I like to think of myself as a pretty tech savy nery type fella when it comes to knowing about what's fact vs. fiction in the world of tech. I actually learned a lot from this article I found (and wanted to share with you) in the Huffington Post. Check it out:
In the tech world, as in just about any other sphere, there are certain myths, campfire stories and old wives' tales that get passed down and repeated until they transform themselves into indestructible kernels of well-worn wisdom. You know the type of "facts" I'm talking about: You can't quite remember the source, but you "heard it on TV" or "read it on the Internet" or "one of your friends told you" it was true, or else it seems so obvious, and you've known it for so long, that it must be accurate.
Here's the first four for a sample... for the complete list and article scroll down to the bottom of this page.
Macs Don't Get Viruses
The More Megapixels A Camera Has, The Better It Is
When asked why his speakers
, whose volume count went to 11 rather than the traditional 10, were superior to other speakers, Spinal Tap lead guitarist Nigel Tufnel chewed his gum, thought about it for a moment, and then responded, "Well, it's one louder, isn't it?" before famously concluding, "These go to 11."
It was nonsense, and so is the idea that the higher the megapixel count on a camera, the better that camera is. Just because a camera goes "one louder" than another does not mean it will give you better photos.
A higher megapixel count is important if you plan on blowing up a photo to a larger size and don't want to lose quality (CNET explains
), but for normal viewing, megapixels aren't as important as having a quality camera lens and light sensor.
More goes into a camera than just megapixels, and you shouldn't be making your digital camera or smartphone selection based solely on the number of MPs it boasts (Gizmodo has a nice, human explanation
of why "megapixels don't matter"). Photography is more nuanced than a round number. There are better ways to get that "extra push over the cliff" (as Tufnel puts it) than increasing your megapixels.
Closing Out Apps On Your iPhone Extends Battery Life
For a long time, the common wisdom held that in order to save battery life on the iPhone, we could just double-tap the home button and close out all the apps on the bottom tray that we weren't using. BLOOP BLOOP BLOOP: 'X' out of the apps, and battery would be saved.
Except, here's the thing: Those apps you see when you press the home button twice aren't actually running or using up any battery. As Fraser Speirs pointed out earlier this year
, that row of icons is a list of recently used apps, NOT currently-running apps; when you hit the home button and exit an app, the iPhone automatically shuts it down after five seconds or so. Except in special cases (listed on Speirs' site
), the app is not running nor eating up battery life.
Closing out apps might be dang satisfying -- it's like playing whack-a-mole! -- but it is almost certainly not preserving battery life.
A Magnet Can And Will Erase Your Hard Drive
Magnets: How do they work? It's a sincere mystery to most, but this much we do know: Unless you keep some ridiculously powerful degaussing magnets in your home, you're probably not going to zap your hard drive with one. PCWorld debunked this one
all the way back in 2004: Though a common magnet can erase the contents of a floppy disk (remember those?), USB storage, SD cards, and laptop and desktop hard drives are safe from all but the very strongest magnets. In more detail, meanwhile, PCMag attempted to find out
what it would take to use a magnet to erase a laptop's hard drive without removing it: The magazine found that you would need an incredibly strong, industrial-strength magnet pointed in just the right direction in order to wipe a hard drive's contents, and that it was about as unlikely as my getting a date to junior prom (really, really unlikely).
In other words, your data is probably A-OK if you accidentally place a refrigerator magnet on your MacBook. Better safe than sorry, of course -- you shouldn't keep magnets near your hard drive, nor your laptop near your sperm, nor magnets near your sperm, etc. -- but it's still not likely you're going to wipe your memory with any magnet you keep at home.