Online counseling

In order to be productive and get a better understanding of who you are, counseling could be a good thing for you. More and more people are considering it seriously these days in college. What about considering counseling 2.0 aka online counseling? It sounds silly but it’s actually a really interesting option to consider. Today, it might not be that simple to find the right counsel in your home town and you might be looking for some sort of confidentiality. This is a personnal issue and you would prefer that no one knows about your own personal story. Who cares anyway?

Here are the benefits of online counseling:
– You can do it from anywhere: even if you are traveling in France or Japan because you are doing an exchange program at ESSEC or Keio University you will be able to get in touch with your counsel wherever you are
– online counseling can be beneficial: you can chose who you prefer, you can change easily and you can stop whenever you want. You can follow your own agenda
– It’s much more efficient: you don’t have to waste time for trips to meet with your counsel. At the end of day, you can waste a lot of time with that
– You can do it from home: it’s probably a more relaxing experience as you can relax and discuss with your counsel from home. Experience is probably much more confortable as you are in your confort zone
– It’s probably cheaper: considering that you don’t have to go there and meet with the counsel. It’s probably cheaper as the counsel can do it from anywhere and might consider discount pricing
– You can get access to more people and have options: online counseling gives you many more options. You can get access to counsels from all over the world: New York, Boston, London, Paris or Tokyo… Who knows the best counsels might be in Tokyo… you never know!
– You have the time to decide: You can check different counsels, look at reviews, make your own checks and shop around. It’s easier to find out the right counsel for you and it’s not that simple to find the right match.

All in all, internet revolutionizes a lot of things and couseling 2.0 aka online counseling is probably something you might want to consider if you have been disappointed by regular counseling. Give it a try and you might be satisfied this time! Enjoy!

Do not use Safeguard self storage – Worst self storage ever

Sometimes it’s important for us to get reviews from our peers for you to get the right service. Today we feel it is our duty to tell the truth about awful service.

Self storage is something you might consider at some point and you have to know that safeguard self storage is the worst self storage ever. Do not use it.

Here is why:
– Their service is the worst. They don’t care about their clients and when you ask them for something they will never reply to you. They are not responsive at all.
– They overcharge and they never inform you about it. What they do is very simple. They charge you but after you close your account so you are not aware of it. Then, you get a call from a debt collection company and they force you to pay. You have 24 hours and you have no choice.
– Again if you try to contact them to get an explanation they will just say we haven’t done anything wrong. That’s too bad.

Thankfully, the FTC is here to protect us against companies like them. This is unfortunate that such companies but hopefully internet will help us make a difference between self storage at the right price and a rip off.

A new venture that could be helpful for students

A lot of students plan to become entrepreneurs and we want to help our readers!

That’s why we wanted to give the opportunity to Derek Haake, founder of BookDefy, to talk about his new venture. Good luck to him and hopefully this could be really helpful for students!

Each semester students try and figure out ways to get more money for their used textbooks and ways to save when buying textbooks. One of the simplest ways for students to do this is to exchange their books with each other. Although simple in concept, it is much more difficult in practice. Trying to figure out who wants a textbook is very difficult, and it means talking to everyone you know, then posting signs around campus and filling out information on message boards. Then, if you do find someone interested, you end up meeting some stranger in a back alley to swap your book.

The bookstores love this and keep buying used books at a fraction of what students paid for them, meanwhile, selling that same book for 2 or 3 times what they paid the first student. As students, we take this because we have no real alternatives to feeding the bookstore monopoly.

All of this has changed with BookDefy.com. BookDefy is a social tool that allows students to privately and safely exchange their textbooks. BookDefy’s software allows students to quickly enter in their old textbooks (just by the book’s ISBN), and then allows other students to search for those same textbooks by course (if their professor participates in BookDefy), or by the book’s information. From here, students approach each other in an online environment privately (i.e. no information is disclosed until an exchange is scheduled). Students then meet up in a public location, one of BookDefy’s exchange partners, and exchange their textbooks in a relatively safe environment.

BookDefy is a free service for students, and most of all, the site focuses on online privacy. Unlike most websites out there, BookDefy does not sell a student’s personal information or disclose it to third parties. BookDefy is further regulated by the community – all of which are students (you must have a valid University e-mail address to join).

Why Choose Math Tutoring for Students

It is very common to realize that you needsspecial attention to improve your performance in school.  Math tutoring is particularly useful for many students, especially when a parent is no longer able to help with complicated math homework (dad you already forgot that?). As a parent, you may be used to being a tutor of sorts for your children.  You have likely helped with countless projects and helped your kids study for math tests, history quizzes, and social studies exams.

This is a wonderful role for a parent, but math tutoring is far more difficult for most parents.  For many of us, no matter how well we did in school, math skills are simply forgotten when they aren’t used.  The majority of Americans no longer use geometry in their daily lives, and while percentages or simple equations may be easy to remember, more complex math skills are harder to bring out of the recesses of memory.

For this reason, instead of trying to teach your child yourself, good math tutoring sessions are far more productive for students.  To find good math tutoring, first start by asking your professors if they have any recommendations.  There may be older students, for example, who can tutor free of charge as a part of an after school program.

Or, you may find great math tutoring from a local college student who is looking to make some extra money and has recently taken all the classes relevant to your math needs.  If you are particularly fortunate, you may be able to find a local college student who is studying to be a math teacher, so that the student doing the math tutoring is actually practicing his or her teaching skills as well.  That is a win-win situation for everyone!

Overall, just remember that math tutoring can really help a child who is struggling with the subject.  Math is an area that is sometimes difficult for students to grasp and they simply need more one on one time to practice and also identify what they are doing wrong.  Math tutoring can provide that extra assistance, even if you as a parent remember none of your algebra training!

Stop Hunting Around for Lost Articles: Use Yahoo! MyWeb

Have you ever “lost” an article?

You know what I’m talking about — you started reading something great, bookmarked it, and then when you went looking for it two months later the only thing you can find is 404 Page Not Found? Or maybe you found it, but now the website wants you to fork over some cash in order to see it?

I hate emailing myself a link, or bookmarking it, only to learn later that the material is off-limits. The biggest culprit was the New York Times. Until recently, they would charge you for access to articles that were more than 10 days old. That meant that if I read a great editorial and the topic came up during a discussion with someone two weeks later, I couldn’t send him the link (how many students pay to read archived news?).

But there were other sites too – for instance, a couple of years ago, Poynter.org ran an amazing article series called Fifty Writing Tools. It was the best writing advice I’d ever received, and I bookmarked the index page so that I could come back to read it again and again. A few months ago, I went back to Poynter to find that half of the links were broken. I wish I could have saved those articles somewhere, and shared them with some of my friends who are aspiring journalists. (Incidentally, in writing this article I went back to Poynter and was absolutely delighted to find that the writing tips are back in the form of podcasts. Check them out at http://www.poynter.org/column.asp?id=78&aid=103943).

Digg and del.icio.us are fantastic social bookmarking sites, but they don’t allow you to save your own copies of a web page.

Yahoo! introduced a very handy resource for bookmarking pages a couple of years ago. It’s part of Yahoo! MyWeb, which is still in Beta – I guess they were taking a page from the book of Google, no pun intended. (Alright, maybe a little.)

Head over to http://myweb.yahoo.com, and once you’ve signed up, click on My Bookmarks. Since you’re just starting out, you don’t have any bookmarks. So let’s add one. On the MyWeb banner with the search box, find the link for Add Page. When you click it, a pop-up window will open up asking you for the url of the page and some other details. I took a screenshot of my own MyWeb Bookmarks page, with the window open.

Screenshot of MyWeb

As you can see, it is possible to set both public and private access levels. However, the option we are most interested in appears all the way at the bottom, in the form of a checkbox next to “Store a copy of this page.” Fill out the form, making sure that this option is checked.

When you submit the page, you’ll see something like the display in the background of my screenshot, in the main browser window. As you can see, I have saved four articles (more, actually), and for three of those articles I have added the note “For use in blog”. I got tired of linking to articles only to have them moved to paid archives (see earlier rant about New York Times). Those dates say 2008 but they are actually 2005 (I edited something small so it updated the date). If you click the titles, you will be taken to www.nytimes.com. However, if you click the little link that says “My saved copy” that I’ve circled in red, you’ll be taken to this page. Isn’t that cool?

Some convenient toolbars for your browser are available here. And if you want to use Yahoo! MyWeb for your social bookmarking, you can share saved pages with friends and colleagues under the My Contacts tab. You’ll have to add a contact first, but after that you can share easily. Try it out — my user is sadp182.

I use MyWeb occasionally to bookmark my favorite articles, to save a link when I’m putting it up on my blog, and for saving internet-based references when I’m doing research and need to be able to come back later. I hope you’ll find it useful as well!

Essential Software for Students

School is hard. Between papers to write, tests to study for, projects to finish, and trying to actually have a social life, there’s a lot for students to do. There’s also a lot of software out there that promises to make things easier – unfortunately, a lot of it can break a student budget. Fear not, though, there is help!

Students have a lot of needs when it comes to technology, and thankfully, there are free solutions to most of them. From security to socializing, I’m going to walk you through the essential software for students to keep their schoolwork and schedules on track.

    Security

AVG by Grisoft makes an excellent suite of anti-malware software. There are three programs in the suite: AVG Anti-Virus Free, AVG Anti-Spyware Free, and AVG Anti-Rootkit Free. They work well, update automatically, and you don’t have to worry about your subscription – and your protection – running out.

As for a firewall, ZoneAlarm is a great choice, free for personal and charitable use. When a program tries to access the internet, ZoneAlarm pops up a message requesting access – if you don’t know whether to allow it or not, ZoneAlarm will offer advice about what to do.

    Web Browsing and Email

For web browsing, you should get Mozilla Firefox. It’s free, it has thousands of extensions to do anything you could possibly want to do with a web browser, and it has security features built in. If you don’t do anything else, get rid of Internet Explorer. It’s a magnet for viruses, spyware, and just about every other kind of security problem that exists.

While you’re switching to Firefox, check out Mozilla Thunderbird for email. It does everything Outlook does, and like Firefox, has great extensions and built-in security.

    Office Applications

Eventually, you’re going to need to write something, or create a spreadsheet. Instead of paying $300 for Microsoft Office, get OpenOffice. It does everything that Microsoft Office does, and it’s completely free.

Likewise, why settle for the restricted features of Adobe’s Acrobat Reader? Get Foxit Reader instead – it’s faster, it lets you do things Acrobat doesn’t, and it’s free.

At some point, you’re probably going to want to do some image editing. You can shell out hundreds for Adobe Photoshop, or you can get The GIMP, a free, open-source alternative. GIMP can be a bit less intuitive, but once you learn to master it, there’s not much you can’t do with it.

    Calendar

If you’re going to keep your schedule together, you’ll need a calendar. Paper calendars are great, and it’s a good idea to have one for those times when you can’t get to your online one. However, there are a lot of positives to online calendars: email and text-message reminders, guest invitations and RSVPs, group sharing, and of course, being able to access it anywhere in the world. When it comes to online calendars, Google Calendar is my favorite.

If you like having a desktop calendar program, I recommend getting a Google Calendar account and downloading Mozilla Sunbird, a full-featured calendar program that integrates well with GCal. If you’re using Thunderbird for email, you can get Lightning, a great calendar extension for Thunderbird.

    Chatting

There are a lot of great services out there for chatting. MSN, AOL, Yahoo, and Google all have their own services. If you’re using them all, you should consider a multi-service client like Pidgin.

You can log into all your IM accounts through Pidgin and save the system resources used by running several different clients.If you want the ultimate in chatting, though, you should go for Skype. Not only does Skype provide user-to-user and group chats like the other programs, but it offers free user-to-user VOIP phone calls. You can even have large conference calls with groups of Skype users, anywhere in the world. Skype also offers plans that allow you to call landline phones, and to receive calls from landlines; in some cases, you can have your whole year’s phone service for less than you’d spend for two months with regular phone service.

    Online Applications

There are some great online applications out there for students as well. Google offers a whole library of services, including Google Scholar, Google Book Search, Google Earth, Google Translate, and the previously mentioned Google Calendar.

For note-taking, NoteSake is an excellent online application. NoteSake lets you take your notes online, share them with others, collaborate with groups, organize them, and even provide copies to others who weren’t in class.

If you’re learning a foreign language, Mango provides free online language courses. You can choose from eleven different languages, with more to come. Mango is a beta release, however, so don’t be surprised if you find the occasional cucaracha.

Justin Ryan is a freelance writer and technology consultant. He is the News Editor for LinuxJournal.com and a regular blogger for Wisebread.com, where he writes on technology, personal finance, and savvy living.

NoteSake.com

NoteSake


There are a multitude of online student tools available that can help you organize your university life. A very new website that is sure to become extremely popular amongst college students is NoteSake. Just some of its features include:

  • Collaborate with Groups
  • Pass Notes to People
  • Access Notes from any Computer
  • Organize Notes by Title, Date or any Custom Tag

This truly is a compilation of all your university work, and will definetly become many student’s homepages.

Having all of your information about your work in a single place is a very important, and will help when exams come along. No longer do you have to search through a tattered note pad or through a huge bunch of loose leaf paper. It is all there right in front of you. This can increase your productivity dramatically, but make sure you do not get distracted!