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Visualizing Technology, Complete, 2nd Edition

By Debra Geoghan

Published by Pearson

Published Date: Jan 7, 2013

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This book is unlike anything you've seen before.  You won't find long paragraphs of text that go on forever; instead you will find a highly visual layout with bite-sized chunks of texts, images used to represent concepts, making them easy to remember, chapters organized as articles with catchy headlines, and a Facebook page to stimulate and foster discussion.


What is a computer? Hardware. File Management. Digital Devices and Multimedia. Application Software. System Software. The Internet and World Wide Web. Communicating and Sharing: The Social Web. Networks and Communication. Security and Privacy. Databases. Software and Application Development. Blogger. Mind Maps. Google Docs.


With an innovative and easy to read writing style, Visualizing Technology teaches readers the basics of using a computer, from File Management to Hardware and Software and the Internet.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. What Is a Computer?


What Does a Computer Do?


Objective 1: Explain the functions of a computer

Necessity Is the Mother of Invention

The Information Processing Cycle


A Brief History of Computers

Objective 2: Describe the evolution of computer hardware, and explain the importance of Moore’s Law

History of Computers

Moore’s Law


How To: Use QR Codes


Bits and Bytes

Objective 3: Describe how computers present data using binary code

Binary Code

Measuring Data


Let’s Get Personal

Objective 4: List the various types and characteristics of personal computers

Desktop Computers

Portable Computers

Notebooks, netbooks, tablet PCs

Mac or PC?


Beyond the Desktop

Objective 5: Give examples of other personal computing devices

Handheld and Mobile Devices

Smartphones and Tablets

Video Game Systems


Multiuser Computers

Objective 6: List the various types and characteristics of multiuser computers



Distributed and Grid Computing


Computers are Everywhere: Ubiquitous Computing

Objective 7: Explain the terms “ubiquitous computing” and “convergence ”

Embedded Computers



Objectives Recap

Key Terms


End of Chapter Exercises

Application Project


Chapter 2. Application Software


Making Business Work

Objective 1: Identify types and uses of business productivity software

Office Suites

Database Software

Other Types of Business Software


Making It Personal

Objective 2: Identify types and uses of personal software

Office Applications

Finance and Tax Preparation Software

Entertainment and Multimedia Software

Educational and Reference Software

Portable Apps


How To: Create a Document Using Wordpad or Textedit


Will It Run?

Objective 3: Assess a computer system for software compatibility

Your System Specs

System Requirements


Where to Get It

Objective 4: Compare various ways of obtaining software


Free or Fee

Sources of Software


Your Head in the Cloud

Objective 5: Discuss the importance of cloud computing

Cloud Computing


How To: Edit Photos with Photoshop Express Editor Online


Key Terms


Application Project

End of Chapter Exercises



Chapter 3.File Management


A Place for Everything

Objective 1: Create folders to organize files

Navigating Your Computer

Creating and Using Folders


How To: Organize Your Files


What’s in a Name?

Objective 2: Explain the importance of file extensions

File Names and Extensions

File Properties


Back It Up 

Objective 3: Explain the importance of backing up files

Windows Backup

OS X Time Machine

Other Backup Software

Backup to the Cloud

Cloud Storage


Shrink It

Objective 4: Demonstrate how to compress files

Types of File Compression

Working with File Compression


How To: Create a Compressed (Zipped) Folder


It’s Always in the Last Place You Look

Objective 5: Use advanced search options to locate files

Using Windows to Search For Files

Searching in MAC OS X

Using Boolean Logic to Refine Searches


That’s Not the Program I Want to Open This File Type

Objective 6: Change the default program associated with a file type

Setting Program Defaults

Managing File Type Associations


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


Application Project

End of Chapter Exercises 


Chapter 4. Hardware  


The CPU: The Brains of the Operation

Objective 1: Explain the function of the CPU

CPU Functions

Instruction Cycle

CPU Performance

Cooling System: Air Conditioning for the Processor


Getting to Know Your System Unit and Motherboard

Objective 2: Identify the parts of a system unit and motherboard

The Motherboard



A Place for Everything

Objective 3: Compare different types of storage devices

Optical Discs

Solid-State Storage

Hard Drives


What Goes In

Objective 4: List different input devices and their uses


Mouse and Other Pointing Devices

Digital Cameras and Webcams


Microphones and Game Controllers


. . . Must Come Out

Objective 5: List the different video and audio output devices and their uses

Video Output Devices

Audio Output Devices


Pick a Printer

Objective 6: Compare the features of different types of printers

Inkjet Printers

Photo Printers

Dye-Sublimation Printers

Thermal Printers

Laser Printers

Multifunction Devices

Plotters and 3D Printers


How To: Manage Printing on Your Computer


Adaptation: Making Technology Work for You

Objective 7: Explain and provide examples of the concept of adaptive technology

Adaptive Input Devices

Adaptive Output Devices


Communicate, Communicate, Communicate

Objective 8: Discuss the different communication devices that can be used

Network Adapters


Fax Devices


How To: Assess Your Computer Hardware


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


End of Chapter Exercises

Application Project


Chapter 5. System Software (Formerly Chapter 6)


Who’s Being Bossy Now?

Objective 1: Explain what an operating system does

Provides User Interface

Manages Resources

Manages and Controls Hardware

Interacts with Software


How To: Examine and Update Your Printer Driver


Running the Show on Personal Computers 

Objective 2: Compare the most common stand-alone operating systems





How To: Your Desktop OS Up To Date

Objective 3: Recognize  the most common specialized operating systems

Embedded Operating Systems


The NOS Knows

Objective 4: Compare the most common network operating systems


Utilities You Should Use 

Objective 5: List and explain important disk utility software

Why Use Utilities?

Utilities for Disk Health


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


Application Project

End of Chapter Exercises


Chapter 6. Digital Devices and Multimedia


Digital Camera Basics

Objective 1: Explain the features of various types of digital cameras

Key Features

Types of Digital Cameras


Bridging the Gap: Transferring Photos

Objective 2: Compare different methods for transferring images from a digital camera

Memory Cards

USB or FireWire Cables

Wireless Transfer

Transffering to the Cloud


A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words: Editing, Printing, and Sharing Photos

Objective 3: List several ways to edit and print photos

Editing Photos

Printing and Sharing Photos

Making Sense of Sound


How To: Edit a Photo


Making Sense of Sound

Objective 4: Recognize different audio file types

Audio File Types

Media Software

Speech Recognition


Lights, Camera, Action 

Objective 5: Describe several ways to create videos

Screen Capture

Webcams and Video Conferencing

Video Cameras

Sharing Video


How To: Edit Videos Using the Youtube Editor


On the Move With Technology
Objective 6: Compare various mobile devices

Portable Media Players




Objectives Recap

Key Terms


End of Chapter Exercises

Application Project


Chapter 7. The Internet


Internet Timeline

Objective 1: Recognize the importance of the Internet

How it All Got Started

World Wide Web

Internet2 (I2)


Get Connected

Objective 2: Compare the types of Internet connections

So, How Do You Get Connected?

Connecting Without a Computer?


Get Connected 

Objective 3: Compare popular Web browsers


Configuring Your Web Browser

Add-ons, Plug-ins, and Toolbars


How To: Manage Browser, Home page, Favorites, and Search


Navigating the Net 

Objective 4: Demonstrate how to navigate the Web

Web Addresses

Smart Searching


How To: Use Google Docs


Would I Lie to You?

Objective 5: Discuss how to evaluate the credibility of information found on the Web

Who Wrote It?

What About the Design?


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


Application Project

End of Chapter Exercises


Chapter 8. Communicating and Sharing: The Social Web


Talk to Me

Objective 1: Compare different forms of synchronous online communication

Chat and IM



Leave a Message

Objective 2: Demonstrate how to use e-mail effectively

How Do You Read and Send E-mail?

Forums and Discussion Boards


There’s a Place for Everyone …

Objective 3: Discuss the roles of social media in today’s society

Social Network Sites

Social Video, Image, and Music Sites


How To: Create a LinkedIn Profile


Get Your Word Out 

Objective 4: Locate user-generated content in the form of a blog or podcast





How To: Create a Blog with Blogger


The Wisdom of the Crowd 

Objective 5: Discuss how wikis and other social media sites rely on the wisdom of the crowd


Social Review Sites

Social Bookmarking and News Sites



Objective 6: Explain the influence of social media on e-commerce

Types of e-Commerce

How Safe is My Credit Card?


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


End of Chapter Exercises

Application Project


Chapter 9. Networks and Communication

From Sneakernet to HotSpots

Objective 1: Discuss the importance of computer networks

Peer-to-Peer Networks

Client-Server Networks


How To: Share Files and Printers Using a Windows Homegroup



Objective 2: Compare different types of LANs and WANs

Small Networks

LAN topologies

Large Networks



Objective 3: List and describe the hardware used in both wired and wireless networks

Network Adapters

Network Hardware


Software and Protocols

Objective 4: List and describe the software and protocols used in both wired and wireless networks

Peer-to-Peer Network Software

Client-Server Network Software

Network Protocols


How To: Examine Network and Sharing Settings


Protecting Your Network

Objective 5: Explain how to protect a network

Layer 1–The Fence

Layer 2–Door Locks

Layer 3–Alarm Systems

Layer 4–Guard Dogs


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


End of Chapter Exercises

Application Project


Chapter 10. Security and Privacy

Cybercrime: They are Out to Get You

Objective 1: Discuss various types of cybercrime.

Personal Cybercrime

Cybercrime Against Organizations


Malware: Pick Your Poison

Objective 2: Differentiate between different types of malware.

Spam and Cookies

Adware and Spyware

Viruses, Worms, Trojans, and Rootkits


Shields Up!

Objective 3: Explain how to secure a computer.



Operating System


How To: Configure Secure Browser Settings


An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure

Objective 4: Discuss safe computing practices.

User Accounts

Securing a User Account


Acceptable Use Policies


How To: Secure a Microsoft Word Document


The Law is On Your Side

Objective 5: Discuss laws related to computer security and privacy.

The Enforcers

Current Laws

Objectives Recap

Key Terms


Application Project

End of Chapter Exercises


Chapter 11. Databases

Database Basics

Objective 1: Identify the parts of a database.

Tables, Fields, and Records

Forms, Queries, and Reports


A Database for Every Purpose

Objective 2: Compare the four types of databases.

Flat File Databases

Relational Databases

Object-Oriented Databases

Multidimensional Databases


How To: Create a Form Using Google Docs


The Tools of the Trade

Objective 3: Explain database management systems.

Creating a Database

Data Validation




How To: Create a Home Inventory


Data In . . . Information Out

Objective 4: Discuss important information systems used in business.

Office Support Systems

Transaction Processing

Management Information Systems

Decision Support Systems

Expert Systems and Artificial Intelligence


Real World Databases

Objective 5: List examples of databases used in law enforcement and science.

Law Enforcement


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


End of Chapter Exercises

Application Project


Chapter 12. Program Development

Getting from Idea to Product

Objective 1: Describe the system development life cycle.

System Development Life Cycle (SDLC)

Other Development Models


Coding the System

Objective 2: Describe the program development cycle.

Program Development Cycle


How To: Create a Flowchart


Tools of the Trade

Objective 3: Compare various programming languages.

Programming Languages

Programming Tools

Web Programming

How To: Automate a Task Using a Macro in Word


Artificial Intelligence

Objective 4: Explain the term artificial intelligence.


Expert Systems

Neural Networks


Objectives Recap

Key Terms


Application Project

End of Chapter Exercises


Appendix: Microsoft Office Applications Projects



Photo Credits