Learn Elements 12 And More

I have been putting in many hours working on my new training site that I have been telling everyone about JTC LEARNING. I built this site to enable me to setup easy to follow courses on topics such as Photography, Computers and Podcasting.

If you tried to signup in the past and were having trouble it was because of the way the site was processing orders. For some reason it was not processing them at all.

GOOD NEWS! The site JTC LEARNING is now running and processing your orders.

You can now signup for learning Photoshop Elements 12 from importing your pictures into the organizer to working with the editor. I am still adding more video content to this course but you can jump in now and follow along as we build.

Because you are a friend and registered for these daily emails I am offering you a $5.00 discount off the purchase price if you act now. Please use the coupon code jtc5. Before you check out you will see where it asks for this code.

Please visit JTCLEARNING.COM and click on the Courses link at the top of the page. Then select Photography, simply select Photoshop Elements 12 and begin your signup and check out to begin learning how to photo edit using this great tool!

JTC Learning

Point and Shoot Dead?

The point and shoot camera that many people carried and that many women had in their purse are becoming a technology of the past. I really liked the pocket compact cameras. They always took great pictures and you always seemed to have one. I use to keep mine in the glove box of the car.

But today it seems all of us have smart phones with great little cameras built right into them. Now we all have a camera in our pocket. Why worry about batteries or where that little pocket camera is located?

What’s nice about using a smart phone as your camera is you can set the phone to upload your pictures as soon as you snap them. When you used a point and shoot camera you had to transfer them to your computer and then upload them to the Internet.

At the end of the day I always teach that the best camera you can have is the one you have with you. But on the other hand there are times that I am driving that I wished I would have my DSLR camera in the car with me.

Point Shoot

 

What is a Podcast?

A Podcast is an online radio show. Most podcasts that you will find online are FREE. Podcasts are created and produced by people just like you. Someone sitting in front of a computer with an idea. We connect a microphone to the computer and use a free software program to record our thoughts and we begin recording.

Podcasts are the thoughts of someone with something to share. Most of the time it is some form of learning. If I have an expertise and want to share what I know with the world. I can create a podcast and share my thoughts. Sometimes people create podcasts about TV shows and share their thoughts with the world.

I have always enjoyed podcasts because I can pull them onto my smart phone and play them in the car as I travel to and from work. You can put in some ear buds and listen as you are working out or taking a afternoon walk.

So how do you find a podcast to listen to? The best way is to use ITunes. Open it and click on the Store button. Then click on Podcasts. You can then search for just about anything you can think of.

I produce 3 podcasts each week. I hope you can tune into the shows. Also please subscribe. Also I have just created a new You Tube channel for my newest show. The Tech Podcast. Please subscribe to my new You Tube channel at: http://www.youtube.com/thetechpodcastshow.

Also please visit my podcast sites.

The Tech Podcast

The Photography Guy

Tips From The Server Room

Podcasts

 

Windows XP RIP

It is official Windows XP has now passed away after many years of service. Born on August 24, 2001 and now dead on April 8, 2014 at the age of 13 years! In the technology world this is a very long life.

What does this mean for you? If you are reading this and using Windows XP and have your computer connected to the Internet, “RUN”. No wait I am kidding. Well kind of anyway. The truth is you have to be more careful then ever when browsing the Internet. This is because Windows XP will become a hackers paradise. This is because there will be new holes on the operating system that will no longer be patched. Once these are put out on the Internet everyone will be using these holes to attack your computer.

I had a call from one of my clients; calling with great concern. “We really need to get new computers!” I asked. “Why?” Client, “Because on April 8th our computer will stop working.” The truth of the matter is, your computers will continue to run and you can still use them. They will not shut down and be un-usable. You will just have to be more careful when using them when they are connected to the Internet. If you only use them to access your local network and they are not connected to the Internet, they will still work for years.

I hear people complaining and saying how can Microsoft do this to them. Why are they always making us upgrade? The simple truth is, these companies can’t keep programmers busy working on old technology when the new technology is now humming along.

So if you didn’t upgrade. I would suggest now would be a great time to put your plan into effect and get those old Windows XP computers off your desk and step up to Windows 7.

Last note, Windows 8.1 is getting a major over haul and the start menu is coming back for your operating enjoyment.

Bye XP

 

Browser Wars

If you have been into computers for as long as I have you will remember that we had a browser war back in the 90′s. At the time there were two players Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator.

The reason this war started in the first place was because Bill Gates from Microsoft said that the Internet was just a fad and in a few years would go away. Until he began to watch Netscape Navigator’s bottom line profits go through the roof. Then old Bill doing what he did best decided he would steal the market share and make everyone use his crap browser called, Internet Explorer 1.0. If you enjoyed bad dreams and night terrors then this was the browser for you. So how would old Bill get everyone to switch to his browser and leave Netscape?

Easy enough, he will build it into every copy of Windows 95. Of course this was a great idea! Not really Microsoft got sued for trying to create a monopoly and lost and had to make it so that you could remove Internet Explorer from your computer.

Why am I writing about this in today’s modern world? Because folks we are still having browser wars. Netscape is long gone but has rolled into a FREE browser known as Fire Fox. We also have a offering from the KINGS of the Internet Google called Chrome. Internet Explorer is still around and still being used for some unknown reason. There is also some you may not know about. Opera, Safari from Apple. They all do basically the same thing. They open the door for you to the World Wide Web.

Browsers

Shopping Online

Back in the day when I owned my Internet Service people were very scared to post any personal information. All of this has changed and now we have our entire lives online.

Shopping online has really taken off over the years. Today there are people who never go to a brick and mortar store. This is because shopping online is just so convenient. You please a order and in a few day’s your order is sitting on your front porch.

The main thing to remember when you are shopping online is to watch the web address in your address bar. Once you are in the check out cart if you don’t see a padlock before the HTTP then don’t order from that site. The padlock tells you that you transaction will not be seen by prying eyes.

And with most of today’s brick and mortar stores having a online store it is easy as ever for you to shop at your favorite store. If you are not yet shopping online give it a try and you will be amazed of low prices.

Shopping

Web Protection

Sometimes we need protection from our actions.  I often have clients ask me, “What did I do wrong, why do I keep getting all of this bad stuff on my computer?”

The answer to this statement is simple. You don’t have to do anything wrong. Your kids might also be the best kids in the world and look at nothing wrong. The truth is advertising companies are sneaky. They have ways of installing adware and spyware onto your computer without you knowing about it.

It is funny that we see this practice effecting only Windows computers. This is because there are always ways that these companies can find to install software onto your computer without you knowing.

There are a few easy fixes to help you stay out of trouble.

1. Setup up a standard user account on your computer. This way you won’t be logged into the computer as the administrator. Then if something wants to install you will know because it will ask you for your password.

2. Don’t use Internet Explorer! Use a better safer web browser such as, Fire Fox or Chrome.

3. Keep your anti spyware and anti virus up to date.

4. Use this add on for your browser call Web Of Trust. It will alert you if the web site you are visiting is trying to install something onto your computer.

WOB

Photography

I was working with a new sports shooter the other day who was getting discouraged. I explained that photography is tough because with every change we make to our setting we effect something else with the picture.

As photographers we can not get discouraged. We need to learn from our mistakes. Use these simple steps each time you go to shoot and you should have a good starting point to get over your aggravations.

1. As soon as you take you camera out of the bag. Turn it on and check your settings. The ISO, good starting points for inside is 800, if you are shooting outside start with 100.

2. This is when you select what setting to use. Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority or Manual? Once you choose one stick with it throughout your shoot. Just don’t put the camera on automatic!

3. Try not to chimp! To CHIMP is to look at the display after each shot. When I shoot I concentrate on the subjects I am shooting. When I get into post I can edit out any issues.  They only thing we can’t correct is blown out shots. There is no detail to correct.

4. After the shoot. Whip your camera down before placing it back into your bag. I also reset all of of my setting back to ISO 100 and Shutter Priority.

Picture Taking

Kids Programming

That is correct, as most schools are still teaching keyboarding and spread sheets our school is teaching kids to program! We have worked hard and transformed our business / keyboarding class into a modern times 21st century classroom.

If you work for a school or if you run a district and would like to move your district into the future and out of the 1900′s contact me and together we can work on a plan to move your kids into the future.

We have our students programming in “Scratch” this is a free web based programming interface created and supported by MIT.

Scratch gives the students an easy way to understand programming on a logic fashion. They pull in each command rather then typing it into an IDE. When they pull in the command they can run the program and see what effect the command issued has on the entire program.

One young man created a two player game that as he puts it has a automatic gravity pull. I asked, “What this does for the over all game?” He told me, “It keeps the characters from flying off the screen if you do not keep hitting the up arrow key.” He then added, “If you don’t play the game the character will simply fall to the ground and then game over.”

To say the least I was impressed. Computer classes have come a long way from simply learning keyboarding and Microsoft Office. My hat goes off to the teachers of today, pushing the kids and opening their minds to create the programming we need for years to come.

Scratch

Cell Phone Gaming

It amazes me how many kids of all ages I see playing on their parents cell phones. Did you ever wonder who that two or three year old might be calling? Grandma or grand pap maybe?

Not at all, the kids are being entertained with games on the cell phone. These games are normally placed there by the mother who knows how to keep her children calm and relaxed.

I have to admit I have Flappy Bird on my iPhone. I have found when I am at a doctors office or sometimes just sitting in the recliner I like to smash into some pipes every once in awhile.

The really sad part about this is that the hand held gaming devices are becoming less of a desire for the youths today. Even if the kids don’t have a cell phone to play on you will find them carrying an iPod touch. Which is really just a cell phone without the cell radio part build into them.

Kids are growing up in a much different world and time then when I grew up. I think I heard that same statement coming from my dad when I was young. When my friend and I was sitting in front of a TV watching a little speck of light bouncing back and forth across the screen. Or shooting alien invaders until our fingers felt like they were going to fall off of our hands.

I often sit around and wonder what the next big thing will be for the gaming industry?

Cell Gaming