Getting the most out of your computer or mobile device
- Is your mouse acting too “hair-trigger”? Check the Mouse settings in your operating system – Making sure your mouse or other pointing device is working as it should for you (Windows, Macintosh, Linux)
- Setting up a “his and hers” computing environment – How to go about setting up computer equipment for shared operation while preserving a unique computing environment for each user. This is important reading for couples or families who have desktops, laptops or large tablets that they share with each other. (Windows, Macintosh, Linux, Android: 4.2 onwards)
- Why do you need to safely remove or eject removeable media – An article that explains why you need to drag the USB thumbdrive to the Trash icon on your Mac or Eject the SD card on your Windows computer when you have finished with it. (Windows, Macintosh, Linux)
PDF download-to-print available
- The Windows 10 Start Menu – Not Your Father’s Old Station Wagon – This article describes how you can get the most out of the newly-refreshed Start Menu that Windows 10 offers you. It also includes where all of the programs on the computer are by you clicking “All Apps”. (Windows: 10)
- Moving between Macintosh and Windows – Resources you need to be aware of when you switch between the Apple Macintosh platform and the Microsoft Windows computing platform. This also applies to those of us who regularly use both platforms whether at work or at home. (Windows, Macintosh)
- Identifying the end-of-support date for your Chromebook – How to know how many years left before Google stops supplying software quality updates to your Chromebook (Chrome OS)
- Apple AirDrop has a compatibility mode to cater to older Macs – You can transfer files between newer and older Apple Macintosh computers using AirDrop once you know how to invoke a compatibility mode (Macintosh: OS X Lion onwards)
- Give Your Windows 10 Mobile Smartphone A Unique Name – How to assign a unique device name to your Nokia Lumia or other Windows 10 Mobile smartphone (Windows: 10 Mobile)
- Windows 10 Tiles Not Functioning? You may have to restart Windows Explorer – How to restart Windows Explorer in Windows 10 without rebooting your computer so that the Live Tiles are properly updated. (Windows: 10)
- Creating “download-to-print” material for a distributed-printing campaign – How to effectively prepare PDF documents for others to download from your Website to print. This applies to “print-as-required” material or where you want multiple locations to print or have printed their copies of the material.
- How is software being installed on most computers – This article explains the two different main methods software developers offer their software for online distribution – the monolith single-piece file representing the program, and the lightweight install file that downloads parts of the software package relevant to the installation.
- Editing favourites with Microsoft Edge – You can now edit resources’ URLs (Weblinks) in Microsoft Edge’s Favourites Menu in-place like you can with other Web browsers by right-clicking on that resource. This will come in handy when a Website changes the online location of a resource or heads to a new domain. (Windows 10 Fall Creators Update onwards, Microsoft Edge (legacy))
- Thunderbolt dock may be behaving erratically with Windows 10. What can you do? – A simple procedure to handle a Thunderbolt 3 dock that starts to behave erratically with devices connected to it in Windows 10.
Email and Communication
- Email Essentials 1 – User Interface Types And Features – Understanding your email system’s user interface better
- Email Essentials 2 – Tasks And Tips – How to perform the basic email tasks and gain the best from your email experience
- Do You View Or Download That Picture You Received In Your Webmail – What the View or Download options are about when someone sends a picture to you via email and you receive it using a Web-based email interface.
- Should you be using multiple email accounts? – You may find that running multiple email accounts may protect your privacy, professionalism and work/life balance.
- Setting up Apple iChat for Facebook Chat and Messaging – Implementing iChat AV 3 as a Facebook Messenger client on your Mac. (Macintosh: OS X 10.3 Tiger – 10.7 Lion)
Computer and Video Games
- Moving Those Games To Another Hard Disk Without Breaking Them – How to move your games from the main hard disk to another storage device or logical partition without needing to re-download them. This is important for those of us who have two or more hard disks or solid-state storage devices connected to or installed in our computers. (Windows)
- How do I use an XBox One game controller with my Windows 10 computer? – How to connect up an XBox One game controller to your Windows 10 computer so you can use it to get the most out of your fast-paced games. (Windows 10)
- The XBox One offers dual controls for the benefit of novice game players – Setting up Copilot Mode on your XBox One or Windows 10 computer so that two XBox One controllers can be operated as if one. This is similar to “dual controls” in a driving-school’s car and can serve the same role by allowing experienced game players to help novice game players. (XBox One, Windows 10)
Audio and AV with your computer
- Managing multiple sound devices in Windows – How to deal with multiple sound devices that you are likely to connect to your Windows-based desktop or laptop computer like you Bluetooth headset, USB-enabled amplifier or HDMI-equipped flatscreen TV. (Windows: 7 onwards)
- You can rip CDs to FLAC using Windows 10’s Media Player – How you can set up Windows 10 for high-quality sound when you rip your audio CDs to file-based audio for your portable device or home network. (Windows: 10)
- Using audio-editor software to salvage legacy media – How to use the likes of Audacity along with a sound card or external sound module to get that familiar record or tape available to your home network or smartphone.
- FLAC – now the audio filetype for archival use – You can move towards FLAC as your main audio file format for most recording purposes or simply to archive your digital-audio recordings.
- Set Windows not to interrupt your presentation or movie – You can set Windows up so it doesn’t interrupt you during that presentation, game, movie or videocall. As well, you can reduce your system notification sounds’ volume when you are using the big screen and sound system for these activities. (Windows: 10)
- Photos Not The Right Way Up On Your TV – How you can be sure that the pictures you are showing on your DLNA-capable Smart TV or other video device are appearing the right way up. Here, it’s about making sure your image management software is honouring the photo-orientation metadata left by your camera or smartphone when you take that picture and it appears that way on the video device.
- Windows 10 Answers The Problem Of System Sounds Playing Through That Good Sound System – How to set up the latest version of Windows 10 to have Spotify, YouTube or your favourite game play through the home theatre without hearing the system alert sounds coming loud and clear through those speakers. (Windows 10: April 2018 Update (Version 1803) onwards)
- USB microphones or traditional mics for content creation? – Understanding the difference between USB microphones and traditional microphones for when the time comes to create podcasts or other audiovisual content
Making better use of the big screen
How you can gain better mileage out of the large-screen TV or video projector that you are connecting to your computing device.
- Web page on a big screen – How? – An article on how to show a Web page to a group of people using that big TV screen or projector. At home, this applies to showing that social-network page to your family or to show an online video service on the big TV. At business, this applies to training people about social networking for business or how to use an online service; or showing that newly-created Website. (iOS, Android, Windows, Macintosh)
- FaceTime on the big screen with Apple TV – Being able to set up a videocall hosted on Apple’s FaceTime communications platform on the big screen with your iPhone or iPad and an Apple TV (iOS: 5 onwards, Apple TV: 3rd Generation onwards)
- Showing photos on the large screen in your dual-screen setup – How to show photos or other bitmap images on a projector or other large screen connected to your computer without having to create a presentation on software like PowerPoint. This comes in handy if you want to quickly review images you took on the home or hotel-room TV or want to show photos that were previously organised and put in to a folder on that memory key. (Windows: 7 onwards)
PDF download-to-print available
- Using a TV as a computer monitor – Should you consider using a TV, especially a low-end one, as your sole computer display? This also includes how you can purpose an existing computer monitor that has integrated speakers for TV-viewing use.
Voice-driven home and personal assistants
How you can get the best out of the new voice-driven home and personal assistants including smart speakers that are part of our computing life.
- Hey Cortana! You can work with GMail – How you can get your GMail account to work cohesively with Microsoft’s Cortana. (Windows 10, Microsoft Cortana)
- You can manage your Google Home’s lighting and volume for night-time use – How to use the Google Home app’s Night Mode to make your Google Home smart speaker less obnoxious during the small hours. (Google Home)
- How you can use Amazon Alexa to measure room temperature – You can use your latest Amazon Echo device to measure indoor temperature of a particular room that it is installed in. (Amazon Alexa, Amazon Echo 4th Generation (spherical) or Amazon Echo Plus 2nd Generation (cylindrical))
Managing your voice-driven assistant to protect your privacy
- You can find out what Alexa has recorded – How you can manage what is recorded by your Amazon Echo or similar Alexa-based device — useful for privacy concerns or to troubleshoot your Echo device, deal with a misunderstood instruction or develop an Alexa Skill (Amazon Alexa)
- You can find out what Cortana has recorded – How you can manage what is recorded through your interactions with Microsoft Cortana whether on your computer or a Cortana-powered smart speaker or similar device. (Windows 10, Microsoft Cortana)
- It will be easy to use your voice to delete what you previously said to Alexa – You can set you Amazon Echo up to delete what you last said or what you said over today using your voice (Amazon Alexa)