JamesSicksix's Profile

Display Name: JamesSicksix
Member Since: 8/9/12

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HSPA+ is AT&T's pre-LTE 4G network, but is still technically a 3G technology (more like 3.5G). 10 times out of 10 if you see "4G" on an iPhone 4S, it's HSPA+ in action on that network.

Skip the Genius Bar: How To Fix These Top 3 Issues Yourself
9/30/12 06:37 PM

I moved to ceramic and stainless about a year ago and haven't looked back. My old "non-stick" cookware was donated and replaced with something a bit more durable and healthy.

Can I Fix the Scratched Teflon on My Pans? Good Questions
9/24/12 09:00 PM


If it works for you, I say rock on. I don't plan on updating my phone for the next 3 years or so (or until batteries are no longer made for it) and will probably steer clear of smartphones when I actually end up needing to replace my Galaxy Nexus. Battery life is clearly the biggest issue for me, not only that, I see smartphones as an unneeded distraction throughout much of the day.

To Upgrade or Not to Upgrade:
Is the iPhone 5 Worth It?

9/23/12 06:28 PM


Tasty, but tasteless as a "decoration".

Couples with Separate Bathrooms
9/10/12 06:32 PM

1. Tool Kit - http://www.ifixit.com/Tools/Pro-Tech-Toolkit/IF145-072-1 --This kit has just about everything from tearing down your desktop PCs and Macs to removing screens from your iDevices. This is a good deal if you currently have ANY tools for such work.

2. Your OS of choice on CD/DVD as well as a bootable USB drive (I have a 16GB for each OS - Windows 7, OSX, and Ubuntu). The Mac Mini and all current Mac Books do not have optical drives, hell, my desktop PC was built without one (I didn't need it when I bought the parts).

3. A good flashlight, such as a Coast A20 or Surefire G2. Both are weather/water resistant and are small enough to roll into your kit.

4. If you can afford it, pick up rechargeable batteries for each of your devices, and pick up 4 more than the total devices you have, just in case you lose power or need to refresh them in the charger. AA, AAA, 9V, CR123, C, D cells all have a rechargeable offering, if you know where to look (hint: Amazon or your home improvement store).

5. I'm the opposite, ethernet everywhere! In my kit I keep 2 lengths (cat 6) with me: 6 feet and 24 feet, depending on what I'll be working on. Wifi is only used for my cellphone, laptop, and tablet (which I will be selling shortly). If you have a large home, wifi might be an easy way to go, but for me, wiring my apartment was dirt cheap and simple to do, I also paired a dual band wireless router for my Boxee Box and my portables.

6. Smart power strips, that's all I need to say.

7. Newegg has 64GB flash drives for $27.99 and up. Wouldn't hurt to get one for each member of the household.

8. Paper clips, lock pick kits, and small drivers in your kit can all do (generally) the same function. For resetting a router, a ball point pen does just fine. For a SIM card, I've never really had much issues (unless you are talking about an iDevice). If you do repairs for iDevices, I'd recommend a paperclip be included in your kit (or stash away the SIM tool that came with your iPhone/iPad), if not, don't worry as you should have plenty of other replacements in your kit.

9. Microsoft Desktop 400. I have this specifically for any issues/needs when working on systems to be repaired (like when someone brings you only the computer itself, no peripheral). It's only $18 online.

10. Battery backup is used for my NAS only. My desktops are on a surge protector and any documents I work on are done in Libre Office, which auto saves every minute or so, and has yet to fail me on recovering a document after a power outage.

11. Invest in a NAS. The "cloud" has me a little paranoid about my data security if I were to rely on their services (Google, Apple, Microsoft, Dropbox, etc). Not to mention that you can make your personal "cloud" as big as you want, mine is 12TB (along with a redundant 4TB hard drive for data integrity, for a total of 16TB, but only 12TB are directly usable). Synology makes a robust and easy to use system for setting up your backups, serving up media, and even acting as a torrent server (set and download), plus apps for browsing and using your NAS on the go for iOS and Android. Qnap is another good choice in NAS offerings, providing nearly the same functionality and support for mobile devices as well (and both have apps repositories for additional functionality). Qnap and Synology sell their NAS's without hard drives, so pick what you can afford, they offer 1 drive boxes for around $150 and offer bigger boxes (up to 24 drives) costing upwards of $10,000+.

12. Spare parts for your computers/devices. RAM, hard drives, a small monitor, and (sometimes) processors are laying around my tool drawer (in their boxes of course) for any issues I may run into down the road. These aren't for swapping into an aging system, these are to keep me up and running until I can perform a system wide upgrade (such as the Mac Mini I'm looking at buying, I'll keep a 4GB kit around for "issues" purposes, but it's not going to be a replacement for the 16GB I plan to toss in it). And depending on your phone, I'd buy an extra screen and glass (especially on the iPhone) on hand to keep me from having to buy a whole new phone. I am notorious for buying devices and keeping them running for much longer than necessary, simply because I hate throwing money away every two years for something new while my old stuff still functions and looks like it just came out of the box, but I also have to thank rom devs for keeping my phone (Galaxy Vibrant) relevant for this whole time (until the battery decided to commit suicide, taking the main board with it). I plan on keeping my Galaxy Nexus alive for as long as possible.

13. Keep learning new techniques and skills to work on your hardware more efficiently, safely, and cleanly. You don't want to dive into taking apart your iPhone because you thought that working on your lawn mower provided you with enough "experience" with taking things apart. Watch videos, read disassembly guides, and if you can, watch someone else who is skilled doing what it is you plan on doing.

*Note - If you still take your systems to Geek Squad, you deserve to throw away your money. They over charge and hardly do any actual work. Look up 'Agent Johnny Utah Best Buy' and see how they actually do their software repairs. As for hardware, you'll get shafted by higher priced components, ridiculous labor costs, and the 'Best Buy Tax'. I was a tech for them a few years back and can tell you that for what we were paid for, it was quite disproportionate for the work we actually did. I can go further into the joke that is Geek Squad if you want, but I have already eaten a lot of room in this thread.

Be Your Own Geek Squad: 10 Tools for Tech Emergencies
9/10/12 06:27 PM

@Walkabout I came here to post that as well.

Mold Chocolate in Any Shape Using a Common Baking Ingredient
8/31/12 06:52 PM

Invest in house centipedes.


Your roaches will be gone in about a week.

How Can I Get Rid of Cockroaches? Good Questions
8/31/12 06:50 PM


Flash back to Hitchcock' "Birds" in 3... 2... 1...

Accidental Photobombs: The Nine Eyes of Google Street View
8/31/12 06:44 PM