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#879: A Petabyte on a DVD, Food/Water Accidental Damages, Remote Consulting



I have been sitting inside trying to keep cool while we go through this scorcher of a week. It’s times like this I wish I had invested in an air conditioner. Yesterday I was reading an article, while being surrounded by my legion of small fans, about a new rumor for the Apple TV service. Now if you haven’t heard this rumor before, there are reports that Apple is trying to start its own TV service that would work with the provider you have for cable today.

The point of the rumor though wasn’t details on the tech or the if they would bring in a TV platform to incorporate it, it was on the removal of ads from the service. Apparently, Apple wants to have a fee that you could pay, sort of like a subscription, that would allow you to watch your cable TV through the Apple service commercial free. Not sure how this would happen other than Apple paying the fees that come with that, but I am very interested in the by-product.

Anyway, we got a great issue of Tech Tails for you this Tuesday! We have some very interesting info on DVDs by our own Sherry Fuqua, food and accidental damage info from Kyle Simpkins that we can all relate to, and some valuable info on our remote consultation services here at Small Dog with Michael Duplessis.

Stay cool everyone!


  A Petabyte on a DVD  

According to a recent article on Science Daily (one of my favorite retreats for reviews on journal articles from physics and computer science to sociology and psychology), a “full 90% of all the data in the world has been generated over the last two years.” This truly is amazing information.

Apparently, this comes as a direct result from “big data” research centers at organizations like Google and Facebook. These companies process a staggering amount of data while amassing and analyzing meta data on what we’re doing and looking for.

As you may or may not know a standard DVD (not Blu-ray) holds 4.7 GB of data. Scientists have recently shown this can be increased to a Petabyte, or 1,000 TBs on a single DVD. In its simplest terms the researchers humpbacked two laser beams in what they call “electron beam lithography,” which in effect allowed for 3D writing. The technology allows for the writing of information on a nanoscale never before achieved.

“The technique is also cost-effective and portable, as only conventional optical and laser elements are used, and allows for the development of optical data storage with long life and low energy consumption, which could be an ideal platform for a Big Data center.”

Aside from DVDs, it will undoubtedly have impacts on all forms of storage and processing. Is this the way of the future? What do you think will become of Blu-ray discs? I would love to hear what our readers think of yet another potential shift in the medium for which we store our data.

  Food/Water Accidental Damages  

Food + your computer is not a good combination. Looking at computers coming into the tech department covered in crumbs with splattered food covering the display and keyboard, we think to ourselves, “it was only a matter of time.”

We get machines in here that have had milk, tea, water, beer, wine, and food spilled all over causing shorts and corrosion on all the internals effectively killing the computer. Any kind of food and or liquid spill on a machine is, nine times out of ten, fatal for the computer.

Computers have become such an everyday item for people that we typically don’t think twice about eating or drinking near them, until the accident happens and that expensive machine is going to require an expensive repair. I myself have fallen prey to this false sense of security of being able to eat and operate near my machine only to have my college work go up in literal smoke. Yes, my machine sparked and smoked itself to death.

Luckily, I managed to get my data extracted from the hard drives but there was a good three week period where I wasn’t able to work in my dorm room. Since this incident, I have been much more careful.

There are a couple measures to take in the event of a liquid spill. If the machine is still on, immediately turn it off as quickly as you can without jarring the liquid around. Place in a warm dry area, devoid of power, for a couple days. Some people say to place the machine in rice to draw out the moisture, but I am skeptical of this measure only because the rice can get into the machine and cause mold to grow as well as jam up your ports (I have seen both happen).

However, the most important thing is … DO NOT POWER THE MACHINE ON. Once dry you should have it looked at by a technician or repair center (like Small Dog Electronics).

Ed. noteRebecca K. also suggests you should tent your laptop by leaving the display open at a 30 degree angle or so and place the laptop on its front edges so that it looks like a tent so to speak. This will, with any luck, keep liquid from coming in contact with components while drying.

Just because the machine was running while it was soaked doesn’t mean that it will continue to do so. Once the liquid drips to the logic board, the machine will die as surely as running it through with a knife. The safest measure you can take is to not eat near your computer, and to keep liquids secure and away so as to not cause that costly repair.

  Remote Consulting  

As a regular reader of Tech Tails, you are likely aware that we the employees of Small Dog Electronics are amongst the most knowledgable Mac and iOS experts in the world. We would say that we are in fact the very best, but since we are Small Dogs and not alpha dogs, our modesty prevents it. If you were to call us the best, though, we would certainly accept the compliment!

Each week we bring you tips and tricks to get the most out of your devices. What if the topic you are wondering about is not covered, though? What if you have a question that needs answering or a problem that needs solving and you need help sooner rather than later? Our local customers have always had direct access to us for in-store lessons or house calls from one of our Consultants. If you don’t live near us, or even if you do, we have a great service available: Remote Consulting.

Thanks to the magic of Go To Meeting we are able to remotely log in to your machine and see exactly what is going on. We can temporarily take control of your machine and teach, troubleshoot, and provide technical support . If you have high speed internet (DSL, cable, satellite, or 4G) then you can take advantage of this incredibly convenient service.

Remote consultations are normally $49 per half hour, but if you are a first time remote consulting customer, then tell us “I heard about it in Tech Tails” and we will give you the first half hour for just $39!

To book a consultation, please give us a call at 888-746-9816 or send an email to

  SPECIAL | Brand New 2TB Time Capsule from Apple  

The Lowest Priced Time Capsule Around!


Who really wants to spend $300+ on an external hard drive and a Wi-Fi router when you can buy them together for the low price of $239.99?

Two terabyte hard drives can retail for at least $100, and when you add in Apple’s AirPort Extreme, you are looking at $280 at a minimum. Not to mention that a current generation 2TB Time Capsule goes for $299.99.

This is your chance to grab a great deal on a brand new (still in the wrapping) 2TB 2nd generation Time Capsule for just $239.99. Act fast before they’re gone for good!


  SPECIAL | Special Edition 13in MacBook Air  

The Lowest Priced MacBook Air We Have!


Small Dog definitely got lucky with this one and we are unable to contain our excitement.

We now have brand new 13-inch MacBook Airs both online and in-store that were only released to educational institutes. These MacBook Air models have a 64GB solid state drive and are made specifically to give the most performance combined with portability.

At a price that is simply unbeatable, this is tied for the lowest-priced brand new Mac that we sell! Only $699.99 this deal is simply unbeatable and a great buy for any students on their way to school.