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Review: the Quilo Humidifier, Cooler & Tower Fan is a Personal Cooler That Works Great in Low Humidity

In Consumer Electronics, Gadgets, General, Hardware, Review, Sponsored, Technology by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

The summer heat is upon us. And our natural reaction is to reach for the A/C switch and crank up the cool air. The problem is, many times people tend to congregate in only a couple of rooms in the house and most air conditioners are designed to cool down the whole house, regardless of whether you are in a room or not. Of course, you could get a single room air conditioner, portable or wall mounted, but these devices aren’t exactly energy efficient. While they do work to cool down a room, they do consume considerably more power than a fan. There is a nice alternative though. And one that actually had three options built into a single device. The Quilo 3-in-1 Tower Fan also has a built-in evaporative air cooler as well as a humidifier. So why would you want a device like this? I’ll tell you! (*Disclosure below.)

Quilo Tower Fan Review - top control

Obviously, there is a time and a place for cranking up the air conditioning. But, if you are looking to cool down a bit and want something that does it a bit better than just a plain old fan, you may want to look at the Quilo 3-in-1. I would like to walk through the three types of tech at work here. And each of these really isn’t “new” or “revolutionary” in any way. The technology, or rather, science, has been around for a long time. But combining them all in this unique fashion is where the technology comes in to play.

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Got Buyer’s Block? 6 Unique Gifts For All Types of Grads & Dads

In Clothing, Family, General, Sponsored by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

Have you ever suffered from gift buyer’s block? It’s kind of similar to writer’s block where you simply can’t start writing. It’s especially bad when you are under a deadline. Well, there are a few deadlines looming for those guys in your life. (In fact, some may have already passed!) Think about those grads who after toiling for years trying to graduation have finally accomplished it! And what about good ol’ dad? He deserves a least one day of recognition (and…eh hem…spoiling) each year, right? But the hardest thing is finding that perfect gift, one that fits his likes or needs. And that’s where buyer’s block comes into play. Well, never fear! Thanks to the help of BabbleBoxx, I have six unique gifts that can help you break through that buyer’s block for Father’s Day, Grad Day, or Any day. And some of the items on this list have some discounts if you act now so read on! (*Disclosure below.)

BabbleBoxx Gifts for Grads & Dads - 6 unique gifts

Gifts are either good or bad. It all depends on how much thought, time, and effort you put into it. And if you are searching for gift ideas for Dad and Grads right now, I’m guessing you are a bit out of time. But don’t worry, I’m pretty sure one of these ideas will work.

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The “Ultimate” Grad & Dad Gift – Ultimate Ears WonderBoom Bluetooth Speaker Review

In Audio, Consumer Electronics, Gadgets, General, Hardware, Review, Technology by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

It’s that time of year again. Summer is right around the corner. School is wrapping up or, for those lucky kids, is already out. And Father’s Day…you can’t forget about those dads and father figures in your life, right? Well if you are scrambling to figure out a grad or dad gift, I’ve got a recommendation for you. Pick up an Ultimate Ears WonderBoom portable Bluetooth speaker from Verizon. Actually, you may want to pick up TWO of them…I’ll explain why shortly. (*Disclosure below.)

Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth speakers review - in the box

It’s always a dilemma, trying to figure out that perfect gift for a graduation kid or for a dad. And what really qualifies as a graduation? It could be from a specific grade, or from elementary, middle, high school, or college. Successfully completing a school year is an accomplishment. My youngest daughter is going to be a freshman in high school, and my middle daughter is “graduating” from being an underclass person to a junior. These are significant milestones to recognize.

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Why You Should Write Long-Form Content & Blog Articles

In Content Strategy, General, How To, Opinion by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

So, I’m not a huge fan of short-form content. Well, I have to clarify that a bit: short-form blog articles. While I know that there is a time and place for short-form content (think social media), articles that appear on blogs, in my opinion, are simply not doing a reader justice if they are just a few short paragraphs. Yes, I know that there are plenty of bloggers and writers who are masters of the short-form article. And I commend them for being able to pull it off. Unfortunately, I simply cannot.

I have been writing blog articles, professionally and personally, for well over a decade. Heck, HighTechDad.com has over 1000 articles. (Where I find time to do it, I’m not entirely sure but it has become a sort of addiction.) And as my writing evolved, I started to notice a tendency towards longer pieces. Let me qualify what I consider a long and short piece. For me (currently) any article over 700 words I consider to be “longer” and I tend to now write a minimum of 1000 words. If I were to write a “short” piece, it would be between 500-700 words. Anything below 500 words I feel is almost not worth writing (there are exceptions, of course).

And, as I said, there are some superhero bloggers out there that can pull off the short-form article and do it all of the time. But frequently, those same authors also post their short articles daily or several times a day. This I cannot do for one reason or another – time being one of them. But also, many of those authors are masters of the written word and able to pack immense amounts of meaning into minimal prose. They are concise and effective. (I, on the other hand, am verbose and…er…well, I hope equally effective.)

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Why Having a Quality Monitor Like the 4K BenQ EW3270U is Critical To Your Vision

In Consumer Electronics, Gadgets, General, Hardware, Review, Technology by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

Do your eyes feel tired at the end of the workday after staring at a monitor? Do you get headaches often when you stare at your screen? Does screen flickering make you nauseous? Well, there is a good chance that it is your monitor that is causing these problems. Things like blue light, flicker, refresh rates, having your monitor too bright or too dim, shadows, reflections, ambient lighting, or any combination of these items can actually be affecting your viewing comfort or lack thereof. By not thinking about these combinations, you will suffer from eye fatigue, headaches, lack of energy while working, or having your brain simply too stimulated to relax. So how do you create the proper environment and/or configure your monitor to be optimal for your eyes? Well, you can constantly tweak and fine-tune the settings on your monitor, or you can get one that actually does all of the configurations for you automatically. I will be going into greater details of some of these issues described above as well as reviewing the BenQ EW3270U, a 32” monitor that has all of this built-in! (*Disclosure below.)

BenQ EW3270U monitor review - red display

Warning: this is a bit of a long review. There are essentially two sections, one about eye care and safety and the other about the BenQ EW3270U itself. It’s a lot to digest but investing in a good monitor means that you have to understand the differences and things to look for. This article hopefully gets you part of the way there on your research and eventual purchase decision.

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How To Easily Transform Your Desk into a Sit/Stand Desk with FlexiSpot Standing Desk Converter – Review

In Consumer Electronics, Gadgets, General, Hardware, Review, Technology by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

You should have seen the evolution of my wife’s desk over the past couple of years. It has gone from being a bit cluttered to now being incredibly well organized and clean. (My desk is always a mess of papers and tech items I’m reviewing…I’m a lost cause.) But one thing that she has struggled with is somehow making her desk work both as a sitting as well as a standing desk. We all know the benefits of standing when you work (not all of the time but regularly alternating). I have been lucky at work to have a fully-motorized desk at my work. But at home, it was a different situation completely. But we now have a great solution. It’s called the ClassicRiser Standing Desk Converters M2. And it has transformed her work environment, literally. (*Disclosure below.)

FlexiSpot ClassicRiser Standing Desk Converter review - a desktop converter

My desk currently is a permanent standing desk (I use a tall foldable chair when I need to sit). But it’s not really a desk. It’s actually a baby changing table/drawer/hutch that has a section that pulls out where you would put a pad down to change your baby. As my kids are all teens now, I converted this piece of furniture into a standing desk. It was the perfect height and actually still looked pretty good. But, as I said, it’s permanently in “standing mode.” That’s fine. I only use it a few hours a week and I get the benefits of standing.

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Hive + OhmConnect = Home Automation, Energy Savings & Saving the Earth

In Consumer Electronics, Gadgets, General, Hardware, Sponsored, Technology by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

At first glance, talking about electronic gadgets to help save energy and save the Earth sounds a bit like an oxymoron. I mean, how can something that consumes power actually save power? Well, there are ways to look at this. Some things will always consume power but what varies is the amount of power they actually consume. In other cases, adding a new energy consumption device that controls and regulates larger power-hungry devices can actually reduce overall energy consumption. And then, of course, there are those devices you add that just consume energy, but in this article, I’m not going to discuss those. Every Earth Day, many people look to do something to help our only home, Planet Earth. And while some people chose very active ways to help, others may do the bare minimum or nothing at all. It depends on your values, your lifestyle, your resources, and your commitment. In the end, however, it is truly important to make the attempt to make a difference. And interestingly, this is what the smart home automation company, Hive, is doing with their partnership with OhmConnect, a California-based software energy management company that allows its subscribers to maximize energy usage in return for cash payment. These two companies are leveraging each other’s services to save the planet, one watt at a time. (*Disclosure below.)

LED bulbs

Last year, I decided that I would make the investment in LED light bulbs. I must have purchased 20-30 bulbs to replace all of the old, incandescent bulbs in light fixtures throughout my house. It was a bit of an expense, but when you realize how little energy they actually use coupled with how long they last, the long-term cost savings becomes immediately apparent. This goes to my first example in the previous paragraph. Yes, I will always have the need to turn on a light, but how much power the light bulb consumes can be changed in a downward way – saving energy in the process.

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