Digital Tools

CODING
1. MatLab MathWorks.
2. VBA, Visual Basic for Applications, is a programming language used within Excel to develop macros.
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TECHNICAL CURRICULUM
1. Lynda.com is a great online technical school.  All that you want to know and learn about computer software is here.
2. Udacity is a terrific school.  Lots of courses for free.  Yes!
3. Udemy.com is another great online technical school.  If your son or daughter wants to learn, this is the place.  If your daughter or boy wants to improve on their knowledge, these are the places.  Here is a brief endorsement of Udemy from a subscriber at Bill Myers’ site:

“I have subscribed to about 10 courses on Udemy. Three of them were free, the rest of them range in price from $29 to $180. I always wait for the half-price offers from Udemy, but I really like the fact that there’s no time limit for completion of the course and that it’s always there whenever you want to watch.

They offer a 30-day trial, which is great. One course I subscribed to was very good, but it had absolutely nothing for me because it turned out to be based on using Adobe Illustrator. Udemy refunded my money within two hours.

You can download courses, transfer them to a Kindle Fire or your laptop for viewing offline. I have seen the courses offered increase at a rapid pace, which . . . also noted Udemy’s growing popularity.”  Check out this of Udemy courses for $10 each.  Use the code UDLEARNFEST to get that price.
4. w3schools is the largest web development site.  Great resource.
5. SkillShare.com.
6.  Find more courses here.
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EMAIL
1. Cold Calling Email.
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ENGINEERING 
1. ANSYS, engineering software company out of Pittsburgh.
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2D & 3D DESIGN
1. AutoCad.  Here is a little background.
2.  SolidWorks, 3D AutoCad
3.  Learn InDesign.  Here are some tutorials. Gary North admits that “InDesign is the premier typesetting program.”
4.  One subscriber suggested using FrameMaker over InDesign, followed up with an article here.
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EXCEL
1.  How to export Excel as a web page.
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PRODUCT LIFE CYCLE MANAGEMENT
1.  ArenaSolutions.
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PROFESSIONAL FLOW CHART & DIAGRAM SOFTWARE
1.  Microsoft Visio.
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COLLABORATION TOOLS
1. SharePoint.
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BUSINESS
1.  Business Application & Technologies.
2.  Google’s Keyword Planner.
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WRITER
Everybody uses MS Word documents for writing.  I know I do.  But I also use Google Docs and Libre Office.  So I thought I would link here Libre Office’s online support forum. Libre Office Tools.

TOP 10 TECH FORUMS
1.  Ubuntu.  The leading OS for PCs, IoT devices, . . . an open source software operating system that runs from the desktop, to the cloud, to all your internet connected things.
2.  Tech Report.  PC hardware explored.
3.  Technet from Microsoft.  home for all resources and tools designed to help IT professionals succeed withMicrosoft products and technologies.
4.  Tom’s Hardware.
5.  TechPowerup.
6.  Stackoverflow.  the largest online community for programmers to learn, share their knowledge, and advance their careers.
7.  CNET forum.
8.  Blackhatworld.  The home of Internet Marketing?
9.  site point.  Learn Web Design & Development with SitePoint tutorials, courses and books – HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, PHP, mobile app development.
10.  techexams.  offers free practice exams, study guides and active forums for IT certifications including MCTS, MCITP, A+, Network+, Security+, CCNA, CCIE,
11.  TechCrunch.  leading technology media property, dedicated to obsessively profiling startups, reviewing new Internet products, and breaking tech news.
12.  TechInsider.  This looks like Business Insider’s tech edition.  Yep.  Caption for their Google entry reads “Real-time market data.”
13.  News, Reviews & More–TechMousse.com.  100% made in Italy?
14.  The Verge.  founded in 2011 in partnership with Vox Media, and covers the intersection of technology, science, art, and culture. Its mission is to offer in-depth
15.  Mashable.  global, multi-platform media and entertainment company.
16.  Engadget / Technology News, Advice and Features. original home for technology news and reviews. Since its founding in 2004, we’ve grown from an exhaustive source for consumer tech news to a
17.  The Next Web–International technology news, business, and culture.  the latest news from the US about business, technology and Web culture.
18.  DigitalTrends.com.  Okay, on the 3rd party site that I found this link, it read DigitelTrends, and I thought for a moment that someone couldn’t spell too well.
19.  GSM phone reviews, news, opinions, votes, manuals and more . . .
20.  TheoreX.  http://forum.theorex.tech.
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TECHNOLOGY SITES
1.  Life Hacker
2.  Gawker
3.  GeekPress
4.  Gizmodo
5.  Wired
6.  The Verge
7.  Digital Trends
8.  TechDar
9.  Mashable
10. Tech2
11. The Next Web
12. TechCrunch
13. Technorati
14. Tech Dirt
15. Technology Review
16. Slashdot
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TOOLS
1.  A few tools here.
2.  WordPress.com Support Forum. Don’t leave home without it.
3.  Affiliate links email campaigns.
4.  Stripe for online payments.  How does it compare to PayPal?  Good question.
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AH, OUR BELOVED PHONES
A friend asked yesterday, Wednesday, May 10, 2017, if companies can snoop on you by snooping on your call, text, and browsing activity on your phone.  I assumed, yes, since if you’re using your company’s app, you are surrendering your personal data and personal contacts.  So I checked online this morning and found a couple of things.  Here is one:

Even if you are not sure, always assume yes. Even if you are sure, they might have a contract with the ISP, a rogue admin who installed a packetlogger, a video camera that catches your screen… yes.

Everything you do at the workplace is visible to everyone. Especially everything you do on digital media. Especially personal things. Especially things you would not want them to see.

One of the basic rules of Information Security is that whoever has physical access to the machine, has the machine. Your employer has physical access to everything: the machine, the network, the infrastructure. He can add and change policies, install certificates, play man in the middle. Even websites with ‘SSL’ can be intercepted. There are plenty of valid reasons for this, mostly related to their own network security (antivirus, logging, prohibiting access to certain sites or functionalities).

Even if you get lucky and they cannot see the contents of your messages, they might still be able to see a lot of other things: how many connections you made, to which sites, how much data you sent, at what times… even when using your own device, even using a secure connection, network logs can be pretty revealing.

Please, when you are at work, or using a work computer, or even using your own computer on the company network: always assume everything you do can be seen by your employer.

So what this tells me is that your employer has a lot of control over the app.  This should spell trouble for anyone.  So be cautious.

Then there was this dated gem:

Employer monitoring is “becoming more and more common,” says Galen M. Hair, Partner at Varadi, Hair & Checki and Rocket Lawyer On Call attorney. “More frequently, however, employers are subject to lawsuits.”

So beware, my young Miles Cavendish.

False reassurance is given by folks saying if you’re on your company’s network, then you’re vulnerable.  But that’s not where it ends either.  What happens is that your network provider, like Verizon or AT&T will sell or leak that data to the highest bidder.

MetroPCS is owned by T-Mobile.  And we all should remind ourselves what Verizon did back in 2012.  So what we’re confronted with her is passive surveillance by general data collection, more aggressive surveillance from employers who pay 3rd party data collectors and who might pay someone at your network to access your data, and then there is criminal surveillance.  It’s all criminal.  The East German Stazi are amateurs compared to what we face in the U.S. and around the world today.

Then there’s this and this.  Talk about a wicked web.

REVERSE LOOK-UPS

Not all paid reverse lookup sites are alike.  And not all phone numbers are registered the same way.  Some are protected by their carrier.

Reverse look-up directory use only publicly available information. Numbers that are are either unlisted or unassigned are not listed. Also, some carriers do not disclose their numbers for their cell phone customers to avoid unwanted calls.

And then certain numbers go undetected for other reasons :

. . . prepaid phones, public phones or online VoIP numbers (such as Vonage, Skype or MagicJack numbers). In these cases there is just no trace of an owner.

TEXTS

Some phones retain 100% of your texts.  I know that iPhones keep your texts.  But Androids, like Metro PCS does not seem to keep 100% of your texts.  Here is one commenter at Quora.

Short answer, you can’t. Long answer, I’m not sure about Metro but the major carriers (ie: Verizon, AT+T, Sprint…etc) are not allowed by Law to retrieve deleted messages unless subpoened by the court for a legal case or at the request of Representative Attorney on a legal case, not even for the customer themselves. They are governed by law to protect CPNI (Customer Propietary Network Information) so you can’t request them to retrieve that info unless you have an attorney and a pending court case that specifically needs that information. I’ve seen some comments about a hacker that can get that info by hacking into (fill in the blank) but I would be very wary about going that route due to the illegality of it. So the choice is yours…Good Luck.

SPOOKS
1. You can be photographed through walls in 3D via Wi-Fi.
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