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Headshot of MakeUseOf Writer, Yaara Lancet

Yaara Lancet

/ Joined 12 June, 2011

Yaara (@ylancet) is a freelance writer, tech blogger and chocolate lover, who's also a biologist and a full-time geek.

408 Articles
1305 Comments
Livescribe Sky Wi-Fi Smartpen Review and Giveaway [Twitter Exclusive]

Product Reviews

Livescribe Sky Wi-Fi Smartpen Review and Giveaway [Twitter Exclusive]

A few months ago, I took a close look at Livescribe’s Echo Smartpen, and was very impressed. Having liked the Echo Smartpen so much, I couldn’t imagine how it could get any better, so when Livescribe released the Sky Wi-Fi Smartpen I had to check it out. On paper, the Sky Smartpen should be everything the Echo was, but with the added bonus of wireless syncing. What could go wrong?

14-02-2013
Livescribe Sky Wi-Fi Smartpen Review and Giveaway [Twitter Exclusive]
9 Beautiful and Useful Instagram Tools to Get More Out of the Service

Internet

9 Beautiful and Useful Instagram Tools to Get More Out of the Service

After telling you how you can browse Instagram on the Web and on your desktop, after teaching you how to backup your Instagram photo collection, and being pretty sure you all know how to use the regular Instagram app, it’s time to show you some cool mashups, tools and hacks that will make Instagram even better, for you and for everyone you share with.

12-02-2013
9 Beautiful and Useful Instagram Tools to Get More Out of the Service
Polaroids In The Wind: Have You Backed Up Your Instagram Account?

Internet

Polaroids In The Wind: Have You Backed Up Your Instagram Account?

Ah, Instagram. There isn’t much that hasn’t been said about the photo-sharing phenomena. When I think about it, it still surprises me how a simple app like Instagram achieved such am superior status, but even the greatest social-media hater can’t deny its power and allure. Being a tech blog, we haven’t exactly ignored Instagram either. We’ve already told you about sites that enhance your Instagram experience – except for backup.

11-02-2013
Polaroids In The Wind: Have You Backed Up Your Instagram Account?
Don’t Unsubscribe! Keep Track of Newsletters, Receipts & More With the Beautiful Azigo

Internet

Don’t Unsubscribe! Keep Track of Newsletters, Receipts & More With the Beautiful Azigo

Here’s a task for you. Go to your inbox right now, and count how many newsletters and promotional emails you’ve received in the past week. How many did you get? 10? 50? 150? How many brands do you get these emails from? 5? 10? Maybe 20? While such emails are sometimes nothing more than spam you can ignore, you sometimes receive them because you actually care about these brands and what they have to say.

08-02-2013
Don’t Unsubscribe! Keep Track of Newsletters, Receipts & More With the Beautiful Azigo
Auto-Share Facebook & Instagram Photos With People Without Accounts

Internet

Auto-Share Facebook & Instagram Photos With People Without Accounts

Sharing photos online has become an integral part of our lives, but what about our loved ones who don’t have a Facebook account, or Instagram? While sharing digital photos with the world is easier than ever before, each network is still limited to those who actually take part in it. If you’re not lazy, this is not a real problem: you just post your photos on several social networks, upload them to Dropbox, or email them directly when necessary.

05-02-2013
Auto-Share Facebook & Instagram Photos With People Without Accounts
What Do Your Apps Know About You? Discover Interesting Facts With Clueful [iOS]

iPhone and iPad

What Do Your Apps Know About You? Discover Interesting Facts With Clueful [iOS]

Is your privacy important to you? Do you go out of your way to find out what the Web knows about you? Good for you. Privacy is one of the most important yet most neglected aspects of our online lives, and should be protected at all cost. When thinking of privacy, the first thing that comes to mind is usually Facebook, with its ever changing privacy settings, but have you ever considered what information your mobile apps can collect about you?

04-02-2013
What Do Your Apps Know About You? Discover Interesting Facts With Clueful [iOS]
Are You SURE You Know How to Use Google?

Internet

Are You SURE You Know How to Use Google?

Most of you are probably thinking “you bet!” or “what’s there to KNOW?” right about now. I believe you. The truth is, if you know how to enter a query and hit enter, you know how to use Google. At least in its basic form. And if you search often, you’ve probably also encountered Google’s OneBox results once or twice before. What are these OneBox results? While you may not have heard the name before, OneBox results have been around for years now

01-02-2013
Are You SURE You Know How to Use Google?
Loopseque Lite Turns Creating Music Into A Fun Game Anyone Can Play [iPad]

iPhone and iPad

Loopseque Lite Turns Creating Music Into A Fun Game Anyone Can Play [iPad]

I’m no musician, not even close. The last time I actually played a real instrument was years and years ago, and although I can easily play little tunes on both piano and guitar, it’s a far cry from knowing how to make music. To me, composing is a complete mystery, and making up even a tiny, simple song seems like an impossible task. Turns out there’s an app for that too, and it’s not as impossible as I thought.

29-01-2013
Loopseque Lite Turns Creating Music Into A Fun Game Anyone Can Play [iPad]
Going Vertical – Free Your Browser Window From Clutter With Vertical Toolbar [Firefox]

Browsers

Going Vertical – Free Your Browser Window From Clutter With Vertical Toolbar [Firefox]

I love Firefox. Yes, it’s not perfect, I’ll admit to that in a heartbeat, but for me, it’s almost everything I want from a browser. One thing that does bother me though, is its slight tendency for clutter. Take, for example, the default orange settings button. It’s big, it’s ugly, and it takes way too much space. Luckily, there are simple add-ons that take care of this menace and help me keep my Firefox window cleaner and clutter-free.

22-01-2013
Going Vertical – Free Your Browser Window From Clutter With Vertical Toolbar [Firefox]
Brief: The Simple RSS Feed Reader You Were Always Looking For [Firefox]

Browsers

Brief: The Simple RSS Feed Reader You Were Always Looking For [Firefox]

Recently, after using Google Reader for years without second thought, I started looking around at other readers. It’s not that I’m not loyal or even that I don’t like Google Reader, but using only Google Reader has been like eating only vanilla ice cream for years, and let’s face it, who wants to eat only vanilla ice cream when there’s so much goodness to be had?

21-01-2013
Brief: The Simple RSS Feed Reader You Were Always Looking For [Firefox]
Enhance Google Services with These 5 Add-Ons

Browsers

Enhance Google Services with These 5 Add-Ons

Most of us use at least one Google service each day – usually much more than just one. Search, Gmail, Reader, Calendar, Drive, Play, YouTube…. this is just a partial list of the services we use every day. And for good reason, too. Google’s services are not popular just because they have the name “Google” next to them – they’re actually very good, and constantly provide their competitors with inspiration and ideas.

18-01-2013
Enhance Google Services with These 5 Add-Ons
Automatic Coupon Finders – Do They Really Help You Save Money?

Browsers

Automatic Coupon Finders – Do They Really Help You Save Money?

Like many good things in life, coupons and promo codes are elusive. Saving money is never an easy thing, after all, and when you’re trying to find valid codes for something specific, you usually end up with many useless or expired codes, and lots and lots of open tabs. Think about it, how many times have you wanted to buy something and actually managed to find a discount code that helped you save money?

15-01-2013
Automatic Coupon Finders – Do They Really Help You Save Money?
No Bells & Whistles: Simply Read Your Feeds With Bamboo Feed Reader [Firefox]

Browsers

No Bells & Whistles: Simply Read Your Feeds With Bamboo Feed Reader [Firefox]

Bamboo Feed Reader is a simple and no-nonsense reader that focuses on the important part of RSS feeds – the reading. You won’t find too many fancy options, eye-catching themes or colorful buttons, but Bamboo Feed Reader provides what it sets out to deliver – a clean and simple reading environment.

14-01-2013
No Bells & Whistles: Simply Read Your Feeds With Bamboo Feed Reader [Firefox]
Email Faster & Better With Canned Responses

Internet

Email Faster & Better With Canned Responses

Don’t have time to cook lunch? No problem, grab a can. Need some camping chow that won’t go bad? Easy, get some canned food. Tired of typing the same email replies? Try canned emails! Think I’m kidding? Think again. Canned responses, or canned replies, are a feature that too many users have never even tried, but once you’ve tried them, there’s no turning back.

08-01-2013
Email Faster & Better With Canned Responses
Make New Firefox Tabs More Useful With These Add-Ons

Browsers

Make New Firefox Tabs More Useful With These Add-Ons

We all like to customize our things – it’s nice when they feel really ours. This is true for many aspects in life, and naturally, doesn’t skip computers, phones and software. If it’s possible to customize things even a little bit, someone’s going to do it. It doesn’t matter if the default is great – the default is what everyone has. So out go the defaults and in come hundreds of different customizations.

07-01-2013
Make New Firefox Tabs More Useful With These Add-Ons
Tech Through 90-Year-Old Eyes: Are We Really Better Off? [Feature]

Web Culture

Tech Through 90-Year-Old Eyes: Are We Really Better Off? [Feature]

Young people tend to look at the older generation as second class citizens when it comes to technology. This is apparent from jokes we see online every day, and it stems, among other things, from the real need to help our parents and grandparents cope with the huge technological advances of the last ten years or so. But what is it like for them? Are they really making use of everything technology has to offer, or are they merely standing at the sidelines of this revolution? I spoke to two tech-savvy 80-something ladies to seek the truth.

04-01-2013
Tech Through 90-Year-Old Eyes: Are We Really Better Off? [Feature]
Make Sure You’re Secure With Facebook’s New Privacy Settings: A Complete Guide

Internet

Make Sure You’re Secure With Facebook’s New Privacy Settings: A Complete Guide

Facebook also means two other things: frequent changes and privacy concerns. If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Facebook, is that they’re not really concerned about what we like or our privacy. Nor should they be. When it comes to privacy, it’s our responsibility as Facebook users to make sure we keep ourselves secure and safe while using Facebook.

01-01-2013
Make Sure You’re Secure With Facebook’s New Privacy Settings: A Complete Guide
Don’t Install An Image Editor: Try These Cloud-Based Photo Editors Instead

Internet

Don’t Install An Image Editor: Try These Cloud-Based Photo Editors Instead

If you want to get really good results, you need to download some kind of graphics software or other editing app, and put it through its paces. But now, you can do most of your photo editing online, and achieve some pretty impressive results. Yes, there are some things you’ll still need Photoshop and friends for, you can’t escape that, but today I’m going to show you several online editing tools that will blow you away. The future is truly here!

21-12-2012
Don’t Install An Image Editor: Try These Cloud-Based Photo Editors Instead
Too Many Clicks? Follow These Tips To Save Time With Gmail’s New Compose

-HIDDEN

Too Many Clicks? Follow These Tips To Save Time With Gmail’s New Compose

In a recent poll we held here at MakeUseOf, we found that over 75% of you already use Gmail’s new compose. By reading that poll’s comments, I’ve also gathered that while many of you are using the new compose, there are things many of you find annoying. The most common complaint, and one which I agree with wholeheartedly, is the increased amount of clicking, hovering and clicking this new interface requires.

18-12-2012
Too Many Clicks? Follow These Tips To Save Time With Gmail’s New Compose
What Are In-App Purchases & How Can I Disable Them? [MakeUseOf Explains]

Android iPhone and iPad

What Are In-App Purchases & How Can I Disable Them? [MakeUseOf Explains]

“I can’t believe it!” my cousin said to me the other day, “someone’s just bought a $10 in-app purchase on my mother’s phone, and she doesn’t even know what I’m talking about!”. Sounds familiar? How about your 2-year-old niece knowledgably tapping away on Talking Tom and buying herself a brand new action for $1.99? In-app purchases are fast becoming a very popular model, and the more common they become, the bigger the problem they impose.

17-12-2012
What Are In-App Purchases & How Can I Disable Them? [MakeUseOf Explains]
How Scammers Target Your PayPal Account & How To Never Fall For It

Internet

How Scammers Target Your PayPal Account & How To Never Fall For It

PayPal is one of the most important accounts you have online. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a huge PayPal fan, but when it comes to your money, you don’t want to play around. While getting your Facebook account hijacked is a huge annoyance, it’s nothing like getting your money stolen out of your PayPal account. And the scammers know this too. That’s why PayPal is one of the most targeted accounts for phishing and scams – there’s real money to be had.

14-12-2012
How Scammers Target Your PayPal Account & How To Never Fall For It
How To Create An Original & Unique Facebook Cover Photo Without Using Photoshop

Internet

How To Create An Original & Unique Facebook Cover Photo Without Using Photoshop

A while ago, I told you about the 6 best place to design your own Facebook Timeline cover for free. All these places are still great, and Timeline is still very much with us, so you can definitely check all of them out and design yourself a Timeline. You might, however, want something a bit different for your Timeline, something more original or a bit more hard to make. If you’re curious about these options, there are 3 more apps I want to show you today.

11-12-2012
How To Create An Original & Unique Facebook Cover Photo Without Using Photoshop
Having A Bad Day? Turn Your Life Into A Comic Book With Halftone [iOS]

iPhone and iPad

Having A Bad Day? Turn Your Life Into A Comic Book With Halftone [iOS]

Some days just don’t start right. Do you ever have days when you wake up in the morning and things just feel off? Your work seems meaningless, your life seems boring, you feel too fat/thin/tall/short, you don’t have time to do the things you really like, and things just suck in general. If you’ve never had one of these days, I’m sure we’re all jealous, but when this happens to me, I try to find small things to cheer me up.

10-12-2012
Having A Bad Day? Turn Your Life Into A Comic Book With Halftone [iOS]