technology

Interview With J Matthew Neal, Author of "Specific Gravity"

Dr. J. Matthew Neal was born in Muncie, Indiana, where he has resided much of his life. Although he has been a medical writer for many years, “Specific Gravity” is his first novel. As a physician and residency program director, he has found plenty of inspiration in the medical field for his fiction.

Tyler: Welcome, Matt. Thank you for joining me today. To begin, I understand “Specific Gravity” is a thriller with Dr. Alexander (Alex) Darkkin as its main character. Will you tell us a little bit about Alex and why you think readers will find him to be an attractive character?

Matt: Alex is a complicated guy with lots of problems, and at first probably won’t seem likeable to readers at all. He’s a brilliant cancer specialist who has also created his own medical software company. He’s good-looking, smart, and has money-but is also an obnoxious, womanizing alcoholic who is unhappy with his superficial life and self-destructing relationships. He’s tried therapy, AA, and religion, none of which seem to be working.

But he has a deeper side that he doesn’t yet realize, and much of the story revolves around his self-reflection and realization that he can do much to help those other than himself. He just needs a special person to show him the way.

Tyler: Is Alex haunted by demons that led him to womanizing and alcoholism? Would you tell us a little bit about his past before the book begins?

Matt: Alex felt he didn’t have a very good paternal role model; his father Conrad was an alcoholic who cheated on Alex’s mother on numerous occasions. His sister left town after high school and developed a relationship with a normal, “surrogate” family (the Mendozas); meanwhile Alex stayed fairly close to home, and lives in Nashville. He never saw his parents in a loving marriage, and as a result, finds it difficult to engage in lengthy relationships. Despite seeming arrogant, he actually suffers from low self-esteem and depression, and this has resulted in dependence on alcohol and frequent one-night stands.

Tyler: What is the situation Alex finds himself in that is the focus of the novel?

Matt:Alex, hoping that a change of location will do him some good, relocates to San Diego for six months to fill in for his sister Wendy’s friend who is taking a sabbatical. After his arrival, he curiously inspects the files of a patient who recently died-billionaire pharmaceutical CEO John Markham. His software background leads him to discover that Markham’s medical records may have been altered, and he comes up with a theory that Markham may in fact have been murdered. Unfortunately, he can’t seem to convince the police or anyone else, and realizes he can’t do it alone. He then reluctantly seeks the aid of Wendy’s best friend, Bonnie Mendoza.

Tyler: Tell us a little bit about Bonnie and her involvement in the story.

Matt: The arrogant Alex finally meets his match in deaf forensic scientist Bonnie Mendoza-a mathematical and lexical genius …

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Computer Viruses and How to Deal With Them

1- What is a computer virus:

A computer virus is a software program which is able to replicate itself and spread from one infected computer to another. The infected objects can be system, program or document files. After infecting your computer, it might slow it down, damage the contents of the infected files, mislay the data or defect your computer systems normal operation.

The virus can also use your computer to propagate illegal adverts and send spam emails that exploit security (adWare), steal your personal information such as bank account number, credit card number etc. (SpyWare). Some types of viruses might use your computer to create a bot net (virtual computer network) to attack other server systems and websites etc.

2- Type of viruses on Windows based computers:

There are a number of computer viruses that can impede the functioning of your computer. Here are some of the different types of viruses:

Trojan Horse: It is an email virus that is created by a file attached to the email. If opened, it may scour your hard drive for any personal and financial information such as your social security, account and PIN numbers. Once it has collected your info, it is sent via the internet to a hacker or thief.

Macro Virus: It is a computer virus that infects the Visual Basic language documents for applications such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel etc. This type of virus can cause damage (such as removing data on the hard disk for example).

Worms: It is a program that has the ability to self-replicate itself. It can move from one computer to another and replicate itself in your computer system then spread hundreds of its copies to other computers that might cause wide spread damage.

Rootkit Virus: It is a program that is possible to cover the processes, files and data in the computer Registry (a database which is used to save Windows’s system and program settings). Rootkit is usually used to hide the activities of viruses and processes which harm your computer. It is to help a hacker to control the system.

Bootsector Virus: A virus which attaches itself to the first part of the hard disk that is read by the computer upon bootup. These are normally spread by floppy disks.

Logic Bombs: It is a program that is used to send many data to the same email address and overwhelm the system or block the server connection. It is also used to threaten others (for example mail bomb etc.).

Memory Resident Virus: This type of virus dwells in the RAM. From there it can overcome and interrupt the operations executed by the system. It can corrupt files and programs that are opened, closed, copied, renamed etc.

Multipartite Virus: These viruses spread in multiple ways. It might vary in its action depending upon where it’s installed and the presence of certain files.

3- How do you get a virus and Prevention:

These are 3 common ways that your computer may get infected …

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Top 25 Terms All Computer Students Should Know

The following basic terminologies are considered the top 25 terms all computer students should know before they even begin their studies:

1. Bit: Binary data storage unit valued at either 1 or 0.

2. Byte: Eight data bits valued between zero and 255.

3. Word: Two data bytes or 16 data bits valued between zero and 16,535.

4. CD-ROM: A storage disk with approximately 640 megabytes of capacity.

5. CD-ROM Drive: Hardware used for reading and writing to CD-ROMs.

6. Storage Media: Magnetic devices that permanently store computer data.

7. File: Permanent storage structure for data kept on a hard drive or other permanent place.

8. Virus: Unauthorized programs that infect files or send themselves via email.

9. Vulnerability: When unauthorized access can be gained due to software errors.

10. Security Flaw: When attackers gain unauthorized system access due to a software bug.

11. Worm: Unwanted programs accessing computers via application/system vulnerabilities.

12. Hardware: Physical parts of computer (case, disk drive, monitor, microprocessor, etc.).

13. Software: Programs that run on a computer system.

14. Firmware: Software that has been permanently written into a computer.

15. ISP: Internet Service Provider.

16. BIOS: The basic input/output system computers use to interface with devices.

17. MIME: Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension.

18. Boot: What happens when a computer is turned on and beginning to run.

19. Crash: When computer software errors occur and programs fail to respond.

20. Driver: Program that understands interfaced devices like printers and video cards.

21. Network: Cables and other electrical components carrying data between computers.

22. Operating System: A computer’s core software component.

23. Parallel: Sending data over more than one line simultaneously.

24. Serial: Sending data over a single line one bit at a time.

25. Protocols: Communication methods and other standard Internet/networking functions.

These are the top 25 terms all computer students should know before they even begin their technical training. Most computer students know much more. In fact, everyone who uses a computer these days should understand these terms so they can be better informed about the important tool that is so integral to our daily lives.…

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For Or Against Protection Spyware Software?

There are people arguing for or against protection spyware software. People against protection spyware claim that anti-virus software created by professionals such as McAfee, Symantec and Norton already have built-in utilities that protect against spyware. Since I myself use Symantec Anti-virus, I can vouch for the truth of this claim. Symantec does indeed have spyware and privacy protection controls built into the firewall of their anti-virus suite.

On the other hand, there are people who claim that software created to specifically target spyware have more functionality when it comes to task specific usage against spyware. Whereas built-in spyware protection in anti-virus are more generic in usability, anti-spyware specific software are more versatile and customizable which therefore makes it more efficient in fighting against spyware. No matter which way you look at it, both sides hold valid points when it comes to the “for or against protection spyware software” argument. It is true that anti-spyware can be built into anti-virus programs and it is equally true that independent anti-spyware specific programs have more functionality within their own niches.

Upon further consideration, the argument for or against protection spyware is moot since having a broad, generic anti-spyware protection program working together with a narrow, specific anti-spyware utility is an ideal for all computer owners who use their units extensively with the internet. The advantage of having built-in anti-spyware in anti-virus programs can be found specifically in definitions. Anti-virus creators have long experience in seeking out and defining new viruses as they are introduced to the internet.

This experience with definitions carried over into the anti-spyware field becomes a big plus for the built-in option. On the other hand, experiencing usability by having multi-task specific functions in independent anti-spyware utilities is also an advantage because of a more versatile control system.

Having two utilities working hand in hand to provide you with adequate protection and repair tools is the biggest advantage of all. Both systems work to prevent spyware invasion and also provide two databases for definitions instead of just one. The advantage of a firewall working for you at the same time that anti-spyware utilities perform their duty is definitely a must have. As mathematicians of the ancient world used to say, “One and one make two”. In the end, arguments for or against spyware protection both win the contest as having both of them can only lead to better protection from privacy thieves.…

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What is a GPS Watch, What Does it Do, and How Can it Help Me With My Fitness Program?

GPS watches utilize a network of global positioning satellites to precisely track how far and how fast you are running, biking, or swimming. Anytime. Anywhere in the world. It will measure your real-time speed, average speed and maximum speed. It calculates your pace, average pace and best pace, tracks your workout distance, and also functions as a continuous odometer. Whether you’re buying one for yourself or purchasing a gift for someone else, we’re here to help you understand what you’re buying. We’ll guide you to match the right technology for your intended use or to maximize your training or exercise experience.

What does a GPS watch do and how can it help me with my fitness program?

The first thing that comes to people’s mind is that a GPS watch will tell them the direction they’re heading (i.e. North by Northeast) or street address similar to what a car’s navigation system does. This is not true. Although GPS (Global Positional System) watches use the same principles, it is not nearly as sophisticated. Like your car’s navigation system, it communications with the satellites in orbit around the earth to determine your exact coordinates each second while you move. It then sends this information to the watch to calculate your velocity and distance traveled between each set of coordinates.

So why does this matter to me if I’m a runner, cyclist, rower, skier or walker?

Because now you can get the most critical information about your workout that you could never get previously unless you exercised at a track or some other pre-measured course. Namely, how far did I go and how fast did I get there? A GPS watch will provide you with all this information. Here’s some typical data collected from a runner’s workout:

  • The Average Speed during the run was 7.5 miles per hour.
  • The Maximum Speed achieved was 9.0 miles per hour.
  • The Average Pace during the run was 8 minute miles.
  • The Best Pace achieved was 6.5 minute miles.
  • The Total Distance was 3.5 miles.
  • The Total Time was 28 minutes.

This is great information to know so you can target improvements in your exercise program and monitor how you’re performing toward meeting those goals. And you can go anywhere. You’re not constrained by a specific circuit or measured course. Just run, walk or cycle anywhere you want and the GPS watch will perform the calculations no matter where you go. This technology works anywhere in the world because the GPS system is designed to receive information from up to 12 satellites at any one time that are located on the same side of the earth as you. If you’re serious about getting fit or improving upon your current fitness regime, a GPS Watch is a great training tool to own.

So now that you understand how a GPS Watch works and what it can do, choose the model is right for you. Here are the main options to look for:

Heart Rate Monitoring – Some GPS …

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Computer Engineering Has Changed the World and the Way We Study Engineering

Computer Engineering has Changed the World When we were kids, no one had a computer and few ever imagined such a thing as a personal computer. The closest we came was a word processor. By the late 80’s and early 90’s the personal computer began to gain traction and when online services and then the internet gained a foothold, computers became more than just calculators or digital game machines. Moore’s law, named for Gordon Moore, Intel’s founder, stated that,” the number of transistors that can be placed cheaply on an integrated circuit will double every two years”. This remarkable statement has proved to be true and may be the central reason for the explosion of the internet and personal computing.

In the old days people commuted to jobs where they might use tools such as calculators, typewriters (or word processors,), copy machines, printers, fax machines as well as basic paper, pens, pencils and rulers to perform their jobs. On their off time they might read the paper, watch the game or a movie or talk to a friend. If the friend lived far away one had to call long distance on the phone. These days you can do all of these things simultaneously online while also doing your job! Computer engineers have created and continue to create a world of seemingly endless possibilities. The more people coming online offers more opportunity to design applications that entertain, educate and provide solutions to the challenges of our lives. Society has changed in so many ways, not the least in the ways we are educated and obtain the degrees and certifications required to get fulfilling careers with high salaries. Schools are offering access to degrees programs online. This allows for more flexible schedules which can mean the difference for those who already need to be working while the obtain the degree that can bring them to the next level in their career or create the opportunities college degrees can offer.

Many search engine university sites showcase innovative, online degree programs from new and more established schools alike. Prospective students should browse schools and request information about their programs. It doesn’t cost anything to get educated about getting educated! It makes sense to look into several schools to decide which school and program is the right one to achieve your career goals in computer engineering.

These schools are but a few of the quality schools featured on bestcollegeengineeringdegree.com that offer computer engineering. If you are interested in a college degree in computer engineering, you owe it to yourself to research programs and your options regarding online and traditional campus schools.…

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Dubstep Music Mastering – Part 2

Never go past 0 DB.

Carefully monitor every process to ensure the levels never creeps past 0DB, this tends to happen more when using heavy limiting in dubstep, but can also happen with aggressive EQ.

A / B Properly.

An easy mistake to make is to make poor judgments by A / B testing to quickly. For example, when applying compression the better setting might not sound so good initially because its not as loud. However once normalized its would be the superior setting. Also A / B test by quickly switching between two or three of your favorite dubstep tracks to see how those producers do things.

Get your dubstep studio as quiet as possible.

Although good dubstep monitoring equipment is essential, it can be wasted money if your room is not set up properly. Some quick and easy tips are to get silent fans in your computer, and invest in some acoustic tiles to dampen pre-delay and early reflections. Essentially your room will be acting like a reverb plug-in without you adding some kind of sound dampening. This can result in over, or under use of EQ.

Test, Test, Test against other dubstep tracks.

A good idea is to listen to your efforts on as many systems and spaces as possible and pay close attention to the results. Over time this will teach you how your mix translates over multiple systems, although to perfect can take more than a lifetime. This is why a mastering engineer is worth his weight in gold. Or printer ink (as thats more expensive than gold!).

Learn the frequencies.

This might sound obvious, but building a mental picture of the dubstep frequency range in your head will pay dividends in all areas of dubstep production. In my view it maybe the most important thing in getting you mix and mastering efforts right. Try and attach words to each area, like warmth (220-320), muddiness (340), knock (600-1k), clarity (4k-7.5k) etc.

Cut it out.

When mixing / mastering dubstep (forget sonic sculpting) its near always better to make a frequency cut, rather than a boost. This is because the human brain will deem a sound more natural sounding by using a cut because that is what happens in the real world, sounds are absorbed by different materials (like wood, and concrete) resulting in certain frequencies being removed. Therefore when boosting EQ the brain will not be as used to it as a frequency cut. A good trick if you do want to boost a frequency is to cut all the other frequencies apart from the one you want to boost and then turn the whole volume up. As a rule a 1DB boost is equivalent to a 3DB cut. …

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Wireless USB Adapters Explained

For your laptop to connect to your Wireless Network it must have a wireless adapter or wireless NIC. Such adapters are small radio transmitter / receivers which allow your Laptop to send and receive radio signals.

Three main types of Wi-Fi adapters are available: Wireless Nics, PCMCIA cards and USB Wireless Adapters. Some newer laptops and computers come with integrated wireless adapter chips.

All common adapters support either Ethernet (wired) or Wi-Fi (wireless) standards. USB Wireless Adapters are usually small and connect to your laptop through a USB port. An advantage to a USB type Adapter is that it can be swapped between laptops or desks easily.

Two kinds of wireless USB adapters are marketed by some manufactures; A "compact" model for travelers and a "basic" model for office or home use.

These adapters draw their power from the host laptop or computer and therefore do not require a separate power cord. The adapter's wireless antenna is always external to the computer and on some units the antenna can be adjusted manually to improve the Wi-Fi reception.

Because of the small size of these adapters and the fact that they are easy to setup they are a very attractive choice for those who want a network setup that is simple.

Some wireless network users prefer to buy a brand of adapter that matches the router that they have or are purchasing. Some manufactures even sell the router and adapters as a bundle referred to as a home network kit.

For security reasons it is best to disable wireless network adapters when not in use. This capability is typically provided by the adapter's software. …

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What is the Difference Between Compiling and Debugging?

Debugging:-Computer programmers, like everybody else, are not perfect. This means the programs they write sometimes have small errors, called “bugs,” in them. These bugs can be minor, such as not recognizing user input, or more serious, such as a memory leak that crashes the program. Before releasing their software to the public, programmers “debug” their programs, eliminating as many errors as possible. This debugging process often takes a long time, as fixing some errors may introduce others.

Compiling:-When programmers create software programs, they first write the program in source code, which is written in a specific programming language, such as C or Java. These source code files are saved in a text-based, human-readable format, which can be opened and edited by programmers. However, the source code cannot be run directly by the computer. In order for the code to be understood by the computer’s CPU, it must be compiled into an executable program.

Most software development programs include a compiler, which compiles source code files into machine code. This code, sometimes referred to as object code, can be executed directly by the computer’s processor. Therefore, the resulting application is often referred to as an executable file. Windows executable files have a .EXE file extension, while Mac OS X programs have .APP extension, which is often hidden.

So the conclusion is a compiled program may have errors or bugs but not a successfully debugged program cannot have any.

So for a perfect program you need to debug and compile a program…

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Why Your Computer Crime Attorney Needs to Understand Computer Forensics

When you are charged with a computer crime, you want an attorney that will do everything he or she can to defend you. Staying out of prison, avoiding a criminal record and protecting your family is important to you. Then why would you hire an attorney for a computer crime if that attorney doesn’t know anything about computer forensics?

As an attorney, we have to be experts in everything. That’s what makes this job so fun. While we cannot be experts in everything all of the time, we need to have a basic understanding of the issues that we will face. Its the same reason why the days of the general practitioner are pretty much dead. There is just too much out there to know. Thus, I don’t expect that many attorneys will become a computer forensics expert, they should have a basic understanding of what it is and how to use it to craft a defense. However, most don’t because many lawyers went to law school before the modern computer became common place. Thus, many still have a fear of computers and technology in general. Even though this attorney may be great in other areas, selecting this same attorney to defend you in your computer crimes case could lead to disaster.

Computer forensics is the art and science of applying computer science to aid the legal process. It is a vast subject area that first requires a deep knowledge of computers and networks which is why many lawyers don’t even bother learning it. Thus, it is impossible to even tough on the most basic concepts of computer forensics in this article. Instead, I will highlight how and why it is important for the lawyer to understand computer forensics when defending computer crime cases.

In just about every case, the State will have a computer crime expert who will discuss computer forensics. Thus, you may need an expert as well. If you have one, he or she can help you make sense out of their expert’s reports and testimony. However, this person is not a lawyer. Relying solely on their input essentially turns the defense of the case over to a non-lawyer. Would you want a surgeon to operate on you based upon the advice of someone who is not a doctor? Furthermore, you may not always be fortunate enough to have a client that can afford an expert. Thus, you need to be able to understand what their expert is saying both in their reports and testimony.

This will also prevent the “deer in a headlights” look that experts often create when they “teach” the defense lawyer. As the defense lawyer, you should be doing the teaching, not the State’s expert. However, I have seen defense lawyers ask open ended questions in an attempt to understand the expert’s testimony. The expert winds up doing more damage that they did on direct as the expert is teaching everyone, including the jury and the defense lawyer on cross examination. This leads …

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