Tag Archives: technology

Should You Major In Liberal Arts Or STEM?

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Should You Major In Liberal Arts Or STEM?

There was a time, perhaps a couple of decades ago, where the liberal arts – a.k.a. the humanities, dealing with the study of literature, history, philosophy, art, and the like – and STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) worked together in harmony. These days, there seems to be a major divide between the two when it comes to college. At least, that’s what a lot of commentators and even politicians believe.

Back in 2014, Barack Obama called into question the usefulness of a liberal arts degree. He caught quite a bit of heat for suggesting that a degree in art history may not provide you with the job opportunities that an education in trade and manufacturing will. Oddly enough, this actually put him on common ground with the Republicans, who have long questioned the usefulness of degrees such as literature and anthropology!

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He didn’t always please the liberals!

But how right are the critics of an education in liberal arts? Before people even get an opportunity to ask “How do you get a bachelor’s degree?”, they seem to be hounded by such a question. If you feel a bit torn and confused about the whole thing, here are a few points that you should keep in mind:

Manufacturing and Trade Aren’t Dead: So many people out there seem to think that we’ve moved past the need to have so many students doing STEM subjects because there isn’t much career potential in manufacturing and trade. Here’s the thing: Obama wasn’t actually so much criticizing liberal arts as he was criticizing this idea. The fact is, that these are still essential fields in our economies, and fulfilling and lucrative careers are still common in those fields. Don’t dismiss manufacturing and trade as dead fields because they are very much alive and kicking if you know where to look.

Liberal Arts Education Isn’t Just “Training for Starbucks”: An education in the humanities does not doom you to a dead-end job, the way that a lot of people tend to dismiss it. Having said that, there are certainly courses out there that are so steeped in postmodernist denials of reality or objective truth and so much closer to ideological indoctrination rather than education that job prospects after graduation are genuinely lackluster.

But, a degree in philosophy has been shown to get people into well-salaried positions. In fact, the average philosophy major earns more than the average accounting major. As for an English degree, so often mocked by humanities haters, it’s a massive boost for many careers due to the degree showing your ability to read and analyze deeply. Talent in theory and criticism is more useful in business and technology fields than you may think!

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Starbucks & studies!

And Remember: while Bill Gates has dismissed liberal arts degrees, Steve Jobs has pointed out that his company would never work it if hadn’t been a perfect marriage of STEM and liberal arts.

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Take that, Bill Gates!

Remember Part 2: the value of a degree is both overestimated and underrated – it’s the former in a more general sense, but the latter when you take into account oft-disparaged subjects such as those you’ll find in the humanities. At the end of the day, higher education isn’t pointless, nor is it a waste of time – as long as you pursue your education with purpose, you’ll get something out of it.

Featured Image By: Wikimedia

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College Kid Essentials

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College Kid Essentials

Whether you are packing up your cases for your first semester or your last one, there are some things that you just can’t do without when you head off to college. Some of these are practical, some are fun, and some are downright luxurious, but all are simply essential. Read on to find out what they are and then get back to studying:

A Decent Bag: One of the major rules of college is that you will spend half of your time lugging your laptop and a boat load of big thick textbooks around with you. That is why you need a bag like a sturdy backpack for heavy books and all of your lecture notes. If you think that you are going to be able to work it out Legally Blonde style with a trendy backpack, then you are just setting yourself up for a world of pain. I’m not saying don’t take a cute handbag or two (or ten), because you can always use them on your nights out. Just make sure that you have something a bit more sensible for the day time when you’re hauling all of your homework.

Shower Shoes: Okay, things are going to get a little gross here, but that’s what a dormitory bathroom is! Sharing bathrooms and showers is a hazard in college that most people cannot avoid. Yes, dodging dirty underwear left in there by mistake just might happen. But you just don’t know who has walked on the floor in their bare feet. That is why it is a genius idea to take some thongs with you to wear in the bathroom! Not today, athlete’s foot. Not today.

A Frying Pan: Did you know that you can pretty much cook all meals in a frying pan? Get one deep enough like a wok, and you can boil vegetables and make sauces in it, too. In fact, it’s the most useful piece of kitchen equipment that you should have apart from a tin opener and corkscrew! So make sure to pack yours when you head back for the first day of term.

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Pexels Image

Your Laptop: Obviously, the only time that you hand write anything at college these days is in exams, the rest of the time you will want to be taking notes and writing up your essays on your computer. For security and portability reasons it’s best to invest in a laptop. Then, you can take it home during the holidays as well as along to lectures. It really is the college essential that you can’t do without.

Pictures From Home: Obviously, you’ll have pics of your family on your phone and computer. But, it is always nice to have paper copies, as well. Get some prints of your favorite images done, so when homesickness hits, you can glance over and remember that you’ll be back with them soon. You can display them in a frame or with mini pegs on a string for a cute boho look.

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^^^ Kind of like this!

A Scented Candle: Lastly, just because you are a student does not mean that you can’t have a little luxury in your life. Why not treat yourself to a nice scented candle. Not only will this relax you when you have a test or a deadline to study for, but it will also stop you from having to smell the scents of everyone else’s cooking in your accommodation. Which can be a total godsend!

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And don’t forget coffee or tea for binge studying sessions!

Technology To Keep You On Track

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When it comes to health and fitness we could all use a helping hand. Whether it’s counting calories or charting our progress, it can be difficult to keep on top of things when we’re trying to get in shape. Increasingly, the worlds of technology and fitness have been overlapping. Here’s how you could be using some clever tech to get fit just in time for summer:

Healthy Eating: There are plenty of tech gadgets that make eating healthily easier. Apps are particularly popular for those looking to lose weight. We’re told a lot about the importance of keeping a food diary and holding ourselves accountable. This is good advice but can be so difficult (and annoying!) in practice. When we cook at home or eat out it’s difficult to track our calorie and sugar intake. Not only that, but it’s a lot of work to carry around a food diary and fill it in every day.

Certain apps allow users to check their intake easily. These apps are pre-programmed with nutritional information from thousands of restaurants and recipes. Not only can you keep track of your calories, but these apps can also tell you how far away from your goal you are. They can even work out the right amount of calories you should be eating, based on your BMI. Some apps also have features which allow you to input your workout and see how many calories you’ve burned. So handy!

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YUM!!

Quitting Your Bad Habit: It’s no surprise that people looking to increase their overall health and fitness try and cut back on any bad habits. Whether your indulgence is chocolate, alcohol, or cigarettes, it’s best to try and curb these less than healthy habits for good. The world of technology came up with vapes and e-cigarettes as an alternative aid for those looking to quit smoking. Vapes and e-cigarettes require liquid and chargers, like the ones found at Vaporesence. This aid to stopping smoking is usually used as a first step on the road to cutting down or cutting out cigarettes altogether for an ultimately healthier lifestyle.

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Pixabay Image

Lumo: Lumo is at the forefront of some pretty impressive fitness tech. Lumo Run, for instance, is a sensor that you clip onto your running shorts. The device links up to an app on your phone and gives you a post-run analysis. Along with the usual details, Lumo Run can advise you about your running form and even recommend specific personalized exercises. It measures your pelvic drop, rotation, bounce, and braking to come up with feedback on how to improve your technique for a better work out.

Lumo Lift, on the other hand, is all about great posture. Again, you attach a clip to your shirt and it will gently vibrate when you slouch or have bad posture. It can track your posture, calories burned, steps, and distances too. So get those shoulders back, but if not, let Lumo remind you! Now, straighten up!

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Go, go, go!

Careers For The Tech Savvy Person

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Careers For The Tech Savvy Person

It’s 2017, and our world is now pretty much exclusively dominated by technology. If you roll back the years, some of the advancements we now have would have seemed very far fetched to people back then – just look at the size of cell phones twenty years ago to how they are now! But, one thing is clear, and that is that technology is always developing. This is partially what makes it so exciting, as it is only going to get better from here. With this in mind, it’s little wonder why so many people choose to work in the technology sector. It is worth billions globally, and if you can get your foot in the door, a job in tech can be both rewarding and secure. Here are just a few examples of technology-based careers so that you can be part of this century’s most exciting revolution:

IT Support: If you’ve ever worked for a business before, you will know that the IT department is exclusive to the company’s day to day efficiency. As advanced as computers are these days, some things are bound to go wrong from time to time, and most people with office based roles don’t always have the skills needed to resolve these issues quickly. This is where IT support staff comes in, as it will be their job to get things back up and running so the day can carry on as normal. IT support staff fills some different roles. For example, you could be a computer networking specialist by trade, so you can be responsible for getting a whole company’s system up and running again after it’s gone down. This type of help is invaluable in a business, so whether you are in-house or agency based, you can guarantee that you’ll never be out of work in a job like this.

Web Designer: Do you like problem-solving and working independently? If so, a job as a web developer could be the ideal career for you. Web developers work predominantly with code, which you may have heard of before. It comes in two forms: HTML and CSS, and to most people looks like a bit of a foreign language! However, it is actually simply the code on which websites are built. It can take a while to learn, but if you love precision and are a naturally focused person, a role as a web developer could suit you to the T.

App Designer: Since cell phones became the highly developed devices we know them as today, it can sometimes seem that there is no limit to what they can do. Every smartphone now comes with the option to download apps onto it for a variety of different reasons: organization, entertainment, business…there is literally an app for anything these days! Apps are complex pieces of software that require a skilled technician to build them and integrate them for mobile use. By becoming an app developer, you can work with some really exciting brands and help them bring their visions to life right on your phone screen!

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Is it just me, or is photos spelled wrong?!

Featured Image By: Jisc

My Unhealthy Obsession With Social Media!? Likes & Dislikes

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My Unhealthy Obsession With Social Media!? Likes & Dislikes
Hi everyone and happy Monday! I hope all of you are having a wonderful start to your week and are not suffering from the Monday blahs too much! If there’s one thing that’s important to me, it’s featuring guest bloggers on my page. I want lifewithlilred to be a place for everyone. Whether it be via random articles or a full on guest bloggers series, if someone feels so inclined to want to be on my page, who am I to deny them that?
The article below is written by a young lady who’s new to the blogging world, Janicia. Please be sure to check out her page and give it some love and encouragement because even the most experienced bloggers were new once, too!

My Unhealthy Obsession With Social Media!? Likes & Dislikes

There is this constant battle and argument on whether social media has enhanced our lives or totally hindered our mental state. The question is. Where do you stand? Are you that person who is constantly switched on to the latest celebrity gossip and social media trends? Or are you someone that has the capability to put their phone down without having FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)? Unfortunately, I fall under the FOMO side of things!
The unfortunate truth is that social media isn’t all glitz and glam. The divide between reality and fiction is often blurred. There is another universe within our devises which exists and it’s kind of scary! We’ve been given an illusion, a distorted vision of what is true and what is false. Why is it, that we always chose to follow people who portray a perfect life? Is it because we’re envious or is it a form of encouragement? Perhaps they are just GOALS. As soon as we come across an attractive picture or person, the first thing we do is stalk their page and one hour later we’ve traveled ten accounts too deep! Are you lost? Or do you follow my gist? It gets to a point where you’ve pretty much found your future husband, met your in-laws, his relatives, and his two best friends John and Matthew! We’ve all been, there, right? Right? (I totes have…multiple times! -Sarah)
There comes a point, after having seen so many pictures of perfection on various profiles, that we begin to analyze our own lives and current situations. “How did they acquire all this success”, we ask. “She looks amazing! I wonder how much it would cost to get that body sculpture”. Don’t tell me you haven’t thought about it! It is a new phenomenon in our society, especially in the entertainment industry, where women are paying for the perfect body. If you had the money, time, and energy to do so, wouldn’t you do it too?
That said, social media has narrowed the borders of our vast world significantly. You’re now able to connect with people all over the world who have similar interests as yourself, which is fantastic! All you do is click follow and you are friends…well, virtual friends! You now have access to private and intimate images and videos of people you would never have seen otherwise. If you are an entrepreneur, you have direct contact and access to your target audience by sending out tweets, Instagram pics, and Facebook posts to the world at no cost of your own. The uses of social media are endless, it is how you exploit it that will either hinder or better your agenda.
I, like most, will continue to spend 50% of my day glued to my phone, computer screen, or tablet while surfing on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and my favorite: Google! The struggle continues and hopefully one day we (and I!) can find a healthy balance. A happy medium that gives us the opportunity to spend a lot more time away from our screens and more time living and enjoying our actual lives!

^^^ Thank you so much to Janicia for her insightful and humorous guest post! Who suffers from FOMO without being glued to their smart phone? How has social media impacted your life? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Interested in guest blogging for lifewithlilred? Shoot me an email at: sarah.mush6794@gmail.com! ❤

How Randomness Can Add Creativity To Your Photography

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In many ways, the high technology of the modern world spoils us, especially when it comes to photography. Thanks to computers and Photoshop, there is more scope than ever before to be creative and to be expressive in photos. There are all sorts of techniques that can be used and many of them can help to make your work look more artistic and creative. Here are some fun camera hacks to help you add randomness and creativity to your work:

Move The Camera: Most professional photography courses emphasize the importance of keeping the camera as still as possible. The reason for this is to preserve things like lines and sharp edges and to prevent the photo from looking blurred. But sometimes you actually want to blur to convey a sense of motion to the image you’re snapping.

There are several popular ways of using the motion of the camera to take a better shot. “Panning”, for example, is a technique used most frequently in sports when following a target, like a horse, from one side of the field of view to the other. Another technique is “rotation” where the camera takes a photograph mid-whirls. Finally, there is camera throwing, where you literally throw the camera to take the shot. (With this one, you might want to prepare an area where the camera can land softly!).

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The camera was not thrown for this picture!

Creative Focusing: You don’t need a full-blown DSLR to play around with focus. Some of the best bridge cameras in 2017 also come with options that allow users to focus either slightly in front or slightly behind the subject. The purpose of doing this is usually to pick out some other element of the photograph to focus on, leaving the rest of the image blurred. With the right foreground and background colors, this sort of technique can create intrigue and mystery.

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I’m intrigued 😉

Zoom & Shoot: Another way to use your camera is to zoom in while you shoot. This has the effect of making the outer edge of the image blurred while keeping the subject in the center in focus. Zooming while shooting makes it appear as if the whole image is sort of popping out at you. It’s also possible to combine zoom with a slow sync flash, which can produce some pretty spectacular results.

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Flickr Image

Shoot From Below: Top professional photographers have been using low-angle shots for decades to evoke a sense of scale. It turns out that the technique is extremely useful. Even regular sized objects take on whole new personalities when shot from below. What’s more, shooting from below is interesting for viewers. In our daily lives, we rarely see things from a mouse-eye view, and so when we do, it’s engaging if nothing else.

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Holy moly!

Use Over Exposure: Another thing photography school warns about is overexposing your shots. But doing it in the right setting, especially when an image contains dazzling colors, can be really effective. If you bump up the exposure setting on your camera, sometimes you can generate beautiful effects with foreground objects contrasting nicely with the burnt out background of the scene.

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Pretty!

Whether your passion lies in front of or behind the camera, learning the proper techniques can only benefit you in your line of work!

Homeowner’s Hit List: What Upgrades Should You Make To Your Property This Year?

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Homeowner’s Hit List: What Upgrades Should You Make To Your Property This Year?

Home is where the heart is and every homeowner will be looking for ways to bolster their properties over the coming months. And let’s face it, there are usually two factors that we demand from any upgrade project. Firstly, we want the work to improve our lives. Secondly, we want those improvements to add financial value, too. If your next home upgrade project can achieve both of those things, it’s probably a wise choice. Still struggling for inspiration? Here’s all you need to know:

Give Every Room A Purpose: There’s no greater mistake than letting a room go to waste. You’ve paid good money for your property and you should be eager to make every last inch matter. A decluttering session will certainly add the perception of more space, but nothing will beat repurposing a dormant room. The most likely candidates will be the guest bedroom or the garage. Whether you turn it into a man cave, a she shed, or a second living space doesn’t matter. Giving the space a purpose will surely be better than letting it collect dust. Alternatively, you could look into converting the attic space into a home office. It might cost a little time and money to complete the transformation, but your property value will increase dramatically.

Add Modern Tech: You don’t necessarily need to transform an entire room to breathe new life into the property. Technology and home gadgets have completely transformed the way we interact with our properties. Leaving yours in the past could be reducing your enjoyment and may limit the resale value, too.

First and foremost, you should prioritize the essential comforts of a modern home. A suitable HVAC system, high-pressure shower, and washing machines can all have a telling impact on your daily life. Home audio visual solutions can upgrade the way you interact with the property as a family as well as on an individual basis. Let’s face it; most homeowners will desire that type of advanced tech, too. Having it in place now will make the home more attractive.

Finally, there’s no greater feeling than safety. Investing in home surveillance and other tech-based security could work wonders. In addition to increasing home value, it could reduce your insurance premiums also.

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The bat cave!

Go Green: If your next project can improve your life as well as your finances, then that’s great. But if it can additionally reduce your damage to the environment, then it surely has to be a winning solution. Greener living doesn’t mean you have to become a hippie. It doesn’t even mean that you need to make huge investments like roof solar panels. Small upgrades like eco-friendly toilets and new windows will work wonders for energy bills and emissions. On top of that, you should see the value of your property gain a serious boost.

In the meantime, LED light bulbs and eco-friendly cleaning materials can make a noticeable impact. If nothing else, it will provide another incentive to follow through with those slightly larger planned upgrades.

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Go green!

Featured Image By: Google