Archive for March, 2009

Effective use of Technology in Education

There are 3 main ways in which technology can be used in education.  One of them is horrible.  One of them is neutral.  One of them is great.  One of them is used extensively.  One of them is increasingly being used.  One of them is not being used enough.  One of them is technology being used to demonstrate an idea.  One of them is using technology as a replacement for pen and paper.  One of them is using technology to create.

Continue reading ‘Effective use of Technology in Education’

Lecture 4, the Web – HTML

This is the first of 3 lectures looking at the Web and how it fits into our world.   We are starting off by looking at HTML as it is an important technology to understand and be familiar with for an IT professional. It is increasingly being used everywhere.  The ability to write,  manipulate and understand html and it’s philosophy is greatly beneficial.

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Lecture 3, Operating Systems – Process Management

In our previous lecture we looked at how information is stored in a computer system.  This week we are going to finish off our look at operating systems by investigating how information is managed when it is being processed.  This is an area of much interest at the moment as we move into an environment where multiple cores and multiple CPU’s are increasingly common.  This is introducing a whole range of new problems and complexities that we haven’t fully solved yet.  The next few years are going to produce some very exciting new developments.

Continue reading ‘Lecture 3, Operating Systems – Process Management’

Your Workflow is Art

Everyone is unique in the way they go about achieving things.  Everything you do is unique and special in it’s own way.  This can be in a little way,  or this can be in a big way.  It all depends on what you are doing and how much you want to take control of what it is that you are doing.  However you approach it,  the workflow you end up with is art. Continue reading ‘Your Workflow is Art’

Experience is Everything, Forget Features

When looking at technology it’s very easy to get caught up in the features that are on offer.  We should however be considering another aspect of the piece of technology which is the experience.  Instead of asking the questions”

“What features has it got?”

“What can it do?”

We should be asking the questions: Continue reading ‘Experience is Everything, Forget Features’

Lecture2, Operating Systems – the File System

In our first lecture we looked at the user interface.  We looked at how users go about entering data into,  and retrieving data from a computer system.  This data has to be stored somewhere,  however,  so in this lecture we followed on to look at how file systems work.  While an end user doesn’t usually need to concern themselves with the particulars of the file system their computer is using,  an IT professional should. An understanding of how filesystems work can be important to developing software that works efficiently,  it can also help sometimes in terms of troubleshooting.  Even if you don’t use it for any of these,  having a good understanding is still beneficial from a mindset point of view. Continue reading ‘Lecture2, Operating Systems – the File System’

Lecture 1, Operating Systems – User Interfaces

In our first lecture we started off by looking at user interfaces.  This is a nice place to start as it is the first and main part of a computer users experience. It is also one that users tend to put remarkable little thought into in general.  It is a part that ICT professionals should be very familiar with if they are going to successfully help people to get the most out of their technology. Continue reading ‘Lecture 1, Operating Systems – User Interfaces’

My experiences as an academic

I’ve recently created a category for Uni.  Here I intend to put thoughts regarding some of the material we are teaching in the subjects I have at UTS.  Like any other subject we have a limited amount of time in which to teach,  yet a whole wealth of material that we could cover.  Often times we miss out on being able to cover some really interesting and thought provoking topics.  So I thought I would discuss some of them here.

If you are a student in one of my subjects I hope reading these will give you interesting perspectives.  If you are a past student of the subjects then  I hope you find these illuminating.  If you are just a passer by then I encourage you still to read them as they don’t directly refer to any of our subject material so you should still find them interesting.  I also encourage you to post any comments you have,  collaboration makes the world a better place. Continue reading ‘My experiences as an academic’

The Dock Vs the Start Menu

There are a lot of articles comparing the OSX Dock to the Windows Taskbar.  A better comparison I think would be to compare the Dock to the Start Menu, whose job it more accurately performs.  A lot of this depends however on how you manage your desktop overall.  Taking this into account this will be a comparison of not only these two tools but the workflows that each encourages. Continue reading ‘The Dock Vs the Start Menu’

Refine or rebuild

You have a problem and it needs solving.  You have a current solution but it isn’t quite there.  You think that to refine the existing solution isn’t going to cut it.  A more elegant solution could be found by cutting your losses and starting over,  to rebuild from scratch.  Your boss however doesn’t want to do that as it will cost too much and potentially take a lot longer.  Let’s look at this from both sides of the argument. Continue reading ‘Refine or rebuild’