Month: January 2016

Why Are Printed Circuit Boards Green?

Why Are Printed Circuit Boards Green?

Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) are everywhere. In your computer, DVD player, Mobile Phone, Car Stereo, etc. Anything electrical these days is guaranteed to have a PCB within it.

If you have ever looked at one, they seem to resemble a miniature city. The analogy (of a miniature city) is not too far off the mark. The tiny buildings are places where electrical signals need to go to and the roadways are the means they use to do it. PCBs have played an active role in the process of eliminating wires and miniaturization. In fact, you may be surprised to know that they have been around for over one hundred years.

The underlay of a PCB is formed using a very thin layer of Copper and usually, several layers can exist in any given PCB. Sometimes Nickel is used instead of Copper but the idea is to have a layer that will allow electricity to be conducted. The top layer or the overlay needs to be made of a non-conducting material. For this, the popular choice has been Green Epoxy Resin. Since it is very effective and most importantly inexpensive, almost all PCBs you encounter will look green. The cost factor is very significant when you consider the millions of PCBs that are manufactured in the world today. Ultimately, someone will purchase them, and using the most cost-effective materials in production makes sense.

If you are interested, there are many different do-it-yourself kits that are available, where you can play around and create your own PCBs which will perform a simple function.

If you are looking for circuit breakers, we recommend turning to

Used Computers Are a Good Buy

Used Computers Are a Good Buy

Computers and cars are prime examples of quick depreciation. The moment you purchase either of these products and leave the showroom, they have depreciated considerably. This has nothing to do with being cheated but all to do with the nature of the product. Once owned, the value is drastically reduced.

Computers, in particular, tend to lose their value very quickly over time. This can hurt your finances quite a bit, especially if you had decided to purchase the top-end configuration that was available at that time. Computers such as these cost a lot more because they feature hardware that is not yet available en masse in the market. Therefore, you end up paying a premium. This is justified if you are a power user who is constantly at the computer using up every little bit of performance it has to offer. However, if you do not fit into that category and just want to use your computer on and off for email, surfing, playing a game or two, etc then a top-end purchase is a bad idea because you are wasting your money.

A better alternative is to purchase a used computer. Using the theory of depreciation mentioned above, it is very likely to be able to purchase a computer with a decent configuration for a very low price. For example, a Desktop computer with a P4 processor can go for as cheaply as $90. At that rate, you can get one, use it as you wish, and not bother about taking care of it as if it does go bust at some point, you can easily replace it with another. This type of purchase saves you a lot of money and makes a lot of sense with the recession affecting the economy.

How to Connect Your iPod Touch to Bluetooth Speakers

How to Connect Your iPod Touch to Bluetooth Speakers

Finally, the iPod Touch can connect to Bluetooth speakers. Originally, the iPod touch did not support Bluetooth out-of-the-box, but now you have to perform a simple software upgrade and ‘voila’, the iPod has Bluetooth support. Yes, this means that you had the technology to do Bluetooth based operations but had to wait until Apple kindly consented to allowing you to do so.

However, there is no point in griping about it now that you can finally connect to other devices via Bluetooth. Before you run off to hook up your Bluetooth speakers to your iPod, there are a few things to bear in mind.

Software version & iPod – First, check your serial number against the Apple website to determine which type of iPod you possess. You will need a Second Generation or newer iPod to proceed. Once you have confirmed that, check your software version number. To do this, simply select Settings-> General-> Version number. This will inform you as to which version of the OS you possess. If you do not have version 3.0, it strongly recommended that you upgrade to the latest OS available. This might involve a small sum (possibly about $5) but it will be worth it.

Speaker instructions – Do not throw away the box and instructions that came with the Bluetooth speakers. They contain important information that relates their connectivity. More often than not, Bluetooth devices have their own peculiar way of being discoverable and more importantly, have their own unique PIN number. You will need to follow the instructions to make the speakers discoverable to you iPod and hold on to the PIN number so that you can enter it when asked to do so. To search for your speakers, simply select Settings-> General-> Bluetooth and turn your Bluetooth on. Once turned on, you will see your speakers as one of the discovered devices.

Keep these tips in mind and you will find it easy to enjoy music off your wireless speakers, using the iPod.

Three Ways to Type Faster

Three Ways to Type Faster

As more and more people opt for work-at-home jobs, many are finding that the jobs involve a lot of typing. If you are one of those who find yourself in this position, it is necessary to upgrade your typing skills so that you save a lot of time. Let’s face it; single finger pecking is not going to get us anywhere, is it? So here’s three ways to improve your typing skills:

Position – Your fingers have predefined roles in where they should rest and where they should reach. It is imperative that you learn them as those positions form the initial steps in learning to type. Look online for a free typing tutorial which will help you learn these positions.

Practice, practice, practice – This point cannot be emphasized enough. No matter what you learn you must always practice it to be good at it let alone be perfect. Typing is a skill that requires a lot of practice to improve your understanding of the layout of the letters on your keyboard as well as to improve your speed. In your search for an online tutorial, you will come across many typing tutorial games. Go ahead and play them, you will find a fun way of improving your typing skills.

Do not peek – It is probably the hardest thing to do when you start off, but try your hardest not to look at the keyboard when you are typing. At first, you will make many mistakes and might even get frustrated. But if you keep at it you will find that your fingers automatically move to the right locations without you even thinking about it. To motivate yourself, drape a hand towel over your hands and go through your practice sessions.

Typing is like riding a bicycle, it takes time to learn but once you get it you can only get better at it. So practice, practice and practice away!

LCD Price Fixing Admission Leads to Nokia Lawsuit

LCD Price Fixing Admission Leads to Nokia Lawsuit

On the heels of a Department of Justice investigation into LCD manufacturers comes a lawsuit that will hurt them even further. Nokia has launched a case aimed at making the LCD manufacturers pay after they admitted to price fixing efforts.

Nokia has alleged federal violations as well as antitrust violations and is looking at trebled damages for the federal violations. The case seems to carry a lot weight as the LCD manufacturers have been documented to having agreed on production allocations and market shares between each other at regular meetings over the past decade. The companies involved are not small fry either, the big boys of production like Samsung, Hitachi, Epson, LG, Sharp and Toshiba are names implicated by the DOJ investigation.

Nokia is undoubtedly looking to gain some financial buffering from this payout when it happens, as it most undoubtedly will, to prop up their tottering bottom lines. But who can really blame them? The inflated prices pushed on Nokia by the manufacturers would have hurt them anyway during the decade long period and this is merely payback. The problem for the LCD manufacturers is that they have already admitted to their guilt and this has the effect of dropping a pint of blood in shark infested waters. Nokia is actually the second company to files lawsuits (the first was AT&T), and that too in the U.S. and U.K., depending on the outcome, the other “sharks” will seek blood.

The only thing certain about the outcome of this lawsuit is that the LCD manufacturing cartel is about to take the biggest hit in their collective manufacturing history.

The Pros and Cons of Laptop versus Desktop Computers

The Pros and Cons of Laptop versus Desktop Computers

When choosing a PC the eternally confusing question is – Laptop or Desktop? This can keep you wondering for a long time, at which point prices tend to change and you have another dilemma on your hands.

In reality the question should be – What is the purpose of this computer? If the answer or answers are email, chat, social networking or something similar, then it does not really matter what you get. Then the issue just boils down to the space you have to place the PC, Cost and aesthetics. But if you come with more specific answers like taking notes in college, drawing architectural diagrams, working while you travel, graphic design, etc then your choices are more clear cut.

A desktop PC is bulky, but it offers more in terms of power, hardware expansion and much bigger displays. People involved in any type of design or graphical work and even gamers should only consider this type of PC. For those who are familiar in tinkering with the innards of a desktop, customizing and upgrading it is a piece of cake. It is also less likely to suffer from overheating problems and problems stemming from vibration, etc.

Laptops have the ultimate advantage over a desktop – Mobility. It goes, where you go. This fact alone makes it the only choice for busy executives, students, researchers, etc. Laptops are portable and get smaller everyday; this coupled with the mobility and the aesthetics is a powerful package. However, a limited screen size, heating and fragility are problems when using a laptop.

In the end there is no clear winner and quite rightly so. The competition really is between the manufacturers and not between the differing architectures of the Laptop and Desktop. They are two forms of the same technology designed to suit different purposes. Therefore, when you do decide, make the decision with the purpose in mind and you will not regret it later.

Backing Up Your Files

Backing Up Your Files

Article written by FrgNews

We tend to realize the importance of backing up our files only after a hard disk crashes. By this time of course it is too late and the recovery of those files can be a very expensive proposition.

Creating a backup is basically the act of creating a copy of the file on another medium. This can be another hard disk on the same computer or onto a CD or DVD depending on the size of the backup. Never create a backup on the same hard disk you are backing up from, because this defeats the whole reason for the backup. Once you do take a back up, if it is portable, store in a safe location.

In the case of businesses, backups become very important. At the most basic level, financial records must be backed up. Usually companies tend to do three different backups – Daily, Weekly and Monthly. The daily backup stores only the files that have been updated from the previous day, and the weekly back up stores files that been updated compared to the previous week. The monthly back up, however, takes a back up of the all the data files regardless of whether they were updated or not.

This also differs to the others in that it is stored offsite in a secure location unlike the other two which remain onsite in a secure location.
With the amount of Virus, Trojan and Worm attacks that are prevalent today, performing a backup becomes all the more important for everyone who uses a computer.

Hard Disk Maintenance – Correct Methods to Maintain a Hard Disk

Hard Disk Maintenance – Correct Methods to Maintain a Hard Disk

Article written by Nyc Z

Although you may not realize it, your computer’s hard disk is a very important part of your computer. This is the component that stores all your data and is the only thing that will restore your data should you decide to upgrade to a newer computer. As a result the hard disk must be protected in certain ways so as to not lose any data.

Never ever physically shut down power when the hard disk light is on or blinking. This means that the hard disk is working and transferring data. Any power loss at this point not only results in data loss but also in physical damage to the platters within the hard disk. Please note that shutting down in this instance refers to a loss in power and not the shut down process offered by the operating system which is the proper way to power down your computer.

Ensure that the environment you work in is as dust free as possible. Hard disks are capable of absorbing minute granules of dust which in turn cause physical damage within the hard disk. You must also keep your computer free of any excessive vibration or physical movement when the computer is in use. This will also lead to the hard disk developing problems.

You should regularly perform disk defragmentation if you have frequent creation and deletion of files. The defragmentation process will clear the hard disk of fragmented files and to put it bluntly “put all the files in a neat order”. This enables faster seek times in a hard disk which will result in faster data retrieval for you.

If you follow the above guidelines you should be able to keep your hard disk running in good health for a long time to come.