Fluff, The Silent Killer

Processor and HeatsinkFluff can be a PC killer as I recently discovered, but the solution to the problem is straightforward.

As a true geek, I built my own PC, but it’s no speed demon with a mid-range quad-core processor. However, I’d been suffering from intermittent PC shutdowns that would always happen when I was at the PC and never when the PCs was on but not in use. It was very irritating because you’d be right in the middle of something and then you’d be dumped out. I put it down to buggy software.

Last week I started to rip a few DVDs for tablet viewing and every time the PC would shutdown within about 30 seconds of starting the file conversion. At this point I began to think that the processor might be overheating, forcing a shutdown before it was damaged. Upon opening the case, nothing looked particularly out of the ordinary; there was a bit of fluff but nothing you’d think of as being a problem. It was only when I looked more closely at the heat sink on the CPU that I saw many of the spaces between the thermal vanes were clogged with fluff.

Out with the vacuum cleaner and a good hoovering later, I powered the PC on and started a fresh rip. This time the PC didn’t shutdown and I was able to rip solidly for at least an hour without any shutdowns. Problem solved!

Tip of the Day – if you are experiencing intermittent crashes or shutdowns, open your PC and give your CPU’s heatsink and fan a clean with the vacuum cleaner.

And if any Americans out there are wondering what “fluff” is, I believe that you know it as “lint”.

Heatsink and fan picture courtesy of BigStockPhoto.com.

Touchscreen Kleen Review

Fingerprints are the bane of modern life. You’ve got your beautiful new tablet, you show it to your friends and before you can say, “oleic acid”, there’s a horde of greasy smudges all over the screen. Aaargh!!!

Here at Geek News Central we’ve seen several solutions to this problem, from carbon-based wipes to fashion self-cling pads. Touchscreen Kleen adds to the portfolio: it’s a special-formulated spray combined with a microfibre cloth.

TouchscreenKleen Package

It’s pretty simply to use….turn off the screen, squirt some cleaning solution onto the microfibre cloth and polish the screen with the cloth. Job done.
And it really is that easy. I cleaned tablets, smartphones, LCD monitors and they all came up looking like new, completely smudge free. Very impressed.

The microfibre cloth is washable so if you have to clean a really dirty monitor screen, the grubby cloth can be washed before the next use.

Touchscreen Kleen is available in two sizes, 15 ml and 50 ml, currently on special offer at £3.99 and £5.99 respectively in the online store.

Disclosure – Touchscreen Kleen was provided for review by Screen-Kleen Ltd.

Screen Cleaning with Stickems at The Gadget Show

Keep Calm and Drink Tea StickemIf you have a smartphone, tablet or other fingerprint magnet, there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve also got something to clean your screen, whether it’s a microfibre cloth or carbon-based wiper. However, these all suffer from the same problem….you never have it when you want it. Stickems solve this problem by sticking to the back of your phone or tablet, ready for use at anytime.

Coming in a good range of sizes and patterns, Stickems have ultra fine microfibre cloth on one side to clean the screen of dust, fingerprints, ear smudges and make-up, with a self-cling backing on the other side. The Stickem simply peels off for use and sticks back on when done. Prices range from £2.99 to £4.99.

I caught up with Alex from Stickems at The Gadget Show Live and he told me more. I suspect he hasn’t actually wiped 10,000 times and I don’t think there’s really a guarantee….

Keep Your Tablet Clear with the Lenspen SideKick

Lenspen LogoLenspen have a long history of products in the photography market and they’ve brought their expertise of lens cleaning to the mobile gadget space. Their client list reads like a who’s who of the photography market with Nikon, Canon and Sony all producing OEM-branded version of Lenspen’s lens cleaning tools. Todd and Don chat with Peter from Lenspen to get an update on the latest products.

Last year, Lenspen introduced the first SideKick and since then the product line has been expanded with new colours and new packaging. The SideKick is a matchbox-sized sprung-loaded carbon pad that is wiped over the screen and completely removes fingerprints from tablet and smartphone screens. Using a carbon-based technology, the SideKick absorbs oils without any abrasion leaving a perfectly cleaning screen. It then closes up to keep all the carbon inside and one cartridge will do 300-400 cleanings before needing to be replaced. The SideKick is available online and in retail stores from $14.99 for a single SideKick. Other package combinations are available.

Lenspen also has specific cleaning products for LCD monitors and screens, such as the Laptop-Pro, that removes both dust and fingerprints.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central and Don Baine, the Gadget Professor for the TechPodcast Network.

Support our Show Sponsor:
30% off your new order @ GoDaddy: gnc30
1.49 .com New or Renewal geek149
$1.00 / mo WordPress Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: press4
$1.00 / mo Economy Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: geeks12
GoDaddy Promo Codes always save you money, check out my Promo Codes Today

The Lenspen Sidekick

Jeffery Powers and Esbjorn Larsen interviewed Peter Meurrens, VP of Operations for Lenspen, about the Lenspen Sidekick and the Laptop Pro. Do you remember your grandmother using a newspaper to clean a mirror. The reason that worked is because the print on newspapers contains carbon. Carbon absorbs the fingerprint oil .

Lenspen took this concept and created the Lenspen Sidekick. The tip on the Sidekick is made of carbon and when you rub it across the tablet screen it collects the oil from the screen. When you close the unit back up it refills the tip with carbon. There are about 150 cleanings per unit and will last for years when not in use.

He also showed off an improved version of the Lenspen Laptop Pro. This application can clean your entire laptop from the keyboard to the screen. In the center of the application there are two knobs. Slide the one knob forward and the hard brush comes out. You use it to clean the keyboard both on top and underneath the keys, Pull it back and then pull the other knob forward and you have the soft moleskin brush which will remove the dust from the monitor. The cap contains a carbon tip you can use to clean fingerprints from your monitor.

The Sidekick will be available in March at various on-line and local retailers. At this time they are looking at selling the Sidekick plus a supply of cleaning tips for $19.95 The Sidekick only will be available for around $9.95 and blades only for $14.95. The Sidekick uses no chemicals or liquids and because carbon is a natural product and last a long time the Sidekick is very green.  Both Jeffery and Esbjorn really liked this product and thought it was one of the best things they saw at CES 2011.

Interview by Jeffrey Powers of The Geekazine Podcast.
Interview by Esbjorn Larsen of MrNetCast.com.

Please Support our CES 2011 Sponsors.

Save 25% on 4GH Hosting 1yr Subscriptions Save 25% Promo Code CES2.

Moneual Silver Care Robot Air Purifier and Emergency Assistant

Targeted at independent living for older people, Moneual‘s Silver Care Robot is an air purifier that moves around the home to clean the air and improve the air quality, much like a Roomba does for dirt. But the robot also monitors the vital signs of an owner who is wearing wristwatch-type monitor. In the event of emergency, the robot can summon assistance via a wireless internet connection.

Built on Microsoft’s Windows 7 with a touch screen, the user can access simple functions such as playing music or making a voip call.

Available later in 2011 for over $8000.

Interview by Carissa O’Brien for Geek News Central.

Please Support our CES 2011 Sponsors

Get your 14 day Free Trial of Audible Gold to start Listening to great Books!
Save 25% on 4GH Hosting 1yr Subscriptions Save 25% Promo Code CES2.

Lenspen Sidekick for Apple iPhone and iPod

If you hate fingerprints and smudges on your iPhone or other mobile device, then Sidekick from Lenspen is the product you’ve been waiting for. Using a carbon-based technology, it wipes away oil-based marks like fingerprints from flat screens, leaving them clean and shiny.

New at CES and available soon for $9.95

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central.

Please Support our CES 2011 Sponsors

Get your 14 day Free Trial of Audible Gold to start Listening to great Books!
Save 25% on 4GH Hosting 1yr Subscriptions Save 25% Promo Code CES2.