Teaching Computer and Network Security

Security

I have a new title at work to add to my list. I am the new HIPAA Security Officer. Since we deal with some medical information we needed a point of contact for all of the HIPAA Security-related concerns. The first step the company did was send me to a HIPPA Security training where I became certified to perform this new duty.

I always take the jobs given to me with great respect. When someone puts their trust in me that I will be performing a job for them and in return keeping us from ever having to worry about court cases. I started what has never been done at our company. I created a security and computer training once a month that is mandatory for everyone to attend. Doing this I get to answer questions about security issues. It also allows me one on one time with the staff to hear about any security concerns. I received positive feedback and everyone was scared and much more aware of Passwords and how to better secure not just the workplace but also their personal lives.

Another way I stay in constant contact with all of the staff members is to use Microsoft Teams. This is a great communication tool that all of us use every day. We are a technology-driven company. We only use the phones on our desks to conduct business outside of the company. All internal communications are completed using Teams. So I sent up a new Team and it allows me to post current topics on Security and Technology.

If you ever need someone from the outside to speak to your companies or educational staff about security please email me and we can set something up to help you out. You can never take security lightly.

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Swift Programming for IOS

Swift Programming

If you are in the computer field in today’s World you can never stop learning new and exciting computer topics. As you can see from the title I am currently taking a course on writing code for IOS. I have a few projects in mind for the iPhone and the iPad. I have been coding for Windows for years. You can see from my past blog posts that I have also been writing bash and power shell scripts for Windows and Linux Servers.

I have also spent a lot of time programming MySQL and MSSQL Databases and writing front end programs in both Visual Basic and PHP for Web Development. The simple truth is once you get one programming language down and learn how to debug syntax other programming languages are not hard to follow. Well back to the lessons.

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Setting Up New iMacs

 

iMacs

At work, I am responsible for all of our Apple products from iPads to iMacs as well as all Mac Laptops. On top of this, I am also responsible for all security cameras and recording devices. I am also the Software Engineer which mean I take care of all of the databases and client software for well over 5000 devices.

We were lucky enough to get new 21″ iMacs. I am working to get all of them set up exactly the same way. By doing this I know that when each user sits down to work on these devices they will all have the same experience.

If you are looking for a new computer for your house I would have to suggest an Apple Mac. The operating system and the software are the most stable that you can get. And if you need help learning or just setting it up please reach out to me.

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Writing and Coding Scripts

Scripting

The words I truly enjoy at work is when I am told that no one could get this automated program or connection to a database to work. They feel it can not be done? I have been connecting programs and automating software programs for years. I also enjoy writing automated scripts for our servers.

When you are learning how to work with scripting languages I would advise you to choose a few different ones. Just as there are many tools in a toolbox you will find there are many different scripting tools to get the job done right. I would also advise you to comment your work as you go. You should also keep clear notes on the process that you used to build the script. This is really handy if you ever have to go back and change something as programs or servers change. Or you never know if you get promoted you might have to hand off the scripts you wrote to someone else?

The truth is if you are working in the IT field and are responsible for software or servers you will want to learn and be the best you can be with scripting. When you can automate a program or process you will have more time to work on other projects.

If you have a process or a daily software task that you would like to be automated look me up. I might be able to give you some guidance and be able to share my knowledge with you.

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Ubuntu Server

Ubuntu Server

I was once asked on an interview what do you know about Linux? Of course, I responded with the answer that I can get around the OS pretty well. I am a long time Windows Server person like many of you out there. But the simple truth is that when you work as an IT Director or a Network Administrator you have to work in many types of server environments.

I was asked once in another interview years ago what I knew about Novell Netware? My response was that I have never seen Novell but I have heard of it. I then followed up with if they had a book lying around I am sure I can do what they needed me to do with the OS. Well, I got the job and my first day they wanted me to create some file shares. They handed me a book on Novell and within an hour I came back and said the file shares were ready to use.

What I have told many interns that I have trained over the years is that you can never be scared of any Server OS. Every time you come upon a new system go into it as a learning experience. Also if you can go home and set up a VM with the OS and begin poking around. And when you are learning to take the time to take notes on what you learned, they will come in handy down the road.

Once you do get the feeling for a new Server OS is to remember to revisit it and keep brushing up on your skills. You never know when you might take an interview and be asked questions about one of these systems.

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Reading A Great Pass Time

Stack of Books

Reading is a great way to pass the time and keep your mind fresh and active. As you can see from the home page here I do set up a reading challenge using Good Reads every year. My reason for doing this is not so much to speed my way to my goal but to keep me reading in more of a constant pace. Think of reading as a movie that was never and most likely will never be made from the book you are reading. It is just great to have some alone time and wrap yourself into a book. Written words can bring to life a part of media that you can explore on your own. What I like the most is that I never have to fast forward over a commercial.

Start your kids off reading at an early age. Even when they are too young to read on their own read to them and show them pictures in the book. Another good step to get your children to read it to have them see you reading. Hand your child a book when you sit in your favorite reading chair and cut of some time of the day that you and your child read.

Read what you like. I normally lean towards crime novels or horror if I can find a good one that is. I have also found a couple good title of science fiction that I have not tried yet but feel it will expend my reading and make me think a little more about what might be out there.

I hear too often that someone does not have time to read. If you have time to watch series after series on TV or you binge watch Net Flix then you have time to read a good book or two. I hope this post inspires you to find a good book open it up and read. Check out My Books at the top of this page and read the story of Random Numbers.

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Getting Relocated

Something New

Working for a larger company that has many locations is rewarding. I have been working in a school district for the past two years. Like you working where you work we build many connections with the people who work for that company or school. We also start to build our skills on whatever it is you do. And when you work for a company with many locations they may find you a position that fit your new skill set. This is when you may be relocated to a larger location where your skills are needed.

So after two years, I find myself moving to a larger location with more opportunities. What is really nice is that I still work for the same parent company. So what can I say about working for an outsourcing company? Well working for an outsourcing company allows your talents to grow. If for any reason one location closes down you will not find yourself out of work giving the fact that you can be moved to another location that the company services.

I have to say I am a little nervous leaving those relationships that have been built over the past two years. But I am confident that my skill will enable me to fit into a new team and provide my technical services to a larger group of people who need them. So as I sit here this morning getting ready for this new chapter I am looking forward to building new relationships and friends working in a new location.

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Self Employed Or Working For Others

Self Employed

I like many of you reading this may have struggled with this topic at one time or another? Working for someone or setting off on your own. Years ago I had a very successful business but like many businesses, I was doing something that was to soon. I started my own Internet provider company around 1998. Now if you think back to 1998 you might recall that the Internet was no big deal. Most people had AOL and were happy playing online games hosted by one company. I was running a small three phone bulletin board our of my apartment before setting off to build the next big thing. At that time I would go out to sell a website and every business owner asked me what would they want one of those for? But when I ran this company I was still working full time as a Paramedic.

After selling off the business because the big guns of Comcast and Verizon were getting into the Internet game we could not compete. But I still had my full-time job to fall back on.

I did later take a new job full-time working for schools at the Technology Director. But as things go sometimes even a forever job is not forever. That is what brings us to today’s post.

Self-employment is a way for you to secure your own future. I never heard of anyone laying their self off from their own business. Okay, one name comes to mind of someone who started a company only to be put out by the very people who he hired, Steve Jobs. But he returned later with fresh eyes and made it one of the richest companies in the world.

But self-employment brings its own stresses and let downs. You may be your own boss but you have to be willing to worry about something 24/7/365. But for years since being in the technology field, I always seem to be doing work at home in off hours for the company I am with. I guess it is just how I am wired or maybe its because I owned my own business I know how important it is to keep all of the technology running smoothly all the time?

If you watch Shark Tank you will hear this statement. “If you work full time and try to have a business the business becomes more of a hobby then a real business.” So I would say if you are self-employed or you are leaning that way you should be ALL IN. We all love a safety net in our lives but when you are ALL IN you will be focused every minute of every day on growing your business.

I would like to hear your thoughts on being self-employed and what it means to you?

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Collaborative Learning

collaborative-learning

Collaborative learning is a great way to teach for the 21st century. Today’s largest companies create and move their businesses by using collaborative meetings. Companies such as Google, Apple and Microsoft have teams that meet often to come up with the next big thing. Even programming companies work on large code projects with many programmers coming up with ideas and each writing a piece of the code.

Today’s education, for the most part, is leading this new way of educating children from elementary to high school and even in the college setting. With the help of great tools such as interactive whiteboards, Google Suite and Office 365 and much more. Smartphones can also be a great collaborative learning tool. The focus is getting students to learn together much like the businesses of today.

I enjoy walking into a classroom and seeing a teacher walking around the room and assisting the students in learning in group settings. The day’s of the teacher standing in front of the classroom and lecturing have been put back into the dark ages of education.

If you do teach or even lead teams in a business find ways to have each person or student contribute to the overall lesson. You will find great rewards when you see how much your students or staff know.

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Teaching for Modern Times

Tech Teaching Tools

Teaching students to be prepared for the modern world is a hard task. Teaching using technology can be default because it is ever changing. Adapting to those changes can be a challenge. But as you can see from the picture above many great tools have been created for us to use in our lessons. I try to adopt at least one new tool a year to help with education. You also have to have a good clear vision when adopting new tech tools. You never want to have your students feel that they are on tech overload.

I like to see a blend of online learning with a mixture of book and classroom instruction. This way we can reach all types of learners. Some students will learn better at a self-pace while others strive to keep pace in the classroom. Using a good mixture of both will keep all of the students engaged on the subject matter.

I do believe in digital notes. How many times have you wanted to refer to a note to find you left it in the office or classroom? With digital notes and using a tool such as Evernote or Google Keep, I can always have my notes on every device I carry. Besides, it is easier to carry my phone in my pocket then carry around my paper notebook.

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