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Digital Heroism

Digital Heroism Challenge: Talent

Your Talent Hero: Riley Maguire

rileyRiley Maguire is Chief Operating Officer at The Mad Video (Discontinued 12/31/2016). Previously, he worked as senior strategy associate with StepOne Ventures and was also managing director for the Jóvenes con Futuro program. He has also served as an assistant professor at the University of Navarra, and marketing director for AFA Press. Originally from San Francisco, Riley has been involved in the international tech sector for several years and enjoys working with European startups and fostering an entrepreneurial culture.


Every digital hero starts with a small first step

Think of some of the common things you use on your computer or mobile phone every day: browsers, web pages, email, text messaging, etc. Have you ever thought about how someone came up with an idea for things like this?

Your first thought might be that the idea started with some computer programmers, or nerds, locked in a room, programming all night. Or maybe it was some engineer in a lab somewhere working for a large corporation.

These first thoughts might lead you to believe that the people who come up with these ideas are “professionals” and already very successful and important. But, every idea starts with one simple thing. It doesn’t matter who is involved or where it comes from, an idea always starts with trying to solve a problem.

Problems happen in the real world, and they come in all shapes and sizes. For example, finding a way to turn in your homework assignment you wrote up on your home computer may be a small problem, but people recognized that and came up with thumb drives, hard disks, and printers. Your teachers also may see a problem in organizing all these printed assignments that students turn in. They might also want a more convenient way to grade and give feedback. That’s why someone came up with an idea like MyBigCampus.

When people wanted an easy way to talk online, we got Skype. When it was hard to find something on the Internet, we got search engines like Google. When we wanted to find where we could buy something online, we got Amazon and eBay. Looking for an apartment was always tough, and then a guy named Craig came up with a way to list them online and called it Craigslist.

An idea is like a two-sided coin. On the one side is the problem. On the other side is the opportunity that the problem presents. You have the incredible ability to recognize these problems and look at them as opportunities. That’s the secret to how today’s big tech companies got started!

In my case, I love watching travel documentary videos online but I was always wondering where the places they went to were, and how I could see them on a map. That was the problem. The solution? Adding tags to videos with information like location. I can pause the video, click on the tag, and know exactly where the video was taken. That’s what The Mad Video does!

Everyone who reads this blog post has the talent to recognize problems and see them as opportunities. What small problems have you had in your day to day activities? What would you like to work better?

Being a digital hero allows you to think about the next step: trying to solve these problems. That is where technology comes in. And before you say, “but Riley, I don’t know much about technology,” let me let you in on another secret: you don’t have to. You just have to be familiar with the basics. Many big CEOs don’t do anything related to programming or tech. Because they lived through and understood a problem, and worked on a solution, their familiarity and vision is often more valuable than technical ability.

So, while you are still in school, you have two homework assignments. The first is to get familiar with the tech basics that you’ll use at home and in the classroom. The second is to think about some kind of problem you’ve had recently. Then try to think of how it can be an opportunity. Remember, problems can be very small and often hard to realize. Maybe you need help with your homework? Maybe you don’t have a place to lock your bike? Maybe you keep forgetting passwords for things online? Once you start identifying problems, you can think of very creative opportunities and solutions that come from fixing them!

Got a problem you would like share? Congratulations! You’ve just taken your first step as a digital hero.

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169 comments

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Raychel McKinney February 11, 2014 at 2:34 pm

Lately at our school we have been having ridiculous internet problems with the server that connects the internet for schools all across the county. If one school has problems then unfortunately everyone ends up having problems withn internet connections. This interferes with test taking and therefore messing with grades over long time periods. If there is any problem then this has become a major concern. If it was on me to fix this problem then I would create a reliable network that schools across a county would not have to worry about whether their homework was recieved or teacher’s freaking out if their tests or grades were being saved.

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Ashton Schierbaum February 11, 2014 at 9:09 am

Technology. Oh beautiful technology. I love the way you run with your mother board, being a catalyst and how your processor pushes your graphics card to get in gear. How much I love technology is why I want to be an inventor in something absolutely different. The problem is with any computer is that It is slow and it crashes. Why can’t a computer have to fry in the hot sun, left in a car for the motherboard to have to hang on for dear life. Why should have computer’s power supply have to freeze in the chilling temperatures. Why can’t there be a solution. I have a problem and with every problem there is a solution! There has to be science and chemicals that could be involved with my particular case. Can’t there be? There are probably things already like this but lets face it. It’s either down right expensive or it is exceedingly breaking. Does anybody have any ideas were I could possibly be getting started in solutions in this? I am fascinated in technology. The advancing in it is excelling very fast, skyrocketing in fact. So…. is there anything in computer science that could help me advance in this invention of mine or is it already made, waiting to be published?

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Katelyn, Oak Hill eLeader February 10, 2014 at 7:40 pm

I have a hard time finding exactly what I need on the internet. For instance, I search “Mushroom biome and jungle biome seed in minecraft” and it comes up with “Jungle temple seed ” I really wish that you could have a more specific search.

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Tanner, Oakhill eLeader February 10, 2014 at 4:15 pm

This is a personal problem. I’m really not all that good at sharpening pencils so that’s my problem. Something what i would do is to be able to put something on a sharpener to make it stop at the exact time. This would be a project I could work on.

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Matthew (eLeader) February 10, 2014 at 4:02 pm

My problem is when I start playing a game like a video game I don’t wan’t to stop until I finish the game. Then I get behind on homework and other stuff I needed to do that day.

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Shoel, Oakhill eLeader February 10, 2014 at 3:55 pm

My problem is that when have a technological problem, always ask for help. Even if it is something I can figure out I will just ask someone who is close by. I need to understand when I need help and when I can figure it out on my own.

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Sophie, Oakhill eLeader February 10, 2014 at 3:52 pm

I really enjoy learning about new websites and cool ways to put them into use. I like using websites that I can use to express my creativity. Website creation, online fliers, and picture and video editing are some of my favorites. I would like to discover some new websites, some different ones that I would have never thought of. Once I find an awesome website I like to put it into great use. I really enjoy using cool websites to express my personality.

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Kara, Oak Hill E-Leader February 10, 2014 at 2:44 pm

Since I’m an E-Leader… I already know about plenty of tools and gadgets, but I’d really like to learn how to create app and be a better coder. If I learn how to code, I can create really cool games and tools, so learning those few skills will really help with a future career.

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Mariah Marcuson February 10, 2014 at 2:34 pm

I think that we should be able to have an opportunity to bring in our own devices or provide us with devices that are easiest for us to use and are reliable to use unlike netbooks and that we know how to work and that will stay charged all day and that we are able to do all of our work on without any issues.

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austin.flake February 10, 2014 at 2:14 pm

A problem I have is with the education system in America. We are constantly bent on rating and classifying students like an assembly line and pushing them through school as efficiently as possible. We are sacrificing individual talent for efficiency. We rank every single thing on standardized tests, cataloging students by levels of education. Now with the recent changes in state about teacher licenses, we are siphoning off teacher talent as well for any person who can pass a placement test. We do not respect teachers as much as we should either, and the people who are changing the system are bent on the press. The higher numbers the better. They are jumping at silly ideas such as iPads instead of Netbooks for no reason except it’s “new” and “exciting”. Instead of testing students to death in order to compete with other schools; decreasing the quality of teachers to conserve money; and wasting away resources attempting to keep up with technology; we should focus on the students education themselves. Finland has one of the top education systems in the world. In Finland, students rarely take tests and teachers require a masters degree in order to teach. Schools are regulated and controlled evenly by the government, and 100% funded. There is only 1 standard test they ever take. Teachers are respected as doctors. Why do we not learn by example?

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Zach Cook February 10, 2014 at 2:13 pm

I think that the schools need to have a better wifi system, because when a teacher plans to use it during class and the wifi happens to be down it could result in a waste of a day. Also, I think the computer labs in school should be equipped with a higher RAM so students in technology classes can expand their technological horizons.

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Nicole Beard February 10, 2014 at 2:13 pm

I have issues keeping my to-do list up to date, and remembering things. I need to make writing things down a habit to solve these issues.

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Austin February 10, 2014 at 2:12 pm

An issue I have is not budgeting my money well. I would like to start some kind of savings account along with getting involved with the stock market. However, every time I plan on buying in on one of the two I never have any money to get me started. I think I can solve this problem by immediately depositing my money into a checking account where I can earn some interest and avoid feeling like my money isn’t burning a hole in my pocket nonstop.

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Alex Neikirk February 10, 2014 at 2:09 pm

I like how this article states that we each have the ability to recognize problems and see them as an opportunity! The problem that I come across a lot is remembering my passwords because I have so many. I’m sure there is an app for that though. It seems like everyone has already come up with solutions to all problems these days.

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victoria.fahse February 10, 2014 at 2:09 pm

When I am older I would like to know how to repair my electronics if they were broken instead of waisting my money on having someone fix it for me! I like to be independ and it comes in handy to have those skills so you can get it done a lot faster! It would also be nice to know how everthing works.

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Elliot Lehmann February 10, 2014 at 2:08 pm

One of the problems that I come across is internet connections with my netbook. When I am at school I am constatly having problems connected and staying connected with the internet.

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Devan Hostettler February 10, 2014 at 2:08 pm

Forgetting online passwords is a good problem to solve. I think it would be awesome to have a database or something to store all of your information. The only problem is how would you access this database without a password. You would also need really good security.

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Kasie Wilson February 10, 2014 at 2:06 pm

I have a problem with remembering all of my passwords for all of the different social networking and school websites. I’ve learned if I just stick with one it makes things so much easier.

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Austin Volkman February 10, 2014 at 2:06 pm

I think our electronics should be more durable, such as netbooks and iphones. In order to make this happen a plan would need to be drawn and realistic materials should be gathered to make these thougts into reality.

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Evan February 10, 2014 at 2:05 pm

I think the single biggest problem with technology is still the fact that many students are not very computer literate. Aside from cell phones, most regular people don’t know how to do very many essential things on a computer. This makes it a big challenge for teachers who prefer to use technology to make lessons that every student is capable of completing.

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Jessica February 10, 2014 at 2:05 pm

I wish that the Netbooks would function when I needed them to.

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Brylee Hagan February 10, 2014 at 2:04 pm

Technology opens the doors to great writing accomplishments. However it also has some problems as well. I try to use technology as much as I can, but I personally do not like to depend on it. I feel like technology has some wide band of when it will be reliable.

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Haley February 10, 2014 at 2:04 pm

I have a lot of problems dealing with money. As soon as I got my first job, I realized that money can only go so far. I recently downloaded an App on my phone that keeps track of money and helps me to save up for things I actually need.

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Dalton February 10, 2014 at 2:04 pm

It seems like I am always trying to hook up to WIFI, is there any way to make school internet access better? Also can we get better computers because these netbooks are so slow!

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Jamie Schuetter February 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

I am interested in learning how to fix netbooks. Many of my friends, including myself, have problems with them almost all the time. It would be nice if I could help my friends out by fixing little problems for them instead of them having to wait to have their netbook fixed by a specific person.

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tyler February 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

A problem i constantly have is while i am not using my phone or computer at a certain time, the battery charge still decreases throughout the day. I try to close all my apps and programs but it still dies eventually.

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Tanner Weaver February 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

An issue I’m having is keeping my Chemistry and Algebra II Honors grades up. I don’t enjoy either one of the subjects, so that doesn’t really help. I usually forget about the homework, so that is slowly bringing the grades down. I might just have to settle with a D for those classes, oh well.

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Janiese Dash February 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

I have a homework problem. In PreCalc, we are in trig part of the course which involves a lot of memorizing. I have to study at least every night a week to remember the whole unit circle thing.

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RoukiWolf9 February 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

My problem use to be homework, my job, and my art. The way I solved it was, first comes work, then comes homework, and finally my art. How did I solve the time problem, stay up all night, every other night, to do it. My dad never supported me in my art, because it won’t get me a good job, but I feel if I try hard enough, I can still make an impact. Maybe even someday, I can do animations for disney.

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Emily February 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

I would like to know how to make the WIfi stay connected to my phone when I move around school.

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Brittany February 10, 2014 at 2:02 pm

I have trouble memorizing stuff for anatomy, and I study pretty much every night.

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Jaelan Sanford February 10, 2014 at 2:01 pm

I would love to learn what is inside a computer im in high school and I am very curious about it.

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Bailey February 10, 2014 at 2:01 pm

Talent is sometimes such an overlooked thing in our society. Many times, someone will have an idea but won’t do anything with it because they are afraid of criticism or being laughed at. If you have an idea for something, get it out there, most of the time, someone will share the same idea as you and it could be something that takes us as a world into the future.

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ryan loehrlein February 10, 2014 at 2:00 pm

A problem that i run into is the short life span on battery life with phones, netbooks and other electronic devices.

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Anthony Juarez February 10, 2014 at 11:07 am

I want to first off say how blessed my generation is. The answer to any question we may have is just a click away. The internet and technology has transformed mankind hugely. But could that soon be a problem? I love technology, don’t get me wrong, but when does it become too much?

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Jackson Barnes February 10, 2014 at 10:00 am

I think that when were in high school we all should take an “introduction to electronics” class. itd help solve alot of problems student are having in the classroom

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Carly February 10, 2014 at 9:59 am

I don’t mind having technology in the classroom but sometimes it makes things harder, in my opinion. We wait so much time for our technology to start working when we could just open a book and start from there.

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Nolan Schapker February 10, 2014 at 9:59 am

It is very interesting to think that simple things like Facebook started with just group of guys that thought of the idea. I think that it is important for young students to learn the basis of technology and how it works.

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Mikayla Williams February 10, 2014 at 9:59 am

i take a lot of pictures throughout the school year, and I usually keep them on my computer until the end of the year so all of my pictures are together. This past year, my computer was having trouble turning on, and I started to worry because I thought all of my pictures would be stuck on my computer. I got lucky and it turned on just long enough for me to get all of my pictures off of it. After that problem, I keep all of my pictures on a thumb drive so I can access them from any computer. It made keeping track of my pictures a lot easier and less stressful!

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Lindi Stauber February 10, 2014 at 9:59 am

The technology that I have a problem with is wifi at home! Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

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maddy long February 10, 2014 at 9:59 am

My problem is sometimes when I type essays on my computer and save them sometimes they don’t save

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Allie Winstead February 10, 2014 at 9:58 am

The most common problem I have is the internet connection in the school. At times it will work fine but sometimes it won’t work at all. Also if it does work it is extremely slow and takes a long time to load. It takes up time in the class period for everyone to get on a certain program that is needed for the lesson. Most teachers use the internet as a part of their class plan and if several students can’t get connected the class plan has to change. It is a common problem in our school and it’s frustrating.

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Kenzi February 10, 2014 at 9:58 am

Sometimes technology doesn’t always work properly. Which can be very aggravating.

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Gage Montgomery February 10, 2014 at 9:57 am

I think it would be cool to have a tablet with all the capabilities of a PC. Most tablets are very limited to what they can do unless you risk viruses by downloading 3rd party programs. I would like to make a tablet that is virtually the same as a PC.

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Josh Springer February 10, 2014 at 9:57 am

It is very important for the younger generation to learn basic programming. Our world as we know it, is full of different technology. Our levels of technology is rapidly growing, and some cannot keep up. Most adults do not know as much about technology as their kids, but these younger kids are the ones who will come up with the ideas to make our technology more advanced.

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Tabitha Schaefer February 10, 2014 at 9:57 am

A day to day problem that most Americans have is fueling their cars. We should find alternative sources for fueling our cars. I know there are hyrbid cars that help conserve gas, but what about cars that run on trash? America has so much trash that it would be good for the planet to dispose of all the trash by turning it into fuel.

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Audrey Winternheimer February 10, 2014 at 9:56 am

I think my number one problem is that I really don’t enjoy using the technology my school gives us. It’s a hassle and it doesn’t seem to work often for me. If we had more updated forms of technology I would enjoy learning how to use them and it would make my work and other tasks a lot more efficient.

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Allyson Thompson February 10, 2014 at 9:55 am

One problem I’ve had is when you are working with a partner its hard to communicate and send them certain things. There should be a way where just us students can communicate and work on stuff together. Trying to find times to meet up is always hard because people are busy. If we could just log onto a website and boom be able to work together on a project from different houses, that would make group projects easier.

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Samantha February 10, 2014 at 9:55 am

An issue I have is my netbook not working properly. I could help put an end to this by persuading the school to get ipads for the students or something with less problems by backing up my claim with factual information.

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Jake Silverman February 10, 2014 at 9:55 am

Computers and technology are probably the most promising industries in our world today. With the way the world is going, there will always be a need for people who know how to work computers or better yet know how to build them. I would love to learn how to take apart and analyze different pieces of technology such as computers or phones.

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Jordan February 10, 2014 at 9:54 am

My biggest problem is saving my money after I get my paycheck. I have all these tings to pay for, gas, my insurance, if I’m out and about and I’m hungry I need to buy food. I think it would be cool if you had a bank that you could put something in place that they only allow you a certain amount of money every so often.

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Haley Redmond February 10, 2014 at 9:52 am

The problem I have is on my phone, my messaging app closes itself down a lot, and sometimes it happens after or when I’m in the middle of typing a long message. Whenever it closes itself down, my message doesn’t save as a draft. I want to find a way to save the last text you typed, even if the apps stop working and have to force close.

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Noah Weisling February 10, 2014 at 9:51 am

I think it is very important for students to become familiar with the basics of technology before they graduate high school. The world is continually becoming more and more about technology everyday. I think students should learn basic programming to help themselves become a more vital part of the skilled labor force.

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Nicole Chandler February 10, 2014 at 9:49 am

Some things I would like to learn is how to fix little things on my car, like how to change the oil, and anit freeze, and things like that. I believe it would be a lot better if I learned it myself instead of having to have a mechanic do it for me.

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Austin King February 7, 2014 at 2:37 pm

I’m a seventh grader at Helfrich Park. I wanna know how to build and fix electronic devices.

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maddy wargel February 7, 2014 at 2:37 pm

I want to learn how to work with electronics well

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Ashley Rippy February 7, 2014 at 2:36 pm

I want to be a doctor.

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Madyson Harper February 7, 2014 at 2:35 pm

I am in 7th grade and before I graduate high school, I would like to learn how to digitally advertise a sports team. What classes should I take to learn that?

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chloe wood February 7, 2014 at 2:34 pm

some people might have special talents like they are able to keep people safe like fire fighters or police men . like you might have a special talent find out what your talent is and do it if you think it will protect some one.

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Devin S. February 7, 2014 at 2:14 pm

I am interested in technology repair. I would like to learn more about it.

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mariano February 7, 2014 at 2:12 pm

I love computers and other tech but I wish I wouldn’t have to spend time explaining it to my parents

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megan d February 7, 2014 at 1:47 pm

The type of class that I want to take is typing classes.

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Dalton February 7, 2014 at 1:04 pm

A problem I have is that is programming parts. A solution is on the website where we program for manufacturing they should have a button that shows you where to put things where they need to go for the setup.

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Nicholas P February 7, 2014 at 1:02 pm

I’d like to learn a little more about vehicles. So incase my car needs to be repaired and I don’t have the money for someone else to do it, I could do it myself. The only problem is that I don’t know a whole lot about cars, and I’m afraid I might mess something up. So something that would provide you with more helpful information on vehicles would be really appreciated.

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Austin Vinson February 7, 2014 at 1:02 pm

I have a problem with wi-fi, at my school. Well it basically doesnt work at ALL. I think its the old netbooks that has problem connecting to the wi-fi. We need a update on the wi-fi or new computers, although it could be alot of money we could donate this down to elemtary schooler.

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Brandon S February 7, 2014 at 1:01 pm

I want toknow about electronics but I can know a lot more I wish I knew how to take apart different devices fix broken ones and successfully put them back together. I hope to work with electronics as a career.

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leanca tillman February 7, 2014 at 1:00 pm

The school internet always goes out and I can never do my work. They take forever to fix the problem. The net books are a problem too. We have to wait forever to get it fixed and then it breaks again.

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Allison D February 7, 2014 at 12:59 pm

These are some of the thing I want to learn about in college for 4 year I want to learn about, how to care for the reason I want to help baby because I am great with baby and they remind me of some must. They remind me of when I was a baby and how cute I was, when I see them I would be able to have my own some day. Well as you know I would to be a nurse. The other thing I would want to do is work with computer because I am not that good with the computer program and another thing is that it would be nice that I don’t have to call someone over because of the computer every five seconds I think that would be nice. I can learn different programs. This is what I want to do.

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zach adams February 7, 2014 at 12:58 pm

An issue that I have that needs to be solved is my money problems. I am always asking my parents / family for money and I don’t like to. So the other day I had went online the other day and my mom helped me fill out an application for Subway down the street from where I live at. I am old enough to have a job and I may not get enough hours but at least I will have a job that will pay me!

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Ally Wheeler February 7, 2014 at 12:55 pm

My Netbook never stays charged. I think we need some type of other computer

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:52 pm

Yep! that’s a problem! Can you think of any other kinds of solutions? (No matter how crazy they may be.)

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Kaylie K February 7, 2014 at 12:54 pm

By the time I graduate high school, I want to learn how to be a photographer. I want to learn how to work a real nice camera, and I want to learn how to make cool videos with the pictures I take. like make videos for peoples weddings or special events. I want to have my own business, and take pictures and be able to put edits on them and do cool things. So i was wondering what I need to do to for me to get all the imformation I need before I graduate high school.

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Lillie B February 7, 2014 at 12:54 pm

For high school i want to learn how to edit videos. For example on my iPod there’s an app where you pick the pictures edit them to the right sizes, and add music. I really enjoy doing this so I want to get a laptop and learn how to do bigger longer edits, on my iPod they can only be about 15-30 sec. long. But this is something that i really enjoy doing and want to learn more about. I also want to learn how to combine different songs and make cool beats. Basically learn how to Dj and make cool music. Are there classes for this in high school? If so i want to find a way to fit them into my schedule, because these are things that i enjoy doing.

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Evelyn D. February 7, 2014 at 12:52 pm

I am in the 8th grade and I would like to know what classes to get involved with as a freshman! I don’t exactly know what to go to but I’m open to ideas. I would like to know what to do in the next four years, in which I’m in high school. in the fall I will be a freshman.

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Julie H. February 7, 2014 at 12:51 pm

I would like to learn more about computer programs to help me later on in life. I would like to learn these skills in my high school years. Are there any specific classes for this?

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Jonathan B February 7, 2014 at 12:49 pm

I am in 8th grade and within the next 4 years i would like to know how to work with the radio. I want to be a sport broadcaster when i get older. Is there any classes I should be looking into taking?
I would also like to learn about engineering. Maybe some type of engineering involving cars. Are there any specific classes I should look for about that?

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Anthony Payne February 7, 2014 at 12:49 pm

What I want to learn more about technology in the next 4 years is learning more about all the types of technology and how it works

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Cameron C February 7, 2014 at 12:48 pm

I am iterested in designing video games. If this is what I’m interested in what classes should I take in the next four years? Does evsc have any classes like this? I become a high schooler in the fall. what should I take

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xavier short February 7, 2014 at 12:47 pm

i am going to start working with my moms brother on computers that he has and help him fix and find out what is wrong with them

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sean becker February 7, 2014 at 12:46 pm

I’m intrested in being a car mechanic, is their a certain age limit on working with cars? or even just being a shop assistant?

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Robert Johnson February 7, 2014 at 12:45 pm

I’m a 8th grader and I am going to be a engineer and I was wondering what classes will I have to take in high school.

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Tyler R February 7, 2014 at 12:44 pm

I’m interested in being a master at video games, Is there any classes i could take to better my skills? I will be an incoming freshman in the fall. I would like to learn this so I can beat my friends in Xbox.

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christian C February 7, 2014 at 12:44 pm

before i graduate high school I would like to learn how to make electronics.That would be cool to know how to do.what class should i take?How can i learn to do this?

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Cameron C February 7, 2014 at 12:44 pm

I wanna learn how to design video games what classes should I take?

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LiAnna P. February 7, 2014 at 12:43 pm

i want to learn about how the way to fix a computer virus on a laptop so, if i get one then i would know how to fix the laptop besides taking it to my brother who works computers.

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destiny chappell February 7, 2014 at 12:43 pm

i think this is true and everything.

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Melisa.L February 7, 2014 at 12:41 pm

I would like to know how to take apart and fix my x-box. It still runs but the to stop it overheating stopped spinning. And i would like to know how to my phone and take apart other devises. I want to lean this at the age i am now.

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Jennifer Brandt February 7, 2014 at 12:40 pm

I wanna learn to make anime on my computer using on one a program made for that. And how to make videos and music on the computer.

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chrisian.cheatem February 7, 2014 at 12:39 pm

what i want to do with my computer play games

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:51 pm

me too!

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victoria.murry February 7, 2014 at 11:38 am

I also wont to learn to draw a little better then I am now I now how to draw but I wont to draw stuff that look’s real and look like real people. and real animal’s.
I also wont to be a nurse that take’s care of babies till it’s time for them to go home.
that’s what I wont to learn to do more better in my life.

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Wesley Fuller February 7, 2014 at 11:37 am

I would like to know how to take computers or gaming systems apart and put them back together. Do you know of any classes that I could take in high school to learn how to do that?

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Sam Rea February 7, 2014 at 11:36 am

I’m not the best with computers and i would really enjoy learning more about it! I am taking digital citizenship next year. i really want to get better with excel and i think i should work on getting better with it.

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Breanna February 7, 2014 at 11:36 am

I wanna learn how to completely take a computer apart and put it back together successfully. I would like to learn how to do this before I graduate high school. What classes should I take in high school in order to learn how to do this properly?

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Trenton Young February 7, 2014 at 11:36 am

By the time I leave high-school, i would like to have a reasonable estimate on how much money it would cost and how to build desks with a built in screen that connects with a teacher’s Promethean board. In a lot of cases around my school, teachers boards are very dim and it is hard to see and pay attention to the teacher’s board. The screen would look exactly like the board but you could not do anything but watch what the teacher did on the board to a person can pay more attention to the teacher and his/her notes.It would make not seeing the board clearly a thing in the past.

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:50 pm

Trenton, you are sounding like a young entrepreneur! That’s exactly the way they think! You recognized a problem (the boards are too hard to see) and you knew there was an opportunity to fix that, you even suggest a solution (your desks with a copied screen). I don’t think the Promethean company even has something like that – and think about how many students would be able to better see and understand!

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Olivia W. February 7, 2014 at 11:36 am

I am an 8th grader right now, and I know quite a big deal about electronics. But there’s tons of things I have yet to discover and figure out. I would like to be able to design and program new things in electronics. I want to know how to design and put together new things for people to use. To make something different.

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Haley Robertson February 7, 2014 at 11:35 am

Hi, I am an 8th grader at Helfrich Park STEM Academy. There is so much more that I could learn about computers and electronics, but I don’t think I will need to know too much for the jobs I would consider working for. If I am a veterinarian, I’m sure that I will need to know how to use basic programs on a computer and be able type fairly fast. If I would choose to be an interior designer, what kind of computer programs would I use to make virtual designs? I would probably need some type of program for virtual designs! Those are a few things I think I would need to know electronically in the future.

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:46 pm

Hi Haley! The basics are always going to be really important. And more and more, even the jobs you thought would never be computer related are getting that way. Interior designers use a lot of applications on the iPad when they design (for example, I remember seeing one that could tell you which way the sun will shine in a room at any time of day: this helped the designers know where to position mirrors), and they also use modeling tools which are very professional. The point here is, just think about learning the basics, but if you are ever interested in what apps or software can help – just ask a question on Google!

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Sophie Symon February 7, 2014 at 11:35 am

I am a 8th grader at Helfrich Park. I think that when we are in high school, we should take a class that does an overview of computers and electronics. It would teach us the basics of electronics.That way, everyone in the class had a basic overview of computers so they can take another class about a specific part of electronics.

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ansley volkman February 7, 2014 at 11:34 am

Being an 8th grader, it is hard to tell what exactly I want to do. I think I would like to learn more about programming things. I believe that being able to program things can help you with so many things. You can create things. What classes would help with that in high school? Is it worth learning?

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:42 pm

Here is a secret – I don’t know what I really want to do either! And I think that the only way you can figure that out is by 1) trying stuff and eliminating what you don’t like and 2) following what your interests may be. We actually have a HUGE interest in common: creating things. I absolutely love the experience of creating something: thinking about how to do it, designing it, trying to understand how people would use it, asking for opinions and then making it better. You may too, it’s really rewarding! And that’s actually what I do now the The Mad Video. This was never a project I wanted to work in when I was in the eighth grade, but I always knew I liked building things and just kept thinking of things to build!

Yes, you’ll need some tools to help you out, computers are good to know about because computers can do things for thousands of people at the same time that you could only do for one person at a time. That’s why computers are everywhere now. I’d start learning about computer programming, or engineering, and always just follow what you are interested in!

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Amy Baker February 7, 2014 at 11:34 am

I am an Eighth grader and I would like to learn about photography and what programs to use to edit photos. What classes would I need to look in to in high school to try and be a professional photographer?

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 1:07 pm

Hi Amy,
Adobe makes awesome programs for photo editing. You might search Google or YouTube for websites or videos on some basics of using the Adobe Photoshop program.

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Jerrad Gleim February 7, 2014 at 1:40 pm

We have a lot of great teachers in Evansville who teach photography and professional video as a component of their course work and use programs like Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro. Without me asking which high school you’ll be attending next year, I’ll give you some teacher names that use these tools and you can reach out to them to learn more about what they offer in their courses.

John Wells / Jon Carl – (Reitz HS)
Karie Kirsch / Lindsey Treadway / Heather Swader – (North HS)
Andrew Coil / Gabe Golba – (Bosse HS)
Lana Powers – (Central HS)
Ryan Osborn / Brandon Kneer – (Harrison HS)
Jennifer Hopkins – (New Tech)
Dave Thomas – (SICTC)

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:35 pm

My recommendation would be just to start taking photographs! That’s the way I learned: I just took pictures of things I wanted to look at later, and I would try to “dress up” the photographs and position myself to make the picture interesting. Really, all a camera does is just capture the light that is bouncing around everywhere, so in way, taking a photograph is like “painting with light”.

Once you get started, you’ll recognize other people’s photographs for the way they dress them up as well – the colors, the way things might be blurred. Also, much of that could be done on a computer as well (which is a bit like cheating but very good professionals will know when people cheat). Anyway, a lot of this happens on the computer now so its great to know things like iPhoto, which can help you with the basics. The professional stuff gets into something called Adobe Photoshop (which is very expensive) and GIMP (which is free).

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Patricia Teas February 7, 2014 at 11:34 am

Hey! I am in the Eight grade and i would like to learn more about electronics.I know most of the basics but i just want to enhance my knowledge through everything.In the future most everything will be electronic, so i might as well learn now.

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Caleb Tichenor February 7, 2014 at 11:34 am

I would want to learn how to program a computer in 5 years.

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 1:02 pm

Caleb,
Check out http://code.org/ for a good place to start!

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Nathan A. Elder February 7, 2014 at 11:32 am

Something I would like to learn about in the next 5 years is how to produce a video game. I believe that if I knew what I was doing and had the right tools I could make an amazing video game. I have so many ideas for games because of how much I play games now, and I think I could put some of those to use, and make a game that people would enjoy. Another thing is if I made a game and it was very good. I could make a lot of money off of it. That is what I want to learn about in the next 5 years and also I want to know what classes could help me do that.

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 1:04 pm

Hi Nathan,
Have you thought about the story line for your game? What would the task be within the game? Just some questions to get you thinking!

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:30 pm

Awesome idea! I love video games and have always wondered the same thing! I know that usually they involve two important parts – great content (which is just a fancy word for “what the video game is about”) and great tech stuff (which is the graphics / gameplay / etc.). You’d need to learn more about computers there and perhaps about the languages that computers understand (which is called computer science).

The truth is – if you want to be good at video games, you’ll probably need to know a bit about both, and you’ll be on the right track!

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John M. Hall February 7, 2014 at 11:32 am

Something that i want to get to learn about before im in college would be to get really good at engennering to get good schlorship. So i will be taking engennering in high school.

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:25 pm

I wish I studied engineering! It’s isn’t about being good at math or anything, it’s about liking to build things – one of the best talents anywhere!

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mark mills February 7, 2014 at 11:30 am

the one thing that i really want to do when i grow up and it is digital is be a dubsteper or it is called Dj but they make really good money and i have been wanting to be a dubsteper forever. And my mom got me my own turn tables for christmas last year so i am starting to work pretty hard at it.

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 1:01 pm

Hi Mark,
That’s a great goal. What other tools do you need other than turn tables for this job? How do you plan to become good at it?

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brittany.holder February 7, 2014 at 11:24 am

my problem with technology is that the netbooks at school never loads and it’s wifi connection is awful.

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sarah.hills February 7, 2014 at 11:16 am

I think that we should just have ipads instead of netbooks, more people would actually take them home and charge them, and they would take more care for them.

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A'Mon'Drea Brown February 7, 2014 at 11:15 am

i would like to have faster internet at school because everything load so slow and we miss out on work that needs to be done.

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:24 pm

Yes! You successfully recognized a problem! And one of the many opportunities of faster internet is that more work can be done (not just your homework)!

Talk to your school about the other opportunities you think faster internet would provide – and make them about learning.

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baylee Lynn February 7, 2014 at 10:49 am

I’m in 6th grade and I whould like to no how to take appart a electronics device.I’m not for shere what class i whould hafe to take to beabel to do this dream of mine.I would love to lern this befor my last year of school.I hop I get to do this, I caqn’t whate.

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Kylan France February 7, 2014 at 10:48 am

Hi I am in the 6th grade at Helfrich Park STEM Academy.I want to be able to fix electronics like Xbox 1’s,PS4’s,and laptops or computers.I would also like to fix portable devices like tablets and phones.

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brody.vessels February 7, 2014 at 10:48 am

Hi i am in 6th grade and before i am done with high school i want to create my website and get lots of money for it. What classes should i take

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 12:59 pm

Hi Brody,
What topic would your website cover? Will it sell a product? What kind of product?

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Madalyn Hall February 7, 2014 at 10:48 am

I am in sixth grade and I want to learn how to make a website before I graduate high school. What age should I start getting into classes that will help improve the website? What type of classes should I take?

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Bill Gumula February 7, 2014 at 10:57 am

Madalyn – Look in the business and technology departments at your high school. They will surely have a basic web design class. However, there is nothing stopping you from getting on the web now! Start a Weebly and get a site going. Sites are about their content, not always their design! Thanks for sharing!

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Hunter Hinderliter February 7, 2014 at 10:47 am

I would want to work with robots and how to make them. and how to control them . also i would want to know whats in a computer

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Kiley Gomez February 7, 2014 at 10:47 am

I am in 6th grade at Helfrich Park STEM Achedemy, I would like to know how to repare our old computer at the age of 14 or older. It is always glitching or it just turns off. It is always really slow too! I would like to try and get the bug or whatevers in it out!

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 12:58 pm

Kiley,
Do a youtube search for the parts inside of a computer. You could then do a Google search for the newest parts on the market.

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Candace Sachs February 7, 2014 at 10:47 am

I am in 6th grade and when I get ehh around 19 I want to be an electronic.The thing I want to know how to do is make a computer that can last for a very long time through whatever.

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Bill Gumula February 7, 2014 at 10:53 am

Candance – The problem is, technology changes so fast once you build something and get it to market it is already out of date. There is already something faster and better. That is how fast our technology is growing.

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Bill Gumula February 7, 2014 at 10:53 am

Candace – sorry about your name! :)

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Ethan Jones February 7, 2014 at 10:46 am

I want to learn how to repair computers, and phone screens, and repairing game consoles, when I grow up.
I also want to own a little computer, game consoles, and phones, tablets, and other type of electronic, that I can fix.
I want to start learning this at 14 or 15.

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daniel.bittner February 7, 2014 at 10:44 am

am in 6th grade and before i am done with high school i want to learn how to make computers what classes should i take for that am 12 im i young or to old.

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Jolayne Haller February 10, 2014 at 3:13 pm

Please see the comment I left earlier.

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Eli February 7, 2014 at 10:43 am

Im in sixth grade and I would like to know how to take xboxes apart and put them back together.

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Jolayne Haller February 10, 2014 at 2:55 pm

See my answer above.

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Drake Hobbs February 7, 2014 at 10:42 am

I want to fix computers because i want to learn about computers. I think computers are ineristing because I think the inside of computers are cool.

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Gabriale Thompson February 7, 2014 at 10:42 am

I`m in 6th grade.I would like to learn how to fix a the problems it could have. What classes should I take to learn how to fix a computer.

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Jolayne Haller February 10, 2014 at 2:54 pm

Taking math classes will be important to establish the background needed to learn about computers later. Also, on the job training is very important in this field. You could job shadow during the summer at a computer repair store. There are many local ones.
You might also consider taking computer networking at the Southern Indiana and Career Center during your junior and senior years. You will attend your home high school for half of the day and the Career Center for half the day.

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jasoncox February 7, 2014 at 10:36 am

hi im jason and im in the six grade when i grow up i want to learn how to work with houses im not sure what the name of the job is but i wanna be at least 18 before i graduate what classes should i take

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Jolayne Haller February 10, 2014 at 2:35 pm

It sounds like you are interested in construction. High schools offering intro to construction courses where you learn the basics and will build things like dog houses, play houses, and picnic tables. Then, your junior and senior year you can attend the Southern Indiana Career and Technical Center for a half day to take the building trades class. You will be involved in the construction of a home from the crawl space to the roof. they also have opportunities if you are interested in the electricity of houses or the heating and air conditioning.

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Marc Vincnet February 7, 2014 at 10:34 am

I am in sixth grade and I’m 13. I would like to learn how to program computer games. I think it would be fun to make my own game one day. That is why I want to learn how to program computer games.

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Bill Gumula February 7, 2014 at 10:49 am

Marc – Check out http://code.org/learn for some starter coding programs. They are fun and will start to teach you the basics!

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Rakyn Hyas February 7, 2014 at 10:33 am

When I am older I would love to learn about how to take electronic devices apart! It would be a very fun experince, if something is broken I could take it apart and see what was wrontg with it. I am in sixth grade and would want to know how to do this by at least 9th grade.

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Miriam McDonald February 7, 2014 at 10:17 am

An issue that I have is trying to having ideas for writings I have, I try to get ideas for writing with listening to music and looking through old writings. And I’m in sixth grade and I think that there should be a creative writing class and club for aspiring authors and writers, A lot of people think that I should get a publisher and I don’t know what publishing companies to look at! So when I’m at least 18 I’ll probably have my first book out! And I hope that’ll happen!

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Jeffrey Tron February 7, 2014 at 10:35 am

Miriam, that sounds great. I believe you are doing the right things to help you with ideas. I have not researched the web, but I know if you searched the web for “Story Starters” you will get some sites with good ideas. Here is one put out by Scholastic. It even has categories to choose from. Check out this link: http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/story-starters/ Hope this helps!

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Bill Gumula February 7, 2014 at 10:35 am

Miriam – There are a lot of sites that provide prompts to get you going. Check out http://creativewritingprompts.com/ Then maybe you can design such a site or an app later in life for people who had/have the same problem as you!

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Aniyah February 7, 2014 at 10:14 am

Hey I am in sixth grade i would like to know what is inside the computer that makes the courser [mouse] move and what makes the courser click on the sites and make it show up as it does. I think we should learn this probably when we are 15 or 16 or perhaps in high school as a freshman or a soft more.

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:21 pm

Great question and this is the kind of curiosity that helps people find what they are interested in.

So, this probably started with an idea that someone had: to use something like a mouse, and to make a cursor on the screen mimic it, so that people could click on things around a computer screen (or interface).

Computer mice are now way more developed (or they don’t even exist anymore with laptops) but the original idea was to make a plastic thing with a rubber ball inside, which would move some sensors, which would relay that info to the computer screen.

Much more detail here – http://computer.howstuffworks.com/mouse2.htm

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Blaise Rodenberg February 7, 2014 at 10:13 am

I’m in sixth grade at Helfrich Park Stem Academy. What I would like to learn to do on the computers is to make electronics.

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Canaan Lutz February 7, 2014 at 10:12 am

I would like to learn how to make electronics when I am 14.

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 12:56 pm

What sort of electronics would you like to make?

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Tyler Spaulding February 7, 2014 at 10:12 am

Hi I’m in the 6th grade before I graduate high school I would like to learn how to make electronics and when I am 16 is that to old or young

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:14 pm

If you are interested in it, then it’s a great time right now to learn about it! Just think of something around the house that you’d like to understand the inner workings of. Chances are, there are things all over Youtube!

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logan culver February 10, 2014 at 2:12 pm

420 blaze it fggt

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Abby Weller February 7, 2014 at 10:11 am

My problem is i have to charge my computer all the time, because the charge wont stay in. I could fix this by getting a solar powered computer

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Jeffrey Tron February 7, 2014 at 10:31 am

A solar powered computer would be awesome! Hopefully in a few years, that will be a reality. For now, the solar panel would cost more than a new battery. If you take your current battery to a place like Batteries Plus, they can repair your battery so that it holds a charge longer pretty inexpensively. I am with you on the solar power sure would be nice. Thanks!

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Sarah Stephens
Sarah Stephens February 7, 2014 at 12:54 pm

That is an awesome idea!! I’d definitely buy one!

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Yes! That’s exactly it! It’s great that you recognize the problem (the charge won’t stay in) and can think of opportunities (solar power) – that’s exactly how great ideas get started!

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logan culver February 10, 2014 at 2:09 pm

Who would want to sit in the hot sun while on a laptop? The glare would be unbearable. 3/10 would not bang.

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tyler weatherford February 7, 2014 at 10:10 am

Hi im in 6th grade and before I graduate high school I wanna learn how to work the tools and apps. What class would I have to take to learn this?

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 6:07 pm

Hey Tyler, if by tools and apps you mean the stuff that makes apps work, you need to learn about what they call computer programming (which is really just a fancy way of writing things in languages that computers can understand). You can start with the basics – something like what makes a web page work – on many services like codeacademy.com. With webpages, for example, the code is written in a language called HTML, which is pretty easy to pick up.

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Jadrian Green February 7, 2014 at 10:07 am

I think that we should just have ipads instead of netbooks

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Riley Maguire February 7, 2014 at 5:58 pm

That would be cool wouldn’t it? This is a good thing to think about – what kind of opportunities or new things would you be able to do with them? Answer that question, share that with your teachers and maybe it’ll help them make a decision on bringing them into the classroom!

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Michael February 7, 2014 at 10:07 am

i am in sixed grade and I really wanna know how to take xboxs and combuters apart i want to learn that when I am 15.

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Jeffrey Tron February 7, 2014 at 10:27 am

There is a lot of demand for computer repair workers. Have you looked on YouTube for “how to change a video card” or “how to add memory to your PC?” That would be some basic things you could start with help from your parent. Check it out. Thanks for the comment.

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Hunter February 7, 2014 at 10:04 am

An issue that I have that needs to be solved is my money problems. I am always asking my parents / family for money and I don’t like to. So the other day I had went online the other day and my mom helped me fill out an application for Subway down the street from where I live at. I am old enough to have a job and I may not get enough hours but at least I will have a job that will pay me!

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Ethan Jones February 7, 2014 at 10:48 am

Nice, Hunter

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