Sunday, January 30, 2011

Tips to save your Laptop Battery Life Span

If you own a laptop you will appreciate the value of the battery even when you are very far from a power source. It will serve you better and longer if you operate and take good care of the battery as you maintain your self. Highlighted below are guidelines that will assist you in improving the battery performance as well as keep it for a long period of time.

1. Connect it to Power Source
This is a very simple thing to do, connect your laptop charger to the mains instead of running on battery if you are in a place where you have access to AC power. Running the system more on AC power will save the charging and the battery's life span.

2. Allow Free Flow of Air
If you don't want you battery to overwork you need to make sure that all the vents provided for cooling the laptop is not blocked in any way while the system is on. The reason is the cooling fan will be trying to cool the system down thereby will need more battery power.

3. Reduce the Processor(CPU)Speed
If your laptop is to work on battery for a long period of time, all you need to do is to reduce or minimize the CPU speed. To achieve this, you will see the battery icon on the right side of the task bar on the desktop. Right click on the icon and select power options.Then, checked balanced or power saver to keep the CPU at minimum speed.

4. Increase Your RAM
If the RAM of your laptop is low, the processor will also be forced to create a virtual memory on your hard drive. To access data from the Hard drive will also engulf more battery power. It good to note here that the system RAM is not only meant for speed of the CPU but it also relieves power consumption thereby reducing stress on battery power in remote places.

5. Reduce the Screen Brightness
The system hard drive and the LCD screen are the most power consuming peripherals on a laptop. It is advisable when you want to go away from the system to control the screen by reducing its brightness.This will go a long way to save the amount of power that will be wasted on the lighting a full brightening screen.

6. Switch Off all Unused Peripherals
Apart form the almighty hard drive that is always running their are other devices using power such as wireless modem (wifi)and blue-tooth to mention a few. Any time they are not in use do turn them off to save the battery power.

7.Adopt Hibernation Mode
If you are running or to run on battery power it is strongly recommended that you use hibernation mode.Don't mix standby mode with hibernation. If you put a system on standby it is still awake and running the battery power while hibernation will seize power consumption and will take you to the point you are when you put it on hibernation. Therefore, instead of put your laptop on standby try hibernate mode and you will be saving the life span of your battery.

8. Don't Plug External Devices
It is good for you not to plug any external devices such as USB devices; when you are not using them and you are running on battery. This is because they drain out charging from the battery.

9. Turn off Scheduled Tasks
If you are to run on battery endeavour to turn off all schedules that will run automatically such as anti-virus update or system checking for update online.

10. Close Unused applications
This tip is the most obvious of all. Check the task-bar for any running application and close all the unused ones as the more programs running the more work for the CPU and invariably running the battery power down. Try not to perform power intensive activities such as playing games or reading a CD-ROM while you are running the system on battery power.

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Thursday, January 6, 2011

The value of Experience in your Certification

If training is too costly or out of your reach, you can initially focus on relevant experience before investing in certification. A creative approach to work experience could provide you with options. Hands-on experience may help not just in terms of opportunity, but also in funding your learning and certification. An often overlooked avenue for work experience is volunteering. Volunteer opportunities are available with community organizations, religious organizations, non-profit organizations, local charities, environmental organizations, health bodies, schools, foundations, volunteer groups, and small businesses. In fact some organizations provide you with the opportunity to "volunteer for recommendation". What this entails is offering your services for a period of time in return for a recommendation from the organization. Note that volunteering or work experience isn’t about pay or meal ticket. It’s an opportunity to contribute and network with other people.

Networking is particularly important for experience and other career opportunities. As you grow in the field it is important that you network regularly with your peers and other people. Attend events of relevance to your career growth and keep on updating yourself.

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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Arithmetic Symmetry III

This the last in the series of my arithmetic manipulation of numbers. I wish you will try it out and see the beauty of playing with numbers.

1 x 1 = 1

11 x 11 = 121

111 x 111 = 12321

1111 x 1111 = 1234321

11111 x 11111 = 123454321

111111 x 111111 = 12345654321

1111111 x 1111111 = 1234567654321

11111111 x 11111111 = 123456787654321

111111111 x 111111111 = 12345678987654321

I hope I have really nourish you with series of information today.



Arithmetic Symmetry II

This is the second arithmetic symmetry that will equip your mind about how to manipulate numbers.

1 x 9 + 2 =11

12 x 9 + 3 =111

123 X 9 + 4 =1111

1234 x 9 + 5 =11111

12345 X 9 + 6 =111111

123456 x 9 + 7 =1111111

1234567 x 9 + 8 =11111111

12345678 x 9 + 9 =111111111

123456789 x 9 + 10=1111111111

Another nice number play.


Arithmetic Symmetry I

Check this arithmetic symmetry out you will appreciate the work of genius of our age hope you will like it. This is just for your information and necessary knowledge.

1 x 8 + 1 = 9

12 x 8 + 2 = 98

123 x 8 + 3 = 987

1234 x 8 + 4 = 9876

12345 x 8 + 5 = 98765

123456 x 8 + 6 = 987654

1234567 x 8 + 7 = 9876543

12345678 x 8 + 8 = 98765432

123456789 x 8 + 9 = 987654321


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Top IT Career Dos and Don'ts(4)

This is the concluding part of the Dos and Donts in IT career I have been discussing in other three posts, I know these Dos and Don'ts will help you a lot in your IT career.

Don't Feed on the Negative
As you build your IT Career, how will you deal with unfairness, condemnation, lack of appreciation, poor support or the absence of appropriate or timely reward? Wake up from the comfort zone siesta! Can you go the extra mile?

Opportunity isn't always attractive or obvious, but it's always knocking. For example, what would you do if the pay isn't attractive, but it's an opportunity to get your hands dirty in the your area of interest, say in the programming field?

A strong WHY will carry you through challenges. Believe in yourself, Have a high sense of self-worth. Don't get buried, but learn instead from experience and mistakes. "The man who does not make mistakes usually does not make anything." Focusing on fear and worry stops you from moving forward. Don't listen to dream-killers. Run with your can-do and can-bounce-back attitude.

Results may not be immediate so commitment and perseverance are critical. Believe in yourself and press on. Feed on positive and realistic expectations. According to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, "If you only knock long enough and loud enough at the gate, you are sure to wake up somebody".

Do something now
You've got the interest, so what're you waiting for? Are you waiting to be encouraged? Don't make that mistake. Waiting for ideal or perfect?. It's your life. It's your future. 1,000 excuses doesn't equal to an IT career. According to Alice Bloch, "We don't waste time, we only waste ourselves".

Empowerment, being creative, being positive and having a focus are all great. But unless you act, all you achieve is a big fat zero. Sitting in a farm all day doesn't make you a farmer. Do something now! If you don't shoot, you can't score! "The big shot is the small shot that doesn't stop shooting."

What are you doing? Don't wait until matters become critical or urgent. Being proactive is essential for career growth. No matter how big or small, start investing in your IT career today. You have what it takes to make a difference now!

The power to shape your career is in your hands! I wish you all the best in your IT Career
To read more about career development and encouragement, click here 


Top IT Career Dos and Don'ts(3)

The Dos and Don'ts of IT career continues and I decided to make it in bits because I dont want you to be bored with the details if is to be in one article. Take good time to study the tips and the sky will be your beginning.

Don't neglect Service and Contribution
Technology is about service and contribution. Invest not just for passing exams but to contribute and to be of benefit to others. Drop the "its-all-about-the-pay" mindset and recognize that your IT career isn't just about money or acquiring certificates. Growth comes by solving problems and creating opportunities. How is what you know and can do benefiting others? Value means others must benefit from you.

Money is not your mission. Money simply gives you options for achieving your purpose. Get rid of unrealistic expectations. IT creates wealth, but it isn't a get-rich-quick scheme. "We eat to live, We don't live to eat". Get deep and add value. Your value not just knowledge is your power.

Do grow your Network
To serve and contribute effectively in your IT career, build networks by cooperating and collaborating with others. What is your value if you can't learn from or work with other people? The value of networking can't be underestimated. How will you spread your message or understand the needs of others?

Don't burn bridges you may need tomorrow but instead plant the right seeds. Network - listen to, learn from and understand the local and global environment. Network with colleagues, family, friends, mentors, employers, employees, clients, etc.

To enhance networking, work on your non-technical and people skills (life skills) like communications, leadership, presentation, teamwork, etc. Effective development of these life skills helps you position and package yourself for opportunity and growth. You need to understand the motivations of other people to work, grow and network effectively with them.

Strong support networks recognize your value and allow you to listen better, sell your ideas, contribute, collaborate and create opportunity now and in future.

Don't joke with Professionalism.
Ethics is another issue that affects value. Can you trusted? We know you're an MCDBA, but is that database safe in your hands? Trust breeds opportunity. Are you considerate? Are you courageous? "Be a thermostat not a thermometer".

You are the Java expert; you have the Oracle solutions. Big deal! Are you a positive influence? Or are you the "Emperor that can do no wrong?" What message do you send out? In your actions, are you fair, honest, responsible, friendly, supportive, law-abiding, and tolerant? 

To link other dos and Dont's, check below:


Top IT Career Dos and Don'ts(2)

The second and third IT Dos and Don'ts as presented by me is Highlighted below, do take your time to not only read them but understand them for your career success.

Don't lose Focus
What is your WHY? Empowerment for what? Are you just following the crowd? Be wise. What is your passion? What do you value? Have a laser-like focus on WHY. "A dream without a plan is a nightmare".

Planning helps you with (WHY and HOW) focusing and organizing yourself. You know your stuff but are heading in the right direction? Where are you? What is your interest? What is your purpose? Where are you going? How will you get there? Understand the difference between the journey and the destination. How realistic are your expectations? Fulfillment is a function of expectations.

It is your duty to find your mission. As you invest in knowledge and skills, are you developing with purpose? In which area (s) do you want to make an impact? Get your priorities right. Focus on things that matter. Avoid distractions and let the main issue be the main issue.

Do develop your Creative skills

Focus on creativity and not consumption. Life, or opportunity, isn't usually a one-way street. Having the right skills and knowledge are great, but creativity needs more than just expertise. IT attracts everyone, but are they all making a difference? To stand out and stay ahead in IT, you need to go beneath the surface.
Observe your environment, seize the initiative and take bold steps. Learn to see beyond the obvious.

Get deep and drop the status quo approach. Creativity is not about the usual routine or copycat stuff. "Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail" - Ralph Waldo Emerson. What, where is the need? Think outside the box and see how your skills can provide an answer to the need.

Creativity also means being wise to opportunities available to you. Have an open mind. No two career strategies are the same. No straitjacket formula exists for career success. "Use open doors to unlock closed doors." For example, if the door to your career choice in database management appears closed, why not start by exploring open doors in technical support or networking. Such experience may eventually help you unlock doors to such career paths that may be otherwise inaccessible.

Keep a date with me on other Dos and Don'ts.


Top IT Career Dos and Don'ts (1)

What must I do to grow my career in Information Technology (IT)? Many are always asking questions on how to approach career development and prospects in the IT field? An IT career can be full of challenges and excitement.

But there is no magic key. It all depends on the effectiveness of your career growth methods. Quality of effort is often the difference between frustration and achievement.

Here are top "dos and don'ts" tips that should ensure your effort is high quality, while keeping you on the right track. Note that none of these guidelines can stand-alone. To make meaning they all play together.

Empower yourself
Empowerment is about using knowledge to make things happen - to create opportunity. Knowledge options include: training, certification, books, work experience and the Internet. What's your attitude towards learning? Is knowledge acquisition an investment or a cost to you?

Career opportunities exist in many fields including: technical support, programming, web development, database and networking.
Understand what empowerment means. It's about learning how to fish, instead of always depending on others. It's about resourcefulness -knowing how to dig deep and knowing where to look for answers.

Put in quality sweat - learn, practice, and invest in substance and not flashy gimmicks. Be strong in the fundamentals. The great IT pro isn't satisfied with just doing. Excel in what you do. Aim high. Measure yourself with high quality global standards. And keep on learning - Lifelong learning is critical. Anything else is dinosaur land. Strike the right balance between doing and the ability to keep on doing. You have to make that balance so you'll be sure to bring the best value to your career.

Check my subsequent post on this topic to keep you abreast of all other Dos and Don'ts for your career success.


Seven Step to Information Security Awareness

Are you maybe thinking about running a security awareness program but are not quite sure where to start? This article offers some pragmatic hints and tips on applying the seven key steps of a typical IT procurement process to the selection and launch of an awareness program, based on our experience of occasionally being the ‘driver’ of the process and often the ‘driven’.

1. Specify your requirements
The first step is to establish the need. Think carefully about what you are really trying to achieve through security awareness. Until your objectives are clear, you will have problems planning and organizing the awareness program, let alone evaluating and choosing the products and services you may need to deliver it.
Then ask yourself some rhetorical questions:

Do you have an information security awareness program already running, or is this an entirely new concept for the organization? If not information security, are there other awareness programs running that might act as role models?

Does/should the program involve awareness, training and education, or only one of these?
What topics does/should the program cover? Are other aspects of information security important to your organization? to mention a few.

2. Prepare your plan and evaluate your checklist
Awareness programs do not run themselves, especially as many organizations start from a fairly negative position. It will take concerted effort to overcome that inertia, get the organization up to speed on information security, and then keep it rolling. In other words, you need to develop a plan to establish the program and then manage it on an ongoing basis in order to deliver the projected benefits.

If you have a lot of ground to cover (e.g. “the whole of information security”!), one will recommend planning to cover it in discrete sections or chunks spread out over time, and wherever possible framing those chunks in terms that make sense to your target audience/s. Take, for example, the virus problem: anyone who uses an IT system should have a basic understanding of viruses. In explaining about viruses, you may want to mention issues such as configuration management, network/systems access and so on, but you need not go into depth on all of these at the same time. It’s perfectly acceptable to say “We will tell you more about this later” or even “Call the Help Desk or the Information Security Manager for more information”. That way you can maintain a focus on the key messages without overloading people.

An ideal way of crystallizing your thoughts from step 1 above, in parallel with developing your plan and addressing every part of your mind-map, is to prepare a product evaluation checklist containing:

Rows for each of the criteria that are important to you;
Columns for the criteria and their weightings (e.g. 3 = essential, 2 = important, 1 = nice-to-have), and then further columns for comments and scores against each of the products you are evaluating.

As you work through the checklist, you will in effect be defining and refining your requirements for the program, making it easier to develop the associated plan. That’s why we treat these two activities as one step.

3. Secure funding and management support
Getting your senior management on board with the whole idea of an awareness campaign is, I humbly suggest, by far the most important thing you can achieve in the next few months and will pay big dividends in the long run. How you actually achieve this is down to you.

Depending on the corporation, you may or may not need to make a strong financial case for the investment - some senior managers respond better to gut feel than raw numbers. Work with your CIO or IT Director, for sure, and ideally other influential managers who have an interest in seeing the awareness program succeed. You will often find friends in functions such as Internal Audit, Regulatory Compliance, Facilities, Legal, Risk Management, HR and Finance. Time spent privately and patiently explaining your plans to these key stakeholders will help (a) refine your plan; (b) identify any concerns; (c) deflect criticism and (d) line them up to support your program openly, especially during the early phases of the delivery. This is YOUR investment in the awareness program!

By the way, it’s often worthwhile getting explicit management support for information security during this process, meaning at least one quote from a senior manager which unequivocally mandates compliance. You may need to draft the actual statement for the CEO but her signature on the bottom will add weight to your awareness program way beyond its apparent value. Believe me, clout works!

During step 3, do not be afraid to continue refining your plan and requirements. All the time, you are thinking about it and learning about the possibilities. Don’t waste that brain energy!

4. Identify and shortlist possible solutions

Now you are in a good position to go looking for what you might need. Start by looking within your own organization for suitable resources, for example in your IT, HR, Internal/Corporate Communications and Training and Development functions. Take advice from colleagues running other internal awareness/training/educational programs (such as Health and Safety or IT training). Simply asking your colleagues for advice is worthwhile as it may help get their support for delivering the program later on, whereas not asking them may inadvertently set them against it.

Now go through your list of internal and external resources and home-in on those parts which you think may suit your needs. By all means discard the others but be careful - it is easy to overlook useful resources that are badly marketed, incompletely described or simply unknown (often because they are new). If you have the time and energy, it may be safer to shortlist most if not all potential suppliers at this stage and trim the list later. There is no harm in contacting companies for initial information at this stage but be wary of overt sales pitches: the next step works best if you approach it objectively on your terms, not theirs.

5. Evaluate potential solutions
For commercial offerings, this is the conventional tendering sub-process:

You prepare a formal Request For Proposals containing your requirements derived from your dreaming, planning and evaluation criteria (which you probably do not want to disclose to the bidders);

Your Procurement people should be falling over themselves to help you with the tendering process, especially if there are substantial sums of money involved. They will want to ensure that the process is fair, objective and entirely above-board. This is their profession: take their advice!

For in-house and free offerings, the shortlisting, evaluation and assessment process is similar. It is entirely possible that you may wish to take advantage of commercial and free awareness materials, for example, and combine them with internal resources. It’s your choice.

6. Select and procure chosen solutions

The end result of step 5 is usually but not always a single winning bidder. Sometimes you may have selected different bidders for separate parts of your requirement, sometimes you will have been unable to decide between a few bidders. Step 6 generally involves a bit of negotiation with the suppliers, perhaps some clarification of the price, the terms of the offer, and another hard look at what they offered. Finally you make the decision, prepare a Purchase Order and move on. This is known as doing the business.

Time for a brief comment from the other side of the fence: please try to make the time to contact each of the failed bidders to let them know why they were not selected, or at least invite them to ask for more information. Preparing a formal proposal involves an intensive effort on their part. If you feel certain aspects let them down, letting them know about it helps them do better next time, assuming they are open to criticism. [If they don’t even want to hear from you, you know you made the right decision!]

7. Implement and launch the awareness program

Let the fun commence! Whilst the previous 6 steps may seem like a rather bureaucratic and pointless diversion, you may well find the opposite in practice. Just as with a software development project, time spent deciding the requirements, designing the solution and testing the system pays off in the end with a smoother and more effective implementation.

You have a well-written plan, the management support and the necessary resources to deliver it. Now is the time to call on your internal colleagues and chosen suppliers to build and deliver the awareness program of your dreams.

In this article, I have given a flavor of what is normally involved in launching a structured security awareness program.

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