Tech Term Tuesday: 4k

You’ve probably heard that Sony is broadcasting the World Cup in 4k, but what does that mean? 4k, according to the Tech Terms Computer Dictionary, is a display standard (for a TV or a computer monitor) that can support a horizontal resolution of about 4,000 pixels. The most common resolution for 4k-enabled televisions, often referred to as UHDTVs, is 3840 x 2160 pixels. For comparison, most high-definition televisions have a resolution of 1920 x 1080.

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Simply put, 4k televisions are twice as HD as HDTVs.

If you’re in the market for a UHDTV, you’re in luck! We just so happen to offer a number of UHDTVs on our very own Howard Store. Most of them are SmartTVs as well, and the Samsung models are compatible with the PixieTV app. Check out this image from Gizmodo‘s article about the app:

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Um, WOAH. That’s a live feed that breaks down what’s happening in the game as you’re watching, as well as scores from past games and what matches are coming up. Perfect for the sports enthusiast who doesn’t want to miss a second of the action!

Here’s a listing of all the UHDTVs that we offer. We hope you’ve learned a little something, and we hope to see you back here next Tech Term Tuesday!

 

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Throwback Thursday: Hedy Lamarr

If you’ve ever used Wi-Fi, bluetooth, or GPS, you can thank 1940s actress Hedy Lamarr! Image

The “most beautiful woman in the world” came up with the idea of “frequency-hopping” as a means of controlling torpedoes via radio in 1940 after working with avant-garde composer and inventor George Antheil. The team’s discoveries later became so vital to national safety that the government kept the details of their findings top secret.

For many years, Hedy Lamarr wasn’t recognized for her role in revolutionizing wireless communication, but in the early 90’s when cell phone technology was just taking off, a communications technologist came across her patent and convinced a communications company to give her an award. When contacted about the award she was to receive, she responded, “Well, it’s about time.”

Today, FHSS (frequency-hopping spread-spectrum) lets you make a phone call without worrying about your conversation overlapping with someone else’s, even if lots of other calls are happening around you. GPS systems, Bluetooth connections, and even baby monitors rely on FHSS to transmit information between two devices without interference. Without Hedy Lamarr, wireless communications probably wouldn’t be as quick and efficient as they are today!

(Photo via GizmodoNPR also featured this article about Hedy Lamarr and her scientific legacy. Both are great if you want to read more about this amazing woman!)

World Cup Tech

You probably know that this year’s FIFA World Cup kicked off Thursday, June 12 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. You might even have tuned in to the opening ceremony, or you might be planning on watching the US Men’s National Team take on Ghana today. What you might not realize is just how much the World Cup has changed since its first incarnation in 1930.

When we think of technology, we generally don’t think about sports, but the truth is that the two go hand in hand. This year, for the first time, World Cup officials will rely on goal-line technology that uses cameras mounted around the stadium to determine when goals are scored. You can find a good explanation of how it works on the Guardian’s website.

This handy infographic will take you through a brief history of soccer technology. (For example, did you know the World Cup was first televised in 1954?)

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(via Gizmodo)

Tech Term Tuesday: Cookie

Most of us use computers everyday, but we don’t realize how much goes in to making them work the way we need them to. Every Tuesday on this blog, as well as our Howard Technology Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest pages, we’ll be highlighting a technological term that will help you understand how your electronic devices work. Maybe you’ll learn something new along the way!

Today’s term: cookie 

cookie tech term

 

(Definition from Wikipedia. Image via BostInno.)

The Howard Store Guide to a Perfect Father’s Day

Dads come in all different shapes and sizes, with all kinds of different interests and talents. Father’s Day is just around the corner (June 15th), and if you’re still searching for that perfect gift to let your dad know just how special he is to you, look no further. Here are a few ideas for having a fun day with your Dad with a little help from the great gift ideas you can find on the Howard Store.

 

The Movie Marathon

Set the scene for a fun, relaxing Father’s Day with your movie-loving dad. If your dad is the type who likes to read the book before he sees the movie, surprise him with a Sungale eBook reader. Make him promise not to give away the ending, and then you can settle into the couch around his new 55″ LCD TV. This Actiontec Screen Beam Wireless Display Reciever lets Dad play video from his tablet, laptop, or smartphone on his television. A Samsung Smart TV will connect Dad directly to Netflix, as well as other web apps. If you just can’t stand to listen to one more episode of Game of Thrones, Dad’s Manhattan Fusion Wireless Headphones will let him enjoy the show without disturbing the rest of the family. For on-the-go dads, an ASUS VivoTag or Sungale Cyberus tablet lets him take his favorite movies with him wherever he goes.

 

The Family Cookout/Camp-out

Maybe your dad is more of the outdoorsy type. If his ideal Father’s Day involves fresh air andoutdoor collage revised food, a family cookout is a great idea. Let Dad show off his grilling prowess with a new Char Broil grill.  Relax in the backyard in Stansport Arm Chair outdoor furniture (comes in Dad sized or Dad+Mom sized), or take your Outdoor Edge Game Processor kit to the woods for some quality hunting time with Dad. When you hit the campground, take your Coleman Lumen light and Stansport Weather Band FM Radio with you so you’ll be prepared for anything. Finally, at the end of the day, Dad can enjoy the peace and quiet of the outdoors in comfort in an AeroBed Adventure Bed.  

 

The Stroll Down Memory Lane

Your dad probably has more embarrassing pictures of you than he can count. While you might still be mortified about the bad haircut you had when you were 5 or your gap-toothed school portraits from 2nd gpicture collage revisedrade, your dad thinks that stuff is adorable. Load your pictures on a USB flash drive and plug it into a digital photo frame (in black or brown) to let Dad relive the memories. This PIXIMA photo printer will let Dad print out all of those great pictures of you with food on your face in vivid color. Awwww. And when you’re ready to make more memories, Dad can use this Eye-fi Mobi Network Adapter to transmit his pictures directly from his digital camera to his smartphone.    

 

No matter what kind of day you spend with your dad, make sure you let him know how much you appreciate him. Give him a big Happy Father’s Day from all of us at Howard Industries!

Thank You Fans!

Thank You_WebsiteWe want to extend a HUGE Thank You from the entire Howard Family to our 10,000 fans for joining our Facebook community!  We could not have reached this incredible milestone without you.  To show our immense gratitude, we are giving away a FREE iPad mini along with some very special discounts on your favorite products.

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Celebrate with us by opting-in to win a FREE iPad mini here!
Be sure to follow us on Facebook for more updates, insights and giveaways!

A Simplified Explanation of “The Cloud”

By Kathy Green

“The Cloud”

Every day, millions of people all over the world spend time playing, shopping, chatting, e-mailing, searching and surfing the Web.  In fact, the Web, Internet, or “The Cloud,” as it is often called, has been described as the quintessential expression of modern globalization.  But in more definite terms, what is it?

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What is the cloud?

“The cloud” actually refers to the multitude of public and private, academic, business, and government infrastructures (servers and hardware) and IT services (software and applications) that are connected through an extensive array of networking technologies and accessible by computer.

Being able to access this great ‘cloud’ of servers/software/applications is like having the ultimate supercomputer at our fingertips-information and resources any time we need them.  It’s called “cloud computing”, and it has real advantages.  It gives us (people and businesses) access to an almost unlimited amount of storage and computing power that can be accessed from any place in the world that has Internet connectivity.  So, exactly where is it?

Where is the cloud?

This mammoth “cloud,” which supports the never-ending flow and processing of digital information, is housed on servers in blocks of office buildings and warehouses throughout the world, with the largest data centers in the US and Europe.  But beyond that, location is not really important.  To illustrate, let’s consider electricity.  We don’t have to understand precisely how it works or know where the particular grid that services our area is located in order to have electricity.  All we have to do is plug-in to an outlet, and it works!  It’s the same with this shared, super-computer in “the cloud.”  We don’t have to understand all the technical aspects or know where the servers are located in order to access it, all we need is a properly configured computer.

The key is access, which, aside from hardware and configuration, is governed by types of clouds-public, private, and hybrid.  Email is an example of a public cloud service.  When you access your email account, you are accessing secure servers that have been set up to host email services for your particular provider and made available to you-the public.  Conversely, private clouds are built exclusively for an individual enterprise, allowing access to only a select group of individuals (e.g. employees, customers, etc.).  Hybrid clouds, on the other hand, offer increased flexibility by combining elements of both public and private clouds.

How can you benefit from the cloud?

Different clouds (within “The Cloud”) do different things.  For instance, the Facebook “cloud” enables you to give yourself an online identity and connect to friends and family; Google Apps, a cloud-based productivity suite, is designed for business operations, and Amazon’s Kindle cloud computer provide storage and syncing for ebooks.  Some of these clouds are free and some are not.  How you use “The cloud” depends on what you want to do.

For most of us, cloud computing has become and integral part of daily life.  We used the cloud to store data, in case our laptop or smart phone is lost, gets stolen, or becomes damaged.  We use the cloud to auto-synchronize things like email, pictures, music and contacts between our devices.  And because cloud computing can maximize accessibility and increase our bottom line by reducing equipment acquisition, management, and operating costs, we use it for business.

So what can you do in “the cloud”?

We say “The sky’s the limit!”

Cloud Computing Humor

POLL: What do you think about Howard Store?

We just launched our new HowardStore website and we are so excited!  We want to know your favorite part of our new online store so we can provide you with the best possible deals and products.

Thank you everyone for your opinions, they are greatly appreciated!

Haven’t seen the brand new website?  You can check it out here.

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