The Economista: Tech Break

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Welcome to The Economista! Brought to you by your first-year blogger/new best friend Karine Liu, The Economista is a blog for the budget-conscious Brunonian! Check back here each week for the tips and tricks that’ll have you rolling in your own sea of green out on the Main Green in no time!

College is expensive, plain and simple. Beyond the mammoth of tuition, there’s the cost of books, food, clothes, very necessary cleaning supplies and more; you might seriously be wondering if your pocket has a hole in it that money is just falling out of. Yet Brown saves us some serious cash on the technology front by the software that’s available for free for us Brunonians. Here’s three digital resources that’ll beef up your laptop AND your wallet:

  1. Microsoft Everythang

In a world where writing a “paper” really means smashing laptop keys to form pixels onto a white rectangle, having an arsenal of office programs is as just necessary as having an email password you can remember. There’s nothing more embarrassing than strutting up to a computer to load up your animation-filled, sound-effects-enhanced PowerPoint presentation, and getting the dreaded “The file cannot be opened” alert. Thankfully, Brown gives its students the full Microsoft Office 365 Suite for the low, low price of nothing. Now you can rest assured that your work assignments/products of all-nighters at the SciLi can be fully appreciated.

  1. Get with the (New York) Times

While it’s tempting to stay within the confines of the Brown bubble, there is a quick and easy way that you can stay up-to-date on the happenings of the world: read the New York Times. Through Brown, you get an nytimes.com Academic Pass for an entire year: this means complete NYTimes articles at your fingertips anywhere you go! What is super helpful is the daily “Today’s Headlines” email that gives the essentials of the news. Scrolling between that and Morning Mail will definitely prepare you for the rest of your day!

  1. Meet Rosetta (Stone)

Learning a new language at Brown is seriously an amazing opportunity, but there are times when you just can’t fit both Introductory Polish and Basic Chinese. Probably realizing that its students are secret polyglots-in-training, Brown has made the extremely popular Rosetta Stone program free and even available online. With 30 languages to choose from and a mobile app to boot, Rosetta Stone is perfect for those quick in-between classes breaks when you’re tired of scrolling through Facebook/Instagram/Twitter for the hundredth time and you’re interested in finally knowing how to properly say “croissant”. Impressing your friends by knowing how to say “Chicken Finger Friday” in 30 different languages isn’t a bad reason either.

As you can probably tell, Brown really wants you to get in touch with your inner techie side. These are only three of the many digital perks available to Brown students, and you should take advantage of them while you still can, even if that means spending a chunk time in front of a computer screen (not that you do that already, or anything). Happy web-browsing and please remember to go outside!

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for any topics you’d like to see covered by The Economista, email me at karine_liu@brown.edu! See you next week!

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