Perhaps you’re about to graduate high school and have a passion for technology. You don’t necessarily feel like the traditional route of higher education is for you.

You aren’t the only one.

A recent $412 million dollar acquisition of one of the best coding bootcamps shows how higher education is changing.

You’ve heard about coding bootcamps and are wondering what exactly do you learn, and what it’s actually like to attend one. The idea of getting practical digital skills in coding in as little as 12 weeks is appealing.

Are you looking to learn code in an intensive and dedicated environment? Thinking about joining a bootcamp?

Let’s find out what attending one may be like.

What Are the Best Coding Bootcamps Actually Like to Attend?

Before you submit your application to a coding bootcamp, you will want to know more about what they teach, how long the program is, and what it costs. You will also want to know how fast you will get a job.

According to Course Report, 79% of graduates of coding bootcamps found jobs within 120 days or less.  Also, the average person entering a bootcamp made about $47,000 before the bootcamp and about $71,000 after attending.

Let’s clear up the basics about what coding is first, as well as the definition of bootcamp. Coding involves digital skills such as web development, data science, digital marketing, and UX/UI Marketing. A bootcamp is a class that is a shorter, more intensive, and has practical application.

For example, with a computer science degree, you may spend 4+ years getting your degree and have a few internships. In comparison, your coding bootcamps will be complete as fast as in 12-24 weeks. It will also have more time coding in web development, data science, and digital marketing.

Here is what the best coding bootcamps are like.

Free Intro to Coding

Before you decide whether you want to attend a coding bootcamp, you may want to take a free intro to coding.

This is a simple beginner course to help you see if coding and a coding bootcamp is for you. With any coding experience, you will want to schedule a session with an advisor for admissions and finances.

Eleven Fifty Academy

Eleven Fifty offers two free courses on coding and cybersecurity for you to get an initial sense of whether coding bootcamp is for you. They offer both full-time and part-time immerse options.

Their options include coding and cybersecurity, Javascript, and more. You can expect to experience a real-time immersion into what you’ll be doing in coding.

They offer scholarships and financial aid for tuition. 

Flatiron, Assembly, and Thinkful

These are similar coding bootcamps that may offer both online options and local options for you. They have also created a free coding prep bootcamp online for you to test drive.

They provide insights into data and placements with a 97% employment rate and $74,000 starting salary post-graduation.

Final Thoughts on the Top Coding Bootcamps

In summary, the best coding bootcamps may be 100% online, offer live classes, and include hands-on practical coding projects. They’re intensive programs that you can complete in less than a year with attractive opportunities. 

Feel free to explore more information on technology via our blog.

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Antivirus Software Can Make Your Computer More Vulnerable

The core purpose of an antivirus software is to protect your device and the data from malicious programs such as viruses and malware. Using a computer or a smartphone without an antivirus program is considered a crime. Users feel protected and safe.

The beginning of the post-antivirus age

Recently, a team of internet security experts has warned that the antivirus programs are not doing a great job in protecting the data of the users. In fact, in most of the cases, an antivirus program can make your device and data more vulnerable.

The Project Zero team at Google found some major issues in the Symantec and the Norton antivirus programs. The CERT has already issued a warning to the users, and the antivirus companies have been informed of these vulnerabilities but the damage has been done.

No Antivirus Security

Is it safe to use antivirus software?

The question that the users are asking if it is safe to use malware programs?

Apparently, having an antivirus program installed on your machine feels good and protected. This is a general perception but some of the experts don’t use any antivirus software.

Mannan, a professor in Concordia University doesn’t use any antivirus. He hasn’t used any for ages because he doesn’t see any value in them.
The CEO of KnowBe4 is of the view that antiviruses are useless and don’t help in protecting the data anymore.

The best thing you can do is stop using antivirus software. This is what the security experts are doing and this is what they call ‘the post-antivirus age’. Having an antivirus installed on your machine that doesn’t do anything is of no use. Not just that antivirus programs don’t have the capacity to detect and remove viruses but they create loopholes and make your machine insecure.

How to protect your data and device

In today’s post-antivirus age, the best way to protect your machines and data from security breaches is to take precautionary measures. Here is what you should do.

1. Refrain from downloading files and attachments from unknown persons. This is the most common and the primary source of infecting your machine with a virus.
2. Update the operating system regularly. Keep it updated. You should be the first to install the updates from the operating system as these updates keep the machine current and protected.
3. Do not use external storage devices from unknown people. The best practice is to refrain from attaching any storage device with your primary work machine. Ask people to share files via cloud or email as this is a safer route.
4. Do not connect with public Wi-Fi and networks. It is an awesome feeling when your device catches an open network but let this feeling not dominate your senses.
5. Backup your data regularly. This includes everything ranging from photos to videos to important files. Either use cloud storage or an external storage device for the backup.

The best you can do to protect your computer, smartphone and other devices from viruses is to refrain from using antivirus software. This is what the experts do and recommend.

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The Near Future of Artificial Intelligence (The Road to Super Intelligent Apps and Machines)

Artificial intelligence (AI) is here to stay. The AI revolution is changing lives but scaring millions. AIs are already everywhere, supporting the human mind in the pursuit to make the world better and our way of life even easier.

They’re in your phones and favorite apps, helping you stay connected and do what you do best in the shortest possible time. And they’re doing a better job than anything else could.

The opportunities are endless and uncertain. Human development cannot be stopped. The future can only be better but with lots of questions.

I am no expert in artificial intelligence. But the rise of super intelligent machine and software is upon us and I am just as curious as you are about what AI can (and will ultimately) do. The future of AI is bright but frightening.

Technology giants are cashing in on the next big thing. Mark Zuckerberg made a $2 billion bet on Oculus Rift (a virtual-reality headset) in 2014. And Facebook has over 50-person AI lab. Google wants a breakthrough in AI that could change history, hence the acquisition of the DeepMind team last year. Google’s DeepMind defeated legendary Go (an ancient Chinese board game that has long been considered one of the great challenges faced by AI) player Lee Se-dol in historic victory earlier this month. IBM has bet billions on the success of Watson, its Jeopardy question-answering supercomputer.

Meanwhile, a russian millionaire is exploring ways to upload the human brain to a computer. “The ultimate goal of my plan is to transfer someone’s personality into a completely new body,” he says.

“Within the next 30 years,” promises Dmitry Itskov, “I am going to make sure that we can all live forever.”

Elsewhere, Elon Musk wants to start selling self-driving cars next year. His company, Tesla and other car manufacturers like Honda, Nissan, Ford and more are testing semi-autonomous cars. Even Uber is seeking to buy self-driving cars.

Musk’s Tesla Motors assembly plant is powered by lots of intelligent machines. Tesla is reinventing the American auto industry. And don’t forget Musk has been sending rockets to space for sometime now. His SpaceX company has partnered with NASA to explore reusable rockets.

Richard Branson has not given up on getting millionaires to other planets as tourists after that fatal accident. Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin is also exploring spaceflight technology. Billionaires are now counting on super machines to do things humans could only think of as of the seventeenth century.

It’s Musk, again. He wants to build Hyperloops that will make it possible to work at the far east of the US and still be able to live at the far west. He is already considering designs.

MIT student engineers won a competition to transform Musk’s idea into a design for a Hyperloop to move pods of people at high speed.

The Hyperloop is a high-speed ground transport concept proposed by Musk to transport “pods” of 20 to 30 people through a 12-foot diameter tube at speeds of roughly 700mph (1,127km/h). How cool is that?

In other news, Google has fallen out of love with robots. Alphabet, the parent company is trying to sell Boston Dynamics, the high-profile robotics startup it bought in late 2013.

With all the hype, AI is still in infancy. There is still a lot to explore and experiment. But the rate of technological impact in recent times means that humans are closer to getting machines to do our current jobs.

Employees in big companies don’t like that. Actually, nobody is secured about their jobs. Robots are eating jobs. But most businesses value profits more than anything. And they will do everything in their power to reduce their reliance on humans to do routine jobs.

Robots are now becoming supremely capable in medical diagnosis, manufacturing, assembly, packing and packaging, surgery, weaponry, research and more. Are we headed into a jobless future?

What AI apps are already doing

You are probably using a lot of AI apps. Facebook uses AI to make sure your newsfeed is exactly what you want. Apple’s Siri uses AI to learn your voice and to translate your vocal requests into search, search them, and provide you an answer.

Google’s search function enables you to find what you’re looking for. Microsoft’s Cortana helps you get things done by letting your PC and smartphone work together.

Apps like GetYana, Tempo, Microsoft Fetch, Blippar, Bernie, Virtual Talk, Snips, Alice and a lot more are using artificial intelligence in one way or the other to help people get the right information and service they want.

What will AI apps do in the future?

Smartphones are still not very helpful at getting us information or data based on what we are already doing. We still have to touch a lot of apps and buttons to access exactly what we want. With all the power in our hands, we should be doing better.

AI apps of the near future will practically blow your mind. Based on what innovators are experimenting and exploring, your smartphone promises to be the best mobile super computer you can ever own.

You will be able to download advanced AI apps like other apps int the future. And they will possibly spread out into other devices and computers you permit them to. Even your walls, clothes, office, car, luggage. Internet of Things (IoT) will be a lot more beneficial and interesting tomorrow or the next decade.

AI apps will be able to not only read your email and write responses but they could go through them, find you what matters and what doesn’t, monitor which ones were read and report back to you.They will log on to all your apps, using your passwords, check updates, respond to them.

They will even change your passwords if they are compromised without your knowledge. And if you are worried about big brother watching you, you AI apps will handle your encryptions and keep your data private.

Reading news and summarising them for you will be basic. You won’t even have to flip through all those news apps you have installed.

Investing will solely be done by intelligent apps that will be made public. You won’t have to study the stock market and trends. You will be able to assign research tasks to machines whiles your AI apps take care of where to invest your money.

AI investment apps will know when to exactly pull out of a deal and when to cash in. They will give you reasons why those stock options are best for you based on your age and interests.  Technology-driven brokerage will operate with significantly less overhead.

AI apps will soon file your tax returns like humans. Your accountants will be very worried, but you will choose machines over them.

The combination of super intelligent computers, intelligent software, and APIs will open up new opportunities for even smarter apps that will be able to do a lot more than we will be able to imagine.

As impressive as the AI powered suggestions for replies to your emails are, they’re just not very useful yet. The likes of Siri, Google Voice, Cortana and Robin have a lot to learn.

What will you do with all the free time on your hands when machines are busy at work?

But there are downsides to a utopian world where machines and intelligent software rule and make lives better, faster and more efficient.

The big question is: why, then are humans interested in building machines whose intelligence will overwhelm us and even scare the hell out of us?

Humans evolve. That’s how we have come this far. The people of the fourteenth century will be amazed at what we have been able to accomplish today. It’s human nature to learn as much as we can and to build the best machines and tools we can.

And we will stop at nothing to do what we think it’s possible. Technologists, engineers and innovators are in business to build the most potent machines they can, not to worry about consequences, at the moment.

The basics of life like awesome cars, fast trains and aeroplanes, super computers, smartphones etc are all innovations that have changed how we work. But we want more than that. We are not impressed. Every generation expects more. We thrive on improved technology.

Are we there wet?

AI today is nowhere near understanding the human mind, yet. There is still a lot to do and comprehend. But the good and scary news is that corporate giants are investing billions of dollars into super computers, robotics, Internet of Things etc.

It’s a race of the giants. The more we learn, the more carefully, critically and intelligently we can observe what AI can do and the limits we need to overcome.

Geoffrey Hinton, an artificial intelligence (AI) expert and Google AI ‘godfather’ believes machines could match human abilities in five years.

On whether people should fear AI, he said in an interview with Macleans off the back of Google DeepMind’s victory against AlphaGo:

“Any new technology, if it’s used by evil people, bad things can happen,” said Hinton. “But that’s more a question of the politics of the technology.”

He continued: “The main thing shouldn’t be, how do we cripple this technology so it can’t be harmful, it should be, how do we improve our political system so people can’t use it for bad purposes?”

The risks of AI are real. Can we handle it?

Dr. Joscha Bach of the MIT Media Lab and Harvard Program for Evolutionary Dynamics says:

“The risks brought about by near-term AI may turn out to be the same risks that are already inherent in our society. Automation through AI will increase productivity, but won’t improve our living conditions if we don’t move away from a labor/wage based economy.

It may also speed up pollution and resource exhaustion, if we don’t manage to install meaningful regulations. Even in the long run, making AI safe for humanity may turn out to be the same as making our society safe for humanity.”

Technologists, innovators and engineers will continue to do everything they can to get machines as intelligent as possible. But no artificial mind will ever come close to the human mind. No computer will ever feel anything like we do. Software can only simulate feeling.

The human mind is no static, rational machine. Feeling and consciousness can only happen (so far as we know now) to organic beings and animals. It can’t be produced, no matter what, by mere software on a computer.

Our machines are here to serve us but will they take over our lives? Will our robots outthink us and even harm us?

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