5 Most Exciting Features in Windows 10

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windows 10

Software evolution seems not to be stopping for Microsoft company, which has been in the spotlight for Operating Systems like; Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and now 10. A revolutionary OS that dwells to bind the truth and fiction in a single realm of infinity- its inward complexity is absolute simplicity for an average user.

Just in a measure of optimism, what draws one most to this eye-catching software include the following new elements;

 

  1. Cortana

 

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Cortana

    This feature lets you make quick searches without necessarily clicking through the desktop icons. With a search space ready, Cortana is simply a ‘let me go’ unidirectional director. It direct access to the web with a single command voice. With it, one can easily manipulate(for positive purposes) in-built basic arts like the calendar, time, and even set reminders!

 

  1. The Start Menu interface

 

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The start menu interface

     Colors bring out beauty once you get hold of this item. Blue, in particular, creates an ambiance of comfort and readiness, a fact which is fully sedentary when you open Windows 10. Earlier versions like Windows 8 denied us the Start Menu . But it came back in Windows 10 , better and a lot better.

Once clicked, a window appears with two separate distinctions in the middle, to the left, there’s a panel (alphabetically arranged) with applications in an up-down scroll menu.

Attached to this drop down menu is a 40% widescreen with a number of applications represented in square boxes which can easily be adjusted to suit one’s best orientation.

 

  1. Microsoft Edge

 

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Microsoft Edge

    Have you ever wondered what Internet Explorer was all about with its non-changing, non-exciting interface? It’s a done deal and I don’t think we are going back again. Ms Edge, a new search engine, or browser, has replaced Explorer, the old version.

Appealing is the simplicity and so is this new version. With support of BING, Ms Edge is more secure with filters which warn you about the kind of content(graphic or explicit) you are searching.

Temporary and permanent closure options are available in case you wish to change them. This is a greatly protective security feature especially when one shares one’s computer with his/her kids.

 

4.The central notification center

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Notification Center

 Located to the extreme right corner of the screen on the task bar is this new feature. And its complete! Trust that everything I’m about to mention is there; controls for brightness, Wi-Fi, Tablet mode, settings, Current Location and note  pad. This menu can be collapsed if you don’t want to see it or expand to make changes. Think of it as your new control panel.

Apparently one can switch between the Tablet mode and the Windows mode, this action comes handy where you have a touch-sensitive monitor.

 

  1. Multiple desktop functionality

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     Previous versions of Windows gave no permission to this new feature. But now it’s here with us. Switching between/among 2 or more applications is more sufficient. I know average consumers of computers won’t find this feature related to their handheld mouse tricks, but savvies with multiple live works will find switching in between apps and desktop an essential gain. 

 

/tech-wise/App-format

    

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Adverse Changes in Bank Rates a Hindrance to Economic Prospects

 

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central bank of kenya

The recent capping of the interest rates by the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), pictured above, which limits commercial banks’ lending rate at 14% or 400 base points above the CBK rate of 10% sets a rather bleak future for domestic investors in the country. A turn down of loans to borrowers with the major decision settling at the government’s side, as a borrower, was the most immediate reaction banks had when the law was put in place.

With borrowers in a prompt move to secure the never to be ‘ cheap loans’, despair was experienced by majority of them as banks locked the lending ‘doors’ citing non-profitability on their side; a fact which was to be announced later by all banks.

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CBK Governor, P.Noroge

But on a rather different twist of events, some banks, including Kenya’s largest bank in terms of asset accumulation and profit margins, Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) opted to proceed with the law, only to reap as low as 0.5% growth in its first quarter returns(December 2016- March 2017). The CBK Governor, Dr. Paul Njoroge, pictured above to the left, more adamant on the implementation of the new law , was met with a faint heart towards the sink in the prolonged profits made by commercial banks.

The anticipated reduction in profits by banks saw many of them opt not to lend to ‘small borrowers’ but direct their loans to large firms and the government, who have much higher returns and default-free, As earlier explained, the intention of this law was to stimulate the economy by increasing credit accessibility to customers. This was , however, thwarted by the banks when they ceased lending to individuals and chose credit-worthy corporate and government agencies in general.

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Getty image

If the later is true, then the sole reason for the passing of the bill was not achieved as expected. Lawmakers will have again to make considerations on whether to wither the law away or make amendments to it. As this continues to unfold, politicians took  in the issue citing improper gauge in reference to the reaction of the commercial banks. Our eyes remain open to see whether these changes will be effected or not.

 

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Want to ask for a salary increment? Here is the polite way to do it.

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Image subject to copyright

Several circumstances, at some point in your career, could compel you to ask for an increase  in your monthly payment. These factors vary and their magnitude is as often insatiable as their impact on you. However, at workplace, considerations have to be made on the approach one should take when asking for that increment.

Your relationship with your employer, assuming that the longevity of your work at the company is still minute, will seldom jump into many employees’ minds before they make this move.  During this difficult economic times, employees who wish to have their salaries raised ought to consider the following determinants before they jot down that request letter.

1.The company’s current performance : 

 

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performance

This is one crucial element to be put into consideration before asking for an increment. The prevailing performance of the company will help you know when the time is right or not. Where the company is undergoing tough economic pesters , don’t bother to ask for the rise regardless of how polite your request will be.  It’s a guarantee that you won’t be fruitful in your quest. Solution?

Wait for the appropriate time when the company is making good returns, with its profit margins depicting an excellent surge. This moment, the manager will gladly have a conversation with you.

2.Longevity of your work at the respective company

 

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time 

How long one has worked in a particular organization will be important when asking for a pay rise. Conventional track-lines of workers are seen as reserves for leverage towards making gains in a company. So, have a clear mind on this because many employers will look at this a factor on its own when gauging whether to award you that increment or not. To be more specific on this, no company will make salary increments for employees who have been in the workplace for less than three years.

3.Your relationship and track records

 

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previous work performance

Have you had a perfect relationship with fellow employers? How do you relate with your colleagues at work? And more importantly, how is your relationship with your boss? They said small things do count, and these are the tiny details that can hold you back from accessing that increment.

Your track record in terms of contribution to the performance of the company must be good and visible. You don’t want to have a lengthy conversation with the boss explaining how you have assisted the company in its growth curve for the time you’ve worked there. Having to explain to your boss how much effort you’ve put in your work means your performance is not visible and at the same time unimpressive.

 

 

The newly completed SGR is the ‘Ultimate Game Changer’

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A section of the newly completed Standard Gauge Railway project

A quick browse through the newly launched government website, http://www.delivery.go.ke, reveals a rather futuristic overview of just how the current leadership has foreseen the very nearing Vision 2030. With just about 12 years to the finish line of the so deemed and highly lauded development space of Vision 2030, a whole display of the branch projects , including the Standard Gauge Railway, is already on site.

The SGR, a multi billion shillings project, whose target is to improve and at the same time promote efficiency in transport service delivery between Kenya and the rest of East Africa, has a network of diverse projections at its peak. The project alone cost the government approximately Ksh.327B, but these are simply average figures.

Deeply engrossed in this one amazing yet controversial project is the absence of what many would call ‘affirmative action’ in regard to the contradiction that ensued between the environmentalists/conservationists and the government on whether the project should have a share of the re-known Nairobi National Park.  The standoff went on and on till a recent revelation from unconfirmed sources citing the continuity of the project as stated earlier, with its original route set to be fully adhered to.

 

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A section of SGR through Nairobi National Park

Perhaps a more thrilling spotlight on this railway is the significance it possesses not just on the community around but to the government as a poised entity. In the views of the public, the ease with which transportation of products to the closest market is to be enhanced is what captures their hearts most. We understand that majority of Kenyan residents are agriculturalists, so this must have been thought of deeply.

Another area that ought to be mentioned openly is that of the fast development that comes with a sudden change in infrastructural development. Businesses that pop up in the areas linked to the railway are massive and their profit margins, if not overlooked, could double in a matter of time, provided the operational environment is conducive.

‘ It takes more than eight hours to get to the Kenyan Coast, but now that time has been halved.’ Adds one of the proponents behind the railway logistics. For a normal train, in this case the traditional trains, it used to cost a lot in terms of time to travel to Mombasa. But with new modern trains, cargo and passengers will find themselves spending less than four hours on the tracks. 

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It’s bye bye for Windows Vista as Microsoft brings its use to an end

 

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windows vista becomes redundant

Users of the decade-long operating system, Windows Vista, will be compelled to make a quick substitute for their computers’s operating systems (OS) after the manufacturer opted to end its existence. The 10-year-old software which has been in use for the majority of computer gadgets that were manufactured by 2006 has been held as inheritance for many users.

A brief delve into the OS and its functionality reveal a rather user-friendly software with multiple features that had been formulated and carefully aligned to suit any intended consumer. Perhaps one of the most striking features is the interface design, which de-links truly well from the previous versions.

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windows vista user interface

The maker, Microsoft Inc., gave the new look with the speculative aspect of attracting more potential computer lovers, a narrative which came into reality when the sales margin of the new version more than tripled! With statistics indicating that it runs on more than 75% of gadgets.

In addition to the new 3D feature that would give a three-sided dimensional look of content, a sidebar to quickly switch between widgets, and the ‘Window’ Start Menu option to enable one move with ease, Vista presented a whole new dimension of  file arrangement system that to some extend didn’t match what other PC makers had put into consideration.

However, with a good reputation comes criticism, especially for a product whose use was conventional. It should be noted that Microsoft came up with Windows Vista at a time when the company was facing, what many economists will term as a ‘competing effect’. The fact still remains that Windows Vista was a hurried product and the manufacturer didn’t know the right environment and proper timing when to introduce a new product in the market. This is explained by the company’s need to remain relevant in the dynamic market and have a strong grasp of its Windows product.

Some of the criticism of the product ranged from the intensity of the much spot on interface, sluggish video games, Account Control Prompts (ACP) and disc protection for Blue-rays. Much of these critical issues were explained with much incompleteness for fear of ruining the company’s already dented image. A further understanding of this version of Windows shows a gradual evolution from Windows Vista, Windows 7. 8, 8.1 and now 10.

The fact that Vista has come to an end doesn’t mean that your computer will stop working! No. For those Kenyans still stuck with that old version of Windows (and I doubt if many folks use it anymore), don’t worry about its working. However, what lies ahead of you are security risks like malicious coding, viruses especially when linked to the internet and when you connect your computer to devices like cameras, printers, scanners etc.

/tech-wise/App-format

 

Prison Break season 5 ; A thump up or a complete flop?

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Prioson Break : Micheal Scofield and Lincoln Burrows

The earnestly awaited season 5 of the popular TV show, Prison Break is finally out and gracing our screens. The show which features a storyline based on a brother’s attempt to free his elder brother from prison after he was jailed for the murder of the Vice President’s brother, had a lively welcome during its inception, but at the moment the statistics indicate otherwise.

Prison Break began airing on 4th of April on Fox with the new episode carefully reviving its everyday characters. The four major players in the show since its inception, Michael Scofield, Sarah Tancredi, T-Bag ( Theodore Bagwell) and Lincoln Burrows, remain on the gauging scale with only the plot having a different outlook this time.

For lovers of the show, what triggers their appetite for more of it is the presence of these four characters. Which means once one among the four is eliminated, the show is likely to lose that grand support of fans thus end up fetching low on the show scenes, a fact that was replicated in the new season of 24; Legacy. Character death is a key contributor to the perpetual demise of many TV shows.

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Priosob Break 5

However, with a massive number of fans who have for more than seven years accommodated Prison Break in their minds, a repetitive narrative is a boredom ‘enticer’.   For a series with such huge investment, many fans opted for a totally different script keeping the characters constant.

What Fox did with the new script regarding the execution of this much-loved show was to retain the key characters but have a not-so –different story-line. The show just aired its first account and fans expect a dissimilar turn or twist in the subsequent episodes. Whether this production was a thumb up or thumbs down, let me know.

Read also Is Designated Survivor Kiefer Sutherland’s new 24?

 

 

 

 

How to handle a job loss

 

 

 

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Its 28th March, the time when most companies’ accountants are busier than ever: carefully detailing employees’ bank account details and ”loading” them with respective salaries. You go to work as usual keeping in mind the fact that your salary will be in your account soon.

As you walk to your office desk, the receptionist storms in your room and without a simple ”Hi” or the normal ”Good morning!”, she hands you a piece of information which openly says that the boss wants to see you in his office.

No hesitation. The two of you have known each other for quite some time and as a result, have created a rapport that can’t be shaken. You enter the office and he motions you to have a seat, this time there is no usual smile on his face. And this is when you sense something isn’t right.

”Mr. Waweru, the company wishes to relieve you of your duties starting today. A new budget scheme has been availed and therefore your services will no longer be needed. We appreciate the effort you put in your position in making this company realize its goals. Asante sana,” goes the Boss.

The first step majority of employees tend to take is sink into a deep sphere of hatred towards the boss. Anger engulfs you and you feel like cursing at him or banging the table or doing anything that will help you send to him that information about you being struck hard . This is pretty normal because of the plans you may have with that salary. But don’t worry- the hatred doesn’t last.

You know very well that you’ve been an industrious person at the company. But the fact that the company feels your services are redundant due to the changes it has made in your department, should not be a reason for you to detest anybody. We should all recognise that every company has set visions, missions and goals to be achieved. Therefore, any impediments to their progress will not be taken easily.

The following four pointers will help you in resolving your job related pesters;

Firstly, remain calm and collect yourself so that you don’t loose your integrity. Letting emotions overwhelm you once you’ve lost your job will make you loose your cool. Besides, it’s insensible to misbehave at the workplace as this will only create more problems for you.

Secondly, don’t extend the grief to anyone close to you, could be your kith and kin. Doing that could display a folk not in charge, a broken person, a fact which your kids(if you have any) will not be in right position to stand. The last thing your children would want to hear from you is ” Daddy/mum is financially unstable.

Thirdly, reboot yourself. New energy, Psyche is needed for a jobless person. Shift your mind and thoughts from your previous job and have a plan on where next to work. We all know that no work is permanent if you are a subject. And the fact that some people work for many years in an organisation without being fired, should not cloud your mind to think that there exists some similarity.

In this changing macroeconomics, the link between getting your dream job and  and the means to closing on it is so thin that majority of job seekers find themselves working in sectors where they never had their heads in. That’s why the fourth option in settling your job troubles is discovering your surplus abilities that will boost your morale in employment. Everybody has that inner concealed element of drive that pushes him/her to maximise one’s potential in every work done.

The writer is a Financial Economist at the university of Nairobi.

Willyinzobeli@gmail.com

3 questions NOT to ask during an interview

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You have been on the quest to find a new job and during your endeavors, you had the task to disseminate a many applications as possible to numerous organizations. Eventually, you landed an interview in one of the organizations. How do you prepare?

Fine. For someone who has been in the job qua-drum for a number of years and worked for different companies would be very familiar with what the employer would want to know from you. But at certain point, employers tend to change the tactics of questioning the interviewees.

Doing appropriate research about the company is so basic for any job seeker. But is that all? With the changing job market and the increasingly dynamic economy, stiffness within the employment sector is likely to be experienced. For this reason, it is advisable to know the dos and donts of an interview.

The following three questions should not feature at all before and during the interview.

1. How much is this position pay?

One last thing the employer will want to hear from you is queries about salary. An employer will be attracted to things you say about yourself and past job experience. Raising the question of payment for the job not already granted shows your interest in the salary rather than the company itself.

Instead, direct this question to the appropriate Human Resource manager. Unless the query is raised by the interviewer (which is a seldom occasion), matters to do with salary ought to be placed in your cover later with crystal indication of the future changes.

I understand some organizations may raise the question to do with salary during the interviews, especially where the organization has not displayed the payment on the job advert. If so, then properly give information that is not deceitful in relation to your CV and previous employments.

2. How long do you work in a day?

Time is a crucial element to any organization, specifically the working time bracket. But let not this fool you! A profit company that aims at making great profits will be in need of industrious employees. No company will employ sloths.

Asking this kind of question brings out a notion leaning more towards a personality that is remiss. If this is what the company portrays of you, then forget about obtaining that position. Instead, ask about the organization’s operation during work days.

Therefore, keep the question of time to your memory and following the regular scheduling of work in a company, I’m sure you’ll follow through the schedule easily(if given the job of course)

 

3. Did I get the job?

When does one know that he/she has qualified for the job one longed to get? There are many ways of knowing if you’ve qualified for the job in any organization and the most prevalent of them is getting a call. Also, the interviewer(s), after the interview is over, will take some time gauging how the interviewees performed and later will inform you if you’re best for the position. An interviewee asking for it is certainly not one of them.

You will be seen as being edgy or too ready to start working.  Again, it will sound a bit awkward especially in such a situation where you’re new to the company and the organization has not established any sort of relationship with you. To correct that, ask something simple, completely indirect but related. ‘Does this company conduct regular recruitment regarding this position?’

A full disclosure of the possibility of the organisation hiring more people will be availed to you. And this will be in the detailed explanation in such a way that the probability of you getting that job will be clearly seen.

This article first appeared on http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/campus/3 questions first time job seekers should NOT ask during interviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is Designated Survivor Kiefer Sutherland’s new 24?

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Designated survivor, season premier 

Kiefer Sutherland (pictured below), aka, Jack Bauer, has officially delegated his long term TV show, 24, to a different character. According to Fox Networks, the prime head behind the production of this show, Sutherland will be making a jostle to his new show , Designated Survivor, where he plays the role of the President as Tom Kirkman.

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Kiefer Sutherland

”He’s not even an elected member of the cabinet, he’s an architect with very specific ideas about urban planning and housing and affordable housing across the country and that’s how he became part of the cabinet,” Sutherland says.

Standing in his footsteps on the newly continuing 24 series, 24 : Legacy,  is Eric Carter, a former military man. The new show which features Mr. Sutherland as one of the executive producers, introduces Mr. Carter, whom for many lovers of Jack Bauer will deem as a new show spinner.

Circling between the shadows of terrorism and the need to save the Us from impending terror attack, Eric has the struggle left to him with minimal support being offered by CTU- Counter Terrorism Unit.

What many followers of Sutherland may not be aware of is the direct relation between the plot of these two shows. The story lines are purely similar with little notations on where one commences and the  other makes a stop.

Designated Survivor, a political thriller, puts a twist on the known fact about succession in the US political governing realm. For an eye-opener, in the event that the President, Vice President, Secretary of State and Cabinet are in one place, a ”designated survivor” must be kept at a safe and concealed  location for prompt ascension to office, should a catastrophe occur.

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Kiefer Sutherland from a scene in Designated Survivor

This particular show promises to be thrilling with the initial season receiving millions of views worldwide.

However, 24: Legacy hasn’t taken the right footing on its premiers with a large number of fans opting to exempt themselves from viewing it due to ‘death’ of main character. This is according to an online survey where about 70% of participants said they will not watch the show due to Jack Bauer’s absence.  For more unfolding information on the new series, click here  Kiefer Sutherland’s move to Designated Survivor