Category: DMM U - Part 3

Can My Overcharged Battery Be Fixed?

I’m sorry to tell you this, but in a word, no. It doesn’t mean your device is totally useless, however. I’ve written here before about the dangers of overcharging your thingie’s rechargeable battery, and more recently I’ve been getting questions from site visitors about what to do once that damage is done. Before we go any further, see this post for a simple rechargeable battery test you can do at home with no risk to yourself or your device. If the results show your rechargeable battery is damaged, read on. 1. If your thingie is still under warranty, return it to the place where you bought it for a replacement. If you’re going to replace it with the exact same thingie, back up your content first so you can re-load everything onto the new device. Click here for my post that explains how to do this for a Kindle Fire. For other types…

When And How To Stop Sharing A Family Account For Your Digital Content

Many of you may have grown kids starting off in college or permanently moving away from the family home, and you might be wondering if it’s the right time to break up your family digital content accounts (e.g., iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, etc.). The answer is: it depends on your specific situation. But after reading this post, you should have all the information you need to make an informed decision. A Single Family Household Can Share Content From an earlier DMM post, Can I Share Content From My Thingie?: Apple Thingies: Apple Content Is Controlled Through iTunes Every individual Apple thingie (iPad, iPhone, iPod, etc.) is tied, or registered, to a specific Apple iTunes customer account and content library (music, movies, podcasts, apps, etc.). A single iTunes account can have multiple Apple thingies registered to it, and everything in that iTunes library is available to all the thingies registered to that…

Do You Need To Worry About the FBI Ransomware / FBI MoneyPak Virus On Your Mobile Thingies?

I recently got a question about The FBI Ransomware Trojan, which is also known as the FBI MoneyPak virus. A commenter raised the question in the comments section of my earlier post, Does Your Kindle Fire Need Virus Protection? What’s “FBI Ransomware”? This specific Trojan / virus is an especially nasty one, as it essentially locks you out of your computer or mobile device until you pay whatever fee it’s asking in order to release the lock. It’s got “FBI” in the name because the extortion pop-up says the FBI has identified some kind of threat on your machine and will remove it in exchange for a fee, usually $100, to be paid by credit card. So these hackers get $100 immediately, plus the duped consumer’s credit card number. Making matters worse, making that payment won’t necessarily unlock your computer or device. Even if it does work, it’s only a matter of…

How To Delete Apps From The Cloud On A Kindle Fire

In a past DMM post, Kindle and Kindle Fire Owners: Where Your Content Lives and Deleting, Moving and Restoring Kindle / Kindle Fire Content, I explained how to delete apps and other content from your Fire vs. from the Cloud, and what the difference is between the two. Today I’d like to update that post with some new information: how to delete an app from Amazon’s Cloud right from your Fire**—all models, from first-generation non-HD to the latest HDX line—, without logging on to the Amazon site. **UPDATE** 5/19/15: while this post reflects information that was provided by Amazon at the time the post was written, more recent tests have shown the method described here doesn’t work for first-gen Fires. For people who only own first-gen Fires, the only way to remove apps from the Cloud in on the Amazon site itself. First, I must remind you: anything you delete from the…

The Differences Between Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Cell Connectivity

Bluetooth speakers, 4G tablets and external hard drives with Wi-Fi, oh my! Here’s how these three types of connectivity technologies differ. Wi-Fi Wi-Fi is the type of connection you need to wirelessly connect various devices to a wireless network. It could be your home network, the network at your workplace, or the biggest global network of them all: the internet. Yes, the internet is a network. It seems obvious when you realize that a network is just a collection of technology devices that are all set up to communicate with one another. So where at home, you use a network to send a document to a printer that’s located far from your computer, on the internet, computers and servers send web pages, files and messages to other computers and servers that are located as far away as the other side of the world. So if you’re considering buying some device, and…

What’s The Difference Between SD And Micro SD Memory Cards?

I won’t bore you with all the technical details of what makes a micro SD card different from a standard SD card, because I’m pretty sure all you care about is whether or not a micro SD card will work with your various devices. The answer is, so long as your device can accept a standard SD card, yes, it can accept a micro SD card — provided you have a standard SD card adapter or USB plug-in adapter (as pictured in this post). You can buy micro-to-standard SD card adapters and USB plug-in adapters on their own, but plenty of micro SD cards come bundled with adapters, too. To use a micro SD card in a device that takes standard SD cards (most digital cameras, for example), you just slide the micro SD card into the adapter’s card slot, then insert the adapter into your device the same as…

How To Turn Off Amber Alerts On Your Cell Phone

Last week many Californians were jolted awake, or were at least startled, by a totally unfamiliar, high-pitched tone coming from their cell phones. Looking at their phones, they found they’d received an AMBER alert, per a new emergency broadcast notification system that went into effect January 1 of this year. Because they have no control over the timing of these messages (nor in some cases, the earsplitting ring tone that announces them), and because the messages themselves are somewhat cryptic and therefore somewhat useless, most recipients reacted with 1) irritation that they’d been subjected to an alert they never opted in to receive and 2) an immediate desire to disable this feature so they’d never receive another cell phone AMBER alert. Click here to learn more about the wireless AMBER alert system and the changes that went into effect 1/1/13. Yeah, But How Do I Turn It Off?! On an…

Closed Captions: What’s That All About?

As anyone who regularly reads my missives here at Digital Media Mom knows, I am in the process of switching to an all-digital movie library. I no longer buy new videos I want on disc, and I’m gradually replacing my existing discs with Amazon Instant Videos when I find those titles offered at a discount. Amazon is my digital video vendor of choice because I’m confident Amazon will outlive me, but I’m not so certain about any of the other folks who’re selling digital videos—like my satellite cable provider, VUDU, UltraViolet and so on. But that’s not what this post is about. This post is about those wonderful, useful, practical Closed Captions!

Universal Keyboard Shortcuts: Where’s The Undo In Gmail?

Keyboard shortcuts are handy little key press combos that allow you to quickly perform some action that would otherwise require a little more effort with the mouse. Most programs have them, but they can vary from program to program and power users are generally the only people who ever bother finding out what the shortcuts are for their preferred programs. Still, there are a few that are worth knowing because they can save time, effort and frustration. “Universal” Keyboard Shortcuts There are a few handy shortcuts that are usually the same in ALL programs that allow the user to create content that contains text and images (e.g., word processors, text editors, etc.). To use any keyboard shortcut, press and hold the first key, then press the second key while still holding the first one down.

Kindle Fire Antivirus: You Still Don’t Need It

Note: Kindle Fire HDX owners, please see this more recent post, which is specific to the HDX line – Kindle Fire HDX Antivirus: Do You Need It? Since a great many site visitors get here via an internet search having to do with virus protection for the Kindle Fire, I’m assuming that many people reading this are gravely concerned about the possibility of their Kindle Fire being targeted by malware. I wrote an entire post on this back in February of this year, Does Your Kindle Fire Need Virus Protection?, and what I said in that post still holds true to this day: The Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD do not need antivirus or malware protection because they are not “proliferation-friendly” devices, run a custom version of Android, and cannot multi-task, and therefore are not (yet) being targeted by hackers. Furthermore, Amazon thoroughly vets apps before allowing them to be listed…