Here is the latest Personal Tech News from The New York Times.
Critic’s Notebook: A Celebrity Z-List? Yes, It Exists
As the gossip machine continues to define celebrity downward, a striving celebrity underclass has risen to dominate it.
Front Row: This Fashion Week, Google Gets a New Look
The latest tech giant to woo the fashion world isn’t a social network. It’s a search engine.
Tech Tip: Turn Your Phone Into an Early Warning System
Mobile alerts and free tools can notify you and help you prepare for emergencies including extreme weather, natural disasters and other crisis situations.
Letter of Recommendation: Letter of Recommendation: The Useless Machine
An executive toy that’s more like a battery-operated koan about humans and technology.
Tech Tip: Are the Free Wi-Fi Kiosks on New York Streets Safe?
Like other urban areas, New York City has free internet hot spots around town that can give you web access. But as always, be careful.
Tech Tip: Transforming Paper Business Cards Into Digital Contacts
Beaming contacts is a modern way of exchanging information, but you can also convert those cardboard rectangles into handy electronic files.
Tech Tip: A Few Reasons Your Phone Isn’t Getting the Update
As Google and Apple improve their mobile operating systems each year, older phone hardware cannot keep up with the new software.
Tech Tip: Restoring That Email You Just Deleted Accidentally
If you mistakenly dump an important piece of mail in the trash, don’t panic.
App Smart: Looking for a New Job? These Free Apps Can Help
There are several good options available to make the job hunt easier and quicker, including Indeed, Switch and Monster.
Video Games Allow Characters More Varied Sexual Identities
Video games have become more inclusive regarding gender and sexuality, adding features to accommodate L.G.B.T. players.
Tech Tip: Picking a Digital Publishing Format
E-book readers and tablets can handle several types of files, but some may work better for certain kinds of books.
Tech Tip: Get Your Photos Looking Better on Facebook
The social network includes an option in the settings for displaying nicer-looking versions of the pictures you upload from your phone.
Tech Tip: Turn Your Smartphone Into a Pocket Scanner
If your mobile gadget has a good camera and you have the right app, you do not need anything more to make quick digital copies of documents.
Tech Tip: How to Get Twitter’s Blue Badge of Authenticity
You can now apply for one of those little blue checks next to your user name that signify an official Twitter account.
Tech Fix: Subscribe and Save on Amazon? Don’t Count on It
Household staples like coffee and paper towels arrive automatically, but the prices may vary by as much as 170 percent.
On Technology: Turning Instagram Into a Radically Unfiltered Travel Guide
Exploring the app’s geolocation tags can transform it into an innovative and frenetic sort of tourism map — one tailored just for you.
Pandora Looks for a Way Out of the Doldrums. Cue Questlove.
The involvement of Questlove, of the Roots, is an important endorsement as the internet radio giant tries to compete directly with Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal.
State of the Art: Gawker’s Gone. Long Live Gawker.
Even if you avoided Gawker.com, you can’t escape its influence. Elements of its tone, style, sensibility, business model and work flow have colonized just about every other media company.
App Smart: Flash Card, Math and Organizer Apps for the 21st Century Student
StudyBlue, Symbolab and Google Keep are just a few of the apps that revolutionize tasks once done with pen and paper.
Feature: Inside Facebook’s (Totally Insane, Unintentionally Gigantic, Hyperpartisan) Political-Media Machine
How a strange new class of media outlet has arisen to take over our news feeds.
Liberal, Moderate or Conservative? See How Facebook Labels You
Take these steps to discover how the social network categorizes your political leanings.
Your Money Adviser: Social Security Retreats From Cellphone-Based Online Security
The change means users can log on to their online “mySocialSecurity” accounts as before, with just a username and password.
Twitter Suspends 235,000 More Accounts Over Extremism
The suspensions over the last six months are part of the social network’s continuing effort to stop people from using it to promote terror.
Uber Builds on Self-Driving Ambitions With Otto, a Trucking Start-Up
The move is the most recent indication of Uber’s ambitions for autonomous vehicles that can provide services to both consumers and businesses.
Tech Tip: How to Set Up a Mass Email System
Many programs and services, such as MailChimp, can handle your hefty mailing list, and some of them are free.
Tech Tip: Converting Spreadsheets in Apple’s Numbers to Excel
Apple’s spreadsheet program can edit Microsoft Excel files, but you need to take an extra step to use those files in Excel again.
Tech Tip: Comparing Digital Video Recorders
Your cable provider can offer you a DVR to record your favorite programs, but TiVo’s hardware can do more than just time-shift your shows.
App Smart: Apps That Help Take the Guesswork Out of Grilling
Apps provide recipes, timers, advice — everything you need except steaks and burgers to make your cookout delicious.
Tech Fix: Google Duo Makes Video Calling Between Operating Systems Easier
The app fits into Google’s playbook. Over the last few years, Google has increasingly offered its important software and internet services to iPhone customers.
State of the Art: A Charming Alternative Universe of You, Your Friends and No News
Both Snapchat Stories and the newer Instagram Stories let users experience their friends’ most intimate and endearing moments in a news-free zone.
With N.F.L. Deal, Twitter Live-Streams Its Ambitions