Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Dragging Them Into the 21st Century Kicking and Screaming May 2010

As a confirmed computer junkie combined with a the writing itch, I am doing what comes naturally. I'm writing a blog and I am including material from a Newsletter I write on a monthly basis entitled Tech Tips. Learn and laugh at the same time. Enjoy.

This is the beginning of a regular feature dealing with technology. Much of what we do with the TetraData Warehouse
deals with computers and technology one way or the other.
In this column I hope to offer you tips and tricks so you can utilize the data warehouse and technology to it’s fullest.
This is designed for the novice user but hopefully even the most experienced user can find some helpful reminders
Tech Tip # 1 (Chill)
There are always many ways of dealing with technology and my best piece of general advice to anyone would be to
understand that if something is not working the way that you expect it work, there are usually at least 17 other ways of
doing the same thing. The point is to chill, if something isn’t working out, just try a different approach.
Tech Tip # 2 (Screen Shot/Capture)
Screen Shots or Screen Captures are a valuable resource no matter what area of technology you are dealing with. I literally use Screen Shots multiple times every single day. Here are step by step directions on how to make and utilize a
screenshot. (The goal is to be able to take a picture of something on your computer screen and use it elsewhere.) The only proviso is that it requires a great deal of concentration and hand eye coordination.. So be prepared to earn your valuable reward, it is not for the faint of heart.;)
Step 1: Open up a blank word document or any program that will display pictures or graphics.
Step 2: Find something on your computer screen that you want to take a picture of, your favorite web site for example,
for many of you I am sure it would be the PaDept of Ed. (www.pde.state.pa.us) Wherever it is, go there now.
Step 3: Look down on your keyboard and in most cases on the top right hand side of your keyboard or in the “F” row
of keys, find the Print Screen button (see below for example.) Look now, that’s ok, I’ll wait for you.
Ok your back. Good. Go back to the screen that you want to capture a picture. Once there, find the print screen button we mentioned earlier. Ok, here comes the hand eye coordination and focus skills part. Press Print Screen. Now sit back and watch the fireworks. What’s that you say, I must have done something wrong?? ;)
In all seriousness, once you have pressed Print Screen, go to the open blank word document and paste into the document
(Edit Menu/Paste or Control +V) You should see a copy of whatever was on your screen at the moment you
pressed Print Screen. How cool is that! Remember you heard it here first. (For those of you with laptops you may need to press Print Screen with your Function Key , you can tell if the Print Screen is written in Blue as opposed to the other
keys, if so, you need to press both Function and Print Screen at the same time.
I use screen shots in many ways, one way is in the design of this newsletter. I also use it to show step by step directions so that the user can follow along both with directions and pictures as well.
I joke around but in all seriousness it is an invaluable resource that I continue to find new
ways of utilizing. I would welcome hearing from you if you knew about screenshots and
on how you use screenshots. Also for the newbie's, drop me a line and let me know how this is working out for you.
Here are some websites that offer directions on how to do screenshots.
http://take-a-screenshot.org/ http://www.iopus.com/guides/screenshot.htm
http://graphicssoft.about.com/od/screencapturemac/ht/macscreenshot.htm
Of course as the culmination of a teachable moment I must include a Screenshot. So I am including a screenshot of a screenshot. Very existential isn't it. For those of you that
have been paying attention, you may notice something different about this screenshot. You may be wondering if this picture was totally filling up my screen when I pressed Print Screen. You will have to wait for the May edition to learn the exciting conclusion of “HOW DO I TAKE A SCREENSHOT? THE SEQUEL”
DRAGGING THEM KICKING AND SCREAMING INTO THE 21ST CENTURY!

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