Dave's Tips

I have found that there are two basic approaches to computing:

  1. Fear - Fear leads to people making mistakes, especially with malicious software or websites. Fear causes people to act before thinking something through. Do NOT be afraid. If you are stumped or afraid, do NOT act before asking someone like me.

  2. Inquisitiveness - Be a sleuth. Keep an eye out for clues. Try to think how things might work intuitively. Try things and remember Undo (on the edit or organize menu) can Undo many mistakes on a computer from accidentally deleting a sentence or a file you need. Use resources to look for answers and ASK your tech guru for help as they will have answers if they are good.

Ask before you buy!

  • If you buy first - You are highly likely to get less value for your money if you have a good tech advisor and don't an them first. I have seen many regretable decisions that at best end up as wasted time in retunr lines and at worst, an investment in technology that was absolete before it was purchased.

  • If you ask an expert first - You are much more likely to be happy with your purchase and get the right equipment for your needs! Remember: Salespeople may have some expertise, but their goal is to get the largest commision, not the best product for your needs or the best value!

Beware of scams!

  • Email phishing - Once again, Fear leads to people making mistakes. Fear causes people to act before thinking something through. Do NOT be afraid. Do NOT act before asking someone like me. The easiest thing to do is hover over the link for any task they want you to do like re-enter your account information, and see what appears on the bottom status bar of your email application or browser window. Usually, the actually link is displayed there and you can immediately see if it leads to the applicable company or some scam page. Never click links that lead anywhere, except the company's website, and for good measure, just go login to their website as you would normally do and see if there is a problem as described once you login.

  • Website Links for Free Software, Coupons, Racy Stories, etc - Walk cautiously through the world wide web! Everything has a price and malware infections can hit you fast and overwhelm your browser, often taking control or bringing your experience to a crawl! Don't trust unknown sources! If your screen suddenly says that you are infected and/or produces an alarm telling you to call them to remove the infection, it is a scam! Just force quit your browser: press [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[Del] in windows to bring up access to the task manager and open it, find your prowser on the list of processes and choose to "End Ttask". In a Mac, choose Force Quit for the Apple menu and choose the browser. If the same bad web page keeps reopning every time you open the browser, open it in safe mode by pressing and holding [Shift] and then clicking on its icon.

Learn keyboad shortcuts for things you do a lot!

  • Menus show keyboard shortcuts - When you click on a menu, keyboard shortcuts are listed to the right of many commands. Many commands are universally purposeful in Windows and Macs so knowing them is a great time saver. Here are some great examples:
    Note: substitute the    key for the Control key [Ctrl] on a Mac.

    [Ctrl]+[C] = Copy
    [Ctrl]+[X] = Cut
    [Ctrl]+[V] = Paste
    [Ctrl]+[A] = Select All
    [Ctrl]+[Z] = Undo
    [Ctrl]+[S] = Save
    [Ctrl]+[Q] = Quit or Exit
    [Ctrl]+[P] = Print
    [Ctrl]+[O] = Open
    [Ctrl]+[N] = New document
    [Ctrl]+[F] = Find or Find and Replace
    [Ctrl]+[→] = Jump one word to the right
    [Ctrl]+[←] = Jump one word to the left
    [Ctrl]+[↓] = Jump one paragraph down
    [Ctrl]+[↑] = Jump one paragraph up
    [Ctrl]+[Home] = Jump beginning of document
    [Ctrl]+[End] = Jump end of document
    [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[→] = Select one word to the right
    [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[←] = Select one word to the left
    [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[↓] = Select one paragraph down
    [Ctrl]+[Shift]+[↑] = Select one paragraph up
    [Ctrl]+[Alt]+[Delete] = In Windows, gain access to Task Manager to force quit (End Task) for any program that freezes or becomes unresponsive.

Download a PDF of the Above Examples Download a PDF Showing How to Create Accents and Symbols

More tips coming soon. Check back or feel free to email me if there is something you'd like me to give a tip about.

© 2019 David Stein