Networks are nice because:
- I can log in from any computer attached to the network and have access to ALL my work related files. Only files I keep on my computer are files I tinker with to teach myself new things.
- I can print to any computer in the network, from the printer behind my desk, to my boss' printer so I don't have to run all over the building to give her a document. I can tell her to go pick it up off the printer, and she doesn't mind! I haven't tried to print outside of the building yet, but I haven't had a need to either. :)
(which, makes me wonder...can our IT broadcast print to specific printers to deliver a message faster than faxing?)
- I can log into the network from multiple locations at once, without having to worry if I have to log out somewhere before logging in somewhere else. VERY helpful when I locked my PC at my home location but I'm somewhere else and someone needs information NOW.
- I can access all my documentation and notes during break in class. If I forgot something, or made a promise to double check something, I can do it within 5 minutes.
- I can turn any PC in the system to look like my own computer at my desk by keeping folders of the shortcuts I use consistantly at my desk on the network. Doesn't matter if I need to check training records, access project groups folders on a network folder, or hunt for forms, they're all within two clicks. All I got to do is copy the shortcuts folder to the desktop and I'm set. I can have 20 desks away from my desks!
- It makes me look more organized than I am. As long as my computer files are organized to where I can find them quickly...I can let my desk mess suffer just a little bit. :)
- I can share information quickly and easily, via the network with project groups, or share files with specific work groups thanks to our Intranet.
- You can search ANYTHING! Got a 114 page manual that you wrote, and everyone expects you to have it memorized? No problem, open it and search it, citing page numbers and word for word verbage. Got 100s of files, but can't locate one? Search a root directory to find the file! (and don't abbreviate file names unless it's jargon you use! You've got 256 characters to name a file, use them!)
- Thankfully I didn't have to set anything up. I just found the tools and resources available to me and I make the best uses out of them.
And on an additional nerd note, creating macro's in Word and Excel to paste plain text into documents is a life saver. Turns a 6 step process into a 3 step procces.
Now...my next exploration in Excel nerdage is to create a Excel Spreadsheet for my Pops to help manage his NASCAR Fantasy leauge. It needs to associate driver names with their values (vlookup), Total the driver values (sum), alert Pops if an "owner" total value of drivers is over 10Mil (conditional formatting), calculate team points earned (vlookup), total team points (sum). Copy team points into a list (cell equals cell), autosort the owner/team points to determine ranking/winner for each race (potential trouble), perform each of the previous functions for 36+ races a year, and have a season total points that autosorts so we know who the season leader is (potential trouble). I know Excel can sort as it's opening/closing a document, and I know you can manually sort as needed, but I want to take it one more step so that it's easier to use.
Oh yeah, and create wiki over at www.pbwiki.com to store all my nerdness in so I don't forget it all. If you don't use it, you loose it, but if you can search and find it... *taps his fingers together like Mr. Burns*...yes...yes...
That reminds me...I need to find some good sci fi/fantasy books on CD to keep my ears entertained while my mind is engaged with said projects above. www.jocolibrary.org here I come!