New Year’s resolutions for the fanboy, gadget addict and troll in all of us

NYE Resolutions for geeksLosing weight, quitting smoking and getting out of debt all make fine intentions, but that tired old list we trot every year could use some updates. If you’re anything like the rest of us who spend hours glued to smartphones, grooming our Twitter feeds and getting into virtual shouting matches on Reddit, you could probably use a few tech resolutions for 2013. Fortunately, I have a few suggestions.

Stop being such a fanboy

Based on my needs and wants, I have chosen to use Apple products. You, on the other hand, might have chosen Android. Believe it or not, that doesn’t make either one of us mentally deficient. As fragmented as our corporate technology space is, our personal technology space can and does coexist. The legal battles between our two sides are not games of Fantasy Litigation, and the outcomes of which really will not affect us. Our phones and tablets can accomplish 99.9 percent of the same tasks. I’ll even concede that I wish my wife could beam me dirty videos just by touching our phones together. Heck, I just wish she’d make dirty videos.

Hold companies responsible

I’ve written quite a bit in recent weeks about Apple’s manufacturing processes. Even though I wave an Apple flag, I think it’s important to hold the company accountable for working conditions that most people would find unacceptable in the 21st century. To its credit, Apple has been taking steps to rectify the situation abroad and will even begin making more hardware in the US next year. Let’s resolve give all companies the same fierce scrutiny in 2013.

Stop buying lame products

If any company makes a substandard product that does not advance the cause of technology innovation, we should resolve not to buy based on brand allegiance and fear of trying something new. The only way to spur the innovation that we all desire in the technology space is to reward the companies that innovate and punish the ones that seem to be standing pat. People have consistently remarked this year that it is simply a boring time, particularly in the mobile phone market. There’s only one way to solve that issue: Stop making it profitable for companies to sit still.

Give BlackBerry 10 a shot

The world seems to have passed BlackBerry by. Its stock is crumbling along with its once-tight grip on the mobile market. The BlackBerry 10 operating system, due next year, is a Hail Mary pass. We owe it to one of the mobile space’s greatest pioneers – and ourselves – to treat this new offering with an open mind. There might be room in the market for another ecosystem. However, per the previous resolution, if BB10 sucks we should also vociferously start pounding nails in BlackBerry’s coffin.

Remain firm in the cause of net neutrality

The Internet, in the form of common users, declared independence in 2012. We stood up to the media-sponsored government takeovers like SOPA and PIPA and voiced our objection to the UN ITU treaty. It’s foolish to think that special interests will not continue to try and claim one of our greatest international assets for their own personal gain. They have a lot of money (and politicians) in their pockets, but this year showed that when it comes to the Internet, the common person still has a voice. Stay strong in 2013.

Finally, stop retweeting and start real-tweeting

If you unplug occasionally and go out to experience this beautiful (until the icebergs melt and we’re all swimming) world, you’ll have more original experiences to share on your networks, rather than just forwarding the latest Facebook privacy hoax or some lame meme. Instead, you can realtweet (yes, I’m coining that term). Then, if you’re lucky, people not nearly as smart as you will retweet cool things you actually got to do in real life. Seriously, if you have to take a tech-free day, do it. If you have to play the phone stacking game during dinner, do it. If we become slaves to our machines, there is no John Connor or Neo coming to save us.

Computing

An inside look at Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8cx, a revolutionary laptop processor

Six years after Microsoft’s failed foray into ARM computing with Windows RT, its second effort with Always-Connected PC is now showing early signs of success. Microsoft partner Qualcomm told us how the Snapdragon 8cx might revolutionize…
Wearables

These are the best smartwatches for everything from fashion to fitness

Tempted to buy a smartwatch? If so, then the growing number of great models available means you've got plenty to choose from. But which one should you pick? Here is our list of the best smartwatches.
Computing

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.
Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Deals

Save big on these Braun electric razors and women’s epilators

Amazon and Walmart are currently offering limited-time deals for Braun electric razors and women's epilators. If you plan to make your way through all the festive parties this year with fresh smooth these tools will help.
Deals

The best air fryer deals you can still snag before Christmas

Christmas is closing in on us fast, but you still have a little bit of time left for last-minute kitchen gifts. We've searched the depths of Amazon and Walmart to bring you the best air fryer deals going on right now.
Product Review

The Brava Oven takes all the thinking out of cooking

Using bulbs to cook food at different light frequencies, the Brava Oven lets even the clueless cook a tasty meal. But your own smart chef doesn’t come cheap.
Deals

Best deals on smart locks so you’ll never have to worry about unlocked doors

Is your front door locked? We found the best deals on smart home door locks that take the worry out of wondering if your home is secure. You can lock or unlock your doors remotely and some models let you control locks with voice commands.
Deals

These Amazon kitchen deals are perfect for Christmas gifts and healthy eating

Today is day 10 of Amazon’s “12 Days of Deals,” and it’s all about kitchen. From blenders to Instant Pots to KitchenAid mixers and more, practical yet highly coveted small appliances are available for up to 50 percent off.
Smart Home

Ring Alarm vs. Nest Secure: Which one is right for you?

Thanks to the advance of technology, it's become really easy nowadays to secure your home and protect it from thieves, intruders, and unwanted guests. Which one of these two top contenders is right for you?
Smart Home

The Apple HomePod gets a whole lot cheaper today at Target

Apple's HomePod hasn't been the most popular smart speaker on the market but for users who are all in on Apple's heavily policed ecosystem of devices, this smart speaker is on serious sale at Target this week.
Cars

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…
Smart Home

Uber Eats is testing a system for cheaper meal delivery

You know how Uber Pool offers cheaper trips if riders share a car? Well, Uber Eats is currently testing the same idea for meal delivery, and it could mean cheaper orders for customers.
Smart Home

Dear Instant Pot Smart: I love you. Thank you for changing my life

After taking the Instant Pot Smart WiFi Programmable Pressure Cooker for a spin, one long-time product reviewer finds much to love about the device she long coveted, despite that it’s not really that smart.