Monday, May 5, 2008

Take Home Message

I signed up for IT 101x because I wanted to learn more than just what left clicking does like the regular IT classes. I’m definitely glad I took it, I learned a lot more than I would have in the regular class. I also like how a lot of what we learned is applicable to the real world, like the excel projects. At first I thought Web 2.0 was just a lot of web applications that all serve functions that weren’t useful to me. After using Popfly, though I saw how useful Web 2.0 can be in the real world, and how it is going to have a huge impact on the internet in the future. I also thought it was exciting to see that we’re the first class to take advantage of this new technology and learn about it, and how Microsoft is so involved in helping us learn it.

My take home message is that even though people might be resistant to the changes in technology that are coming, in the long run these new advances are going to improve the quality of life for most people, just as the internet has done in the past decade. I think something that we could not be tested on is the way we use the internet. Given a problem, with our new knowledge of Web 2.0 there is a seemingly unlimited number of solutions. There is a number of different Web 2.0 applications that we can take advantage of now, that we could never be tested on our knowledge of them simply because they are changing and expanding everyday.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

CIS Presents - Meet the Majors

What is CIS

Software, systems, computers
Databases: cash, balances
Business applications or business services

Leonard Morrison, Executive Director of Corporate Relations – “CIS majors are among the most sought after year after year.”

Starting salaries between $52,500 and $102,000

Graduates go to: Deloitte, IBM, KPMG, Cantata Technology, Pricewaterhouse Coopers
CIS Major

  • Prepares for career as a technology expert
  • Provides immediate value for your employer by integrating business and technology into business
  • Focuses on application development, IT infrastructure, data management and modeling

Three courses: CS150 Introduction to Data and Information Management, CS 180 Programming Fundamentals, CS240 Business Processing and Communications Infrastructure.

Then CS 350 Data Management, CS360 Systems Analysis and Design.

Then six electives and you pick three. CIS Minor also available (formerly IT minor)

Saturday, April 5, 2008

I liked using because I can save my favorites if I'm on another computer. It's a good way to keep track of websites that might interest me. It's extremely simple to use and if you use the toolbar they offer it's even easier. Social bookmarking can be helpful for finding new websites that other people think might interest you, or just seeing what other people think is interesting. I will probably continue to use my favorites on my own browser, but if I want to save a website from a different computer I will use My link is

Using Twitter

I did not use Twitter on my cell phone because I do not have unlimited txt messaging. I never really talked to anyone about something they posted on twitter because it was usually nothing more than what they were doing at the time. There are privacy issues with Twitter because you might post something that you did not want someone else to see, but you might not know they were following you. I will not continue to use Twitter because I think it is one of the most pointless Web 2.0 applications. It is basically the same as using an away message on AIM, but instead it sends me an IM everytime someone puts up a new away message. If I wanted to know what someone was doing I could just check their away message. Not to mention it's another thing that I have to log in to in addition to AIM. Businesses can use Twitter as a marketing tool because it is an easy way to get a message out to masses of people. If there are a lot of people following them, they can send out a twit about a new product or promotion. People can also give them feedback immediately through Twitter. After using Twitter I can see that there are possible uses for it, but for me it is pointless and annoying. I really don't care if John is eating pizza 2 minutes ago.

Monday, March 3, 2008

CIS Presents - All Things Google

Some google applications:
· Google Earth - Gives a bird's-eye view of most of the surface of the earth
· Gmail - Google's own email application
· Orkut - Google's social networking application
· Google scholar - Search scholarly journals
· Google trends - The ability to search today's hot trends.
· Google books - Allows you to search entire texts.
· Google maps - Google's own maps and directions application
· Google desktop -Allows you to search your computer the same way you search Google, along with the ability to add Google gadgets to your desktop.
· Google documents - A way of sharing a document with other users to collaborate on the document together.
Ten things google has found to be true:
· Focus on the user and all else will follow.
· It’s best to do one thing really, really well.
· Fast is better than slow.
· Democracy works on the web.
· You don’t need to be at your desk to need an answer.
· You can make money without doing evil.
· There’s always more information out there.
· The need for information crosses all borders.
· You can be serious without a suit.
· Great just isn’t good enough.

1-800-GOOG-411 is Google’s response to 411 without a charge.

Google documents allows multiple people to collaborate on one document at the same time. You can use GoogleDocs to enter information into a spreadsheet with GoogleSets.

Google maps gives you an actual street level view of various locations where images are available.

Picasa is Google’s image sharing application.

Monday, February 18, 2008

I found the wireless access at Panera on Lexington Street. The SSID of the network was PANERA. There was no WEP key required because Panera provides free internet access to its customers. I think it is ok to have a wireless network when you are providing access to customers and you don't want them to have to enter a password to access the network. Businesses offer free access to draw customers to them because customers are more likely to come in and stay and eat there if they can access the internet. I can access the internet through Panera's free WiFi and anything I do won't be traced back to me. Panera does make you accept a user agreement (below) before you access internet through them. If it was a private home it suggests that the homeowner didn't protect their network by hiding the SSID or encrypting the network.

The network stumbler screenshot shows that I am connected to Panera's access point, but that there are six other access points available. The connection is strong though Panera's access point.

netstumbler shot

Panera's user agreement

us at panera

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Adware vs. Spyware

Adware is advertising that comes with freeware you download to your computer. Often times when you download a trial or a free version of a program, that program is sponsored by a company. That company sponsors the program to have the right to advertise on the program or in a pop-up window. A common mode of adware is through online poker programs that you download to your computer. A lot of college students play poker online using programs they download for free, and most of those programs come with adware either in the program or in pop-ups or both. With most adware when you close the program the advertisements go away, but sometimes a series of pop-ups appear instead.

Spyware is different from adware in that the ads you see are related to you. The freeware that you download tracks your activities and as a result you see ads that are more enticing to you. Spyware is similar to Trojans because you unknowingly download other programs that track your activities when you download another program. Spyware can monitor your keystrokes, scan files, install other programs, read cookies, change your homepage and send all of that information back to the author who shares it with advertising companies or sells it. Since spyware shares information with other parties I think spyware is definitely more dangerous than adware. A common medium of downloading spyware is through peer-to-peer sharing programs.

I think adware and software was brought about as a way of companies being able to offer free programs. I think adware came about first, and someone realized the potential for gain and began what is now known as spyware by selling information. Spyware authors benefit because they make money on selling the information they collect. Advertising companies benefit because they are able to send specific advertisements to different users to target consumers better and thus make more money. Some companies benefit from adware and spyware because it allows them to share trial versions of their programs at very little cost to them. They eventually make even more money back when people pay for the full version of programs.