users who have joined our blog.

Perhaps you’re wandering around the internet on your iPhone or on your iPad and you see a photo you would like to keep. Maybe you’ve just stumbled on a photo of a sailboat that is on your dream list, or a picture of an awesome cake that inspires you to bake and decorate.

How to Save a Web Image to your iPhone or iPad:

If you see a picture that you would like to keep, just touch the picture and wait a moment. A menu will appear with the option to SAVE the image. Touch SAVE.

You’re done. Yep. That’s all there is.

The image is now in your camera roll. To find it, go to your Photos app. Choose camera roll, and take a look at the last picture. There is your cake (or boat :) )


From Skitch

Another great way to grab what you see is to take a screenshot. This means that you will actually take a picture of the whole screen. Just put one finger on the on/off button, and your other finger on the home button. Push them both at once. Hold for just a second and then let go. Click! A picture of the screen is now in your camera roll. Now go to the Photos app > camera roll. You’ll find your screenshot waiting for you as the last picture in the camera roll.

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How to Switch your Camera on your iPhone for a Selfie: (part of the) Very Beginner Series

Screen Shot 2014-02-03 at 8.36.40 AMOccasional posts will contain how-tos and/or hints for VERY new users of iPads, iPhones or Kindles. All new users welcome! Non-tech speak, not terribly detailed, just basic device-enhancing goodness. All part of this Very Beginner Series. Please share with any beginners (Mom? Dad? Grandma?) in your life.

Recently one of the readers of this blog asked me about this, and I realized that there are probably other new users who also are unaware of how to switch the perspective for your camera. After all, when you FIRST get a new device, everything is new to you, even the most basic. And THAT is the purpose of this VERY Beginner series….. :)

How to switch the perspective of your camera, so that you can take a picture of yourself (a selfie) :

Open your Camera app

Look to the TOP of the screen. You will see an icon that looks like the outline of a camera with two whirly arrows in it.

Tap that icon, and the camera will switch it’s direction, and take a picture of you. Just tap the same icon to switch it back.


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Weekend Distraction: Card Shark Collection

Screen Shot 2014-01-17 at 6.55.04 PM Sometimes the best distraction is a good old game of Solitaire, and so for this Weekend Distraction we go back to the basics: card games. Lately this app has been my #1 go-to for card playing goodness.

Card Shark works flawlessly, and looks very nice on the iPad.

You can change the look of the cards, and customize the background. Within the app they give you some nice options, but you can also use a photo of your own for the background (my choice).

I have a few other card games on my iPad, but Card Shark seems to be the one I use the most.

There is a free version (9 games), and a Deluxe version. I am using the Deluxe version, which delivers over 70 games.

Tap on any game for a menu that includes the rules. There are so many games in this app that most are completely new to me, and it is fun to give them a try in between playing the old standbys.

Screen Shot 2014-01-17 at 7.49.04 PMIncluded in the Deluxe version are: Klondike (Classic Solitaire), FreeCell, Cassino, Canfield, Basic Rummy, Gin Rummy, Rummy 500, Spider Solitaire, Cruel Solitaire, Beleaguered Castle, Spiderette, Bristol Solitaire, Hearts, Memory Match (Concentration), Speed Match, Calculation, Forty Thieves, Euchre (US), Deuces Wild and Jacks or Better Draw Poker, Aces Up, Spades (non-partnership variant), Limit Texas Hold ‘Em, Speed, Batsford Solitaire, Josephine, Red & Black, Sea Towers, Crazy Eights, Tripeaks, Golf, Eagle Wing, Pyramid, Old Maid, War, Go Fish, 13 Packs (aka Grandma’s Game), Royal Cotillion, Blackjack (21), Royal Parade, Thieves of Egypt, Scorpion, Pile On, Montana, Canfield, Clock Solitaire, Kings Corner, Russian Cell, Yukon, I Doubt It, Four Seasons, Crescent, Osmosis (aka Treasure Trove), Canasta, La Belle Lucie, Australian Solitaire, Egyptian Ratscrew, SheepsHead(new), Kings in the Corner, Eight Off

(Lately I’ve been playing FreeCell …. a lot. Did you know that almost ALL FreeCell games are solvable? This has made the game a real challenge for me. When I can’t solve a game, I restart it. Again and again. Trying to approach it differently each time …. and, yes! eventually I have solved each and every one. :) )

Card Shark Collection™ (Deluxe) for the iPhone and iPad in the iTunes store $2.99

Free version: Card Shark Solitaire

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