Technology by Teens

The latest Technology and Gaming News through the eyes of teenagers.

Friday, November 28, 2008


Kids and Computers - Merging Technology and Child Development

Developmental changes during childhood are most dramatic. It is during this time that we start to learn language, reasoning, self-awareness and the motor skills necessary to function as an adult. The learning experience we acquire during childhood contributes much the kind of person we are to become.

Several studies are being conducted on the role that technology may have on childhood development. Most of these studies focus on its possible benefits on learning, particularly that of the computers'.

By far, research has shown that computers, if used properly, can contribute to the enhancement of social, language and cognitive skills. One strategy used toward this end is by encouraging children to interact and work together. This can be done by placing computers close to each other, or putting two seats in front of a computer. You may also place one computer at a spot that would easily catch the children's attention. This will cause them to flock towards it. This strategy works because of the fact that computers are intrinsically motivating, with their colorful pictures and the interactivity they allow. The cooperation and interaction this strategy fosters can contribute to the children's self-concept and learning attitude. The children also learn leadership roles and have shown to initiate interaction more often. This even improved their spoken verbal communication.

A unique feature of the computer is that it allows actions and representation that may never be made possible in the physical world. This allows for manipulation of variables such as chemical components that may not be accessible in real life and that may be hazardous to the fragile little children. The computer allows for a bolder yet safer approach to learning.

Studies have also shown that traditional learning activities coupled with a computer is more beneficial than using either one alone. Children from ages three to four who were taught in a classroom setting coupled with a computer proved to gain more in conceptual skills, verbal and nonverbal skills, abstraction, and problem solving. Third grade children who combined traditional methods with computer programs showed more sophistication in the way they think and reason.

Computers can also provide a new twist to learning something that children already know. The new motivation that the computer offers can lead to a renewed self-direction. Children who already know how to read may be encouraged to improve their vocabulary through fun and interesting word games made available by computers.

Some child advocates are claiming that the encouragement of computer use among children is paramount to the encouragement of a sedentary lifestyle. Computer use advocates, on the other hand, are responding by emphasizing that this can be easily addressed by simply moderating its use, just as we should never allow children to watch too much TV.

While technology can never replace essential activities that require actual human interaction such as story telling, reading together, classroom discussion, or playing in an actual setting with other children; there are boundaries we can cross that only computers can make possible. We need only to use it properly.

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Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Should You Buy an LCD Monitor Or an LCD TV?

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Lately businesses are buying large format (>32 inch) LCDs for video conferencing, boardrooms, receptions, and for a number of applications such as retail showroom advertising and surveillance. A key question being asked is whether they should buy an LCD monitor (also called LCD information display panel) or an LCD TV. Some people think that an LCD TV is an LCD monitor plus a TV tuner and they are surprised to find that an LCD monitor may cost more than an LCD TV. For them, it just doesn't make sense.

Here's what is an LCD monitor and what it is not:

A better image for LCD monitor: An LCD monitor produces higher quality images and has high brightness and contrast levels as well. An LCD TV is likely not going to offer the same resolution as an LCD monitor! This is could be very important when viewing data.

A longer-life more rugged-dust proof system: An LCD monitor is a closed end device with no fans and moving parts. An LCD TV usually has a fan, is not a closed box and may have moving parts. Most LCD monitors can be operated on a 24/7 basis however LCD TVs can not and the numbers of hours that an LCD TV can be operated should be checked. Typically LCD monitor has a life of 50,000 hours or more.

An LCD monitor can be operated 24/7: An LCD TV cannot and built for max 6-8 hour continuous operation.

Are you looking to connect displays together for advertising effect? An LCD Monitor can be easily connected together to create a video wall. The bezel can be removed and the gap between the monitors can be minimal and there are connection outlets in the monitor so that an image can be displayed across monitors to seem as one large image. This cannot be done in an LCD TV. LCD Monitors can be connected in a mirror image format so that the same image appears in all the monitors at the same time.

Lower energy consumption: The energy consumed by LCD monitor is very less and since the electro-magnetic radiations emitted are also less, it is also less hazardous to health.
Monitors can be networked: An LCD

Monitor can be connected to the network and remotely controlled and monitored. As a business anyone would want to know which monitors are working and which are not from one central location so that a technician can be dispatched to take care of faulty monitors and this can easily be done incase of an LCD monitor. Further networked LCD monitors allow for remote content management and scheduling as well which is an added advantage for big businesses.

Should you buy an LCD monitor vs. LCD TV? Consider the different variables and make the knowledgeable choice.

For more information on LCD monitors check out LCD monitor sites such as Sharp, NEC and Samsung.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Electronic Mail Joke Passing Etiquette

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E-mail is a great way to keep in touch with friends, family members, and coworkers. Many people love to do so by forwarding jokes to dozens, if not hundreds, of their address book contacts.

Before you become the humor distributor, please, PLEASE read the below etiquette suggestions, lest your e-mails may just find their ways to peoples' virtual trash cans. Even worse, some people may stop reading your e-mails altogether if you don't follow these guidelines:

1. Always give your e-mails subject lines or they may never be read, and some people may begin ignoring all your e-mails entirely.

Be as descriptive as possible, though don't go overboard with multi-sentence subjects. You may want to consider starting subject lines with the word JOKE: or similar to let busy individuals know the e-mails aren't urgent, but some people may have filters that automatically trash such messages.

2. DO NOT WRITE YOUR JOKES IN ALL CAPS! 'Nuff said. Many people find this hard to read or consider such e-mails as "shouting". Again, send too many of these e-mails and you'll start getting ignored.

3. When sending e-mails to a group of people, use your e-mail website or software's BCC (blind carbon copy) feature instead of using the CC (carbon copy) feature. This hides the recipient addresses from each other.

If I see an e-mail that was sent to 100 different people I'm much less likely to read it. Plus, blind carbon copy increases privacy as some people on your homegrown list would rather not have their addresses sent out to possible strangers.

4. Planning on sending jokes from the office? Your boss and IT staff can, and sometimes will (depending on company policy), read your e-mails! Avoid tasteless humor in the office. If you're planning on sending a message with questionable taste, use your personal account from home and make sure to send to other peoples' personal e-mail addresses. Better yet, don't do it at all.

Note that e-mail can be permanent - just because you delete a message doesn't mean it is gone forever. You don't want to be remembered 10 years later for sending a tasteless e-mail message!

5. Never send e-mail attachments without first notifying the recipients that files are coming. Many spam filters, including those at the office, are deleting e-mail attachments without warning, and I personally will never open an attachment unless I am aware one is about to arrive. This is because the "from" address in e-mail messages can be easily spoofed. Plus, e-mail accounts can be hacked, allowing nefarious individuals to send e-mail, complete with malware-laced attachments, from other peoples' accounts without their knowledge.

6. If a joke has been forwarded multiple times, please remove all of the annoying forwarding brackets ">", else the message may become too confusing for people to read. It won't take that long to do, and if you want, there's even a website called Mr. Ed's E-Mail Bracket Stripper that can help do the work for you.

7. If a joke or fact sounds too-good-to-be-true, it just might be. Check first to see if your e-mail is an urban legend by visiting the Snopes website.

Electronic mail does not have to be all work and no play (though it probably should be at the office), and occasional jokes provide a welcome diversion from the day-to-day humdrum. However, passing around jokes without following these etiquette rules might annoy people and get you ignored. Use a subject, AVOID ALL CAPS, and use blind carbon copy when sending to a group. Think twice before sending tasteless humor from the office or distributing file attachments. Remove extraneous forwarding brackets, and don't be the person everyone talks about that always sends out urban legends thinking they are true. A little etiquette can go a long way, and minding one's manners can help keep your e-mails read and enjoyed for years to come.

Copyright 2008 Andrew Malek.

Andrew Malek is the owner of the MalekTips computer and technology help site at . Whether you're new to the Internet or a seasoned pro, MalekTips offers advice on topics including how to get the most out of search engines, unique websites to visit, and how to stay safe online including electronic mail tips at .

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