It’s Clean Out Your Computer Day

It’s not very widely known, but Feb. 10 is Clean Out Your Computer Day. As its name suggests, it’s a day to review and delete your old files, programs and apps. Not only can this be for your computer, but consider this for all your electronic devices. Most of us are guilty of adding programs and files to our devices without a second thought and letting them sit there forever. This is a huge drawback, because it can clog your memory and cause slower retrieval of other files/programs.

I am completely guilty – I have more than 6,500 pictures and videos on my phone that need to be cleared off. It’s so full that I can’t take any new pictures, videos or install any new apps!

The clean-out process can be overwhelming, but perhaps start with your email and go through your junk mail and contact list. Then move onto your old, outdated files, bookmarks in your browser and clear out your downloads folder. Also, uninstall programs and apps you no longer need or want and delete those shortcuts off your desktop.

And the final touch: Back up your device and restart it! By taking an hour or so to do this with each device you have, you’ll feel much better, not to mention your machine will run faster and more efficiently, saving you more time in the long run.

On a similar note, if you have an old PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360 you want to get rid of, and are thinking of purchasing an Xbox One console, the Microsoft Store at Ala Moana Center will give you a trade-in value of $100 toward the purchase of an Xbox One console! Visit for more details.

Apps for Punahou Carnival

The ever-popular Punahou Carnival is right on the horizon – Feb. 7-8 – and this year it’s turning high tech. The school’s AP computer science class took up app development for the carnival’s popular Sound Booth and updated the iCarnival app. As you may know, the Sound Booth is a popular attraction for the carnival. You take your scrips up to the booth, and request your announcements to be made over the loudspeaker.

At the Honolulu New Tech Meetup at The Fix Jan 29 were (from left) Nathan Wallace, Douglas Kiang, Alexander Chai and Mark Klein Photo courtesy Douglas Kiang

At the Honolulu New Tech Meetup at The Fix Jan 29 were (from left) Nathan Wallace, Douglas Kiang, Alexander Chai and Mark Klein
Photo courtesy Douglas Kiang

According to Punahou computer science teacher Douglas Kiang, a fellow teacher and student noted that there was just way too much paper being wasted on the Sound Booth every year at the carnival. Hence, the Sound Booth app (Google) was born. It’s the brainchild of Punahou sophomore Mark Klein. As a part of the AP computer science class, Klein took it on as a challenge to see how he could take the Sound Booth process to the next level. The app allows you to submit messages through it, but you still need to pay for your messages via script at the physical booth. The app collects the messages with a PHP database and they are saved to a central location, where volunteers working at the booth can read them off a tablet. Future renditions of the app may include an in-app purchase (e.g., 99 cents) to purchase. The talented Klein also won a Google coding contest and will be pitching the idea at the next Blue Startups meeting.

The second app being featured at Punahou Carnival is an updated version of iCarnival. This app helps you keep track of your scripts, remember where you parked your car and connects you to a live feed of carnival updates. This year’s students added the capability of Twitter feeds. Kiang says that it’s al ways interesting to see what the kids come up with every year, since they graduate and move on. He also notes that you actually can get great parking on campus when the parking gates open up. iCarnival will notify you when that happens.

Personally, I’m looking forward to the malasadas at the carnival!