Daily Databases

I use QuickBooks 2008 on a daily basis. I use this database to keep track of personal and professional financials. With QuickBooks I input bills, investment distributions, run financial reports and so much more. I can run a report that will tell me how much money was paid to a specific vendor this year There really is no much I can not do with this database. If necessary  can run a report that is already saved in the database and tweak it a tiny bit in order to customize the report for my needs. I can schedule bills to be paid ahead of time and even schedule something called a Memorized Transaction. This way a bill that is a set amount that i pay on a specific day of each month can be memorized and automatically paid. I can manipulate the register to reflect the exact way I paid something and add details of a transaction that may not come over from a deposit or payment transaction. It is a very good database. I say it is good because it is super user friendly and it has so many functions and you can keep track of more than one company. So it is for individual personal use and for professional use of several entities. The one improvement I can think of making is that you should be able to add math functions/formulas to reports run in QuickBooks instead of having to export them to excel to make those type of changes.

PC vs. Person to Person

I absolutely LOVE stationary, and I have recently found a place that offers wonderful stationary products. The ladies are really knowledgeable about the different things that their stationary store offers… fancy script or kid-like font? folding card or post card? High quality paper or more casual freindly looking paper? I could go on and on and they could go on longer than me.

I often go into the store thinking i should get one thign and often leave with something else, meaning something better, or a nicer version of my vision. It only takes a minute after discussing what i want when the store attendant has already made three or four suggestions to me. One usually topping the previous and leaving me with a hard decision of choosing or buying more than one.

This same store also has a website where I can purchase all of the same products. every time i go on there I don’t trust myself to get the best thing for the occasion. Because I have so much success walking into the store I don’t enjoy shopping online. I don’t trust myself to choose the best font, sayings, colors etc. The online feature offers a lot of convenience, but not the feedback that i have grown dependent on and love so much. I am sure i will stick with the person to person approach for now.

Networking at Home

Whenever I hear someone use the word networking I usually first think of cocktails. I think of a social scene that will give a little boost to people’s careers. Isn’t it funny how different words will mean different things, but kind of mean the same thing? In this technology age a common usage of the word networking has to do with linking together multiple computers. Actually, it is probably more often used in that way than the former meaning. I really showed my age with that one. A home network is much more common these days than not. “Until recently, home networks were primarily the realm of technophiles — most families either didn’t need or couldn’t afford more than one computer. But now, in addition to using computers for email, people use them for schoolwork, shopping, instant messaging, downloading music and videos and playing games. For many families, just one computer is no longer enough to go around. In a household with multiple computers, a home network often becomes a necessity rather than a technical toy.” (http://computer.howstuffworks.com/home-network.htm)

I have installed a wireless network in my home. The process was pain free. I got everything up and running and working great. There were just a couple obstacles to overcome and the biggest was learning about the things necessary to run a wireless network. I had to learn the best router for the job and which one was the best price. But even that is not the real difficulty. (http://compnetworking.about.com/) The difficulty comes when the signal can not be found and I have no idea where to begin to catch the invisible signal in order to do homework, for my girls to feed their webkinz, etc.

I decide to go the wireless route because we only have one laptop in the house and we are constantly moving it from room to room. I chose wireless out of convenience. Unfortunately the convenience is sometimes sabotaged by the elusive wireless signal. I seem to get my neighbors signal a lot easier than my own. the funniest part about all of this is that I am considered to computer-fixer in my house. Whenever someone gets on the computer and there is no signal the first thing said (or screamed) is…MOM the Internet is not working!

Even though the network is sometimes hard to locate wireless has really improved the felxibility and convenience of using the computer throughout the house.

Open Source Software

This is something I have never heard of before. The fact that there is an entire community of people who are creating Open Source Software is almost unbelievable to me. It was so unbelievable that once I saw this topic was an option for this assignment the first thing I had to do was find the actual definition. I guess I didn’t really find the definition but I did find a list of criteria the software must meet in order to be classified as Open Source Software. A couple of the criteria are that the license must not restrict redistribution and the software can be redistributed with modifications. It is so refreshing to see a community of people share their wealth of knowledge in order to promote progression and reap the rewards of seeing rapid growth within their industry and not only look forward to the monetary gains. Yeah for them! 

A huge benefit of Open Source Software is the availability of different types of software at a reasonable fee, if any. Open Source Software offers alternatives to commercial software. I have often been frustrated at the fact that there are very limited sources of specific software, and because of that the prices are outrageous. Also, even though it may seem rudimentary, I always feel like here is a CD with perfectly good software on it and instead of being able to loan it to my friend she has to go out and buy it while I have it sitting here collecting dust. It surely doesn’t fit with the whole “green” movement does it? I love the idea of being able to share or recycle software.

The biggest drawback of the Open Source Software is that it is not widely known. Maybe people who run in the “software circles” have heard of it before, but those of us that only know about the software you buy with your new PC Open Source Software does not exist. That stinks! I hope to find out more and more about this software and share the knowledge. Sharing the knowledge…exactly what Open Source Software is all about.

http://www.osalt.com/

http://www.opensource.org/docs/definition.php

Making A Difference

I want to make a huge difference in this world. I want my children and grandchildren to make an even bigger difference in this world. I make little differences a lot hoping to one day figure out how I am going to make a HUGE difference. Through my example I plan to pass on this outlook and objective to my family and maybe even you.