Tuesday, 9 June 2015

How to double your Wi-Fi speed

How to double your W-Fi speed

Annoyed by a sluggish wireless connection? Darien Graham-Smith explains how to spot what’s causing the problems – and how to solve them

If your connection is crawling along, the first question to ask is whether it’s really the network that’s to blame. The true culprit could be a specific program or device clogging up your network – perhaps a backup job beaming terabytes of data to your NAS box, or an infected device that’s been subsumed into a botnet, and is now, without your knowledge, flooding out malicious datagrams to destinations all around the world.

Belkin WeMo Home Automation

Belkin WeMo Home Automation

It’s never been easier to automate your home with Belkin’s WeMo devices

Home automation used to be the domain of rich home owners willing to spend thousands of dollars to have their blinds automatically open at certain times of the day, or a plethora of lights controllable via a touch screen. They’d need to enlist the services of a home automation specialist who knows the ins and outs of esoteric protocols like X10 and C-Bus and can find the obscure products to interface with them. But in 2015, thanks to buzzwords like the Internet of Things and the prevalence of smartphones and tablets, what was once niche and expensive is now widespread and (relatively) cheap. Belkin’s WeMo range of home automation products are more accessible and easy to use devices currently on the market.

LG 34UC87 34” 21:9 Monitor

LG 34UC87

LG at the top of the computer monitor game with a curved 34” UWQHD beauty

On a desk, this monitor is beautifully imposing. With a 34” diagonal size and 21:9 display ratio, it’s like having two monitors glued into a single display – stunning. There aren’t as many pixels on this panel (3440x1440) as a 4K UHD panel (3840x2160), but it’s still a monstrous amount of screen real estate, so ensure your computer can cope. HDMI won’t handle it at 60Hz, you need a graphics card with DisplayPort output.

HP Spectre x360

Powered-up bling for the user who wants it all

At $2400 this is an expensive notebook PC, at least by today’s standards. But how quickly we forget those branded “laptop” displays in boutique stores back in, say, 2002 where gloriously plastic and chunky machines boasted of their 256MB RAM as halogen spotlights gleamed o† their $5500 price tags. Yes, the world has moved on, and today $2400 gets you a hell of a lot of computer.

You are sharing too much

You are sharing too much

Letting your data leak online could expose you to hack attacks - and even cost you your job. Nicole Kobie finds out how to stop oversharing

A tweet in the morning to share a link. A few photos on Facebook after a holiday. A snap on Instagram to show off a particularly tasty lunch. We broadcast the little details of our lives online without a second thought – but should we really be so cavalier?

Sharing information online can carry numerous risks. Mention the fact that it’s your 40th birthday and the whole world now knows your date of birth – and that could be enough to enable a hacker to impersonate you online. A holiday snap could reveal to burglars that you’re away from home, and a poorly worded status update could cost you your job.