Lifehacker readers offer their best tips for troubleshooting remote controls, hearing better on the phone, and copying tags from multiple MP3s.
Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favourites. Got a tip of your own to share? Add it in the comments or send it using the contact tab on the right.
Give Better Remote Support with a Few Photos
Ingmar Wittaku shares a quick tip for helping out your remote-challenged friends and family:
I found a good way to help my parents (who are not at all into tech) with their HDTV and Blu-Ray player. I took photos of the remote controls and put those in my Dropbox. So wherever I am, if my parents call me desperately needing to know how to change a subtitle or something else, I can look at the photo and tell them which buttons to try.
It's much less stressful than asking them to try every damn button on the remote.
Photo by Clive Darra.
If You're Having Trouble Hearing on the Phone, Switch Ears
MsCassLopez discovers she's right-eared:
I have a Bluetooth earpiece I use while driving, cooking etc. Because of the way I wear my hair I put the earpiece in my left ear. I've been putting it in my right ear the last couple of days and I think there's a left brain right brain thing going on here. Hard to put my finger on it but I think my cognitive ability is improved wearing it in the right ear. I find it easier to understand and conduct a conversation if I'm doing another task with the thing in the right ear as opposed to the left ear. I wonder if anyone else has noticed they have a right and a wrong ear. I'm right-handed if that makes a difference.
Copy Multiple MP3 Tags at a Time
David finds a faster way to replace MP3s in his library:
I recently replaced a few old, low-quality albums in my music library with higher-quality versions. But, I didn't want to have to go through and redo all the tags for every album. I found that MP3Tag actually lets you copy and paste multiple tags at once — just select one album, press Ctrl+C, then select the new album, press Ctrl+V, and you're done! You've copied over multiple tags for multiple files in just a few seconds. It made things a lot faster when replacing all those old albums.
Put Your Computer to Sleep Faster with a Batch Script
Moon shares one of his many useful Windows scripts:
Normally I use hybrid sleep in all my power plans. That is, standby + hibernation. Usually, this is the best way to operate but I'm not too patient lately and want a faster sleep routine.
So in comes this batch file, I call it standby.bat:
powercfg -h off
It will temporarily flip hibernation off, sleep (and subsequent sleeps) will happen faster, as will waking up.
But when I decide I'm going to do something like take the notebook out on errands with me, running this in a Command Prompt will reinstate hybrid mode:
powercfg -h on
A reboot or logoff should do the same thing.
The script's real use is just me (a geek) wanting finer control, because it's there. Maybe someone else will have an even stronger case for using it.