Tech Writer David Pogue on Life Hacks that Actually Work

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 (David Pogue)

How do you clean a blender easily? Or know what side an upcoming freeway exit will be on? David Pogue reveals his ideas and tricks for optimizing our gadgets and streamlining our lives in his new book, "Pogue's Basics: Life: Essential Tips and Shortcuts (That No One Bothers to Tell You) for Simplifying Your Day ." The Yahoo Tech founder and former New York Times technology columnist joins us to share his tips on everything from getting ketchup out of a bottle to finding your car in a parking lot. Tell us -- what's your favorite life hack?

Some Tips Mentioned During the Show

A quick and simple way to sharpen scissors: cut sandpaper.

Matches too short for your grill or out of them completely? Try using uncooked spaghetti to fire it up. Also works for lighting multiple candles at once.

Need a redo on a mistake of a voicemail? Verizon, Sprint, AT&T and T-mobile all set '#3' to re-record a message.

Most companies will let you change the due date for your monthly credit card payment. Can be helpful when trying to coordinate paying your bills with the day you recieve your paycheck.


David Pogue, Yahoo Tech; former tech columnist for the New York Times; host of PBS's NOVA' author of "Pogue's Basics: Life: Essential Tips and Shortcuts (That No One Bothers to Tell You) for Simplifying Your Day."


Holding a TV remote up to your head amplifies the signal.

Some ways to prevent crying when cutting an onion include: turning on a fan, chilling the onions beforehand, using a sharp knife and cutting the onion while it's under water, cutting the onion near a stove or lit candle.

Should you feel uncertain about older eggs, plop them in water -- good eggs sink to the bottom.

Using the spacebar to pause or play a YouTube video can be fickle and scroll the page down -- use the "K" key instead. Also, pressing the "L" key lets you jump 10 seconds ahead.

Kitchen gloves could be your secret weapon to opening that stubborn jar of pickles.

Leaving butter out of the refrigerator is not only safe and USDA-approved, but keeps it soft and spreadable.