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Is a Google Chrome Notebook Right for You?

Is a Google Chrome Notebook Right for You?

    If you’ve been living under a rock, or just don’t follow the tech industry all that closely, you might not be aware that Google has been working on their Chrome operating system and a notebook that runs off of it.  In late 2010 they began taking applications for people to test out the never-to-be-released, beta notebooks known by the moniker CR-48.  They’ve since distributed the notebooks to a select group of media people and other random folks chosen from the applications, and on Wednesday word began to leak about when a Chrome-powered notebook might actually be available to consumers for purchase.  It looks as though at least one Chrome notebook will hit the market this summer, but how do you know if this would be the right purchase for you?  Here are a few things to consider:

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    What will you use it for?

    If you’re hoping to get a Chrome notebook to replace your existing laptop or desktop computer, it’s not quite there yet.  Having used the CR-48 for several weeks now, I would say it’s a great internet device.  There is no physical harddrive included in the setup, and you can’t run programs like Photoshop on it.  But if all you want to do is surf the net or type up a report, it’s perfect.  It’s lightweight, boots incredibly fast, and has an amazing battery life.  It’s great for taking along, and for browsing the web while lounging on the couch.

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    Like Android and iPhone smartphones, Chrome notebooks rely on apps for additional functionality.  Apps for the device are available in the Android Market.  And if you really do need to save something, the device includes a SD card slot so you may as well invest in a fairly large capacity SD card if you just can’t break away from the habit of saving everything on a physical piece of memory, rather than having it out there in the cloud somewhere.

    Right now, a Chrome notebook won’t completely replace a traditional computer.  You’ll want to check them out though if all you really want is another cool toy that will let you surf the net.

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    How much do you have to spend?

    For a notebook that lacks a harddrive and a CAPSLOCK key (they replaced it with a search button — genius!!), I can’t say I’d see them pricing it ridiculously high. My guess is they’ll be valued at around $500 MSRP, give or take a few dollars.

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    The latest rumor is that the search giant will release the notebook as a subscription service, with users paying in the $10-20 per month range.  Those who’d rather not deal with monthly fees could skip the installment payments and just buy it outright.  In other words, if you’re lacking funds to pay for it, you can get on the subscription service and pay only a little bit at a time.  Or if you’ve got extra cash and, you can just pay for the thing all at once and not have to worry about making a monthly payment. The subscription service, however, will make the Chrome notebook available to more people.

    Summary:

    The Chrome notebook isn’t quite up to snuff to compete with enterprise computing, but for the average Joe consumer, it’s got mostly everything needed.  You can still plug-in your digital camera and upload your photos to Picasa, Flickr, Photobucket, or whatever other online photo sharing service  you use, you can check your email, surf the net, and write a report with Google Docs.   It’s a great device for when you really don’t need “everything”, and boasts some pretty good specs. It’s just so simple and easy to use.

    If you’re itching to get your hands on a Chrome notebook and weren’t selected to be a part of the CR-48 program, don’t fret — they’re hitting the market soon.  On Wednesday sources indicated that at least one model would be available in June/July, which is not that far around the corner.  It will be interesting to see how the consumer devices have been altered from the CR-48 test units, but I don’t expect it to be a far cry from what I’ve already seen.

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    Julie McCormick

    Julie McCormick is a writer, and co-owner of The Cleveland Leader, a Technorati Top 1000 site.

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    Last Updated on January 13, 2020

    11 Brain Training Apps to Train Your Mind and Improve Memory

    11 Brain Training Apps to Train Your Mind and Improve Memory

    Whether at work or at school, people these days are under tremendous pressure to perform, perform and perform! Stress and pressure can have adverse affects on the well-being of a person, and need to be controlled.

    Now, this doesn’t mean you make a dash to your nearest therapist. There are a number of wonderful and smart apps that you can use on your phone. These brain training apps have been scientifically designed to target specific areas of the human mind and control harmful emotions such as anxiety, as well as to improve memory and sharpness of the brain.

    Here are 11 iPhone apps that you will not only enjoy but also find useful in keeping your mental health balanced at all times.

    1. Lumosity

    This app consists of games that focus on improving the user’s memory, problem-solving capability, attention span, and thinking. There are three games in each session, and they challenge the brain by changing every time. The user has to complete the games while playing against a clock.

    Free of trial. $15 per month for the full version.

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    Luminosity Mind training apps-Lifehack

      2. Fit Brains Trainer

      This brain training app has 10 sets of games that work on different areas of the brain and improve memory as well as concentration. A user is required to finish a particular task from each category on a daily basis and the app tracks the progress by a color coded graph.

      Free.

      Fit Brains Trainer Mind training apps-Lifehack

        3. CogniFit Brain Fitness

        Developed with the help of neuroscientists, this fun app improves a person’s cognitive abilities, which includes memory and concentration. The progress made by the user over a period of time can be tracked. Users can also play challenge rounds with their friends. The app also modifies the difficulty level to suit the profile of the user and provide recommendations based on the results. Spending 20–30 minutes a few times every week can give measurable improvement in the performance of a user.

        First four games free, then $13 a month.

        cognifit-Mind Training Apps-Lifehack

          4. Brain Fitness Pro

          The makers of this app claim that it can improve the IQ of a user, and improve intelligence and memory. The app is fun and is user friendly, and 30 minutes a day can fetch you results in less than three weeks.

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          Buy for $3.99.

          5. Happify

          If nothing else makes you happy in life, this app will. Well, this is what the developers claim at least. This app comes loaded with lots of quizzes, polls and gratitude journals, which work on the fundamentals of positive psychology. The app also helps to control stress and emotions to make you feel better.

          Free to use.

          Happify-Mind Training Apps-Lifehack

            6. Clockwork Brain

            You will like the little gold robot that comes in every time to explain the next game you are going to play. While the games are not much different to those offered in apps such as Luminosity, the look and feel reminds me of a workshop from old times.

            Free.

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            Clockwork Trsin-Mind Training Apps-Lifehack

              7. ReliefLink

              Initially created as an app for suicide prevention, it has found its use as a great app for tracking the mood of the user by taking measure of all things relevant to the user’s mental health. In case the user experiences high emotional stress, the app has a coping mechanism that includes voice-recorded mindfulness, exercises and music for relaxation. There is also a map that informs the user of the nearest therapist and medical facilities for mental health treatment.

              Relief Link - Mind Training Apps - Lifehack

                8. Eidetic

                Eidetic is a memory enhancement app and uses a ‘spaced repetition’ technique to help users memorize information such as important phone numbers, words, credit card details or passwords. It also notifies you when it’s time to take a test to see what you remember, so that you retain information in your long-term memory.

                Eidetic - Mind Training Apps - Lifehack

                  9. Braingle

                  Braingle helps to maintain the sharpness of the brain and improve the reasoning ability of a person through riddles and optical illusions. It is different from other brain training apps that employ memory and reaction based tests. You can also compete with your friends and family members in figuring out the fun riddles.

                  Free.

                  Briangle- Mind Training Apps-LIfehack

                    10. Not The Hole Story

                    If you have a penchant for solving hard riddles, then this app is a must-have for you. Filled with exclusive riddles along with a simple-to-use interface, the app gives you riddles that you have to solve through a book. You will be given hints along the way, and when you give up, the answers will be revealed. This app will encourage you to broaden your thinking and put your mind to a challenging test.

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                    Free.

                    Not the hole story - Mind Training Apps - Lifehack

                      11. Personal Zen

                      This fun brain training app follows the journey of two animated characters who travel through a field of grass. Personal Zen is a nice app meant for reducing anxiety and trains the brain to focus on the positive aspects. The developer’s advice is to use the app for 10 minutes a day to see the best results.

                      Free.

                      personal zen- mind training apps - lifehack

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                        Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

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