Computer Training; Your Gateway to the Competitive IT World!

Computers have been long since introduced among mankind; and it was not so long after people adopted it and became iconic as they are now. Most residence, nowadays, own a set or two of computers; varying from desktops, laptops, notebooks and the sophisticated palm versions. Computers have opened the Information World; and Information Technology now dominates most aspects of living from the outskirts of business districts to the desks of those rendering public service in the government, from the armed forces to the school grounds.

Amidst these overwhelming innovations, though, there are still those who’re left with their simple beliefs and lifestyle; not even knowing how to perform a simple operation in a personal or desktop computer. And if you’re among them, there’s still time for you to catch up and start computer training.

Computer training will help you get familiarized with computers, its applications, dynamics and the technologies incorporated with them. You will be assisted by the knowledge you’ll acquire throughout your journey while living in the computer age.

Advantages of Computer Training

Since your everyday life will mostly involve the use of computers and other digital facilities; it will do you better to gain proficiency with each of them. Computer training will arm you with the knowledge you need in operating computers and the things associated with it such as hardware, software and computer applications.

Most jobs and employment opportunities nowadays also require proficiency in computer and IT matters; most computer and IT-related careers commands high salaries and an employee’s marketability largely depends on the diversity of his/her computer skills. Thus, being acquainted with every aspect of computers through computer training will give you the edge and high possibility of getting hired especially in multi-national companies.

Also, the business sectors and other aspects of society have evolved along with the evolution of computer technology; and most business establishments run their entities with computers. It is advantageous to have systematic business processes like staffing, accounting, filing and other transactions made possible with computers; thus, if you’re planning to start-up a business or wants to establish your business, it will help you a lot if you’re aiding your daily business routines with computers. Hence, the need for you to undergo computer training for improved business handlings.

Computer Training Schools

Computer training is mainly divided into several divisions of learning so as to have organized learning process; these are mainly hardware, software, networking and web development. Other computer training will also include basic computer safety, maintenance and troubleshooting. And you’ll learn all these in computer training schools and centers.

There are many schools and training centers that offer computer training and educations; they mostly offer certification courses or degree programs. Here are few tips on how you can find good schools for your computer training:

– Consider the size of the class. It is better to enroll in a computer training course where there are fewer students for the instructor to attend to; you’d be given more attention and guidance through the learning process in this case.

– Look for a school that offers enough training facilities. It is better to learn computers through hands-on process, thus, it would be better if each student is provided a computer. It is also good to learn in a more conducive place.

– The school you’re planning to attend for computer training should be certified so you’ll be assured of the quality of teaching that you’ll get from them. And they should issue certificates for your training; you can use these as proof of your computer studies.

– Your school should also have convenient location and scheduling. Especially for those who are already working and needs certification, you should find schools that offer classes in your most convenient time and are located in a more accessible area.

– Lastly, you must look for computer training schools that offer reasonable training costs and fees. There are also available financial aids that may help you out.

There are also many programs and software available on the Internet that can aid you with your computer training; thus, you can have self-taught computer training at home in your most convenient time.

Robert Thatcher is a freelance author based in Cupertino, California. He publishes articles and reports in various ezines and contributes on a regular basis to [http://www.freenetpublishing.com]

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Robert_Thatcher/27051

 

Guide to Buying a Desktop Computer

With the rapid pace of technological developments, nothing has become as ubiquitous as the computer. Everyone’s got one. And they are used for all manner of endeavour, by people of all walks of life. So, do you simply buy the computer that someone’s selling? Or do you do some homework and figure out what detailed specifications are going to make some difference to you?

At Myshopping.com.au you can compare the prices of a wide range of different computers from different vendors and of different specifications. This guide will help you find what you’re looking for.

Mac or Windows (PC)

At the outset, you need to decide what you are going to use the computer for. This will help you make the fundamental decision of whether you should go Mac or PC. Although, with the advent of the dual core processor (an Intel chip now used by Mac) the differences are narrowed a little, there are still some choices that can help you favour one system over another. Historically, Mac computers have a reputation for greater stability that comes from a more robust operating system than Windows based computers. Largely for this reason, Macs have been the computer of choice for the graphic design industry, the music production industry and the video production industry. This has prompted the software manufacturers to make professional software packages for these disciplines that favour the Mac operating system. Although they have packages supporting the Windows operating system, they are often less capable.

Consequently, if you are engaged in these industries and need your computer for this type of work, you should consider Mac. Mac computers appear to attract fewer viruses and software malfunctions than do Windows based PCs. On the down side, there has always appeared to have been limited software support for Mac systems.

Another decision that may guide your choice is the aesthetics of the computer. If you have limited available space, there is nothing quite like the iMacs or the mini Macs for space saving. iMac’s all-in-one desktop units are compact and complete with all the connectivity you need. However, the look of other brands may be more to your taste, with many models available in compact packages and modern colour schemes to suit practically all dйcor. Now that you’ve made that basic decision, you can start comparing the apples with apples.
Mac
Windows XP Home
Windows XP Professional

The Components of Your Computer

The two factors that determine the price of your computer are size (yes it does matter) and speed. Either or both of these two dimensions are a factor of practically every component that makes up the machine. Naturally the highest price tags go with the combination of biggest and fastest.

CPU

The heart of the computer is the CPU (central processing unit). You need to decide which CPU you want driving your computer. These come from different manufacturers, and the current development of the technology is called Dual Core, which means that there are two processors on the one chip. Dual Core technology delivers more performance with less energy requirements. Intel and AMD are the two leading CPU manufacturers, and they offer different products under different names.

Current processing speeds range from about 1.4 GHz (gigahertz) through to 3.46 GHz. But it is not simply just a matter of speed. There are other considerations. Mac Operating Systems have a different architecture to Windows and will perform many functions faster with a slower speed CPU. A dual core chip at 1.4 GHz will deliver a better performance that a Pentium 4 chip at 1.8 GHz. A 1.4 GH dual core chip running a Mac with OSX Tiger, will perform better than a 2.0 GHz Pentium 4 processor running Windows. You need to decide what you want your computer to do, what your major software requirements are before you decide on the CPU processor.

However, for everyday use, a processor faster than 1.8 GHz will deliver excellent performance. As a rough rule of thumb, choose a Celeron for low cost computing, a Pentium 4 for mid-range budgets, or an AMD Athlon for bigger budgets. You can compare computers based on Pentium, Celeron, Athlon or Dual Core CPUs by searching those specifications on Myshopping.com.au and finding different vendors and brands using different processors.

RAM

This is where bigger definitely means better performance. RAM is the system memory that enables the computer to use its programs and swap data between the hard drive and the program functions. It’s important to match the speed of the RAM of your computer with the speed of the CPU. The more RAM you have available for your programs to work, the faster will your computer run. Most computers today come with at least 256 M (megabytes) of RAM. But memory is a relatively cheap component, and it costs little extra to upgrade to 512 M or greater.

HARD DRIVE

For a detailed explanation of hard drives, please see the article on Myshopping.com.au dedicated to Hard Disc Drives.

The hard drive of the computer stores your program files and your data. As computers have advanced, so has the need for more capacity to operate programs and store data. People working in media fields tend to work with very large files and require large storage space. Most computers in today’s market come with a minimum of 40G of hard drive space. However, this can be upgraded (usually in 20G chunks) to as much as 200G or more. The effectiveness of your hard drive also can depend on its physical speed (5400-7200 RPM) and the speed at which it can transfer data between the computer’s RAM and the hard drive. Faster means better performance.

REMOVABLE MEDIA

You will want to have a CD-R or (CD-RW) drive installed in your computer, and or possibly a DVD or DVD-R. For reading a CD ROM, all that is required is a CD drive and for watching DVD movies, a DVD ROM drive. However with a CD-R drive, you can record your own data and music CDs, and with a DVD-R drive, you can burn files in a DVD format, allowing you to store movies and data in far greater quantities. The CD-RW (DVD-RW) drives allow you to use re-recordable media. Your decision will depend on what you want to use your media drives for and what you want to store.

Other removable media will possibly include flash card storage, which is usually plugged in via the USB ports on the computer.

MONITORS

For a detailed explanation of monitors, please see the article on Myshopping.com.au dedicated to Monitors.

The monitor for your computer is integral to its function and aesthetics. If you are working in graphics you may want to stay with a CRT monitor. However most bundle offers these days are supplied with LCD monitors, which have the advantages of smaller space requirements, use lower energy and offer wider screen images. However they generally are more expensive (although prices are dropping everyday), can frequently be not as bright, have limited viewing angles and sometimes require a digital interface connector.

For graphics intensive work, LCD screens do not have the same capacity to render colours in gradients as CRT monitors. Once again, size matters. Bigger screens cost more than smaller ones.

VIDEO AND SOUND

For a detailed explanation of video cards, please see the article on Myshopping.com.au dedicated to Video Cards.

The interface between the CPU and the Monitor is provided by the video card. One of the basic decisions you need to make is whether you require a 3D or 2D card. Video cards come in two different types: those that use an AGP (accelerated graphics port) on the computer motherboard and those that use the PCI bus. Data transfer rate is critical to video performance. Faster video cards use an AGP, and this proves a faster data transfer than PCI cards. Most video cards also have their own video memory installed on the card, a feature that increases a computer’s memory performance. Today, these memories are often 128M or 256M, and can be more in the higher-end cards dedicated to sophisticated video work or gaming. Video cards performance is also affected by what is known as clock speed or clock rate, cards with a faster speed offer faster performance.

Cheaper computers, and laptops and notebooks, have an integrated graphics chip included in the motherboard instead of a discrete video card. This type of configuration is not as powerful or as fully functional as having a separate video card, which can allow more comprehensive gaming, the use of multiple monitors and faster and better rendering of images.

For a computer to reproduce the sounds recorded in games, movies and music products it requires a sound card. Quality of sound can be affected by the sound card your computer has installed. It’s important that you know how you want to use the sound reproduction processes of your computer. If you are a musician and want to record audio, then you will want to be sure that you have excellent connectivity, good midi access and at least 16-bit (CD quality) audio reproduction. Sound cards give you the possibilities of full cinema surround sound, and the many subtle effects employed by high-end games.

Nearly every computer comes with a set of stereo speakers. However it pays to have a good listen to what you’re buying. Make sure you listen to program that you are familiar with (take your own CD along) and compare the sound in a quiet environment. Many speaker systems for computers have poor frequency response and are underpowered. For desktop use that does not involve a quality listening environment this may be satisfactory. But if you want to listen to music and watch movies for the full effect, then you need to consider buying a good quality set of speakers. Use the search facility of Myshopping.com.au to compare specifications and prices of different speaker systems.

KEYBOARD AND MOUSE

The choice of keyboard and mouse are personal choices. Sometimes it depends on what you do on your computer, whether you have formal typing skills or whether you’re a two-finger hack. Serious writers may prefer an ergonomic keyboard. Keyboards frequently have different clicks and responses to others. You may prefer an infrared cordless keyboard and mouse. You may prefer an optical mouse on which you don’t have to clean the rollers. Optical mice have no rollerball, and can be used on most flat surfaces, but they are more expensive.

CONNECTIVITY

Today, connectivity is everything. Your computer can have wireless connections to all of your peripherals: printer, scanner, and other computers. Having an onboard modem will only be really important if you are using a dial up internet connection. Broadband modems tend to be peripherals and you can connect via USB, wireless or firewire. It does pay to consider how you will connect to the internet and other peripherals. It’s not always convenient to get behind your computer to plug something in or unplug it. Some sound cards have a front face panel with all the connections you need. The USB ports on Macs are conveniently located. Many PC manufacturers haven’t caught on to the fact that it’s important for some people to easily access the connections to their computers.

To compare the different bundle offers from different brands, and to compare the different components by their specifications, search the Myshopping.com.au database for exactly the specifications you are seeking. You can compare prices and vendors, and order what you need online with a few clicks.

Andrew Gates for comparison online shopping service MyShopping.com.au. MyShopping.com.au helps you compare the different computers from different brands in terms of specifications and accessories. You can also compare prices from hundreds of different brands and vendors.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Andrew_Gates/23014

 

Hurricane Proof Computer

Part I: Backing Up Data And Things to Have

Hurricane season or not, you should always be backing up your data. Whether you plan on riding out the storm (a bad idea) or evacuating to another location, you should have a backup of your computer data either on an external hard drive or optical media such as CD-Rs or a DVD. Be sure to keep your data in a very safe place, such as a water proof safe. Never leave your backup by your computer.

Next, you should have the following things to make life after the storm easier:

1. Phone numbers for insurance, computer or computer parts companies, and phone numbers for all local ISPs (including dial-up and satellite).
Having your insurance phone number and phone numbers for your computer company will help get your computer replaced faster if it is damaged. I can’t stress enough how important it is for you to have phone numbers and even access disks for all of your local ISPs! After Katrina, the Internet was the only way many people could contact the outside world. As fate would have it, my broadband was down for 3 weeks and none of the other broadband ISPs would except new orders due to the storm, leaving me with my old friend Dial Up, whom I thought I had buried 8 years ago. Your best bet is to use a satellite ISP as they have no equipment that can be destroyed by a hurricane and cause an outage.

2. Back ups of all your file, have all application and game discs, CD keys, drivers, and operating system discs on hand.

3. Photos of your computer as well as proof of what parts are inside.

In the event your quad SLI rig is destroyed, you don’t want your insurance company to replace it with something of a significantly lesser value, do you? It’s very easy for people to claim “I had this, this, and this and it all cost me $3000 last month.” after their 3 year old Athlon XP rig is destroyed. As a result, your insurance company may be hesitant to replace your expensive computer parts unless you can prove you own them. Also know to what extent your insurance (including flood insurance) will replace damaged property. While some policies will cover the replacement cost of damaged property, some may only cover part of the damage cost. Also know what your deductible is.

4. Blog or Social Networking Profile

Social networking sites such as myspace were great after Katrina. Friends could find out where other friends had evacuated to simply by reading each others’ myspaces.

5. Generator and Gas

A generator can power many things, including home computers! Check with your local generator supplier about any local laws about generators, how to safely and properly set one up, and how well they will work with computers. Because generators provide unstable power, a battery backup UPS and a surge protector are a must. Do not count on gas to power your generator being available in the aftermath of the storm. It’s best to have a good supply of gas as well as a few empty gas containers on hand.

Part II: Evacuating with Your PC

Like any family members or pets you may have, your PC isn’t something to leave behind if you can avoid it. While your first priority should be getting out alive, you should consider bringing your PC with you if you can room in your car. You can’t count on your destination to have good computers, high speed Internet, or any entertaining activities for that matter. Being in another place during a hurricane is stressful. Between watching your home town being walloped on CNN and The Weather Channel, the people around you as well as yourself will be tense and worried. Having a nice computer to browse the web with and play Battlefield 2 is a sure entertainer. In fact, the Internet was the only place where I could get information about my very neighborhood after the storm! Local newspaper message boards were packed with evacuees from all over my area and had plenty of information about damage to share.

Even if you can’t bring your PC, at the very least bring your hard drive with you! If your home is looted in the aftermath of the storm, the last thing you want is your personal data in someone else’s hands. Be sure your hard drive is in an anti-static bag to avoid needless damage to it.

If taking a long road trip, you should probably place some sort of padding or foaming (even a blanket will work) around your computer or hard drive to protect it from the vibrations of the car. Don’t bring your monitor unless you have an LCD and there’s room for it.

Part III: Leaving Your PC at Home

If you don’t have room for your PC in your car, don’t plan on staying with it during the storm. There are several safeguards you can take to prevent unnecessary damage to your computer:

1. Cover any open parts of your computer case (such as fans and vents) with tape.
Don’t use duct tape unless you want to risk taking paint off your case or a sticky mess.

2. Cover your computer with as many trash bags as you need. At least 2 trash bags per computer are recommended.

3. Consider how high your home is above sea level, the risk of flooding, and other factors.
If you know your home could flood, you should put your computer on the second floor. But if you know your roof is weak and could easily blow off, don’t put it on the second floor! Find an enclosed space with no windows (such as a closet) as close to the center of your home as possible. If your computer case has a side window, make sure it’s facing towards the ground or against a wall. If you can, place other objects around your computer to offer it additional protection from blowing rain and flying debris.

Part IV: When the Worst Happens

In the event your PC becomes damaged during the storm, don’t fret. If the damage is from a fallen tree or a piece of flying debri, there is nothing you can do. If your computer becomes flooded, however, there are steps you can take to recover it. Below is a basic guide on how to recover a flooded computer.

1. Do not turn on the computer! Make sure it is unplugged!
While you may be anxious to see if your computer can run, don’t do it if you know it’s been exposed to water. You’ll just end up causing more damage if you do. Remember to keep your computer unplugged.

2. Remove components that work.
If you can see a water line in your computer, take out all the components above it and put them in a safe place.

3. Let your computer dry.
Let your computer dry for a week or so. One drop of water in a running computer could mean disaster.

4. Remove the CMOS battery and other parts.

5. Use a solution of 90% alcohol or more to wash the various components of your computer, including connectors. If necessary, use a paint brush to remove stubbon crud.

6. Let your computer dry completely.

If the above doesn’t work or you have data you can’t risk losing on your hard drive, consider professional computer recovery. Do not plan on salvaging the power supply, CMOS battery, the hard drive, optical drives, or any fans if they have been flooded. Also remember to take pictures of any damage to your computer before you attempt to fix it for insurance purposes.

Hopefully this guide will help people save their computers from hurricane related damage. A computer is a very useful tool that should be part of any good disaster supply kit. Trust me when I say it’s an important thing to have around. However, remember a computer is only a material possession. Like all material objects, they can be replaced. Human and animal life, however, cannot. Use good judgement when deciding whether or not to take your computer with you and while repairing it if it damaged.

Disclaimer: In no way is the author responsible for any actions you may take to save your computer from a hurricane or fix it after flooding. Any actions you choose regarding hurricanes and computers are taken at your own risk. For the sake of all, please use common sense during any natural disaster.

Daniel Foster is the owner of PC Fastlane, a great place to find computer help, interesting articles, tech news, and more. [http://www.pcfastlane.com]

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Daniel_Foster/36006

 

A Guide to Refurbished Dell Computers

If you are looking into purchasing a new computer you would be remiss NOT to first consider purchasing a quality refurbished PC. Refurbished computers generally offer all the computing power, features and reliability you will need at a fraction of the price of a new one. Whether you are purchasing a first or second computer for home, buying for a school or school district, or a business looking to upgrade or expand, refurbished computers should be considered as an alternative to pricier new machines.

What is a refurbished computer?

A refurbished computer is any computer that has come from a working environment, be it business or personal, and has been reconditioned to like new condition for resale. This can include machines that were leased by businesses, schools, or government organizations and computers that are traded in by home users. Generally speaking the computers that make the best option for refurbishing and reselling are business class machines. Business class computers were designed with corporate users in mind and are developed to be reliable, upgradeable, and easily maintained. Quite simply these computers are built to work every day and every time, year after year. Examples of these computers include but are not limited to the Dell Optiplex line; including the Dell Optiplex GX150, GX240, GX260, GX270 and GX280. Other Dell business variations would include GX50 and GX60 machines and Dell Precision machines. The Dell Optiplex and Precision lines were designed with business in mind and are extraordinarily reliable, easy to maintain and upgradeable. Computers that were originally designed for the home user often do not come close to meeting the quality standards set by their business counterparts and as such should be considered to be a somewhat less desirable option.

Generally there are two distinct types of refurbished computers available, off lease and factory refurbished computers. Factory refurbished equipment has been retuned to the original manufacture, usually by a dissatisfied consumer. This equipment is then reworked by the manufacturer and sold as such; generally these computers come with a reasonable warranty, the original manufacturers guarantee, and a premium price. Off-lease refurbished machines are refurbished by the seller and not the manufacturer. Off-lease machines generally offer the same reliability, conditioning, options and warranties as those refurbished by the manufacturer but can often be found at a significant discount compared to factory refurbished equipment.

Where do refurbished computers come from and if they are so reliable why are they available?

Businesses, Government organizations and schools generally lease their computers and equipment for a period of time ranging from months to a few years. At the end of a lease many organizations opt to return this completely functional and useful equipment to comply with their accounting practices. You may ask why organizations would return completely functional equipment only to spend millions replacing it. The answer is simultaneously simple and complex, but in brief; most companies adapt accounting practices that devalue their computer and office equipment yearly as a tax benefit. Generally, at the end of three years, companies show that their existing equipment has no value and accept that the purchase of new equipment is merely a part of their accounting practices and not a waste of good equipment and money. Refurbished computers almost always come out of a clean, well maintained corporate environment. These computers are generally in a working condition, other than perhaps some minor flaws, or cosmetic damage. Other sources for refurbished computers include customer returns, floor or testing models.

How to tell if you are good candidate for a refurbished computer.

Refurbished computers are an excellent choice for virtually all but the most demanding power users. Many refurbished computers today can offer virtually identical performance as new equipment and at less than half the cost. It is important to ask yourself what kind of user you or your organization is. Those users who only want to work in Microsoft Office applications may have drastically different computing needs than people who want to play 3D games or edit video. Those of you who are into the latest and greatest computer games, video editing or CAD programs may need to invest in a new computer.

If you are purchasing for a business, school or government organization, very few users on your network will be power users. This gives you a great opportunity to save your organization thousands, if not tens of thousands of dollars, by supplying computers to your users that specifically meet their needs.

Home users generally do not need the latest and greatest in computer technology. Most home users are looking for solid internet access, the ability to edit photos, download music and play simple games, all of which can be easily handled by most refurbished computers. Home users who consider themselves to be power users can often tweak a refurbished computer to meet their needs and save hundreds of dollars in the process.

Most major manufactures offer potential customers the illusion that newer is better. In most instances this simply isn’t true, refurbished computers can meet the needs of virtually any user and at a fraction of the cost of new.

Copyright © 1995-2006. Brad Calli www.hcditrading.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Brad_Calli/38317

 

Industrial Single Board Computers

Single board computers are small circuit boards that have all the components necessary to function as a complete digital computer. We do not see them often and when we do, we have a hard time recognizing them. However, most of us must have used a single board computer in one form or another. These components are often embedded in cell phones, fax machines, GPS receivers and other electronic products that make use of computer technology.

Electronic products are not the largest market for single board computers. They find wider use in industrial applications. Such computers are called industrial single board computers, or simply industrial computers. They are used for a variety of industrial functions. Most of these computers are embedded in industrial machines that perform complex tasks, while others are arranged in a rack-mount format and are used for data acquisition and processing, as well as in product research and development.

Industrial single board computers are different than your regular home or office desktop computers. They are even quite different from other single board computers embedded in electronic products. These differences are dictated by their industrial functions. Industrial single board computers are usually designed to perform a solitary task, unlike desktop computers that are for multitasking. Because they are used in industrial processes, industrial single board computers are specifically designed to withstand various industrial factors such as shocks, vibrations, humidity, electromagnetic interference, radio frequency interference, dust, flash and mist.

Looking at the history, most industrial single board computers were initially manufactured in-house or by companies that use them. There are several reasons for this. First, industrial single board computers are often used for company-specific applications, so companies find it more practical to hire engineers to manufacture their own single board computers m rather than let another company manufacture single board computers for them.

Another reason is the lack of standards for single board computers, so the development in a particular single board computer does not necessarily affect other single board computers. Everything changed, however, when PCs began conquering the computer world. Shortly after the PC dominated the computer scene, standards for single board computers started to appear. These standards gave rise to the creation of off-the-shelf single board computers that conform to particular standards and can be programmed to perform specific tasks.

Because these single board computers cost less and are usually updated with new technologies, many companies have opted to use them rather than develop their own industrial single board computers. Some companies still opt for custom single board computers and purchase them from manufacturers rather than develop them in-house.

Single Board Computers [http://www.WetPluto.com/Embedded-Single-Board-Computers.html] provides detailed information on Single Board Computers, Embedded Single Board Computers, Industrial Single Board Computers, High Performance Single Board Computers and more. Single Board Computers is affiliated with Office Workstations [http://www.WetPluto.com/Office-Workstations.html].

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Kristy_Annely/44496