Tag Archives: classes

Printer Meltdown

Techie Tips Live Class This Saturday – How to Buy A Printer: Tips and Tricks

Do you find shopping for printers to be very complicated and a little overwhelming? I do too! There are so many makes, models, features, and prices!

People frequently ask me what I recommend and it’s hard to know where to start.

I recently had to buy a new printer myself, and in my haste, I made a big mistake. I learned from the experience and I decided it would be a good idea to create a class on how to go about finding the best printer for one’s individual needs and budget.

This class will teach you:

  • What to look for
  • How to do research and
  • How to shop for a new printer.
I hope you will join me this Saturday, November 18th, at 9:00 AM for this complimentary online class (in my Zoom Room)

I will show you my process, some internet tips, tricks, and answer all your questions. It will be fun!

The class will be recorded, so if you can’t attend the in person, register anyway and I will send you the link to see the recording.

Please share this invitation with your friends so they can register too.

You are invited to a Zoom meeting.

When: Nov 18, 2017, 9:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Register in advance for this meeting:

https://zoom.us/meeting/register/386200396fdbb7e04…

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Hope to see you in class!

Enjoy!

Mardi

P.S. If you’ve never used Zoom before: Zoom will automatically instruct you how to download the Zoom interface and join the session. It will only take a few seconds, and you only need to do it once. You can see a tutorial video here https://youtu.be/vFhAEoCF7jg

Advertisements

Passwords Can Be Simple and Safe

Passwords Can Be Simple and Safe

I know you hate having to use so many passwords.  It’s a big pain to keep track of them.  You might even be using the same password for multiple sites and allowing your web browser to save them so you don’t have to login every time.

A recent article by Kim Komando, inspired me to encourage you to take the bull by the horns, do some house cleaning and start using a password manager. This will make your online life so much simpler and safer.
Here are some great tips based on her article, One secret about online accounts every computer user needs to know

You may have created dozens of accounts that have only been used once. Just think of how many times you’ve created a username and password just to read an article, play a game or download something.  This can be dangerous because your information is floating around on dozens or hundreds of websites that may or may not be secure.  Even worse, if you have used the same username and password for every site, every account you have is in danger.  A hacker who gets your account information from one site can use it to get access to your other accounts as well.

The solution is to hunt down and close any accounts you are not using and then change the passwords to your existing accounts so that each one is unique.

A simple browser trick

1) When you create a new online account or log in to an old one, your browser stores the username and password. This makes it easy to log back in later.  It also means you can go now and see what accounts you’ve created.

2) After you locate your accounts, you can close down the accounts you are not using and create unique passwords for the sites you are keeping.

3) Then turn off “password storing” and erase the existing passwords in your browser. The option to erase the passwords is in the same place you view the saved passwords.  (The Instructions are below.)

Use A Password Manager

LastPass, The last password you will ever need

 

 

 

 

 

I know this seems like a lot of work but you only have to do it once.  Then, If you start using a password manager like LastPass all your unique passwords will be stored in a vault and you will only need to remember one master password.  The password manager will even generate secure passwords for you so you don’t have to think them up. You will love it!

If you need help to clean things up or to learn how to use a password manager like LastPass, I’m always here for you. Just call for an appointment.

Invite some friends to a Play Shop in your home, community room or office.  A play shop is a really fun way to learn and only costs $25 hr. per person.

Forward this tip to your friends so they will be safe and happier too.
Thoughts or comments about this topic? Please share in the comment section below.

Instructions for web browser applications:

FIREFOX

To see your login information in Firefox, go to the Firefox menu – it’s the icon on the right with three horizontal lines – and click Options.

Under the Security tab, click the “Saved Passwords” button.

Then click the “Show Passwords” button and click “Yes.”

CHROME

In Chrome, click the icon with three horizontal lines in the upper right and choose “Settings.”

Choose “Settings” on the left, and then click the “Show advanced settings” link at the bottom of the screen.

Scroll down to “Passwords and forms” and click the “Manage saved passwords” link.

If you want to log back into your old account, but don’t remember the password, then you can click on a password and click the Show button next to it.

To see the password, you will have to enter your Windows account password, which does make it harder for casual snoops to get in.

INTERNET EXPLORER

You can’t view saved usernames and passwords directly in IE. You would need a third-party program like IE PassView.  However, I recommend that you don’t use Internet Explorer anyway.  It is easily invaded by spyware. I use Google Chrome but Firefox is good also.

SAFARI

In Safari, go to Safari>>Preferences>>Auto-fill. Click the Edit button to view the saved passwords.

Need Help?

If you need help to clean things up or to learn how to use a password manager like LastPass,  I’m always here for you. Just call for an appointment.

Invite some friends to a Play Shop in your home, community room or office.  A play shop is a really fun way to learn and only costs $25 hr. per person.

Forward this tip to your friends so they will be safe and happier too.

Class Starts This Saturday

You may not know that I have another passion as a Spiritual Life Teacher and Facilitator. I’m starting a 6 week class on Saturday at The Center for Spiritual Living and thought I would post it here in case anyone is interested. I encourage anyone who might be interesed to come to the first class, learn more and then decide if they want to take all 6.

Here is the link to the details on my website. Click here

New Play Shops/Gadget Clinics Soon

Last year’s Play Shops were very fun and people asked for more of them.  Please let me know the times, days and topics that appeal to you.  We can do almost any topic that is of interest to a group of 12 to 20 people.  I do home parties too!

You can post your suggestions and comments here.

Thanks!

Mardi

Your Holiday Photos

How are you going to organize, share and protect your holiday photos this year?

Here are my recommendations:

First, and most important, is backups….

Android can back up photos to Google+ automatically.  I was surprised and amazed when my new Android phone did it.  Really great!

iPhone owners can get Dropbox and enable Camera Upload to do it automatically.  I just set this up for a client last week.  Really slick because you don’t have to plug your phone into your computer and you can share Dropbox files with others.

You might also want to occasionally make full backups onto an external drive and store it somewhere in your home or off-site.  One of my clients had spend a gazillion hours scanning 100’s of heirloom family photos after her parents died, and I showed her how to save them on flash drives for each of her siblings.  What a special Christmas gift!!!

If you just want to order prints, you can upload your photos to Walgreens’ or CVS’s website and pick them up in one hour.  You just go to their website, set up an account, upload your photos and select sizes.  It’s very clear and easy to use.  I’ve taught several clients to do this and they love it.

If you want to share your photos and order prints or other products like calendars, photo books, coffee mugs, etc., here are some other options.

2. Photobucket is a well-organized and easy-to-use photo sharing web site. You can customize and display albums, including adding music for slide shows. A scrapbook builder allows easy drag and drop organizing. You can post to most of the popular social networking and blogging sites.  There is a huge variety of cards, mugs, posters and other gift items available.  Your friends and family don’t need an account to view the photos and there are multiple privacy options available.   Web site: http://www.photobucket.com  Cost: Basic: Free; Pro: $24.95/year

6. Snapfish is a photo sharing site but with the emphasis on ordering prints and personalized gifts.  It’s well designed and easy-to-use and has online editing features to enhance photos and fix problems like red eye. It works with any device that can run a web browser. There is downloadable software available to help transfer photos from your camera.  However, there is no upload application for gadgets, so photos on phones and other mobile devices have to be e-mailed to your account.  You can set up private “group rooms” for family and friends and they can add their photos too.  I taught a client how to create a room for a trip to Hawaii with her old college friends.  She uploaded hers and then emailed and invite to the gals to do the same.  This is a great feature for group events like weddings and anniversary parties too.  Everyone can share their photos in one place and choose which ones to print.   Web site: http://www.snapfish.com  Cost: Basic: Free, plus 20 free prints when you sign-up

7. Shutterfly is another popular site for uploading photos and turning them into greeting cards, posters or calendars.  It has easy routines for uploading and sharing and free, unlimited storage space. You can create a customized web site to display and share your photos and allow others to add comments. It includes downloadable software to organize and edit your photo collection. There is a video sharing version of Shutterfly also.  You get 50 free 4×6 prints when you sign-up!   Web site: http://www.shutterfly.com  Cost: Free, and you get the 50 free prints

8. Flickr is owned by Yahoo and is one of the most popular sites for posting and sharing photos.  Now it’s offering 1 terabyte of online storage for your photos. That makes Flickr the cheapest and largest option for storing all your digital photos on “the Cloud.”  However, you will have to upload the photos manually from your hard drive.  No big deal, but it’s not automatic like with Google+ and Dropbox.

Once your photos are in, you have Flickr’s photo organizer to manage them.  If you have hundreds and hundreds of photos, and they’re roughly organized into events, you can do some sorting, searching, and set-making to get your stuff together.  You are the one who will need to name the folders, set them into the online filing cabinet, and decide which photos are worth saving, and which are just extras.

One terabyte gives you a lot of space, and your photos are away from your house and your techie mistakes.  You can store full-size, original-resolution photos.  It is the most long-term means of backing up your photos — depending on Yahoo’s long-term prospects, but Yahoo is likely to give everyone a notice to transfer their stuff if the worst comes to pass.

In Other Words, Use Flickr as the destination photo keeper–after you’ve sorted them out in iPhoto, Picasa, or other photo-sorting software.

Google+ and Picasa
Google now offers 15 GB of space for full-size photos uploaded to Google+ (shared with your Gmail and Google Drive space. That’s the middle range of free options. The tiers for upgrading are not very costly.

How do you get your photos into Google?  If you have an Android phone, you can activate “Auto Backup” (formerly dubbed “Instant Upload”) in the Google+ app. You can also tap a button to upload everything on your phone, and choose whether you’re uploading full-size or otherwise. On the computer, your best bet is to install Picasa for Mac or Windows and use it to find and upload all your photos.  You can have it search your computer, external drives, DVDs, or whatever.

As for organizing, Google does some of it for you. Photos in Google+, are broken up into broad date and location categories, so that the 50 photos you took at one beach outing are together, as are the slow trickle of personal shots snapped over a 5 or 10-day period. Each photo is auto-enhanced, and the effect is generally positive, especially for low-light and off-color smartphone shots (You can turn off the auto-enhancement). Perhaps most importantly, all the photos you “Auto Backup” to Google are stored privately by default, and you don’t have to use Google+ in any fashion to store, view, or download your images.

So use Google+ For: auto-organizing huge sets of vacation photos and Android backup.

Use iCloud and Dropbox: for just backing it all up (and for apple die-hards)

iCloud gives you 5 gigabytes of storage for all your iCloud things: documents, non-iTunes-purchased music, tiny calendar/contact things, and photos. It’s $20 per year for another 10 GB, and up to $100 per year for 50 GB.  The best part of iCloud is the seamless synchronization between your MacBook, your iPad, your iPhone, your Apple TV.  When you shoot a photo on your phone, it’s visible in the Photo Stream on all your devices, and backed up from your Camera Roll.  The best tool for organizing all those photos is iPhoto.

If you’d rather separate your photos from Apple’s cloud, or save your free 5 GB for your device backups, you can back up your photos to Dropbox. The iPhone and iPad app offers an automatic Camera Upload option that’s remarkably simple and easy to use, and it’s even polite–it scales itself back when you’re getting close to your data limit.

There isn’t any photo managing software with iCloud’s Photo Stream or Dropbox.  You have to manage it yourself, using iPhoto, Picasa, Aperture, or whatever you like best, but you can use these as a secondary backups since they give you the space for free.

In Other Words, Use iCloud/Dropbox For: Sheer peace of mind about photo storage, and easy iPhone backup.

Your own photo software and hard drives are the option you don’t appreciate enough.

Whatever huge online space you use for free, always keep a local copy–that is, something on an external hard drive at your house. Computers get coffee in them, big companies occasionally close services and discontinue features, and your memory of where everything is can be faulty. Online and auto-organized photo collections are convenient, but will your grandchildren have easy access to your Google account?

In Other Words: Always back up your own stuff at your own house. You will certainly outlast a few of these big data companies.

If you use any services or products not named here, please let me know.  I’m always eager to learn new things and share them with my clients

If this is newsletter seems like it’s written in a foreign language or you have no idea where to begin, let’s get together for some instruction.

We can do my usual private sessions or you can invite up to 7 friends to a “Play Shop” at your home or office.  (8 gadgets is the maximum for home Wi-Fi routers).  The host is free and the other participants only pay $20 for the 2 hr. play shop. (The minimum requirement is $80)  I will also be happy to do more Play Shops at the Mastermind Seminars’ office on Date Palm.  Just let me know the best days and times for you.

May you have a very, very happy holiday and take lots of amazing photos to share.

In Joy,
Mardi

“Restoring peace and joy to the world through computer education.”

This Might Surprise You

As you may know, I have not been a big fan of Facebook, and I always empathize when my clients talk about all the reasons it’s bad.  I don’t have extra time to “mess with it” either.

Well I must confess, I’m having second thoughts.  Yes, it’s true.  I downloaded the Facebook app to my smart phone, so I could see what it does.  After posting a few things on my page, I heard from people that I hadn’t been in touch with for years. They loved the photo of Katie and me at the beach this summer and it was really fun to reconnect.  Then I started seeing all the inspirational and hilarious things that my friends were posting on their pages.  It’s amazing how much love and inspiration is circulating via Facebook  Seriously!  It’s a great antidote to the news!

One of the posts that moved me to tears was a video of an 82 year old woman’s audition on “England’s Got Talent”.  (See the link below.)  I guess it moved me so much because I’m getting older, my Mother is 92 now, and I work with many amazing elderly people like her, who are enthusiastic about learning techie things. I’ts just so great to see people follow their passion right up to the end of their lives.


Watch video

Another inspiration for me was a fun lady, who had me come work with her every week last season so she could learn Facebook and keep in touch with her 4 children and 12 grandchildren.  We had so much fun!  She joked about how some of her friends spent way too much time on it and she just wanted to see all the latest photos and make short comments.  She got really good at it.  Can you imagine how much that means to the children and their parents?!  So many times, our children end up living out of state, and Facebook can really help to keep the family together.

I’m eager to share what I’ve learned and to show you how rewarding it can be.  I think you will be surprised at how much you will enjoy it.  You don’t have to spend a lot of time, or sift through a gazillion emails notifications.  I can show you how to adjust the settings to calm it down and make it manageable.

So to this end, I’m planning to offer some Facebook playshops in the new year and I hope you will join in the fun.

We can do my usual private sessions or you can invite up to 7 friends to a “Play Shop” at your home or office.  (8 gadgets is the maximum for home Wi-Fi routers).  The host is free and the other participants only pay $20 for the 2 hr. play shop. (The minimum requirement is $80)  I will also be happy to do more Play Shops at the Mastermind Seminars’ office on Date Palm.  Just let me know the best days and times for you.

I hope you are having a lovely holiday season with your loved ones.  I hope you will give Facebook a try, so you can re-connect with loved ones you haven’t seen and keep up with the ones you have.  Let’s keep that love and joy vibration going all year long!

Workshop Nov 6

1450 AM Radio
1450 AM Radio Interview

All the participants in my first smart phone workshop in iPhone IOS 7 said they really enjoyed it. I had a great time doing it and was really gratified to see how much everyone was able to learn, and how excited they were about their new skills.

By popular demand, I will be offering it again on Wednesday, November 6th from 10 AM to 12 PM at the Office of Lerner Mastermind, 34400 Date Palm Drive, Cathedral City.

The first 12 people to give me the $20 fee will be enrolled. There will be no refunds, so if you can’t make it, feel free to send someone in your place.

If you don’t have an iPhone, please pass this email along to anyone you know who might be interested.

Android fans will be happy to know that I am getting an Android phone this week and will be offering an Android workshop soon. I just need a little time to play with it and discover the best hot tips and tricks to share.

If there are other topics you would like me to cover, please let me know. I have some ideas also, which I will share soon.

I would really appreciate it if you would help me, help more people, by inviting 5-7 of your friends or colleagues to your home or office for a workshop on a topic in which you all have an interest. It makes tutoring more affordable and even more fun. You will receive your workshop for free and I will gift you an hour of private tutoring as a thank you.

These workshops are not a traditional class format. They are “Play Shops.” My goal is to empower you to learn about gadgets like children do, by taking the time to poke around and see what happens and share discoveries with each other. I will give you some background information, tips and tricks, and answer your questions. The first group felt so proud of themselves and were very pleased with the cool things they could do–just as I had promised.

My mailing address is PO Box 2392, Palm Desert, CA 92261, or you can give me the money in person. Remember, It’s “first come, first served,” so give me your $20 ASAP if you are interested.

And please consider hosting a group. Help me create more peace and joy in the world through computer and gadget education. I really appreciate your support….and your friendship.

Looking forward to “playing” with you in a Play Shop soon!

In Joy
Mardi

“Restoring peace and joy to the world through computer and gadget education.”

iPhone Workshop/Playshop

All the participants in my first smart phone workshop in iPhone IOS 7 said they really enjoyed it.

I had a great time doing it and was really gratified to see how much everyone was able to learn, and how excited they were about their new skills.

By popular demand, I will be offering it again on Wednesday, November 6th from 10 AM to 12 PM at the Office of Lerner Mastermind, 34400 Date Palm Drive, Cathedral City.

The first 12 people to give me the $20 fee will be enrolled. There will be no refunds, so if you can’t make it, feel free to send someone in your place.

If you don’t have an iPhone, please pass this email along to anyone you know who might be interested.