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Consumer Electronics

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Understanding Active and Passive Speakers

All speakers, regardless of the number of drivers, pole type, enclosure type, or other characteristics, fall into one of two categories: active or passive. How they're classified depends on their relationship [more…]

Setting Up ActiveSync Options for Your Pocket PC

When ActiveSync is first installed, it's set up to synchronize a lot of different types of items. You'll probably find that a number of these are things you don't really want to have synchronized, if for [more…]

Fixing Flubs and Faux Pas in GarageBand

GarageBand lets you disguise and fix mistakes in tracks in a number of different ways. The next time you lay down a track that's not quite perfect, don't delete the track until you've tried some of or [more…]

Examining the Elements of a Basic RFID System

Learning the fundamentals of RFID can be overwhelming. By understanding the basics of how data travels in waves and then through a network in an RFID system, however, you gain a solid foundation for greater [more…]

Building a Circuit Dead-Bug Style

With dead-bug style circuitbuilding, the integrated circuits (ICs) are all mounted upside down on the printed circuit (PC) board with most of their legs sticking up in the air! They look like a lot of [more…]

Seven Circuitbuilding Secrets

Below are seven bits of wisdom aren't about specific circuitbuilding techniques, but generally apply to everything. They can help make and keep circuitbuilding an enjoyable activity that will continue [more…]

Setting Up Your Palm Device's Internet Connection

Before you do anything on the Internet, you have to get connected. You need an ISP, or Internet service provider. An ISP is a company (such as Netcom or CompuServe) that gives you a phone number to dial [more…]

The Nuts and Bolts of Over-the-Road Wi-Fi

To put it very simply, Wi-Fi uses a two-way radio signal instead of wires to complete the connection between your computer and the wired connection to the Internet. Also, instead of using slow dialup, [more…]

Selecting a Nonprogrammable Robot Kit

Why not just build your own robot buddy out of scrap parts lying around the garage? Building a robot from scratch is not the best place to start. To transform common household items into useful components [more…]

Setting Up Your Pocket PC E-Mail Account

You'll probably want to set up your Pocket PC to use the same email account as your desktop PC so that you can more easily share email between the two. [more…]

PC Recording Studios: Configuring Audio Application Hardware Settings


Windows XP Digital Music: Controlling the Sound

You can play sound from several different sources in Windows XP. Sound can come from files stored on your hard drive or external media, like CDs or DVDs. Flash memory or external drives can also contain [more…]

Surrounding Yourself with Sound in Your Home Theater

Unless you plan on installing a 360-degree Cinema-in-the-Round screen in your home, just like you'd see at Disney World, video plays a rather confined [more…]

Why Go Wireless?

Wireless technology — from home phones to cellphones to computers — has been developed in response to the unmet needs and desires of those wishing to roam freely while staying connected. Wireless phone [more…]

Transitioning to Over-the-Air Digital Television Signals

According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the deadline for switching over to digital television broadcasts is June 12, 2009. Over 600 stations have already made the switch, so there's no [more…]

Saving Shows to DVD with Windows XP Media Center PC

One thing that Media Center is missing is a module that lets you create, or burn, your own DVDs. Why would you want to create your own DVDs? Well, here are a few reasons: [more…]

Terms to Know about Car Audio: Aspects of Sound Quality

Listening to audiophiles go on about the sound quality of their audio systems — from their woofers to their tweeters — can sound a lot like oenophiles going on and on about the qualities of wine. To understand [more…]

Placing Your Center, Left, and Right Speakers

An audio or home theater system generally includes the center channel speaker, the left and right front speakers, the surround channel speakers, and the subwoofer. [more…]

Troubleshooting TiVo Sound Problems

When TiVo's on track, it's a dream machine, automatically trimming away television's nightmares, leaving only the pleasant and enjoyable. Underneath its magic, however, TiVo is, quite simply, a computer [more…]

Putting Pen to Tablet PC

When you've discovered how to perform mouse actions on your Tablet PC with your pen, you're ready to explore how you use your pen to write in a Tablet PC. You can write directly in some applications, such [more…]

Plugging into a Whole-Home Network

For most folks, the installation of whole-home wiring isn't something that they want to do as a casual project. If you don't have a whole home wiring system in place and can't put one in, don't freak out [more…]

Adjusting the Security on Your iPAQ

One of the great things about an iPAQ is that it's small enough to fit into a pocket. Unfortunately, this also makes an iPAQ an attractive target for thieves or even people who simply can't resist playing [more…]

Operating Your Ham Radio in an Emergency

You hope it never happens, but what if worse comes to worst? All emergencies are different, of course, so a step-by-step procedure is not going to be very useful. Here are some solid principles to follow [more…]

Building Your Robot Safely

Compared to defusing bombs and walking tightropes, building robots is a safe endeavor. Still, there are some safety tips here that may come in handy.

In addition to the specific pointers included here, [more…]

Your HDTV: Projecting a Good Image

When most people think of HDTV, they think of big screens — specifically, projection TV systems. Projection TVs offer the most bang for the buck in the HDTV world [more…]


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