Posts Tagged 'internet'

YourDictionary

On the following lines, it is going to be described one free on-line english dictionary called Yourdictionary. This dictionary can be visited on the website http://www.yourdictionary.com/. As it has already been said, it is an english dictionary that translate the words from english to english, in other words, monolingual. That is why this book is particularly useful for those persons who are english native speakers or that have already a high level of English. However, many people do not only need only english dictionaries and thanks to this web they can find dictionaries for a lot of different languages, Yourdictionary is also a language portal with more than 2,500 different dictionaries. Moreover, Users can also find grammars in over 300 languages. It has to be said that this incredible site is owned by LoveToKnow Corporation which is a company that also includes sites such as PublicBookshelf.com, Adviceopedia.org and FlexJobs.com.

But why is YourDictionary different from others dictionaries like Wordreference? There are several reasons. For instance, one aspect that makes it special is that it has many resources such as the Webster’s New World Dictionary, the American Heritage Dictionary or the Computer Desktop Encyclopedia. Furthermore, some of its resources are taken from wordbooks which are specialized in a certain domain or field. For example, there are some words from the field of law that do not appear in a regular lexicon, but with Yourdictionary the user can find these words thanks to the Webster’s New World Law Dictionary.

Another advantage is the possibility to use  Thesaurus which consists on a reference work that groups together different types of words that have similarity in meaning or that are connected. For example, imagine that you are looking for the word ball, you will find (apart from the definition) words like globe, balloon, baseball… This wordbook has more options than Thesaurus like sentence examples, acronyms, images, idioms, quote examples…You can see in the next image how Thesaurus works.

Moreover, the fact of being able to look up words that we do not know how they are spelled also makes a distinction between the other dictionaries.  Take as an example the word receive. Imagine that you do not know how it is spelled between the letter c to the letter v. The only thing you have to do is to write two question marks where you do not know how it is spelled. E.g : re c??ve( or an asterisk if yo do not really know the number of unknown letters)Finally, the dictionary also includes games for improving our language skills (crosswords, word definition games, anagram puzzles…) and forums to speak about languages or words.

In conclusion, it could be said that the dictionaries of this century are changing the concept of what we understand by dictionary.  We can look up words free, faster, have in the same portal grammars and dictionaries, games for improving our knowledge of the language,forums… Nowadays, there are not excuses for learning new languages. There are magnificent tools available for those ones willing to increase their knowledge of the world!

References

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WikiLeaks

Governments do not always show all the actions they are doing. There are some things that they do not want to share with the citizens of their countries and the rest of the world. It could be said that there is not transparency in our politicians. Take as an example, Guantánamo, nobody knows what is done there and how detainees are treated. However, there is an organization since 2006 that wants to break all that and is fighting against corruption. This organization is called WikiLeaks. His creator was Julian Assange, who is an Australian publisher  and journalist. The aim of this journalist is to open governments as it is said in Wikileaks’s slogan: “We open governments”

For instance, WikiLeaks is a non-profit organization, in other words, the journalists who work in this organization do not want money. They want to stop how our governments rule our countries. WikiLeaks believes in the Universal Declaration of Human rights which says that everybody has the right to speak freely and without interference of any type. They claim that journalists should be able to write about any topic without being afraid of being sent to prison or something worse. Publishing improves transparency and that is the only way to form a better society.

Wikleaks is compared to Daniel Ellsberg's leaking of the Pentagon Papers in 1971

WikiLeaks has been a success and has won many prizes since it was launched such as  the 2008 Economist Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression award or the 2009 Amnesty International human rights reporting award (New Media). Furthermore, it has broken many stories such as war, killing, torture, finace, taxes… However, the problem has appeared when its creator Julian Assagne was sent to prison due to sexual offences. Some people claim and Julian himself  that governments are politically motivated and want him in prison. There have been many riots in favor of  releasing Assange and this event is being one of the most trending topics of this time.

Many questions have still to be answered. Is  Assange a good person in favor of human rights or is he using the fact of being the creator of WikiLeaks to avoid prision? Are governments against transparency? The truth is that Wikileaks has put governments in an awkward position.

References:

Open Access

For instance, you have to know that scholars are not paid for the articles they publish in  scientific journals. The aim of those articles is to improve the field scholars are studying and show their new discoveries to the world. However, people sometimes do not read their articles because they are restricted to a particular section of society. How can this be changed in order to help improving the right for information of the society? The answer is Open Access.

Open access or (OA)  refers to unrestricted online access to articles published in scholarly journals. Open access breaks barriers and the limits of society. It has to be said that this system could not exist without the appearance of internet. Internet has given the key to society to being able to read a wide range of articles all over the world. Readers can do whatever they want with the articles copy, download, print… However, Open Access is different from open content where users can change the text they are reading.

Many people may think that Open Access is not good for authors. However, this is not true. Everybody will take advantage of Open Access. For instance, there have been many studies that show that articles who are published in open access journals are more cited and read than the rest of the books. Authors will be happy to know that their books are being read and that they are having more impact than if they have been published in a normal journal. Moreover, articles will be more effective because they will be more easy to find and use. Another part of the society that will take advantage of OA will be teachers that will feel safe that their students are using the convenient information to the research they will have to do.

What about quality?  There are some misunderstandings about Open Access. Some people claim that this are second-class papers and that they do not have enough quality. However, these articles are peer review, in other words, they are checked in order to know if they are good enough. Moreover, there will be more competition between scholars that will want their articles to be more cited and read than the ohters.

Finally, there are two ways to publish the articles through Internet. On the one hand, authors can publish their articles in Open Access Repositories which are digital collections of all the articles published by different authors. On the other hand, Open Access journals are also popular. They consist in  peer-reviewed journals whose articles may be accessed online without carge. Many institutions and universities are launching their own digital repositories to publish their articles to the whole public. There is a video in the references that shows very well the desire to improve OA by all the institutions. There also included in the references some interesting repositories where you can find good articles.

References:

Diferencia entre bibliotecas electrónicas, digitales y virtuales.

Numerosas son las cosas que están cambiando debido al desarrollo tecnológico. Una de ellas son las bibliotecas. Antes solo se conocía por biblioteca a un determinado edificio que guardaba diversos textos en formato de papel para que los usuarios pudieran leerlos y utilizarlos. Sin embargo, este concepto ha ido cambiando con el paso del tiempo.  Las bibliotecas han ido evolucionando para satisfacer a los usuarios que quieren una pronta respuesta a sus necesidades. Ahora se conocen tres tipos de diferentes de bibliotecas que difieren en sus características y en el modo que ofrecen sus servicios a los usuarios. Éstos tres tipos son: las bibliotecas electrónicas, digitales y virtuales.

En primer lugar, decir que en multitud de ocasiones se producen ambigüedades entre los términos y se suelen confundir. Aquí les definiremos y los compararemos con exactitud. El primer tipo de biblioteca se llama biblioteca electrónica. Las principales características  de estas bibliotecas es que se encuentran situadas geográficamente en un lugar, es decir, existe un edificio como tal donde se encuentran los libros. Los catálogos, libros y revistas de esta biblioteca están principalmente  en formato papel y cuenta con una serie de soportes electrónicos que les ayudan a los trabajadores y usuarios del lugar a encontrar rápidamente los libros que  buscan y la información deseada. Un ejemplo de biblioteca electrónica es la biblioteca de la Universidad de Deusto. Lopez Guzmán da una clara definición de lo que se entiende por biblioteca electrónica:

“Es aquella que cuenta con sistemas de automatización que le permite una ágil y correcta administración de los materiales que resguarda, principalmente en papel. Asi mismo, cuenta con sistemas de telecomunicaciones que le permiten acceder a su información, en formato electrónico, de manera remota o local. Proporciona  principalmente catálogos y listas de las colecciones que se encuentran físicamente en un edificio.” (Lopez Guzmán)

Por otro lado, existen también las bibliotecas digitales. Se suelen equivocar muchas veces con las virtuales. Sin embargo, mientras que las digitales tienen un edificio como tal donde los usuarios pueden acudir, las virtuales no lo tienen. Las digitales son bibliotecas donde hay soportes electrónicos mediante los cuales las personas pueden cosultar los documentos electrónicos deseados. En cambio las virtuales también disponen de sus documentos en formato electrónico, pero su utilización se hace a través de internet lo que permite que muchas personas tengan acceso a libros que anteriormente les sería imposible. La biblioteca virtual Miguel de Cervantes es un buen ejemplo de como de funcionar este tipo de bibliotecas.

Referencias:

Documento digital frente a documento tradicional.

Varias son las diferencias existentes entre el documento digital y el documento tradicional o clásico. Cada uno de ellos aporta una serie de ventajas e inconvenientes al lector. En las siguientes líneas intentaremos explicar las diferencias y características de ambos documentos. En primer lugar, ¿ Qué es un  documento? Se podría decir que es todo soporte en el que se recoge información y datos sobre un tema. Sin embargo, no todos los documentos son iguales y esto depende del soporte en el que se incluya la información.

Por un lado, tenemos los documentos digitales. Son todos aquellos que se producen en un entorno digital, su soporte y formato son electrónicos. Numerosas son las ventajas que presentan este tipo de documentos. Por ejemplo, tienen un carácter multimediático. No solo se lee el texto en el documento sino que este puede estar acompañado de imágenes, sonidos, vídeos…

Además, tienen un gran papel colectivo e interactivo en tanto que los distintos usuarios de la red pueden leer el mismo documento a la vez y hacer cambios en el mismo. Cabe decir que también permiten una gran movilidad ya que se pueden pasar de unos usuarios a otros en cuestión de segundos. Aunque también presentan grandes desventajas. Son muy volátiles y preservar los derechos de autor es muy difícil.

Por otro lado, nos encontramos con los documentos tradicionales como, por ejemplo, los libros.  Estos son más fáciles de preservar que los anteriores, pero no poseen ninguna de las ventajas de los digitales como puede ser: movilidad, adaptabilidad, accesibilidad… Asimismo, mientras que el los documentos clásicos se debe seguir el texto de forma lineal, el otro tipo de documento permite dar saltos en el texto e ir de unos documentos a otros lo que permite al lector tener una mayor comprensión del texto.

Por último, cuando queremos hacer  cambios en un documento tradicional tenemos que volver a cambiar el texto entero. Mientras que en el digital nos permite hacer solo los cambios pertinentes.

En conclusión, cada uno de ellos tiene sus cosas negativas y positivas es el lector quien tiene que elegir que opción le satisface mas. Aunque la diferencia entre ellos cada vez se está haciendo mas grande.

Referencias:

Twitter and hashtags.

Nowadays, we are in the century of information. People have more information than ever. While citizens get information, there is an important process that has to be done, which is called communication. The World Wide Web has change the way we communicate. Websites like Twitter or Facebook are becoming more and more important and they are helping in that sense of improving how human beings communicate. Around 500 million people use Facebook and 200 million people use Twitter. On the following lines, it will be explained the website Twitter and specifically, one of  important tools which is hashtags.

Twitter helps people from all over the world to communicate. It has many advantages, for example, you can use it wherever you are and at any time. Users in this site communicate by tweets which are the texts that one person send to the others. This texts or tweets can only have 140 characters. Twitter has been evolving since it was launched in 2006. One of its most important improvements has been hashtags. Hashtags are used by users among other things to create groups that discuss about the same topic. Moreover, this tool gives more metadata and context to the tweets.

Using hashtags is very simple. You only have to type the # symbol followed by the tag you are going to talk about in your  tweet.  This  will  redirect your tweet to the site where all the members of  Twitter are commenting  on that issue.Many times the hashtag you will type would have already been created by another member before. That is why it is recommended to investigate before the most important hashtags of the website.

Hashtag symbol

 Hashtags can be used to many things. For instance, Chris Messina, who is an important designer and advocate for the open web, was the first man that said that people could use tweets to co-ordinate actions when a natural disaster happened. This was done, for example, in Haiti’s disaster or San Diego’s one.  Other uses of hashtags are  to know which are the trending topics of the time (#Wikileaks) ,to express the intent of the post (#ironic) or keep track of an ongoing conversation. 

Nonprofiteers are specially rewarded with this system because they can discuss about different themes with everybody. Moreover, Users do not need to be signed in Twitter to follow the most trending topics. They can go to hashtag.org and follow there all the comments on the issue they are interested in. Finally, it has to be said that hashtags have to be used carefully and with good intentions, if not they become useless. Do not use them like spam and it is recommended to use the #CamelCase where the initials of the words are capitalized to the better understanding of the tags. Do not hesitate to follow the #rdf1011 hashtag where themes covering internet, information and digital resources are commented.

References:

Style Sheets: XSL and CSS

While you are writing an essay in the computer or doing a web page, there are many things that you have to consider. Not only the content of the text but also things such as the format,  style,  colourtype… All that kind of things that make your essays or web pages have a better quality. There are some mechanisms that help you to improve your works, they are called Style Sheets. So, in a few words, Style Sheets describes you how is going to be shown your document in the screen or paper. In the past, we only took into account the content but, nowadays, we are saying that the content of the text and how it is shown are equally important.

Normally, we have in a  page the text and in another different page the things relationated to the style thanks to this our work becomes easier. Style sheets help many people. On the one hand, it helps to those people who create web pages. However, on the other hand, it also helps to those users who work with programs such as Microsoft Word or Openoffice. Style sheets are an essential part for markup languages. They are relationated with documents that use HTML, XML or XHTML. The most importan style sheets are CSS that means Cascada Styling Sheets and XSL abbreviation for Entensible Stylesheet Language.

One kind of Style Sheet

XSL has become very popular because it offers many operations.Moreover, it is formed by three different languages: XSLT (that allows you to change a document from XML to HTML), XSL-FO ( here you can specify the visual formatting of an XML document) and XPath. But, you may be asking how style sheets work. They have two parts . The first part consists in saying to the mechanism which part of the text is going to be edited and finally, on the second part , you apply to the properties the values wanted.

Finally, just encourage you to continue exploring in this world because will help you to save time and your works will improve quite a lot.

References:


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