August 30, 2010

Kim Komando answers your gaming, computer questions

OSKALOOSA — Q. Can you help me decide which gaming console to buy? I like the Xbox 360’s controller and games. All my friends have it. But the PlayStation 3 has free online gaming. Also, can you tell me about new updates coming?

A. Gaming consoles are all about the games. So, if you like the Xbox 360’s games and controller, go with it. The PlayStation 3’s free online gaming doesn’t matter if you don’t like the games. Besides, you’ll enjoy playing against friends more than strangers. As for updates, both Sony and Microsoft are releasing motion-control systems. Sony’s Move will be out in September for $100; it is much like the Nintendo’s Wii controller. Microsoft’s Kinect, due in November for $150, does away with the controller altogether. Instead, a camera tracks your movements. At Komando.com/news, watch my video review of upcoming gaming systems.

Q. I often print recipes and news stories off the Internet. But I don’t like printing all the graphics. It’s a waste of ink and paper. Is there any way to print just what I need?

A. When you’re on a Web page, look for a Printer Friendly link. This makes printing much easier. And it should eliminate most graphics. You can also print a selection of a page. Make your selection and press Ctrl+P. In the dialog box, look for the Selection option. Choose it and then press OK to print. You can also select non-contiguous sections of a page. Make your first selection. Hold the Control key and make another one. A better option is HP’s free Smart Web Printing. It lets you tailor printing jobs to save ink and paper. Get it at Komando.com/news.

Q. I take a lot of photos. I started to receive annoying messages that my Mac’s hard drive was full. I freed up some space, but I’d like to prevent this in the future. Can you help?

A. It’s easy enough to check your hard drive usage. Just right-click (or Ctrl-click) your hard drive icon and select Get Info. You’ll see how much storage space you have left. As the drive gets full again, you’ll start to see those messages. So, you might consider downloading Space Control. This free program adds a meter to your menu bar. A quick glance shows how much space you have left. It will also display warning messages when the drive starts to get full. You can select when you want to see these messages. You can also get the warnings via e-mail. Get Space Control at Komando.com/news.

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