Andrea

About Andrea

About Andrea

Andrea Eldridge is CEO and co-founder of Nerds On Call, an on-site computer and electronics repair service for homes and businesses. Andrea established the company with her husband, Ryan, from a...Read More »

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  • Top Three Easy Smart Home Upgrades
    Top Three Easy Smart Home Upgrades
    Smart home technology offers ways to make your home more state-of-the-art than the Jetsons' abode. They can offer better energy efficiency, innovative security systems and a myriad of added conveniences to your living space. The multitude of choices can be quite overwhelming: where should you begin when exploring ways to make your home more "connected?" Here are three easy and inexpensive options for bringing your home into the next generation. If you've ever set the thermostat down to its "crisp and cool” setting and then kicked yourself for forgetting to turn it up before walking out the door for work, consider installing a smart thermostat. A learning thermostat can save you money on heating and cooling while making your home more comfortable. Automatic, intuitive adjustments can mean your thermostat eventually keeps itself under control. The Honeywell Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat with Voice Control ($255, available on Amazon.com) offers voice activation which allows you to say "Hello, thermostat. I'm hot." Upon hearing your distress call, it adjusts the temperature automatically, working even if you're several feet away. A responsive touch screen gives you quick control, as well a wealth of information on the digital display, such as date and time, outside and indoor temperatures and the percent humidity in your home. It's a "learning" thermostat, so it memorizes your patterns and tries to automatically adjust for them. Download their mobile application ... Read More
  • Celebrity Photo Hack – Is Your Data Safe?
    Celebrity Photo Hack – Is Your Data Safe?

    Unless you spent Labor Day and the week following on a Zen, digital media blackout, you’ve probably caught wind of a huge leak of hacked celebrity nude photos. Early reports blamed an iCloud breach, leaving many wondering if their own photos and files are vulnerable. Here’s how to keep yourself and your personal data safer – not safe, but safer – online. When hundreds of nude photos of celebrities like Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton first surfaced on anonymous photo sharing sites 4Chan and AnonIB over the weekend, the initial concern was that someone had hacked into iCloud. The sheer […]

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  • Apps for Health and Wellness
    Apps for Health and Wellness

    Our handy smartphones improve our lives in so many ways, from providing a source of entertainment to keeping us conveniently connected with loved ones and driving us to be punctual for our myriad of appointments throughout the week. Armed with a few handy apps, your smartphone could even help you to improve your health, wellness and general state of mind. I went on a wellness field trip without leaving home to check out some of the many health and wellness apps on the market. Here are a few of my favorites. Happify promises to “increase your happiness with real, life-changing […]

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  • Amazon Kindle Unlimited Can’t Beat the Public Library
    Amazon Kindle Unlimited Can’t Beat the Public Library

    As a reader of three or four novels a month, purchased primarily through my Kindle Fire, I am always looking to save money on book purchases. When I heard about Amazon Kindle Unlimited, a $9.99/month service allowing you to borrow all the books you wish in a month, keep them as long as you like, and then return them when you’re done, it sounded like a smokin’ hot deal. Is it worth the hype? Not really. Here’s what I found out. I’ll start with the good things about the program – or at least the parts that got me to […]

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  • Finding Tech Bargains
    Finding Tech Bargains

    As a self-professed Nerd and spouse of a gadget junkie, I can attest to one thing: technology is expensive. Now that many back-to-school lists include computers, mobile devices or parts to rehab an ailing family PC, the fall has become a good time to find tech bargains since stores compete to get your business. You can save a few bucks, if you know some “insider” tips. 1. Comparison shop. There are some great bargain consolidation sites that gather all the best deals from across the Internet and post them in one place. Even if you have your heart set on […]

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  • Three Free Programs Every Windows PC Should Have
    Three Free Programs Every Windows PC Should Have

    You probably already know how important it is to have virus and malware protection on any computer that gets on the Internet, but with so many options it can be difficult to know what you need, and it’s easy to overpay. Here are three free programs that every Windows PC should have installed to stay safe and run smoothly. Microsoft Security Essentials is a free antivirus program that comes pre-installed on Windows 8 machines and is available for download here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security-essentials-download. It’s compatible with older versions of Windows, including Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7. Once you install the program, […]

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  • Hiding from Social Media
    Hiding from Social Media

    Social media can be great: funny posts from your best friend about her new job antics, keeping up with your nephews in Des Moines, and impromptu get togethers – “John just posted he’s at Starbucks. Let’s go meet up!” But what about when you’d rather NOT be found by your Facebook followers? Or when you want to cut ties with someone you’ve purged from your life but they’re still ingrained in your Facebook history? It turns out, there’s an app for that. Location-based social-media sites like Foursquare and Social Radar are designed to make it easier to connect with your […]

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  • New PC Must-Do Checklist
    New PC Must-Do Checklist

    Whether your reliable old PC was finally beaten down by the kids this summer, or you are springing for a new laptop for your back-to-schooler, ‘tis the season of new computers. Before you plug and play that new PC, take these steps to ensure your computer runs optimally from the beginning and to protect your investment for years to come. Step 1: Get rid of the junk programs. Anyone who has booted up a new, off-the-shelf Windows PC can attest to the deluge of junk programs that come pre-installed to the average Dell or HP machine. Widely known as “bloatware,” […]

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  • Back to School Tech
    Back to School Tech

    As a new school year rapidly approaches, parents everywhere are pondering, “What tech tools do my kids really need to succeed?” Here’s a rundown of the most helpful computer and gadget choices for every age of student. College Co-Ed: When it comes to outfitting your college-bound kiddo, it’s all about reliable mobility. The most useful tool for any college student is a lightweight laptop. While a smaller screen usually corresponds with a lighter device, you want to be sure that the keyboard and screen are large enough to accommodate the strain of spending long, sleepless nights typing out a thesis […]

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  • How to Get Better Tech Support
    How to Get Better Tech Support

    Despite my “Nerd Chick” credentials, I’ve had to call technical support many times in my life, and I can’t say that it’s always been a pleasant experience. Over the years, I’ve discovered a few things that can make the experience less painful. The next time you need to make that call, here are some ways to assure it’ll go more smoothly. Computers, routers, printers and, frankly, most electronic devices, can get buggy after long periods of use without a break. It never hurts to do a full system shut down and restart to see if that fixes the problem before […]

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