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In the modern world, technology is a nearly unavoidable aspect of our daily lives. From the way we communicate and work to the necessities we use every day, we rely on basic technical skills at nearly every turn. Yet, when considering a career in tech, many feel intimidated by the idea and think they lack the technical skills and ability to excel in or even enter the industry. But here’s the secret: most of us know more about tech than we think we do.

Communicating Online

Believe it or not, talking to friends, family, and coworkers through social media, text messages, and email is one of the simplest ways to develop basic technical skills. First and foremost, these platforms allow you to gain digital literacy, or the ability to use and understand digital technology through devices, applications, and online resources. They’re also great for enhancing multimodal communication, since texts, email, and social media often integrate images, videos, and other multimedia all within one message.

Protecting Your Privacy

Chances are you know a thing or two about online privacy and security. In today’s day and age, knowing what kind of online scams are out there and how to protect yourself from them is an essential skill. You know that the passcodes on your phone and the passwords for your accounts should all be unique to help protect your personal information. You may even rely on two-step authentication for your accounts to add an extra layer of security between you and unwanted access to your account. All of these precautions are real-world cybersecurity skills.

Troubleshooting Personal Devices

If there’s one guarantee with technology, it’s that it will eventually run into issues. Since we rely on technology for nearly everything, it’s critical to understand how to set up new devices and troubleshoot problems on your own. After all, you won’t always have the option to wait a couple of days for your internet provider to fix your Wi-Fi connection. If you know why and how to reboot routers and modems, clear caches, and perform hard and soft reboots, you’ve already got a handle on basic technical skills.

Updating Devices and Systems

Our phones, computers, tablets, and even gaming systems require us to install programs or initiate updates. Understanding how to handle these procedures is a skill on its own. Frequently using these devices helps us adapt these skills across all sorts of platforms, even when interfaces change.

Using AI Tools and Algorithms

Engaging with AI in daily life is a lot more common than you might think, especially now. If you have ever used ChatGPT from Open AI for research or played around with tools like Bing Image Creator to make funky art, you’ve dabbled with AI. But those aren’t the only examples of AI in everyday life. From TikTok’s For You Page algorithm to Instagram’s feed or YouTube’s home screen, social media platforms rely on AI to gather information about your likes and dislikes to create recommended content that it thinks you are most likely to interact with. Even the voice assistants on your phone and the chatbots you talk with on websites or calls use AI systems.

Want to Get Into Tech?

No matter who you are or what your background is, there’s a place for you in tech. At TechBuffalo, our mission is to connect students, graduates, and adult learners across Western New York with college programs, job opportunities, and training bootcamps. If you have any interest in pursuing a future in tech, including IT, data science, cybersecurity, tech support, or any other tech-adjacent field, don’t be afraid to reach out or sign up for our newsletter!

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