5 Best Ways to Use your Smartphone for Business

Times are changing, and trust me you, it is all happening for good!

For instance, I would like to point out at the revolution called “Smartphone”, which have had many incarnations from being a coiled, stuck-at-one-place gadget to something that carries the world with it (literally!).

I would say, Smartphone is the biggest boon to mankind.

Whether you are a college goer or a business person, you would smartphones have made your life easier in more than one way. Carrying laptops, logging onto PCs or cursing the slow bandwidth are now the things of the past.

With smartphones in everyone’s hands (Thanks! To them, being really affordable) information is at your finger tips.

If you are business person would be delighted to know that smartphone can do a lot many things, apart from being a phone and something to surf net on.

To prove my point I have listed 5 best ways to use your smartphone for business, choose one or all that catches your fancy.

1. Organiser

We all know how business is like, even if you have a dozen people working for you, you still are a one man army. One second you would be superivisng marketing campaigns and other minute you are juggling with finances.

Multitask-er becomes your middle name. Even if it is fun, I’m sure it is exhaustive as well.

So, the organizer tool on Smartphone comes to your rescue. Google Tasks, Remember the milk etc are few of free apps that you could download on your smartphone (iOs, Blackberry or Android) for free and leave all the to-dos worries to it. Hire it to never ever miss any critical task.

smartphone use business

2. Check your email on the Go!

Emails are modern day’s smses. It has become an important part of daily discussions and it doubles up as a record, if need be. “I will mail you once in office”, is oh-so-old!.

If you have a Smartphone with Internet access, you can check all your emails when you want & where you want. Not only it saves time, but it also ensures that you don’t miss out on any important mail.

Another feature is promptness of it, with a Smartphone in hand, you could continuously email back and forth to your prospects and close a deal much faster.

3. Access Social media with an ease

Facebook/ Twitter/ Instagram, if you ask me to name one social platform that is not accessible on a smartphone.

I would say NONE.

Many smartphones come with an access to all these social platforms and makes it easier for any business person to market themselves on these.

If you have a new product or some special deal going on, all you have to do it, open your smartphone, go to Facebook and put up your deal on it from your customers. All this in flat 5 mins! Isn’t it cool? Even editing a post is a cakewalk, thanks to the smartphones.

4. Access to various apps

There is a reason that “Smartphones” are so called. Be it iOs, Blackberry or Android, their app market is flooded with business apps. Some are for free and some are very economically priced.

From currency convertor to free messages app (Whatsapp) to free calls (Viber) to video conferencing (skype/Hangouts), these apps are not only answer to rising telecom prices but are also effective ways to communicate with more than one people at a time.

Meeting up with colleagues, reaching out your customers and keeping updated with changing market conditions has never been so easy.

5. To delight customer

Ultimately a happy customer is a repeat customer. if you are prompt in servicing your clients, they would be delighted and like the fact that they are being heard. With so many apps available on smartphone, you could do everything to keep your customers engaged.

Drafting email, making a presentation, broadcasting a super deal and updating your website was never so easy. And, now that you have it at your finger tips make it a point to use it wisely. There is no room from clumsiness and less than perfect customer service.

Thanks to changing technology, keeping up with competition is much easier. If you use your smart-phone – smartly, your drudgery would be halved.

Web Development Basics

If you are an aspiring web developer, you need to learn the web development basics. The solid foundation will help you a long way in the area of web development.

The basics of web development

In order to become a good web developer, you need to learn following terminologies first. These are the pillars of web development.

HTML

The HTML is a very basic term that you will come across in the field of web development. What does HTML stand for? The full form of HTML is Hyper Text Markup Language. HTML is the scripting language that is used to construct the web.

The latest version of HTML at the time of writing this article is HTML5. The main focus of HTML5 is on meeting the needs of web developers and also on resolving the issues found in previous versions of HTML.

CSS

CSS is another basic stuff used by all websites. CSS is the short form of Cascading Style Sheets. The CSS is used to describe layout, font color font face, size etc of the website.

Basically the design elements of a website are described in a CSS file and placed on the web server.

Web host

A web host allows your website to be accessible via world wide web. A web host is a company that provides you space on a server where you can put your HTML and/or script files, CSS files, images etc.

Basically all the elements that comprise of the website are placed on web host.

Content management systems

Most of the websites now use content management systems or CMS. What is a CMS? A CMS is a ready made software package that you can install on your web host, do a little customization if you want and you are good to go. CMS allows you to manage and add content easily.

Even the users who are not so tech savvy can easily add content to the website without the need to know any technical stuff. As the name suggests, CMS makes it easy to manage the content.

Cross browser compatibility

While developing the website, you should always keep in mind that there are several web browsers out there.

Everyone will not be using the same web browser that you are using. So better design a website that is compatible with all leading web browsers. Also don’t forget to test it on leading web browsers to see how it looks on those browsers.

SEO

Search engine optimization or SEO is something that every web developer should understand. The website you develop must be designed in such a way that it is optimized for search engines.

Yes, the structure of the website should be designed in such a way that it’s SEO friendly. It starts right from the design phase. Then only you would be able to acheive the right search engine optimized website.

There are several free resources online, such as w3schools that you can use to learn the basics of web development, HTML, CSS and other web development related terms that you need to know.

Introduction to Software for Newbies

A computer consists of two basic components, Hardware and Software. Hardware is all what we can touch and feel such as keyboard, mouse, monitor, hard disk etc.

Whereas a Software includes all the parts which we cannot touch or see such as Microsoft word, Outlook, operating systems, pictures, music and lot more.

In more technical terms, a software is a set of programs or instructions which actually run the hardware and makes it performs specific tasks.

Think of computer as a human body, then your brain is a hardware but your mind or your thoughts are actually the software which make the brain work and thus all the parts of the body. Without brain, no thoughts would be generated, and without thoughts, brain is lifeless.

Similarly hardware and software are inter related and do not exist without each other.

software
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Types of Software

Software is often divided into three different categories:

System Software

It is a type of software designed to operate, manage as well as control the computer hardware, to provide basic functionality, and to provide a platform for running application software. System software includes device drivers, operating systems, servers, utilities, and window systems.

Utility Software

This type of software will help you to maintain as well as protect your PC. However, it will not directly interact with hardware of your PC. For example, anti-virus software, firewalls, disk defragmenters etc.

Application software

This software is used to accomplish specific tasks other than just running the PC. Application software may consist of a single program or a small collection of programs (often called a software package) that work closely together to accomplish a task, such as a spreadsheet or text processing system.

It can also be a larger collection (often called a software suite) of related but independent programs and packages that have a common user interface or shared data format, such as Microsoft Office, which consists of closely integrated word processor, spreadsheet, database, etc.

A software system, such as a database management system, is a collection of fundamental programs that may provide some service to a variety of other independent applications.

How is a software made?

A software is made by understanding what the computer needs to do for people, which is called requirements gathering, where many people are interviewed in an effort to determine what are their expectations and needs.

Then software designers describe and define the programs to accomplish what the computer must do, in a process called software architecture. Programmers write the programs and testers test it to make sure it does what it’s supposed to do. A software is mainly made up of following components:

Graphical User Interface
It is the part through which the user interacts with the software to perform tasks.

Mouse/keyboard event handling
This determines what happens if the user clicks on a button provided at the user interface.

Application logic
This defines how the software works.

Communication logic
If the software is a client-server program (e.g. an Internet browser), this part takes care of how the software communicate with the server.

Database logic
If customer records need to be stored in a database, this part determines how the software retrieves the record of a particular customer.

A software may be created by a single person or a group of persons called programmers. Breaking up a piece of software into many components helps the programmers in various ways.

One programmer may be in charge of creating the user interface while another is in charge of the application logic. So if many programmers are working on the software concurrently, it will take less time than only one programmer working on it.

How to Become a Software Engineer

Here in this article, I have explained in full detail how you can become a software engineer or software developer.

When it comes to salary, lifestyle and liberty of working, no one is envied more than IT people. It is true that nothing in this world has been untouched by IT revolution. In return, IT industry has created jobs and desirable lifestyles for many.

Qualities of Software Engineers

Software development is an important aspect of IT and hence it hardly sees any dearth of jobs. On the contrary, the crop of people who wish to join software development is growing greater every passing day.

But, being a software developer is no easy task.

With intense competition, merely possessing an engineering degree or diploma is just not enough. Every company is looking forward to hire someone who is not “just a software developer”, they seek much more!

What exactly is this “much more” and what can be done to achieve it?

Qualities of a good software developer can vary from company to company, but basic qualities that any employer would look in you as a software engineer are listed below:

how to become software Engineer

Communication and Presentation Skills

Gone are the days when software developers were perceived as geeks, ones with big spectacles, hidden behind books and computer.

software engineer
Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It has not being very long since they have broken the mold and came out of the stereotype.

Today they are required to take lead, represent the company and communicate with the client. This communication is not only for business sake but also for the client to understand their requirements effectively and to explain them the technical details.

So, good communication skills are must for a good software developer.

Willing to Constantly Upgrade Yourself with Newer Skills & Technology

With rapidly changing technology, keeping up with it is a mammoth task. But a good software developer has to do it in order to keep himself indispensable.

You could enroll yourself in some on job training classes or learn online, but keep up with equal pace.

Redundancy is higher in people who refuse to upgrade themselves to newest technical know-how or take a lot of time to change accordingly. A good software developer would constantly be in touch with industry changes and upgrade himself accordingly.

Problem Solving Skills

Software development is all about problem solving. To say, everything that makes & evolves software is a problem, is not an exaggeration.

Software developers are supposed to understand and solve these problem everyday with equal passion. And they also have to find to do things in a easier and faster way.

So, for a good software developer problem solving is part and parcel of his daily job and he should possess exceptional skills to prove he is ahead of many.

Teamwork and Leadership Skills

Software development is huge process. Many restrict it to “writing codes”. But reality is, right from when the product is conceptualized, till it is a finished product, everything is part of software development.

In this huge process, a software developer is required to work in a team of people of various departments as well as take leads at appropriate times.

While it may take sometime to develop leadership skills and get a leader role, teamwork is very important skill that every software engineer must have.

Be Passionate About Coding

This is the most important skill that a good software developer should possess – being passionate about coding. A code is a backbone of all software and it is only easy when it sounds.

In actuality, it is one number crunching, mind numbing and dull process which can give any a serious headache.

But a good software developer would make this numbing process a part of his life and do it with all sincerity and passion.

Design Models in Software Development Life Cycle

Software development life cycle involves many design models; Waterfall Model, V-shaped model, spiral model and Incremental model are the three main types of SDLC models which are popularly used. RAD (Rapid Application Development) and Prototype Models are also part of SDLC process.

Waterfall model

One can only use Waterfall model if the requirements are already known to the developer, unless it is useless. It follows same steps including Requirement, Design, Coding, Testing, Implementation and Maintenance. Before proceeding towards next step, it is necessary to complete the previous phase properly. It is fast and easy to use model.

V-shaped

This model is similar to Waterfall model except that the main importance is given to the testing phase in this model and all the phases are implemented in sequential manner only. System plan is made before starting the development phase and instead of focusing on writing the code, testing methods are decided first.

Incremental method

Also known as iterative method focuses mainly on the larger portion of the software and focus on decorative parts afterwards. The idea behind this model is that due to completion of important and bigger part first, the probability of having errors and bugs will be reduced.

Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC)

Software development life cycle is a structural representation in which a particular software product development is based.

SDLC involved various models in which method of forming a product is same but the technicalities are different.

Software development process mainly consists of various steps and this life cycle depicts what tasks are performed in which step.

Every software development organization follows models inspired by SDLC process and on the basis of this procedure only they maintain, implement and secure the product.

Stages in Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC)

There are five main steps in SDLC process:

  1. Planning
  2. Design
  3. Implementation
  4. Testing
  5. Documentation
  6. Deployment and Maintenance

Planning

For the development of any product, in this case software, foremost step is to have a proper planning.

Every organization has a specific department which is responsible for collecting all the requirements and analyses what is needed.

Requirements of the software are based on what kind of software is desired by the client and further research is being made on the basis of that information.

Once the requirement gathering step is completed, a document or report is generated in which the mission and vision of the software is mentioned. Feasibility study of the project is also done in this step of process.

Design

Requirement gathering step is followed by designing of the product. In this step, analysis is prepared and features regarding design of the product are made in which screen layouts, diagrams, graphical representation and pseudo code is prepared. Domain modelling is also done in this step only.

Implementation

According to the design of the product, next step of the SDLC method is to execute points and start writing code for the software. Senior level coders work in team to produce optimal code.

Testing

Once the code is prepared, it is tested by specific department to check whether it is running properly or not. Bugs and errors are checked in this step. Testing is very crucial and essential part of any software development procedure as company is required to produce product as desired by the client.

Documentation

Keeping records of every step is important so that when required again this procedure can be used. By the time, every software gets updated and improved thus for future reference documentation is essential. API (Application Programming Interface) is a part of documentation that mainly includes having records of designs for the software product.

Deployment and Maintenance

After the approval of the software to release its final output, next step involves deployment.

The process of deployment consists of installation of the software, customization of various parameters, testing and setting the period of evaluation for extended time what so ever.

Software can be faulty any day, thus it is required to have proper and regular maintenance plan for it. The utmost requirement of the client is that the software hence produced is compatible with every system and for that many things are upgraded in it.

Maintenance involves adding, upgrading and analyzing the software at regular intervals so that it can be used at larger scale.

Android: Top 10 Facts about Android That You Should Know

Smartphones, Tablets, Notebooks – today market is flooded with gadgets. Though they add to variety, people are going berserk deciding which one to buy and which one is better than other.

Even if you decide about the brand, you might still want to read up about the latest operating system on which the model is based on.

Technically speaking, Android is not new but it has captured the market in like no time. Android is an operating system that is based on linux and has been specifically designed to run on devices like mobile phones and tablets.

Google had initially funded and finally purchased android in year 2005. Statistically speaking, in over 5 billion mobile phones users in the world almost 1.08 billion use Android. What sets apart Android from its competitors is the huge variety of applications, provision of upgrading it time to time and the fact that it has enviable speed which is very much required if you are a game lover.

Top 10 facts about android

If you refer dictionary, you would find Android actually means an automated human or human that exhibits automation.

Android Incorporation was founded last trimester of year 2003 at California. Andy Robin, Rich Miner, Chris White, Nick Sears are founders of Android and have contributed in various forms towards its development and distribution.

Android, since 2003 has undergone a number of technical upgrades and is now in direct competition with the likes of Apple, Windows, Symbian etc.

Top 10 facts about Android are listed below:

Here are 10 facts about Android operating system:

1. Android is open source
Many of us must be clueless about what is this open source and how is it so beneficial that it deserves a mention in Android’s top facts.

To put it simpler words, in case of open source software, anyone can have an access to its source code, they can change it and create newer versions and distribute to others.

2. Android and ABC:
Even if it feel like a coincidence, but one interesting fact about Android is that somehow all the versions of this OS have a sequence to it. A-Alpha, B-Beta version, C-Cup cake version, D-Donut version, E-Eclair version and so on.

And, probably the Android developers have also “developed a sweet tooth” as all the version keep referring to something that has a sweet taste.

3. How did Android phone came into existence
If you think that Android developers had always planned to come up with an android phone or something similar, you are grossly wrong.

The initial intention of the company was to to develop an advanced operating system for digital cameras, for which they figured out the market is not as large as they wanted it to be.

So, they then diverted their energies to come up with OS for phone which would be in direct competition with Symbian and windows phone. Did you just Thanked God for it ?

4. Android and Apps
Whether want to know weather forecast or you want to check how many calories your cupcake has; there is probably an app for each of the Android phone. Android users can enjoy access over 48 billion apps and almost half of them are free to download. With around 20,000 apps developed monthly, Android is the closest competitor to iOS.

5. Android had a Shaky start:
Not many people are aware of the fact that Android had a very shaky start in smartphone business. Their very first Android phone was not well received.

Even though, the operating system was appreciated, the critics had issues with its designing. Also, Android collaboration with Blackberry to come out with a Blackberry Playbook was an unsuccessful attempt.

6. Other companies can come out with Android phones
Unlike Blackberry and Apple which strictly confine themselves and restrict others to replicate their operating systems. The open source of Android allows companies like HTC/Samsung/Motorola to customise it and use it for their own branded devices. They can add their own features and change the layout at their will.

7. Market share & Android
Android has captured almost 80 percent of the market share!

8. Programming Languages used by Android
C, C++ and Java are the main languages on which Android is based. While C is used as its core language, the software developers behind Android use Java for its user interface.

9. Android Logo
The green human like robot logo of Android is supposedly based on the game called “Gauntlet- The third encounter”.

10. Google And Android
When Google financially backed Android and then moved onto buy the whole company, it was speculated that Google is going to launch its own phones, with Android as its operating system. But for now, Google has marketed the platform to companies which manufactures handsets and has lined up various components related to software or hardware in order to extend cooperation to such companies.