While you’re still waiting on your refrigerator or your microwave to be as smart as your phone, the car in your garage is already ahead of the curve. If you own a vehicle made after 1996, you can connect to it with a simple device called an OBD-II adapter and find out your fuel efficiency, diagnose check engine lights, and gather a ton of other useful data. Most cars manufactured since the 80s have an on-board diagnostics (or OBD) computer inside. These computers allow mechanics and regulators to troubleshoot any computer-controlled parts of the car. From January 1st, 1996 onward, all cars sold within the US were required to have an OBD-II compatible port. This allows anyone with an adapter to read information from the car. You may have seen this when a technician checks your emissions. For the most part, OBD-II tools were only used by professionals to do things like figure out why you check engine light is on, or to make sure your car is meeting emission standards. However, … [Read more...] about How to Make Your Car Smarter with an OBD-II Adapter
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Google TV devices, like the Chromecast with Google TV , are great at surfacing content to watch, but not all of that content is family-friendly. Thankfully, you can set up a specific profile for your kids, complete with parental controls. You can have multiple profiles for everyone in your home on Google TV devices. The Kids profiles have a bunch of extra controls, including bedtimes, viewing limits, app monitoring, and more. Creating a Kids profile will add them as a member to your Google Family . It’s not the same as creating a Kids profile from scratch, as you won’t be assigning them a Gmail address. Let’s get started. RELATED: What's the Difference between Google TV and Android TV? On the Google TV home screen, select your profile icon in the top-right corner. From the menu, select your account. Now, choose “Add a Kid” to proceed. Next, you’ll be greeted with a friendly introduction screen. Select “Get Started.” If you previously added … [Read more...] about How to Add a Kids Profile to Google TV
The ECG app on the Apple Watch Series 4 and later lets you check your hear t for a condition called atrial fibrillation (AFib), where it beats irregularly. It works like an electrocardiogram (an ECG) you’d find in a doctor’s office. Because of how medical devices are regulated worldwide, the ECG app isn’t available everywhere . And where it is available, updates between versions can take varying amounts of time, depending on where you are. That’s why there are two versions of the ECG app—version 1 and version 2. Let’s look at the difference between them, and how to check which version you have. Note: The ECG app cannot detect heart attacks. If you experience any of the symptoms of one , contact your doctor. What’s the Difference Between Version 1 and Version 2? Version 1 and version 2 of the ECG app are similar, although there are a few differences: Version 2 can check for AFib when your heart rate is between 50 and 150 bpm. Version 1 can only check for … [Read more...] about How to Check Which Apple Watch ECG App Version You Have
The power supply (PSU) is a critical part of any PC. It powers all the components in your PC, and a bad or faulty one can bring everything down. Here’s what to look for in a power supply while putting together a PC. A PSU Is a Critical Piece of PC Infrastructure When we turn on a light, open a faucet, or walk down a nicely paved street, we don’t often think about the wondrous infrastructure making all that possible. But if somebody hadn’t taken the time to think about it, things wouldn’t be so wondrous. It’s the same when building a PC. We get obsessed with how many cores a CPU has or the number of compute units in a GPU . But rarely do we think twice about the power supply unit (PSU,) which provides power to everything else in your PC. You don’t need to think about your power supply too much, of course. But, if you don’t consider the PSU at all, there’s a good chance you’ll be thinking about it a lot once it starts causing problems. If your computer doesn’t get … [Read more...] about How Important Is the Power Supply (PSU) When Building a PC?
High-quality sound on PCs from drop-in sound cards and external DACs is a weird subject. It’s not as necessary as it once was. In fact, nobody even thinks about it much anymore. There’s no song or game that you won’t be able to listen to because of underpowered gear. Sound vs. Graphics Hardware Your computer’s built-in sound is pretty good for most tasks. Contrast that with gaming, where if you want to play the newest AAA games at high frame rates, you need a graphics card. A CPU’s integrated graphics processor simply isn’t up to the challenge. Nevertheless, some people still want better sound than a motherboard can offer. When that’s the case, it comes down to two primary choices: a sound card or an external DAC (digital-to-analog converter). A quality listening experience needs a minimum of electrical interference, which is a problem because a PC motherboard is a hotbed of electrical activity. That’s why onboard motherboard audio has shielding to protect itself as best … [Read more...] about What Is an External DAC, and Do You Need One for a PC?
So, you’re thinking about buying an Xbox. Do you want a Series X or S? Is your existing TV good enough, or do you need to upgrade? And will you have to stand the console up like some sort of monolith? Let’s answer the most pressing Xbox Series X and S questions. What’s the Difference Between Series X and S? The Xbox Series X costs $499, while the Series S retails for $299. Beyond price, the main difference between the two consoles is graphical power. They have similar CPUs, but the GPU on the Series S has about one-third of the raw power the Series X has. The Series X sets a target of 4K resolution at 60 frames per second (fps), while the Series S settles for a more modest 1440p, also at 60 fps. On paper, this should be the only difference. However, in practice, we’ve seen games like Assassin’s Creed Valhalla also cut back on features like ray tracing in the Series S version. The Series X has a 1TB SSD, while the Series S only comes with 512GB. The Series S is an … [Read more...] about Everything You Need to Know Before Buying an Xbox Series X|S