Monthly Archives: July 2017

Are We Too Dependent on Computers?

A computer has been one of mankind’s greatest invention among other inventions ever since the foundation of science began. Its development was a result of years and years of long experiments spanning a hundred or so years conducted not just by one man, but many. Development of computers as it is today is a continuous process and it will ever be. Computers, however simple they may seem now to the computer literate, has a complex set of system underneath. It takes multiple disciplines in both computer studies and electronics to fully understand them. After all, computer in itself is subdivided into branches as is science itself.

While other technological inventions may have had already been developed prior to the foundation of science, “technology” is not yet a proper term for such. The word technology, after all, is always correlated with science and both science and technology are mutually inclusive to one another, strictly speaking in terminologies. Computers of today, however advanced they may seem, have had its origins in humble beginnings.

How did computer began?

Abacus, the earliest form of calculator, has been recorded to be in use since the early civilizations estimated to be around 1000 and 500 B.C., only to be adopted elsewhere in the world. The idea on how the algorithm of a computer does its arithmetic was based on this, in logic. Soon after, for as early as 1820’s, in the personification of Charles Babbage, dubbed to be one of the fathers of modern computer, developed ideas on how computers should do its math, initially known as the difference engine, it developed later after to become what is known as the analytical engine. While Charles Babbage, due to funding issues, didn’t get to see his ideas into fruition during his lifetime, it is his youngest son, Henry Babbage, who did so in 1910 based on his. However, this primitive form of computer is not as advanced as how we see on computers of today.

The idea of the need to do the computation on our behalf as man, hence the word ‘computer,’ came out of the need to handle complex problems and perform complex computations that is both difficult and takes longer time for man to handle. Especially true during the times of the industrialization era and great world war where the need for such arose. How a computer behaves is what’s in a library of a computer.

The development of computer grew by a lot since laying the foundation by Charles Babbage as was inspired by existing “technologies” of its time. From names of people of the past significant in the foundation of computers such as Ada Lovelace, Konrad Zuse, Alan Turing, John Atanasoff & Clifford Berry, Howard Aiken & Grace Hopper, so on and so forth, up to the present computer giant names such as William Gates, Steve Wozniak, and Steve Jobs, among others, computers of today are bigger in functions than they are their sizes and have found a spot in every people’s lives in both commercial and personal usage.

How do people use computers in their daily lives?

Modern day computers laid out the foundation on how we perform duties of today. It is a lot more efficient and makes the work done in shorter times. From a simple household leisure such is playing games or running multimedia programs, to doing office works, to a more difficult developing programs, up to a more complex computations such is done in NASA, computers made all this possible — all in a single box. What once takes a long time to finish in groups as in seen in companies without computers, can now be finished in shorter times with those.

Computers taking over the world

Also one of the most popular usage of computers is the internet. What once was the trend for telephones and telegrams, has become internet’s – and it is worldwide. Literally, computers taking over the world.
Although initially used for military purposes concurrent to the development of the computer, the internet grew up to become commercialized as it is used today. The internet, in conjunction to and other than the previous means, made communication around the world possible which also gave rise to communication tools such as the social media. To date, billions of people use computers with the internet every day.

Are we really too dependent on computers?

We may be are dependent on computers in relation to the internet given the information age we are in, since the computer age began. But such dependency was initially for a good intention – that is, to keep up with the demands of progress through the efficiency and rate the work demanded is done with computers as both our aid and tools. Let’s face it, there are complex works out there that can only be efficiently done if and only if we have computers. However, one should also ask whether such dependency is good for us. What if, by some chance, this technology called computers and the things it can do were taken from us? What then? Just like a bad addiction, computer dependency outside of our needs and moderation can be harmful for us, its users. An ideal tool for tyrants. While it may sound like it is out of context, it is not. In fact, we are as capable workers as our ancestors were without computers. Although obviously at a cost of the efficiency and ease we’ve known on how we do things with computers. These are not statements about abandoning computers as we know and use them, we’re just waking up with the idea of who we are without computers and who are ancestors were without those. No, we are not worthless without computers – we are not just as capable as someone who does and we alone are not capable as what a complex computer does as a computing machine. But do not be fooled, we are still the ones who made computers as they are today. In a way, we as a mankind is still superior to machines.

Now to the question, “are we too dependent on computers?” — the answer is, we are, at both misuse and discretion. Ultimately, how we use computer, as a technology, in our everyday lives weighs down on how we use it and for what purpose. Is it for the common good? Is it beneficial? In fact, these are questions also answerable by our own selves, as its users.

Online Computer Repair and Remote Virus Removal

I have been doing remote computer repair for people across the United States and around the world for nearly a decade, giving PC help to people with malware removal, virus removal, pop ups, or a slow computer. Online computer repair or online virus removal is definitely a time saver and a money saver. Remote virus removal can certainly save a person hundreds of dollars over the cost of taking the PC to a local computer repair shop.

Although using a remote online computer technician is definitely the way to go for PC help, nevertheless there are some pitfalls. I constantly hear horror stories from customers that had previously used an online computer repair service for their computer problems with less than desirable results. Consequently I have put together this list of computer scams to watch out for when contracting with someone to provide remote computer help.

1. USA Based – Really? Most people don’t want to talk to someone in India with an accent so heavy that you can’t understand them. That’s why many websites will say, “USA Based.” But are they really? I have found that many websites advertise they are in the U.S. but the person on the phone, who claims they are in the U.S. still sounds like someone from India. It is not wise to deal with someone who has just lied to you. Hint: Read the text of a website carefully. You will probably find one or two grammatical errors on sites that they are not really U.S. based, and of course, you will know instantly when they answer the phone. Just say, “Sorry, wrong number.”

2. Super Low Price: There are companies out there claiming they can remove viruses, plus fix any and all problems, and do a PC tune-up, all for the low price of $39.99. As someone who has been doing computer service full time for 24 years, I can tell you that it takes several hours for a PC tech to do all that and do it right. How can they do this for such a cut-rate price? There are three ways: 1. Hire a bunch of young geeks that are still learning and let them practice on your computer. 2. Be based in India or the Philippines or some foreign country where labor is cheap. 3. Do the very minimum to just get by without concern for conscientious quality work. Some places do all three. The old adage – “You get what you pay for.” Applicable to online computer repair. If you want good quality remote computer repair you need to pay for it. Try to save a buck and you can end up with a destroyed computer and/or many hours of frustration as you call back over and over to try to get the online computer help you were promised. Good Advice: If you want a good PC tech, don’t pick the cheapest bidder.

3. Certified – Really? Does the website tell you who is going to be fixing your PC? Are the name, credentials and experience of the computer technician posted on the website? I have called some of these supposedly Microsoft certified websites and when I asked exactly which credential was held with Microsoft and the computer service company could not give me an answer.

4. Free Antivirus Software: The online computer service company offers a free antivirus software after the repair. Be aware that they are only giving you something you can get for free yourself. Again, you get what you pay for. Free antivirus software might be better than nothing, but not by much. I remove malware every day from computers that are protected by free antivirus products and they are very infected. Only the antivirus products that you purchase are adequate. When a remote computer repair company gives free inferior products to customers it gives them a false sense of security that will lead to their PC eventually getting hit by a virus. A PC technician that is really looking out for your best interests will offer to sell you a quality product that works.

5. Free Scan Scam: Here’s how it works. You call a remote computer repair service because your printer doesn’t work. The online computer service says they will connect to your machine and tell you what is wrong for free, no obligation. Then you can decide what to do next. Free diagnosis! Sounds good, right? Lots of people fall for this. So the PC technician connects to your machine and runs a program (that they have created) that pretends to do a scan of your computer. In just 3 minutes this software reports hundreds of registry errors, dozens of problems in the event log, dozens of viruses, trojans and spyware. They tell you that you have got to get this fixed right away before all your files disappear and your computer won’t work at all. After the scare tactics, they give you an outrageous price of $300.00. After paying that and they supposedly fix all these errors, chances are your printer still will not work. But the real fact is – there is not a piece of software in the world that can tell you what’s wrong with a computer in a few minutes. I have over two decades of experience and I can tell you that it takes a couple hours of careful work to properly evaluate a computer. I have helped many customers who told me they had just experienced this scam. Fortunately they called me and in many cases their computer was not in nearly as bad a shape as they had been led to believe.

How to Keep Your Computer Cool

When your computer is on, nearly all of its components become hot. Constant exposure to high temperature can cause serious damage to your computer.

Here is a list of ways in keeping your PC cool.

Check if your fans are running.

This is the first step when you find your computer overheating. Open the case, and then check if all fans are still working. If at least one is not working anymore, consider doing repairs or getting a replacement.

Regularly clean your computer.

It is essential to regularly clean your computer, especially the cooling fans. The fans attached inside the computer case is used for active cooling of the computer. Over time, dust and dirt can accumulate in these fans. The accumulate dirt can slow down or, in worse, stop fans from working. If fans fail in expelling the hot air fast enough, some internal parts will eventually overheat.

To clean your cooling fan:

1. Shut down your PC.

2. Open the computer case.

3. If there is excessive dirt inside the computer case, take out the computer fan.

4. You can use compressed air, small electronic vacuum or duster, or damp cloth in cleaning the fan.

5. If you use moisten cloth, make sure that the cooling fan is dry or there is no remaining moisture before connecting it again.

Clean other computer parts as well such as the monitor, mouse, and keyboard.

Before cleaning any hardware component, make sure that your machine is turned off. Otherwise, your computer is susceptible to electrostatic discharge that can damage its parts and you are also prone to grounding yourself.

Before applying any cleaning procedures to hardware, make sure to check its manufacturer’s manual if they have provided you with the recommended instructions in cleaning or maintaining it.

Do not spray or spill any liquid directly in computer parts.

Do not limit the air flow around your computer.

Place your computer in a room that can provide sufficient air flow. Make sure that it is not sitting right next into other objects that prevent air circulation, like walls or other computers. There should be at least two to three inches of space on both sides. Since most of the hot air comes out from the air vent at the back end of the computer case, this part should be completely clear and open.

Move your computer to a cooler and cleaner environment.

Move your PC in a place with proper ventilation. It is important that the physical location will not contribute further heat to the computer. Make sure that your PC is not placed near a furnace, refrigerator, cooking appliances, and other things that can blow hot air or can transfer heat into your computer system.

How to Build a Computer and Component Selection

I get asked the same question very often, how to build a computer? It can be very deceiving to the average person’s eyes when they glance into an open computer. There are different “pieces” to be found and quite a few wires running around from one part to the next. All of this can be quite confusing and discouraging. The best advice I can give is that it looks more complicated that what it actually is. Don’t be afraid to do some trial and error to figure things out, within reason. Of course you have to be careful and not force components in spots they do not belong, but it is difficult to mix up as most things can only go one way, and will only fit in the correct location. Over the years it is how I learned most of what I do today, trial and error. One something goes wrong, there is always a way to fix it, and sometimes it just takes some patience and research to figure out a way to fix the problem.

I started building computers around 1996, when I was ten years old, and it became a hobby of mine which led into a business about 16 months ago. Over the years there has been a lot to learn and pick up on, and that is the thing with technology and computers. Computers are always changing and updating for more performance, reliably, smaller size, ease of use and less energy consumption in more recent years to become “green” on the environment.

But that is enough with the history, it is now time to move onto the actual computer building process from start to finish. There is quite a bit to cover and there are many ways to go about the process, but I will share my personal views and opinions along the way.

To start things off you have to ask yourself what you want the computer for. It could be a basic machine for simple web browsing, such as Facebook and E-mail. Another need could be simply for a media center, a computer hooked up with an entertainment center for movie watching purposes, music, recording, and internet television as well as any other uses hooked up to a television full time. The machine may be used primarily for gaming. A gaming computer can be a touchy subject as everyone’s views are different. Some may just be happy with playing a game on lower setting, and others may want everything turned up to the max with room to spare for future game titles. The final use I will touch into would be photo and video editing. A lot of times a high end gaming computer, and a photo/video editing machine will have many similarities. You do not necessarily have to have an extremely powerful system for videos and photos, but it will certainly cut down on the time required. If someone is looking to produce lengthy videos, it could take ages to accomplish on a less powerful computer. One thing I will say is no matter what you are looking to build a computer for, figure out a budget of available funds and go from there. There is no sense in looking at very costly premium components, when there is just no budget for it. Many would be quite surprised at how inexpensive a fairly powerful system can be “now days.” I never recommend to buy the latest and greatest as it will cost a premium and will be replaced by something better in around six months’ time. That is just how the computer world works.