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Monthly Archives: December 2017

Learn Computer Programming

The standard way of learning to program is to get admission into a college and get a degree in computer science. However, there are many who can never make it to college, despite having the skills and the talent for analytical thinking. I have written this article for those of you who never went to college but have discovered the beauty of programming and would like to master it on your own. This is possible today as Internet and the open source movement has created a programming culture online, which can guide you in the process. With self discipline and persistence, you can teach yourself programming and enjoy writing your own software.

How to Learn Computer Programming Without a College Degree?

Computer science is a tough field to master, but it can give you the most enjoyable and creative experiences ever. Here are a few guidelines on how to become a computer programmer.

Learn Programming Languages

Firstly, get hold of a desktop or laptop computer, which enables you to read and execute your programs. Programing is all about learning to communicate with your computer hardware to accomplish various computing tasks. Computer only understands machine language, written in 1s and 0s. For us humans, to communicate with computers, programing languages were created, whose code can be converted into machine readable form by compilers. There are a range of programing languages which vary in their applications and power. You will have to learn at least a dozen essential programming languages, which includes C, C++, Java, Perl, Lisp and Python.

Start Writing Code
The best way to learn is to practice what you have learned. Write your own code, make mistakes, learn how to debug code. Participate in coding competitions and test your programming skills. Get hold of open source software, read the code and understand how good programs are written. Learn how master programmers achieve economy of code and the logical clarity that makes great programs. Get to know your computer and the hardware basics. Learn how the computer works at the basic levels with memory and processors.

Learn to Run Linux or Unix
You cannot call yourself a programmer until you have mastered using Linux and Unix operating systems. Install a Linux distribution like Ubuntu on your computer and tinker around with it. It will provide you with all the programing tools you need, along with compilers.

Apprentice Expert Programmers
Let expert programmers take you under their wing. Find a good mentor who is ahead on the path of becoming a master computer programmer. Take advice and learn from them.

Read Code, Write Code and Keep Improving
Keep writing your own piece of computer code and keep thinking on how you could improve it. Join the open source movement and analyze the anatomy of good programs. Pick up your domain of expertise and go deep. Remember that there is always room for improvement!

Technology Changed Education

The omnipresence of technology is both outstanding and overwhelming. It has become our second nature that we use instinctively without even realizing how profound an influence it wields on the various aspects of our life. In this Buzzle article, we discuss how technology has changed one such important facet, i.e., education.
This millennium stands testimony to the fact that the human mind is one of the new frontiers that we are trying to conquer. Breathtaking technologies are being introduced almost every year, and it seems we’re on the way to make our life easier and more comfortable. Education – that is a reflection of the development of a society and is the foundation stone of the bright future of a nation that has undergone drastic changes in the last fifty years.

Positive Effects of Technology on Education

Talking in a positive sense, the impact of technology on education has been phenomenal. Using Internet and computers as en effective medium to establish communication between schools, teachers, students and parents; educational institutes have been able to handle many issues that were previously not handled with ease due to geographical limitations or lack of adequate training technologies.

Enhanced Teaching and Learning

Technological developments like digital cameras, projectors, mind training software, computers, PowerPoint presentations, 3D visualization tools; all these have become great sources for teachers to help students grasp a concept easily. It has to be understood that visual explanation of concepts makes learning fun and enjoyable for students.

Negative Effects of Technology on Education

Teachers and scholars across the globe have unanimously stood for integrating technology in education. This is owing to the fact that just like students, even teachers find it easier to circulate study materials by using Internet as a communication tool. Technological developments have made life easier for teachers and students. However, there are other aspects of this that most of us are not familiar with.

Poor Teacher-Student Relationship

Many teachers have a common complaint that negative habits of students are more exacerbated due to the use of technology. In countries like the US, where assignments and homework are required to be submitted online, students tend to forget common email etiquette like salutation and sometimes, even adding texts in the attachments! Moreover, the trend of last day submissions has now transformed into last hour, last minute submissions. Students submit their assignments even hours after the time for submission is over and their emails don’t contain any explanation or a note of apology.

A Brief Explanation of How Do Fire Alarms Work

Fire alarms are small devices that are triggered off when they sense smoke that enters a special chamber inside them. Read this article to know more about this topic.
True, these home security systems (home alarm systems) keep us safe from external intrusion. But what about the threats that lurk inside our houses all the time as we go about doing our daily chores? One such threat is fire.

What is a Fire Alarm?

A fire may break out in one room and then spread stealthily to other rooms without any noise or warning. By the time we realize, the raging flames may have engulfed the whole house. However, the device that amazingly gives us a warning signal against the break out of a fire is the small alarm that lies inconspicuously attached to the ceiling of a room.


There are mainly two types of smoke alarms (fire alarms) depending upon the type of detector that is used in them. The smoke detectors used are the ionization and the photoelectric detectors. Most fire alarms use either one or both the types.

Ionization Detectors

They have a small quantity of Americanum-241 that serves as the source of ionizing radiation. The alpha particles that are constantly released by Americanum-241 strike with the oxygen and nitrogen atoms in the air. This knocks off electrons from the oxygen and nitrogen atoms resulting in the formation of positively charged ions. Ionization detectors also have an ionization chamber, which houses two plates about a centimeter apart.

Photoelectric Detectors
In these devices, the alarm is set off once the straight path of light beam inside the photoelectric chamber gets disrupted by smoke particles. Photoelectric detectors have a T-shaped chamber that contains an incandescent bulb or an infrared LED, which acts as a light source. There is a lens in these systems that collimates the light being emitted from the light source into a beam. There is a photodiode or some other photoelectric sensor at the base of the vertical arm of the T-shaped photoelectric chamber, which acts as a light sensor. In the absence of smoke, the beam of light travels in a straight path without coming in contact with the light sensor.

Informative Points

Over 85% of the houses in the United States have fire alarm systems installed in them. Given this fact, the number of fire related casualties should have been way below the recorded statistics. Does this mean that most of the accidents caused due to fire take place in the remaining 15% of the houses that do not have fire alarms? This interpretation doesn’t sound feasible. The fact is that just installing a fire alarm does not guarantee safety from fire breaking out in the house. Once installed, these devices need to be regularly checked if they are in working condition to ensure fire safety.

Benefits and Action Plans for Green Computing

Green computing is the practice of using computers and related technology in an environmentally responsible manner. It aims at radically changing the way we go about computing, using the electronic devices and following strict energy conservation guidelines, so as to minimize the damage caused to the environment by computers. This activity is not just limited to saving electricity, but also takes a holistic approach towards environment-friendly use of computers. Devising innovative and environment-conscious techniques for energy generation is also one of its aspects.

Advantages of Green Computing
There are many innovative technologies and tools which make green computing a viable option for judicious energy usage and environmental conservation. The advantages offered by such technologies are discussed in these points.

Cloud Computing

Touted as a technology that could save substantial amount of energy, cloud computing involves replacing regular servers with the virtual ones. The different areas where cloud computing finds application include data storagenetworkingoperating systemssoftware applications. As per studies conducted by the WSP Environment & Energy, it is possible to save as much as 90% of the energy spent in a company of 100 employees. The AT&T-supported Carbon Disclosure Project reported that big US corporations can save as much as $12.3 billion (by the year 2020) if they resort to the use of cloud computing; server utilization too can be increased up to 80%.


Through this practice, we can save precious energy, time and money spent in manufacturing these electronic items. Resources used and money spent in manufacturing an electronic item from scratch are far greater than those needed for recycling it. Even in developed countries like USA, only a small percentage of discarded or used electronic items are recycled. France, which is said to be an ecology-responsible country collects only 14% of the e-waste generated in the country. Thus, there is a great scope for recycling electronic items and thereby, preventing environmental damage. Conservation of environmental resources, electricity and money can be achieved through this simple-to-implement step.

Turning Your Computers Off

The practice of switching off computers at night helps in saving a considerable amount of energy. The estimated amount of energy spent in a single year due to round-the-clock use of computer is $115-$160 (Schneider, 2008). Running your computer just 8 hours a day can help save 810 kWh energy on an annual basis. It is a myth that turning the computer off can damage it. Computers are designed for sustaining around 40,000 on/off cycles. Therefore, you need not worry about the computer even if you have to turn it off on a regular basis. The power supplied to scanners and printers should be cut off whenever these devices are not in use. This practice can also save a considerable amount of energy.