The Mogo Blog

Alexa Suter’s Guide to Tech Travel

**Alexa Suter**Today Mogo got together with Alexa – an international traveler and writer who’s fuelled her globetrotting adventures with her freelance gigs – to talk about new-age travel. A Vancouver local who’s spent the majority of the last year traveling and visiting over 10 new countries, we wanted to get Alexa’s perspective when it comes to the growing concept of tech travel. OUR INTERVIEW WITH ALEXA **Can you divulge some juicy details about your most recent travel endeavors?**I can, but I’d need about a week – so I’ll divulge the short version! Over the past year, with the ability to write on a remote basis, I traveled about nine months and visited 13 countries. I kicked off the year with a relaxed solo trip to Florida and the Bahamas. I lived for two months in London, and enjoyed another four months of long-term European travel. The bigger cities I’ve visited include Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Zurich, Vienna and Milan, while the more modest ones were just as (if not more!) incredible: Prague, Bratislava, Monaco, Florence, and Lucerne were amongst my favourites. About 7 of the 9 months of travel were done solo, so I found myself

5 Ways Quitting Facebook Cold Turkey Will Save You Money

“This is it! I’m out!” – Everyone, at one point. Whether you’re sick of game requests, can’t stand to see another one of your high-school-friend’s-kids, or you will go crazy if your uncle LOLZ on another one of your mobile uploads, we’ve all thought about quitting Facebook. Deactivating your account isn’t easy, you will have one fewer thing to mindlessly scroll through on the bus, and you will risk missing out on some fun social stuff – but here are 5 ways that quitting Facebook will save you money in the long run: 1. You’ll Miss Events, and Save on Going Out Now, this isn’t necessarily positive, but it’s a true statement. Facebook keeps you informed with the flow of concerts, events and other ways to spend your bucks. Looking to drop your spending for a month? Disable FB emails and take things easy. 2. Seeing Fewer Ads = Less Spending According to a study by Psychology Today, the more ads you see, the more likely you are to spend. As we all know, Zuckerbook is pumping out more and more ads on your feed. If you aren’t exposed to them, you will

How to extend your smartphone battery life

If you have a smartphone you have, no doubt, been the victim of a dead battery. As the functionality of smartphones increase, so do their battery use. No matter how smart your phone is if the battery is dead, it’s about as useful as a pet rock. There are some things you can do to mitigate the effects of increased power usage. Data Drain Connecting to the Internet utilizes more of your battery power than any other smartphone function. When you are not utilizing your Wi-Fi connection, turn it off. You should also turn your phone on to airplane mode when you are in a place where data connections are not possible like subways. Switching to airplane mode uses less energy than switching the phone off and back on. Only turn your phone off when you aren’t going to use it for several hours. Backlight blues When your screen is on bright, it does look better, but it also drains your battery faster. Opt for a dimmer screen or backlight so that your phone lasts longer. Ringer on When your phone vibrates, it uses more power than when the ringer is on. If you are going to be

Bio mimicry: The Future of Design

Mother Nature knows best! If you have every wondered at the ingenuity of the natural world, then you are not alone. Although humans have spent the majority of their time on the planet advancing their technology, they are slowly starting to learn that no design is better than those found in nature. Bio mimicry is technology that copies nature. The idea is to create sustainable items that do not impact the environment negatively and can be recycled after they have served their purpose. This means solar panels that convert energy in the same way that plants do are 99% efficient, and biodegradable fast food packaging can add valuable nutrients to your compost heap. Here are two more inventions that bring nature into your home in unexpected ways. Do you have a bathroom mat that is constantly damp, often moldy or smells a little funky? We all like to step out of the bath or shower onto something warm and fuzzy, but conventional bath mats aren’t really the ideal design. Now the moss mat from designer Nguyen La Chanh utilizes the lack of light and moist conditions of most bathroom floors to create an amazing, natural soft moss mat. Smartphones

Is Windows 8 the best Windows ever? (and is it worth the $?)

The fortunes of once-mighty software giant Microsoft have been steadily waning. The company has been losing ground over the last two decades to Apple. Microsoft has always dominated the desktop genre but, with cloud computing and the popularity of hand-held devices, the days of the desktop seem numbered. Microsoft, determined not to go quietly, is making is most daring comeback bid yet with the recent release of Windows 8. Windows 8 is such a surprising and innovative shift from traditional Microsoft thinking that it harkens back to the unabashed wonder I felt when I used an iPod for the first time. Windows 8 is intuitive, strikingly simple but dashingly functional. With the release of Windows 8, Microsoft has made the very important switch from geeky to cool. Best features include: Touch and trackpad gestures are intuitive and make navigating easy Multitasking is made easier by snapping apps New and improved Desktop tools like Task Manager and File History Competitive pricing Windows 8 is by no means perfect and there are a few kinks that need ironing out. I still miss the old Start menu, but I really liked the new functionality. The new interface will take some getting used to.