Computer Fun Facts

Computer Fun Facts

Here are some interesting facts to know about computers and their history:

1. ENIAC, the first computer, weighed more than 27 tons and took up 1800 square feet.

2. “Typewriter” is the longest word you can write using the letters on only one row of your keyboard.

3. In 1964, Douglas Engelbart invented the very first computer mouse. It was made of wood.

4. More than 5000 computer viruses are released every month.

5. HP, Microsoft, and Apple all started in a garage.

6. In 1979, the first ever hard disk drive was made. It could hold only 5MB of data.

7. In 1980, the first 1GB hard disk drive was announced. It weighed about 550 pounds and cost $40,000.

8. The original name of Windows was Interface Manager.

9. Genesis Device demonstration video in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan was the the first entirely computer generated movie sequence in the history of cinema. That studio is now known as Pixar, the company behind Finding Nemo and Inside Out.

10. Founder of Microsoft, Bill Gates, was a college dropout.

11. ‘Email’ is older than the World Wide Web.

12. The group of 12 engineers who designed the IBM PC were called the ‘Dirty Dozen’.

13. In 2011, one out of every eight married couples had met online.

14. The quintessential command ‘Ctrl+Alt+Del” was written by David Bradley.

15. China is the country with the most number of Internet users.

16. In 1993, Mosaic, the first popular web browser was released.

17. “Stewardresses” is the longest word that can be typed with only the left hand.

18. Lenovo means “new legend”.

19. In the 1950s, computers were called “Electronic Brains”.

20. You can type faster using a Dvorak keyboard compared to using a Qwerty keyboard.

Things You Should Never Do On The Internet

Things You Should Never Do On The Internet

The Internet has been part of our daily lives for several years now and it is no secret that people do and post nearly everything on the Internet. Here’s a list of things you should never do on the Internet for your own good and safety.

  1. Post sensitive/private/inappropriate photos 
  • We know you love to post your travel photos. However, this can be a go signal for burglars. Travel photos = You’re not home.
  • Beware of posting pictures of your baby online! A woman from Utah posted family photos of her children on Instagram, only to find them on a child pornography site. Yikes!
  1. Download grabby apps 
    • Grabby apps are applications that grab information from you. Here are the statistics:
      • 82% of apps read device identification
      • 64% of apps know your sim carrier
      • 59% of apps know your last location
      • 55% of apps continuously track your location
      • 26% of apps run other apps that you use
      • 26% of apps know your sim card number
      • 36% of apps know your account number for your account information
    • Make sure you know what your apps are reading. Don’t download apps that gain access to too much information.
  2. Click on email message links 
    • Instead of clicking on links, copy and paste the text into a browser even if you trust the sender. You never know when it might be a virus!
  3. Share vices 
    • You never know what the long-term consequences of showing your vices on the Internet may be.
  4. Take quizzes (http://edudemic.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/quiz.jpg)
    • By revealing information about yourself and your personal preferences, you may be feeding marketers and data companies information about yourself. If you really want to take a quiz, verify who made it first.
  5. Use free Wi-Fi 
    • If you use free Wi-Fi to do your banking or to buy something online, you might be putting yourself at risk for being scammed.
    • Don’t ignore the warning that others might be able to see what you’re doing.
    • Use your phone as a mobile hotspot for sensitive transactions instead of using free Wi-Fi.
    • Public Wi-Fi’s are notoriously unsafe. Think about it: If you can access this Wi-Fi easily, what more can a trained hacker do?
  6. Cyberbully 
    • Not only is it unethical, cyberbullying is also one of the main causes of suicide.
  7. Put email address in a comment 
    • Spammers send web crawlers to harvest exposed e-mail addresses and fill your inbox with spam.
  8. Respond to spam 
    • All this does is confirm that your email address exists and is actively being used.
  9. Share your password. 
    • For obvious reasons.

When it comes to Internet Dos and Don’ts, remember to trust your gut. If the website or email looks sketchy, ditch it and scan for malware.

Happy surfing!

How To Clean Your Keyboard

How To Clean Your Keyboard

How To Clean Your Keyboard

Has your keyboard been acting weird? Are some keys missing? Do some keys refuse to work? Just like your other computer parts, your keyboard needs cleaning as well! Your keyboard can suffer from the accumulation of dirt and oils from your hands. Your keyboard can also get dirty if you use your computer in a dusty place or if you eat and drink around your computer. No idea how to clean your mouse? Don’t worry! After you’re done with this article, you’ll be cleaning your keyboard like a pro.

First, shut down your computer and detach the keyboard connector before proceeding with the cleaning.

  • Do not remove or connect a keyboard while the computer is running because it may damage the machine if you’re using a non-USB based keyboard.
  • Detaching the keyboard while the computer is running is safe when the keyboard is connected to the computer via USB.

Turn the keyboard upside down and use a can of compressed air to blow out any foreign matter.

  • Do this in a place where falling debris can be cleaned up easily.
  • Turn the keyboard upside down and tap on it a few times to let the dirt fall out

Clean the sides of the keys with a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol. 

For a more thorough cleaning, remove all of the keys.

What to do if you accidentally spilled liquid on your keyboard

  • Immediately disconnect keyboard or turn off computer
  • Turn the keyboard upside down and shake
  • Dry as much as possible with a cloth while the keyboard is still turned upside down
  • Leave it upside down for as long as possible (at least overnight)
  • If possible, cover the bottom of a large enough container with rice. Put in the upside down keyboard and cover it with as much rice as possible.
    • Rice is extremely absorbent and can draw in virtually any moisture if there’s enough rice an no new moisture is added.

Some tips: 

  • Consider leaving the space bar in place. It is the hardest to get back and the easiest to break.
  • When cleaning laptop keys, isopropyl alcohol and q-tips or compressed air is enough since it is not usually necessary to remove the keys.
    • Keys on the laptop can be difficult to replace, especially keys like the space bar and the “Enter” key, which have separate support under them that needs to be installed along with the key.
    • Removing laptop keys may damage them and they make break or become impossible to replace.

Common Causes Of Slow Internet Connection That Might Surprise You

Common Causes Of Slow Internet Connection That Might Surprise You

 

Slow internet connection? Here are some of the things commonly found in a household that might be interfering with your Wi-Fi connection. Surprise, surprise!

Wireless Speakers and Console Controllers

They seem totally harmless but these devices might actually interfere with your Wi-Fi! According to studies form the Farpoint Group, any device can operate in the unlicensed band used by Wi-Fi. Cordless phones shouldn’t interfere with your Wi-Fi, though!

Microwaves

Research from the Farpoint Group suggests that data throughput can fall by 64% within 25ft of a microwave. However, unlike video senders, microwave interference should only occur when you’re actually using them. Better wait for that movie to download before you cook the popcorn!

Analogue Video Senders

Analogue Video Senders top the list when it comes to devices that interfere with your Wi-Fi. Analogue video senders, such as baby monitors and wireless security cameras, have a different spectrum profile to Wi-Fi that it comes to the point where they eliminate your Wi-Fi connection. No wonder your SSID keeps disappearing every now and then! Since these devices’ signal is always on even when no video is being sent, they are often hard to diagnose as a source of interference.

Bluetooth

New devices have already addressed this problem by jumping to different frequencies but, according to ABI Research analyst Michael Morgan, older gadgets can still be a bit problematic.

Christmas Lights

Ever wonder why your internet connection starts acting weird during the holiday season? According to TalkTalk, Christmas lights as well as other household lights can reduce your Wi-Fi’s performance up to 25%. Worse comes to worst when your Christmas lights are blinking. Apparently, fluorescent lighting can also degrade Wi-Fi signal but they have to be very close to notice an interference.

Building Materials

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, guess what? Your house itself could be blocking Wi-Fi! The worst culprit is chicken wire which is used to help plaster stick to the walls better. These are especially common in Victorian or Edwardian era homes. Modern homes constructed with lots of plaster board also use signal-bouncing foil coating in kitchens and bathrooms. Actually, any metal in walls can cause signal to degrade.

Power Cables

We already know that anything with metal can interfere with your Wi-Fi signal. However, cables add electricity to the mix and, in theory, electromagnetic radiation create radio frequency noise that interferes even more. Good thing the effect is likely to be unnoticeable.

Mirrors

Unfortunately, your full-length mirrors might be hurting your Wi-Fi signal as well. Large mirrors tend to reflect the Wi-Fi signal back.

Old Televisions

New gadgets aren’t the only culprits for your Wi-Fi’s decrease in performance. An ancient CRT television once knocked out wireless signal of a whole neighborhood. The ISP was forced to buy a new TV for the owner of the old TV.

Fish Tanks

You can still keep your fish but make sure the aquarium is nowhere near the gadgets that are connected to your Wi-Fi.

What Do I Do If My Internet Connections Is Slow?

70% of the time we go out to bring our services to our customer’s houses, their problem has to do with slow internet. But what a lot of people don’t realize is that computer users can actually do a lot of different things to make their internet connection faster. Sometimes, your slow internet connection isn’t even the Internet Service Provider’s fault but, instead, of your computer’s.

Here are some of the things you can try to speedup your connection at home:

  • Disable or delay Windows updates.

    Downloads running in the background can make your Internet connection a lot slower.

  • End tasks and programs

    that are running in the background.

  • Ask your Internet Service Provider (ISP) for a line test

    that will verify if you have a bad connection. They can sometimes tweak settings at their end.

  • Try plugging your PC or laptop directly to the modem.

    This will eliminate any wireless issues that you may have in your house.

  • For ADSL connections,

    make sure that every phone outlet in which you have a phone plugged in also has an ADSL splitter. This helps separate the frequencies that otherwise might be affecting your connection.

  • Observe how fast or slow your Internet connection is at different times of the day.

    For example, is your connection slower at 3pm when most kids are checking their Facebook accounts?

  • See if you are having Wi-Fi issues within the house.

    Click *insert link here* for a list of household items that actually interfere with your Wi-Fi connection.

  • Find out how far you are from the exchange.

    The further you are, the higher the chance that your Internet connection is going to be slow.

  • When you say your Internet connection is slow, what are you comparing it to? Are you comparing it to its previous speed or to someone else’s speed? Is it the speed of their home computer or their business computer? This helps identify if your Internet connection really is slow or if it’s just being compared to a faster connection.

If you have already hired a computer technician, you can ask them to communicate and coordinate with the technicians from your Internet Service Provider. Communication between two computer technicians can usually escalate the solution for the issue more quickly since technicians are well-trained and experienced to deal with stuff like this. They will be able to verify if the technician has eliminated the reasons for the slow connection.

According to this article, the average Internet speed in Australia is 4.7Mbps. This should serve as a basis to whether or not your Internet connection really is slow.

Most NBN packages have Internet speeds that can go up to 25Mbps, 50Mbps, and even 100Mbps. You can see from this that using fiber optics massively increases your computer speed.

How To Clean Your Mouse

Has your computer mouse been acting weird? Has it been erratic or unresponsive? Your mouse might need cleaning! Your mouse can suffer from the accumulation of dirt and oils from your hands and the surface under your mouse. No idea how to clean your mouse? Don’t worry! After you’re done with this article, you’ll be ready to clean your mouse like a pro.

There are two main types of mice: mechanical and optical. Both types are basically cleaned the same way, although the mechanical mouse requires a bit more work.

Note: Unplug your mouse or turn off your computer before you clean the mouse.

 

Mechanical Mice

Also known as ball mice, these types of mice are especially susceptible to dust and particles that accumulate inside the mouse, which can make it difficult to move properly. Here’s how you can clean this type of mouse:

  • Remove the ball from the mouse. Most mice have a small turning cover around the ball. Just turn it a little and it comes off right away.
  • Use an alcohol wipe to rub down the mouse ball with. Hopefully the majority of its built up grime gets removed.
  • Pick the dirt off the rollers inside the mouse with a pair of tweezers.
  • Scrape any small bits of gunk out with a toothpick. Your rollers and wheels should be clean after this step.
  • Spray the inside of your mouse with canned air, blowing out any of the bits that might have fallen into the casing in the last few steps.
  • Wipe down the exterior of the mouse with an alcohol wipe. Aaaaand you’re done!

Optical Mice

This type of mouse requires no internal cleaning because there aren’t any rotating parts. However they can get sticky over time as dust collects near its light emitter, which may cause erratic cursor movement or prevent the mouse from functioning properly. So how do you clean an optical mouse?

  • Check the feet of the mouse for any sticky residue and remove it with your fingernail. Be sure to wash your hands!
  • Place a small amount of alcohol at the end of a q-tip and clean out the optical port. Wipe down the exterior of the mouse with an alcohol wipe.
  • That’s it!

The Downside Of Using Portable Devices

The Downside Of Using Portable Devices

Portable devices such as jump drives, personal audio players, and tablets give users convenient access to business as well as personal data on the go. As the use of such devices increase, so do the associated risks. But what exactly are the associated risks?

Here are some of the risks of using portable devices:

  • Increase the risk of data loss, which happens when device is lost.
  • Increase data exposure, which happens when sensitive data is exposed to the public or a third party without consent.
  • Increased exposure to network-based attacks to and from any system the device is connected to, both directly and via networks over the Internet.

TechAdvisory.org reports that 25% of malware, also known as malicious software, is spread today through USB devices. These devices plug into the USB port of your PC and may contain malware that you copy unknowingly or that gets launched automatically by the Autorun or Autoplay feature of your computer or laptop. Once the malware infects your computer to steal or corrupt all your data, it might spread to other computers in your home or within your organizational network. Portable devices can also give malicious insiders the opportunity to steal data easily and inconspicuously since these devices are easy to hide and their use is hard to track.

Bluetooth and Wi-Fi can also pose the most risk to your devices. When Bluetooth is on, the device becomes discoverable to your headset but it also becomes discoverable to malicious attackers seeking to exploit the connection. Attackers can also target home and public Wi-Fi networks.

Another potential risk when it comes to storage devices and smart devices comes from their small size and portability. You can accidentally leave them at a café and never see them nor the data stored on them ever again. If your device happens to contain sensitive or proprietary organizational data, your company’s reputation and well-being — and yours — could be in serious jeopardy.

So what can you do to minimize the risks?

  • The most obvious thing you can do is to install an antivirus software that will scan any device that connects to your computer via a peripheral port, such as USB.
  • Never connect a found jump drive or media device to your computer. Give any unknown storage device to the security or IT personnel where you found it.
  • Keep your personal and business data separate.
  • Secure all sensitive information stored on jump drives, CDs, and DVDs using strong encryption.
  • Set up a firewall and install antivirus as well as antispyware software on your computer.
  • Ensure all software on your PC stays up to date with current patches. To make things easier, enable automatic updates so you don’t have to bother checking for updates.
  • When transferring sensitive data from a USB drive, be sure to delete it using a secure delete utility once you’re done.
  • Consider using jump drives that have an onboard anti-virus capability which automatically scans both the drive and any computer you plug them into.

Here are some good practices to keep your smart devices secure:

  • Protect the device using a strong password or PIN and change it regularly.
  • Before downloading applications, find out what access they want to have on your device. Most applications provide that information. Be wary of downloading applications that don’t.
  • Download applications, games, and music from trusted sources only.
  • Run anti-malware software on the device and take the appropriate action when it identifies something suspicious.
  • Set up a local firewall on the device to filter inbound and outbound traffic and block malicious software.
  • Configure your device settings in such a way that it will automatically lock itself when you’re not using it.
  • Do not jailbreak the device. Jailbreaking the device removes the limitations imposed on a device by its manufacturer, often through the installation of custom operating-system components or other third-party software. This makes the device more vulnerable because it removes safeguards against malware.
  • Activate the GPS functionality so you can track the location of the device if you happen to misplace or lose it.
  • Disable Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and other services when you’re not using them.
  • When using Wi-Fi, be sure to encrypt your home network, use a VPN connection, or otherwise ensure that traffic is encrypted when you’re in a semi-trusted environment
  • When using Bluetooth, set it to non-discoverable mode to make the device invisible to unauthenticated devices.
  • Secure all the data stored on tablets using AES 128/256-bit encryption.
  • Enable a remote-wiping feature to erase all data on the device if you misplace it or if someone enters too many incorrect passwords.

List Of Common Mouse Problems

List Of Common Mouse Problems

Here’s a list of the most common mouse problems along with their causes and what you can do about them:

1. Mouse pointer does not move smoothly.

Clean Your Mouse

Main cause: Accumulation of dust at the bottom of the mouse surface.

What you can do: Clean the dust at the bottom of the mouse surface. Clean or change your mousepad.

2. Mouse pointer freezes.

hanging-outlook-process

Main cause: High CPU usage or hanging of some application.

What you can do: Wait a few seconds and see if the mouse starts to respond. If it doesn’t respond after a minute or so, try launching the task manager from your keyboard (Ctrl + Shift + Esc for Windows, Command + Option + Escape for Mac). If that still doesn’t work, it’s time to restart your computer.

3. Mouse doesn’t work at all.

List Of Common Mouse Problems

Main cause: Loose connections or the mouse connector is connected to the wrong port.

What you can do: Check the physical connection to make sure that the mouse is properly connected to its rightful port. Still not working? Time to a buy a new mouse, then.

4. Mouse pointer is too fast or too slow.

windowsmousesettings

Main cause: Settings configuration.

What you can do: Open your Control Panel. Go to Mouse -> Pointing Devices -> Set mouse speed.

5. Problem with double click.

mouse doublie click

Main cause: Settings configuration.

What you can do: Open your Control Panel. Go to Mouse -> Pointing Devices -> Set mouse double click speed. Still not working? Buy a new mouse.

We hope this article helped you! Having trouble with your computer? Give us a call and we will be right at your service! Our highly experienced professional technician would love to help you fix any computer problem! 

CALL US 3144 7171

or Email Us at support@zoorepairs.com.au

How To Boost Your Computer’s Performance

How To Boost Your Computer’s Speed

1. Reduce items that run on startup.

msconfig-startup-tab

You can customize the programs that run on startup to minimize the number of programs that take up your disk space.

Click on the Windows button -> Enter “run” -> Enter “msconfig” -> Click on “Startup” tab

2. Remove programs you no longer use.

Uninstall_Software_Using_Control_Panel

You should regularly review which programs you no longer need and remove them. Use the Uninstaller tool from your Control Panel to uninstall programs you don’t use.

3. Clean your drive.

Windows Cleanup

Type “cleanmgr.exe” into the Run menu to access Disk Cleanup. Using The Disk Cleanup frees up space by deleting useless files like temporary files created by old programs.

4. Stop using Internet Explorer if you’re still using it.

Google Chrome

Use Google Chrome instead. It runs faster and has fewer bugs.

5. Clean your browser regularly.

Chrome Cleanup

Your browser also takes up a lot of your space. Go to the settings and clear your browser history, cache, and cookies regularly to free some space.

6. Regular maintenance is key.

kaspersky_total_security_28

Periodically conduct scans for viruses, spywares, and the registry errors. Regularly scan your system to get rid of any malware that may be slowing your computer down.

7. Cool your machine.

Cool Your Computer

Make sure your computer has adequate air-flow around it. Use a cooling fan for your computer. Overheating will not only slow down your computer, it can also damage your hardware.

8. Note down errors.

note errors

Errors happen with systems. Note themand search for solutions online.

 

Feel free to consult our computer technicians if your system is having multiple complex problems. No call out fees!

CALL US 3144 7171

Skills of an Effective Computer Technician

Skills of an Effective Computer Technician

An outstanding computer technician is someone who solves all the problems with professionalism and courtesy without introducing new stresses or worries.

To be an effective computer technician, one has to acquire a certain set of skills. Here are some of the skills and traits that our computer technicians at Zoo Computer Repairs are proud to have:

A good computer technician…

Never panics.

A good computer technician understands that it’s okay to not know everything but that doesn’t mean that he won’t be able to figure it out. Part of being a technician is being excited about discovering and solving new problems. That’s how you grow. A good computer technician doesn’t fear or stress over repairs.

Is professional.

A good computer technician shows up on time and lets his clients know if he will be running late. A good computer technician dresses nicely, takes a shower, doesn’t chew gum while talking, and doesn’t use foul language. A good technician treats every service call like a job interview. If you want the client’s business now and in the future, you should be as professional as possible at all times.

Isn’t afraid to call in for backup.

A good computer technician knows that it’s okay to search the Internet if he’s unsure of what to do. Clients only really want to see their problem fixed, whatever means necessary. While clients may be impressed by a technician’s recall ability of every computer problem ever encountered, they will be infinitely more impressed when the issue is fixed correctly.

Has tools ready before arriving.

A good computer technician can squeeze by with only a few tools. However, it is always a good idea to bring all the tools required into the client’s house. A technician should really only need to go back to his car for specific hardware replacements or upgrades.

Asks plenty of questions.

A good computer technician knows that it’s always a good idea to ask questions such as “When did the problem start? Was anything changed since the problem began? What are the symptoms or error messages you’re seeing? How do you get around the problem? Would you like to know how anything else on your computer can be upgraded or improved? Do you want your computer to do anything it currently cannot do?”

Answers any questions the clients may have and lets them watch the repair process if they want to.

A good computer technician always does a good job and is proud to show it to their clients. A good computer technician is a good multitasker as well.