Each week, we pore through our favourite tips and tricks to find 10 great hacks surrounding any subject, from food and thumb drives to browsers and Wi-Fi. Here are our most popular Top 10s of 2010.
Photo remixed from an original by Matt Katzenberger
One of the biggest annoyances on the web today is blocked content—whether it's behind a paywall or blocked by your device manufacturer, ISP, or country limits, we rounded up some of the best ways to get past content blockers and access any service you want.
If there's one thing we love putting our geeky DIY efforts toward around here (besides technology, of course), it's food. If it's a product of your own hard work, it just tastes so much better. We've done some great kitchen repurposing tricks in the past, but if you're looking to go for the gusto these are some of our coolest in-depth food projects.
Despite what your friends may think, those little USB drives are good for a lot more than just transferring files between computers. It's amazing how something so small can do so much—encrypt data, fix broken machines run portable apps, or even run an entire operating system.
Sure, Google Maps is great for getting driving directions, but it can do oh so much more. Whether you're on vacation, looking for neat things to do, or just going for a bike ride, Google Maps has got you covered with everything you could want when on-the-go.
Windows 7 brought a lot of cool new features to the world's most popular operating system, but they weren't all easy to find. We went through and found our favourite Windows 7 tips, tricks and tweaks that turn a fresh Windows install into a customised powerhouse (without the need for extra software).
It took Android a little longer than iOS to ramp up a following, but about a year after its inception we rounded up some of the best apps available in the Android Market. We skipped over the really obvious choices—Facebook, Evernote, and so on—so Android fans could find some of the best tools that bring Android's strengths to light. Of course, be sure to check out our recent Lifehacker Pack for Android as well for more app recommendations.
We're pretty anti-clutter around these parts, and one of the best ways to prevent clutter (and thus save time by not having to clean it) is to figure out the smartest ways to store all the stuff in your life. Whether it's a DIY solution that gets your stuff off the floor, finding clever places to hide unsightly accessories, or just plain good organisation skills, we've got you covered.
The invention of wireless networking brought us many great things, but few people realise its use beyond connecting to the internet without plugging into a wall. With Wi-Fi, you can print, listen to music, watch movies, transfer files, and do tons of other things from the comfort of your couch—even if it's far away from your precious Ethernet jack. Add a smartphone to the mix and the possibilities are nearly endless.
We've done browser extension roundups many times before, but with Google Chrome overtaking Firefox among power users and browsers like Safari finally getting extension support, it seemed more appropriate than ever to find the ten must-have browser extensions out there.
Your hard drive is a pretty crucial piece of equipment to your computer and your workflow, and it should never hold you back. We rounded up some of our favourite upgrades, tweaks and clever uses for our internal hard drives.
After a few years, we all rack up a bunch of extra hard drives that no longer have a place inside our computer. External hard drives, however, can still have purpose after they've been extradited from your PC case. If you've got some external drives collecting dust, here's how to put them to good use.
After the Google Buzz fiasco of 2010, we realised there are a lot of great settings buried within Google Apps that deserve to be uncovered. Whether you just use Gmail or you're a fan of the whole Google suite, these settings should help you customise your experience to your liking.
Whether you like it or not, your subconscious is constantly playing tricks on you, worming its way into your everyday life without you even knowing. We looked through some of the biggest ways your brain is trying to sabotage your every move, and how to keep it under control.
Sure, we love Windows 7 and all its neat new features, but there are some apps on OS X that the Windows development community just can't hold a candle to. Part one of this dual top 10 revealed the apps we're most jealous of OS X for having all to itself.
In part two of our "wishes for other operating systems" top 10 chronicled our favourite Windows apps that are exclusive to Windows (but that we Mac users wish were on OS X).
We talk a lot about media centre software here at Lifehacker, and while programs like XBMC get a lot of voice, we try not to forget the great, built-in Windows Media Center software. These great plug-ins, helper apps, and tweaks take Windows Media Center to the next level of awesome.
Between Facebook, Firesheep, and the continuing BitTorrent saga, privacy was on a lot of our minds this year. If you're looking to keep your computing protected from prying eyes, we've got the tweaks and setups to keep your information safe.
And there you have it—our favourite Top 10 features from the past year. Have a favourite that was less popular and didn't make the cut? Share it with us in the comments. And, if you're looking for even more great top 10s, check out the most popular lists from 2009 and 2008.