Seven Technology Myths Exposed

Over the years, since tribunals of geeks have perpetrated their amalgamation of ideas, these myths have been presented by various experts, salespeople, and bloggers, making them sacred in their claims to certain facts. However, over time, some of these sometimes outlandish myths and theories have taken on a life of their own. So, in order to dispel some of the most ridiculous claims by these individuals, I have taken the time to recreate their experiments and have been able to, in many cases, scientifically dispel the concept that there are any performance differences or lack of same. That doesn’t mean, however, that I won’t continue to research every new idea or concept to see if it performs as promised or if it appears to be just another con to get the trusting souls out there to part with their few extra dollars.

My determinations as to the value of a given product are based on the personal experience I have had regarding performance and my reasoning behind dispelling the researchers’ work or recommending it to you, the reader. I don’t believe that there is any other way to actually investigate a product’s claims, other than to personally experience the product’s purpose and then check to see if its claims are verifiable. If their claims do not live up to expectation or they lack the expectations of improved performance, my own opinion would be to contact the seller and report your dissatisfaction. Below is a list of seven such myths that will be exposed for exactly what they are: myths and not facts. These are my opinions.

Seven Technology Myths ExposedExpensive HDMI cables will improve the picture on your HDTV.

It always amazes me that people will spend $150 for an HDMI cable when a salesperson makes a claim that these high-end cables will actually improve picture quality. I recall a few years ago when my neighbor bought a new HDTV and he paid the retailer to install and set up his system. As the crew was setting up the system, it asked my neighbor if he had an HDMI cable available since the cable was a must have in order to obtain the best picture quality for his new HDTV. My neighbor had no such cable and paid these thieves $75 for a pretty HDMI cable wrapped in fancy blue nylon cord of some type. When he told me what had happened, I brought over a $6 HDMI cable purchased via an Internet store. To test the quality of the individual cables, he activated his newly set up HDTV using his existing Dish Network set-top box on an HD channel. Yes, the picture came in nicely but then I swapped cables and once again activated the screen to see if there was any difference in the picture quality. As I believed was to be expected, neither of us could visualize any difference in picture quality; naturally, he returned his $75 cable to the store for a full refund.

A 64-bit OS will make computing twice as fast as a 32-bit one.

The new laptop system I recently purchased came with a 64-bit pre-installed copy of Windows Home Premium. For those who may believe that a 64-bit OS will run twice as fast as a 32-bit system, I hate to pop your bubble. The fact is, a 64-bit system will perform better and quicker if one has a 64-bit software program installed, and a 64-bit Windows OS can read more than 3 GB of memory. Without this, the systems will run just about the same.

CD/DVD/Blu-ray discs will last forever.

The claims from some media manufacturers is that their discs — whether CD/DVD or Blu-ray — should last for up to 100 years. This reminds me of those infomercials in which the product comes with a lifetime warranty. I have always wondered to myself whose lifetime are we talking about? Your order instructions offer a choice of calling a toll free number, sending a check to a PO Box, and/or ordering the product online. Did you catch the fact that no physical address is given for the company, which means you will most likely be unable to find them if their company suddenly goes bankrupt or just simply disappears.

We had this happen with a vacuum cleaner we had bought from Sears. All we needed were replacement belts for the $400 cleaner, but we were told to contact the manufacturer. Believe me when I say we tried to no avail. It was not to be found and we had no choice but to toss the one-year-old vacuum in the recycle bin. So while this was our experience, the question still remains as to who you should see about collecting on my lifetime warranty. To me. a lifetime warranty on a product should follow the item, no matter how many times it changes hands, as long as the documentation is still intact as to when it was purchased and for what amount.

Realistically, however, I doubt that in 100 years many of us will be around to confirm that our CD/DVD or Blu-ray discs still function. Then, too, with technology whirling at supersonic speeds, is it likely that the units we purchase today or those who sell them to us will still be around to view our data on these discs? I would think that we can better imagine them in a museum where our grandchildren will be asking us how we managed to deal with such clumsy technology. With that being said, I would suggest, just to be safe, that you back up your discs every few years to avoid any possible degradation (the discs may experience erosion from environmental factors). Better yet, back up your discs using the newest technology, because as we are all aware, the latest and greatest gadgets lie just beyond the next horizon.

Companies have employed a secret combination to unlock your smartphone battery.

This is another myth and involves the user being able to press a combination of keys (on the dial pad), that will unlock a secret power reserve on the battery. I received this information via email and the sender had actually included the secret code that was to open this reserve for me. The sender informed me that all I had to do, in order to make this secret power work, was to wait for my cell phone’s battery to run down before entering the secret combination and voila! I would get another jolt of power. This power would then allow me to make additional calls, continue to finish up surfing the Internet, or anything else I wished to do. Though the idea is great, the reality is there is no such additional battery power available by using any secret code.

RAM optimizer software will increase your system’s performance.

Who doesn’t want their computer to run faster and smoother? Over the years, a great deal of money has been made by companies making unrealistic promises of improved performance and faster speeds, which have basically provided little, if any, system improvement. So it is with RAM optimizers, which are an all show and no go type of software. Basically, Windows does a pretty good job, all by itself, of handling RAM for most Windows computers. If anything, adding more RAM in itself will provide the user with a better performance increase than any type of software one can buy. Maybe even more important is the need to keep your system properly maintained, since this is a guaranteed way to increase the way your computer performs.

Using a laptop computer on your lap will make you sterile.

This myth has been perpetrated for years and holds no merit. The myth claims that the heat generated by the laptop as it sits on your lap can make a man sterile. This heat is not just the result of what is generated by the machine itself, but supposedly involves a user keeping his legs closed together. If this were the case, any male who sits in front of a desk all day should, in theory, become sterile. This is total hogwash and there is no reputable scientific proof that this has ever happened.

Newer models are always better than the older models they replace.

This myth depends on what you are referring to. In general, improvements in computer hardware, at least for the most part, are definite improvements, but this doesn’t always hold true in the software market. This is because the consumer is fickle when it comes to the specific use of certain software products. Microsoft learned this lesson the hard way when it introduced Windows Vista and Windows 7. Consumers were so ingrained with Windows XP that they had no desire to upgrade to the newer software products being offered.

Another factor was that many of the older Windows XP systems lacked the basic hardware requirements to even run the newer operating systems, resulting in many XP users just deciding to stay with XP; many still enjoy the same OS today. I even have an old laptop that is still running XP, and have had no difficulties with it as it continues to work just fine. This was one case where newer did not prove to be better for everyone. The myth that newer is always better is not a 100% absolute.

Let me know if you have any myths that need to be dispelled.

Comments welcome.

Article Written by

I have been writing for LockerGnome since relocating to Missouri seven years ago, where I continue to be a technology enthusiast who enjoys playing with the newest and latest gadgets.

  • http://profiles.google.com/rysliv ryan haz

    more ram does not mean it makes your computer faster, but able to handle more at the same time, virtual ram should just disappear, its the worst type of memory ever.

    • Albert Samson

      And the bigger problem with virtual memory is that it takes too much ram.

  • Deino .

    As a former Cable guy…I could say that the quality of the HDMI cables do make a difference, but over time…the most usual problems about cheaper cables affected sound and in just a few image artifacts. About CD-DVD-Blu-Ray’s lasting 100 years…uff…I saw a few cheap disks that couldn’t receive a scratch on the label side, because even a little wind could peel the reflective cover off. 

  • Benoit Griesbach

    I got a hot myth dealing with HyperMemory. They say your graphic card is really fast because of this amazingly powerful “HyperMemory” option.
    But if you’re a real geek, you know how wrong it is. Because actually “HyperMemory” means “I am a cheap graphic card without any memory at all -because I’m too cheap to afford memory on my board- so I steal your computer memory when I need it and I call this process “HyperMemory” so that you think it’s really great”.

    Or I heard some of my friends pretending a dual core processor @ 1.5Ghz is as fast and powerful as a uni core processor @ 3Ghz.
    Following this logic, now what about the last processor with 8 core @3,8Ghz? Haha come on guys… xD

  • http://twitter.com/lhamil64 Lee

    I think the whole “secret code to get more juice out of your battery” thing was actually started from  old Nokia phones. From what I’ve read, typing in a certain code changes some settings or something that lower the battery usage (and make the little battery bar go up, because they don’t actually measure the battery, they measure how much usage you’ll get if you use it how you are currently). So, this would make people think that, because the battery bar went up, there must be a section of the battery that was unlocked or something to give it more power, when in reality it’s just the phone changing some settings to make it last a little bit longer.

  • http://twitter.com/goingfishing11 Chris Wieninger

    “Using a laptop computer on your lap will make you sterile.” No, heat
    won’t, but now there’s some tests (albeit poorly conducted ones thus
    far) claiming that wifi will kill sperm. However, the testers simply put
    semen under an active wifi signal. Not entirely scientific.

  • TDSM Darkness

    I have tried programs like Advanced System Care (ASC)  and Game Booster (GB) for optimizing RAM on my pc performance to give me a boost in my gaming needs but they did not really do anything,

    ASC pro’s: turning off background processors unused ones anyways, internet optimization ( using pro version), turning off windows aero.
    ASC con’s: doesn’t make any difference if those where on or not. . .

    GB pro’s: yes they say it speeds up your RAM, but does it really ? or just messes up your RAM…
    GB con’s: its like an adiction if you ever start using GB for 1st time, you have to use it again and again each time you want to start a game …

    Overall Experience: both of those programs did not help with pc’s RAM optimization, my pc had the same speed as before the optimization. have used both programs for over a year or so. Best thing I would suggest is save up and either buy new improved desktop / laptop or get parts to upgrade your pc. Its what I have done, my laptop was busted up after i tried GB for the gaming need and later on couldn’t stop so I saved up and got a custom built pc.

  • TDSM Darkness

    I have tried programs like Advanced System Care (ASC)  and Game Booster (GB) for optimizing RAM on my pc performance to give me a boost in my gaming needs but they did not really do anything,

    ASC pro’s: turning off background processors unused ones anyways, internet optimization ( using pro version), turning off windows aero.
    ASC con’s: doesn’t make any difference if those where on or not. . .

    GB pro’s: yes they say it speeds up your RAM, but does it really ? or just messes up your RAM…
    GB con’s: its like an adiction if you ever start using GB for 1st time, you have to use it again and again each time you want to start a game …

    Overall Experience: both of those programs did not help with pc’s RAM optimization, my pc had the same speed as before the optimization. have used both programs for over a year or so. Best thing I would suggest is save up and either buy new improved desktop / laptop or get parts to upgrade your pc. Its what I have done, my laptop was busted up after i tried GB for the gaming need and later on couldn’t stop so I saved up and got a custom built pc.

    • Albert Samson

      I have TuneUp Utilities on my computer and it does quite a good job in managing the ressources on my computer

  • Anonymous

    Great article

  • milad gh

    nice.. thanx. I doubt about the laptop over lap thing however

  • Anonymous

    I think the one about the laptop has been misunderstood. I was always taught not to have a laptop sit directly on my lap as the infra-red and wireless connection can cause complications in the fertility of men. It’s not the heat that was suggested caused this. I was however also taught not to use a laptop directly on a bed as it blocks the fans underneath and causes it to overheat. I think this may be where heat is being confused.

    • Organicrust

      No, it is actually the heat of the laptop that impedes sperm production.  People still argue the reason why, but we know that your testes need to be cooler than your body temperature in order to produce viable sperm cells.  This is the reason why they hang out in your scrotum and not in your abdomen.  Frequent hot tub use has the same effect.  Source: I am a medical student.

  • Linda

    Some Nokia phones actually have a reserve battery. It’s for back up in case the main one is completely drained.This isn’t really a secret since the manual tells you how you would be able to use the back up battery if you need to make an urgent call.

  • chub

    If one is stupid enough to have a hot laptop on their lap they should not be procreating in the first place. Hot laptop will kill sperm simple as that. Please don’t spread stupid ‘theories’ that are not true especially if your not a doctor. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001095211708 Julian Elam

    Nice Article, But one thing wants to say that its not true that people don’t want newer updates. Most of my hostel friends don’t want to use or install Windows XP on their system, they wants to use Windows 7, Even their system may have low configuration. Thanks for share.                   

  • Douglas Wilson

    Another myth is the lithium ion battery myths that you cant drain a battery and that the battery has a memory so you are supposed to charge it fully when you get it.

  • Douglas Wilson

    Another myth is the lithium ion battery myths that you cant drain a battery and that the battery has a memory so you are supposed to charge it fully when you get it.

  • http://twitter.com/SilentAero Jake

    Good luck pressing the “secret code to get more juice out of your battery” on an iphone. :P

  • http://twitter.com/SilentAero Jake

    Good luck pressing the “secret code to get more juice out of your battery” on an iphone. :P

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