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Tuesday, Oct 15, 2019

Top tech myths people still believe in

Here’s busting some popular myths that could make you less technically challenged!

brunch Updated: Feb 17, 2018 22:46 IST
Rajiv Makhni
Rajiv Makhni
Hindustan Times
With new innovations in technology, most myths have also become outdated
With new innovations in technology, most myths have also become outdated
         

We’ve come a long way. There was a time when proclaiming yourself as a tech doofus was a badge of honour. Today everyone is quite the tech whiz. The omnipresence of the mobile phone in everyone’s pocket and easy access to the Internet has turned most people into self proclaimed experts. Still, the world of tech continues to have certain myths. Most of the myths I’ve listed below continue to be thrown around as absolute facts. How many of them do you believe to be the truth?

The battery myth

Today’s batteries don’t have a memory effect
Today’s batteries don’t have a memory effect

This has multiple forms. Don’t charge your laptop or phone overnight, don’t charge to a 100 per cent, don’t let it drain to zero, don’t charge more than once a day. Most are complete hogwash as they continue from the time of old school battery technology like Nickel Cadmium. Today, batteries don’t have a memory effect and almost every gadget has an auto cut-off before they overcharge. Do what you like with your gadget, the battery can take it!

Private browsing is safe and private

Nothing you browse is completely private
Nothing you browse is completely private

There you are scouting through porn sites and your ex-girlfriend’s Facebook account, blissfully unaware that almost nothing is private. Incognito or private browsing is now built into literally every modern browser but unfortunately it’s been named incorrectly. It should be called ‘No Record Browsing’ as it won’t leave a record of where you went just on your device. However, it doesn’t hide your browsing from your Internet Service Provider, the sites you visit, the cookies that are logging you in or any other information logging software. Next time use your dad’s computer!

Bigger, faster, stronger!

Incognito browsing is built into literally every modern browser, but it has not been named correctly

More RAM, more storage, faster processor, bigger hard drive, more display pixels, extra megapixels – it’s all snake oil now. Most is overkill and we don’t seem to be any the wiser. It’s almost impossible to fill that 256GB storage on your phone unless you’re filling it with illegal downloads, your naked eye cannot see the difference between 2K and 4K screens on a small phone screen, those 20 megapixel selfies have a lot of junk pixels within and that extra RAM needs to have other great hardware to really use it well. Buy what you know you can use, junk the rest!

Turn down phone screen brightness

Leave your phone brightness at 40 to 50 per cent
Leave your phone brightness at 40 to 50 per cent

Yes, we are told to do this to extend battery life and screen life. I’ve seen people buy really expensive phones and then immediately turn the screen down to zero brightness. You’re not going to get better battery life but will have to get some expensive glasses as you ruin your eyes. Leave your phone brightness at 40 to 50 per cent and tick the auto brightness setting.

There is no such thing as planned obsolescence

Devices slowing down till they are impossible to use. Just ageing tech or do companies slow them down as part of a plan? And it’s not just Apple, everyone does this. It’s done with new updates that require more hardware specs, by coming up with swankier devices every six months and a whiz bang feature that makes your one-year-old device look and feel like crap! Even app companies do it.

Deleting means it’s gone forever

All you did by deleting that file was take away the marker, which shows where the file is. When you sell your phone or your laptop, a tech-savvy person can easily recover most of it. A true wipe of data needs some extra tools. Remember that next time you sell something.

Many more come to mind, but the above ones are the classics that most people think of as the gospel truth.

Rajiv Makhni is managing editor, Technology, NDTV, and the anchor of Gadget Guru, Cell Guru and Newsnet 3

From HT Brunch, February 18, 2018

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First Published: Feb 17, 2018 22:46 IST

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