Chris Hoffman

Joined December 2011

Chris Hoffman is a tech blogger and all-around technology addict living in Vancouver, BC. Connect with him on Google+ or Twitter.

Feel free to contact at choffman@makeuseof.com

367 Posts Published
2180 Comments Posted
166 Answers

Chris's Latest Posts

android-jelly-bean-icon.png

Top 12 Jelly Bean Tips For A New Google Tablet Experience

7th December, 2012

Android Jelly Bean 4.2, initially shipped on the Nexus 7, provides a great new tablet experience that outshines previous versions of Android. It even impressed our resident Apple fan. If you have a Nexus 7, Nexus 10, or another tablet running the latest version of Android, be sure to read these tips to make full use of your tablet.

black-lock-icon.png

4 Surprising Ways To Encrypt Your Data

5th December, 2012

Encryption is often considered the playground of geeks alone, but it doesn’t have to be. Encryption just means that information is scrambled and you can only access the real information with a special password or key. On an Internet where we don’t want our credit card numbers and other sensitive data exposed to prying eyes, encryption is an important tool.

canabalt-hd-icon.png

Run For Your Life With Canabalt HD [Android]

3rd December, 2012

You’re in your office when the city is attacked. You start running, leaping over a chair and out the window of a skyscraper, landing on the roof of a nearby building. An airship whizzes by, disorienting you, and suddenly a missile falls from the sky and lands in front of you. You try to jump, but it’s too late – you didn’t make it. You’re playing Canabalt HD, an enhanced version of the popular flash game Canabalt.

Get Your Tablet On: 11+ Epic Android Apps Optimized For The Nexus 7

30th November, 2012

When Apple released the iPad Mini – jumping on board the 7″ tablet trend pioneered by Amazon and Google – they said Google’s Nexus 7 lacked good tablet apps. While Android may not have the selection of tablet apps available for Apple’s iPads, the Nexus 7 does have many great tablet apps that are optimized for the larger screen. Here are some of them.

default-windows-7-libraries.png

Make Windows 7 & 8 Libraries Work For You

28th November, 2012

Libraries, found in Windows 7 and 8. are more than a list of suggested folders for saving documents, music, pictures, and video. Customizing your libraries isn’t just tweaking for the sake of tweaking – with libraries, you can streamline the way you organize your files and make yourself more productive. If you’ve ignored libraries so far and opted to organize your files the traditional way, be sure to give libraries a try.

lavasoft-ad-aware-pro-security-giveaway-box.jpg

Protect Yourself Online With Lavasoft Ad-Aware Pro Security [Giveaway]

27th November, 2012

If you’ve been around the Internet for a while, you probably remember Lavasoft Ad-Aware as one of the first big anti-spyware and anti-adware applications. Lavasoft Ad-Aware has become a complete antivirus and Internet security product, just as antivirus companies have added protection against spyware and adware to their own Internet security products. This week we’re giving away […]

no-windows-8-logo.png

It’s Not Easy, But You Can Uninstall Windows 8 And Revert To Your Old OS

26th November, 2012

If you’ve installed Windows 8 and found yourself wishing that you could go back to Windows 7 or another operating system, there’s a way to do this. If you installed Windows 8 in a dual-boot environment and kept your old operating system around, it’s not too hard – but if you’ve installed Windows 8 over your old operating system, you’ll have to reinstall the old operating system from scratch.

windows-8-and-7-dual-boot-logo.png

Not Sure About Upgrading? Then Why Not Dual Boot Windows 8 With Windows 7?

23rd November, 2012

Are you interested in Windows 8, but don’t want to abandon Windows 7 just yet? Well, why not dual-boot Windows 8 and Windows 7, selecting the operating system you want to use each time you turn on your computer? This allows you to test Windows 8 while keeping Windows 7 around as an escape hatch if you want out. This process will install Windows 8 on its own separate partition, leaving your Windows 7 system intact.

custom-windows-cursor-scheme-pulse-icon.jpg

Tired Of Your Mouse Cursor? Replace It With Something Fresh & Beautiful [Windows]

21st November, 2012

Let’s face it, the mouse cursors included with Windows are getting a bit old. While it’s seen a few tweaks over the years, that white mouse cursor has remained largely the same for over a decade. You don’t have to wait for Microsoft to give Windows a new mouse cursor set – you can easily download and use beautiful user-created mouse cursor sets for Windows.

customized-recycle-bin-icon.png

Make a Better Recycle Bin With These Great Tools & Tricks

19th November, 2012

Most of us are very familiar with the Recycle Bin. We use it regularly, and it seems like a feature we can’t do much to customize – deleted files go there, and we can permanently delete them later. But there’s a lot more you can do to customize and tweak your Recycle Bin, from placing it in your system tray and automatically clearing old files to changing its icon and name. The tips here apply to Windows 7 and should work similarly on Windows 8 and Vista, too.

clean-tablet-touchscreen.jpg

How To Safely Clean Your Tablet Or Smartphone’s Touchscreen

16th November, 2012

Cleaning a touchscreen is simple. You don’t need a special cleaning kit or cleaning solution to safely clean your tablet or smartphone’s touchscreen – you can do it with materials you probably have on hand. However, you do need to know what to avoid – many common types of cloths and cleaning solutions can damage a touchscreen. Once you understand what to do and what not to do, you can safely clean a smartphone or tablet’s touchscreen in just a few seconds.

chrome_new_logo

Why Do Chrome Plugins Need Access To ‘All My Data’ and ‘Browsing Activity’?

14th November, 2012

If you’ve installed Chrome plugins, you’ve probably seen a warning that they can access your data on all websites, your tabs and browsing activity, or even all the data on your computer. This warning can be scary, especially if you’re installing a simple browser extension that looks harmless. Unfortunately, the way web browsers and web pages work means that extensions must ask for quite a few permissions to do simple things.

windows-8-on-nexus-7.jpg

How To Test Windows 8 On A Tablet

12th November, 2012

It’s no secret that Windows 8′s new interface is a “touch-first experience” – Microsoft said it themselves. If you’re curious about upgrading to Windows 8, you can try Windows 8 on your PC – but unless you’re using a PC with a touch screen, it just isn’t the same. Assuming you have an iPad or Android tablet lying around, you can test Windows 8 with a touchscreen before you purchase a new Windows 8 PC or tablet.

tuxgame-300x300

Linux Gaming, an Overview: What You Can And Can’t Expect

9th November, 2012

While desktop Linux may be a tempting platform, there’s one thing stopping a lot of people from making the plunge: PC gaming. Like it or not, Windows is the de facto platform for PC gaming. You can’t count on Linux supporting your favorite games, but you may be surprised: some Windows games work on Linux using the Wine compatability layer.

ubuntu-logo-g

Updating Ubuntu OS & Applications: The Essentials Any Ubuntu User Should Know

7th November, 2012

Updating your Ubuntu operating system and its installed applications is a fairly simple process, but it works very differently from Windows. All the software you install from the Ubuntu Software Center comes from Ubuntu’s software repositories, so you can get updates in one place – think of it like an app store for your computer. When a new version of Ubuntu is released, you’ll be able to upgrade right from within Ubuntu.