Apr 28

What is the Cloud?

Posted in News

The Cloud” is something that is becoming ubiquitous in our lives. Businesses are moving to cloud-based computing to save costs while individuals are using the cloud to sync data across their devices. Most people will just acknowledge the cloud and go about their business. Where is this cloud? Why are people using it?

What Exactly Does This Nebulous Term Mean?

Think about this the way you think about the internet. The internet is a network of servers. We refer to the collection of information as “the internet”, but it isn’t something you can go out and see. A description of what the cloud is may sound pretty similar. The cloud is a network of servers that are designated for either file hosting or providing a service. Physically and abstractly, the cloud is the same thing that we already know as the internet. Servers are networked and the information that flows is what we refer to, not the physical thing itself.

A Brief History of Time (Sharing)

In the days before computers were household appliances, they were very large and expensive machines. As large as they were, they couldn’t really be used for more than one task at a time. To balance the needs of multiple users, the idea of “time sharing” was implemented: Users literally shared the computer in shifts so that they could all have access to the power of computing. This sharing of resources is the core concept of “cloud computing.” Now that there is sufficient bandwidth through the internet, a server farm can provide file hosting and services to many users as they need.

What’s So Good about the Cloud?

The traditional way of using applications was that: a user would download software, and then run that software on the computer in front of them, or on a local server. The cloud is a way to cut out part of the process. The user can now access those same kinds of applications through the internet without necessarily having to download and use it for their selves.

This begins to make a lot of sense for business. Instead of having to invest heavily in on-site servers and the maintenance require to keep them running, there is now the option to meet the same needs by using the cloud. This also helps businesses avoid the eventuality of their costly equipment depreciating. Instead of paying for the upkeep and overhead of a depreciating system, business can now pay only for the service it needs. The business can scale its services, and therefore its costs, to any level that the company needs. This means being able to avoid paying for unused potential, as well as the ability to increase their services when it is needed.

The most worrisome aspect of the cloud for some people is the security of files hosted on it. Remember that “data” can be personal information or any manner of private files. For those who share the concern of privacy, make sure to check into the encryption of the cloud’s file hosting.

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Apr 25

Remote Backup

Posted in News

Remote backup services are a file hosting solution for people who want a backup of their data that will not be susceptible to destruction if a natural disaster or personal calamity destroys their primary personal storage. A fire, flood, or other circumstances beyond a person’s control can render home or commercial computers unable to use. In the case that some form of catastrophe or mechanical failure leaves a user without the ability to access their primary source of stored data, remote file hosting can mitigate the depth of a loss by providing a place where important and useful data can be stored and retrieved off-site.

The following are a few of the most popular file hosting sites that users choose to back-up their files.

Carbonite

Carbonite is a widely popular choice in offsite backup. It is not a good choice for local backups, but it excels at online backups. Carbonite can be configured to automatically backup email, music, documents, and other files. Videos can also be backed up, but must be done manually. A drawing feature is the fact that files stored with Carbonite are available to the user via smartphone. All of Carbonite’s plans offer unlimited storage and encrypt all of your data stored off-site.

Carbonite offers a 15 day free trial. After the trial, costs are based on the level of the subscription and the number of computers covered. Per one computer, the plans cost $60, $100, and $150 per year for the Home, Home Plus, and Home Premium plans.

Backblaze

Many praise the Backblaze file hosting service for its ease of use. Backblaze is designed for people who just want to back-up their data, especially those that don’t have the ability or patience to chase down error codes or decrypt vague status messages whenever a problem is encountered. The idea is for Backblaze to be easy and fast while being hands-off. This means that almost everything is backed up. There is a little bit of control, but for the most part, it backs up everything (documents, music, and video) on your computer and connected external drives. Like other services, Backblaze runs in the background to constantly backup data. By default, Backblaze only backs up files less than 4GB, but that can be changed if you need to.

Another great feature of Baclblaze is the pricing of its services. For five dollars a month, Backblaze offers unlimited backup storage. Additional computers can also be added to the plan for an additional five dollars a month. Pricing is slightly less when subscribing for one or two years in advance.

CrashPlan

CrashPlan is an extremely flexible choice to backup selected folders or drives on your computer.. This option can do local backups to external drives, other computes on the same network, or even to a selected computer across the internet. Of course, you can choose to use the file hosting service on CrashPlan’s servers, as well.

CrashPlan is free to use for local backups, and CrashPlan+ accounts start at two dollars a month per computer for 10GB of online backup, or four dollars a month per computer for unlimited storage. At nine dollars a month, unlimited online backups are available for a whole household.

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Apr 24

Is Internet Security Just a Myth?

Posted in News

Internet security is not a myth or a pipe dream. However, it’s not failsafe either. In other words, when you take the right steps in order to improve Internet security, you will minimize certain threats and risks. However, no security measure will give you one hundred percent protection.

Therefore, the best strategy is to utilize a series of security measures, each of which is designed to solve a particular problem or to minimize a particular threat. By following this plan, you’ll dramatically boost the odds of avoiding identity theft, “cyber-stalking” and malware/viruses.

With this in mind, a three-prong approach to Internet security, which is intended to cover all of the bases (or to cover most of them, anyway) is definitely recommended. Now, let’s talk about the three main elements in this three-prong system…

The beauty of this system is that it doesn’t require technical skills and it won’t cost money. So, everyone may use it in order to enhance Internet privacy and security.

Step 1 – Password Improvement

Passwords are kind of dull – therefore, most people don’t spend a lot of time thinking about them. This is unfortunate, as it really is important to create strong passwords which are harder for hackers to intuit. So many of us get a little lazy and keep using weak passwords, just because they are simple and familiar.

This is actually the worst thing that we can do! Keeping the same weak password forever, which doesn’t even contain upper case letters or numbers, makes it much easier for hackers to crack your password.

Changing a password takes just a couple of minutes and it’s the best way to make life harder for hackers. Adding a number or two and one or two uppercase letters to your typical password will make it much stronger. However, while you’re at it, why not make a password that is completely new?

Never choose a password that is your birthdate or a loved one’s birthdate – in fact, it’s wise to avoid any types of passwords which hackers may be likely to test out. After all, some information about you likely exists online and this may be used in order to come up with passwords for hacking. So, do keep your password as cryptic and as strong as possible!

Step 2 – Selective Registration

Next, consider your existing registrations. Have you signed up for a lot of websites which may not be safe? It may be possible to unsubscribe from some of them in order to minimize the risk of security problems. In the future, consider the reputation of websites before handing over your private data.

By doing so, you’ll boost the chances that your personal details will remain private, as they should. There are plenty of ways to check out websites before registering – one tip is to check the official Better Business Bureau website. It’s also smart to read reviews of websites which are posted by other people.

Registering at reputable websites should be safe. However, there are shady operators out there, so don’t hesitate to check websites out carefully in order to separate the bad apples from the good ones. In addition, be careful where you comment online – remember, your comments may tell a story about your life…if possible, post anonymously. It’s harder to do so these days, but it’s not impossible.

Step 3 – Private Social Media Accounts

Social media platforms are a treasure trove for identity thieves and other types of criminals who operate online. Most people realize this already and set their privacy levels high, in order to keep their social media posts within a group of approved persons (friends or followers).

If you’re posting publicly at social media platforms, you’ll find that tightening up privacy levels gives you a lot more protection. In addition, you should consider deleting all of your older posts, as they may contain information that could be used to hurt you in some way.

Basically, you can’t be too careful. While your posts may seem safe and innocuous, they can be culled in order to access key data, such as where you live, where you work and who you hang around. This information may be utilized in order to find other information about you online.

There is really no such thing as Internet privacy. This is why it’s important to lock down profiles as much as possible and to be careful whom you let into your inner circle. By ensuring that you’ve raised privacy as high as possible, you’ll make it harder for people to find out about you.

Plenty of people have deleted their social media profiles in order to ensure privacy and security online. This may also be an option for you. However, in general, setting profiles to private will be enough to give you a decent level of protection.

Now that you know the three-step system, you’ll be ready to boost Internet protection and security.

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Apr 24

Image Formats explained

Posted in News

Every image you see on a computer or other digital device is a computer file that is interpreted into pixel colors within a defined area. The concept isn’t all that difficult to understand, but it should help when understanding the kind of format that will meet your needs for understanding which file format will best meet your needs.

Image File Data Sizes

Computer file size is typically the parameter that dictates which format will be used as a final product. This will mean that compression of the data may be a deciding factor. The many different compression methods can lead to wildly different sizes of computer files for images of the same size and color depth. The complexity of the image also factors in to how well it will compress, as some simple images like line art that have large continuous regions and lines can be losslessly compressed into a smaller GIF or PNG file than a lossy JPEG.

Image Compression

Lossless compression uses algorithms to reduce the size of a file, but the file retains the information to perfectly restore the original image. Files generated with lossless compression tend to be larger files than those generated with lossy compression. When editing images, it is best to stay with lossless compression in order to avoid the stacking-up of re-compression stages.

Lossy compression uses algorithms create a copy of the original image that will not be a perfect copy, although it may appear to be. This school of compression tends to produce images of smaller computer file size. When generating an image with lossy generation, there is often a user-controlled variable that allows for different levels of compression to trade file size reductions for increases in compression. Be aware, though, that the further compressed an image becomes, the more data it loses in comparison to an original file.

Popular Formats

JPEG files are a lossy compression file type. The popularity of the internet and the emphasis that came with reducing file sizes for faster loading made the .jpg and .jpeg file extensions well known to any internet user who saved files from browsing. The amount of compression in JPEGs can greatly reduce file sizes, and often the compression is not noticeable until the image is too greatly compressed. For a rough rule of thumb, remember: image compression is inversely proportional to the quality of the image. More compression tends to result in a lower quality in a smaller computer file.

GIF files are popular for their support of animation. They are limited to 256 colors, and are well suited for the storage of images that contain relatively few colors. Cartoon style images, shapes, logos and simple diagrams are all good applications of the .gif format.

PNG is a format that has become more popular in recent years. PNG was designed to be an alternative to the GIF format, and supports many more colors in the image. This lossless image type is well suited for use during the editing process. PNG even excels over JPEG when images have large area of uniform color.

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Apr 17

An Overview of File Hosting

Posted in News

At its core, file sharing is a simple concept. The idea is that users may upload data to the internet, and then remotely access those files at a later time. The major services related to file hosting are: remote backup, virtual storage, and content display services. Anybody who uses “the cloud” is referring to the storage or retrieval of data from a file storage service.

Remote Backup Services

This one does exactly what it says on the tin. Remote backup services are designed as a way for users or clients to store backups of their information somewhere other than their physical location. The convenience of this is apparent to anyone who has ever: had their hard drive corrupted, accidentally rendered their computer inoperable, or experienced a natural disaster that destroyed computers or storage equipment.

Virtual Storage

Aside from the basic idea of storing data online as a static backup, virtual storage also covers the concept of using working data. Virtual storage does not just mean storing things like a remote backup service. Covered under the idea of virtual storage is the use of online storage as an actual working space, where data is actively called upon, changed, and stored. Virtual storage can be thought about as using remote data storage in the place of using the hard disc as a place to store data.

Video and Image Hosting Services

This may be a basic file hosting service that many people have used without thinking about it as file hosting. Any site where a user uploads images or video, then receives a link to share the files is a file hosting service. In this case, the file isn’t stored away for backup or stored for use. The file is uploaded to a server, where it is stored (usually for a limited amount of time) and the person who uploaded the file gets the address to view or download the data. The thought of this service as sharing as opposed to storage serves as a great segue into the next topic.

File Hosting vs. File Sharing

Any medium through which data is shared over the internet has to store the data first. To be shared, data must first be in a place accessible to a person who wants to share, and people who want the data. With that in mind, it is now easy to understand that the only difference between file hosting and file sharing is security. Files intended to be shared have zero security in that they are allowed to be accessed by anyone who knows where it is kept. File sharing is a natural extension of file hosting where a person can store a file for the specific purpose of the data being viewed by others.

Whether a person is talking about off-site backups of their data, using cloud-based computing to work, or sharing files over the internet, that person is talking about using file hosting to meet their needs. With the recent proliferation of “the cloud”, people are using file hosting more than they may think

At its core, file sharing is a simple concept. The idea is that users may upload data to the internet, and then remotely access those files at a later time. The major services related to file hosting are: remote backup, virtual storage, and content display services. Anybody who uses “the cloud” is referring to the storage or retrieval of data from a file storage service.

Remote Backup Services

This one does exactly what it says on the tin. Remote backup services are designed as a way for users or clients to store backups of their information somewhere other than their physical location. The convenience of this is apparent to anyone who has ever: had their hard drive corrupted, accidentally rendered their computer inoperable, or experienced a natural disaster that destroyed computers or storage equipment.

Virtual Storage

Aside from the basic idea of storing data online as a static backup, virtual storage also covers the concept of using working data. Virtual storage does not just mean storing things like a remote backup service. Covered under the idea of virtual storage is the use of online storage as an actual working space, where data is actively called upon, changed, and stored. Virtual storage can be thought about as using remote data storage in the place of using the hard disc as a place to store data.

Video and Image Hosting Services

This may be a basic file hosting service that many people have used without thinking about it as file hosting. Any site where a user uploads images or video, then receives a link to share the files is a file hosting service. In this case, the file isn’t stored away for backup or stored for use. The file is uploaded to a server, where it is stored (usually for a limited amount of time) and the person who uploaded the file gets the address to view or download the data. The thought of this service as sharing as opposed to storage serves as a great segue into the next topic.

File Hosting vs. File Sharing

Any medium through which data is shared over the internet has to store the data first. To be shared, data must first be in a place accessible to a person who wants to share, and people who want the data. With that in mind, it is now easy to understand that the only difference between file hosting and file sharing is security. Files intended to be shared have zero security in that they are allowed to be accessed by anyone who knows where it is kept. File sharing is a natural extension of file hosting where a person can store a file for the specific purpose of the data being viewed by others.

Whether a person is talking about off-site backups of their data, using cloud-based computing to work, or sharing files over the internet, that person is talking about using file hosting to meet their needs. With the recent proliferation of “the cloud”, people are using file hosting more than they may think.

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Apr 17

Audio Formats for Home Recording

Posted in News

Audio computer files come in a variety of choices. There are a bevy of different formats available for saving any file containing audio data. The choices tend to center around the amount or type of data compression that the user may want. Below, we will attempt to scratch the surface on different audio file types.

Uncompressed Files

When working with original recording, an uncompressed file is where a file should start. Source sound files should retain as much fidelity as possible. This will help ensure that later compression into more widely distributed formats will pick up fewer artifacts along the way. For those reasons, .wav (for pc users) or .aiff (for mac users) should be the first type of computer file used for recording original recordings.

Lossless Compressed Files

Lossless audio formats offer users a little bit of compression without the loss of original data. Audio computer files in a true lossless format could be used to recreate the original uncompressed data. These are the middle ground between quality and compression, without sacrificing a lot of data or gaining large amounts of compression. These files will typically be about half the size of their uncompressed counterparts. Common file extensions that are lossless include: .flac, .wv, .ape, and .m4a (apple lossless).

Lossy Compressed Files

Lossy compression allows a file’s size to be reduced greatly. The amount of compression does, however, come at the expense of data loss. The loss of data may translate into a loss of audio quality, but there are techniques used that exploit the way we perceive sound to remove data that would be noticed less. Most of these computer files will have variable options before recording that allow different degrees of compression. The compression is usually measured in the bit rate of the recording, and the lower it is set for compression, the more quality will be lost in the audio. The most popular lossy file extension is probably .mp3, but the AAC format extensions .mp4 and .m4a will be familiar to those with iTunes.

When to Use Them

If you want to record an audio computer file, use uncompressed files to begin with. These will be large files, but they will preserve the most audio data. For audio editing, it is best to stay in the uncompressed audio formats. Lossless formats can be used to share copies of original data if there are space concerns that may require smaller files for sharing. Ideally, audio computer files should stay in uncompressed formats until they are ready to be compressed for distribution. All editing should be done before the file is compressed. When moving to compress files, look for the highest bit rate that still returns a file of the desired size. A great analogue for what is happening with bit rate compression is to look at .jpg files that have been heavily compressed. Beyond a point, artifacts begin to show in a compressed image. You can see them as blurry spots or unnatural boundaries of color on a background. That same type of artifact can be heard in .mp3 files that have been compressed too far. Instead of an unnatural color spot, audio artifacts will come across as “simplifications” to the audio such as a constant high tone during the ring of cymbals.

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Apr 10

A Closer Look at File Hosting

Posted in News

The phrase “file hosting” is often mentioned along with another internet term, “the cloud”, but what exactly does it all mean? File hosting is merely hosting files on a machine that is not yours, often times for the intent of sharing it with others. The cloud is a hot topic, buzzword, to describe remote storage. When a company, such as Dropbox, offers its file hosting services, they are simply granting users access to a certain amount of storage space on their server. One question that is asked rather frequently is “If file hosting is so simple, why do you need a service for it?”

Technically You Don’t Need a File Hosting Service

If you have the space and the right ftp program, you can host your own files and control who is allowed to download them from. The advantages that the majority of file hosting services provide are security and ease of use. They also provide a great deal of space and a type of insurance that make them better for file hosting. If you host your own files and experience a critical system failure, then you will loose your information, if it was not backed up. It may also be more difficult to share the files on a larger scale, and can eat through your bandwidth rather quickly. Services that have been established to provide file hosting are designed to handle massive amounts of data transfer, as well as provide backups and security. So, while small scale hosting is quite easily managed at home, larger scale hosting and sharing is best left to file hosting services.

There Are Several Free File Hosting Services

If a person wants to share files on a large scale, but are limited in funds. There are several free hosting services, such as MediaFire, that offer significant quantities of storage for free. They also offer quick and easy sharing, as well as permission control, so that you can establish different categories for sharing. Dropbox is another hosting service, one of the first actually, that has an easy to setup system of folders. You can create and upload files to different folders and grant unique permissions for each folder. If a person finds they need more storage, or if they are part of a business that needs a better way to share files and information, other than through emails, file hosting is becoming one of the best remedies to this need.

In Conclusion

File hosting is just another way in which the internet is put to use in a constructive and world changing manner. It allows individuals and businesses to share information with thousands of people, all around the world. Many of the file hosting services today offer free and premium levels of service, as well as mobile access that allows users to both download, and upload from anywhere, and from any computing device. The ability to share with a few clicks of the mouse has not only been able to increase professional productivity, it has allowed families and friends to share entire photo albums from their lives, no matter how far apart they are.

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Apr 10

Image File Hosting

Posted in News

Most people have a digital camera these days. Whether it’s a DSLR or a camera phone, most people have a camera that can help them capture the sights of life around them. Instead of emailing photos to friends and family, many use Facebook to share photos and albums. When the limited presentation of Facebook is not enough to satisfy a person’s desires, there are now options that can be used for photo-specific file hosting. Below are some ideas for places to share your photos. Each has its own flavor and community, so check around and see which site offers you the best place to host your image files. The pricing can be found on the sites, and can go from free up to paid premium memberships for additional features and/or storage space.

500px

This is not the site for sharing your family photos. Family vacations and birthday parties have their place, but this site is not that place. The idea of 500px is to share only your best pictures. This is where you can post those photos of which you are really proud. On 500px, you will be able to see exactly how many people have viewed and liked your photos.

Blurb

Blurb addresses those who wish to self-publish their photos, giving people a simple platform to create beautiful photo books. Blurb is geared mainly toward photo-centric topics that people may want to produce. This is a good choice for people that want an easy product to use for creating albums, like wedding albums, yearbooks, or portfolios of their photos.

Flickr

The site has recently undergone a major redesign, but remains the largest community on the web devoted to photos. Although users don’t have any control of their profile page and the black background may not look the best for photos with a black background, Flickr is still a great choice for online image file hosting. Flickr offers a terabyte of free image file hosting, and offers a good presentation of users’ photos. There are many community features that offer groups of every area of interest a way to sort and view content relevant to them.

Instagram

This is a free photo-sharing community. While there are more powerful apps for serious photographers, Instagram remains a place to easily share photos with friends or the community at-large. The latest incarnation of the service has also begun to expand on the tools offered to its users. Now, users have control to edit sharpening, color temperature, and saturation. This remains an easy tool for photo image hosting, but is getting more powerful.

Tumblr

While Tumblr is technically a blogging platform and hosting service, it is heavily image-based. Original bloggers on Tumblr can use it to host image files relevant to photography, design, paintings or other visual arts. Tumblr offers a place for people to get their feet wet with blogging. It is easy to use and has become more and more of asocial networking site as time as gone on. This is a great place to get started with blogging , and will host your blog for free.

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Apr 6

Why You Need to Improve Internet Security

Posted in News

If you don’t improve Internet security today, your personal and financial details may be at risk, now and in the future. In addition, your computer hardware and digital files may be at risk. These days, there are a range of Internet-based threats out there, including cyber-bullying, identity theft and computer viruses.

Without the right level of protection, you may pay the price for surfing the World Wide Web and posting information online.

So, what to do? Well, it’s all about unlocking superior peace of mind by knowing exactly how to minimize the risks. While true privacy online is perhaps a pipe dream, there are ways to stay safe as you enjoy all that the Internet has to offer. It’s all about understanding what the risks are then avoiding them as much as you can.

To help you get a handle on Internet security, let’s look at the biggest threats and then discuss some smart ways to minimize them…

What You Need to Avoid Online

First off, you need to protect yourself from identity theft. These days, there are criminals operating online who are devoted to finding personal information and using it in order to take advantage of others. For example, an identity thief who accesses your birthdate, address, full name etc. may be able to use this information in order to find out more about you. Some people have their credit cards “maxed out” by these callous and insensitive thieves, while others have their reputations and credit ratings ruined.

You shouldn’t discount the risk of identity theft. No one thinks it’s going to happen to them, but, sometimes, it does, and the results may be rather devastating.

The most important thing to do in order to cut the risk of falling prey to an identity thief is to think about what you post online. In other words, are you currently giving out way too much information? Are you offering up a constant stream of social media posts which tell identity thieves where you are, when you’ll be on holidays, where you work, what your marital status is, etc.?

These clever identity thieves will be able to piece together plenty of data about your life from your social media posts. So, it may be time to set your social media accounts to private or delete them entirely. If you must post publicly, be sure to use discretion. Avoid adding any personal details which will make you a target for identity thieves.

Another threat to avoid is computer viruses and malware. Phishing scams are similar problems which you may run into online. Computer viruses can do significant damage to computer hardware and they may also corrupt your digital files. In addition, malware and phishing issues may lead to identity theft.

How to Stay Safe Online

We talked about the importance of being careful with social media. This is definitely one of the biggest things to be aware of. While it is fun to overshare online, and many of us do it far too much, it’s very dangerous from an Internet security perspective. There are criminals and outright psychopaths trolling the Internet, looking for victims. People who are law-abiding and mentally healthy may be too innocent to recognize the risks.

By considering the types of people who may be looking at your profile, before you post a new Tweet or status update, you may post with more care. This will be to your benefit always.

Also, you may wish to download software which protects your precious computer hardware from viruses and malware. Most programs of this type will offer a multitude of benefits. Shop around in order to find an affordable, five-star program that really delivers. The official Norton website is a great place to check out software applications of this type. You may also find an impressive anti-malware program at the official Malwarebytes website.

Beef Up Internet Security Today

You deserve to enjoy peace of mind as you enjoy all that the Internet has to offer. When you follow our tips, you’ll access greater peace of mind. If you fail to tighten up Internet security, you may be sorry later on. While most people surf the Web without running into these problems, they do present risks, and some people have gotten burned. Hopefully, our detailed guide has given you the right blueprint for Internet security success.

So, why not follow our tips today? When you do, you’ll find that you’re able to minimize risks, while still enjoying all of the websites that you love most. Even posting on social media can be relatively low-risk, as long as you pay attention to what you post and set privacy levels to their strictest settings.

Now is a great time to tighten up security. So, what are you waiting for? Use our expert tips and tricks today.

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Mar 28

What are Computer Files?

Posted in News

A file is just a collection of data. Everything that is observed through a computer is the result of different types of files being displayed or played. Files are the data that programs or applications use to carry out a function. There are files that dictate everything from how a program works to what color to display in the case of a digital photo. Files come in many different varieties based on their function, but before we start getting into file extensions, let’s take a look at what exactly is in a file.

What’s Inside?

In the case of computer files, data are a collection of binary digits (hence the term “bit”). Bits are entries of 0s and 1s that are grouped together in flocks of 8. Those groups of 8 bits are known as bytes, and each byte can represent the binary values between 0 (00000000) and 255 (11111111), giving a byte the ability to express 256 values. In the case of characters saved in text documents, each letter is saved as a byte that corresponds to a character in the ASCII character set.

Bytes do not always equal letters, but that example is a way to understand how the strings of 0 and 1 in a file correspond to usable information. Collections of bytes are strung together to produce data that can be read in different ways by different applications. The data that represents a picture of a flower will produce an unintelligible mess if a program like a word processor tries to read it.

Extensions

A file extension is the suffix that tells what kind of information computer files contain. By this point, it is intuitive for most computer users that a .jpg extension is not something you are going to sit down and read, or that a .mp3 file is not going to be a feast for the eyes. The computer knows this, too, and uses a predetermined program to deal with the interpretation of a file based on its extension. Applications are made to take in data from a file and process it in a certain way. If you want to think about computer files like their real-world counterparts, you can imagine that the file extension is a note on the folder that tells what language the contents are in. When the instructions inside the folder are read and understood by a person, they can work with other people to build something together even though they do not share the same language.

How Big are Files?

Okay, so you know that a bit is a 1 or a 0, and that bits are strung together in groups of eight called bytes. You also know that bytes are used to carry a value that will be understood by a program to mean a certain part of instruction. So, let’s look at an example. Take a hypothetical .jpg image that is a screenshot from a game. It is just a picture that has a size of 397 KB. So, that is 397,000 bytes. 397,000 bytes * 8 gives us 3,176,000 bits, meaning that the program used to open the file read 3.176 million 0/1 entries to produce the image.

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