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Archive for the ‘Tech’ Category

Is Freeware Lower Quality?

June 23rd, 2017
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Freeware is computer program that is available at no cost, or in other words, for free. Computer programs are generally very expensive, and some people spend more money on software than on hardware. While you cannot avoid buying hardware, you can avoid buying software by using freeware programs. This could amount to possibly thousands of dollars per year. The idea sounds great, but unfortunately freeware programs are often considered to be of lower quality. While it might be true in some cases, there are also high quality freeware programs which could save you a lot of money. Open Office is one of such programs and it is considered to be as useful as Microsoft’s Office. There are also many freeware firewalls like Comodo Firewall, which can protect your computer efficiently, and do not cost a dime. As a matter of fact, if you look around there are plenty of high quality freeware programs. Sites like download.com feature a lot of freeware programs and even have a ranking of most popular downloads. On the list you can find browsers, security programs, utility programs, chat programs, and many more. Some of the programs cost money, but have a freeware version that has slightly less features or has ads. I recommend freeware software to anyone who is on a budget, as it is better to spend money on hardware instead.

Tech, Web

Virtual Pets

July 12th, 2015
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Pets are creatures kept for companionship and enjoyment. While this term is currently reserved for animals, I believe that we may soon see people having virtual pets. There are already many games and programs that allow you to have a virtual aquarium, or to take care of a creature like Tamagotchi. What current games miss is the lack of sufficient intelligence of in-game creatures such as real dogs or other real pets have. Dogs may not seem that smart for people who never had a dog, but I am sure that dog owners know what I am talking about. Sometimes dogs can surprise with their intelligence, and this is something what artificial intelligence should aim for. Will it be an easy task? I do not think so, however, we have a lot of time to develop such technology.

Tech

Internet Filters

July 2nd, 2015
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There are many types of software on the market that offer net filtering services. Which one of them you will choose is definitely up to you. Analyze each one of them and decide which one suits you and your family the most:

-Black List Filters: With their help you will be able to block specific websites from being accessed.
-White List Filters: Those filters will only accessing the sites that are on the list. This is the most restrictive filtering service, because you will not be able to access most websites on the Internet. A white list filter should be only used if there is no need to browse the Internet, but rather visit just a few websites.
-Keyword or Content filters: Those filters will prevent you to access any website that has in its content a word, phrase, or image that does match the criteria from a keyword list. The only downside of this filter is that some pages might be denied by accident. This can happen, for example, if the site contained a blocked term but the term itself was used in a way that is not offensive.

As you see, there are many filters and it is up to you which one you will decide to use.

Tech, Web

Translate from Different Languages

October 19th, 2014
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To some people it might appear that the Internet contains only pages written in English. Of course, this is not true and there are a lot of interesting and useful sites that are Spanish, German, or French. Even if you do not know these languages you can still read such sites by using translation tools. My favorite translation tool is Google Translate as it can translate between over 20 languages including the ones that I mentioned. All you have to do is visit translate.google.com, and indicate from which to what language you want to translate. There is even a feature to detect the language automatically if you are not sure what language the text is. I benefited from this site a lot, and I know you will like it as well.

Biz, Education, Tech, Web

Abundance of Free Software

July 13th, 2014
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I think that it is quite easy to notice that there are more and more free programs available on the Internet. Free software is often very high quality and very often I refer people to use free software instead of paid commercial software. For example, there are some very reliable firewall software available, so why buy for something which might be lower quality? I think that this trend is a very good sign for an average consumer, because even if you don’t plan to use free programs, other companies will be forced to acknowledge competition. This may result in lower prices for paid commercial software and in the overall quality of programs being higher.

Tech, Web

Interactive Dialogues in Games

April 1st, 2014
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Some movies are known to have great dialogues. Just the only problem with movies is that as a viewer you do not have influence over the dialogues in any way. When it comes to computer games, the situation is completely different. The developers of games can allow users to choose what their in-game character will say, but I feel that they do not use this liberty as much as they could. To truly feel like you are your in-game character you need to have influence over the actions of your avatar, and this includes what he will say in specific situations. Games like Neverwinter Nights, or Knights of the Old Republic are examples of games that contain hundreds of pages of dialogues. At the same time, they allow the player to choose what he will respond to non-player characters. This adds a new dimension to games, because you are faced with many choices. On the other hand, movies do not allow you to make any choices. However, I believe that this may change in the near future. Would it not be exciting if there existed interactive movies that would allow you to make some decisions regarding the behavior of the main character in the movie?

Tech

How Well Is Your Life Organized?

February 14th, 2014
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One reason why many people buy a Personal Data Assistant is to be able to organize their plan of the day. You can easily fit your smartphone in a pocket, and use it in the subway or train. This is the reason why this small device is an excellent reminder of what else you have to do during the day. To make this even easier and more convenient, you can organize your smartphone desktop so that it will include categories like notes, tasks, calendars, business events etc. Start with very few basic categories and try to develop them as you go into more categories. If you wish, you can use a simple software that will help your organize your plan of the day like a calendar. Remember that by creating categories you increase your productivity and make your notes easier to find.

While not everyone might benefit from a smartphone, it is especially useful for those who tend to be late appointments. If you notice that very often you miss appointments or you are late for work, it means that you could benefit a lot from having a smartphone. These days smartphone are relatively inexpensive, and you can probably find a bargain on eBay.

Tech

Parachutes and Planes

February 14th, 2014
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Most of us have seen parachutes in movies, especially action movies. But what do parachutes have to do with planes? Let me explain why this post is entitled this way. Usually the only thing that parachutes have to do with planes is that they are stored on them, so that the crew on board can use them when necessary. But parachutes can not only protect people, but also planes. I was amazed to hear that there is a plane that uses a parachute to drift safely to earth, in case of emergencies. This parachute can be used in planes which are small and do not weight a lot, so do not expect those parachutes to become very popular and used by major airlines.

Tech

Multimedia Players

February 14th, 2014
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What features in your opinion should a HD multimedia player have? It can have a lot of features such as Ethernet, Wifi BG, digital and analog TV tuners, USB ports with USB host, an optical out, a lot of gigabytes of internal HDD, PVR function that would allow to record a video, RGB, S-VIDEO and HDMI output. As you see, the list of possibly features is very long, so basically you will need to decide what features are worth paying for. Most people would probably agree that the most important feature that makes some HD players so special is the ability to play almost every codec. There are a lot of codecs out there including avi, wmv, mpg, mpeg, mp4, asf, ts, ps, and many others. Taking into account that there are so many codecs available, having a device that can play nearly every codec can be really useful. Alternatively, if you just plan to play regular videos, then you may not want to spend a lot of money on a HD multimedia player at all. In any case, it is good news for consumers that there are better and better multimedia players on the market, because it should be getting easier to buy a multimedia player that you really want.

Tech

Who is Selling Your Pictures?

February 14th, 2014
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Sites like Flickr have been growing in popularity for the last few years. Taking photos and uploading them to sites like Flickr has been a hobby of many enthusiasts. Unfortunately, some people try to take advantage out of it, and are selling pictures taken from Flickr on sites like eBay. Usually, they claim that they are their own, which of course is not true. It is not easy to identify such people, and even if you are the one who took the pictures, it will not be easy for you to track each photograph you have made. Even if you are using some tool to detect duplicate images, it is easy to change the size of the picture by slightly cutting the bottom or right/left side of it. This way it should be impossible to track whether your photos are being posted anywhere else. Your best bet is to watermark your pictures.

Of course, if you are taking pictures simply for fun, then you are not going to lose any money because someone is selling your pictures. If would be a completely different situation if you were a professional photographer because people who downloaded your pictures from Flickr could undercut your prices very easily. That is because they would have no costs associated with downloading your pictures. I am not saying that sites like Flickr are a bad thing, but I am simply reminding everyone that it is easy for people to take someone’s work and claim it as their own.

Tech, Web