Saturday, February 28, 2009

Internet Web Browsers

The issue of which internet browser is best often leads people to get a little feisty defending their favorite. There are several lesser known web browsers (Safari, Opera, Chromte, etc.) that perform nicely, but to keep things simple I'll talk about the two most popular - Firefox and Internet Explorer.

Due to Microsoft's command of the computer market, the majority of the people who own PCs think they are relegated to using it to search the internet. I was this way for the longest time. But during my time at college, many of my engineering cohorts turned me onto Mozilla Firefox - they claimed it was miles ahead of IE.

Every since switching, I have zero complaints and I've begun to understand why it was so popular, even if it is an 'underground' following.

First off, Firefox is completely open-source. For you non-tech junkies, this simply means that the source code that was written to create Firefox is made available to the general public. Why is this so important? Because it means that anybody with an inkling to improve or add-on to the existing code base can do so, and distribute their fine pieces of work on Mozilla's website. Because of this, you will find that Firefox has a ton of extra features (all user added) that make it much easier and more pleasant to use.

The second reason why open-source is great - again, the computer programmers who are interested in checking out the source code can find and report (or correct) many of the security vulnerabilities. Because of this, there is less of a chance of downloading a nasty computer virus that may affect your PC.

Meanwhile, IE was developed by Microsoft engineers, and outside of that small group of minds, their source code is kept private to the general public.

The power is in the numbers, people. Firefox allows any Joe Schmo to edit their code, but that is a good thing because it means much more brainpower goes into developing this program.

I know the ubiquitous option for web browsing is Internet Explorer, but I urge you guys to give Firefox a try. Peruse their add-ons and see if you like what they have to offer. If for nothing else, you will be better protected from the bad guys out there.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Beginners that Need Computer Help

So if you are a casual user of a computer, you probably run into problems often that tend to frustrate you until you eventually give up. Does this sound like you? Then you are in the right spot.

I'm a computer engineer by trade, but my focus for this site is the computer beginner. If you need computer help, I hope to provide logical and easy to follow solutions for the most common problems that people encounter.

Some topics and computer tips that I plan on writing about include: using the internet, internet browsers, software issues (mainly Microsoft office), interesting tips and tidbits that you might not have known, among other relevant topics.

I currently own a PC running Windows Vista, a laptop with Windows XP, and a MacBook with an Intel processor (capable of running both Leopard and XP simultaneously with a virtual machine). If you have any specific questions which you would like me to help with, feel free to leave me a comment and I'll do my best to tackle the issue.