Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Life Hack A Day - Hacking The Internet

I don't know how anyone adulted before the internet.

Think about it: how many times a day do you google how to do something, or check something online?

You can get a degree online, learn new skills, consume media, or start a blog to share your thoughts with the world.

For my third week of the life hack a day project, I decided to try out some of the hacks that took full advantage of the internet. Hacking the internet as it were... but with considerably less skill than people who actually do that.

I found some GREAT new sites, learned some interesting things about my computer and had a lot of fun in the process.

June 11 - Play Nintendo games online for free! - PASS

OK, so I was really excited about this hack because I love my old school Nintendo games (basically as soon as xBox released those dual joysticks my ability to play video games disappeared)

So the negatives: I found this site a BIT laggy (but we can probably blame that on the internet in my apartment) AND... no Mario games, which really sucked.

But there were literally HUNDREDS of other games! I had a fun hour playing an old Mickey Mouse game, a fighting game, and some racing games. Definitely worth checking this hack out.

June 12 - Get recipes for what ingredients you already have in your kitchen - PASS+

OKAY... this site is my NEW FAVOURITE THING!

Seriously, it's a search engine that pulls recipes from the internet based on the ingredients you feed into it. It has easy "select" options for everything from veggies and meat to spices and oils to really round out your options, and it pulls amazing looking dishes.

It pulled 99 DIFFERENT OPTIONS when I typed in "Eggs, Cheese, Butter". I had a blast playing with it and Kris is psyched because he often struggles with putting our pantry items together.

If you are needing to get creative with your ingredients and don't want to run out to shop, this is a really useful tool.

June 13 - Get a 15-20% discount by leaving a cart at Apple.com - Pending...

Alright so, I kind of screwed up this hack. I went to Apple.com during my food hacks week so that I could report on this by the time this post came out. Unfortunately, you need to save your cart at Apple's online store so it cleared it and I didn't know.

This is the first time I think I've ever been to a website that clears your cart and doesn't hold everything with cookies... I wonder if it's to avoid people abusing this hack?

Anyway, on June 13th I went to check my cart and realized what had happened, I will update once I have an answer.

June 14 - Watch regionally blocked YouTube videos - FAIL

I really wanted this hack to work because, living in Canada, I don't get to see a lot of US media online (like, anything from SNL). Unfortunately my hope in this hack was short lived.

You have to download the ProxTube browser extension to get this to work. That's how you get viruses; NO THANK YOU. It's easier for my to change my IP than to try and use this hack to watch Melissa McCarthy do her thing.

June 15 - Use an online version of Photoshop for FREE - Pointless

I actually really liked this website, but I found it a bit slow and clunky. I would say that whatever photo editing software comes installed with your computer (or heck, on your phone) would be just as good.

That said, it offered a pretty comprehensive editing suite (even if a bit hard to use) and would be great in a pinch if you were using a friend's computer or a public computer to do some edits (say, if you were on vacation)

June 16 - On lozo.com you an put everything on your shopping list and it will give you coupons for each item - Pointless

I'm going to go ahead and give this one a pointless as well. While Lozo DOES offer lots of coupons (that don't seem to have any expiry), they aren't on products that I generally like to buy (juice boxes, a lot of packaged goods, almost no fruit)

It could be I caught this site on a bad day, and one of the features I DID like is that you can sign up to receive coupon alerts. I think I'll try and give this another chance because coupon-ing is something I wish I were better at.

June 17 - Delete tourists from your travel photos (or people from your scenery shots!) - PASS

Alright so a quick note, I do all my editing in Windows Live Photo Gallery, so the feature you want to use for this is "Photo Fuse", and it TOTALLY WORKS!

I was so happy to see this. Now I didn't use a tripod so the bottom of my picture was a little wonky, but I was able to replace "obstructed" areas with "clean" areas quite easily! This is great for scenery shots, or even for removing someone from the background of your personal photos provided you have at least one "clean" image to use.

I can't wait to make better use of this feature. Big pass!

So all in this was a pretty successful week of Life Hacks. I really only had one outright fail and it's possible it works but I'm just not willing to risk the health of my computer on that one.

Unfortunately I didn't find out if I'm getting a good deal on blue tooth headphones just yet but I will be sure to update this post as SOON as I know (and I'll put something on my instastories too!)

Next week's hacks (or I guess, this weeks) is the "to good to be true" category. Things like homemade spider repellent, un-shrinking a shirt, and getting double your money's worth from a vending machine!

Got a good hack? Hack me back and share it with me on Instagram, Pinterest of by Email!

Happy Hacking!

PS: If you liked this post, check out these posts!