6 technology hacks that will change your life

High tech gadgets cost so much, sometimes it seems they're more trouble than they're worth. Luckily, a creative few out there have come up with technology hacks that will save all of us a little time and money.

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  • Do you remember the excitement you felt when you held your first smart phone? These high tech devices aren't just convenient, they've become status symbols among family, friends and co-workers. However, they have a tendency of breaking, running out of batteries or getting lost just when we need them the most. That's why these technology hacks I've compiled will change your life. Here are the top 5 apps for moms of elementary school kids.

  • Protect your charge cord

  • These oh-so-necessary technological implements should be made of stainless steel and come with beepers, blinking lights and a button we can push to locate them when they're lost. Sadly, they have none of those things, but you can extend their lives by sacrificing a clicking pen. Twist apart the pen and save the spring, then string it all the way up your charging cord and dab a little hot glue or super glue on to hold it so it's touching the charging end of your cord. Say goodbye to worn plastic and exposed wires forever.

  • Make your own speakers

  • A good set of speakers can be expensive, so why sacrifice your paycheck when all you need is a toilet paper roll and two solo cups? Cut a slit just wide enough for your phone in the middle of the roll. (Tape that cardboard to the back of the roll to use as a kickstand to hold it up right.) Cut one hole into each solo cup that matches the diameter of the toilet paper roll. Insert an end of the roll into each cup. You're done. Turn on your favorite tunes, set your phone into its slot, and prepare to be amazed.

  • Disguise your valuables at the beach

  • This hack can be used for more than just your cellular device, it also comes in handy for storing your keys and wallet. Clean out an old lotion bottle big enough to hold your valuables and keep them in there when you have to leave your beach towel unattended. Here's a picture so you can visualize how it works.

  • Go jogging with your music

  • There are fancy armbands for holding your phone on your arm when you go jogging, but why spend the money when you could just recycle a pair of old socks? Cut off the foot of the sock so you have a band and slip it up your arm until it fits snugly on your bicep. You now have a handy dandy jogging band. For more security, use a tall pair of socks (like soccer socks) and fold them in half on your arm with the opening at the top so your phone can't slip out the bottom.

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  • Find free Wi-Fi

  • It's getting easier all the time to find free Wi-Fi if you've almost used up your data plan, don't have service or need Internet for your laptop and can't connect to your phone. Most Best Buys, McDonald's and Starbucks, for instance, purportedly have free Wi-Fi access for customers. There are lots of other places too, just look for the "free Wi-Fi" sign or ask a cashier. Some places will give you the password if you ask for it. Some places to look for free Wi-Fi include the library, car dealerships, the local courthouse, fast food restaurants, museums, bookstores, the gym, the train and some public parks.

  • Access maps anywhere

  • No longer fear international data fees when traveling beyond your home nation. Google maps has a feature that allows you to access maps without the need of data or cell service. Just open the app and type "ok maps" into the search bar. It will give you the most recently uploaded road map of the area and allow you to save it if you so desire. This would work anywhere in your home country as well, so keep this in mind on your next camping or hiking trip.

  • Technology has made our lives easier, but simultaneously added complications (sometimes known as "first world problems"). Use these tech hacks the next time you're in a bind and love your devices all the more. Just don't compare your appreciation for them with your significant other. He or she might take offense. Here are 5 incredibly addictive game apps for keeping bored kids busy.

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Katie Nielsen received her bachelor's in English with an emphasis in technical writing. She has taught English and is a published writer.

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