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Blog // Connect Iowa

Here Comes Santa Claus: The Jolly Old Man’s Broadband Blip

By Jeremy Thacker

Santa Claus is coming to town. And now, thanks to broadband, you’ll know exactly when to expect him! Jolly Old St. Nick is preparing the sleigh for his big night of round-the-world work. And, as soon as he takes to the sky, you’ll be able to track his travel with military precision. NORAD is the military organization responsible for the aerospace defense of the U.S. and Canada. And now, the North American Aerospace Defense Command is tracking Santa on Christmas Eve. The “NORAD Tracks Santa” app is available on Apple products, Android, and social media sites. The agency offers information by phone and online about St. Nick's location....

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How Technology is Fostering Unconventional Alternatives in Education

By CIA Staff

The Wall Street Journal produced an informative article on current trends in telelearning. More kids than ever before are attending school from their living rooms, bedrooms and kitchens. The result: A radical rethinking of how education works. An excerpt from the story is below: It was nearing lunchtime on a recent Thursday, and ninth-grader Noah Schnacky of Windermere, Fla., really did not want to go to algebra. So he didn't. Tipping back his chair, he studied a computer screen listing the lessons he was supposed to complete that week for his public high school—a high school conducted entirely online. Noah clicked on his global-studies...

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Your Computer Skills Help Lighten the Tax Load

By Jeremy Thacker

You have the power to help make the IRS experience a lot less taxing this year. The Internal Revenue Service is looking for volunteers to assist in preparing tax returns for 2011 at various sponsored sites throughout the state. It’s called the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program. Individuals with good computer skills are especially needed to assist in preparing and transmitting returns electronically through the IRS E-file program. Volunteers of all ages and backgrounds are welcome. All volunteers receive tax training in cooperation with community partners and the IRS. Volunteers are needed as Return Preparers, Site Coordinators,...

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