May 2021 News: Last chance for Google Photos free storage, QR codes, Google Lens


  May 2021 | Issue 165  | Archives
April with Jim and Chris – the Geeks

Spring in Florida and Georgia

Becoming Home-bodies

Chris is not known for having a green thumb! But, with all this time at home, she just had to do a little digging and planting. Her favorite thing in the garden though, is this little froggie statue. It’s been there as long as she can remember and it had lost its eyes. She asked Jim to use the 3D printer to make him some new ones and they turned out great! Now, if only he could 3D print some flowering bushes.

Club Presentations

We presented six seminars over zoom during April. The topics included Google Photos, Blogger, Snapseed, and a Hodgepodge of Tech Tips. If you belong to one of the organizations that invited us, you already know about it. For the rest of you, we are listing the classes along with a link to all class materials on our website. And, if you are a teacher, you are welcome to use our materials for your own class. Just go to and click where you see the word “Classes” – it will
take you to this page. It’s quite a resource – check it out!

What Does This Button Do? (YouTube shows)
Apr 25 #211 

Hodgepodge of Tech Tips including Google Lens

Apr 19 Learn Google Photos open Q&A (make sure to use the chapter links in the description – they link to 32 separate questions!)

New Tutorial Videos


What’s coming up – Our Calendar May/June 2021

We’re Presenting LIVE – online and in person!

View the Geeks' online Calendar

Lots of stuff on our calendar this month!
  • May 4, 1:30pm ET – Senior Planet Colorado Hodgepodge of Smartphone Tips (Zoom)
  • May 6 7:30 pm ET – Cajun Clickers Computer Club – upcoming changes in Google Photos (Zoom)June
  • May 9, 2pm ET – Episode 212 of What Does This Button Do?
  • May 9, 3pm ET – Backstage Pass for Members Only Zoom meeting
  • May 17, 3pm ET – Google Photos Live Q&A streaming to Facebook and YouTube. Chris will demo and take questions.
  • May 23, 2pm ET – Episode 213 of What Does This Button Do?
  • May 23, 3pm ET – Backstage Pass for Members Only Zoom meeting
  • May 28, 3pm ET – GOT Member Orientation Zoom Meeting for all Premium Members   
  • ————————————–
  • June 1, 3pm ET Venice Technology User Group Travel apps?
  • June 6, 2pm ET Episode 212 of What Does This Button Do?
  • June 6, 3pm ET – Backstage Pass for Members Only Zoom meeting
  • June 20 2pm ET Episode 213 of What Does This Button Do?
  • June 20, 3pm ET – Backstage Pass for Members Only Zoom meeting
  • June 21, 3pm ET –  Google Photos Live Q&A streaming to Facebook and YouTube. Chris will demo and take questions
Live YouTube Shows Sundays at 2pm Eastern time “The Button Show” 
May 9th and 23rd
June 6th and 20th
Stay safe. Wash your hands. Get vaccinated.

Ask the Geeks

Ask the Geeks Q&A forum.

Anyone can read the forum, only members can ask questions. This is a valuable benefit of membership. Join Today! Here are some recent discussions

  1. YouTube video in Gmail
  2. Google Albums sync in IOS
  3. Printing “Photos”
  4. Email subscription to Blog
  5. Google Maps search along route

Last chance to take advantage of Google Photos’ Free unlimited storage before June 1.


If you use Google Photos, I want you to do something right now. Go to and check your account’s usage. It will look something like the screenshot above. If you see that Google Photos is using up any storage, there is an easy way to reduce that number to 0 by retroactively compressing all photos and videos to the size called “High Quality.”
Recover Storage
The command is called Recover Storage and you will find it on the web version of Google Photos, under the settings button – the gear. Just click Recover Storage, then click Compress. That’s it!
If you don’t see a Recover Storage button, that means that you are already paying for storage, but you can still compress all past photos and videos by clicking back and forth from the Original Quality setting to the High Quality setting. You will be prompted if you want to compress past files, check the box to recover storage then click confirm.
Do this before June 1. Watch the video below if needed.

QR Codes are everywhere

scan qr code

You’re seeing them in restaurants these days. Scan the code to read the menu on your phone. They’re also on business cards, brochures and correspondence. To scan them, all you need to do is point your phone’s camera at the code, then tap the message that pops up.

Google Lens will tell you about the things around you, including translating. 

Google Lens identifies a plant and "googles" it

I bought this plant to put in my back yard garden, but I don’t know if it needs sun or shade. If I knew the name of the plant, I would just google how to care for it, but I have no idea what it is called. This is where Google Lens comes in. You just focus on things in the real world and it will “google it for you.” Imagine being able to “Google it” for anything in the real world as well as online. Are you wondering where your friend bought that cool kitchen
appliance? Just get out your phone with Google Lens, point it at the appliance and you’ll find out. You’ll even get a link for where to buy it. What is this menu item that’s written in Italian? Google Lens can tell you.
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