The sun sets depressingly early during certain times of the year, and this can have a big effect on your mood. What if you could control when the sun rises and sets with a fake natural light window? We’ll show you how to tackle this DIY project. Why a DIY Natural Light Window? If you live in a location where there are extended periods of darkness, you know how important natural light can be. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is very common during these times of the year, and lack of sunlight is part of the cause. There are plenty of products designed to help with this problem . However, if you want window-sized light, you’ll probably have to spend several hundred dollars . We wanted to add some extra light to our dim basement office and decided to go the DIY route. We’ll show you how to make a faux window with natural light that changes to match the sun, all for less than $100. What You’ll Need Before we go any further, just a heads up that we’ll be using … [Read more...] about How to Build Your Own Artificial Natural Light Window
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First released in 1991, the Game Genie let players enter special codes that made video games easier or unlocked other functions. Nintendo didn’t like it, but many gamers loved it. Here’s what made it special. Genie in a Bottle Game Genie is the brand name for a series of video game enhancement devices developed by Codemasters and sold by Galoob in the U.S. The first Game Genie model worked with the 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System and launched in the summer of 1991 for about $50. Game Genie devices for the Super NES, Game Boy, Sega Genesis, and Game Gear followed. Like a genie of legend, the Game Genie made your wishes come true. To use one, you first plugged a game cartridge into the Game Genie unit and then plugged both devices into your console. Upon powering up, you saw a screen where you could enter a series of alphanumeric codes. These codes injected data between the game cartridge and the system , changing how the game worked and effectively reprogramming it on … [Read more...] about What Was the “Game Genie” Cheat Device, and How Did It Work?
Microsoft released Windows CE in November 1996 as a new version of Windows. Designed to run pocket-sized computers, CE brought the user-friendly Windows 95 interface to mobile computing for the first time. Its architecture also formed the basis of Microsoft’s later mobile computing and smartphone products. Here’s why it was needed. A Compact, Portable Version of Windows Windows CE was necessary because full desktop versions of Windows, then tied mostly to the Intel x86 CPU architecture, weren’t practical to run on the pocket-sized devices of the time. As a result, Windows CE represented an entirely different platform from its desktop OS cousins. It couldn’t run programs designed for Windows 95 or Windows NT. Windows CE’s design emphasized low power usage, compatibility with flash memory storage, and relatively low memory requirements. It also retained a user-friendly graphical user interface (GUI) similar to Windows 95 , complete with the Start menu, and even a built-in … [Read more...] about What Was Windows CE, and Why Did People Use It?
The IRS is now accepting tax returns for tax year 2020, and they’re due by April 15, 2021. Most U.S. residents can file their taxes for free thanks to the IRS Free File Program, but many people still don’t know this. Here’s how. Incomes Below $72,000: IRS Free File Program If your adjusted gross income for 2020 was $72,000 or less, you qualify for the IRS Free File Program. This program is a partnership between the IRS and tax software companies like Intuit and H&R Block. If you qualify, you can use certain tax programs for free, paying $0 for every feature the software offers. Once your federal and state taxes are complete, you can e-file them for free, too. Here’s something you need to know: The free versions available through IRS Free File are different from the normal free versions available on each program’s website! In other words, “ IRS Free File Program delivered by TurboTax ” and “ TurboTax Free Edition ” are different software packages. If you start … [Read more...] about How to File Your 2020 Taxes Online for Free in 2021
It’s there right in front of you every time you use GPS navigation: a triangle-shaped cursor representing your location on a GPS display, moving where you move. But did you know the cursor originates from Atari’s 1979 Asteroids arcade game? Here’s how it came to be. Modern in-Car Navigational Systems Began at Etak The triangle-shaped navigational cursor featured in many GPS units and in-car navigation systems originated with the Etak Navigator in 1985. The Navigator was the world’s first computerized in-car navigation system . The Navigator didn’t use GPS, but instead, used another clever method to keep track of your position on a display as you drove around in your car. Here’s a great video of the Navigator in action, in this case, re-branded as the “Travel Pilot” for the U.K. market. To make the Navigator’s display sharp and easily readable with the technology available at the time (and the low memory available due to cost reasons), the Etak team used a vector CRT … [Read more...] about Did You Know? The GPS Triangle Cursor Comes From Atari’s Asteroids
Do you find yourself turning on the screen on your Windows 10 PC too often? It’s possible to stop the screen from turning off altogether. You can select different preferences for when your PC is running on battery power and when it’s plugged into a power source, too. If you have a portable device like a laptop or tablet, you get to decide how the screen acts while on battery or plugged in. Desktops only have the plugged-in option. The screen timeout length can be anywhere from two minutes to five hours. First, click the Start Menu and select the gear icon to open the Settings. (You can also open the window by pressing Windows+i.) Next, select “System” from the Settings window. Select “Power & Sleep” from the sidebar. If you’re using a desktop, you’ll see one drop-down for “When Plugged In” under both “Screen” and “Sleep.” If you’re using a laptop or tablet, you’ll see a second drop-down for “On Battery Power.” For controlling when the screen turns off, select a … [Read more...] about How to Stop Windows 10 From Turning Off Your Screen