99 Practical Tech and Life Hacks and Tips


This useful compendium of wide ranging tips and hacks covers the devices that we use, what's on them, and how we use them. There are useful tips for apps and software, plus day to day practical tricks, tips and techniques that save a little time and increase productivity. A sampling of the things covered include mobile phone hacks, downloading YouTube videos, browser navigation tips, cable management, tips for search engines and gmail, finding song titles, playing tetris on a Mac, useful web sites, how to turn your handwriting into a font, a few Word and Powerpoint tips, proofreading documents, and more. Here's a few tricks from the article:

  • Quickly to unfreeze a frozen mobile phone by plugging it into its charger.
  • Use has:attachment in Gmail search to list all emails that have attachments.
  • By using Dropbox’s Carousel media gallery, you will be rewarded with 3GB additional storage space in Dropbox. (no longer supported by Dropbox)
  • When booking flights or hotels online, clear cookies before you start looking, or shop in Incognito mode, for lower prices.
  • If your printer is out of black ink, change the font color to #010101 for 99% grey.
  • Make a small knot at either side of the earphone to identify left or right side of the earphones.
  • Use crocodile clips to organize, separate and keep your cables within reach.

My favorite tip is using the Space bar to scroll down in browser windows since so many sites have started generating exit pop ups if you move your mouse on the page - highly annoying when all you're doing is moving a mouse on the page. Hitting the Space bar plus Shift scrolls up.

With the amount and variety of useful information in the article everyone can find something they can use.

99 Tech Life Hacks You Should Know

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printer tip for no black ink, thanks

You're welcome. :)

I like tips and tricks, thanks. For a little more granular control than the spacebar, up and down arrows.

Thanks for the tip. :)

Thanks a lot :)

There are many tips which I did not know. In fact I used #3 tip to reopen Gizmo to post the comment, previously I used to "right mouse click undo".



You're welcome, I'm glad you found it useful. :)

Quote re Dropbox hack:
"Carousel is no longer supported

On March 31, we shut down Carousel and returned to a single Dropbox photo experience. Your photos are still safely backed up and accessible in the Dropbox desktop application, mobile app, and online at photos.dropbox.com."

Thanks for mentioning that, I've updated the article.

One or two caught my eye as not being something I would do without a little more poking around for information, like this one: "Laptop batteries can last longer if you charge them up to only 80% instead of the full 100%" I haven't done checked that one out, but I would before started that as a habit. And #30,  buying a product on Amazon, and getting a refund if there's is a price drop within 7 days - I think amazon is in the process of discontining that.

I think the laptop battery tip only applies to the first usage. Your probably not going to be able to prevent your laptop from bringing the battery to full charge on sub sequence instances anyway.

The problem with keyboard shortcuts is that you have to remember which ones are associated with what apps and unless you are using them on a daily basis you soon forget them. Some of the tips listed are pretty good although I had to laugh at #15.... carrying a debit card that allows access to an ATM makes more sense.

You have an interesting idea of an “emergency” if you always have access to an ATM anytime and anywhere :).

Maybe you know several places that accept paper money but not debit and are some distance from an ATM but I can't think of one in the city where I live.

Ok, I’ll bite. Not many, but some - but that’s not really the point. If you were aware of these places, then it wouldn’t be an emergency. You’d know ahead of time that you’d need cash. By definition, an emergency is something you aren’t expecting. I agree- in a big city this is less likely to be an issue than traveling for example, or in an unfamiliar area. But even around home or in a big city, this is a good tip for some people. If you really can’t think of any situations when having emergency cash would be useful - and don’t have access to ATM/Debit, here are some.

Heaven forbid your wallet gets lost or stolen. It would be handy to have some cash hiding in your phone case, until you can get that sorted out.

Standing in a checkout with a bunch of groceries and your card is declined for no apparent reason. Maybe a bank error. Glitches happen – cards have issues swiping or scanning sometimes. Surely you’ve been in line behind someone whose card just won’t swipe - the cashier breathes on it, licks it and wipes it on their pants, sticks it on their forehead, rubs it in their armpit, then wraps it paper - trying to get a good swipe. Sometimes cards or scanners just fail. Maybe that’s the guy in front of you, maybe that’s you :). Sure – you can leave all your groceries on the counter and go to an ATM and get some cash, or go to your bank and sort it out – assuming your bank is open – but that’s a bit inconvenient either way. Or you can pull out your emergency cash and be on your way..

Go out for a night with friends and forgot your wallet at home. You can borrow some money from your friends, or pay your own way with your secret “phone cash”.

Maybe you’ve spent more money than you realize and have none left in your account – or you have a shared account and didn’t realize your spouse/partner had made a big purchase and drained the account. Glitch with your payroll deposit…

Even in a big city – while traveling, your bank locks down your account due to “suspicious activity”. That’s happened to many people, myself included. Sure you can call them and get that sorted out- but when do you usually find out for the first time? – When you’re standing in front of a cashier trying to pay for something.

Maybe you didn’t notice that your card had expired. No problem – leave some collateral for the store/restaurant/gas station you’re at, go home and find the new card - then go back and pay for your items. Maybe not an emergency, but inconvenient. Would be nice if you just had $50 hiding in your phone case :).

Pull into a gas station running on fumes and see a sign on the door – “Network is down - sorry cash only”. Drive to another gas station? To an ATM and back? Not sure you’ll have enough gas to make it... Take a chance, or walk to the nearest ATM. Broad daylight in a nice area? No problem. Late at night in a scary neighborhood? Pouring rain? Even $10 cash would be really handy to get you on your way.

Those are just some examples that could happen in a big city scenario- never mind traveling or more rural areas or long stretches of highway with fewer ATMs and credit/debit access. Many people don’t live in big cities and having paper money available “just in case” could be a good idea. If you don’t this is useful - that’s cool :). I didn’t think it was such a ridiculous tip :).

I ran into one of these scenarios the other day. I was getting my oil changed at the small, family owned business I use in the town that's nearest to me. The service that allows them to process electronic transactions using debit and credit cards wasn't working and the phone company that provides the service said they wouldn't have it back up and running for a few days because they had to send someone from another state to fix it, even though the largest city in the state is half an hour away.