Tedium

DIY

The PC of Your Dreams Might be Hiding in a Company’s Surplus Bin

The charm of buying old workstation hardware on the cheap to support your modern computing needs. If it doesn’t work for them, it might just work for you.
Ernie Smith
6.6.19
Tedium

Is Adobe’s Creative Cloud Too Powerful for Its Own Good?

Why the creative software giant Adobe deserves a place in the broader discussion of breaking up tech giants like Facebook and Google. It’s not just Photoshop.
Ernie Smith
3.18.19
Tedium

The Joystick Artisan

From the arcades to the living room, how the controller has evolved—and why one tech historian, Benj Edwards, started building his own.
Ernie Smith
2.25.19
Tedium

Are Hackintosh Users More Passionate About the Mac Than Apple?

The Hackintosh has become a phenomenon in recent years, despite knotty ethical questions, because Apple’s neglected superfans won’t stop thinking different.
Ernie Smith
2.19.19
Tedium

Close Your Browser Tabs. You Won’t Miss Them.

A case in favor of browser tab minimalism, or closing the tabs you’re not using. Sometimes, information overload has its limits.
Ernie Smith
9.14.18
Tedium

How Robotic Arms Defined the Industrial Revolution

The evolution of the robotic arm, a product invented in the US that came to define modern factories around the world. It wasn't an easy sell in America.
Ernie Smith
6.18.18
Tedium

The First Portable Computers Were the Size of an RV

Why the first 'portable' computers, produced before integrated circuits, would really stretch the term today. Some portables needed a truck to move.
Ernie Smith
6.12.18
Tedium

How the Clapper Came to Define Modern Home Automation

The Clapper was in the same category—and owned by the same guy—as the Chia Pet. Nonetheless, the somewhat primitive device introduced millions of people to the idea of simple home automation. Would we have Alexa without it?
Ernie Smith
5.21.18
Tedium

The Art of Soldering

The story of solder, the unsung hero of the digital revolution that benefits from a low melting point. It’s what keeps the circuits attached to the silicon.
Ernie Smith
4.13.18
Tedium

The Real Industry Behind Fake Electronics

The history of the fake electronics that you sometimes see in furniture stores or in houses for sale. No, that 60-inch flat-screen TV doesn’t turn on.
Ernie Smith
4.11.18
Tedium

How Did Our Default Ringtones Become So Grating?

The evolution of the modern cell phone ringtone—and the Ukrainian guy who wants to give Apple’s default noises a refresh.
Ernie Smith
3.15.18
Tedium

The Military-Industrial Complex Roots of GPS

The evolution of the global positioning system, the greatest non-internet idea to come out of the Space Race, and why the military initially hobbled it.
Ernie Smith
3.13.18
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