The Future of Virtual Reality

At one point not that long ago, the concept of virtual reality was just something that seemed cool, but not in the immediate future. Well time has passed and we have arrived where virtual reality is not only possible, but is becoming increasingly popular in the technological mainstream. Virtual reality, or VR, has been around for some time, but it has just recently reached the height of its popularity. Companies are releasing brand new and sophisticated forms of VR, such as The Oculus Rift, Sony’s Playstation VR, and Samsung VR Gear. In video games, movies, sports, or any kind of entertainment, people are searching for the most immersive and realistic experience they can find, and this is where virtual reality can step in.

We have reached the current peak of virtual reality technology, but the real questions are how much can it improve, and what impact will virtual reality ultimately have on our society.

To start with the first question, virtual reality certainly has room to improve. Yes, it is already an immersive experience like no other, but who’s to say it won’t get better? The current crop of virtual reality headsets is the best we have ever had, but you can say that about any developing technology.  There’s a reason we get the latest phones/laptops/TVs etc.

Currently it can be difficult to set up the virtual reality sets, especially when trying to eliminate any blurriness or disorientation. They still provide for an immersive experience, but it is not always as clear as it should be. Also, there are limitations to the amount of tasks you can do with a VR headset. The virtual reality aspect of video games tends to sell you on the fact that you are in the world itself, except they often lack the story or substance of regular video games.

Also, while video games have made a huge step in the world of VR, film has yet to catch up in terms of providing the general public with a readily available, high quality VR film experience. In other words, we still have a very, very long way to go before all of our gaming, movies, and sports are consumed through virtual reality – if that ever does happen.  All of these concerns are without mentioning the bottom line – price and availability. So yes, while we may be blown away by the VR headsets that are out now, they are really just the tip of the iceberg going forward.

The more pressing question is what impact it will have on society in the future. Most tend to think of VR as simply a way to make entertainment more exciting and realistic, but the use of VR is going to extend far beyond that. Already, VR has proved to have certain medical and psychological benefits.

People who suffer from anxiety and depression have been able to find relief using virtual reality, as it provides an outlet for those to work through their real-life issues in a controlled environment. It has also been proven to provide relief for those suffering from physical pain, maybe just because it is a strong and distracting experience. Another interesting benefit, some VR experiences allow the user to see what they would look like at the age of 65. Those people who were not happy with how their future looked were more likely to make positive changes to their lifestyle. The applications of VR are endless, so while the immediate future promises of better video games and movies, we really don’t know what some of the final products might end up being.

However, although virtual reality should be beneficial overall, there are still questions. Prolonged use of virtual reality could lead to people being susceptible to motion sickness and sight damage. Yet, the non-physical damages may be more severe. It remains to be seen if VR can cause any permanent psychological damage, but most concern tends to stem from the fact that people may get too engrossed in the experience and prefer virtual reality over their real lives.  There are plenty of books and movies about this (Ready Player One is coming out soon) and who knows how accurate those might be, but it is a concern.  Current video games can already damage a person’s ability to have strong, intimate relationships in real life. Virtual realities can be fun, but can be detrimental to a person’s growth.

Like most things, VR will bring its fair share of disadvantages. But as long as it is used properly, virtual reality should be one of the more exciting and innovative uses of technology that we have ever experienced.

net neutrality

Net Neutrality means that ordinary people get to use their internet access however they want.  Facebook, Reddit, Amazon, Netflix, whatever – nobody’s going to stop you or charge you extra on top of your subscriptions.

It seems like a pretty good thing, that essentially EVERYONE is in favor of right?  But who would be against a relatively free internet?  Somebody must be against net neutrality, or else we wouldn’t have a designated day (July 12th) to remind the world that the current way the internet works is GOOD, and that we shouldn’t roll back the Net Neutrality regulations that are currently in place.

Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are opponents of the free internet – the internet we have today – and I’m sure you didn’t need another reason to dislike them.  ISPs (Comcast, Verizon etc.) want to be able to control the content in their services as a way to charge customers more for specific, premium services (streaming, gaming, uploading etc.)

Essentially, some things that you use the internet for are more resource-intensive than others. Streaming content on Netflix or Hulu is harder than going through your email or browsing Facebook.  Streaming services are a perfect example of what ISPs hate, because it requires a lot of resources from them while Netflix just needs to keep updating their library to rake in their monthly subscriptions.

 

With that in mind, it makes sense that Comcast might want to charge you extra for streaming Hulu too often since it’s resource-intensive for them.  However, the customer should get to use their internet subscription however they want to.  If you’re paying for a certain internet speed, they can’t tell you that you can’t use that to binge-watch The Office.  That’s for the customer to decide, because you are literally paying for that right.

Essentially, these big companies want to roll back the current net neutrality agreement so that they can charge premiums for access to certain content.  Facebook, Reddit, Amazon, Netflix, Yahoo, etc… you might need to pay more to get what you want!  Right now you pay your internet bill, and your Netflix/Hulu subscription or your Amazon Prime, and that’s it.  But if we get rid of the regulations in place, you might get hit with a paywall before you can access some of your favorite websites.  Or they might just cap your download speed if you’re streaming something too long – which leads to buffering which leads to headaches.  But you’re paying for a high enough download speed that you shouldn’t have to buffer to watch Game of Thrones and they shouldn’t be allowed to throttle your download speed just because they don’t like what you’re using it for.

A customer is entitled to receive what they pay for.  You can’t tell somebody who is paying their bills that it’s suddenly not good enough.  The internet access that we have today gives us the freedom to use our internet access for whatever we want.  We don’t need to pay extra to the cable/internet companies because we’re going to a website they deem “premium”.

At the end of the day, the current regulations are what we need.  It’s what we currently have, but we need to make sure that it stays.  Once we cross that line, it’s hard to go back.

Please visit https://www.battleforthenet.com/ to make your voice heard, or to learn more about the current Net Neutrality rules in place.

speed up my computer

Speed Up & Clean Up Special

Through July 15th, we are offering our Speed Up & Clean Up special – which means replacing your HDD with an SSD.  If you either haven’t read the post comparing HDDs to SSDs or want to refresh your memory on what an SSD Upgrade is, feel free to click here!

Abridged version: SSDs will make your computer faster.  Up to 10x faster in fact!  If you want a new computer without actually shelling out for a NEW computer – this is the way to go.

 

We will also literally clean out your computer

Desktops can get very dirty on the inside because there’s a lot of ventilation in and out, and people don’t often expose their computer’s innards to clean out the dust when it settles in.

Laptops are harder for dust/dirt to infiltrate – but some of it can still manage to get in through the keyboard/fan vents – and that will stay there until the end of time since the case is so compact.

Or until we clean it out.

Rates for the Speed Up & Clean Up Deal!

These are the rates for replacing your HDD with an SSD, and swapping out for a new storage device can be done with or without cloning your current device over – but it does come at an extra cost.

Would you like us to clone your device over exactly as-is, you’ll just have a newer and faster storage device?  Or would you prefer to start fresh with your computer – like it’s brand-new from the store?

120gb SSD  –  $174.95 or $224.95 with cloning.

240gb SSD  –  $224.95 or $274.95 with cloning.

480gb SSD   $374.95 or $424.95 with cloning.

960gb SSD  –  $424.95 or $474.95 with cloning.

If you are interested, please stop in your local store or give us a call!  These rates are discounted and will only be available through July 15th, so don’t dilly dally!

If you would like to learn about other ways we can potentially speed up your computer (if you don’t want to buy an SSD/already have one), the other common options to speed up your computer are Factory Reinstalls and RAM Upgrades!

digital currency

Digital Currency and Bitcoin

One of the newer trends in the technology world that has caught everyone’s eye is digital currency. Digital currency, or “the currency of the Internet”, is a new way for people to make transactions without having to go through a central authority such as a bank. Digital currency has become very popular for a number of reasons, and not having to go through a financial regulator seems to be the main reason that people prefer to use it. The industry of digital currency is continuing to grow, and the amount of trade that occurs using digital currency is at an all-time high.

Before going in-depth on how digital currency has become so popular, it is important to first understand exactly what digital currency is. As mentioned previously, digital currency allows for instantaneous transactions without any borders. In certain instances, it can still be centralized (such as PayPal or eMoney), but those services are still separate from the control of governments or banks.

            There are two main types of Digital Currency: Virtual Currency and Cryptocurrency

Virtual currency can be explained as a type of unregulated currency that is managed by the developer, and it is often specific to a certain group of people. Virtual currency is the form of digital currency that most often utilizes centralized platforms to control the exchanges. This means that the virtual currency that is being used is only accessible for that certain group. For example, currency that you have on PayPal is not able to be used on another platform such as eMoney. Virtual currencies can also include currency used in widespread online gaming services, such as World of Warcraft. Yes, even money used in RPGs is considered virtual currency. However, these services are categorized as “closed virtual currencies”, because they do not involve the exchange of tangible assets. As you can see, there are a number of limits to the use of virtual currency. If you are someone looking for a more flexible way of utilizing digital currency, then cryptocurrency may be more reasonable.

Cryptocurrency is similar to virtual currency, but it is not as limited. It uses cryptography to make sure transactions are secure, and it also prevents people from making additional units of the currency themselves. Unlike virtual currencies, which use centralized platforms to regulate trade, cryptocurrency is decentralized. This means that without having to be regulated by a bank or another type of central authority, cryptocurrency is much less susceptible to inflation and corruption. It allows the user to basically be their “own bank”, so you are able to have much more control. This also lowers the risk of having your assets seized by the government. Cryptocurrencies have become increasingly valuable, and this is because unlike centralized banking, most of  the platforms that use cryptocurrencies have put a cap on the amount of units that will be produced. This means that the units that are currently in circulation are continuing to gain value, because there will only be a finite amount of units produced.

Now, when it comes to digital currency, there is one platform that has risen above the rest, and that is Bitcoin. Bitcoin was the first ever form of cryptocurrency, and its popularity has continued to increase as digital currency is becoming more mainstream. Bitcoin was created as a way to make peer-to-peer transactions without an intermediary involved. The reason it is more popular than forms of virtual currency, is that it can be used to make transactions that are not limited to a closed-group environment.

Also, Bitcoin does not require you to submit your actual information, so people prefer to use if because of the privacy it provides. Bitcoin only asks you to have a Bitcoin address, and the owners of the addresses are never identified. Of course, like anything else in the technological world, Bitcoins do have disadvantages. The size of Bitcoins are finite, so that means it can be difficult to make large transactions, and often times transactions can be delayed for long periods of time. Also, Bitcoins tend to be more volatile compared to other forms of currency. In other words, the price of Bitcoins tend to fluctuate much more frequently. Currently, the price is near an all-time high, but prices have also dropped steeply in past years before rising again.

bitcoinEven with the disadvantages that come with it, Bitcoin has continued to surge in popularity. Just recently, the price of a Bitcoin shot to an all-time high of $2,200, which is double than what it was more than two months ago. For comparison, the price of a Bitcoin was just $224 at the start of 2015.With the uncertainty that is surrounding global currencies, the demand for alternative forms of currency, such as cryptocurrency, has continued to rise. Other forms of cryptocurrency that are competing with Bitcoin, such as Ethereum are also rising in popularity. The frequency of daily trades using digital currency is also at an all-time high. Just to show how much more frequent, in 2013 Bitcoin saw an average of 40,000 trades per day, and that number has now been raised to 330,000. Large corporations are also trying to become more mainstream by incorporating Bitcoin into their transaction services. By doing this, they will gain the attention of those who prefer to use digital currency as their means of making financial transactions.

 

The popularity of digital currencies, both virtual currencies and cryptocurrencies, is currently at the highest it has ever been. If you are someone looking into potentially using digital currencies, the advantages and disadvantages listed for both types should help you in making your decision. To recap, virtual currencies can be effective, but they are more limited because they are still often controlled by a centralized figure. Cryptocurrencies allow for more control and privacy, but they do have a downside as well. The fluctuation in the price of cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, has caused some people to become wary of them. At this point, the value of cryptocurrencies is very high, so it is better to capitalize on the industry while it is successful. The fluctuation in value can be off-putting, but as technology continues to create an increasingly paperless world, it also makes cryptocurrencies more intriguing as a potential investment.

New Year And New Deal

2016 was a great year for us. We at LaptopMD hope this year will be even better, and we are going to help you get your new year off to a great start as well!

So how about we start off 2017 with a special deal? When you bring your laptop or PC in for repair between January 14th – 21st, we will give you $17 off the price(excluding parts). Additionally, you will have some of the best, professionally trained and independently certified technicians in the city working on your device.

Bring your computer in to us. We will take a look at it and give you a free estimate. If you agree with our evaluation, we will begin the repair on your computer.

How To Take Good Care Of Your Laptop

Laptops are often expensive and nobody wants to go spend an arm and a leg to buy a new one. Why would you buy a new laptop every year or two when they can cost upwards of $1,000? Your best bet is to keep your current laptop working as long as possible, so here are some tips on how to do just that!

How To Take Good Care Of Your Laptop from LaptopMD

Keep liquids away from your laptop.
You may think that you won’t spill it, but accidents will inevitably happen. If you must have a drink near your laptop, at least be careful and use a cup with a cover on it!

No food near your laptop, either.

How To Take Good Care Of Your Laptop from LaptopMD

It may not seem as dangerous as liquid, but crumbs can easily get stuck under your keyboard and invite bugs to crawl in and ruin the circuitry.

Download antivirus software.

The internet is a dangerous place, and no matter how careful you are there is always going to be a risk of getting viruses. Minimize that risk with an up-to-date antivirus program.
Protect your monitor.

Your screen is one of the more important parts of your laptop, so treat it gently.
How To Take Good Care Of Your Laptop from LaptopMD
Make sure it isn’t hitting anything when it closes and never slam it shut. You’ll keep your screen scratch-free and save yourself the need to replace anything!
Let your laptop adjust to the temperature.

Don’t just bring it in from the cold of winter and start it immediately, let it adjust to room temperature before starting it. This will protect the disk drive and stop any condensation from forming inside of your laptop.
Don’t leave your laptop in your vehicle.

The inside of a car can either get very hot or very cold, neither of which will be good for your laptop.
How To Take Good Care Of Your Laptop from LaptopMD
As extra incentive, remember that unattended laptops often function as “please steal me!” signs to potential thieves.
Clean your laptop cleaned annually.

You can do this professionally or by yourself if you have the know-how.
How To Take Good Care Of Your Laptop from LaptopMD
This will keep dust from piling up inside and stopping the laptop from cooling itself, which would destroy the motherboard.
A helping hand.
Accidents will always happen, but do not despair if you damage your laptop. That is precisely what LaptopMD is for, and we are always happy to give a helping hand!

5 Signs Your Computer Got a Virus

Many viruses inflict the most harm before people even notice them. It’s vital to learn the signs of infection so you can take immediate action.  We want to warn you about 5 common signs of infection:

5 signs you got a virus

#1 Annoying pop-up advertisement
If pop-up advertisements appear when you aren’t browsing the Web, a virus is probably creating them. Some malware distributors seek to generate revenue by delivering third-party ads to computers without user permission.

5 signs you got a virus

Others try to sell products or services that supposedly remove the virus. Never respond to these advertisements; most Internet criminals won’t fully remove their malware if you pay them. They will try to extract more money out of you in the future. You could also end up with fake anti-virus software on your computer.

#2 Locked access
A message may inform you that police or other authorities have locked access to your PC. It might accuse you of viewing illegal content, breaking copyright laws or committing other crimes. Even if it seems authentic, don’t believe these statements. Government agencies don’t actually lock citizens’ computers and demand fine payments when they detect illegal activity.

5 signs you got a virus

The truth is that criminals use deceptive “ransomware” to demand cash from people who want to regain access to their files or applications. Find a way to remove the malware rather than rewarding such behavior.

#3 Subtle symptoms
Some viruses have fairly subtle symptoms. They might cause a PC to run somewhat slower by placing more demand on its Internet connection or processor. You may not even notice this if you have a fast computer with plenty of bandwidth. Nonetheless, the malware could be stealing your account numbers, passwords and confidential documents.

5 signs you got a virus

It may use your machine as a repository for pornographic images or instruct it to take part in scheduled attacks on other computers. A virus with few or no symptoms can still be quite harmful.

#4 An error message
Your computer could be infected if anti-virus or program management utilities become impossible to access. For instance, you might see an error message when you try to run a spyware scanner or activate firewall software.

5 signs you got a virus

Some malware also stops users from reaching theTask Manager in Windows. You may find that your computer does nothing when you press the control, alt and delete keys at the same time. This makes it more difficult to detect or interrupt an illicit program’s malicious activities.

#5 Strange emails
When acquaintances receive email messages that you never sent, a virus could be responsible. You might discover this when people reply to them or you receive notifications about “bounced” email. Be sure to check your outbox for unauthorized messages.

5 signs you got a virus

Malware can also commandeer social media accounts and use them to transmit viruses or post fraudulent ads. If a virus doesn’t directly infiltrate accounts, it may provide hackers with your login details and enable them to send messages without permission.

React fast
When you suspect that your computer contains malware, it’s important to take action quickly. Viruses intercept more private information and infect additional files when they remain in place for long periods of time.

5 signs you got a virus

For example, a malicious program could be recording every keystroke and sending the data to hackers. If you notice the signs of a virus or accidentally download a suspicious file, please visit the professionals.

Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop

At LaptopMD, it is very common to see consumers who have lost their data or entire machine at all when liquid was spilt on their computers or laptops.. Unfortunately it can happen to anyone.

Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop  from LaptopMD

Laptop spills are frightening because they can end up killing the unit if you do not tend to them immediately. The following are some quick steps that you can take to protect and revive a laptop spill. You should act quickly to enhance the chances of a complete unit recovery:

1. Power off the Device
The first thing you should do is turn the device off to prevent any short circuits. This should be done immediately after the spill.

Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop  from LaptopMD

2. Unplug Everything
Unplugging all the peripherals is the second step you should take, and you should do it quickly to improve chances of a revival.

3. Flip It Like Hotcakes
The next step is turning the unit over on its belly so that any liquid that is trapped in it can run out.

Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop  from LaptopMD

4. Absorb the Moisture
This step requires a heavy duty paper towel such as Brawny. You must try to absorb as much moisture as possible with the paper towel.
5. Perform an Inspection
Inspection is the next step. You should inspect the device and check for keyboard puddles and the like.

6. Conduct Further Cleaning
You should clean the lint and sticky items off the computer while You are working on it.

Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop  from LaptopMD
7. Allow the Unit to Dry
This part of the process involves a large amount of waiting and faith. You should wait at least 48 hours to give the unit time to dry.
Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop  from LaptopMD
  • Dry naturally. Prop the machine up, away from surfaces, so that air can circulate in and around the entire unit. Leave the machine to dry for 24 to 48 hours. While it is drying, place the laptop battery in uncooked rice.
  • Dry with light heat. Use moderately warm sources of heat. Let it dry for approximately 12 hours. A dehumidifier may improve drying time.
  • Never use a hair dryer, as this will cause static problems and contaminate your laptop. A hair dryer at a high setting could also melt some of the plastic components. In extreme cases the hair dryer will drive moisture deeper into the circuits and components and that moisture will oxidize and create capacities load connections under and inside of integrated circuits and connectors, eventually failing the laptop.

8. Put It Back Together
The last step that you can do alone is putting the unit back together. You can check to see if it works at that point.

9. Call us
We hope that you can get your precious laptop working by using the tips we mentioned above. However, do not fret if that does not happen for you.

Guideline If You Spill Liquid On A Laptop  from LaptopMD

We strongly recommend you don`t put this issue into a dark corner and let professionals take care about your devices.

The Doctor is in the House. On-Site Service.

We understand that you are busy and we value your time. That is why LaptopMD comes to you! Whether you are a business or an individual, when LaptopMD makes house calls, you can rest assured that you’re getting experience and integrity from certified technicians capable of performing any type of repair job. Whether you need help with software installation, computer network setup, printer support, or iPhone repair, our technicians have the training you need.

Who Can We Help?
Our dedicated technicians can service any small business or individual. We offer full support to small businesses on a regular basis. All business clients need computer support from time to time, but you don’t always need a full-time IT engineer. That’s where we come in. We can provide all of your business IT needs without the expense of a full-time staff member.
On site service. LaptopMD

We also provide full service computer and electronic troubleshooting for private clients in your home. Whether you work from home, or you need help with iTunes, email, or some other personal electronic need, we are here to help, in your home and usually within the same day.

About Our Services
For Business or Private Clients:

  • Set up your computer network
  • Solve software issues
  • Install programs
  • Provide computer training and other digital needs
  • Software customizations
  • Network and Printer set-up or connectivity issues
  • iPhone Repair
  • Minor Viruses, and more

On site service. LaptopMD

Most repairs can be done onsite, but some repairs may require additional attention or special parts. Our managers help alleviate these issues during the initial call and assessment to ensure your problem is diagnosed properly and we bring the proper tools with us. If work must be taken off your premises, or if special parts are needed, we will notify you immediately and prorate the onsite support fee.

What Makes Us the Trusted Physicians?
We have more than 15 years of experience, professional, certified engineers, and thousands of positive reviews on Yelp.

On site service. LaptopMD

When we come into your home or place of business, you can expect the same customer service you would receive in our office. We provide the trust and reliability our clients all depend on. We know and understand that you don’t want to invite just anyone into your home or office. That is why we are supported by thousands of positive reviews from customers just like you and the Better Business Bureau. Thousands of New Yorkers have trusted us with their IT needs, you can, too!

Why Should You Choose Our On-Site Services?
Convenience! You need assistance on your schedule, not the rest of New York’s. No lines, no waiting rooms, quick and easy – we will not waste your time.

On site service. LaptopMD

We work 6 Days a week. When you need us, our certified repair technicians are there in a flash. We will take care of you while you rest easy.

Locations We Serve
Manhattan, Brooklyn within 1-3 stops of Manhattan, and Queens.

Schedule your Appointment Now
Find out for yourself why LaptopMD is the best in New York for onsite computer support.We will be right there when you are ready for us. Call us today!

On site service. LaptopMD

 

LaptopMD Internship Initiative

Along with providing excellent device service, Arthur Zilberman and LaptopMD are dedicated to providing service to the community in whatever way we can. Robin Rodriguez of the Bronx recently worked with us as a LaptopMD Jr. Doctor, an internship initiative we launched.

After receiving a heartfelt e-mail from Yasmin Castro, a teacher at Bronx Compass High School, we decided to show Robin the ropes of the device repair/IT industry. He has a palpable love for technology, and we believe his time with us provided invaluable hands-on experience. In return, his enthusiasm and friendly nature always invigorated our offices.

Laptopmd internship letter

Our engineers are the best of the best, capable of internal device repair and unparalleled IT support. We’re willing to share our tricks of the trade with any youth in the city with an interest in technology. It’s our job to foster ability in the next generation.