Archive | June, 2011

Technology and Me

29 Jun

Looking back, I think that I’ve never been a person with a particular fear of technology. Sure, we had our differences and misunderstandings – there were times when I was not far away from smashing my stupid something against the next best wall, but then again there were times when my technology and I lived in perfect harmony. You see, my feelings for technology fluctuated somewhere between a happy and an angry face – never reaching the level of horror as seen at Eduard Munch’s “The Scream”, though.

And as far as I can remember – I knew that technology was fun. Basically, because I knew that TV was my friend (since it showed ‘Tom and Jerry’ and other neat stuff on Saturday mornings) and because I knew no better purpose for my dad’s PC then to play ‘Lemmings’ on it. With passing years my collection of useful technology grew:  I had several video game consoles, a few digital cameras (I passionately lose whenever I get the chance to), and a little assortment of ‘handheld magic’, called cellphones. There were different shades of emotions I went through while growing up with technology, but even on the day, that I’ve lost every file that was saved on the hard drive of my first PC (because of some viruses that tricked my firewall and my anti-virus software), I have not felt terror.

Feeling respect for technology (for being a worthy opponent) – that was ‘das Höchste der Gefühle’, as Germans say, for me.

Consequently there was not much ‘fear’ to overcome with a little help from Bruce. However by being a good girl (aka doing the boring blog-homework-stuff) I learned something that’s as natural and important as the use of technology for human beings: The use of language. Continue reading

“Say Bye Bye to My Fear of Technology”

28 Jun

Few weeks ago, while writing my Blog post about the web browsers I met with this kind of question: which browser is the fastest and the best one? Also last time some of us were arguing about the same questions. Well, I’ve had enough of these unfounded arguments during the semester. That’s why I was eager to test it and now I have a great experience.

As we know, there is a speed war on the web. Browsers compete on many fronts: security, standards support, features and speed. Many organizations and users try to claim that their browser is the fastest. The Opera site claims that Opera is The Fastest Browser on Earth! The Mozilla site claims that Firefox 3.0 empowers you to browse faster. Apple’s Safari pages claim that Safari loads pages more quickly than any other Mac web browser. Internet Explorer users often claim that they use it because of its speed, as the alternatives take longer to start and load pages.

I present my research. This is an honest, get rid of fearing of technology, unbiased view. Unlike most people, I am not only testing all the browsers, I will compare them all on the same computer. Here are the specs of my test system, for comparisons and curiosity:

OS: Windows Vista (64-bit)

Processor: 2 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor

Memory: 1 GB

This, I hope, gives an accurate comparison, and also gives a fairly accurate comparison of the different optimizations for each browser.

The testing system

I installed completely fresh copies of the four browsers on my Windows Vista laptop, with all settings left to defaults. It’s the same system I used to test Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 3, Chrome and Opera 9.5, so I can make fair comparisons between all the browsers. It’s not scientific in the strict sense, but it’s meant to measure browser performance as real humans experience it—load, click, and wait. So, then I need a timer, and was preferred using Rob Keir’s simple but millisecond-accurate timer, I launched every action with a dual tap of the enter and “\” keys to set the timer, then tapped the “\” key again when what I wanted to load had arrived.

I re-ran the tests when I thought I’d been slow, and each score below is an average of three or more trials.

I timed each browser loading up “cold” load (straight off a system restart) and “warm” (having run twice already). I used a locally-saved copy of Google’s minimalist home page to negate net connection variations and to compensate for Vista’s start-up fickleness, timed each browser exactly two minutes after boot-up. So after few seconds I came up with these following results:

Test 1: Startup time—Winner: Chrome!

In cold loading, Chrome started up two times faster than Firefox or even IE 8.

Let’s check out the warm boots:

Test 2: Warm loading—Winner: Firefox 3!

A pleasant surprise that Firefox boots faster than others, as well as how quick Opera moves in general, at least compared to Chrome in this test.

Even though Chrome was slower at startup than Firefox or even IE 8, it’s less than a second of difference between them all.

So overall, Google’s new Chrome web browser beta is getting a lot of attention with its nice looking logo, helpful features, and better performance. Firefox is bit faster than Internet Explorer, except for scripting, but for standards support, security and features, it is a better choice. However, it is still not as fast as Opera, and Opera also offers a high level of standards support, security and features. Opera is also, in some points seems to be the fastest browser for Windows, and also is a clear winner using history… Of course, its poor standards and security clearly make it a much less attractive prospect.

Well, that is up to you. I am not going to tell this browser exactly the best one or something so similar, I learned during the test that everything depends on how you use your browser and what you use it for, and what operating system you use it on. Although there is also a little difference in using all these web browsers, most of the major browsers perform very fast, with very little to distinguish between them. So, the choice up to you.

References in easy way to test:

Good luck

The usefulness of using technology!

28 Jun

Half a year after finishing „Introduction to Business Information Systems“, which was quite a pain to me, I am now reaching the end of another rather technological course, “Business Application Systems”. As I said already, BIS did not arouse my passion for any activities dealing with PCs really, hence I was not looking forward to BusApps.

To be honest, I did not fall in love with technology this time either but I cannot deny I learned some very important, useful and frequently applicable skills in this course. Furthermore, I must emphasize it succeeded in demystifying cyberspace to a certain extent, which I had not expected prior to the sessions.

To depict how my development in regards to IT occurred, I ask you to listen to the story of my ascent along my learning curve up to my personal “knowledge plateau”!;)

Continue reading

Say Bye Bye To My Fear Of Technology

28 Jun

We live in the era of technology. Who can imagine their life without mobile phone or computer? I guess the answer would be: “Nobody”. However, we need also to know how to use technologies otherwise they, that are created to make our lives easier, are useless.

I belong to people who have a fear of technology. Everything what is connected to computer such as new applications or installations makes me immediately scared. In the same time I realized that it can’t last forever because if I don’t install a useful add or the program it can happen that, for example, all the data will be lost.

This is the reason why I decided to solve the problem with advertisings and banners that appear on my screen all the time and annoy me. In order to find solution I checked add-ons for Firefox, the browser I use. As we can see, Adblock Plus  has the highest rating and many good references. It was written that this add-on gives you control of the internet and customizes your filters. That is why I chose it.

I installed Adblock and restarted Mozilla Firefox. However, nothing happened. Then I restarted it again and again but it didn’t give any result. Usually, I felt myself helpless and gave it up. But not today. As Professor Bruce taught us, I asked Google. It helped me to find this video where you can find detailed explanation of the installation process and a link to the web-site with useful information.

After Adblock was installed on my computer, I chose a filter subscription “Easy list”. When I open my favorite Facebook the next time, I could click the right button, press “Block the image” and then “Add filter”. After that this advertising or image is blocked and won’t appear on your screen anymore.

It was my first small victory. I found out that if you don’t give up immediately and if you know where and how to search, there will be no problems anymore. I am looking forward to continue with fighting against my technology fear.

Say “Bye Bye” To My Fear of Technology – Cascading Style Sheets

28 Jun

After nine weeks of blogging, here comes the final post giving you a last insight on information technology in a business world. At this time I am going to talk technological, more than ever. You might wonder about the incentives I as a female have by wanting to write about such dry, male- dominant field of study. It has a simple answer: The actual aim of this blog post is to overcome my personal fear of technology or as they say: “Don’t fear technology. It can be turned OFF!”

So why not simply jump into the pool full of data, commands, and web complexity. The first information I came across while cyber diving was the WebWork PowerPoint provided by my professor Dr. Bruce. It basically was an introduction to various topics such as databases, templates, and plug- inns. If having to write about something complicated, I was more than happy to have the possibility to choose. And if so, why not choosing something I feel quite comfortable with – Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)! In general, CSS is a powerful web tool used to describe the formatting of a document written in a markup language (HTML, XML), or as Philipp Lenssen in a Quick Guide to Web Development summarizes: “CSS are the way to layout a page“!

For some of you, it is already clear what is meant by it. For those who do not: this is my attempt of breaking it down into simple terms.

Continue reading

Say Bye Bye to My Fear of Technology

27 Jun

When i saw the title of last blog post which we have to write, i immediately started to think about what i have done during this course, where i was at the beginning and where i am right now.

 First of all, i have  to confess that i am not such a curious person about technological changes around me. At least, i wasn’t ! Checking  emails,  taking a look at social networks , reading newspapers and something like that were pretty much all i used to do on the Internet. Of course it sometimes have worked to do my assignments as well . Continue reading

Read the Reader

27 Jun

After many weeks of exploring and getting to know the web, technology and IT in more detail than ever before, one major drawback or the thing that annoyed me the most, was the fact that I always had to keep track of the websites and blogs I was looking at, additionaly I sometimes failed to keep those in mind that could have been interesting to follow in the future. Soon i realized that there was (of course) something, that could solve all my problems, therefore I would like to introduce to you- the Google Reader.

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