Readers offer their best tips for formatting text in Google Plus, organising cords with Pringles cans, and avoiding unwanted image uploads by tweaking file extensions.
About the Tips Box: Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons — maybe they're a bit too niche, maybe we couldn't find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn't fit it in — the tip didn't make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favourites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Email it to tips at lifehacker.com.au.
Format Text in Your Google+ Updates
Reader drilon notes:
you can format text in Google+ comments and posts with *text* for bold, -text- for strike through and _text_ for italic.
Wrap Your Loose Vacuum Cord Around a Pringles Can
Reader Kevin Greimel writes:
My dogs like to eat sticks in the living room, so a weekly vacuuming is always in order. I start off with the shop vac and follow up with a regular vacuum. My shop vac has no good place to wrap the cord, so I decided to wrap it around an empty pringles can, which stores wonderfully around the tube extension.
Hack File-Scanners with Custom Extensions
Reader Java-Princess writes:
I like to use desktop Picasa on Windows but I don't like the way it grabs every image on my computer; there are some photos I just don't want showing up there!
I experimented with changing the file extension on the jpgs that I didn't want Picasa to find. Select all your private stuff - maybe by using virtual folders, change the extension from .jpg to .xyz or whatever. Now click on one of the changed files and use the Windows File Association Dialog box to set Paint or your viewer of choice to open the file. Note: this doesn't work with every viewer; It doesn't work with either Photoshop or MS Office Picture Manager which I thought it would do, but it does work with Paint and a PS clone I have called PhotoImpact plus some other lesser-known viewers. Your results may vary but it does keep your stuff from being dragged into Picasa while leaving it accessible for you to view.
I posted because I think there may be more mileage in this which some creative individual might laterally-think her/himself into, not necessarily with image files.
Securely Erase a Hard Drive on Your Mac
Reader SeeYa32 writes:
Erasing a hard drive is simple; simply delete the partition. But some users, like myself, would rather have the comfort of security when erasing hard drives. Apple has made this process easier for the user. Simply head into Disk Utility (Applications>Utilities>Disk Utility), click on the partition that needs to be erased. Before hastily clicking "Erase..." as you are desperate to obliterate your property, take a few seconds (and a breather) and navigate into the Security Options by clicking on "Security Options..." right next to the erase button. You'll find that there are options in there that will make your "deleted" data more securely "deleted". Depending on how much you're sweating for this information to disappear, there are different options from "Zero Out" to "35-pass" (In my opinion the 7-pass is good enough).
For as long as I have had a Mac, I always booted into Windows to use a 3rd party utility to securely erase my hard drive. Not anymore!
Get Google+ Inside Thunderbird
Reader Dale Chao writes:
Install the Google Calendar Tab add-on in Thunderbird (much better than Provider used to be) and click on the email link in the top toolbar. Once you do, the Google+ link magically appears in the new tab. Click that and you get a Google+ tab in TB which is always open!