SoftMaker Suite . . Another Office Alternative

Thanks to Leo Martinez for sending a heads up email about the new version of SoftMaker Office Suite!! . . . a very capable and well supported alternative to MS-Office.  It comes with both paid and free (beta) versions.   The link below the graphic explains more.

Versions available for Mac, Windows, Linux/BSD and Android!

Softmaker article link (by Jack Germain)


System76 Adds HiDPI Line of Laptops . .

These are not your average “big-box” or low-end mass marketed devices.

Top flight components (samsung, kingston, crucial, intel, asus, etc.).

But what I like best is the customer support . . free software (OS) lifetime warranty  . . . and same day/next day turnaround.

Not exactly your HP or even Dell plans (and I do like Dell also).

Continue reading “System76 Adds HiDPI Line of Laptops . .”

USB v3 Hub (revised . . 7 Nov)


The other day, without much forethought, I was about to purchase a “generic” 4 port usb hub because I’m using more and more storage devices such as my SanDisk Extreme 500 Portable SSD 120GB . . . that I purchased in March.

Furthermore . . . .  last week, I installed “Solus OS” on the SanDisk, but I realized if I want to take full advantage of the rated speed (415 MB/s . . . yes, 415 MB/s), . . . it needed a usbv3 port! . . .  (which are in short supply  on my Acer laptop).  In fact, I have only 1 such port on that machine.

So,  I opted to get the above Sabrent v3 hub.  I’m a bit surprised that I hadn’t thought of this before.

Now, I’m absolutely looking forward to demo’ing both devices at one of our next meetings.   A full linux OS on a very small SSD with usbv3 is like having 2 PC’s.  The speed and functionality are  amazing.

Sabrent USB

Info on the SanDisk device available below . . . links direct to my prior post here at OmahaTechConnect . . .

SanDisk Extreme 500 . . Portable SSD


15 db improvement on my wifi!

Android tablets have became my primary leisure computing machines, so I’ve been free to migrate from the computer room to my basement mancave, where the TV is larger, and the remote control is MINE. But the wifi was weak/slow, and got worse when my current docsys 3.0 gateway replaced separate modem and router. I knew about wifi extenders, but feared they were difficult to install and sometimes not all that effective. But when I saw that Aldi had one for $19.99, I decided ‘what the heck’. I paid cash, opened the package carefully, and kept the receipt — to facilitate a refund, just in case. I am very pleased.

I downloaded an app to my tablet that made it 1-2-3 easy to wirelessly link the new extender/repeater to my gateway. It even generated an SSID for the additional wifi signal, by adding ‘_Extd’ to mySSID. I regularly use several Android apps, ‘Wifi Analyzer’ to show the signal strength of wifi signals my tablet detects, and ‘Speedtest’ to show the download and upload speeds of the wifi I’m connected to. They both confirm my subjective impressions.

When I connect directly to my router, er gateway, my tablet indicates a ‘Strong’ 26Mbps signal, Wifi Analyzer shows the signal strength is -65db, on channel 1, which is 2412 MHz, and Speedtest indicates about 10 Mbps d/l and 13 Mbps u/l speeds. When I connect instead to _Extd, the extender/repeater, my tablet indates a ‘Very Strong’, 72Mbps signal. More significantly, Wifi Analyzer shows my signal strength improves 15db to -50db, on channel 40, 5200 MHz, and Speedtest shows about 20 Mbps download and 15 Mbps upload.

So how much stronger is a 15db inpovement? 3db is double, 10db is ten times, and 20db is a hundred times stronger — so somewhere between 10x and 100x! It’s the best 20 bucks I’ve spent recently!

–Lucky Luby, aka Steve