Firefox – Lightbeam: Behind the Scenes of Web Browsing

Lightbeam Screenshot

After surfing the web for the 20 minutes there was a lot of interesting data I discovered through Lightbeam. To start, I found that the way Lightbeam presented their data visualization was very appropriate. When you break it down, the Internet is a never-ending web of connections. In fact, I guarantee that if I continued to surf the web for another hour or two, that web would continue to grow.

I also found it interesting that as I went through my routine of web browsing, Google was always placed in the center of the web on Lightbeam. It’s not very surprising when you think about it, as Google is the number one search engine. However it did put things into perspective by forcing me to acknowledge how reliant I am on this one search engine, as it was always point A from which I branched out from while browsing the web.

Lightbeam logo
Lightbeam logo

Something that was a little more surprising to me was the amount of cookies I obtained within those 20 minutes of surfing the web. I never took the time to realize how much and how quickly websites obtain and store personal information. Although it may not seem as much, when you look at the statistics it is a little alarming. I came across 6 cookies in 20 minutes that is approximately 18 cookies per hour of web browsing, depending on the online activity. That is a lot of traceable information being sent out hourly.

The more I looked into the cookies and where they were being sent to, the more I realized how much of the deep web exists! Based on the screenshot above, I only visited 6 websites, but I was connected to 26 third party sites. I was quite shocked about this data because it made me aware of all the hidden works that goes on behind the scenes while individuals are browsing the web. Ultimately, from this entire experience, I have become more conscious of what actually occurs while I am surfing the web.

Advertisements

Using Google

screenshot of google search bar
  1. How would you search for an exact word or phrase?

To complete a Google search for an exact word or phrase, place quotation marks around the word(s). For example, “Ryerson Ramms”.

  1. How would you search for something on a specific site?

To search for something on a specific site, enter your search in the search bar followed by the syntax “site:” and the URL of the specific website. For example, fcad site: http://www.ryerson.ca

  1. How would you correctly search for a definition?

To correctly search for a definition on Google, use the syntax “define:” followed by the specific word you are looking to define. For example, define: university

  1. How would you search for a specific product available within a specific price range?

To search for a specific product available within a specific price range on Google, select the “Shopping” link under the top panel of the search result page. You will then be redirected to the shopping page where you will find a set of filters on the left panel of the page. Here you can filter your search and specify factors such as price range and seller.

  1. How would you search for a specific file type?

To search for a specific file type, type in the syntax “filetype:” followed by the three-letter file extension. For example, Ryerson student fees filetype:pdf

Google logo with a magnifying glass on top of it.

  1. How would you include or ignore words in your search?

To include words such as “the” or “I” in your search, place the word in quotations. This will tell the search engine that those words are to be included in the search. For example, “the” Giver. To ignore words in your search place the minus symbol (-) in front of the word you want the search engine to ignore. For example, movie genres –western.

  1. How would you find related pages?

To find related pages, in the Google search enter the syntax “related:” followed by the URL of the website. For example, related: http://www.ryerson.ca

  1. How would you find pages containing one of several words you are interested in, though not all of them?

To find pages containing one of several words you are interested in you must type the words in the Google Toolbar search bar. Within the Toolbar there are buttons that look like magnifying glass icons beside each word. Click on the button beside the specific word to see where the word appears on the page and continue to click the icon to cycle through all the appearances.

  1. How would you find the time in another country?

To find the time in another country type in “time” followed by the country you are interested in. For example, time Switzerland.

10. How would you find out how many Egyptian pounds you get for $20 Canadian dollars?

To search currency rates you must type the conversion in the search bar. Google will then bring you to a converter where you can manually input your desired values. For example, if you search Egyptian pounds in cad, you will be brought to a converter where you would type $20 by the value Canadian Dollar. (The answer is $130.39).

Social Media Etiquette

Social media etiquette at first glance may appear as a ridiculous phrase, however the more you ponder on this, the more legitimate the phrase becomes. In the last decade social media has become a huge part of life both personally and professionally. That being said, we must acknowledge and strive to achieve appropriate social media etiquette.

While using social media for personal use, appropriate social media etiquette is still in effect. Although many may believe that because their Twitter accounts or Facebook accounts are personal and not professional, that does not entitle individuals to do or say anything and everything. The right to freedom of speech does not give us immunity from the repercussions of our actions and words online. This is because social media is an online PUBLIC space. I feel that many people forget this fact and post thoughts and feelings as if they were thinking them in their head. Even if a user is hiding behind a pseudo name, there are many ways people can track the source and inflict the necessary consequences such as tracking through IP addresses.

As a professional being on social media, one must become even more cautious about what they post online. In fact, based on statistics from the Society for Human Resource Management, while recruiting possible applicants, 77% of employers utilize social media as part of their screening process! Consequently, you must be mindful of what you post online. Be sure that what you post is acceptable in a professional setting and will not inflict negative associations to your professionalism.

Once content is posted online it is very difficult for it to be erased from the web forever and all you need is the right person to see the wrong thing to turn your world upside down. Therefore, BE AWARE OF WHAT YOU POST BEFORE YOU CLICK POST!

 

Works Cited

FG2Squared. “Social Media Etiquette.” YouTube. YouTube, 11 Feb. 2011. Web. 09 Sept. 2014.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNnLMkg9R3c

Pozin, Ilya. “Social Media Etiquette: 12 Step Checklist.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 1 Sept. 2013. Web. 09 Sept. 2014. http://www.forbes.com/sites/ilyapozin/2013/01/09/social-media-etiquette-12-step-checklist/

Yuki, Tania. “5 Tips for Professionals Navigating Social Media.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 08 Sept. 2014. Web. 09 Sept. 2014. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tania-yuki/5-tips-for-professionals-navigating-social-media_b_5780414.html

Image Cited

Francia, Ben. Social Media Is A New Kind Of Public Space. Digital image.Benfrancia. HubSpot, 6 Sept. 2013. Web. 9 Sept. 2014. http://www.benfrancia.com/internet-marketing/social-media-is-a-new-kind-of-public-space/