My Literacy of Computers
One of my first electronics that I had was an old desktop computer, the type with the old bulky screen that took up a ton of space. I didn’t have internet acess yet, so I played pinball and other old games that were on the computer. That was a long time ago when I didn’t know much about computers, but it was what sparked my interest in computers. It wasn’t until my senior year of high school that I wanted to go into computer science. I enjoy working with computers like building them or fixing them. I learned all of these things over a lot of time and practice with learning how computers work.
When I got my first laptop I could use the internet freely. This is when I started looking at computers and getting interest in gaming computers which is where I learned about some of the parts in computers. For gaming computers, the main part that someone would spend the most money on would be the processor and graphics card. Those two can have price ranges from hundreds to even thousands, but you really don’t have to spend a huge amount to get satisfactory performance. From much time spent reading on forums and watching YouTube videos, I could learn that you can spend less money on parts of the computer that don’t affect performance. Instead of getting a case that’s decked out with LED’s and has tons of space, start off with a regular or ATX sized case. ATX is the standard size for computer cases which means it will work with the most common sized motherboard which is the ATX size. Getting a basic case will save money for the other parts that matter more in the computer performance.
The whole reason I got into computers was video games, I wanted to play the new games that at the time were intensive and you needed a powerful pc to run some of the games. I then learned about how people make a living off making games for companies and this was called programming. Out of all the parts of video game making, creating the game from the ground up sounded great to me to do for a living. I knew this would take an education so I knew I would need to go to college. I just kept with school and computers was a hobby.
In this time between high school and college, I learned about more about computer networks, building computers, and more about working with software. One of the first things about computer networking that you learn about is IP addresses. Your PC has a local address that identifies it on a network. Each electronic device that connects to the internet is given an IP address. I learned about IP addresses from the internet and friends who are also in the computer field now. I learned how to change and work with different IP addresses in high school.
My senior year of high school I took a cybersecurity class that helped me learn about what I need to do to pursue a career in computers as well as more networking knowledge. His name was Yui Shin, in his class, I practiced working with IP’s and how to get into areas on windows that have important settings that you can change. He also taught a good lesson on hardware about motherboards and said, “Never walk on carpet with computer parts in your hands or do any work on computers on the carpet because it will fry the board with static electricity”. This class is what made me really want to do computer science, though at first, I wanted to do cybersecurity because of the class. Computer science is a better major choice because the classes are better and more available, as well as transferable a lot easier.
The next part of my computer literacy would be learning about what specifically do I have to do to get the major completed. First, I will be at Crafton Hills College to get the classes I need to get into another college. I learned which classes I needed from counselors at Crafton and looking online at what the major requires for which colleges. The classes I will be taking at Crafton are mostly Math and English with some programming classes. Then other requirements such as prehistoric art and other options that are available. The programming classes will teach me how to read computer languages and work with them to develop software for computers. They will also build on what I already know even more so I have a better basis of knowledge on computer science. My plans for my future literacy is to get professionally trained so I can have my own computer repair for hardware and software problems on PC, Mac, and other operating systems like Linux. To do this, I must complete my education at CHC and beyond. Once I have all the certifications and my major is complete, I will keep learning because technology keeps moving and every year it gets faster.
In conclusion, I feel that many people in my life and the internet are the main sponsors for this major, but if it was not for taking the cybersecurity class in high school I feel that a would not have found much interest in computers as a career because I hadn’t seen it as that yet. Once I saw that it can be more than just a hobby I knew I had to pursue it as I was never good at athletic things and had nothing else I wanted to pursue at the time, so it made sense to do it and start early on it. I still feel that this is an appropriate choice and I wouldn’t be where I am today in my literacy of computers without my sponsors. Although it was mostly the internet that I found out about most of these things, if it wasn’t for the other experiences like getting my first computer or taking the high school class, then I wouldn’t have a reason to research and practice these things because I wouldn’t have the interest to do it for a living.
The image above demonstrates core computer components in a regular ATX sized computer case.
Image found on Google images