FROM CASSETTE TO DIGITAL

If you Google “How to Turn a Casette Tape into MP3s,” (or click here), you’ll get a CNET article that walks you through every step. We found it after a reader asked, but we bet lot of people have old tapes they’d like to preserve and play on a computer, phone, tablet or digital player.

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ORGANIZING YOUR IPAD

If you’re like us, your iPad screen is so full of colorful icons for programs, it’s getting hard to find the ones you use regularly. Clean up by putting them in folders, and type a label for those folders.

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TIPS AND TRICKS

– If you find the daily load of email as overwhelming as we do, try this trick: Instead of deleting messages you don’t want, one by one, check the box that selects them all. Then go down the list and uncheck the ones you want to look at. Dump the rest.

— Pulling a snapshot from a movie DVD can be done with…

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MAKE YOUR OWN BOX OR GIFT BAG

Ideogram.nl/boxmaker has a neat free template maker for making gift bags, boxes, cones, envelopes, and other things out of card stock. Select any size or geometric shape and it will create a template that shows you how to cut out what you need and where to fold and glue it. (How about a dodecahedron? Twelve sides.) Paint it, color it or use fancy paper and you’ve got an unusual gift box.

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GOOGLE TIPS AND TRICKS

Quora.com is our favorite question and answer site. It recently had some great tips for using Google in little-known ways. Like these:

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LEGO BOOKS

You can do a lot with LEGO  blocks, but surely nothing more remarkable than what’s pictured in these two books from No Starch Press. Should keep the kids busy over the holidays. — “Beautiful Lego” ($30), by Mike Doyle, is all pictures of completed projects, and beautiful they are, everything from a haunted house that seems to be falling apart, to a fantastic city floating in space. — “More Amazing Vehicles ($20), by Kuipers and Zamboni. Using step-by-step photos and instructions, the authors show us how to build anything from a Formula One race car to a fork-lift truck.  

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DONATING AN OLD COMPUTER

We heard from a reader who is donating his computer to the Salvation Army but wants to remove his personal stuff first. He didn’t mean deleting in the usual way, because that can be recovered. Skilled recovery experts can even resurrect data from a computer that’s been reformatted.

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PRINT LIVES

Just when you thought print was dead, along comes a new magazine from the website AllRecipes.com. Instead of going from print to digital, it’s going from digital to print. Of course, the website will still exist, but this November you can get the magazine too. The new “AllRecipes” magazine will cost $12 for a two-year subscription. The initial subscriber base is expected to be 500,000, which is very big. (People are always asking “What’s cooking?”). Print is handy to have in the kitchen. It’s easier to drip tomato sauce on a printed page than on your iPad. Mashable.com reports that print advertising in the food category is up over 10 percent this year. Bon Appetit’s advertising revenue was up 42 […]

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LEARNING THROUGH PICTURES

InPics.net teaches with pictures. They have tutorials for Microsoft Office, web coding (PHP, MySQL, and so on), and OpenOffice.org.

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A NEW COMPUTER OFTEN PRESENTS CHALLENGES

Getting a new computer can be a hassle if you’ve got lots of programs left behind on your old one. You would think that using a drive image program to copy everything from the old drive to DVD or other storage medium would work just fine. Surprise! It works fine, all right, but only to restore your old computer back to a point when everything was working well. It won’t copy the programs of the old computer onto the new one. What about using one of those transfer programs? You know, the ones that advertise they can move everything from your old computer over to the new one. Well, they can move a lot of stuff over, but in our […]

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