Technology

Sat
20
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Service Pack

A Service Pack (more commonly known as "SP") is a software program that corrects known bugs, problems, or adds new features (and/or both). Companies that produce large applications such as Microsoft and their Windows NT-based operating systems ... typically release a service pack when the number of individual patches to the application becomes too large. Service Packs are easier to install than groups of patches, especially with multiple computers that need to be updated over a network. Windows NT 4.0 currently has 6 Service Packs. Windows 2000 currently has 4 Service Packs. Windows XP ... (view more)

Thu
18
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Web Radio

Internet radio is a broadcasting service transmitted via the Internet. Not every internet "radio station" has a corresponding traditional radio station. Many internet radio stations are completely independent from traditional ("terrestrial") radio ... stations and broadcast only on the Internet. Broadcasting on the Internet is usually referred to as streaming. Because the radio signal is relayed over the Internet, it is possible to access the stations from anywhere in the world -- for example, to listen to an Australian radio station from Europe or America. This makes it a popular service for ... (view more)

Tue
16
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Sound Card

A sound card is a computer expansion card that can input and output sound under program control. Most personal computers today have sound cards built onto the main board and do not require a secondary / separate sound card. Sound Cards: General ... Characteristics A typical sound card includes a sound chip usually featuring a digital-to-analog converter that converts recorded or generated digital waveforms of sound into an analog format. This signal is led to a (earphone-type) connector where a cable to an amplifier or similar sound destination can be plugged in. More advanced designs usually ... (view more)

Thu
11
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Spyware

Spyware is a broad category of malicious software intended to intercept or take partial control of a computer's operation without the user's informed consent. While the term taken literally suggests software that surreptitiously monitors the user, ... it has come to refer more broadly to software that subverts the computer's operation for the benefit of a third party. Spyware differs from viruses and worms in that it does not usually self-replicate. Like many recent viruses, spyware is designed to exploit infected computers for commercial gain. Typical tactics furthering this goal include ... (view more)

Wed
10
Aug
Dennis Faas's picture

Dictionary Attack

A dictionary attack refers to the general technique of trying to guess some secret by running through a list of likely possibilities, often a list of words from a dictionary. It contrasts to a brute force attack in which all possibilities are tried. ... The attack works because users often choose easy-to-guess passwords, even after being exhorted against doing so. Dictionary (and brute force) attacks may be applied in two main situations: in cryptanalysis, in trying to determine the key needed to decrypt a given piece of encrypted data; in computer security, in trying to gain unauthorized access ... (view more)

Tue
23
Nov
Dennis Faas's picture

Calculate employee hours worked using Excel?

Infopackets Reader Katia E. writes: " Hi Dennis! I need your help in solving a little dilemma. I created a simple Excel spreadsheet to calculate the employee work hours from a time card. The problem is that I just cannot find a formula that will add ... the total hours worked everyday, in order to get a total of hours worked for the week. For example, the time card contains the following information: SAT --, SUN --, MON 8:31am, TUE 8:33am, WED 8:43am, THU 8:12am, FRI 9:00am. Any help you can give me to leave this frustration behind is greatly appreciated! " My response: This is actually ... (view more)

Tue
11
Feb
Dennis Faas's picture

Complexity Analysis

I'm swamped! I spent the majority of this weekend writing and re-writing the email list-management program which will automate requests for users who subscribe, remove, and change their email address to this newsletter online the infopackets web ... site. After much thought, I completed the program on Saturday using a very rudimentary algorithm. The program worked very well with small lists used for test data, but took exponentially long to complete when I tested it against all the user names that make up our mailing list [40,000]. Measuring how long it takes for a program or operation to ... (view more)

Tue
04
Feb
Dennis Faas's picture

Data Structures, Arrays, and Linked Lists

I'm finally making some leeway on the web site transformation. I spent a good part of this weekend working on a web script that is going to completely automate newsletter subscriptions and removals, plus allow me to manage changes in subscriptions ... so that I can *finally* implement a text-version of this newsletter. This solution will give readers the choice of receiving the Gazette twice or three times a week! It took me about 8 hours to figure out how to dereference a multidimensional array which points to another array structure in PERL (a web script programming language). This is pretty ... (view more)

Thu
19
Sep
Dennis Faas's picture

Algorithms are a Computer Programmer's best friend

After typing up some heavy-duty Gazette articles this week, I thought I'd take a break and just shoot the breeze. Yeah, yesterday's article was pretty hardcore. I kind of figured that it would be over the head of some readers... but maybe that's the ... kind of stuff you need to appreciate. Hey, I never understood everything while I was at the University of Windsor as a Computer Science undergraduate. My biggest problem when learning / reading new information was accepting the fact that I didn't understand it. It's hard to visualize things that you don't understand. Eventually I just accepted ... (view more)

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