The Ships of Space

One of the things that I love to think about is technology advanced space ships. When I do end up thinking about this I like to think about how they are built. What they would do. How the would be used and, where they would go. Whenever I get lost in my thoughts, I can see my inside one of these spacecraft exploring the universe as if i’m riding my bike around the neighborhood.

Whenever I picture one of these magnificent boats of space being made I think of the final scene from Star Trek “Beyond” when the U.S.S. Enterprise is being rebuilt. I would picture some sort of advance engine type firing up and preparing to warp with a low humming sound and the humming gets louder until they fire and the ship begins to move at immense speed to some far away solar system, even a galaxy where mankind has never seen before. Speaking of exploration, I imagine ships all over the universe thriving at the fact that there could be a new home (not saying earth isn’t good for humanity) and searching for minerals and more elements on the periodic table trying to advance our technology even more. Wouldn’t you want to see the vastness us outer space without full astronaut training?

~Kyle

How Easy Is It To Steal Your Fingerprints?

Let’s admit it, we’ve all taken pictures while making a peace sign or a thumbs up and sent it to a friend or decided to post it on Instagram, harmless, right? Well, you may have given all of your followers or your friend the password to your device without even knowing! Now many of our devices allow you to use your fingerprint as a way to unlock your phone, but your camera could allow others access your devices. Pictures taken from smartphones are so detailed that they can pick up your fingerprints! Although you may think that they can only notice the fingerprints when you take a selfie, you may want to think again. Your fingerprints can be retrieved from pictures that have been taken up to ten feet away.  

Image result for girl taking selfie

If you think that none of your followers could have the technology to steal your fingerprints, you may be frightened to hear it’s easier than you would think, I know I was. Professor Isao Echizen from Japan’s National Institute of Informatics explains that, “your fingerprint data can be recreated if fingerprints are in focus with strong lighting,”. By compiling photos, or even just using one, thieves can recreate your fingerprints and hack into your devices, all they need is good lighting and a focus on your fingers. However, for me, the scariest part of stealing your fingerprints is that they, unlike passwords cannot be changed, we’re stuck with them forever! The thought that a harmless picture could give someone the password to all of my devices, forever, makes me think twice every time I go to make a peace sign or thumbs up in a picture. However, I think I’m just not going to do a peace sign or thumbs up in any picture I take, it’s not worth the risk. And just think about how easy it’ll be to steal your fingerprints in the future!

~Isabella

How Technology Has Taken Over

Imagine there was a giant power outage and you could not use any technology until it was fixed, could you get through your daily lives. When thinking about a person’s dependency on technology someone can take one of two sides. Either they think people are too dependent on technology, or people are not dependent on technology. New technology is getting created every year, like phones and computers. This new technology’s goal is to be better than the last. Every time this new and improved technology come out, it can increases one dependency on technology. Technology is a great tool that helps people in their everyday lives, but the question is do people overuse it.

I personally think we are too dependent on technology. I’m not saying that everyone needs to stop using technology. One thing that has that has changed with technology is communication. This is a big area that I think has changed because of texting. Texting is an easy way to tell someone something, but how much texting is too much. That is a standard that should be set. A person’s dependency on technology, more specifically texting could make people less social. Since people have been texting and not really communicating face to face as much anymore, it could cause them to forget how to communicate with people. Communication is a really important thing in life whether it is for a job interview or a school presentation. I think this is a skill more people need. Communication is an important aspect of life that can’t be taken over by technology.

~Jimmy

The Benefits of Better Software

Camera and film making techniques are becoming a huge part of the modern classroom. For certain projects, students have to film different scenes, or interviews. There are a lot of scenarios  that involve using a camera, or a certain computer program.  But do students really know how to use a camera to film something that crosses the line from mediocre to professional, or edit something into a quality piece of media? For the past decade, film and video arts have been gaining popularity in schools and colleges around the world. For example, in many middle schools and high schools there are annual news reports of the weeks events. The segment is filmed, and often edited by students. The work that goes into this can sometimes be complicated for newcomers, so how exactly do they manage this? Well the answer is simple: learning. The students creating these short films have learned how to properly use a camera, alongside a computer program, allowing them to create well made, fun to watch videos to show to classmates and teachers.

But although there is often a class that teaches this skill, it is not often well communicated, or sometimes not taught entirely correctly. A common mistake when schools teach kids how to make a film is the software that is used. Many times, free software like Windows Movie Maker, or WeVideo is used, which does not very well implicate the techniques of working with a camera and software. Programs like Sony Vegas, or Final Cut are much better for teaching students, and offer many more learning opportunities. The reason this has such a massive impact on students future, is that many careers include this kind of work. Some of these careers include business, medical sciences, accounting, and many more. If students are educated on how to make professional videos with certain programs as early as high school, then they will have a big advantage later on in life.

    So as you can see, all sorts of camerawork and filming are essential parts of students futures, especially in certain fields. There are many ways that knowing how to properly use computer software and cameras can improve the way you understand other computer-related issues, and solve problems that pertain to your specific career. This is why I think that students should be taught to use cameras properly, and edit videos with ease.

~Dan

 

Don’t Buy A New Computer If Yours Is Running Slow, There’s A Solution That Will Take Just A Few Minutes

turbo app

Studies revealed that PC manufacturing companies are building their computers so they are not made to last a long time. The reason they do this is so you have to spend hundreds of dollars on a new PC every few years so the companies make more money. To try to stop this problem an elite team of Microsoft gold developers have created a new piece of software called TurboYourPC. What it does is scan your PC for unnecessary files that cause your PC to slow down, and fixes them instantly. Basically anyone can use it and it just takes about 5 minutes to work. One thing is you will have to do this about once a month, but it just takes 5 minutes.

Personally I think this is great. No longer will we have to keep spending hundreds on new PCs, just download and use the TurboYourPC software. One downside is that it may not work on all devices, but if you have a desktop at your house, it will probably work with it, and help it run faster and longer. My family has had a few computers that have stopped working after a few years. I’m sure if had used this, they would have lasted longer. So I think this is worth a try if you have a slow PC.

~Dan

Humans on Mars?

Putting the first man on the moon was one thing, but putting humans on Mars is the next step and is proving to be a lot more difficult. Although we have had robotic exploration of Mars for over 40 years and had the first rover land on Mars in 1997, we still aren’t close to prepared to send humans to Mars. Human exploration of Mars begins with the low-Earth orbit around the International Space Station to test communication devices needed for deep space exploration and how to protect astronaut’s health in deep space. NASA’s next step which is stated on their website is to send robots to redirect an asteroid to orbit around the moon to explore it in the 2020’s. However, NASA isn’t expected to send people to Mars until at least 2027 which has come with some controversy.

Many people think that the mission should be given more time to avoid possible errors and safety hazards. Although despite controversy there have surprisingly been over 200,000 men and women to sign up around the world. Keep in mind that this is also only a one way ticket because when you sign up to go to Mars there is no coming back. This number has to obviously narrowed down to a select few to actually go to Mars and so there is a training and then selection of who gets to go. During this selection one of the finalists in the Mars One program accused the officials in saying that their process of choosing is flawed because the top candidates helped finance the program. What do you think about this mission, would you ever go to Mars? I would definitely not but obviously there are people here on Earth that are completely comfortable with living on Mars for the rest of their lives.

~Tyler

The Dangers of Drones

A drone is an unmanned aircraft that can be controlled remotely or can fly automatically through software embedded into the system. Amazon has recently been using Amazon Air, a form of delivery using drones. The CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos announced a few years ago that he wanted to use drones for fast deliveries. They also are used for military purposes when a situation is too dangerous for human flown aircraft  to enter. But, there has been some controversy over the potential safety hazards that come with them.

Drones can be very useful but really dangerous when they fly too low in the sky and come close to pedestrians. They also are known for interfering with aircrafts and causing pilots to worry. Since many of them are preprogrammed, they don’t change course when they need too. I feel that drones really are unsafe because when say an Amazon package is delivering to your house, it could hit a mailbox, house, or even a child. These drones are like flying robots and people want to allow them to just fly around in the air uncontrolled. That’s crazy! There are also no licenses yet for people who want to individually fly them and illegal drones are being flown all around the country.  Do you think drones should turn into the next delivery service?

~Molly

Social Media: A Shooting Range of Opinions

Social Media provides everyday people with the power to share their thoughts and doings. Twitter, Facebook, tumblr, Instagram, and Snapchat all bear the stories of others, and it is these apps that make it easier than ever to create your story. Now, with the use of social media, information can travel from a small town to the other side of the world in a matter of minutes. However, false, or even private information can now surf the web at unimaginable speeds. Even though there are many good things about social media, like how it actually improves relationships, it can still easily be used for less kindly things.

Many social media apps provide users with usernames. These usernames (as well as avatars, profile pictures, and bios) can change a person’s behavior online, often giving them a false sense of security behind a screen name. This is part of the Proteus Effect. Of course it’s easier and often more acceptable to speak your mind online than it is in real life, yet this opens the door for someone to be personally targeted online. This is especially seen on Twitter where tweets are directed at others, without any name attached.

 

So, aiming a tweet at someone else brings up the question, can a targeted tweet be justified? To clarify, a targeted tweet isn’t the same thing as bullying, it is only to suggest something, instead of an outright attack. After all it is just speaking your mind, sharing your ideas, exactly what social media is used for. Most targeted tweets aren’t aggressive, and are usually very implicit and cryptic. Although they are left without context, leaving them to be open to interpretation. Frequently, these aimed responses are what everyone else is thinking, but afraid to say. Personally, I enjoy finding these kinds of tweets because it shows that kids are still willing to voice their true opinions, even if it isn’t the popular view. Today, everything has become so politically correct, it can be crude to flat out say what you think, so I believe in the importance in not being afraid to get your stance out there. That’s not to say just be rude about everything, but if you have an opinion about something you shouldn’t be afraid to support and fight for your side. While, in the end, you still are going to have to be careful about what you say. Just remember, you have to say what you mean and mean what you say.

~Tyler

 

CDs: The Disc is Disappearing, but the Music Isn’t

Let me ask you a question: Do you know what a Walkman is? How about a typewriter? Telegraph? I’m guessing a a good amount of you said no to at least one of these things. Now this is simply because that piece of technology is really, really old. So old to the point where our generation doesn’t even know it existed.


However this is also happening to a piece of technology that pretty much all of us have known our entire lives: the CD. Pretty soon it will disappear. Gone. Poof. Donezo. The CD has now become almost completely obsolete! Very few people still buy them compared to how many people bought when they were in their prime, because everyone just downloads all of their music now. Eventually we’ll be saying the classic “Back in my day” story about how we used to have to put a CD in a CD player to listen to music.

Now obviously this isn’t entirely a bad thing. I personally think it’s great. We’re trading away CDs for downloadable music, the latter of which is easier to get, takes up much less space, and in some cases is much less expensive. The only thing we have to worry about is remembering to charge our phones or Ipods or whatever, and not dropping them or getting them wet. Although those last two things could also be said for CDs. You may ask yourself, “Are we going to miss out on better quality music if the CD goes away?” The answer is no. CDs aren’t even that high quality. One of the reasons that the record is making a small comeback is because it has very high quality sound. This is not at all the case for the CD.The reasons that they were popular were because they were the smallest way to listen to music, and they were cheap to buy and make. Downloads have greatly surpassed them. Will we be seeing a comeback? Probably not. You don’t see the telegraph or the typewriter making a comeback do you? Those would only be kept as antiques. The same won’t be said for CDs though, because they are so cheap. People will just end up throwing them in the garbage.


I really don’t even see any point in even buying CDs anymore. There is literally no reason to have one. Pretty much everyone I know listens to music on their phone or Ipod, and frankly that’s a much better option. Sure their are still people that buy CDs, but they’ll all eventually have to make the switch to downloads.

~Ethan

PC vs. Mac

 

Microsoft and Apple are two rivalling companies. This is especially visible through their computers. I believe that PC’s triumph over Macs in every way. Here are the reasons why.

We all know that windows has way more models than mac. Tons of manufacturers such as Asus, Dell, and Hewlett Packard (HP) make computers with Windows OS. If you buy a windows, you are never limited to what company or model you can get.

The cheapest Macbook is $1,100, a better PC can be half the price or less. Even for nearly the same price as a macbook pro, you could buy a lighter Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook with double the memory, a better graphics card, and a better hard drive.

If you use a mac, then you already know that everything has a second download. Sometimes, the software you wish to download doesn’t even work on Mac OSX. Most programs release on windows first, if they even make it to mac. Some easy to use free programs only available on windows are paint.net, and notepad++.

It’s just a basic fact that mac lacks when it comes to gaming. Sure, programs such as steam can be downloaded for mac, but only a small selection of games are available for download. with a Windows computer, there are no limits to what you can play.

After seeing my perspective, I hope you reconsider your choice next time you decide to buy a new computer.

~Jason