Information Technology Training

Written by Shirley Parker
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The impact of Information Technology or IT Training is woven throughout the world of work. It encompasses so many different programming languages and a huge variety of software applications and hardware hookups. Information Technology isn't going to go away. Not only are we in an Information Revolution, it is taking place at a rate and range unprecedented in earlier social changes.

Through the contributions of those who have educated themselves by undergoing IT training, we conduct business and commerce, perform scientific experiments, navigate through the stars and around planets, and explore the deepest haunts of the oceans. We also take care of the ill and injured among us, teach the next generations, and keep track of the needy, both human and animal. In addition, we predict the weather and police the environment, fly planes and sail ships, and transport people and goods on our rails and highways. Not to be left out are the fuels we produce, the skies and borders we protect, and the agriculture and animal husbandry we monitor and modify. All these fields of endeavor in a highly interrelated world require computer capacity and speed to accomplish.

Information Technology Training encompasses such legacy programming languages, as COBOL (used in business-oriented report generation), FORTRAN (used for complex scientific and engineering calculations), and RPG (used for database access). These languages still undergo modification to interface with newer applications now considered essential to their respective sectors. Although even post-1977 Fortran, in particular, is often thought to be at death's door, in spite of its many specialized versions, this is not the case. The old languages retain their specific niches in computer science.

IT Training Covers a Lot of Ground

IT Training also extends to structured languages such as C, which is widely used in many computing environments, perhaps best known for being the language of the UNIX operating system. However, its many other environments include the PC, Macintosh and mainframe systems. C*, called a dialect of C, is used for parallel or multi-programming. Another derivative of C is C#, a programming language capable of standing alone, but which is also quite closely tied in with Microsoft Common Language Runtime (CLR). C++ is a complex but often used object-oriented language derived from C.

Java is a fairly straightforward object-oriented language that came from Sun Microsystems and its research staff in the mid-1990s. In some ways it resembles C++, but also borrows from other languages and programming systems. As a rule, Java is compiled to be platform-independent, requiring a Java Virtual Machine to interpret the resulting byte-codes.

Other highly useful and in demand programming classes include those that teach scripting languages such as Perl, JavaScript and VBScript. Project Management training is almost a required investment; without it, projects are unlikely to come in on time or be successful. Microsoft Windows is far from being the only operating system (OS) nowadays: SunOS and Solaris, z/OS, Linux and various iterations of UNIX are thought of highly by those in the know.

Getting It All to Work Together

Another topic covered in IT Training is database management. Applications include Oracle (Oracle Corp.), DB2 (IBM Corp.) and Access (Microsoft Corp.). Computers must also be able to talk to each other within and across networks, even though manufactured by a long list of different companies. One protocol to enable the communication is TCP/IP or Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol.

Then there is the hardware needed to transmit the data. Cisco Systems manufactures routers, bridges, and switches and is probably the top producer of network equipment. Certainly their certification programs are among the most difficult credentials to earn.

Some IT Training topics have a large number of books, videotapes, CDs and other resources available for purchase for self-study. Online classes from various university and commercial sources charge a range of fees for education that varies in quality. Computer-related classes are also taught in full-time academies that specialize in Information Technology, as well as in evening classes.

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