Tips, Tricks, and How-To's

The Tips and Tricks section includes quick tips, how-to guides, and introductions to interesting apps and websites. A special emphasis is placed on productivity tips and applications. These are generally posted every Tuesday and Friday.

If you have a tip or app to share with us, please feel free to contact us. If your tip is published, you will receive credit for it in the post. Alternatively, you can write your own post by becoming a guest author.

Extending Battery Life of Smartphones


For the longest time it was the most irritating aspect of my smartphone. While I tried all the basic tips for conserving battery life, my Android smartphone still ate through a full battery in less than a day.

This became quite a pain during happy hour after work. I’d be down to around 10 percent, even if I didn’t use my smartphone much during the day. Worse, I wasn’t alone. That is, it wasn’t just me who was experiencing battery issues. Many smartphone users, whether Android, BlackBerry, or iPhone, have dealt with this.

How to Make Any Window Always Visible in Windows

Window on Top

Do you need to have an application window sit on top of other windows? For example, you can keep a calculator handy at all times. Regardless of what other window you switch to, this window will always be visible.

Some Windows applications, such as Task Manager, include such functionality, but most do not. For apps that do not, an app appropriately named Window on Top can help.

How to Quickly Hide Your Chrome Tabs with Disguised Tabs

Chrome Disguised Tabs Feat

Do you need to hide your current Google Chrome tab in a hurry without closing it? Are you on Facebook when you’re not supposed to be?

With a simple extension called Disguised Tabs, you can now hide and disguise your tab with one easy keyboard shortcut.

Wrap the Mouse Cursor Around Screen Edges with Unlimited Mouse

Unlimited Mouse

Having trouble moving a window from one side of the screen to the other? Want to be able to move your mouse cursor past the left side of the screen and have it appear on the right?

Here is a quick overview of Unlimited Mouse, a small and easy tool that lets you wrap the mouse cursor around the screen edges.

How to Quickly Type Common Phrases on Windows


Do you frequently find yourself typing the same things over and over? It can be annoying and time consuming to constantly type the same thing multiple times, especially if that phrase is one that you use very often.

AutoText is a feature found in Microsoft Office. It automatically changes a string of characters to a commonly used symbol or phrase. But what if you wanted this feature everywhere?

With PhraseExpress, you can abbreviate any phrase and have it automatically expand. This can be your name, a signature, a greeting, or anything you want.

Easily Customize and Tweak Windows with WinBubble

WinBubbles General Settings

Do you want to customize the background of Windows 7′s login screen? Or edit the OEM information? Or possibly some other hidden Windows setting without having to go through the registry? WinBubble can help.

WinBubble puts many settings that normally can’t be configured without digging through registry entries into one unified interface.

How to Automatically Fade the Windows Taskbar

Faded Taskbar

Do you find the Windows Taskbar distracting? It is a crucial and useful part of Windows, but sometimes all the icons can become distracting. You can use the built-in Auto-Hide feature but that can become annoying with the taskbar moving up and down whenever your cursor moves towards the edge.

Here’s how to make the taskbar automatically fade and become more transparent.

3 Simple Ways to Do Everything Faster on a Mac


In the last few years, Apple’s Macintosh operating system has captured significant market share.

Propelled in part by the popularity of Apple’s ubiquitous iPhones and iPads, more people than ever are giving up their PCs in favor of the Mac platform. While the Mac’s biggest selling points account for why many make the switch – near-invincibility from viruses, fewer crashes, etc. – there are some basic Mac features that many long-time users may still not be aware of.

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