I watch a lot of tech YouTubers for education and entertainment and the quality of the content is normally far above other genres of videos. I have been watching a up-and-coming YouTuber for a while, Jays Tech Vault and love his videos of him putting knockoffs from wish.com to the test and his videos are well produced and entertaining. Jay published a new video targeting Chromebooks and while I agree with many of his talking points, I do have some disagreements with several other talking points. Normally I would respond in a YouTube Comment however there is so much I want to say so I figured I would post them here. This is not to bash Jay or his videos and I strongly encourage everyone subscribe and support smaller creates like him.
Announcing the Chromebook Community
This website has seen a lot of growth over the past few years with my ChromeOS related content seeing over a thousand unique visitors a week and trending up. I love covering ChromeOS related news and coming up with new tutorials but one of the consequences of creating all of these tutorials is that I get a lot of emails from readers, often between 5-10 a week asking for help and advice. I have been contacted by people from all walks of life ranging from Chromebook manufacturers all the way down to parents who have questions about the Chromebooks that the kids were issued from school. I welcome these emails and will continue to welcome these emails but in many cases, I feel that there is more value in having these discussions in the open when possible so I am introducing the Chromebook Community!
ChromeOS 86.0.4208.0 Rolling Out to Dev – Crostini USB Support Enhancements
I have not covered many ChromeOS updates for a while but there were some surprises in 86.0.4208.0 that I had to make a post. It looks like the Chromium team quietly enabled support for additional USB device past-through in Crostini.
Amazon Scam Breakdown : The Bait And Switch for False Reviews
I was doing some window shopping this morning while waiting for some code to build on my computer and a item that Amazon recommended to me quickly caught my eye. It is clearly a fake 2 TB USB Flash Drive which is unremarkable as I have seen countless fakes and even wrote about it back in 2018, the thing that caught my eye on the listing is that the flash drive had over 360 reviews with a 4.5 star average review. How could this be??? Is there actually a legitimate way to get 2 TB of real flash storage for under $100 or is there something fishy going on? Oh yes, its definitely rotten fish. I stumbled into a bit of a rabbit hole this morning while doing some research on how this scam works.
Rethinking Life in a Post COVID-19 World
I have been thinking a lot over the past several months to try to make sense of the uncertain future that awaits us as we learn to cope with the impact COVID-19 has had on society and what our future looks like. It is highly unlikely that COVID-19 will ever disappear and will likely haunt us for the foreseeable future. COVID-19 has opened many people’s eyes and it is clear that the way we have been doing things in the past are no longer wise to continue to do the same way in the future. This post is a brain-dump of some of my thoughts and ideas as to how things should change in the future to adjust to life in a post COVID-19 world.
Chrome Remote Desktop On Ubuntu 20.04 Setup Guide/Setup Script
Chrome Remote Desktop is a excellent tool to allow you to access your computer’s desktop remotely. If you are a MacOS or Windows user, the installation of Chrome Remote Desktop is reliability easy but if you are a Linux user, there are a few extra steps you will need to follow to allow your computer to be accessed remotely. There are several tutorials on the internet to assist with this but many are outdated and no longer work. I decided to update the guide to allow it to work properly on Ubuntu 20.04 (and beyond), to make it easier, I even scripted out the hard parts to automate the installation. Here are the steps.
The Shortcomings of ChromeOS in 2020
It should not come as a shock that I am a huge fan of ChromeOS/ChromiumOS and while I am clearly a fan, I am also very critical of the operating system and want to see it evolve. A bit over 3 years ago, I wrote a article on my website outlining some of the major shortcomings with ChromeOS in 2017 and I am happy to say that ChromeOS has come a very long way. A lot of new and impressive features have come to ChromeOS since my post including proper SD card support for Android, upgrading the dated Android 6.0 and various other improvements that were not on my radar such as Linux application support. ChromeOS is a great operating system that has been a daily driver of mine for a long time but there are still several major shortcomings that I would love to see resolved in future releases of ChromeOS.
Will 2021 Be The Year of The Android Desktop?
In the Linux community, there is a longstanding trope aptly referred to as “The Year of The Linux Desktop” in which everyone predicts the year that the Linux desktop usage rates are the majority instead of the minority for typical home users. It is no secret that Microsoft has been hemorrhaging Windows users to MacOS, iPads, Android Tablets and even ChromeOS at a high rate, mostly due to the fact that the typical home users computer needs have vastly changed over the past few years to be more “browser-centric”. Many companies have tried to push Linux desktops as a alternative to Windows however they often failed, ChromeOS was the first consumer Linux distribution to see widespread home usage and widespread education usage. I would argue that 2020 may have been the year of the Linux Desktop, especially with many schools issuing Chromebooks to students for remote learning due to COVID however I feel that Android might be next.
DexOnLinux/DexOnChromeOS – How To (NO ROOT)
Samsung announced a new feature with the Samsung Galaxy Note 10, the ability to access Samsung Dex on a Windows or MacOS device. This in my opinion was a game changer as it could allow users to use the insane power of their Galaxy Note 10/Note 10+ devices on inexpensive hardware. Samsung released a client for MacOS and Windows but as usual left us ChromeOS/Linux users out in the cold. It turns out that there is indeed a way to use Samsung Dex on Linux and X64 Chromebooks like the Pixelbook (Affiliate Link), Pixelbook Go (Affiliate Link) or even Samsung’s own line of Chromebooks, It does need a bit of inexpensive hardware and WiFi to setup .
ePaper Dashboard POC
I was a bit bored after work and decided to mess with a ePaper Display I purchased a while back ago to try to create a basic dashboard. This is a complete hack but it shows some of the potential uses of this display. I posted a few photos of my dashboard on Facebook and several people asked for the code and instructions to build their own. This is a quick write up, not a planned article so please dont expect much proof-reading to happen.