July 27, 2012

Picking a New Power Supply

ATX computer power supply with connectors for ...
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If you are building your own computer or simply trying to update the capabilities of your current rig, one of the considerations that you may choose to make is installing a newer, better power supply. If you are thinking about adding a new power supply to your current computer, then there are specific considerations that you are going to want to make. Consider that your future hardware upgrade plans are going to play a vital role in determining which power supply unit to buy. Your budget, your power requirements, your connectors, your current hardware and the cables that you currently have are all also going to play a role in making this decision.

What are your future needs or plans for hardware upgrades? If you plan on adding additional hardware to your computer setup in the future, then you are going to want to keep this in mind when choosing your current power supply. What kind of connectors and power requirements does your current hardware require? This will help you determine what type of power supply is going to meet your needs in the most effective manner right now, but you should also be forward-thinking when choosing an appropriate power supply.

What is your budget? Your budget is going to play a truly important role in determining which power supply you purchase. Your computer needs are definitely important, but your budget literally determines how much of a power supply that you can reasonably afford, and as such, you should keep your budget in mind from beginning to end during this process.

How long of cables do you need? This may depend on your cable routing plans or the size of your case. Airflow is important so excess cable isn’t helpful and if it is in the budget a modular power supply might be helpful.

Computer Hardware Going Green

Illustration showing the interior of a cathode...
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Many companies and businesses today, both large and small, are looking closely at the green movement and seeing how their practices can adapt. It has long been recognized that ways of conducting business have a significant impact on our environment. Getting a firm’s computer hardware in line with this idea is definitely an idea whose time has come.

There are many businesses, and households as well, that have older model cathode ray tube monitors sitting in a corner collecting dust. Along with an older computer, or two, it marks an earlier time of blazing hardware technology. Even if that time was possibly less than two years ago. While many may believe a recycling process that strips the old model down to its essential and expensive core metals is a viable alternative for these models, there is a greener way. Donating the old models to a company that swaps out non-working parts for working parts in other compatible models eventually creates a working computer that may be sold quite inexpensively or given to a charity in need of entering the computer age.

Reusing the hardware and peripherals is a much greener use for them and the environment than recycling them. And considering the amount of raw resources and energy required to assemble all the individual elements and construct the computer, it makes greener sense to use each computer as completely and fully as it possibly can be. Not only will the earth be grateful for your greener attitudes, but it makes sound business sense as well.

For example, we are all paying for the power which drives our computers and peripherals. And while it may not be practical to power down a firm’s mainframes, simply turning off power to desktops, laptops, printers and all other peripherals, instead of leaving them powered up and in standby mode, is a simple task that not only will save money, but require less energy as well. See, going green can be a win-win all around.

Keeping Up with Technology News

NBC News Washington
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Technology seems to change from day-to-day, so much so that you can feel as though it’s very hard to keep up with what is going on. There are ways you can accomplish this, however, without having to devote a huge amount of time to it. The first step is to find a technology news source that provides accurate information. Even the most current news is going to be no good if it isn’t right. So make sure your technology news source does its homework.

The second step is to realize that you really don’t need to check your technology news source every day. Once or twice a week should be enough, unless you hear about something (from a reliable source, of course) that appears as though it is going to be happening very quickly, and the information applies to you or your business. Then you might want to make more frequent checks. Again, make sure all the information you’re reviewing is accurate.

The third step is deciding whether or not any new technology is really going to make that much of a difference. For example, if the latest technology news involves new “apps” becoming available for cell phones, you want to make sure that it’s one that you and your employees actually need. If you participate in affiliate programs, and a new “app” provides faster access to information on the top affiliate programs, then you definitely want that.

You know what needs you and your company have, and by keeping up with technology news, you probably know ahead of time whether or not the latest happenings are going to have an immediate effect on you, or if you can wait a while before taking advantage of the latest things. When you have chosen a good source, you will have the information you need to make informed decisions.

Computer Hardware and Space Debris

Diagram: Orbit lifetimes for debris released i...
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If you have ever looked up at the night sky and marveled at all you saw and wondered what else might be up there, you definitely had company. But probably not for the same reasons. There are technicians looking up at the sky and wondering about all the junk and debris that is flying around out there and just how any individual item may interfere with an intended launch of a rocket.

Due to the amazing advances in computers and computer hardware, massive supercomputers aren’t needed for this particular job any more. Private companies are able to take on the complex job of computing and tracking the orbital trajectories of debris in space. Due to the cost, time and labor-intensive nature of such tracking, often such computing was reserved for manned space flights. However with more powerful computers, advanced software and more detailed information available to a company, trajectories can now be mapped for most launches, not only of manned spacecraft but for satellites as well.

Space junk presents very real hazards to spacecraft. Lives could well be at risk as well as billions of dollars worth of equipment and scientific experiments. The need to know that a rocket is picking a safe course through an ever-increasing field of debris is more important than ever to the success of its mission.

The hardware required for doing such specific computing has indeed become smaller, cheaper and more powerful. Technicians state it is no longer a requirement to employ a one thousand core computer to accomplish this work. It can be successfully achieved with a ten core machine.

These technological improvements allow the work to be done cheaper, faster and in significantly more detail. In earlier times, such a detailed orbital plotting would have taken at least thirty days to finish. Today, this detailed work can be done in three days.

Advances in computer hardware are making the skies safer in more ways than one.

Computer Hardware and Airport Security Scans

Transportation Security Administration officer...
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Technology and advances in computers and computer hardware make life better and safer for us on a daily basis. Except when it doesn’t. While that may sound contradictory it is currently a dilemma being faced by both airplane passengers and Transportation Security Administration officials.

The need for screening and security for airline passengers today is undeniable. As those who seek to circumvent security for nefarious reasons find newer and alternative ways to achieve their goals, security must be ever more vigilant, creative and tightened in its determination to thwart them.

It is this search for and utilization of newer methods of security that sometimes run up against or possibly step over the line at intruding into a citizen’s personal liberties. A problem has developed over just this situation regarding full-body screening of passengers at U.S. airports. The screeners can show hidden weapons, explosives and contraband on an individual. However the screening process is so sensitive that it shows more than that. The images reveal the body of the individual being screened.

The Electronic Privacy Information Center, a privacy advocacy group, filed a law suit against the U.S. government to stop the screenings. Supporters of the group felt that the screeners would use the process salaciously or for ridicule.

However a solution to this problem may have been found. With new software, now a screener will see an avatar of a generic human being. It has been reported the look of this new image will be a regular guy wearing a baseball cap. However any hidden weapons or other items will still be visible to the screeners.

While full-body scanning remains voluntary, it is estimated that 98% of individuals select the full-body scan over alternate methods of screening. At present the TSA screeners for the full body scans are located in a separate closed room. Having an avatar image would not require this nod to further privacy.

Using Computers for Your Business Means Getting Good E-Mail Hosting

When you decide to run a business, one of the things you’ll most likely need and want to consider is what kind of computer to get. Depending on the business you’re running, the computer might be a central part of your life or it might only be used for a few little tasks. What you need it for will affect what kind of computer you buy, how much you spend on it, and what specific hardware and software you need. You also have to consider whether you want to have an Internet presence for your company.

If you decide to have a Website for your business, or if your company is operated solely online, you’ll have several issues to deal with. You’ll need to consider Website hosting, e-mail hosting, whether you want to try cloud computing, and other factors. There are so many different considerations for a person who’s starting a business and needs a computer for it. Don’t go it alone. There are knowledgeable people out there who will be happy to help you get what you need. Just ask them the questions you have and keep asking computer gurus until you get the answers you’re looking for.

By doing that, you’ll be able to move ahead with your business more quickly and you might even save some money. Some Internet businesses hardly spend anything on the business’ Web site and other hosting plans because they use providers that don’t cost much. Keep in mind, though, that you get what you pay for. If you aren’t sure of the quality of a particular company that you’re thinking of working with, it might be better to choose a different one that you feel better about. You can find some great deals for your business, but don’t automatically choose the least-expensive option.

Where to Get the Best Broadband Deals

In order to get good deals on broadband, you need to know where to look. Because there are so many options, it can seem overwhelming at times. The good news is that you don’t have to sort through every one of the choices. You can narrow them down pretty easily and only choose from the most logical options for you and your needs. In deciding which of the many broadband deals are best for you, think about what matters. How much of a factor is cost? What about speed? Is reliability a serious issue for you?

When you address these kinds of questions, you can easily eliminate the places that don’t offer what you need. Maybe some of them are just too expensive to fit into your budget. Others might have a low price, but they don’t give you the speed you’re looking for. If you have a home-based business and you need your broadband to be very reliable, be sure to check into that before choosing a particular company. Once you really take the time to determine what you need and which companies offer it, you’ll be more likely to narrow down your choice and get a great deal on your broadband service.

Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions or try to get discounts. If one company offers a lower price, take that information to another company and ask if they can beat it. A small price war for your business could have you paying a lot less for a lot faster and better service. It’s certainly worth a try. Even if it doesn’t work, you’ll get a good idea of how interested each company is in helping you and treating you with respect. Cost and speed matter, but so does customer service – don’t forget to check into that when you’re making your choice.