Brian Fagioli

Democrats vs Republicans: Watch live 2018 Midterm Election results for free on YouTube

Today is a very important day in the United States -- Election Day! Yes, across this great nation, citizens will be casting votes for all sorts of things, such as senators, governors, and various initiatives. Make no mistake, however, just like in 2016, the 2018 elections are all about Donald Trump. We will see whether the country approves or disapproves of the president's performance based on tonight's results. In other words, if the fabled "blue wave" comes to fruition -- meaning Democrats win a lot of seats -- it could prove disastrous for Trump's legacy and possible re-election hopes.

In my area of Long Island, the polls opened at 6am, and I was the second person to vote -- only one gentleman was there before me. In other words, I was passionate and eager to make my voice heard, so I got there very early. There are expectations that I am not alone in my excitement -- many are predicting a huge turnout this year. Later tonight, it will be fun to tune into TV to watch the results announced live, but if you will be away from home do not panic -- there will be plenty of live coverage on YouTube.

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Happy 15th Birthday, Fedora Linux!

Fedora is the best desktop Linux distribution for many reasons. Not only is it fast and reliable, but it is constantly kept up to date with fairly bleeding edge packages. Not to mention, it uses the greatest desktop environment, GNOME, by default. Most importantly, it respects and follows open source ideology. It is a pure Linux and FOSS experience that is an absolute joy to use. It's no wonder Linus Torvalds -- the father of Linux -- chooses it.

With all of that said, Fedora didn't get great overnight. It took years of evolution to become the exceptional operating system it is now. In fact, today, we celebrate the Linux distribution's 15th birthday! Yes, it was way back in 2003 when Fedora Core 1 was released to the world, forever changing the course of history for the better.

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Barnes and Noble announces a new Android-powered NOOK Tablet for the holidays

If you like to read books, an Amazon Kindle e-reader is a wise purchase. After all, they use e-ink technology which is easy on the eyes while offering very long battery life. Unfortunately, not everyone can afford a device dedicated to reading. For many, a traditional tablet -- such as an iPad -- serves as both an e-reader and a general use slate.

Barnes and Noble sells e-ink readers, but also, it offers NOOK Tablets powered by Android. These are superior to Amazon's Fire tablets, as NOOK has Google Play support. In other words, Barnes and Noble's tablets have access to all the popular apps you will want. Today, timed perfectly for the upcoming holiday shopping season, Barnes and Noble announces its latest tablet. This new NOOK Tablet has a big 10.1-inch screen. In addition to being a consumption device, the company apparently thinks it can be used for productivity -- it will sell an optional keyboard cover for it.

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Amazon gives free shipping to all this holiday season -- no minimums or Prime required

Earlier this year, I was on the fence about renewing my Amazon Prime account. Don't get me wrong, it's a great value, but I have been on a quest to save money. Then life happened, and I totally forgot about the upcoming Prime decision. In August, the service auto-renewed, and rather than fight for a refund, I decided to just keep it. Why? Well, besides enjoying the streaming video service, I love the "free" shipping aspect. I justified it by telling myself that with the holidays soon approaching, I would be thankful to have Prime for gift buying.

Well, today I feel sort of like a fool. You see, Amazon announces that all shoppers will get free shipping with no minimum dollar amount required. In other words, one of the biggest perks of Prime service -- not needing to spend at least $25 for free shipping -- is just being given away to all.

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Apple iPhone 5G is coming! In 2020...

5g smartphone

Ultra-fast 5G wireless is going to change the world... eventually. It won't just disrupt the mobile ISP business, but home internet as well. Throughout 2019, I fully expect consumers to be bombarded with 5G marketing that will sell it as the next big thing. And yes, the new standard will be pretty great, but it is not yet necessary. You see, the 5G infrastructure is not yet ubiquitous, and it won't be for a long while. So while there will probably be Android phones with high-speed 5G modems in 2019, owners largely won't have any way to take advantage of it.

According to a new report from Fast Company, Apple will be sitting out the 2019 5G shenanigans, instead waiting for at least 2020 to launch the iPhone 5G. You know what? That is very wise. The fruit-logo company is seemingly opting to wait until 5G is worthwhile and not merely a marketing tool.

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System76 Thelio computer is open source, Linux-powered, and made in the USA

I love when products are made in the USA. Don't get me wrong, I am not against things made in other countries. Hell, it is virtually impossible to live in America and not buy foreign goods. If you look at the tags on your clothes, you will almost never see "Made in the USA." But still, I take pride when a product is made here. For instance, so far in my life, I have only ever owned Ford vehicles. With that said, Ford is moving more and more of its labor to Mexico, but I digress.

Computers made in America are virtually non-existent, but a little company in Denver had a dream to do just that. System76 has long been looking to make a Linux-powered computer in the USA using open source ideology. A lofty goal, which many folks didn't think would ever be achieved. Well, against all odds, today, System76 proves the haters wrong as it finally unveils its much-anticipated Thelio desktop computer. And boy, oh boy, it is beautiful.

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AOC launches C32V1Q 32-inch curved monitor

AOC monitors are a favorite of mine. While they may not be the top of the line, these reliable displays offer a lot of "bang for your buck." In other words, they are budget-friendly, allowing you to save money. If you are a system builder, you know that money saved on a display can be used towards PC components, such as RAM, storage, etc.

If you want one of those fancy new curved monitors, today, AOC launches a new model. The C32V1Q, as it is called, features a 32-inch screen. While a big display is appreciated, please know, the resolution is just 1080p. While that should be OK for gaming, you might experience blurry text during general use. Personally, I don't like to exceed 24-inch with 1080p, but ultimately, the consumer needs to make that decision.

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Microsoft Office for macOS getting dark mode

One of the coolest new features of macOS Mojave is dark mode. As the name implies, it quite literally allows the user to make a system-wide switch to a darker interface. It works quite well, but unfortunately, app developers have to take advantage of it in their code -- their programs will not support dark mode by default. This means that even when you turn dark mode on, some apps will look out of place. Yeah, that inconsistency kind of stinks, but luckily, many developers -- not all -- have been updating their software to support the feature.

One huge app in particular is still not updated -- Microsoft Office. Regardless of what you think of the Windows-maker, it cannot be denied that Office is outstanding. It is still the best office suite after all these years. On macOS Mojave and later, it will be getting even better, as Microsoft is planning to introduce dark mode to Office at some point in the future. As is typical with the company, the feature will first be given to "Insiders" (aka free beta testers).

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Fedora 29 Linux distribution now available for download

Two days ago, it was announced that IBM will be buying Red Hat. While we don't know how the marriage between the two companies will work out, I am cautiously optimistic. I mean, look, Red Hat is a solid organization, and if IBM is true to its word about allowing the RHEL-maker to operate independently, it should largely be a non-issue.

Personally, as a hardcore Fedora user, I can only pray that IBM doesn't mess with my favorite operating system. The acquisition won't be closing for a while, however, and today, after a short public beta period, Fedora 29 is released without any input from IBM. The best desktop Linux operating system simply gets better than ever, and it is time to celebrate by downloading it.

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Linux Mint 19.1 'Tessa' coming this Christmas

December is coming, which means one of my favorite holidays, Christmas, is fairly imminent. While I enjoy spending time with family to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, I’d be lying if I said I don’t like getting presents. Heck, I really enjoy giving gifts too.

Not all Christmas gifts need to be physical -- sometimes a Linux distribution can be equally rewarding! Case in point, today, we learn Linux Mint 19.1 -- which is named "Tessa" -- will be released around Christmastime. In addition, the Mint developers have launched an official Patreon account as a new way to get funding from users. More importantly, there are some significant upcoming improvements to the Cinnamon desktop environment.

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Dear Apple, I don't need a fancy iPad Pro for sitting on the toilet

Apple makes very elegant products that help people get work done every day. As an example, my MacBook Pro and iPhone are what I often use to both be creative and keep in contact with friends, family, and colleagues. My iPad is a different story though. I'm not going to beat around the bush here, folks -- I frequently use it while going "number two."

Look, if I am going to be sitting on the toilet for a while, I take my 2017 iPad with me for surfing the web, watching videos, listening to music, playing casual games, and checking social media. Before you look at me with disgust, let's be honest, you probably bring a tablet into the bathroom too. It's time Apple acknowledges this fact and gives us redesigned iPads that focus on consumption. The current non-Pro iPad is simply too big, thick, and heavy.

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Sony announces the full PlayStation Classic game list, and it is insanely impressive

When Nintendo experienced huge success with its NES Classic Edition, many people in the video game industry were caught off guard. It shouldn't have been a surprise, however, as nostalgia sells. People simply love reliving their youth. We are all guilty of fondly remembering the commercialism of our childhood, and putting certain things -- like a video game console -- on a pedestal.

Sony was wise to follow Nintendo's lead with the upcoming mini PlayStation Classic, as many consumers that had the console as children are now adults with disposable income. Unfortunately, Sony did not share the full list of pre-loaded games, only revealing a fraction of the 20 promised titles. Today this changes, as the PlayStation-maker reveals the full list. And quite frankly, the list looks incredible.

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IBM gobbles up open source and Linux darling Red Hat in $34 billion deal

Red Hat Inc. is a great example of how a company can be successful with open source. Hell, Red hat is a billion dollar company -- yes, billion with a "B." Its contributions to the Linux community are invaluable -- RHEL, CentOS, and Fedora are important and indispensable.

That's why I'm a bit scared today. You see, International Business Machines has acquired the open source darling, Red Hat. I suppose IBM could be a great Red Hat owner from a financial standpoint, but IBM's leadership has been questionable over the years. I'm sure I am not alone is fearing that IBM could ultimately ruin Red Hat and its offerings. With that said, IBM has long been an open source proponent, so maybe it will work out well.

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Linux-friendly company System76 shares more open source Thelio computer details

System76 has been making big news in the Linux community lately with its upcoming open source Thelio computer. Many Linux users have been clamoring for System76 to make its own hardware, and that dream will soon be a reality.

Unfortunately, not much is known about Thelio hardware other than it is definitely a desktop computer that is built with open source ideology. Today, however, System76 shares new details and images about the computer with those that signed up for its email list. Probably the most exciting is the promise of an open source "daughter board" that will apparently strip the proprietary aspects from a typical motherboard -- this has me seriously intrigued.

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Corsair launches K70 RGB MK.2 LOW PROFILE mechanical gaming keyboards

I'm a huge fan of mechanical keyboards. While they are great for gaming, I find they are quite brilliant for general use too. Nothing makes me happier than typing away on a quality keyboard, and mechanical keyswitches often feel very premium.

My one complaint about mechanical keyboards is the height. It can be hard to get my arms/shoulders comfortable when the keyboard ands its keys are too high/thick -- a problem I don't have with Apple's non-mechanical -- yet very slim -- desktop keyboard. Today, Corsair announces two new keyboards that aim to help with this issue. You see, as the name implies, the new K70 RGB MK.2 LOW PROFILE mechanical gaming keyboards have -- you guessed it -- low profile switches and RGB lighting!

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