November 22, 2017, 10:19:38 AM

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(Hint, it's much more than just digital money)

Up until a few months ago, like a lot of people I'd heard of 'Bitcoin' and 'cryptocurrency' but frankly while it seemed mildly interesting, I didn't feel any overwhelming urge to figure out how to get some or use it.  It sounded like a less secure, new fangled, roundabout way of paying for things 'electronically' and since so few places accept them for payment vs. the dollar...I didn't see the point. Why bother, right?

Wrong. Boy was I wrong. Because what I didn't understand...and most of you reading this probably don't either...is that many of these new 'cryptocurrencies' that we see in the news are not 'currencies' at all...they are actually a new technology utilizing a structure called the blockchain that are creating the next version of the internet, an internet 3.0 right now...and the vast majority of people have no idea this is going on.  How is that you ask?  Because many of these digital 'coins' are actually more like programming languages that let you build decentralized applications.  What the heck is that you ask?  Let me explain.

Let's say you want to buy a product off of Ebay, or Amazon like a pair of shoes.  Or perhaps you want to rent a room for a weekend through Airbnb, or get a car ride to the airport through Uber.  All of these businesses utilize a middleman that you have to pay a fee to for their service.  Think about it. You buy something from Ebay or Amazon and they take their little cut out of the seller's gross.  You book a room through airbnb or a car from uber and again...they take a little cut out of the seller's piece or charge a fee to the buyer...either way there's a middleman.

But what if you could get rid of the middle man?  What if there was some kind of company that did each of these things...sold goods..rented homes...drove you around....and there was no middle man?   What if transactions were peer to peer...you to the seller direct...without the middle man's fee?  Well that is exactly what the blockchain allows programmers to do.  Create decentralized applications, businesses, markets, etc.  It does this by utilizing the blockchain as a way of keeping everyone honest.  How?  Well, this video does a nice job of explaining it. 


But the important thing to realize is that what we are looking at here is basically the dawn of a brand new internet.  Just like in 1992-94 nobody could have predicted that Amazon or Uber or Facebook or Google could become the behemoths we see today.  Twenty years from now people are going to look back and say the same thing about decentralized, blockchain based companies that will be just as big...or bigger.

It's very likely we'll have decentralized search engines without advertising, we'll have decentralized selling with brand new 'amazons' or 'ebays'. We'll have decentralized banking without the bank taking fees and we'll have virtually every kind of business you can imagine from insurance to education to manufacturing to distribution and it will be done through decentralized applications and companies that basically 'live' on the internet and don't require a middle man taking a fee.

Once you understand this concept the next thing to understand is that the cryptocurrencies that we see today...and the new ones being introduced...are all representative of different kinds of decentralized  businesses and these digital 'coins' are being used to fund the development of these businesses. Now there are some like Bitcoin and Litecoin that are still just digital money.   But others like Ethereum, Golem, Stratis, EOS, Factom and others each represent a new type of decentralized company or platform that are part of this new internet 3.0.  And in order to use any of these companies or platforms you'll have to know how to use these new 'digital currencies'.

Some of these new kinds of decentralized companies are already in operation.  For instance http://steemit.com is a hybrid of reddit and facebook where you use Steem coins as a way of rewarding content.  Instead of Zuckerberg and staff at FB choosing what to show you...it's more democratic and the use of Steem coin rewards content makers.

So how do I begin getting into this world?  What's the first baby step I can take? Open a Coinbase account.   

Coinbase is the oldest and most reliable and safe of the online wallets to start buying your first digital 'coins' with.  You can buy a bit of Bitcoin or Ethereum or Litecoin...the three coins they currently support...and begin to learn how to use them.   For example, you can purchase some 'Steem' at Steemit.com by opening an account there and sending some Bitcoin to yourself from Coinbase to Steemit.  Then you'll convert that Bitcoin to Steem to use.

As you become more comfortable with these currencies you might want to open a trading account on a site like Poloniex...which just like a stockmarket trading site allows you to buy, sell or just watch all kinds of digital coins and see their values fluctuate just like a stock.

But frankly the very first step you should take, just so you can get started and start to explore is to open a Coinbase account.

Right now Coinbase has a promotion where they're offering $10 in free Bitcoin to you* if you open an account with just $100, which is exactly what I did to start.  Then you can start playing with it. 

Want to learn even more and become a cryptocurrency expert?  Start reading sites like Cointelegraph.com and Coindesk.com and TheMerkle.com to learn more about all these new currencies and what they do. 

Look, I know it seems intimidating at first.  But trust me, this is not just the future of money, it's the future of the internet being built right in front of our eyes.  This is an amazing opportunity.  Don't miss out like you did the last time.  Just think how many times you've told yourself 'if i had just invested in Facebook or Netflix or Amazon back in 199x...well this is your next chance...because the next version of the internet...the decentralized internet is happening right now, today.  Open your Coinbase account and take your first step into that world today.  You'll thank me later.





*I get a referral bonus but you get your $10 in free Bitcoin and it's the place I recommend to start on your journey to learn about this brand new internet 3.0
2
iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus Discussion / iPhone 8 vs. iPhone X decision
« Last post by Babyfacemagee on November 07, 2017, 03:30:13 AM »
So I'm interested in hearing what factors were involved in your deciding on buying the iPhone 8 or 8 Plus vs. the iPhone X.  Anyone planning to upgrade or are you satisfied with the 8 as it is.  How do you feel it compares with the 7?
3
iPhone X Discussion / iPhone X Display issues?
« Last post by Babyfacemagee on November 07, 2017, 03:28:39 AM »
So I've been reading that the display on the iPhone X 'might' eventually have a bit of a blue tint similar to what they've seen on the Google Pixel display.  Apparently while the Samsung display on the iPhone X is tuned a bit different it is still prone to a bit of a tint as the screen ages.  There's also the danger of a bit of 'burn in', which again is noticeable on the Pixel but so far I haven't seen any complaints on the iPhone X.  If anyone notices either issue please post here about it.
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With the official launch of the iPhone X still over a week away (November 3rd is the first day it'll be available) we thought we'd do a roundup of some of the better 'first look' videos making their way around the web.  The iPhone X introduces several cool and new features to the iPhone this year along with a pretty lofty $1000 price tag.  Some are wondering if there's enough new and better to warrant the additional premium above the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus or even an iPhone 7.   While we won't really know until we start seeing the first full reviews of consumer units next week these first look videos should at least give you a good idea of what to expect and give you some good grist to ponder over.  We've included some from our favorite tech bloggers including Technobuffalo, Erica Griffin and more including Apple's 'official' new ad above.  Check them out and let us know your thoughts in the comments below.






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Apple App Store And App Help, Discussions and Reviews / Re: Favorite iPhone App
« Last post by BryceM on October 11, 2017, 09:05:08 AM »
Arrowscan is my favorite iphone app because i can scan every thinks and easy to use.

Yeah that's a good one.
6

The first time I thought about getting a VPN or Virtual Private Network, was when I was on vacation in europe and I found to my dismay I couldn't access my Netflix account to watch the latest episodes of Breaking Bad.  It hadn't occurred to me until then that lots of countries actually block content from other countries.  A friend suggested I get a VPN which would allow me to spoof a US IP address no matter where I was so I could continue to watch my US Netflix shows and so I got one...a buggy, slow, expensive one...but it worked at least.

Fast forward to today, several years later where I've discovered a world of shows, movies, news and tons of websites that are located all over the world that I never had access to before I started using Windscribe.  I routinely watch live British news shows and television shows right from the comfort of my home in Los Angeles by using a British IP address so that I can access British tv and web unhindered.  I do the same with French and German sites as well as several countries in eastern europe and even Russia.  It's amazing what you start finding once the world is unlocked. 


There's other reasons to use a Virtual Private Network beyond just unlocking content however.  I personally don't like Google, Apple, Microsoft and frankly all sorts of other companies and advertisers knowing where i'm surfing on the web all the time.  I don't like the idea of being tracked by advertising bots and cookies that target advertising to me and keep records of every site I've been to.  With Windscribe you not only get to surf the whole world's web unfiltered but if you choose you also remain hidden from all those tracking bots and advertising cookies.  Windscribe is not only a VPN, it also has several additional features and a special browser plug-in that blocks most advertising and trackers so that you can surf the web privately.  Trust me...this is awesome...it gives you a sense of freedom to know that nobody is looking over your shoulder while surfing the web.

So why Windscribe you might ask?  Afterall there are a lot of VPN's out there.  Well frankly, I've tried about half a dozen of the leading VPNs and when I evaluate the entire experience, meaning performance, features, ease of use, reliability and price I have to give the prize to Windscribe.  Seriously, i'm not joking.  Several other VPNs I have used have had performance issues.  My connection will get hung up, or download speeds will be slow.   Sometimes I find that popular websites or forums are blocking other VPNs IP addresses.  I haven't had these problems with Windscribe.  Another problem I've had with some other services has to do with crashing or hanging my computer.  I've even gotten the blue screen of death using some other VPNs.  I've never, not even once had that happen with Windscribe.  It's rock solid and works every. single. time.   


Something else I like with Windscribe is that once you have an account, they have versions for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android...plus all the major browsers: Chrome, Firefox, Opera... all included so you can use it on your pc, phone tablet...wherever.  Just as importantly Windscribe is a GREAT deal.  I'm not just saying that.  You can sign up for a free plan to try it out and right off the bat it gives you 10GB. That's a LOT of free data for a FREE plan.  With most free plans you get maybe 1 GB.  The downside of the free plan is that it only let's you use a few different IP addresses so to really start surfing the world like I do you'll want to upgrade to the PRO Plan and then you get dozens and dozens of IP addresses in tons of countries.  But frankly, it's so cheap...less than $4/month with the 50% off promo code I'll give you below there is absolutely no reason not to get the Pro plan.  It is SO worth it.  Trust me, this is the single best investment you can make to improve your web surfing experience and frankly LEARNING experience. 

There is so much new content out there in other countries that you simply don't even realize exists until you start using Windscribe and start searching around with the country specific versions of Google, Bing, Yahoo and others.  I've linked the Windscribe site below so you can sign up for either the free or pro version.   My guess is that once you try it you're going to be hooked.  I can't believe I waited so long to start using a VPN.  Now I probably use it for over 50% of my web surfing.  I just love being anonymous and also being able to watch content and visit sites in other countries I just didn't know existed until I started using it. 

Make sure to check out all the free BBC, Sky TV and more once you connect using a British IP...I recently have been watching the original British versions of american shows...it's so cool to be able to do that....and also to see the live news broadcasts in other countries that are usually blocked to us in the U.S.  Practically every country has even more country specific programming and web content you'll discover as well.  I've arranged a special 50% off deal that you can access by clicking the blue link below and then using the promo code 'WS50OFF' when paying for the Pro version.  With the discount it's $45 for the entire year.  That's less than $4 a month!  Do it now and sign up so you don't forget...you can thank me later.



7

With Apple's introduction of their 2017 iPhone models, the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, it's time to take a trip over to Mobile Tech Review and see what Lisa Gade, one of the most experienced tech reviewers out there, thinks about Apple's new mainstream models.  So what's the verdict?  Well overall these are solid updates from the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, but the question lingers whether it's worth spending a bit more and getting the iPhone X.  Lisa addresses this towards the end and we're interested to hear your opinion as well.  Please let us know how you are going about deciding between the iPhone 8 models and iPhone X.  Are the bezel-less screen, fancy casing and additional features worth the extra Benjamins?

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It is a fact that Apple has always succeeded in meeting its users’ dynamic needs and demands by bringing the best in class updates and features with every new release of its OS. Similarly, the newly launched iOS 11 has also started appealing its users to upgrade their iPhones and iPads OS. Apple has brought prominent updates to its numerous features where improved Siri, Maps, HomeKit are some of the top listed and liked upgrades to the existing iOS. Apple has also added a new list of high-end games apps as well as dedicated utility features that have further increased its demand.

In addition to improving and enriching the overall user experience for the iOS end users, Apple has also increased its focus on the growing needs of app providers. iOS 11 has brought a whole new shape of the app store that has successfully managed to address a number of concerns by the iOS app providers. The majority of affordable and cheap iPhone app developers Virginia based experts have reported that the new app store is expected to be more efficient when it comes to ranking iOS apps. 
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iPhone News - Front Page Comments & Discussion / MKBHD Plays With The iPhone X!
« Last post by Babyfacemagee on September 16, 2017, 07:15:41 PM »

Apple introduced the iPhone X, their new flagship with all kinds of neat new features including one we're not so crazy about, the $1000 price tag.  But if you want the best you pay the price.  So what did MKBHD, everyone's hottest tech reviewer think of the new flagship from Apple?  Well, watch the video above to find out his first impressions.
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This looks like an amazing little speaker and cheap too.
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