All posts by t0biasjay

Which streaming service is best for you?

As we progress into a more tech-filled world, the way we consume our media is changing as well. More and more entertainment companies are moving their movies and TV shows onto streaming services, rather than keeping them on cable TV.

However, with monthly fees for each service, it can stack up to be an expensive bill, leaving many to decide between services. It can  be difficult to decide which one to choose and which is best for you, so today we will take a look at 5 very popular streaming services to see which one suits you best. These 5 streaming services are: Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube TV, and Disney+.

Starting off with the service that popularized the streaming service craze, Netflix. Netflix offers a wider variety of content than competitors, making it an easy choice for those seeking an all-around great subscription service. While it may be more expensive than other services, they also offer a lot of original series’ that can’t be found anywhere else, such as Stranger Things.

The service that is seen as Netflix’s main competition is Hulu. Hulu is a streaming service that also has a variety of movies and TV shows, plus it also has Live TV options (note, Hulu is now owned by Disney). The primary issue is that, unless you are willing to pay extra for a premium account, the service won’t provide Live TV, and it runs ads. Hulu also has fewer original series’ than Netflix.

Similar to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video also has many high quality original movies and TV shows, as well as a lot of other content. One major benefit to using Amazon Prime Video is that you are able to rent or buy movies and TV shows that you otherwise would have to buy as a DVD (or use RedBox or a service similar to it).

YouTube TV is a great replacement to classic cable. While it is much more expensive than other streaming services, it is doing something different. It is replicating cable more than the others, and is mostly made up of live content. YouTube TV offers an excellent lineup of sports, news, and entertainment channels, and is a top choice for people who still want the cable TV experience but want to cut the cord and don’t want to spend as much money as cable.

Finally, the most recent addition to the lineup is Disney+. Disney+ is a service similar to Netflix and Hulu, but offers tons of Disney owned content all in one place. We all know how much of a juggernaut Disney is to the entertainment industry, so having a service of most of what Disney owns is a lot of content. However, many people are complaining that there isn’t a wide enough variety of content. Most of what is on Disney+ is movies, and there is barely anything new to watch on the service.

Overall, you can’t go wrong with any of these services. Whether you’re looking for a replacement to cable, a service that you can watch with your family, or just something to watch your favorite TV shows on, all of these have something for you.

Why are phones so expensive?

By Toby Groves

Phones are crucial to all of our lives. They provide many great features that we all use every day. However, recently there has been an increase of prices from all major phone and tech companies, such as Apple or Samsung. Phones have gone from being $200-300 back in 2010 to being closer to $1,000 now. Many people have a problem with the price increase, so why are phones so expensive now?

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There are a few reasons as to why phone prices have been skyrocketing over the past few years. The first reason is that in the US, flagship phones used to cost $200 as part of a mobile phone contract, while the majority of the providers, like AT&T, T-Mobile, etc. made most of their money through monthly fees. Now that those contracts are dead, phone prices are all stated outright. That explains why, several years ago, the iPhone’s price suddenly jumped up to $649.

Another big reason phones are so expensive is because they’re a lot harder to sell than they were back in 2010. Nowadays, almost everyone in America has a smartphone, or has made a conscious decision not to have one. There are very few people who have never heard of a smartphone, so the market to sell smartphones to new users is very scarce. 

Most often, the only reason someone would get a smartphone is to upgrade from their old phone to a newer model. Because of this, tech companies have made newer models stand out with great new features, rather than small bug fixes and minor hardware improvements. Making newer models is also an attempt to alienate older models, further pressuring users to upgrade to a more expensive phone. Even with all of these pressures on users, it is harder to sell an upgraded phone to a returning customer than to sell a phone to a new user.

The cost of building a phone has increased as well. New phones are expected to run at a certain speed, have a decent camera, and have a good user interface. The time and cost of these parts is large, and since companies need to make a profit, they sell the phone for more.

Phones are so expensive for many reasons, but as we move in to a tech-absorbed world, the increased price is just a side effect of the increased quality.

The dangers of working for Amazon

By Toby Groves

Whether you use it or not, everybody knows about Amazon. This worldwide company has grown to be one of the most successful businesses in recent history. Amazon has grown a lot over the years since its creation in 1994, but they are not immune to issues. One problem they face is the way they treat their employees. Here are some of the dangers of working for Amazon.

Amazon employees are packaging, bending, running, and lifting boxes for 10-12 hours a day just to get your order to your house in 2 days. Having severe working conditions can have an effect on the company’s employees. One problem is that, aside from breaks, employees don’t have any time for leeway or mistakes. If they stop for a few seconds outside of their designated breaks, it hurts their performance evaluations.

Of the 145 Amazon employees surveyed in a recent study, 66% said they experience physical pain while performing regular duties. From the same study, 42% said they still experience pain even when they’re not working. The pain stems from mostly their feet, but also their lower backs and knees.

Having a working environment in which employees are in constant physical pain throughout their shift, and even when they’re off duty, is an injustice, and needs to be changed. Not to mention that these pains are not always temporary. Experts are saying that these constant strains on muscles and your body can lead to musculoskeletal disorders.

“I feel pain in my back, in my waist, because I do a lot of bending … Even if you squat, you still feel the pain in your waist. It’s a full-body workout all day every day.”

Amazon employees also face a mental strain as well. They can feel as though they are pressured into performing past their limits in order to receive good performance evaluations and maintain their career. These issues have shown to affect their sleep and cause psychological stress.

Just because Amazon is a successful company doesn’t mean it is immune to safety regulations and proper support for their employees. Amazon is an ever-growing company and requires a lot of management and staff to keep things moving. However, with the lack of support that they show for their workers, it is hard to see if this company will change their rules, or have their regulations stay the way they are.

Why students need 8 hours of sleep

by Toby Groves

Maintaining a good sleep schedule is one of the most important things a student can do. Getting a good night’s sleep can affect many things in your life and it’s very noticeable when your body doesn’t get enough sleep. Here are some reasons why every student should get 7-8 hours of sleep each night.

With the busy lives of high school students, it can be hard to maintain a proper sleep schedule. However, failing to sustain this can negatively affect your health and how you interact with the world around you. Research shows that those who typically sleep under 7 hours each night have a higher chance of premature death than those who sleep a full 8 hours.

Sleeping well can affect your appetite. When a person is sleep deprived, their body requires more energy than usual due to their lack of sleep. This means that they need to find energy in different places, which includes eating more food. Not getting enough sleep can result in unhealthy eating habits. A study in 2014 showed that children with less sleep were more likely to become obese.

Getting enough sleep can also affect your immune system. When you sleep, your immune system releases compounds that have a protective effect on your immune system. Other components, such as white blood cells, can reduce when you don’t get enough sleep, which can result in sickness.

High school students tend to stay up late to work on homework assignments or study for tests, so as to not lower their grade. Often times, however, they fail to see the importance of getting enough sleep. What’s the point of studying for a test if you’re going to be too sick to make it to class?

High schoolers need to get enough sleep. With the busy lives they lead, it can be difficult to keep up with sleep, but it is crucial to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Sleep can affect your mood, your attention span, your thinking skills, and your appetite. It is important that students sleep well in order to succeed in their lives.

The benefits of planting trees

Trees provide many things for humans and are very important to the world. They produce oxygen from CO2 for us to breathe in, they provide shade, and they provide materials that we use every day, like wood.

As time goes on, the climate crisis is more of a threat than ever before, and we need to do something about it. Here are some ways that planting trees can affect the world.

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Trees make life nicer. Studies have shown that spending more time around trees and other environmental spaces can affect a person’s mood and reduce the stress in our daily lives. Other research shows that children have less issues in school if they spend time outdoors and in green spaces and areas with trees. Hospital patients have also been shown to recover faster when the window in their room is facing trees.

Trees also have many environmental benefits. Planting more trees not only means more oxygen will be released into the world, but less CO2 emissions in the world. CO2 emissions released from the burning of fossil fuels, such as coal and gas, will be stopped by trees, which will transform it into oxygen. Trees are crucial and are one of the frontrunners in the battle against climate change. Trees improve our air quality which can prevent diseases and toxic gases that can be transferred through the air, such as carbon monoxide and sulfur.

Believe it or not, planting more trees can also have some economic benefits as well. Planting trees near businesses and buildings can reduce cooling costs, like the costs of AC units. Studies have shown that cities with well planted trees near buildings are cooler than cities without trees. Trees can help to combat the hot summer heat, and can reduce temperatures by 11°. Trees can also increase the retail value of houses or properties.

Planting trees can have a great effect on the world. Whether it’s just for your neighborhood or for your city, every little bit matters. Planting trees can provide economical, environmental, and health benefits, and, overall, can make the world a better place. 

The effect homework has on high school students

High school students live busy lives. With school, work, and social lives, it can be hard for a teenager to find free time during the school year. One of the leading thieves of high schooler’s time is homework. Here are a few reasons as to how homework has an impact of high school students.

Having too much homework can affect the social lives of high school students. Students need time in their day to socialize with others and connect with one another. Having too much homework can result in a lack of a social life, and therefore can lead to difficulty paying attention during classes.

Homework can affect the mental health of high school students. According to a study done at Stanford University, 56% of students said that homework is a primary source of stress in their lives. Having too much homework can lead to stress, lack of sleep, poor eating habits, headaches, and exhaustion. Having less homework has also been proven to relax their brain and help them focus more when it’s actually time to work. 

Homework can also affect the grades of a high school student. Some teachers believe that if they assign more work, the grades of students will be better because they have more opportunities to turn in assignments, but this is not true. Having a lot of homework can stress out students, which leads to them being unable to turn them in. This in turn can lower their grades.

One reason students face a lot of homework during the school year is because it comes from many different classes. Most schools have six or seven class periods in a school day, and while teachers may think that they are not giving much homework, the work is coming from multiple sources. This can add up to become a lot of work for students. This problem can be solved simply by having teachers discuss with each other about the amount of work they hand out to students, and creating a schedule where their homework doesn’t overlap with each other to the point where it’s a ton of work.

Homework affects high school students every day, leading them to make decisions about how to spend their time and to stay organized. With the busy lives of high school students, having too much homework to do should not one be of the things stressing them out.

Highlights from the recent Apple event

Everyone knows about Apple. The extremely successful company has grown over the years and has created many revolutionary products of our time, like the iPhone. Recently, they had an event where they showcased some of the new products they were releasing this year. Here are some of the highlights:

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New iPad

The newest iPad is better and cheaper than ever, with a starting price of just $329. That’s a great price considering the iPad is like a computer and many people use iPads on a daily basis for work and school.

The new iPad also has a 100% recycled aluminum body and comes with a free, year-long subscription to Apple TV+. We’ll get to that later.

Apple Watch Series 5

This announcement was expected at the event, but nevertheless was exciting. This new Apple Watch has many new features that can make your life much easier. Some of these features include a new compass function, and many health-monitoring features, including a heart rate monitor and an emergency phone call function if you can’t access your phone.

The best new feature is an always-on feature, where the display of the watch never turns off, which is very useful.

Apple Arcade and Apple TV+

Some of the software features announced were the Apple Arcade and Apple TV+.  Apple Arcade is a subscription service that allows access to a wide variety of games to be played on your iPad or iPhone. There were over 100 titles released when it launched on September 19, from big game companies like Capcom and Konami.

The other subscription service announced was Apple TV+. Apple TV+ is, when boiled down, Apple’s take on a television streaming service, similar to Netflix or Hulu. The service has original TV shows and movies, and is set to release on November 1st for $5 a month.

iPhone 11

The announcement of the night, that had to take the cake, was the iPhone 11 and the iPhone 11 Pro. These new iPhones have tons of new features that top them from their previous models, especially the iPhone 11 Pro. It comes with 3 cameras, which includes an ultrawide camera lense. This lense is used to take very wide photos that look amazing, and it is considered the greatest camera on a mobile phone, ever.


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Apple has created a wide list of products, and is improving on them now more than ever. These products are designed to be integrated into our everyday life and match with our lifestyle. Apple products have many uses, and can help make our lives easier.

How Instagram (and other social media sites) have an effect on high schoolers

High schoolers go through a lot. They have homework assignments due every day, quizzes, lab reports, tests, and they need to maintain a proper social life, all while getting enough sleep to last throughout the week.

One issue that arises with students in the 21st century is having a social media presence, mainly being on Instagram. Here are some ways that Instagram (and social media in general) have an effect on high schoolers.

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Students with social media grow up with less self esteem and more anxiety. Experts say that exposure to technology at a young age can affect the livelihoods of people. In today’s modern world, everyone uses technology now more than ever before, and that includes children and teenagers.

The overuse of social media sites, like Instagram, have been statistically proven to lower the self esteem and cause more anxiety with teenagers. People on social media tend to post their best moments in life, which can lead viewers to believe that their life is boring in comparison.

Recent studies show that teenagers’ social skills are lacking due to their overuse of social media. Because of the simplicity and ease it takes to talk to someone online, or over the phone, high schoolers have been spending less time hanging out with each other. This can cause teenagers to have weak social skills and trouble talking to people face-to-face.

Another way social media has an effect on high schoolers is cyber bullying. According to the Psychiatry and Behavioral Health Learning Network, cyber bullying has been linked with a range of mental health effects. Cyber bullied teens are more likely to smoke, drink and do drugs, which are all proven to shorten life spans and cause addiction.

 Another study by the same organization reads 20% of cyber bullied victims have symptoms of depression and anger. The last thing a high schooler needs in their life is mental problems that can make a busy lifestyle even worse.

Instagram has a big impact on high schoolers and teenagers in general. This article isn’t saying you should stop using Instagram altogether, just be informed and aware with what you post and see online, and monitor the amount of time you spend on social media.

For more information, please visit:

Psychiatry & Behavioral Health Learning Network

The Child Mind Institute

4 ways to support Hurricane Dorian victims

As you all may know, Hurricane Dorian has severely affected the lives of those living in the Bahamas. You may be seeing it all over the news, and you may be wondering ”Is there anything I, a high school student in Minnesota, can do to help those in the Bahamas who have been struck by this tragedy?” Well, there are some ways you can help. Here are 4 ways you can support the victims of Hurricane Dorian.


1. Donate Money

The first and most effective way to help is to donate money to a variety of organizations that help hurricane relief. Several organizations are already working in the Bahamas. A couple organizations include: The Red Cross and Global Giving.

Donating can vastly help support those who are struggling in the Bahamas, and are in need of materials.

Americares is a company that will also help based on what you give. This disaster relief organization is currently promoting a donation match and will match donations you give dollar for dollar.

2. Donate Clothes

Donating Clothes is definitely a great way to help provide citizens with proper, wearable clothes. You can donate clothes to the Bahamas Red Cross and they will see to it that they get in the hands of those who need it most.

3. Provide Supplies and Resources

If you’re short on money, or can’t give out any clothes, you can also give resources and supplies to organizations that help relief from Hurricane Dorian. Miami-Dade county is collecting supplies to help Hurricane survivors, and are accepting a wide variety of donations, including tents, cots, hygiene kits, purified water, portable generators and more.

4. Give Canned Food

Non-perishable food products are definitely needed in the Bahamas as a solution to feed those who have been driven out of their homes without resources, and are living in temporary spaces. You can donate canned goods to: World Central Kitchen.


Every little donation helps, no matter where in the world you are. Together, we can support those less fortunate than us by giving whatever we can to help hurricane victims. No matter how little you give, it’s up to us to respond to the needs of Dorian victims.