Do-it-yourself home security options seem to be growing more numerous by the day, and we've tested a lot of them. None of them have left us quite as impressed as SimpliSafe. With its wide variety of easy-to-install sensors, SimpliSafe protects your home in a way that's comprehensive and yet also remarkably user-friendly. The system is totally wireless and designed to keep running even if the power gets cut, and unlike most other DIY security kits, SimpliSafe features both live monitoring and a cellular backup. If something's amiss at home, you can count on your system to keep … Read more
Some celebrate Hanukkah with age-old traditions, and others celebrate with Lego and "Star Trek."
Some of the more unique dreidels out there include spinning tributes to "Star Wars," and "Doctor Who." But as long as you have the letters in the right place, anything is possible.
"Building a dreidel builds other stuff, too, like enthusiasm for the holiday and a deeper appreciation of those four important letters and what they stand for," says J Create Magazine. "The letters on a homemade dreidel need to be arranged in the correct order going right to left. Nun, gimmel, hey, shin are the abbreviation (an initialism, actually, if you want to get all nerdy) of 'nes gadol hayah shom: a great miracle happened there.' So, a shin will never be adjacent to to a gimmel, for example." … Read more
Can computers, and even coding, be as simple and fun as Lego?
Yes, says the London-based group behind Kano, a $99 DIY computer that's designed to provide a sense of play and exploration for what can sometimes seem like just a black box.
Since its debut on Kickstarter earlier this week, the concept has raised more than $460,000, far beyond its funding goal of $100,000. What's so exciting? … Read more
Having all these small and expensive parts sitting in front of you may look like a daunting task, but in reality the setup process, while long, is relatively simple. Having tools like a box cutter, scissors, zip ties, and a screwdriver by your side will only make the process that much quicker.
The most important task, and I cannot stress this enough, is to ground yourself. This can be done by touching … Read more
This is the second part of CNET's guide to building your own computer. Make sure you read part one before proceeding.
Now that you have decided to build your own computer, you must have a basic understanding of what each component does. You didn't really think we would just jump right into building it, did you? These are the components that are found inside today's desktop computers:
StorageThe operating system and all your files are stored on your computer's internal storage. There are two different kinds of storage options available: hard disk or solid-state. The … Read more
We may be entering into a post-PC world, but that doesn't mean the desktop computer is dead. Smartphones and tablets can be great for basic gaming, checking your email, and keeping in touch with friends and family, however you can still get more functionality out of a traditional PC.
Despite the push towards touch screens in recent years, nothing beats having a mouse and keyboard. Typing is quicker, navigating the interface is seamless, and the user experience is far more enjoyable, at least in my opinion.
Laptops are in a weird transitional phase, with companies now beginning to push … Read more
For the past five years I have been patiently waiting for the day when my son is mature enough to experience "Star Wars." Well, to be completely honest, I probably started the countdown when he was still in the womb.
The timing is critical. Too soon, and Darth Vader will inspire night terrors for years to come. Too late, and one of his blabbermouth friends at school will spill the beans on Luke's paternity test.
So we're working up to it, and with any luck someday soon his tiny brain will be imprinted with the opening … Read more
If there's any doubt as to whether people are eager for new home security alternatives, just take a look at Canary, a $199 smart home security device that blew up on Indiegogo this summer, crowdfunding its way to almost $2 million worth of contributions and preorders in a little over a month (its initial goal was $100,000).
Unlike other DIY security systems that we've seen, like the iSmartAlarm and its variety of external sensors, the Canary is a singular, all-in-one device. Housed within the curved, sleek-looking body (available in white, silver, or matte black -- but oddly … Read more
Until those smart, tidy Roombas learn to clean themselves, it's up to us humans to keep them running at peak performance.
Even after a few short cleaning cycles, debris like dust, dirt, hair, and fur can begin to take a toll on your Roomba. For starters, the vacuum works less efficiently, and too much buildup can also put harmful strain on the unit's battery.
After each cleaning cycle... The most basic level of maintenance should be done after each cleaning cycle to clear out the grime that builds up the most.
Start by emptying the dust bin. But … Read more
Stop whatever you're doing and freeze. Well, keep reading this article, but as you do, evaluate your body. Does anything -- your neck, perhaps -- feel achy? How's your posture? And your wrists and fingers -- are they okay after all that typing and texting?
While working long hours at the computer, you've complained about (and subsequently ignored) the toll desk work takes on your body. But it's easy to brush off the daily aches and pains when the solution is so unclear.
If you're lucky, your company might offer its employees ergonomic consultations. But, … Read more