All Posts by Nancy Perraeault

DVLA driving test cancellations

How To Deal With DVLA And Test Cancellations

There are many different reasons why you may want to cancel your driving test. Today we will show you how you too can go about this sometimes difficult situation and deal with it in the right way.

What Is DVLA? And How To Cancel A Driving Test?

How To Cancel A Driving TestFirst of all, we need to explain that DVLA is an acronym for Driver And Vehicle Licensing Agency which is a government agency used to issue driver’s licenses. If you are in the UK and need to acquire your driver’s license this is the agency that you will have to contact in order to make sure you can schedule an appointment. DVLA driving test cancellations are a standard procedure for those who cannot make their test in time, or need to reschedule for whatever reason.

However, it is also very difficult to get a test appointment anyhow, so dealing with it can be a bit frustrating. If you do not want to wait forever for your driving test and have to deal with cancellations it might be easier to let a simple program take care of it for you. There are tools that will help you find an appropriate appointment, and help you schedule the one which is the most suitable for you. Also, the tools and apps will help you by making multiple appointments in advance, which means if you do have to cancel you will not wait for a long period of time.

What Are Some Of The Reasons Why People Cancel?

Cancel A Driving TestThere are numerous reasons why some people would want to cancel their driving test. First of all, you may not feel fully prepared to take your driving test. Also, you may have some personal problems or issues and need to cancel. Whatever the reason is, you must also take in mind that other people have the precisely exact issues as you do. Other people will too cancel their appointments and this might also mean that some test appointments might get free.

Whatever the reason for cancellation is, if you plan your test taking in advance you should not have any problems. DVLA makes it easier for you than ever to pass your exam and you can use tons of tools and software to make it even easier on you. It is also important to mention that driving a car and obtaining a driving license is a huge deal and great advantage, so use every opportunity that you have to learn more about it and work more on yourself for the sake of yourself.

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Using Open Source Hardware – Advantages And Disadvantages

If you are thinking of using open source hardware, you might be a visionary, or just fed up with what standard computer companies have to offer. But where does one begin, how you can build a really quality computer with open source hardware and what are some advantages and disadvantages – we will be discussing in the text bellow.

Getting What You Want

It is difficult to get what you want when you are buying something which has been made in a factory. In case that you really want to get what you want, you usually have to make it yourself. This is what open source hardware is actually all about.

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It provides a customized service which is often necessary to some people. If you want to get a computer which will be performing in a precise way that you need it to perform, you will be able to get that with open source hardware.

Difficult To Make

Open-source-hardwareIf you have no experience whatsoever, it might be a challenge to use open source hardware. It will take longer, and you will also have to learn a bunch of new things in order to be able to walk out satisfied out of this situation. In case that you are merely beginning to dabble in this stuff, make sure you have plenty of resources, but mostly time and patience to make everything work.

Learning A New Skill

On a brighter side of things, you will also learn a new skill which many come in handy in the future and will definitely look awesome in your resume. This is a great way to develop some areas of your creativity that you did not think you had, and it will definitely help you grow as a person in a professional and creative way.

Finding Open Source Market

There might also be problems when it comes to finding the market for the open source hardware. There is a bunch of things which can be found online, but whether it will come in the same shape and form is definitely not always something you can rely on.

Instead, use experience and trial and error to find the best open source hardware which can be found out there.

 

Open Source And Hardware

Open Source And Hardware – How To Use Your Head Properly

One of the things which are often neglected in the modern world is the way you can do absolutely everything you want. If you think about it we have the opportunities today which our ancestors couldn’t have dreamed of. But, still not many people know how to use all of this in a correct way.

This is precisely why today we will talk about how you can use open source software and hardware in order to build your computer.

Will It Be Easy?

You see, building the computer is not easy. So, no, it will not be easy, but it will be worth it! The majority of people believe that you need to have a vast knowledge about computers and technology in general in order to be able to build your own computer.

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What they fail to realize is that while there are many things you should learn, there are also manyways in which you can improve your knowledge and do it successfully so that you are able to build whatever computer you need.

Getting What You Have Always Wanted

Another thing which is also very important when it comes using open source hardware is that are many ways for you to get exactly what you want of machine. If you’re looking for something specific, this is the way to get it. In addition to that, it also means that you will have to spend less money.

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Choosing to do all that on your own will actually save you money. Building a precise custom-made machine which will serve whatever purpose you have in mind is worth it. If you want to have something no one else has this is the right way for you to get it.

Bragging About It

Moreover people also neglect the fact that you will be doing all of this on your own, which is really something that you can immensely brag about. It will make you feel good to say that you are able to build your own computer, to fix your own computer, to do something productive in a world where everything is ready-made and handed to you on a plate – and that is really impressive and you should be proud of yourself. So if you are looking for a way to better yourself, better your computer, learn something new and expand your horizons you should definitely try open source hardware and make it useful.

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Open-source Hardware Facts That You Did Not Know

The world of technology is constantly growing and changing. So much so, that it is difficult for people to keep track with all the innovations and changes. But, you should not fear of falling behind as long as you have us to help you! Read these facts about open-source hardware and discover new things you did not know before.

OSH

Open-source hardware, often abbreviated as OSH allows you to get that kick out of making something on your own. Namely, this movement encourages open design and free and open-source software.

OSH

This means that you can make your own hardware designs and add software to it, in order to create a device which you need, with the precise specifications that you are looking for in a device.

Sharing Is Caring

It is practically impossible not to share an achievement with the OSH community, so the open-source hardware building techniques, schematics and codes are more often than not shared. IT will also allow you to use all the systems and circuits in a better way.

When Did It All Begin?

Well, the open source reaches back just a decade, since it began in 1997. However, it took a couple of years for the open source to become recognized by major companies, such as OpenCores, Adafruit nad RepRap. However, these years made sure that open-source is solidified and today we have free hardware revolution in every sense of the word!

Yeah, But What About Licenses?

Even though open-source projects use open-source licenses, they do not always go hand in hand with patent law. Most hardware licenses actually should rely on patent law and copyright law, but that is seldom the case. So far we have had the OSS license, but also GPL, LGPL and BSD license.

But you should not forget that your patent is your intellectual property – so, you should do your best to protect it.

Why Not Buy?

Patenting open-source hardware is a lot more fun than buying a product. Sometimes it is cheaper as well. It will allow you to get a custom-made product, designed for what you intend to do with it, there is absolutely no denying that it is the only way to guarantee quality of a product.

Tablet PC

What To Look Out For When Choosing A Tablet PC

Tablet devices are still not as cheap as we would like them to be, which is why we tend to spend a lot of time choosing the right one. Read on if you are curious about tablet PCs and if you would like to buy one soon.

1. The feel and grip of the device

This is the first thing we test out when we have to buy a new tablet PC. After all, it is a device that we will be using for a long time, which is why we need to feel comfortable while using it.

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You should try holding a tablet before buying it. Try to figure out whether the weight of the device feels OK. The reason why you shouldn’t trust reviews when it comes to the feel of the device is that we all have different-sized hands. Try the device before you buy it, and make sure that your fingers and wrists aren’t getting tired during use.

2. The size of the screen

You need to know whether the size of the screen is very important to you. A big screen size means that you wouldn’t be able to carry your tablet device as easy as you would be if the screen were small. On the other hand, you need to know whether a small screen will hinder your use of a tablet PC.

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Think about what you will be using the device for and about the fact that you have to carry it around, and you will know which screen size fits your needs.

3. The battery life

Ideally, you should go for a device that gives you the most battery life but you should also keep in mind that the battery contributes a lot to the size and weight of your device.

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Manufacturers sometimes make compromises – they lower the battery life to make a smaller device. If you notice a thin lightweight tablet with a low price, the chances are high that the battery life is short.

4. The processing power

The processing power contributes to the usability and the entertainment value of the device. The more processing power the device has, the better it will behave during usage. The less processing power, the higher the chances of the device not performing as you expect it to perform. If you want to avoid problems, you should go for a device with lots of processing power.

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5 Reasons Why Open Source Is Good For Business

Many businesses and government organizations are using open source software. Nowadays, it is obvious that the price is not the only advantage of open source. Wanna know why free and open source software holds advantages? Continue reading, and you will know.

1. Security

The fact that more people can see and test code is a testament to the superior security of open source software. As the “Linus’ Law” suggests: “Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow.” This means that the more people have access to the code, the more likely it is that flaws will be caught and fixed.

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Essentially, it is the opposite of the “security through obscurity” argument. Bugs in open source software usually get fixed in no time. On the other hand, Microsoft takes weeks, sometimes months, to patch vulnerabilities.

2. Customizability

When the code is open, businesses can tweak the software to suit their needs. If the code is open, nothing is stopping businesses from adding new functionalities if they think it’s necessary. On the other hand, you can’t do that with proprietary software.

3. Cost

opensourceThink about how much money you have to spend on proprietary software. Support charges, virus protection, upgrade expenses, etc. Proprietary software is a drain on your business in many ways, and you probably don’t even realize it. You can get better quality at a smaller price if you go for open source software.

4. Quality

Ask yourself whether a handful of developers can create better software than thousands of developers? The best thing about open source software is that users work on it, and the software is closest to what the users want it to be.

A recent study has shown that the primary reason why businesses choose open source software is technical superiority.

5. Freedom

Proprietary packages put customers at the mercy of the vendors. When you choose a proprietary software, you are at the mercy of prices, priorities, requirements, timetables, and more, and that limits what you can do with the software you are paying for.

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The free open source software lets you control the decisions and what you want to do with the software. The best part is that you always have a worldwide community of developers and users who are willing to help.

We are not saying that open source software is necessary for your business, but there are many benefits – it is up to you to decide what you want to use.

4 Useful Programs You Should Use

4 Useful Programs You Should Use

1. Open Office

Managing a business can be hard without the Office package, but if you don’t have enough money to purchase a license for MS Office, you can always download Open Office for free.

open-office
It has everything the MS Office has, and more. Whenever we install a fresh OS, the first program we install is the Open Office package – give it a try, you won’t regret it!

2. GIMP

Whenever people talk about image-editing software, the first program they mention is the Adobe Photoshop. Yes, Adobe Photoshop is useful, but the problem is that not everyone can afford it.

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If you need to edit photos, but can’t spend any money on software – you can use GIMP. Gimps is free, and it is very similar to Adobe Photoshop. You should give it a try if you’re looking for a powerful image-editing program.

3. 7ZIP

7-zip-logo-256x2567ZIP is a file manager which is used to compress and uncompress files. Whenever you download a file from the Internet, the chances are high that the file is compressed. If you want to access the file without any hiccups, you should use 7ZIP. 7ZIP is another one of those programs which always find a place on our hard drive, and it is completely free!

4. Malwarebytes Anti-malware

Everyone hates nasty files which wreak havoc on our PCs, but, fortunately, there is an answer. If you are interested in keeping your PC safe, and you should be, you can try out the Malwarebytes Anti-malware program. The free version is good, but you can always purchase the full version if you require better options than the free version provides.

The four programs that we mentioned are the ones we always install after reinstalling our OS. Which programs do you install first and why?

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How to Start Shell Scripting

You should think of POSIX (UNIX or Linux) system programs as building blocks which help you create bigger things. You can take a bunch of programs and put them together so that the data flows from one to another and the system takes care of the connections. The programs don’t know that they are connected – they are talking to the terminal.

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Shell scripting gives everyday users the ability to program and to automate certain tasks. Shell scripts are made with common, everyday commands. If you want to get started with shell scripting, you should first familiarize yourself with a Linux or UNIX shell. The more you learn about the shell, the better your scripts will be.

There are a few shells out there, but if you are new to shell scripting, you should use bash. Bash is a good shell with plenty of features, and it is a default shell on Linux.

If you want to get good at shell scripting, you should first familiarize yourself with your text editor. The good news is that your Linux distribution comes with the grandfather of Unix text editors – vi. Vi is infamous for its non-intuitive command structure, but most of the Linux distributions come with an enhanced version of vi called vim.

When you get good at using vi or vim, you can start writing your first bash shell script. If you want to create your first script, follow the instructions:
– Open the terminal
– Use the ‘cd’ command to navigate to where you want to create the script
– Write ‘touch hello.sh’ (touch command creates a new empty file)
– vi hello.sh (opens the newly-created file in vi text editor)

Now that the file is open in vi, write the following:

#!/bin/bash
# My first script
echo “Hello World!”

– Save the file, and make the script executable by writing ‘chmod 744 hello.sh’.
– Run the script by writing ‘./hello.sh’

You should see the output “Hello World!” on your screen. If you have taken a class of programming, the result shouldn’t surprise you, but if you haven’t – here’s the explanation:

#!/bin/bash – this is the shebang (it tells the OS which program to use to run the script), you shouldn’t concern yourself too much with it now.
# My first script – anything following a hash (#) is a comment
echo “Hello World!” – the ‘echo’ command displays a line of text (in this case – Hello World!)

This is just a tiny sample of what shell scripting can do. We hope that we have sparked your interest and that you will continue to explore the world of shell scripting. Try learning on your own, don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and you will be on your way to becoming a hacker. Good luck!

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3 Hacks To Make Your Google Chrome Work Better

We all know that Chrome is the most-used browser in the world, but that doesn’t mean that it is perfect. Google Chrome is updated many times throughout a year, but it still manages to come to our computers requiring further optimization.

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Read on and learn how you can make Google Chrome work better, and how to make its minor flaws less annoying.

1. Block annoying data requests

It is a good thing that Chrome asks for your permission before it allows a website to access your location, but it can get annoying. There is a way to make the browser automatically decline the request!

– Click the three vertical dots in the upper right-hand corner
– Click on ‘Settings’
– Click ‘Show Advanced Settings’ at the bottom
– Find the ‘Privacy’ section and click on the ‘Content Settings’ button
– Find the ‘Location’ and ‘Notifications’ options and select ‘Do not allow any site to show notifications’

2. Stop auto-play videos

Even tho Chrome doesn’t have an option that allows you to disable auto-playing videos; there is a workaround.

– Click the three vertical dots in the upper right-hand corner
– Click on ‘Settings’
– Click on ‘Show Advanced Settings’
– Find the ‘Privacy’ section and click on the ‘Content Settings’ button
– Find the ‘Flash’ portion of the options and select ‘Block sites from running flash’

This way, whenever there is a Flash element on a page, it won’t start playing unless you right-click on it.

3. Easy mute tabs

There is nothing more annoying than a page which blares noise out of nowhere. Yes, Chrome does show a volume indicator in the tabs that are playing audio, but we will show you how to enable the option to mute those tabs.

– Copy and paste the following text into the URL bar: chrome://flags/#enable-tab-audio-muting
– Press Enter and you will be in Chrome’s experimental options
– The ‘Tab audio muting UI control’ option will be highlighted – enable it
– Relaunch Chrome

Now you can click on the volume indicator icon to mute a noisy tab. There you have it, three simple hacks to make your Google Chrome experience much better. Which one do you think is the most useful? Which one will you be using? Let us know!

JavaScript

Gmail Will Start Blocking JavaScript Attachments

We have learned that starting Feb. 13; Google will forbid JavaScript attachment on the Gmail service. This move should stop one of the main methods the malware has been distributed during the past two years.

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Users who want to attach .JS files to emails in Gmail will no longer be able to do it. Even if a user compresses the file into an archive like .zip or .gz, the user won’t be able to attach it to emails in Gmail.

JavaScript files need to be shared

Yes, there will be rare cases when JavaScript files need to be shared, but that can be done using storage services like Google Drive.

The .JS file extension will be added soon to an existing list of banned file attachments that includes: .ADE, .ADP, .BAT, .CHM, .CMD, .COM, .CPL, .EXE, .HTA, .INS, .ISP, .JAR, .JSE, .LIB, .LNK, .MDE, .MSC, .MSP, .MST, .PIF, .SCR, .SCT, .SHB, .SYS, .VB, .VBE, .VBS, .VXD, .WSC, .WSF and .WSH.

Most of the mentioned file types have been abused by criminals for a long time, which is why they are on the list of banned file attachments.

JavaScript files are executed directly on Windows thanks to Windows Script Host (WSH), and that is why cyber criminals have been abusing it during the past two years. JavaScript files can be used as downloaders for other malware, but the biggest problem is that JavaScript can be used for the distribution of ransomware. There is even a ransomware program which was completely written in JavaScript.

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As you already know, the number one rule is that if you don’t recognize a file type and you are not sure what it does, you should not open it. If you are expecting files in formats to which you aren’t accustomed to, you should always check with the sender whether you have received what you are supposed to receive, but it would be better not to share such files via email.

We are glad to see that Google is working on security, and we are especially glad to see that they are doing something to combat the spread of ransomware by blocking JavaScript attachments. We have to wait and see the results of their new action against cyber crime.