I.T. Tools for Remote Communication
CAPE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY UNIT TWO MODULE TWO – I. T. TOOLS FOR REMOTE COMMUNICATION USE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY TOOLS TO ACCESS AND COMMUNICATE WITH REMOTE INFORMATION SOURCES Information technology – the tools and techniques used to process and communicate information Remote information source – information held in or on a computer or other medium which is not located in the same physical location as the person wanting access to this information.
In order to access remote information sources one will need a tool or a set of tools which are both hardware and software. The following is a list of such tools – some hardware, some software, some both: Communication software – programs used to provide remote access to systems, and exchange files and messages in text, audio and/or video formats between different computers or users. Communication software runs on computers, tablets, mobile phones and other specialized devices.
Some examples of remote communication software are terminal emulators, file transfer programs; instant messaging programs, real time chat programs (IRC), teleconferencing and video conferencing software, and email programs. Browsers – short for web browser – a software application used to locate, retrieve and also display content on the World Wide Web. The content handled by web browsers includes text, images and video. A web browser is made up of HTML code and operates under the HTTP (hypertext transfer protocol) Email systems – software for creating, sending, receiving and organizing electronic mail.
Modern desktop email clients like Microsoft Outlook, Windows Live Mail and Mozilla Thunderbird offer advanced features for managing email, including WYSIWYG editors for composing email messages, anti-spam and anti-phishing security protection, advanced search capabilities, and rules and filters for more efficiently handling and organizing messages and email folders. A large number of online email services, called webmail, exist with features and functionality for managing e-mail similar to their desktop email software counterparts.
Some of the more popular online email services are Yahoo! Mail, Gmail, Hotmail and AOL Mail. Email systems also need an email server which is a computer configured to be the email post office with the task of managing the email service. It receives stores and dispatches email messages to and from email addresses. Facsimile systems – A facsimile machine is a device that can send or receive pictures and text over a telephone line. Fax machines work by digitizing an image i. e. dividing it into a grid of dots. Each dot is either on or off, depending on whether it is black or white.
Electronically, each dot is represented by a bit that has a value of either 0 (off) or 1 (on). In this way, the fax machine translates a picture into a series of zeros and ones (called a bit map) that can be transmitted like normal computer data. On the receiving side, a fax machine reads the incoming data, translates the zeros and ones back into dots, and reprints the picture. A fax machine consists of an optical scanner for digitizing images on paper, a printer for printing incoming fax messages, and a telephone for making the connection.
Telephone – colloquially referred to as a phone, the telephone is a point-to-point telecommunications device that transmits and receives sounds, usually the human voice. It’s most basic function is to allow two people separated by large distances to talk to each other. A business telephone system is a system where multiple telephones are used by businesses in an interconnected fashion that allows for features such as call handling and transferring, conference calling, call metering and accounting, private and shared voice message boxes, etc.
A business telephone system can range from just a few phones in a small business up to a complex private branch exchange (PBX) system utilized by large businesses. Business phone systems can function over the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) and/or over the Internet (Internet telephony or VoIP). Business telephone systems can also be delivered as a hosted service (typically referred to as a centrex), which can free companies from having to invest in costly equipment.
Mobile telephones – many individuals no longer have a landline and have turned to mobile computing for all their telephone needs. Young people especially do more than half there communicating using a cellular phone which allows them to not only have voice calls but to send text messages Pager – A pager is a small telecommunications device that receives (and, in some cases, transmits) alert signals and/or short messages. This type of device is convenient for people expecting telephone calls, but who are not near a telephone set to make or return calls immediately.
A typical one-way pager fits easily in a shirt pocket; some are as small as a wristwatch. A miniature, short-range wireless receiver captures a message, usually accompanied by a beep. The simplest one-way pagers display the return-call telephone number of the person who sent the message. Alternatively, a code can be displayed that indicates which of several designated parties is requesting a return phone call. Sophisticated one-way pagers can display short text messages. Until recently, pagers were designed as receive-only devices.
However, despite the engineering challenge, a two-way pager, also called a two-way messaging device or two-way interactive system, has been developed. A typical unit is about the size of a pocket calculator and has a built-in, miniature keyboard and a liquid crystal display (LCD) screen that can display several lines of text and/or simple graphics. Mobile phones have replaced pagers for most users. However, because they are reliable in some situations where mobile phones are not, pagers are still widely used by essential services personnel, such as those in the medical and emergency-related professions.
New uses for pagers have also arisen. For example, restaurants often use pagers to let customers know when their tables are ready. Computer – The transmission of data from one computer to another, or from one device to another is called data communication. A communications device, therefore, is any machine that assists data transmission. The computer is one such principal machine. For the computer to assist in communications it must be running programs that make it possible to transmit data i. e. communication software.
Word processor, spreadsheet, presentation software, desktop publishing software – these productivity tools can be used to create, edit, and print documents. While of all computer applications, word processing is the most common, the product of the others can also be printed. The output from productivity tools can be snail-mailed, emailed, uploaded to websites, and communicated using other www technologies Internet Tools Interactive online services – is a business that provides its subscribers with a wide variety of data transmitted over telecommunications lines.
Online services provide an infrastructure in which subscribers can communicate with one another, either by exchanging e-mail messages or by participating in online conferences(forums). In addition, the service can connect users with an almost unlimited number of third-party information providers. Subscribers can get up-to-date stock quotes, news stories hot off the wire, articles from many magazines and journals, in fact, almost any information that has been put in electronic form.
Of course, accessing all this data carries a price. Three of the largest online services are America Online, Compuserve and MSN. telnet – terminal emulation is a program for networks that connects pcs to the server on the network and allows one to enter commands on the pc and have them executed directly on the server as if one was sitting in front of the server. This enables you to control and communicate with other servers on the network. Telnet is a common way to remotely control Web servers.
As this is a service that allows local computers to control remote computers, technical personal in organizations can use it to troubleshoot problems in other branches and hackers use these kinds of programs to connect to and control servers on unsecured networks. ftp – Short for file transfer protocol, this is the protocol for exchanging files over the Internet. FTP is most commonly used to download a file from a server using the Internet or to upload a file to a server (e. g. , uploading a Web page file to a server). The owners of website rarely host them themselves.
But maintaining the content of the website is still up to them. They create the new content for their websites on their local machines. They then use an ftp program to connect to and upload and download the files from their website on the remote server to and from their local machine. When they have completed this task we can then see the new pages on their websites. You can access FTP sites by two different methods: either directly through your web browser, or using an FTP application (such as Winsock FTP). Both methods require a logon procedure.
Some FTP sites allow anonymous login and allow you to enter your email address as a password. Other FTP sites also allow anonymous login but require a special password (such as “guest”, “visitor”, or other password. ) Still other sites have restricted login and passwords limited to specific people or groups message boards aka bulletin board system (BBS) – An electronic message board is a computer running software that allows users to log in and perform functions such as uploading and downloading software and data, reading news and bulletins, and exchanging messages with other users.
Message boards allow threaded conversations in which the comments on a posting are attached to that posting in an indented manner. Message boards for example can be for a class in which students get to communicate with each other and the teacher and discuss assignments and class material. It is often used in this manner in on-line courses. newsgroups – This is a special interest online discussion group or forum where one can post and reply to posted messages on particular topics.
It is like a public message board but with the topic of interest pre-selected by the person who set up the newsgroup. Users are required to subscribe to a newsgroup. mailing list – while any individual or company can have a mailing list in their email the formal definition of a mailing list is a list of people who have subscribed to a particular service and have given permission for their contact information to be released to anyone who provides this service.
Newsgroups e. g. will have a mailing list to whom they send notices when something changes in the newsgroup. internet telephony refers to communication services such as voice, fax, SMS and/or voice messaging services which are transported via the internet instead of the public switched telephone network. VoIP – voice over internet protocol is a slightly broader term which covers voice communication over any IP network.