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There is very little emphasis these days on teaching programming, in spite of the fact that technology is becoming more and more a dominant aspect of our lives. Perhaps this is because many programmers are self-taught, used to working alone on projects, and therefore the assumption is that students will learn programming "as they go" or "on their own". This is unfortunate because I think that this aversion to traditional instruction and the preference for "self-taught" programmers leaves some people who want to learn in the dust.   I have lately become interested in rectifying this problem. A few of my clients have discussed the option of learning programming through tutoring sessions with me. I think that if I had been able to avail myself of such an option when I was first learning to program, I might have had a much easier time in learning how to properly use computers as the powerful tools that they are. I believe, however, that... read more

If you are working in a Microsoft environment, Excel or Word and on a laptop, you may have been frustrated having to select the Fn key together with the primary F1-F12 keys to run the desired command. While the fix is easy on a Mac, it is not so on a PC. Here are the instructions on how to do this on your PC (Windows 10) 1) In your Search Windows Box, type “UEFI”; this will bring a pop-up option “Change Advanced Startup Options”. 2) Select this option, in the next window select “Advanced Startup” and click on the button “Restart Now” (this will restart your computer) 3) Upon restart select “Advanced Options / UEFI Firmware settings” 4) Click on RESTART 5) Once the computer restarts, you will find a menu with several drop-down lists; a. select “POST behavior - Fn Lock Options”. 6) The default is Lock Mode Disabled / Standard. a. Select “Lock Mode Enable / Secondary” That’s it!! Confirm and Exit and your settings are... read more

Google Drive makes it easy for me to access my files no matter what device I am on – my home computer, work computer, iPad, smartphone, or a computer anywhere I visit. I keep my favorite recipes, photos, instructional guides, and a variety of professional and personal documents in the cloud where I can access them from any location with Internet connectivity.     In addition to enjoying the convenience of accessing my files from anywhere, I value the ability to easily share select files with others. Google Drive lets me decide whether I want to share a file with others by allowing them to simply view the file, or if I choose I may give specific people the ability to edit a file, so we can easily collaborate on a project or while making plans.     If you are not familiar with Google Drive I can get you very comfortable with the most useful features in just one tutoring session. Other Google apps that I love include Google Forms, for gathering information,... read more

Have you ever looked at online computer ads, or the shelf at the local Big-Box Retailer, and said "They Don't have exactly what I want/need!" - If this is the case, a Custom Built Computer may be the right solution to the problem.   The 1st step in a Custom Build is determining the exact client's needs. In my "Daily Driver", I knew I needed 4 Monitors in a 2x2 Configuration. This particular graphics setup is a fairly limiting criteria when it comes to buying a graphics card.    Instead, the less expensive option is the use 2x Graphics cards, with 2 outputs each. The prerequisite for this setup is a Motherboard with 2x PCI-E Slots.    This is just one example of why every custom build Must have an experienced advisor.    If you want the pride of building your own Computer, you can hire me for product selection on the front-end, usually about 1 hour with a shared Newegg.com or Amazon.com Wish List,... read more

IF I could go back in time and give my younger self some advice on how to be a better student, be more successful in school, life, etc, I would definitely tell myself that being involved in everything comes at a cost. It is better to find a few things that you like to do, do them well and often, than feeling stressed because there is so much on your plate at one time. Being a 'Jack of all Trades' it is natural for me to dip my toes in different waters- all at the same time, but that does not mean that I can give 100% to any of them at that time. While I was able to get good grades (A- average) while in school, I was impressed by how much better I did- and felt about my work- the few times that I scaled back on my activities. Another piece of advice that I wish that I could bestow upon my younger self would be to learn how to speak up in a group setting when someone is not fulfilling their part of an agreement. Now, this said, the best way to do this would be in a tactful manner-... read more

Greetings, scholars! One of my dad's favorite sayings is, "If something seems too good to be true, it probably is." The website Coursera is an example of why that saying needs the word "probably". The idea of taking real college courses from top-notch instructors at prestigious schools for free sounds impossible, yet students around the world are doing just that. When I first heard of Coursera, I was skeptical. To try it out, I enrolled in some basic undergraduate courses so that I could see how they stacked up against the classes I took at KU and Emporia State University. I am currently taking precalculus at UC Irvine, organic chemistry at Illinois, and calculus at The Ohio State University. All three classes are superlative. The video lectures give me new insights into familiar concepts, and the online quizzes motivate me to practice my skills and keep them sharp and up-to-date. Best of all, they haven't cost me a dime, and I can attend class from the... read more

A few keys to success in school (for people with or without A.D.D.): We need to concentrate on taking notes in classes, and possibly use a digital recorder to record some classes. (That makes a tremendous difference for many of my A.D.D. students, because they can "go back and listen" to things they missed when distractions occurred.) Examples of distractions include when other students are moving or making noises, worries or concerns**, being hungry, needing to go to the restroom, looking for a pen or pencil, or needing to sharpen a pencil, etc. There are many sources of distractions. Even **fear of failure** can be a distraction! What about memory problems? Actually all of us have trouble with remembering from time to time--it's part of being human, right? Heck, even computers have memory problems occasionally, so it seems that some degree of "forgetfulness" is basically a universal condition. Some good news for A.D.D. students: If we are able... read more

On June 2, 1989, my life changed forever. A brand new world was brought to my attention. I moved into the main land of the United States. I am Puerto Rican, meaning natural born American, but was raised on the island of Puerto Rico. Don't get me wrong, I have always been more fourtunate than most people with my condition. You see, I have a condition called Spina Bifida. I guess it would make more sense if I explain myself. Normally, during the first month of a pregnancy, the two sides of the spine (or backbone) join together to cover the spinal cord, spinal nerves and meninges (the tissues covering the spinal cord). Spina bifida refers to any birth defect involving incomplete closure of the spine. Myelomeningocele is the most common type of Spina Bifida. It is a neural tube defect in which the bones of the spine do not completely form, resulting in an incomplete spinal canal. This causes the spinal cord and meninges (the tissues covering the spinal cord) to stick out of the... read more

If you want to learn how to program but are getting overwhelmed by the number of options as well as the various wordings in programming language, there is a free program called StencylWorks (http://www.stencyl.com/) that simplifies the coding language by using blocks to visually show the coding instead of the standard typed languages. A friend of mine has really taken to StencylWorks and is working on a set of tutorials for it. She also offers free help for using StencylWorks through her livestream. If you want to learn how to program, this is a great place to start. You can branch off from Stencyl into Actionscript 3 (the current major programming language for flash) and from there can tackle the basics in most languages.

Every week a colleague and I teach very basic computer skills at a local community center in Harrisburg, PA.   I am astounded as to the amount of computer illiteracy there is in Central PA.  It is almost 2015 and by now, computers have become more affordable and accessible.  The one thing that they have not become is easy to use.  Tables and smart devices have rattled things up when the first usable table entered the market in 2010.  This was the first generation iPad.   In almost 5 years, that influence has continued in the desktop and laptop markets.  People who purchase a smart phone, are forced to use it, or at least, shown to use it by family/friends/grandchildren.  This is a good thing.  All of us can be tutors, passing on knowledge.   That is my goal here at WyzAnt as well as whenever I speak/teach.  I remind people to know things/tasks so well that you can teach others.  This is how people are... read more

Everybody in this country should learn how to program a computer...   ...because it teaches you how to think.   -Steve Jobs     Knowing how to program is an incredibly important skill that is becoming more and more valuable as technology is becoming extremely important in our everyday lives.   And even if you don't plan to be a tech-savvy computer geek who is shaping the future, programming can still greatly help you reach your goals.   I have met many mathematicians, biologists, chemists, statisticians, and accountants who used their programming knowledge to make programs that help them reach their goals.   Many scientists who conduct research program their own applications that help them conduct research or properly store/interpret data.   I have met accountants who used programming to make Excel application tools and other database tools.   If for no other reason, one... read more

Can you believe 2014 is already 1/4 over? Wow! Besides freezing and shoveling snow, what  have you done so far this year?   It's never too late to learn! Maybe you always wanted to blog but didn't know how ...Or buy a new computer with your tax refund ...Or finally conquer your fear of public speaking   I CAN HELP!   I have expertise in all of these areas and would be happy to help you! Make 2014 YOUR Year! Here's to 8 more months of SUCCESS!

For someone who is new to the subject of Home Automation, the hardest choice they have to make is choosing the right controller.  There are several controllers on the market, and new ones are coming out every day. Some popular ones are: MiCasaVerde - Vera 3 and VeraLite – http://www.micasaverde.com Homeseer - http://www.homeseer.com/ Both of these systems use the Z-Wave protocol in a wireless mesh network to communicate and control devices in your home. There are other systems out there based on the older X10 or the newer Insteon, but they either use the power lines in your home to communicate, or a hybrid of power line and radio signals to communicate. X10 – www.x10.com Insteon – www.smarthome.com No matter which system you use, each will have its own inherent strengths and weaknesses.  I recommend that you read up on each of the protocols, and decide for yourself which one you are willing to use.  I personally use a Vera 3 to... read more

NEED-TO-KNOW Know How To Add an Email Signature in Microsoft Outlook   Once you’re in MS Outlook: 1. Click on the “File” menu in your top task menu. 2. Click on “Options”. 3. In the dialog box, click on “Mail”. 4. Find and open “Signatures” on the right side of the page. 5. Create your signature by choosing “New” and type a name for it in the text field. * Now you’ll create the signature you want displayed at the bottom of your emails. You can personalize fonts, insert images and provide hyperlinks (company logos, website URLs, etc.)   Items You May Want to Consider Including: - Name - Job Title, Department - Office Phone, Fax Number - Company Name, Location - Logo or Website Link for the Company   Once you've finished & saved your signature, you can select which emails you'd like it to be automatically added to. It can be set to populate on every email sent from your Outlook account or you... read more

Most online classes require a minimum of one proctored examination. With the increased risk of academic dishonesty, some instructors and professors require multiple proctored exams. I recently completed a 100% online Introduction to Oceanography course. The professor (of Florida Institute of Technology and BCC) required three proctored exams for the course. These tests included two mid-terms and one final exam, all three requiring an essay worth 30-50% of the exam. Unknown topics always cause anxiety, especially when it is a timed, closed book, no notes--proctored online exam. As I took my final exam yesterday, I was confident until I looked at the list of essay topics I had the opportunity to choose from. Out of the five, one topic seemed to be most familiar to me--Hydrothermal Vent Communities. I was grateful that I might know enough to actually write a complete essay on the topic. I was sure I would not do well enough with any of the other four topics to have passed this exam (essay... read more

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