The Complete Idiot's Guide to Computer Basics

Author(s): Joe Kraynak


This updated edition of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Computer Basics" aims to help beginners develop their computer skills more effectively by teaching them a set of practical, essential tasks on their PC.


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Joe Kraynak has taught hundreds of thousands of new PC users how to make the most of their PCs with his easy-to read books. Joe has been writing and editing successful training manuals and computer books for over ten years. His long list of computer books includes The Complete Idiot's GuideA (R) to PCs, The Complete Idiot's GuideA (R) to Microsoft Office 2000, Big Basics Book of Windows 98, More Easy Windows 98, and Sams Teach Yourself Notebook Basics in 10 Minutes.

I. FIRING UP YOUR COMPUTER: BARE-BONES BASICS. 1. Setting It Up and Turning It On. Finding a Comfortable Home for Your Computer. Unpacking Your New Toys. Making the Right Connections. Bringing the Beast to Life. Installing the Software That Runs Your Hardware. Now What? Shut It Down or Leave It On? 2. Meeting Windows: Up Close and Personal. The Windows Nickel Tour. The Land Where Mouse Is King. The Keyboard Is Special, Too. Ordering from Menus and Dialog Boxes. Bypassing Menus by Using Toolbar Buttons. Rearranging the Windows Inside Windows. What's on Your Computer? Trashing Files in the Recycle Bin. Help Is on Its Way. 3. Launching Your First Program. Picking a Program from the Start Menu. More Creative Ways to Run Programs. Moving a Program to a More Convenient Location. Running Programs with a Single Click. Opening Documents with a Single Click. 4. Warming Up with Some Computer Games. Installing and Running the Windows Games. Using Your $1,000 Computer as a $1 Deck of Cards. Becoming a FreeCell Junkie. Playing Hearts with Virtual Players. Taking a Virtual Risk with Minesweeper. Pinball and Internet Games in Windows Me. PERSONALIZING YOUR WORK SPACE. 5. Using a Cool Desktop Background. Animating Your Desktop with Themes. Messing with the Screen Color. Hanging Wallpaper in the Background. Controlling the Desktop Icons and Visual Effects. What's This Web Tab For? Locking Your Desktop Settings. Securing Some Privacy with a Screen Saver. 6. Making Your Computer Play Cool Sounds. Checking Your Audio Equipment. Choosing a Different Sound Scheme. Assigning Specific Sounds to Events. Listening to CDs While You Work. Recording Your Own Audio Clips. 7. Taking Control of Your Menus and Programs. Rearranging the Start Menu with Explorer. Making Your Own Toolbars. Turning on the Desktop Toolbar. Transforming a Folder into a Toolbar. Automating Your Programs. 8. Giving Yourself More Room to Work. Clearing Desk Space by Making Everything Smaller. What About the Color Settings? Rearranging Your Desktop Icons. Getting Rid of Icons You Don't Use. Hiding the Taskbar. Tucking Stuff in Folders. 9. Installing and Removing Programs. Buying Software That Your Hardware Can Run. Do You Have Enough Disk Space? Installing Your New Program. Does Anyone Use Floppy Disks Anymore? Removing a Program That You Never Use. III. CREATING LETTERS, GREETING CARDS, AND OTHER DOCUMENTS. 10. I Just Want to Type a Letter! Making the Transition to the Electronic Page. What's with the Squiggly Red and Green Lines?! Inserting Today's Date. Making the Text Bigger or Smaller. Shoving Text Left, Right, or Center. Changing the Line Spacing. Inserting Space Between Paragraphs. Save It or Lose It. Printing Addresses on Envelopes. 11. Editing and Printing Your Letter. Selecting Text. Cutting and Pasting Without Scissors. Oops! Undoing Changes. Checking Your Spelling and Grammar. Setting Your Margins and Page Layout. Setting the Page Margins. Picking a Paper Size and Print Direction. Where's Your Paper Coming From? Laying Out Your Pages. Saving Paper: Previewing Before Printing. Sending Your Letter off to the Printer. Hey, It's Not Printing! Project Time! Making Your Own Letterhead. 12. Designing Personalized Greeting Cards, Banners, and Other Publications. What You Need to Get Started. Starting with a Prefab Greeting Card. Microsoft Publisher Survival Guide. Playing with Pictures. Text in a Box. Layering Pictures and Text Boxes. Do-It-Yourself Banners. Other Cool Desktop Publishing Stuff. 13. Creating an Address Book and Other Listy Stuff. Tables, Spreadsheets, Databases, and Address Books. Making a Simple Address Book with a Word Table. Using an Electronic Day Planner. Automating Calculations with Spreadsheets. Managing Records in a Database. Setting Your Own Table. Typing in the Little Boxes. Rearranging and Resizing Columns and Rows. Adjusting the Row Height and Column Width Inserting and Deleting Columns and Rows Sorting Your List Automating Calculations with Formulas Decorating Your Table with Lines and Shading What About Pictures? 14. Form Letters, Mailing Labels, and Envelopes. The Incredible Power of the Mail Merge Feature. The Making of a Form Letter. Inserting the Secret Codes. Initiating the Merge Operation. Printing Addresses on Mailing Labels. Printing a Stack of Envelopes for Mass Mailing. IV. GETTING WIRED TO THE INTERNET. 15. Connecting to the Outside World with a Modem. What Can I Do with My Modem? How This Modem Thing Works. Modem Types: Standard, ISDN, DSL, and Cable. Connecting Your Modem to an Outside Line. Dialing Out: Does It Work? Troubleshooting Your Modem Connection. 16. Finding an Information FREEway. Getting a Free Trial Offer to an Online Service. Signing Up for Your Membership. Getting Help Online. Canceling Your Membership. Finding Cheaper, Better Ways to Connect to the Internet. Setting Up Your Internet Connection. Testing Your Internet Connection. What Went Wrong: Internet Connection Troubleshooting. 17. Sending E-Mail: Postage-Free Same-Day Delivery Running Your E-Mail Program for the First Time. Addressing an Outgoing Message. Checking Your E-Mail Box. Sending Replies. Adding Photos and Other Cool Stuff. Attaching Documents to Your Messages. What About Hotmail and Other Free E-Mail Services? E-Mail Shorthand and Emoticons. E-Mail No-No's. E-Mail Security. 18. Chatting with Friends, Relatives, and Complete Strangers. Hanging Out in Chat Rooms. Checking Out the People Who Are Checking You Ou. Sending Private Messages. Making Your Own Public Chat Room. Chatting It Up on the Internet.Chatting Privately with Friends and Relatives on the Internet. What About Audio and Video? 19. Poking Around on the Web. First, You Need a Web Browser. Steering Your Browser in the Right Direction. A Word About Web Page Addresses. Finding Stuff with Popular Search Tools. Opening Multiple Browser Windows. Going Back in Time with History Lists. Marking Your Favorite Web Pages for Quick Return Trips. Changing the Starting Web Page. Can Cookies Hurt Me? 20. Shopping, Investing, Traveling, and Other Cool Web Stuff. Keeping Up on News, Weather, and Current Events. Mail-Order Paradise: Shopping on the Web. Becoming Your Own Stockbroker. Planning Your Next Vacation. For Movie Buffs Only. Creating Your Own Music Library. Getting Technical Support for Your Computer. 21. Publishing Your Own Web Page in Ten Minutes or Less. What Makes a Web Page So Special? Forget About HTML. Making a Personal Web Page Right on the Web. Placing Your Business on the Web. Finding Cool Stuff to Put on Your Page. V. KIDS AND OTHER HOMEY STUFF. 22. Managing Your Finances. Choosing a Personal Finance Program. Mastering the Basics. Budgeting 101. Planning Ahead with Financial Calculators. Electronic Banking 101. Tracking Your Investments Online. 23. Finding and Playing Cool Games. Shopping for the Right Games. Additional Equipment You Might Need. Running Stubborn DOS Games in Windows. Getting Free Games from the Web. Buying Games Online. Finding Game Reviews and Tips. 24. Tapping the Power of Educational Software. Researching Topics with Multimedia Encyclopedias. More Books for Your Reference Library. Learning to Read with Your Computer. Reinforcing Math Skills. Encouraging Your Child to Play with Language. Learning to Play the Piano. Learning a Foreign Language. Bringing Out the Artist in Your Child. 25. Safely Introducing Your Child to the Internet. Explaining the Rules of the Road. A Little Personal Supervision Goes a Long Way. Censoring the Internet. Playing Games Online. Visiting the White House. Visiting Museums and Libraries. Helping Your Child Find a Pen Pal. 26. Making a Family Photo Album. Getting a Kodak Picture CD. Adding Photos from Another Kodak Picture CD. Enhancing and Editing Photos. Typing Your Own Captions. Printing Your Photos on Photo-Quality Paper. Sharing Photos Via E-Mail and Disk. Avoiding the Middleman with a Digital Camera. Scanning Photos. Creating Your Own Digital Photo Album. Changing Yourself and Others with Morphing. 27. Drawing Your Family Tree. Picking a Good Genealogy Program. Plugging in Names, Dates, and Relationships. Digging Up Your Roots with CD-ROM Databases. Researching Your Family Tree Online. Growing Your Family Tree. Printing Your Family Tree. VI. TINKERING WITH COMPUTER GADGETS AND GIZMOS. 28. Playing Digitized Music Clips. Understanding CD and MP3 Audio Basics. Using Your Computer as a Jukebox. I Want My MP3: Downloading Music Clips from the Web. Burning Your Own Audio CDs. 29. Managing Your Life with a Palm Computer. Understanding Subcompact Computers. Palm Data Entry 101. Connecting Your Palm Computer to Your Desktop Computer. Getting Additional Software and Games. Accessorizing Your Portable Device. 30. Watching TV and DVD on Your Computer The Convergence of TV and Computers. Tuning in with Windows. Can I Play Interactive Games? Playing DVD Videos on Your Computer. 31. Playing Film Editor with Digital Video. What You Need to Get Started. Setting Up Your Audio-Video Equipment Capturing and Saving Your Clips. Splicing Your Clips into a Full-Length Movie. Adding an Audio Background. Smoothing Out Your Transitions. Saving Your Movie. Sharing Your Movies with Friends and Relatives. 32. Upgrading for Voice Commands and Dictation. What You Need to Get Started. "Testing, One, Two, Three": Checking Your Sound System. Installing Your Speech Recognition Software. Training the Software to Recognize Your Voice. No-Hands Typing with Dictation. Entering Voice Commands. VII. MAINTAINING YOUR INVESTMENT. 33. Keeping Your Computer Clean. Tools of the Trade. Vacuuming and Dusting Your Computer. WASH ME: Cleaning Your Monitor. Shaking the Crumbs Out of Your Keyboard. Thrills and Spills. Making Your Mouse Cough Up Hairballs. Cleaning Your Printer (When It Needs It). What About the Disk Drives? 34. Giving Your Computer a Tune-Up. One-Stop Optimization with the Maintenance Wizard. Clearing Useless Files from Your Hard Disk. Checking for and Repairing Damaged Files and Folder. Defragmenting Files on Your Hard Dis. Making Windows Start Faster. Boosting Performance with Shareware Utilities. APPENDIXES. Appendix A. Glossary: Speak Like a Geek. Appendix B. More Computer Resources for the Computer Enthusiast. Index.

General Fields

  • : 9780028642307
  • : pearson
  • : pearson
  • : 0.768
  • : July 2001
  • : 232mm X 187mm X 25mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Joe Kraynak
  • : Paperback
  • : 2nd Revised edition
  • : 004
  • : 456
  • : illustrations