Computer Aided Design.


Computer Aided Design.





The power and potential of the modern personal computer, has also allowed use in functions such as technical drawing tool. So much so, thatcomputer aided design it has practically disappeared draughtsman technician profession, replaced by the CAD draughtsman or Computer Aided Design Draftman. Classic drawing tables with variable height, adjustable angle, etc. are to be used as tables to view or revise plans already printed on paper.

Computer Aided Design has increased the quality and quantity of information produced by engineers, architects, and designers in general, computer aided designas well as allowing the handling and storage of the plans of projects in physical spaces as small as a portable memory.

The use of libraries of digital information with template type and an almost unlimited amount of symbols, arrays, details standard, etc., as well as the possibilities of resize, copy, and modify all these elements have changed the way in which their products are designed by professionals graphics or drawings.

It is not cumbersome to make modifications according to the designs of professionals from other areas of the project and, for example, facilitates the exchange of information in a same team for the coordination of the different disciplines of the project.

Additionally, we must mention the inclusion, from the 1990s of the designcomputer aided design in 3 dimensions and the inclusion of animation for the visualization and analysis of the design. This jump genre a new management model of design that has enriched the inventiveness of design professionals, architects and engineers.

 

The pioneering and most popular commercial computer-assisted design program is AutoCad, although there are also lesser-known as TurboCad, Icad, VariCad and LibreCad versions.



Files Extensions.

Finally, and since we are talking about Software, we want to touch the subject of file extensions. These are nothing more than the identifier that will follow the point, in the files that generate the programs, for example: computer aided designmywriting.text (in this case refers to a so-called flat text file). This, specifically, is an agreed identification at the universal level.

There are many extensions of files that are in standard use agreed “for all” involved. It is the case of .exe for executables, and more.

The creators of Software used to differentiate the data files generated by its programs, very particular extensions and, unless we talk about compatibility with any standard, unique to that family of files and developer. For example, .xls is an identification of the Excel files. Another example is .dwg for AutoCad files or .doc for Word files.

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Graphics Editors and Music Editors


Photography and Graphics Editors.





Find a chart in any format, including a photograph, expand it, cut out it, change colors, brightness, contrast, apply visualization effects, add text, etc. These tasks and many more are possible on a personal computer using the graphics editors .

Simply place a copy on the screen or “Board” of any of your Graphics Editors and with only a few clicks of your Mouse, you can “transform” magically your image. Then you can save it to your disk and then use it in your projects.

graphics editorsThese programs as well as photo editors, allowing almost unlimited “Touchup” original images, are being used every day more for all types of users. From graphic designers to artists, professional photographers, journalists graphics, decorators and students of any of this racing and users as you or I, we all have needs that can be satisfied with this family of programs and applications.

There are so many and so varied, that it would be a never-ending task to list them. Just as a reference, and without this implying any preference on our part, we will mention the following:

  • Paint
  • Microsoft Picture Manager
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Open Gimp
  • Corel Draw

Players and Music Editors .

Several applications of the current computers that have become more popular in recent times are those related to copying, editing and music playback.




This has been provided for several important reasons which are:

  • Growth in the capabilities of the computer storage.
  • Improvement of musical format Conversion programs.
  • Evolution of portable MP3, MP4 players, etc.
  • Increase in interconnectivity between elements of conventional equipment of amplification and audio and digital audio playback.
  • Accessibility to smart phones with large memory capacity.
  • Availability of sales of Digital music sources.

Because as indicated above, and the increase in the number of users of music editorsDigital Music, have come to market a host of programs, many of them free, among which we must mention:

  • Microsoft Media Player
  • Apple ITunes
  • Nero Suite
  • WinAmp

There are also a large number of applications, many of them of use professional, that have changed the way in which made, learning or music production is practiced. Some addressed to specific instruments, others engaged in the edition of sound, in the end, could swell the list of applications to unsuspected limits but we don’t want to saturate the reader of information of commercial type, which can be easily found on the net.

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Databases . Fast Information Management.


Why Databases ?

One of the most important applications associated with the introduction of computers to the today world, is its information management capacity. The integration of programs that handle this information and performNeeding Databases with it, not only counts, statistics, classifications, legal systems, but also actions such as printing documents, massive correspondence, identification of commonalities, and many others, have made that databases will become one of the most important computer applications, not only for the common user, but for institutions , Companies, banks, companies, public utilities and private and governmental entities related to planning and statistics, the police institutions and many others.




To not lose sight of the scope and objectives of this Website, we will not refer to ” those big ” Bases of data, but applications in ‘domestic scale’ or staff of such programs.

What they are?

First of all, let’s look at what the databases are.

When we have a large amount of information to manage, organize, select and filter by one or more of its characteristics, the ideal (and modern) way of doing it is through what we call databases. We illustrate this with an example.

If you are a collector of music and has a collection of CDs of various artists, authors, genres, countries and times and want to have it classified to locate, identify and make written reports of the items in its collection, could make annotations on paper or card and make a kind of file with the information. This is not difficult to do if you have 40 or 50 discs and what you want to manage as their music, are only 4 or 5 parameters.

In this case you could locate with relative ease, for example, all the music by a sane composer, or all the artists who have made a version of a song, and in general any information you want within your tabs or pages written.

But suppose that your collection is 400 or 500 discs, and you wish to have rated and ranked your information with additional information, for example:

Song titles

Artists who play them

Composers who created them

Album in which were released

Their releases dates

Genre to which they belong

Duration time

Country

If you had to locate information in that “giant file” to share with other collectors, quite possibly would eventually abandoning “the task” in a short time, since his Hobby as a collector of music would become one burden rather than an enjoyment.Databases

Another notable example is the information of the members of a Club or association, or of its collection of books, or cooking recipes, or your address book, in the end, any task or hobby that requires lots of information management, is a potential application of the databases.




And…. How?

If what comes to your mind is: “But I don’t know how to make databases”, or “What the databases are”?, then I am pleased to inform you that thanks to the existence of the personal computers and to the work of an infinite number of Software developers, it is today very easy structure in your home, Office, Club , etc. a database that handles lots of information with absolute precision.

The most important concept you need to understand and manage is the ‘Field’.

Fields of a database are not more than the headings of each feature of the information. The rest is to define the format under which that information will be stored. Thus, the information fields will contain dates, should have this format, fields that only contain names, for example, must have alphanumeric format, fields that contain ages are numerical, and so on.

Else, generation of reports, search filters, sorting of information, etc. is responsible the programs that can be purchased in the market, sometimes even for free.

Even most of those programs include instructions and recommendations for structuring your database in the most convenient way. So, try it with some of their needs, hobbies or interests. It is not difficult and once you already have in use your first information manager, as many call them, will bless the existence of these powerful tools.

Some DatabasesAccording to its popularity the best known are:

  • Microsoft Access
  • Apple FileMaker
  • LibreOffice Base Database

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Presentations Programs , almost like a Movie.


Presentations Programs .

Although the “birth” of personal computers began to appear Editing and Publication Programs, it was not until the early 80s, with the advent of color monitors, color printers, projection equipment and overhead projectors, etc., that Presentations Programs for trying and presenting graphic information, increased their development.




Today, is not conceived the development of Visual or written presentations without the assistance of the microcomputers and Presentation programs.

Presentations Software is based in the elaboration of a number of individual pages or slides. The “slide” analogy is a reference to the slide projector. Slides may contain text, graphics, sound, movies, and other objects, which may be arranged freely. The presentation can be printed, displayed live on a computer, or navigated through at the command of the presenter. For larger audiences the computer display is often a video projector.

Presentations Programs provide three types of movements:

  • Entrance, emphasis, and exit of elements on a slide itself are controlled by what is called Custom Animations.Presentations Programs PP
  • Transitions, on the other hand, are movements between slides. These can be animated in a variety of ways.
  • Custom animation can be used to create small story boards by animating pictures to enter, exit or move.




Almost like a Movie.

Presentation Programs provide numerous features that offer flexibility and the ability to create a professional presentation. One of the features provides the ability to create a presentation that includes music which plays throughout the entire presentation or sound effects for particular slides. In addition to the ability to add sound files, the presentation can be designed to run, like a movie, on its own.

Presentations Programs allow the user to record the slide show with narration and a pointer. The user may customize slide shows to show the slides in a different order than originally designed and to have slides appear multiple times.

Ease in the handling of all types of texts and images, as well as the possibility of including effects of all types: Visual, transition, and even sound, makes up to a primary child, able to do work with professional-looking.

The most renowned programs of development of presentations are:Presentations Programs

  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • OpenOffice Impress
  • Corel Presentation
  • Apple KeyNote

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Spreadsheet . How it changed the World?


The brief History of the Spreadsheet .

We have mentioned that at the beginning of the Boom of the microcomputers, many professionals of different areas: engineering, administration, physicists, mathematicians, financiers, etc. focused on the increase of productivity and automation and accuracy of his calculations by making use of the extremely innovative equipments, so were given the task of developing their own programs especially in BASIC. That was the programming language most accessible at that time, when the word: Spreadsheet , had not any special meaning.




In 1979, two brilliant graduates of Harvard: Dan Bricklin and Bob Frankston forever changed the concept to develop the first spreadsheet: Visicalc

This program was developed in the most popular of the computers of the era, the Apple II was baptized thus by Bricklin and Frankston as simplification of terms: Visual Calculator and was the first application of productivity used in a personal computer not linked to the processing of words.

After its popularity, many companies developed and enriched the concept thus: Lotus 123, Multiplan, Multicalc, Supercalc, and other lesser known.

The concept of the Spreadsheet is based on the use of a sheet divided into columns and rows marked with letters and numbers, respectively, so that each box or cell of the sheet has a unique location for the type, for example, B18, (column B, row 18) that can host any content: text, numbers or formulas and which can interact with the rest of the cells in the planned form by the user or developer of the sheet.

The simplest example is reflected in the following figures:

spreadsheets

In this example, we have placed the label NUMBER X in the box A1, the label NUMBER Y in the box B1, the label SUM X+ Y in box C1. Let us say that those are the headings of the columns in the table.

EXCEL2 spreadsheet

Then, in the box C2 write a formula of the type: A2 + B2, which indicates that C2 will show always the sum of the values that we put in A2 and B2

EXCEL3 spreadsheet

And finally, to set the desired values: 4 in A2 and 8 in B2, and accept such inputs, shows the value of the formula already executed in C2.

Easy, right?

This concept became repetitive calculations in child’s play, and I self to forget the tedious (but exciting) elaboration of programs that execute repetitive calculations with different variables. The answer to the question than to sweat to the Accountants of large chains of operations in the various fields: engineering, finance, statistics, etc.: and… What if…? It became easy and allowed, since then and forever, the evaluation of scenarios without limitations.

So that for better understand the potential of electronic sheets of calculation, and without wishing to underestimate to Visicalc, whose concept remains unchanged, we want to let know you that through all these years have come on the market of Software continuous improvement of these sheets and have joined functions which, practically, make this type of program essential to exploit the potential of computers in any area of knowledge.




Then we’ll list the most important characteristics that have Spreadsheet existing today.

From the point of view of shape or appearance and for the purposes of presentation of the calculations, reports, etc., the most important are:

  • Variable dimensions at will of the user of the dimensions (high and wide) of columns and rows, and therefore of all cells.
  • Possibility to use ANY kind, variety, color, size, alignment and format of letters and numbers.
  • And finally, almost all functions for texts that have word processors.

From the point of view of the calculation tool as such, the most important features are:

  • Possibility of working with ALMOST ALL the formulas used by man, including: trigonometry, logarithms, statistical calculations, logical functions, text functions, probability, financial Formulas, engineering, time and date, anyway, its calculation capabilities are virtually unlimited.
  • Planning calculations in sequence through MACROS, which are nothing more than the programming of actions in the spreadsheet of form pre-programmed by user.
  • Possibility of working with electronic books of calculation, i.e., with sheets that can be linked between them.

And finally, and as an element that places them at the top of their additional possibilities of use, the integration of productivity features:

  • Development of graphics of all kinds: bars, lines, Areas, Dispersion, etc. with the capture of the data of the own sheet.
  • Design and management of configurable data Bases and with a very powerful scheme of filters, which are also linked with external databases on the same platform.

According to the volume of users that use them, Spreadsheets more important today are:spreadsheets

  • Microsoft Excel
  • OpenOffice Calc
  • Apple Numbers
  • Google Sheets

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Word Processors


Word Processors.

The first application to get popularized on this new era of computing, were the  text editors, best known as word processing programs or word Processors . Incorporating this tool to companies and offices, forever changed the focus of the secretarial activity. They have been raising levels of productivity and quality of documents of any kind previously undreamt standards.




These programs allow you to create, edit, format, and print texts. Nowadays almost all existing on the market are capable of handling a huge amount of additional functions of which we mention the most used, such as:

    • Selection of fonts and within each of these, an infinite number of sizes, colors, etc. Additionally you can specify types italic, bold, underlined, and any combination of all of these, including coloring letters, and special characters.
    • Formatting the text or document in all their combinations of margins, indents, spacing, line spacing, etc..
    • Spell of the texts introduced in any language, including correction suggestions.
    • Basic text translation into any language.word processors
    • Generation and modification of an infinite number of templates for any type of documents in common use. This include¬† letters, memoranda, curriculum vitae, technical reports and brochures to one or more columns, etc.
    • Inclusion of graphics, special characters, math formulas and typesettable tables to meet any need.
    • Development of indexes and tables of contents of documents.
    • Printing in different formats.
    • Inclusion of numbering of pages and chapters or sections.
    • Inclusion of headers and footers in page .




In short, there is no treatment needs of texts and documents which can not be satisfied through the use of current word processors. For this reason, they have become the main tool of productivity of writers, journalists, etc.

More Important Word Processors:word processors logos

There are a large number of processors on the market. Only to mention some of the more popular (by volumes of users) are:

  • Microsoft Word
  • Apple Pages
  • Open Office Writer



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