Legal Music Downloads

Written by Mike Ber

On July 28, 2004, French Internet access providers and music copyright owners signed a joint national charter aimed at cracking down on illegal downloads and expandingrepparttar amount of legal music tracks available online (AFP). This isrepparttar 137012 latest in a series of moves taken acrossrepparttar 137013 world to combat music piracy as production labels see more and more of their profits being lost to illegal downloads of music files.

The music industry has been sayingrepparttar 137014 same thing for several years now: peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing networks are exponentially distributing pirated music acrossrepparttar 137015 world throughrepparttar 137016 Internet, and this constitutes a copyright infringement. In English, this means thatrepparttar 137017 fact that I downloaded a Tori Amos track through Kazaa yesterday and am listening to it right now makes me a criminal. So far, so good. Quite true as well.

Butrepparttar 137018 real problem is not that people do not want to pay for music. Often I sample new music offrepparttar 137019 Internet before buyingrepparttar 137020 CDs. Chances are that if I like most ofrepparttar 137021 album, I’m going to buy it. Onrepparttar 137022 surface this is what radio stations do when they play music. The difference, however, is that it has become insanely easy for me to acquire almost-as-good-as-original quality mp3s of any track that I want to listen to, and even if I don’t pay a dime, no one is there to catch me.

The principle of accountability has vanished. When one sees that there are two ways to acquirerepparttar 137023 same product, but by sacrificing a ‘little’ bit of quality you can get it for free without being penalized for it, what would most rational people do? P2P networks have made finding music offrepparttar 137024 Internet ridiculously easy, and most of us tend to ‘forget’ our social responsibility when it comes to such ‘trivial’ matters. To contribute to this, copy-protection techniques used on CDs by major production houses are always a step behindrepparttar 137025 latest cracking algorithms, and steps taken to prevent ‘ripping’ of CDs and DVDs have proven fruitless so far.

Enter music downloads ofrepparttar 137026 legal kind. Disregardingrepparttar 137027 small number of ‘free’ legal music available for promotional purposes, more and more artists and labels have begun to provide a pay-per-download music service. In essence, you can purchase individual tracks or complete albums through a secure online transaction and then download your ‘purchase’ and, with variable limits to personal use, pretty much do whatever you want to do with it (Several providers digitally encoderepparttar 137028 files to prevent them from being played on other computers, or to be burned onto CD-Rs) This is both a move to encourage free-riders such as me to start acquiring ‘legal’ music and an economic adjustment torepparttar 137029 digital music revolution. Developing technologies are changingrepparttar 137030 way people perceive and use music. The advent of iPod and other mp3 players has meant that more and more people are becoming accustomed to carrying around their complete music collections withrepparttar 137031 latest players offering space for around 10,000 songs. This holds frightening possibilities for record companies. There is a very real concern withinrepparttar 137032 industry thatrepparttar 137033 CD format is fast going out of style, and as technology evolves, consumer demands forrepparttar 137034 best ‘medium’ will change as well. Till a few years ago audio CDs offered unparalleled music quality, a factor record companies used to encourage people to ‘buy instead of steal (download)’. However, today’s high-quality digital formats mean that audio quality is comparable, and in some cases equal to, CDs. Some experts are even starting to predict that within a decade CDs will become history as digital music will evolve to a point where we will be have access to our entire music collection (hopefully paid for) wherever we want it: in our car, at work, anywhere inrepparttar 137035 house, even onrepparttar 137036 beach. Matched with promises (andrepparttar 137037 reality) of audio quality, this is a serious threat to traditional business.

Computers: You CAN Master Any Program

Written by Dina Giolitto,

There was a time when I didn't think I'd ever be a "computer" person. I was inrepparttar seventh grade, taking a class in MS-DOS and learning some program called Turtle. (I know why they called it Turtle. It was pretty darned slow.) I had to key in about 50 commands just to draw a half-inch line. I wasn't all that skilled at doing this. One little typo, and my line was going inrepparttar 136973 total wrong direction. I got a C+ inrepparttar 136974 class.

Today, I'm something of an unofficial computer geek. I can pretty much learn any graphics, word processing or utilities program onrepparttar 136975 fly, and I even surprise myself with html tricks from time to time. Now forrepparttar 136976 good news: so can you. "No, I can't!" you say. YES, you CAN.

Today's kids are little tech-heads. Ever seen a four-year-old grabrepparttar 136977 mouse and start web-surfing like it was nothing? It happens allrepparttar 136978 time. By age fifteen, kids are designing websites and manipulating photos like old pros. How can this be? Do they grow them smarter these days?

Well, I know some parents who'll tell you so, butrepparttar 136979 truth is, today's computer programs are designed so thatrepparttar 136980 average untrained human being can learn them quickly and apply them in myriad ways. We call them Applications because they're meant to be applied for practical use to enhance our quality of living.

I mentioned MS-DOS in my intro. Forrepparttar 136981 most part, today's user doesn't need to know a thing about MS-DOS. The reason? Modern computers run on operating systems, such as Windows for PC and OS for Mac. The operating system covers up all that wacky-looking MS-DOS code with windows and buttons that practically beg us out loud, "CLICK ME!" And click them we do.

Just likerepparttar 136982 operating system, most programs use what's called an interface: that shell or skin that hidesrepparttar 136983 code, and allows you to navigate and manipulate using simple clicks and commands. This interface is what enables us to just stroll on over and start making things happen onrepparttar 136984 computer without knowing a darned thing about programming or codes or much of anything.

It's these windows that we can open and shut, buttons we can click, and menus we can pull down using our trusty mouse, that let us accomplish tasks of great magnitude in record time, using these powerful machines. We can do some pretty incredible things just by POINTING AND CLICKING. If you think about this long enough, it might blow your mind.

Point and click. That'srepparttar 136985 basic concept of usingrepparttar 136986 mouse, and it's such a simple method that 3-year-olds take to it with ease. SEE IT, GRAB IT. This is how today's computers work, in a nutshell. With this concept in mind, computer programmers did a beautiful thing for all of us humble users: they were kind enough to develop a standard method of navigating through most programs.

Seek... and find. That's basically what your brain is doing as your hand points and clicks. Every time you use a program, you're searching for a word or a symbol or a button that will perform a desired action or take you to a desired destination. So, what'srepparttar 136987 big challenge? To think ofrepparttar 136988 word that describesrepparttar 136989 action that you need performed. Words like... SAVE. MOVE. DELETE. CHANGE. COPY. PASTE. You know those words! And you can learn even more words, easily.

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