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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review December 7, 2012 / 24 Kislev, 5773

Tech year's good, bad, and, well, confusing

By Mark Kellner



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Come back next week if you're looking for last-minute buying advice; today, your humble correspondent would like to recap some of the good and bad the soon-ending year has brought.

Some of the most good - and the most bad/confusing - came in the world of operating systems. The top "good" thing, in my opinion, is the continuing, successful, happy evolution of Apple Inc.'s Mac OS X, the latest version of which, "Mountain Lion," arrived on July 25. As I wrote shortly after launch, it's an incremental upgrade, with enough new features to justify the cost, but not enough to overwhelm most people.

By contrast, Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 8 remains puzzling, at least to me. It's good, but not perfect, and lots of reviewers and consumers have some serious gripes about it. The whole "tile" thing on the new start screen, a fortnight ago, will be grating to some. On the other hand, we don't have much in the way of an alternative - most new PCs are Win8 already, and good luck "downgrading" to Windows 7. How this pans out has yet to be determined in the marketplace.

Then, as noted last week, Google's Chrome operating system-cum-Web-browser, the "stuff" behind the much-sought-after Chromebooks, is an interesting proposition. Like Windows 8, its acceptance and sustainability are not yet known. But I am slowly learning not to sell Google short.

For my money, however, the most promising aspects of operating systems comes in the realm of mobile devices. Apple's iOS 6, for the iPhone/iPad family, and Google's Android OS, each offer great promise. I'm a big fan of iOS 6, because it offers more capability, more functionality and, in my experience, better battery life on the iPhone 5. There's also the security of having Apple pre-screen iOS applications before they land in Apple's "App Store." In an age of malware, bots, viruses and other malicious bits of code, I'd rather have someone looking out for me, even if it puts a crimp in the development process.

Amazon.com's Kindle Fire HD, with its own tweaked-out Android-based OS, remains my favorite mini-tablet. It's compact, with a high quality display, and the OS works and doesn't break. I imagine that 2013 will see even more tablet innovations ahead.

Applications, ironically, haven't done all that much for me this year. There are some good new ones - Adobe's latest releases of Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements will delight photographers and video-shooters of all stripes. But I haven't seen as much as I would like, though there are a couple of nice items you'll read about here in the coming weeks.

Then again, also as discussed last week, with so much application-like activity moving to the Internet, that might not be a bad thing, but rather another step in the changing nature of the tech industry.

On the peripheral front, perhaps the greatest news is that printers are getting smaller, more capable and less expensive, up front at least. There's still the old "razors-and-blades" bit of selling a printer at a low cost and then making money on ink or laser toner refills, but overall things are improving.

The display side of things continues to get better: more choices, better materials, higher pixel counts and so forth. Still, the all-around winner this year - and, sadly, suitable only for certain Mac models - is the Apple Thunderbolt display, quite possibly the most stunning consumer-level display of all time.

What's been the most confusing thing, tech-wise, of the year? The unevenness of broadband speed advances in the nation. It pains me that many users overseas - South Korea, France, elsewhere - can get faster Internet speeds at lower cost. So much could happen if we, as a society, did better on this: more innovation, less commuting and happier lives. Not that they're asking, but if the Obama Administration wants a great thing to push in the months ahead, national, high-speed, high-capacity fiber optic Internet for all would be a great start.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Mark Kellner has reported on technology for industry newspapers and magazines since 1983, and has been the computer columnist for The Washington Times since 1991.Comment by clicking here.

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© 2012, News World Communications, Inc. Reprinted with permission of The Washington Times. Visit the paper at http://www.washingtontimes.com

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