Matt Smith

Joined May 2010

Matthew Smith is a freelance writer living in Portland Oregon. He also writes for Twitter or .

Feel free to contact at mattsmith@makeuseof.com

911 Posts Published
976 Comments Posted
145 Answers

Matt's Latest Posts

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The Five Best Netbooks To Buy Today

9th June, 2010

The Netbook craze has died down a bit, but that’s hardly surprising. Netbooks were something of a revelation, and when they first started to become available their popularity exploded. This is now starting to level out – having taken about 20% of the mobile PC market – and they are also starting to mature significantly. […]

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How To Benchmark & Troubleshoot Game Performance Using Fraps

9th June, 2010

Synthetic benchmarks are a great tool for finding out how well your computers can play games. They provide a baseline which allows you to compare how upgrades and changes to your computer have improved or degraded performance. Synthetic benchmarks can also be used as a point of comparison to other systems with similar specifications, which […]

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The Three Best Free Firewalls for Windows

7th June, 2010

The Internet is a dangerous place. Viruses, worms, Trojan Horses – there seems to be all manner of threats just waiting to spring on your computer and cause trouble. One way of protecting yourself is, of course, through the use of antivirus program. An antivirus can detect a problem and quarantine the file which is attempting […]

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How To Convert A Movie Into An Animated GIF

5th June, 2010

The animated .GIF is a strange form of expression. It is only twenty or thirty frames, completely devoid of sound, repeating in an endless loop. Yet there is something intoxicating about an animated .GIF, like staring into the eyes of a hypnotist. Creating your own animated .GIF from a movie can be a lot of […]

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3 Easy Steps To Repair Internet Explorer 8

4th June, 2010

Internet Explorer 8 is Microsoft’s best web browser yet. Unlike some previous versions, Internet Explorer 8 is actually competitive with Firefox, and since it comes standard with Windows 7, its popularity will only grow as people switch to Microsoft’s new operating system. The improvements made to Internet Explorer 8 doesn’t mean however that it is […]

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7 Must-Have Google Desktop Gadgets for Productivity

31st May, 2010

Google Desktop is a great tool for social networking. The Twitter and Facebook gadgets allow you to keep up to date with your friends without even having to launch a full web browser. Other Google Desktop gadgets, like custom clocks and computer performance meters, just flat-out look cool. But Google Desktop isn’t just a novelty. […]

The 5 Best Free Benchmark Programs for Windows

30th May, 2010

There are many tools that promise to optimize or speed up your Windows computer, but how can you make sure the software did what it promised? Confirmation bias can make it very, very hard to simply “eyeball” your computer’s speed because you’ll usually want to confirm that your efforts made an impact. If you have no objective way of knowing how fast your computer is you won’t be able to figure out which optimizations work and which don’t.

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Test Your Graphics Card Stability with Furmark [Gaming]

27th May, 2010

Furmark is a free utility which is designed to perform a graphics card stability test to determine performance and stability. The goal of Furmark is to help you put your video card under the most extreme circumstances possible so that you know your video card can handle the latest games. Furmark is capable of putting […]

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How to Make an Animated GIF Image with GIMP

26th May, 2010

Animated GIF images are a great way to attract attention to certain parts of your site, create simple but effective banner ads, or simply have fun. Memorializing your favorite scenes from movies in GIF format is a riot. However, there are not very many good GIF editing programs available for free. Those which are available […]

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How To Overclock An ATI Video Card With ATI Overdrive

24th May, 2010

Overclocking is the art of increasing the speed of computer hardware beyond stock settings and is a popular way of improving computer performance. Video cards, like many other components, can be overclocked in order to increase performance in games. If you ever wanted to overclock your video card, it used to be difficult, but competition […]

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How Intel Turbo Boost Works [Technology Explained]

23rd May, 2010

Normally the computer processor in your laptop or desktop has a standard clock speed which partially determines how quickly it performs. While the processor might lower its clock speed at times in order to conserve power, the clock speed which is stated when you buy the computer is the fastest clock speed you’ll receive unless […]