Weekend Accelerator – March 30, 2014

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We hope you didn’t miss any of our posts this past week, but if you did, you can always come back to the Weekend Accelerator! Here, every week our team will make sure to compile everything we’ve shared, and throw a couple of other interesting articles to make your Sunday is more tech-filled!

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IT Basics Every Professional Should Know

 

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When it comes to the realm of IT, not everyone understands the intricacies of server virtualization, software development, or debugging. However, there is certain IT knowledge that everyone must know. From knowing what computers and websites are to understanding software and hardware, anyone who uses technology should have a basic grasp of this knowledge. Here are the top five pieces of IT knowledge that everyone should know.

Computers

The most basic aspect of IT is, of course, the computer. The computer is a programmable machine that can store data, receive input, and provide output that is useful to the user. The first computer was developed in the early 1940s, and it was the size of an entire room. Just about everyone uses a computer in his or her daily life, whether it’s to check email, shop online, type a paper, or use Facebook. Today, computers are more than just desktop units – they also encompass laptops, tablets, smartphones, and other mobile devices.

Hardware

One critical component of a computer is the hardware. This consists of both external devices and internal devices. External devices of a computer can include the monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers, printer, scanner, and more. Internal devices may include the motherboard, CD drive, processor, ram, network card, graphic card, and sound card. Your network also requires other hardware to connect to the internet, such as the router, modem, and wireless adapter. Finally, other external devices can include storage devices such as thumb drives and external hard drives.

Software

In contrast to hardware, software is the intangible element of your computer system. In general, software refers to any data that is stored digitally. There are three types of software: application, programming, and system. Application software is used for tasks, such as a word processor or video game. Programming software is used to write programs for your computer, and it can include text editors and debuggers. Finally, system software runs your computer systems and includes the operating system, utilities, device drivers, windowing systems, and servers.

Operating Systems

The operating system is an essential component of your computer network, and it is what creates the interface necessary for the user to communicate with the hardware. This platform also allows the user to install software and host applications. Common operating systems include Mac OS X, Windows 8, Linux, and Ubuntu.

Internet

Last but not least is the internet. Made up of thousands of networks that exist across the world, the internet allows users to access a range of services, from email to real-time video broadcasts. Information is relayed on the internet through websites, which are collections of web pages that contain text, images, video, and other content.

While these are just the basics of IT, IT Accel offers talented IT professionals with the experience necessary to succeed in a wide range of positions. Whether you are searching for a candidate to fill an open position or are an IT professional searching for a job, contact IT Accel today to learn more about our services.

Weekend Accelerator – March 23, 2014


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We hope you didn’t miss any of our posts this past week, but if you did, you can always come back to the Weekend Accelerator! Here, every week our team will make sure to compile everything we’ve shared, and throw a couple of other interesting articles to make your Sunday is more tech-filled!

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How to Search for the Top IT/Technology Schools

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Once you’ve decided to go back to school for a degree in Information and Technology, what’s next? Picking a graduate program can be a tedious process, whether entering a program directly after completing undergraduate education or several years later. Take care not to enter a program that will be a waste of time and money. The point of going to grad school is to increase knowledge and your paycheck, not to diminish your bank account for a mediocre program.

Picking a Grad School

Choosing a graduate program is much different than selecting an undergrad college. When you were a senior in high school, you picked a college because it felt comfortable, friends were going there, the price tag was right – a variety of reasons. But you were most likely considering the school as a whole.

With graduate school, it’s important to look less at the school in its entirety and more at individual programs. When planning to enter an IT program, it won’t matter how highly the school is ranked in biology or liberal arts. You’re primary concern is the department you wish to enter. This is why graduate schools are ranked by program.

IT Program Advice

Here are the top ranked schools, according to U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of graduate programs in Information and Technology Management.

  1. Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA
  2. Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY
  3. University of Albany – SUNY in Albany, NY
  4. Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey – Newark in Newark, NJ
  5. Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, GA
  6. Indiana University – Bloomington in Bloomington, IN
  7. University of Nebraska – Omaha in Omaha, NE
  8. Harvard University in Cambridge, MA
  9. University of Texas – Austin in Austin, TX

Advice for Your Personal Program Search

The U.S. News & World Report bases its ranking decisions on a wide variety of criteria. There are a multitude of quality IT programs that did not make this list to be considered. Here is some advice for deciding on a program.

  • Poll role models. Ask admired people in the field where they went to school. See if they recommend their alma maters or if they would have gone somewhere else. Ask what programs the industry is talking about.

 

  • Compare admissions offices: Send a similar inquiry to multiple schools’ admissions offices and compare their responses. Consider yourself forewarned if they are slow to reply, give inadequate answers, or are rude. Admissions offices are the faces of their schools. It does not bode well if you are not treated with courtesy as a prospective student.

 

  • Chat up students and alums: Instead of imagining what it is like to be a student at a particular school, ask some directly. Find out what the students have to say about their professors. Get in contact with recent alumni to ask similar questions. The admissions office can provide alumni contacts upon request, and many graduates will be happy to share their experiences.

 

The IT field is full of exciting opportunities. For more information, contact IT Accel.

Weekend Accelerator – March 16, 2014

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We hope you didn’t miss any of our posts this past week, but if you did, you can always come back to the Weekend Accelerator! Here, every week our team will make sure to compile everything we’ve shared, and throw a couple of other interesting articles to make your Sunday is more tech-filled!

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Proper Interview Attire

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The first impression you give to a potential employer could be what determines whether or not you get the job, especially in the IT world. If you impress with your resume and cover letter, then it’s equally important to impress during the interview. Knowing how to dress for the interview is a critical component that many applicants fail to acknowledge. Under dressing for an interview can be disastrous, but overdressing can also have its consequences. By following these tips, you’ll be able to distinguish yourself from other candidates as one who is ready for the job.

Consider the Position You’re Applying For

The general rule of thumb is to dress one or two levels up from the position for which you’re applying. For example, if you were a mechanic applying for a position at a car repair shop, you wouldn’t go to the interview in dirty overalls. However, dressing in a tux would be overkill for the position as well. Similarly, you should consider the level of the position and dress a notch or two above what’s expected. This will show you are passionate about landing the job and would be a good fit for the company.

Make a Power Statement

According to Nicole Williams, a best-selling author and career expert at LinkedIn, the job interview is the perfect opportunity to show off your individualized style. While you still want to dress accordingly and make sure your clothes are business-professional and scuff free, why not make a statement about yourself before you even say a word? Remember, aside from qualifications and experience, employers in today’s world are looking for professionals who have personality and can add to the culture of the company.

Trust Your Instinct

Not every company is a suit and tie kind of business. Use your judgment when selecting your interview attire. When you apply for a position, chances are that you have some idea of the company culture and the type of employees it attracts. For instance, men might always want to wear a jacket for an interview, but a tie or collared shirt might not always be necessary. Remember, you want to impress without going overboard.

Pay Attention to the Details

If you’re wearing a well-tailored outfit, you’re sending the message to your interviewer that you’re detail oriented, says Frank Bernieri, PhD. Even collared shirts can look sloppy when they’re not tailored to complement your body type. Women might want to consider jewelry that shows off personality, though items like nose-rings and lip piercings might need to be reconsidered. While it’s important to show off personality, today’s job market is different from 1999, when new grads had more freedom to express that personality.

Try Sitting Down

Chances are you’ve only assembled your outfit in front of the mirror. Sure, you look great when you’re standing up, but does the outfit suddenly change when you sit down? You wouldn’t want your outfit to suddenly reveal – well, another side of you. Take a seat in front of a mirror to see exactly what you’ll look like to the interviewer seated across the table.

If you are interested in learning more about the opportunities available in the IT field, contact IT Accel today!