Monthly Archives: July 2016

Different Forms of Social Media

unduhan-14Technology has advanced multi fold over the past few decades, and transformed how we perceive the world’s means of communication. It is a step up from the other types of media, also known as ‘industrial media’ or ‘traditional media’, like the television, documentaries, the newspaper and radio. Social media, in other words, comprises everything that has to do with the Internet. People for many years have relied on mediums from print and electronic media, to reveal happenings on another part of the globe. Be it news, entertainment or movies – it was never really within the reach of people, on a one-on-one basis. Now with the Internet, we surpass borders and blend in with other cultures and new worlds. We can virtually reach out to people worldwide within seconds, with web services now available on mobile phones and other web enhanced devices. The world shrinks down when the Internet comes into play, with its different forms of social media that have influenced present generations.

Different Types of Social Media

The various forms of social media that exist today, come under a vast umbrella of different kinds of communication. This form of mass media, can be for interactive, informative, educational, or promotional.

Blogging
Blogging is a very common feature of the Internet, which allows users to create their own blog domains to put up self-made information. These can range from topics related to music, private/public diary entries, recipes, religious write-ups, news, medical information, travel tips, product reviews, latest gadget updates and so on. One doesn’t need to be a professional, or require any kind of expertise, but genuine deep knowledge of what he/she is talking about. Blogs are enhanced with capabilities like video/photo uploads, widgets, podcasts, streaming live radio, advertisements on products/services and so on.

Event Updates
Websites cater specially to bands/solo performers/artists (painters)/social event planners and so on, allowing them to update their information with event dates and current happenings. It gives people an interface to buy tickets online, or travel to places to be a part of the event. It acts as an online calendar of events for those who actively browse the Internet to attend events locally/nationally/internationally.

Social Networking
Social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook and MySpace, give people worldwide a place to put up pictures, videos and interact with friends/family at any time and place. You can add friends, join groups, attend events, buy tickets, play games, search for old school/college friends, chat and more. Every second person owns an account, and now teens and older adults are fast catching up with this trend of keeping in touch with others online.

Emailing/Chat
Websites like MSN, Yahoo, AOL, Gmail and so on, give users a chance to email one another while situated anywhere globally. It is an instant way of keeping in touch with those who are out-of-town, and can be used for one to be a part of business interactions or other communication based reasons. It is easy to use, and doesn’t require in-depth knowledge on how to use it. They also come with their own messengers meant for chat sessions and webcam viewing or even web conferencing. Online chat rooms are a popular feature of social media as well. People can access this service through their cell phones or any other device that can avail from Internet access.

News Updates
News channels have created their very own official websites to allow those on the run, to view the latest in news and stories worldwide. Companies like CNN and BBC, not only showcase news and live footage, but provide a platform for users to give their opinions or start discussions, even forums. Articles related to science, medicine, technology and entertainment are featured as well.

Photo/Video Sharing
Users can upload photographs taken from digital cameras or cell phones, and put them up on websites to share with friends and family. Videos too can be uploaded and viewed through search engines that recognize video ‘tags’ and produce results based on what one has typed in. It also records how many hits a video gets, increasing your visibility and viewer ratings.

Music and Radio
Live streaming from online radios worldwide are featured on websites with hundreds of radio stations available on the web. People can listen to the latest from online music, and access genre compiled music collections along with downloads available that are either free/to be paid for. Bands and artists have their own official websites as well to promote albums, sell their merchandise and even provide concert tickets for fans.

Gaming
Gamers are free to access websites that host the latest in games, along with old school video games that are now available online. Competitions are also encouraged, with downloads and information on the latest games out in the market. These virtual interfaces are teeming with games that are just as cool to play with, like that of PS3, Xbox 360 and hand-held devices.

These different types of social media, are becoming more advanced as time passes making people turn to the Internet for anything and everything. Social media also provides users to indulge in Internet shopping, allowing you to buy anything from a car to bidding for products. There are even university faculties interacting with students for online courses, giving them a chance to receive certification from these universities from foreign countries. Often people are confused about whether or not social media can be considered a part of electronic media. We clear this doubt in the next section.

Difference Between Social Media and Print/Electronic Media

There are different types of mass media that come under what’s conventional and been around for centuries, namely the radio, television, newspaper and other types of print media. Find out how these two contrast one another, while still providing what audiences need in terms of information and knowledge.

Social Media Industrial/Traditional Media
Doesn’t require one to have any professional training when providing information online like – blogs, forums, polls, video uploads, photo sharing, emailing and so on. It is based on practice and constant use. This media requires one to have some knowledge / experience of the medium, with training and special skills.
Large-scale audience and reach. Large-scale audience and reach.
Available to users at a reasonable rate, or even free. Needs to be privately / publicly owned, before production can actually take place to be available to the people.
Information can be changed / edited / altered as and when the user wishes to. Once information is printed or given out, it cannot be edited or changed.
Social media is a quick interface, which updates itself within seconds and is accessed on the same day an event takes place. The time lapse is longer, and not as instantaneous as that of social media.
Shelf life isn’t an attribute in the case of social media, since these files are saved either on websites, or on one’s personal device. Takes up space, and needs to be physically accessed, as opposed to being a mouse click away.
More digitally enhanced, and constantly streaming with up-to-date feedback and footage. Mediums like radio and television can update news on the spot but cannot be viewed again like that of the Internet. Interaction is congested when viewers are asked to participate in discussions or forums, whereas people find it convenient to do so online instead.

These forms of social media are now becoming increasingly convenient for people to access, from the comfort of their homes. Whether it is ordering for take out, booking tickets for travel or shopping at home without having to go down to a mall – users are finding it easier to get everything they need, a mouse click away.

Interesting Topics of Conversation to Have Anytime, Anywhere

Be it a conversation with friends, colleagues, or people you have newly met, at times, you are left with just nothing to talk about. Or it so happens, that you can’t think of any good conversation topics and that brings an awkward silence in the communication. Everyone in the group then starts expecting someone else to start a conversation and a discussion that could have been fun, never even begins.

Conversations are so important, you know? It’s through them that ideas evolve, it’s because of them that cordial relations are maintained, and it’s due to them that conflicts can be resolved. Conversations enable a healthy exchange of views, they help bridge distances, and allow the building of friendships. It’s through conversations that we get to know people, we are able to socialize, and we can establish a connect with those we like. Here we give you topics that help you start a conversation and also make it interesting.

What makes a topic of conversation interesting? Well, it should invite wide participation, which is to say it should interest the majority. For this to happen, it should be chosen based on the age group and interests of the people involved and depending on the rapport they share with each other. Discussing a trending topic or something that is currently making the news, mostly invites a good participation, as everyone is likely to know about it. Travel experiences, incidents of having met new people, narrating amusing experiences in one’s life, or information about things less known, make for interesting conversation topics. Similarly, based on the age and interests of the group, topics related to sports, celebrities, technology, science, or philosophy can be brought up.
It’s very common to start a conversation with a “How are you?” and then proceed to asking about one’s favorite book, movie, travel destination, and the like. But to give an interesting start to the conversation, some questions like these could help. Here you go.

✦ What’s the meaning of your name?
✦ Who is the most influential person in your life?
✦ Which historical figure, famous personality or book/movie character do you best identify with and why?
✦ What kind of music do you like or dislike? Why?
✦ Where would you never like to go? Why?
✦ Have you had a life-changing experience? What was it?
✦ What is that one thing you can’t live without?
Or use questions like these.
✦ How would you describe your childhood?
✦ Who in your family or friend circle are you the closest to and why?
✦ What’s your idea of a perfect holiday?
✦ If you suddenly get a day off, how would you like to spend it?
✦ Where do you see yourself in another five years?
✦ Whose company do you enjoy the most?

If it’s a group of strangers or if you are initiating a conversation with someone you have just met, you will have to first understand their interests through questions like what their hobbies or fields of interest are. Then, based on their age and where they come from, you could start a conversation on politics, business, economics, sports, entertainment, or safer yet, a topic that’s in the news.

To begin a conversation, you could narrate an interesting incident in your life or a funny story you have read/heard. This helps you invite the group’s interest. Or you could voice your opinions on something and then invite their views on the same. This allows everyone to take part in the conversation and makes them feel involved. Asking open-ended questions or giving them a situation and asking how they would react, can also make a conversation interesting.

Recent developments in science and technology make good topics of conversation. A new research or study, new scientific discoveries, recent developments in technology, new gadgets entering the market, new apps, websites worth visiting or a new product and its features and cost-effectiveness in comparison to its competitors are some other interesting conversation topics.

For a conversation with colleagues, you could talk about the organization’s goals, ask them about their work and share what you do, if you belong to different teams or departments. You could discuss your current and upcoming projects and get to know theirs. A good knowledge sharing or understanding of each other’s roles in the organization leads to an interesting as well as a fruitful conversation. For a pep talk with your team, ask the members about their work, whether they like it, invite their suggestions on improving it, if applicable, and ask them to voice their concerns in case they have any. In a conversation with colleagues, strictly avoid discussing your or anyone else’s personal life. Also, do not entertain gossip.

Initiating an interesting conversation is one thing and maintaining a healthy one is another. To keep everyone interested in the conversation, it is important to be a good speaker as well as a good listener. Especially so when people of different age groups are involved or when everyone does not know each other very well. After having made your point, you should be able to invite the views of other participants, and through your tone and body language, make everyone feel included. While some have the knack to quickly pick up a point and enter a conversation, some others may lack the skill. While some are confident, some might be shy. You should be able to identify this and shape the conversation accordingly. You should be able to maintain the pace of it and keep it going. Topics that may hurt someone or those in which everyone may not be able to take part, should be avoided.

These interesting topics and suggestions should help you start and maintain a good conversation with people you know or those you have just met. Actually, it’s your will to make a conversation interesting that drives you to think of interesting topics too. So go ahead, choose one of these topics or come up with some of your own. Happy talking!

Uses of Computers in Society

Computers are, perhaps, the best invention by man so far. To understand their impact on society, we will first have to understand their meaning. A computer does not necessarily mean a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and a CPU. It is any machine or device that can compute and execute instructions given to it in the form of programs. So technically, even a cell phone is a computer. And so are desktops, laptops, tablet PCs, and PDAs. It includes anything that can perform a series of operations on its own. This gives us an idea as to how wide and deep its role is in our lives. We need this device for virtually everything. In the subsequent paragraphs, we will enlist all the applications and uses that these devices have in our society.

List of Applications

The evolution of this device started at a crazy pace and is still on. It started with calculators and punched cards, and moved to vacuum tubes, and then the transistors and printed circuit boards. In the paragraphs below, you will find a detailed list of their applications in various fields.

Science

One of the most important advantages of this machine is in the field of science for research and development. It has played a major role in most of what we know about ourselves and the universe. The satellites, the telescopes, and almost all the research tools use it in some or the other way. The huge calculations required for space science, safe communication between scientists, storage of all the gathered information, etc., are some of its uses in science and technology.

Medicine

They are used for diagnosis and cure of many diseases. For example, the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), CT scan, ultrasound devices, etc., are amongst the most ubiquitous uses of this device in hospitals. It is used in many surgical procedures, like a laparoscopy. Video conferencing software helps doctors deal with patients in remote areas.

Education

Its uses in this field are infinite. The Internet is a huge source of information. There are online universities that deliver online degrees, and distance learning is spreading far and wide. Many schools and colleges have started making use of audio-visual ways of imparting knowledge. There are a horde of online tools and methodologies, which help students in many ways.

Banking

The banking sector has improved on fronts, such as security, ease of use, etc. Most of the banking operations can be done online, known as Internet banking, and you don’t have to walk up to the bank for virtually anything. You can withdraw money from ATMs and deposit money in any branch, thanks to the networking effected by the use of this machine. The complete banking experience has also become more safe.

Crime Investigation

High-end devices have ensured that justice is more effective. CCTV cameras and other security systems have reduced the amount of crime. There are many ways to track down the criminal in no time. Forensic science uses it for many of its operations related to investigations.

Entertainment

The field of entertainment has been revolutionized. Animation, graphic image manipulation, etc., has made the entertainment experience hundred times better. The gaming software is achieving new landmarks in terms of technology. Movie making, editing, music composition, etc., everything is based on this machine.

Sports

The watching and analyzing of sports has become very easy. Sports media outlets use laptops and such devices everyday to complete research, edit videos, update relevant data, etc. Videos help players to be better prepared for their matches. Statistical data storage and equipment development has also been tremendously simplified.

Advertising and Social Networking

There is no limit to the usage of this device for these fields. Advertisers use it to create layouts for their clients, while ad agencies use it to present their completed work. Besides, it is used for creating designs, writing scripts, managing accounts, marketing, preparing and advertising ads, contacting clients, and maintaining spreadsheets of huge data. Social networking is as important as your bread and butter in today’s world. You desperately need the social media, like Facebook, Twitter, etc., for effective everyday communication, exchanging news, relaying important information, making contacts, etc. It is also tremendously useful for activities like fundraising during natural calamities, like floods, famines, earthquakes, and tsunamis.

Government

In the government, this gadget is used for controlling equipment, launching weapons, maintaining crucial data, etc. It has also simplified the task of maintaining thousands of records.

Stock Trading

People buy and sell stocks every day, every minute. These machines are extensively used in stock marketing. They are used to maintain, buy, and sell orders. All decisions regarding the stocks are made by them. If you go into a stock trading office, you can see the enormous amount of dependence that this field has on these devices.

Ticket Reservations

Once upon a time, long, long ago, we had to walk to the railway office to buy a ticket. And then wait for an eternity, to understand if there are seats or not, is there a train or not, and the like. Now, all you need is a click! Airline or railway or private cab, all reservations are done online due to this wonderful machine. Travel has become so much easier. Even movie tickets are booked online, saving a lot of time and money.

Military, Navy, and the Air Force

In the military, these systems are used to store confidential information. They are used to develop, test, and debug important programs. They are used as a surveillance equipment to check the enemy territory. In the navy, they are used for logistics, personnel, and pay records. They are used in the applications of SONAR and RADAR, for example, in tracing lost airline debris or sunken ships. For the air force, they are used to develop standardized tools and interfaces in accordance with the Air Force Network Operations (AFNETOPS) guidance to transform raw data into actionable C2 information. They are used to develop, test, and analyze crucial programs with regards to the working mechanism of different kinds of airplanes. They are used for information processing, storage, and rescue operations.

Meteorology

This electronic appliance helps to predict atmospheric conditions and in weather forecasting. It simulates new experiments with the atmosphere and condenses large amounts of data.

Business

Again, as mentioned before, its use in advertising has helped business scale new heights. Large volumes of information can be stored and many records can be diligently maintained. It is used in communication, storage, accounting, marketing, and documentation.

Book Publishing

In the earlier decades, publishing a book would have been a tedious and long task to accomplish. Not anymore. All communication is carried out through this machine. A part of the book can be published online to gauge people’s reaction. The social networking sites can be used for promotion. Different tools can be used for writing, editing, and publishing the manuscript. The sale can be covered online as well.

Space

These machines are a great asset for space exploration. It is because of them that we have understood the universe, the planets, the Earth, the geographical aspects, and the topography.

Agriculture

The use of laptops in the agro-based industry have given a boost to the GDP of the nation. They have helped in assessing farmland, automation of equipment, and various other software, which have helped to revolutionalize this field into a profitable one. Through social media and online forums, a farmer can connect with his suppliers and clients, and even gain a lot of knowledge about his farm produce. There are many other applications in this field that have proven to be a boon to the farm workers.

Research

Scientific, business-oriented, education, space, or any kind of research would have been impossible had it not been for this outstanding invention. It has made gathering and analyzing data, performing experiments, etc., very easy. It is used extensively in this field, for researching topics that are spread far and wide.

Daily Use

An amalgamation of the above uses, the applications of this device in everyday life is also commendable. It helps us listen to our favorite music, watch videos, chat with our near and dear ones, research topics for projects, learn new things, store important data … the list is endless.

This is only the tip of the iceberg, as we can’t even imagine the ubiquity of computers in today’s life. However, this technology has also given rise to many vices, like identity theft, hacking, etc. One needs to use it only for a good purpose, and not misuse it. But the truth remains the same – the advantages supersede their disadvantages with pride.

How Flying Cars Will Work

unduhan-15For over a hundred years, right from the time when airplanes were invented, people have worked on inventing a ‘flying car’. It is only now, when science and technology have reached greater heights, that the dream of the common man owning his own personal air vehicle seems to be plausible. One of the biggest proofs of this new reality is the stamp of approval given by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the mass production of Terrafugia’s personal air vehicle, Transition. So to know how exactly this personal air vehicle will work, let us start from the basics.

Basics of Flying Cars
A flying car, as the name implies, is a vehicle that can be flown in the air and used on the roads. That means, it obviously has to have the basic characteristics of an aircraft (like propellers) and a car (like road tires). It would have to be light enough to fly in the air and strong enough to move on the road. Because a flying car would have the ability to land and drive, it would have to be able to take the impact of hitting the road and then moving on it uninterrupted, smoothly. Besides, it would have to be installed with additional safety features before being released for the public use.

Working of Modern Flying Cars

Though we commonly use ‘flying cars’ and ‘roadable aircraft’ as synonyms, they have a slight difference (which is easy to spot). Flying cars are cars adapted to fly while roadable aircraft are aircraft adapted to be used on the road. The inventors of the early flying cars worked more on adapting a car to fly in the air while the recent inventions of flying cars have been in adapting an aircraft for asphalt roads.

Whatever may be the case, a modern personal air vehicle will need to have the following modified features (all related to the basics discussed before):

Engines
These engines should have enough horsepower to lift the vehicle into the air and at the same time, be capable of providing controlled power for the vehicle to move on the road. The flying car will need to have an extra engine, if there is an engine failure during a flight.

Aircraft Propellers
Because the vehicle will be flying, it will obviously need the propellers (aircraft blades and wings) found on every aircraft. But as these wings will not be needed on the roads (obviously), they will have to be either easily detachable or foldable.

Landing Gear
To land the flying car on the ground, it will have to be fitted with the essentials found in the cockpit of a normal aircraft. It would have to be able to take the impact from the road and be able to balance itself to be used on the road.

Material
Needless to say, a flying car will have to be lightweight, yet have adequate ground mobility. While on the roads, a vehicle is more likely to be damaged but a slight damage on an aircraft can prove to be dangerous. So the material used in a flying car should be both light and strong.

Design
A road vehicle needs greater flexibility than an aircraft. An aircraft needs to be aerodynamically designed for better flight. The conclusion? A flying car should be small enough to fit on the road and big enough to fly. The requirements increase if the said personal air vehicle has to be parked in a house garage!

Fuel
If the oil crisis of the 90’s hadn’t occurred, Ford Motors would have marketed the world’s first flying car (Fulton’s Aerocar), at that time. The point here is, with the increase in fuel prices and decreased availability of fuels, a flying car will have to be run on eco-friendly, safe and inexpensive fuel, for better success in the market.

Safety Features
The reason aircraft manufactures haven’t invested much in trying to offer low-cost private aircraft has probably got to do something with safety issues related to flight. Air accidents are more dangerous and fatal than road accidents. So if the inventors of a flying car are aiming the market of the masses, they will have to make it safe. For that, they will have to include features like safety cages, air bags, parachutes and/or crush zones, etc., (yes, they will still have to watch their flying car’s weight!) in a personal air vehicle.

Flight Assistance
Being a pilot is not everyone’s piece of cake. If it were, the drop rates of Pilot Training in America wouldn’t be 50%. Add to that, the stringent rules laid by FAA for any pilot license and you have a major problem for companies that want to produce personal air vehicles. One way to avoid this is by making the vehicle fully computer controlled. Then the owner will have to put in the destination code or address in a GPS (or something similar) and the personal air vehicle will automatically fly to the destination. Apart from this, air control and airport help will also be required for the flying cars.

Because of all the requirements needed for it to work, a functional flying car might seem complicated and difficult, but it is certainly not impossible. For those who still think that flying cars are just a modern-day fad, here’s a thought: Horace Rackham (Henry Ford’s lawyer) was advised by the President of the Michigan Savings Bank that, “The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a novelty, a fad”, when he wanted to invest $5000 into the ‘automobile’ company in 1901. How the ‘fad’ earned more than 12 million dollars for Horace is history. The world, in all probability, will have flying cars in the air before the end of this decade.