Category Archives: Blog

Computer Tips for Travelers and anything else that these Geeks feel like writing about will show up here! For additional articles on Picasa, see our separate site PicasaGeeks.com
. For additional articles on Internet Connections on the Road, see our separate site WiFiSavvy.com

159. Organize and Share Google Photos Albums

Everyone can view all the episodes for free. Just click on the play button above.

A great benefit of membership is access to the extensive show-notes Chris writes up every week. Read them online and follow links directly to the parts you’re interested in. We recommend you print them out and keep them in a notebook. It’s a great way to learn.

Not a member? Join here. This episode covers:

  1. Tip of the Day: Results of our Learning Survey
  2. Beginner’s Lesson: Organizing and Sharing Google Photos Albums
  3. App: Google Photos

Download .pdf (you’ll see a dropbox login, but you can just close it – no Dropbox account is needed)
Download entire YouTube video (184MB)

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Google can remind you where you went in 2018

As we travel more and more, remembering where we’ve been gets harder and harder. I take lots of pictures, I make my own maps, and I write in my personal blog. I like documenting my life.

If I just want to remember where all I went last year, Google’s location history is the quickest way to do that. If you have Google Maps set to record your location history, viewing a map of everywhere you’ve been in 2018 is as easy as 1-2-3:

  1. On a computer, go to Maps.Google.com and be sure you are logged in with your Google Account.
  2. Click the 3-line menu in upper left and choose “Your Timeline.”
  3. Click Year to drop down your choices and choose 2018.

That’s all it takes to view this map. To keep it, I just take a screenshot (Windows: use Snipping Tool, New, drag the area; Mac: use CMD-Shift-4 drag the area).

If you don’t see any places, it means your Google Location History has never been turned on. If it is on, and this is the first time you’ve seen your Google Timeline, it may freak you out a bit. It’s so easy to view your location history that you may feel anyone can do it – but they can’t. That is, they can’t see your location history. My map, the one you see above, is a screenshot of what I see after logging in with my Google username and password and verification code. Google does not even give me a way to share this with anyone – only I can see it. If it still freaks you out, you can turn it off. You can also delete what has already been saved. You can delete individual places, or your entire location history. Here is the official

Google help page on managing your location history

2019 Learning Survey

Help us pick our topics for 2019 by rating your interest in these suggestions.
We’ve listed 35 possibilities, don’t fret over each one, just click level 4 or 5 if you’re interested, level 1 or 2 if not. Mark 3 if you have no opinion.
There’s room at the end to tell us about anything else you’d like.
The survey will only take you a couple minutes, please help us pick our topics.

2018 was a good year for old dogs to learn new tricks with technology.

If you think technology is passing you by, Jim and Chris, of Geeks on Tour are here to help.They love to teach, so they pick a topic every week or two and produce a live YouTube show. Below are links to all of the episodes they recorded in 2018. Take a look and see if any topics peak your interest.

If you like the shows, you’ll love the show notes! If the list below looks interesting to you, but you’re not interested in watching 27 episodes of a 45 minute show, then you’ll really appreciate our show notes. If you are a Geeks on Tour member, you can enter your username and password after clicking on any link below and skim thru the notes. There are timeline links throughout the notes where you can click and go to that specific spot in the video. Also, if you are a member, you get an email after every show with a link to the .pdf version of the written notes.

What Does This Button Do? All episodes recorded in 2018

132. Google Photos for Picasa Users
133. Facebook Privacy
134. Scanning photos with Google PhotoScan
135. Copying files from USB _thumb_ drive
136. Editing photos with Snapseed
137. Understanding Accounts
138. Google Photos_upload from computer
139. What are Widgets on Smartphones
140- Facebook Privacy, 5 action items
141. Music on Smartphones
142. Using Snapseed with Google Photos on a Chromebook
143. Scuba Diving videos, Sharing Google Photo
144. Smartphone camera tips
145. Google Photos – Your Questions Answered
146. QR Codes and Smartphones
147. Video Editing on Chromebook with Quik
148. Geeks on Tour Live Seminars – how to learn when you can’t attend
149. Internet and Battery when you’re Off-Grid
150. Using Google Photos to Edit Videos
151. Trip Planning
152. Trip Planning Apps – International
153.Favorite Apps with Eric and Tami of TechnoRV
154. Cellular Boosters
155.Apps-Install Uninstall Organize
156.Scan to PDF
157.Sending photos from phone
158. Choosing a phone case

Is that all?

That list is just our “Button” shows, we also posted over 50 of our short tutorial videos, created new Learning Guides, answered hundreds of questions, and updated Mrs. Geek’s Guide to Google Photos to the second edition.

We also presented live seminars at events all across the country. At 22 events from Las Vegas to Gillette, Wyoming, Sevierville Tennessee, and Tampa Florida we taught 7,500 learners in 55 different seminars. You can see a map of all our stops on our travel maps page.

How to trim your videos on your phone

You don’t want to miss a second of your granddaughter’s graduation ceremony, so you start the video camera rolling as she’s walking up to the stage. Now you wish you hadn’t done that! Nobody wants to watch the 3 minutes of her walking, they just want to see her step onto the stage and get her diploma.

No problem, if you took the video with your phone, you can use most any photo management app to trim the beginning or end of your video.

  1. Google Photos: View the video, tap the Edit button and you will see a white vertical bar on either end of the video, drag them to your desired begin and end point, then tap Save
  2. Samsung Gallery: View the video, tap the scissors icon at top and you should see “Video Trimmer” at top left. At the bottom of the screen, you’ll see the frames of your video with white bares at the beginning and end. Drag those bars to your desired beginning and end points.
  3. Apple iOS Photos: View the video, tap the word Edit, drag the beginning and ending markers to your desired positions.

Now, go take more videos!

To learn more about how to trim a section out of the middle, or how to put together several video clips and still photos to make a movie complete with music. Watch Episode 150 of our Weekly YouTube show What Does This Button Do?

How to let friends and family know where you are at all times

With these smartphone/GPS devices in our pockets all the time, there are now many different ways to share your location. Apple has the “Find my friends” app, Facebook messenger (and many other texting apps) have a button to “Send Location.” If you’re like me and my husband, we like to make it easy and just let each other know where we are at all times. It’s easy with Google Maps.

Maybe you’re a fulltime RVer with kids who worry about you a lot. Rather than calling them every day, you could let them see your position on a map that they could look at as often as they like.

You should still call once in a while, OK?

It’s easy to set this up, assuming your kids are in your contact list, and assuming that they have a @gmail.com address, just open your Google Maps app and be sure you’re signed in, then follow the steps below. If they don’t have a @gmail.com address, then you can get a link to send them.

  1. Tap Menu Menu and then  Location sharing and then Add people Add people.
  2. Choose how long you want to share your location.
  3. Tap Select People.
    • If you’re asked about your contacts, give Google Maps access.
  4. Choose who you want to share with.
  5. Tap Share.

Jim and I share with each other indefinitely, but we could stop at any time. So when I’m going to that special place for his Christmas present and I don’t want him to know 🙂 I can just open Google Maps, tap the 3-line menu, choose Location sharing, tap Jim, and turn it off.

You can also use this when you are traveling to meet someone and you want to give them an ETA. Use Google Maps to navigate to your destination,

  1. After you start navigation, tap More More and then Share trip progress.
  2. Choose a person from the list.
  3. Tap Share.
  4. Location Sharing will stop when you reach your destination or stop navigating.
    • To stop sharing before you arrive, tap More More and then Stop sharing.

This works on either Android or iPhone. You just need to use Google Maps and both you and the person you’re sharing with need a Google Account.

Traffic on Google Maps or Waze

Both Waze and Google maps can give you turn-by-turn voice directed navigation. Waze also adds real-time crowdsourced road information including traffic, road hazards and police locations. I’ve had people tell me that they prefer Waze to Google Maps because Waze gives information about traffic.

Hey! So does Google Maps.

When Google Maps is navigating, it automatically shows traffic slowdowns along your route: yellow means a noticeable amount of traffic, red means delays caused by traffic.

Google Maps has Lane Guidance

I prefer Google Maps to Waze for many reasons, but lane guidance is probably the most important. When I’m coming up on a turn, I will hear Waze voice saying, “In a quarter mile turn left.” Where Google Maps will say, “In a quarter mile use the left two lanes to turn left onto the Northbound I-95 ramp.” If you need to be in the middle lane, or the lane that is second from the right, it will tell you that as well.  

Turn on Traffic Layer

Using Google Maps, if you want to see traffic on the roads without navigating, you can turn on the traffic layer. Just tap the layer button in the upper right of the map, then choose Traffic from the choices. Be aware that traffic information uses more data. That’s why you have the option to have it on or off.

156. How To Use a Smartphone to Scan and Create PDF Documents.

Show Notes for Members below

Everyone can view all the episodes for free. Just click on the play button above.

A great benefit of membership is access to the extensive show-notes Chris writes up every week. Read them online and follow links directly to the parts you’re interested in. We recommend you print them out and keep them in a notebook. It’s a great way to learn.

Not a member? Join here. This episode covers:

  1. Tip of the Day: Google Photos – search
  2. Beginner’s Lesson: Scan documents to .PDF
  3. App: CamScanner

Continue reading →

RV-Planning: Honey, tell me where to go

Chris’ article about planning RV trips is being published in the Family RVing Magazine in the January 2019 issue. In case you’re reading the print version, we’re listing all the links here so you can click on them. We also welcome comments here.

The article starts by listing 5 steps and a favorite tool or two for each step.

  1. Research: Roadtrippers.com
  2. Plan: RVParky.com
  3. Navigate: Google Maps for Android, Google Maps for Apple iOS
  4. Sleep: Allstays.com, Allstays app for Apple iOS, HarvestHosts.com
  5. Remember: Google My Maps

Throughout the article, there are a few other websites or products mentioned. Here are links to them:

Chris also mentions the maps of their travels. To see those maps, go to the Maps page of Geeks on Tour’s travel blog. Be sure to scroll down because there is a map for every year of their RV travels, from 2004 thru 2018.

If you’d like to learn how to make those maps yourself, start by watching this tutorial video, then a portion of our weekly class on Youtube, episode 111.

To learn more, you can become a Geeks on Tour member which gives you access to a complete Learning Guide on map-making with Google My Maps