Need some easy-to-accomplish 2019 goals? 


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Ars Orbital HQ
Bill & Ted, medieval adventures

Ahhh, the end of the year—that special post-holiday period filled with year-end lists, offday goofing around, and ample time to binge, listen, and read as you please.

Everyone (Ars staffers certainly included) needs that little respite to ramp up for an entirely new year filled with everything from Elon to espionage. And with that newfound energy, we'll be applying it to various resolutions just like everyone else. So for the last Ars Orbital Transmission of the year, we've rounded up a few suggestions for easy 2019 goals to get that ball rolling. Finishing that novel or finally taking the Linux plunge requires a sustained concerted effort, but these should be accomplishable before the calendar hits February.

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Orbital Transmission 12.28.2018

Defy your favorite phone maker, wait on a 5G device

Not only are modern phones built better (thus lessening the need to update annually), but next year's hottest marketing angle—5G connectivity!—will initially come with some pretty big caveats. Eventually this standard should enable faster user experiences, but to start expect thicker, hotter, more complicated phones that use more energy and cost more money (for a variety of reasons).

2FA via Google

Leave two-factor authentication *via text* in the past

Trust us, it really is that bad. While two-factor authentication via text message is more secure than nothing for your various connected passwords, this procedure has proven to be susceptible to malicious actors. Thieves have drained bank accounts, hackers pwned Reddit, and Iranian intelligence recently targeted various US entities all by putting 2FA via text in their crosshairs. Try a Yubikey or a third-party authenticator app instead.

Teach yourself the basics of something new, like Bitcoin

Bitcoin is far from new, but cryptocurrencies are in the news far too often to skip on knowing the basics these days. Luckily, Ars makes a habit of lengthy explainers on the most technical of topics in the headlines (see also 3D printed guns or new Wi-Fi standards), so you too can make blockchain jokes part of your arsenal in 2019.

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Support quality journalism

No, we're not going to start doing annual fundraising drives like public media  (where Ira Glass may or may not sometimes shame us all). But outlets that report and research topics that are important to you provide a priceless public good, so consider a subscription (one to Ars Technica even includes a YubiKey to boot). 

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