The Fourth of July is one of the last major holiday that we can celebrate summer. The true celebration is remembering our Founding Father's liberation from King George and the Empire of Great Britain, but many of you use this holiday to experience the highlights of summer such as family gatherings, barbecues, musical events, festivals, parades, and of course fireworks. To help you get the most out of the Fourth of July, I've compiled a few tech tips for you to use and to share with family and friends. Enjoy these tips and have a safe and memorable Fourth of July.
1. Fireworks photos. A few basic tips: Turn off your flash, avoid shakiness, don't zoom in, tinker with your camera's exposure settings, and try burst mode. If you aren't satisfied with the features of your built-in camera, try Camera+ Also, if you prefer to just take video, Vhoto is a cool iPhone app that finds the best photos in your videos. 2. Use Offline Maps. For those of us taking long drives through and to rural places without a quick mobile connection, knowing how to access Google Maps (iOS, Android) offline can be super useful. You can bring up an address or place, drag up from the bottom information widget, and select "Save map to use offline." 3. Stargazing. Once all that smoke from the fireworks dissipates, you may be able to see stars - especially if you're in an area without much light on the ground. SkyView is the best app for iOS and Android devices for viewing the stars and constellations nearby. 4. Take a Digital detox. Maybe you are looking forward to spending Fourth of July weekend not having to constantly check your smartphone every five minutes - perhaps a digital detox is in order. If that's the case, the simple and cheap way to detach from your gadget is to, well, stop using it. Disable your internet connection, put your phone on silent - heck, just turn it off if you really don't want to be distracted.