Tag Archives: Apple (Company)

Convert PDF to DOC with a Mac — for FREE!

I like to think of myself as relatively computer literate. When I was in elementary school, I taught myself how to use HTML and created/designed my own website. I don’t know if I’ve linked to it on here, but it’s still functioning. Of course, I don’t remember the login or password for it, so there’s no way for me to edit it, but it’s really odd to remember back to where (and when) I was during the creation of it.

Since my GeoCities days, the internet has changed quite a bit. I’ve created a few websites (mostly with WordPress, either through the free version or through the version you need to download), but I wouldn’t — by any stretch of the imagination — say that this is a strength of mine. My skills here are basic, (but when compared to the average person, one might say that they’re a bit beyond basic).

As a tangent, this reminds me of something during my time as an psychology undergraduate. During the “capstone” course for that major, I remember the professor telling us that the department had majors take a test at the beginning and end of the program. They found something interesting: when students took the test at the end of the program, students were reporting that they knew less about psychology than when they started the degree. That is, one of the questions on the ‘pre-test’ was rate your level of understanding of psychology on a Likert scale (one to ten) and that same test appeared on the ‘post-test.’ The department was finding that the average score on the post-test for that question was lower than the average score on the pre-test. Why, you might ask?

Well, as students began to learn more about the subject of psychology, they realized just how vast a subject that it is and as a result, realized just how much they didn’t know about the subject. Food for thought.

Anyways, yes, technology.

Does the phrase “ALT+TAB” or “Command+TAB” mean anything to you? What about “CTRL+F” or “Command+F”?

I’m definitely part of the 10% of people who know about things like this, but I’m sure there are a whole host of things that computers and the internet can do that are unknown to me. On that note, I recently learned of something that my Mac can do that I had no idea it could do — convert to PDF.

All this time, I had been using various websites to do this for me, but as it turns out, a simple process and my Mac will do it for me. Who knew! I wonder what else my Mac can do.

My Answers to the 13 Weirdest Interview Questions You’ll Hear in 2014, Part 2

In yesterday’s post, I started to answer some of the weirdest interview questions you’ll hear in 2014 as chosen by Mashable. Today, hopefully, I’ll get through the rest of ’em. Let’s get to it!

7. Describe to me the process and benefits of wearing a seatbelt. – Active Network

When one sits down inside a car, in most cases, there’s a belt that they can fasten across their lap and/or over their shoulder. If you enter on the right side of the car, the seatbelt will normally be found on the right side of your leg/shoulder. If one enters on the left side of the car, the seatbelt will normally be found on the left side of one’s leg/shoulders. To fasten the seatbelt, pull the belt across your body/lap and insert the metal fitting into the buckle, until you hear a *click*. Then, if you have a lap belt, you’ll need to pull the strap until the belt is snug — but not too uncomfortable — over your body. The primary benefit of a seatbelt is to ensure that your body is in the optimal position, in the event of a collision. If one weren’t wearing a seatbelt and one’s car was in a collision, one’s rate of injury is extraordinarily higher than if one were wearing a seatbelt.

8. How does the Internet work? – Akamai

Very well for some. Two very good examples: Justin Bieber and Carly Rae Jepsen. Without the internet, there’s an extremely low probability that Bieber’s eventual manager finds Bieber’s YouTube account and sees him singing. And without Justin’s manager finding him through YouTube, his world, and the world of many “Beliebers,” would be quite different today. Building on that is Carly Rae Jepsen. Jepsen had made a name for herself in Canada, but when Bieber tweeted a YouTube video of her song, she became an international star.

9. If you were a pizza delivery man, how would you benefit from scissors? – Apple

If I were a pizza delivery man, it’s probably only because that’s my cover for being a spy. As a spy who’s walking around as a pizza delivery man, the scissors would come in handy when I needed to cut the electricity to house that I was delivering pizza to, but I needed to do so under a cloud of darkness.

10. Why is a tennis ball fuzzy? – Xerox

When people play tennis, they usually hold more than one ball at a time and in order to do this, sometimes they’ve got some sort of velcro like receiver on their hip. The makers of tennis balls found that as a way to ensure that tennis balls didn’t fall off of the velcro on player’s hips and to ensure their safety, they needed to make the balls fuzzy. [Note: I’m almost 100% sure this isn’t the reason why tennis balls are fuzzy because tennis has been around for a lot longer than velcro, but it was the first thing that came to mind and better represents how I might have answered if I were surprised with this in an interview.]

~

That last question from Xerox kind of threw me off a bit, so I’m going to put this on pause and come back tomorrow to finish up the last three questions.

Markets Are Cyclical: Why the Internet Monopolies Don’t Matter (that much)

Survival of the biggestThere was a nice feature on Technology in this past week’s Economist. In fact, there were a number of articles I found intriguing (medical tricorders was a good one!), but I want to draw your attention to one in particular: Battle of the internet giants – Survival of the biggest. The case is made that these internet behemoths are getting too big and that their scope needs to be curbed. Okay, I understand that, but I think that the fear is a bit unfounded. Here’s why.

Remember back to when railroads were the only way to get around? Remember when all commerce and long-distance travel was done by locomotive? Now, I don’t know if this is a perfect comparison, but bear with me for a second. There were at least a few big players in the railroad game back in the 19th century (Union Pacific, Central Pacific, and Southern Pacific). I’m sure that there were people back then who were irked that there were monopolies in the railroad business and probably wanted there to be more regulation (like is being argued in the article about the internet).

However, with the turn of the 20th century, a new form of transportation was starting to emerge: the automobile. It didn’t happen overnight, but the automobile eventually became a much more preferred method of transportation.

There’s another example: television. Remember in the early days of TV, there were just a few channels? If you had a TV (and you watched it), you probably saw the same program that everyone else who had a TV was seeing. Again, I don’t know, but I imagine that some folks were pretty peeved by this monopoly. Although, slowly but surely, there came to be more and more choice of TV channels. In fact, it’s gotten to the point where we’re unlikely to ever see the most watched television program eclipsed because there’s so much choice.  Though, some would argue that there still are monopolies in television.

And now what’s starting to breach the monopolies of TV? The internet and online media. There was a slide deck that was passed around courtesy of Business Insider earlier last week that shows the future of digital. There were lots of graphs and lots of data. One of the graphs showed that the percentage of live TV watching has dropped 25% in just the last 4 years. Conversely, recorded TV watching is up over 50%! And a new category has emerged: streaming TV. Whereas there was no streaming TV watching in 2008, it now makes up 7% of primetime viewing in the US.

So, even with all of this choice in television, there is still room for newness and growth.

Tying this back into my argument about the internet behemoths: maybe we can’t see it now, but based on history, I would bet that there’s going to be something that comes along (eventually) and unseats these internet behemoths. Of course, that’s not a reason not to regulate them, but it is something to keep in mind when you see articles like the one in last week’s Economist.