Friday, December 30, 2011

New Year, Fresh Start: Password Upgrade

This New Year, Fresh Start is all about password security. I just tried out LastPass to check the strength of my passwords, and to generate new super duper ones to keep thieves and miscreants from getting my stuff. Like they did when they hacked into Steam this summer. Or Gawker months before that…

LastPass places all your passwords for sites and apps into a vault that you access with one master password. It installs as an add-on to your browser, and includes a tool that analyzes your current passwords' strength. From there, you can use LastPass to generate new passwords, and it will fill them in automagically. The free version is for all computer operating systems, upgrade to the premium to have it on your mobile devices as well.

Note that you really don't want to forget your master password. Another note, if you use POP or IMAP in your email client for Gmail, or other online email products, you'll have to change your passwords in your client program as well. If you forget your new spiffy generated passwords, you can access the LastPass Vault and find them.

Unless you forget your master password.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Tree Hunt: Part 2 - The Chainsaw Massacre

We went to get the tree we picked out last month, after long consultation and hard-won consensus, and this was the first year that my son was allowed to be the main tree-cutting dude. We're a family of tool and gadget lovers, so of course cutting the tree meant we brought our own rechargeable battery-powered mini chainsaw. Hilarity, and lots of tree hacking mayhem, ensued.IMG 2280 Team Johnson on the job!IMG 2285 Getting the excess branches.IMG 2290 To the baling machine, with Mr. Veeder, the tree farmer.IMG 2300 Convenient extra services are available. I haven't taken advantage of the second one listed, but I hear it works really well.IMG 2306 Behold, the Miracle of Chrismakwanzukkah Tree!IMG 2317 Many thanks to Mr. Veeder for another great Christmas season memory!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Snowless So Far This Year

IMG 0853
DIY Snow Maker - Lifehacker: Things are still pretty un-snowy here, despite our proximity to the Catskills, Adirondacks and Berkshire mountains. I'll be very surprised if we get anything significant at our home before the end of the year, and the kids are getting antsy. If my daughter sees this option, I may find myself with a new project. We need more snow goons, like these beauties from a couple of years ago!
(Via Lifehacker.)