close
Headshot of MakeUseOf Writer, Christian Cawley

Christian Cawley

Deputy Editor / Joined 2 December, 2011

Deputy Editor for Security, Linux, DIY, Programming, and Tech Explained. He also produces The Really Useful Podcast and has extensive experience in desktop and software support. A contributor to Linux Format magazine, Christian is a Raspberry Pi tinkerer, Lego lover and retro gaming fan.

1364 Articles
2039 Comments
Get Up To Speed With Formula 1: The Resources You Need

Internet

Get Up To Speed With Formula 1: The Resources You Need

The new Formula 1 season is already underway, but how will you keep in touch with the sprawling racing calendar, an annual competition that runs for nine months of the year and takes place across five continents? If you don’t know where to look for any of these, don’t worry – we do!

29-03-2013
Get Up To Speed With Formula 1: The Resources You Need
How To Tweak The Windows And Office Ribbon Menu

Windows

How To Tweak The Windows And Office Ribbon Menu

That pesky Ribbon Menu. Ever since its introduction in Office 2007, I’ve been struggling to come to terms with it. I much preferred the Office 2000/2003 method of “hiding” tools that you don’t use often – and I don’t think I’m alone in the preference. I also don’t like being “shouted” at. Fortunately there are a few tweaks that can be applied to the Ribbon Menu in Office and in Windows 8.

28-03-2013
How To Tweak The Windows And Office Ribbon Menu
How Xbox Live Users Can Benefit From A Windows Phone

Internet

How Xbox Live Users Can Benefit From A Windows Phone

If you’re a fan of mobile gaming and also own an Xbox 360 console, you might well be aware of Xbox Live, Microsoft’s digital delivery service that also supports multiplayer and most importantly allows you to unlock achievements in particular games and improve your Gamerscore. Some say that it has redefined gaming.

27-03-2013
How Xbox Live Users Can Benefit From A Windows Phone
Ilomilo: Cute, Challenging Xbox Live Puzzler For Windows Phone

Gaming

Ilomilo: Cute, Challenging Xbox Live Puzzler For Windows Phone

I’ve largely avoided puzzle games over the last twenty years, which makes me wonder why on earth I’m reviewing Ilomilo, a Windows Phone title that features cutesy, ditsy characters with backstories that could have come from a cereal packet and plenty of puzzles. Either I’ve gone mad under the strain of playing so many Windows Phone games of late, or else Ilomilo really is rather good.

21-03-2013
Ilomilo: Cute, Challenging Xbox Live Puzzler For Windows Phone
5 Tricks to Disable Annoyances and Improve Office 2013

Windows

5 Tricks to Disable Annoyances and Improve Office 2013

Microsoft Office 2013 has been available for some months now, and as is always the case with a new release there are a few quirks and annoyances that have led to users wondering if they have made the right choice. If you are feeling as if there are some quirks in the application that you would rather wish weren’t there then you should be pleased to know that there are workarounds and hacks that you can use to make Office 2013 far more agreeable.

15-03-2013
5 Tricks to Disable Annoyances and Improve Office 2013
Is Office 2013 For You?

Windows

Is Office 2013 For You?

I’ve been running the Microsoft Office 2013 trial on my new Windows 8 tablet lately, in order to get a good look at the finished product and decide whether to upgrade from Office 2010. While researching the paid options, however, I noticed that there is a bit of a disparity between the various paid options and the free software offered as part of Microsoft Office Web Apps. In short, there is a good chance that many users could be suckered into purchasing a copy of Microsoft Office 2013

14-03-2013
Is Office 2013 For You?
My Skype Got Hacked: Here’s What Happened & How I Fixed It

Windows

My Skype Got Hacked: Here’s What Happened & How I Fixed It

It’s so embarrassing. Here I am, a contributor at MakeUseOf with a background in data security, and I’m about to tell you how my Skype account got hacked. Not years ago before I became aware of the various threats and the signs that an intrusion had occurred, but recently. Just last Christmas. The worst thing about this is that I’d noticed that there was something not quite right about the way the account was behaving.

13-03-2013
My Skype Got Hacked: Here’s What Happened & How I Fixed It
3 Reasons Why Your Raspberry Pi Doesn’t Work Properly

DIY

3 Reasons Why Your Raspberry Pi Doesn’t Work Properly

I’ve been living with the Raspberry Pi for several months now, and have found this astonishing little computer to be even more amazing than expected. Despite its diminutive dimensions, the Raspberry Pi is as fruity and satisfying as its name suggests. However, there are users out there who have had less than successful experiences with the Raspberry Pi. There might well be varying reasons for this.

08-03-2013
3 Reasons Why Your Raspberry Pi Doesn’t Work Properly
How To Install Apps On a Windows Phone 8 Device

Internet

How To Install Apps On a Windows Phone 8 Device

Since their launch in late 2012, Windows Phone 8 handsets have built upon the legacy established with the previous Windows Phone 7, released in 2010. There are many developments and key changes, from enabling better control of the Start screen to the opening up of additional APIs to enable developers to build better apps. One particular difference is in the addition of new apps and games from the Windows Phone store.

06-03-2013
How To Install Apps On a Windows Phone 8 Device
Share Movies, Photos, And Documents From Windows Phone With SkyDrive

Internet

Share Movies, Photos, And Documents From Windows Phone With SkyDrive

One of the improvements delivered with Windows Phone 8 is enhanced support for SkyDrive, Microsoft’s cloud storage system that enables users to upload and sync photos, music, video and more between different devices. Up against competition from cloud storage services such as Box, Dropbox and Google Drive (although of these, only Box has an official app), how does SkyDrive stand up?

28-02-2013
Share Movies, Photos, And Documents From Windows Phone With SkyDrive
Acer Iconia W7 Windows 8 Tablet PC Review and Giveaway

Product Reviews

Acer Iconia W7 Windows 8 Tablet PC Review and Giveaway

Slimline, sleek, sexy and silver – but you can’t have everything. The Acer Iconia W7 is a Windows 8 tablet priced between $799 and $999 (depending on the chosen model) that looks as though it should be running Windows 8 RT, but is equipped with a Core i3 CPU, 4 GB RAM and a 64 GB SSD, thereby trouncing the majority of similarly-sized devices in the spec stakes. Realistically, this isn’t a perfect computer. It has some faults, some in the design, others in the execution. But it remains a fascinating piece of equipment, as I’m about to explain. We’re also giving a brand new one, so if you’re looking for sub-$1000 Windows 8 tablet PC, be sure to join the giveaway!

28-02-2013
Acer Iconia W7 Windows 8 Tablet PC Review and Giveaway
The Amazon Store for Windows Phone: Never Set Foot In The High Street Again

The Amazon Store for Windows Phone: Never Set Foot In The High Street Again

Amazon’s march to online domination has come thanks to a number of strategies. Most obvious is the low pricing, the supply chain management and the facility to let anyone sell their wares through the marketplace. However, the ease of use of the website is also a core part of this – and by extension, any mobile app created needs to offer all of the main features of the browser-based experience.

27-02-2013
The Amazon Store for Windows Phone: Never Set Foot In The High Street Again
Is There Any Device You Can’t Turn Into a Media Center? Wii, Xbox, Android & More

Technology Explained

Is There Any Device You Can’t Turn Into a Media Center? Wii, Xbox, Android & More

Over the years on MakeUseOf, we’ve provided guidance on how to move closer to the Utopian dream of a universal media centre, capable of playing anything. In that time, it has become apparent to us that there are countless ways in which you can create your own media centre, using PCs, games consoles and even smartphones and tablets. In fact, it is getting to the point where households are finding that their various appliances are split into two groups.

22-02-2013
Is There Any Device You Can’t Turn Into a Media Center? Wii, Xbox, Android & More
The Raspberry Pi Home Theater: What You Can And Cannot Do

DIY

The Raspberry Pi Home Theater: What You Can And Cannot Do

If you’ve been following our recent articles about the Raspberry Pi, you’ll know that it can be set up as a media streaming client with a dedicated XBMC build and you should also be aware that by teaming the device up with any additional hardware (external hard disk drive, cables and adhesives), it can become the complete media center.

21-02-2013
The Raspberry Pi Home Theater: What You Can And Cannot Do
Win Auctions From Your Pocket With Windows Phone’s eBay App

Win Auctions From Your Pocket With Windows Phone’s eBay App

Winning an auction that ends when you’re away from your keyboard has proved much tougher – which is where mobile apps come in. Available free from the Windows Phone apps + games service, the eBay app doesn’t only let you purchase, however. With eBay installed on your device, you can browse, buy and sell, making great use of your handset’s camera and keyboard!

20-02-2013
Win Auctions From Your Pocket With Windows Phone’s eBay App
Get Tweeting On Windows Phone With Multiple Account Support!

Internet

Get Tweeting On Windows Phone With Multiple Account Support!

A quick look at the Windows Phone apps + games service will reveal an endless list of Twitter related apps for the device – which is strange as Twitter functions (such as Tweeting and retweeting) can be found in the People Hub! So, why do so many Twitter apps exist, and why would you choose the official Twitter app as your preferred choice?

15-02-2013
Get Tweeting On Windows Phone With Multiple Account Support!
Use Windows 8 In Style With These Amazing Metro (Modern) Apps

Windows

Use Windows 8 In Style With These Amazing Metro (Modern) Apps

Windows 8 hasn’t quite taken off yet, but this shortcoming certainly isn’t due to a lack of apps. After all, there are several years’ worth of traditional Windows desktop apps to fall back on! As for those optimized for use under the Start screen and the Modern UI, however, there are several that really take advantage of the platform and its new visual style.

14-02-2013
Use Windows 8 In Style With These Amazing Metro (Modern) Apps
The Hardware You Will Need To Build A Raspberry Pi Media Center

DIY

The Hardware You Will Need To Build A Raspberry Pi Media Center

With so many ways of using it, you shouldn’t be surprised to find that the Raspberry Pi has sold over 1 million units. Although designed for one key purpose (programming) this small credit card-sized computer is capable of so much more – which is why it seems to have become a popular choice as a home media centre solution.

13-02-2013
The Hardware You Will Need To Build A Raspberry Pi Media Center
Windows 8 Doesn’t Come with Aero – But You Can Add It With These Tools

Windows

Windows 8 Doesn’t Come with Aero – But You Can Add It With These Tools

Whichever way you look at it, Windows 8 has been a controversial release. The latest version of Microsoft’s domestic operating system has built in touch and no Start button on the Desktop view, something that has led many to avoid it. This is a shame as beyond the Start screen and Charms bar, things run pretty much as they always did. One area in which Windows 8’s Desktop isn’t quite the same as Windows 7, however, is in the selection of themes.

08-02-2013
Windows 8 Doesn’t Come with Aero – But You Can Add It With These Tools
How to Get Free Wi-Fi Almost Anywhere

Web Culture Internet

How to Get Free Wi-Fi Almost Anywhere

Public wireless networks are becoming more and more popular as a means of attracting people to a particular business or service, and this is just one of the many ways in which free (or almost free) Wi-Fi can be accessed. It seems, in fact, that there are many ways in which you can connect wirelessly to the Internet, almost anywhere…

07-02-2013
How to Get Free Wi-Fi Almost Anywhere
Enjoy Podcasts, Music, Talk & Sport On Windows Phone With TuneIn Radio

Enjoy Podcasts, Music, Talk & Sport On Windows Phone With TuneIn Radio

Aware that I should probably listen to the occasional contemporary sound, I became a convert to the BBC’s 6 Music channel, which plays an astounding mix of great tunes from the 1950’s to the 2010’s. Now able to get my fix of good music, it suddenly occurred to be one day when I was heading out that I would be unable to listen to this digital-only radio station in the street – without a suitable mobile app with which to do so.

06-02-2013
Enjoy Podcasts, Music, Talk & Sport On Windows Phone With TuneIn Radio