Five things to remember:
- It's your
computer, tablet or smartphone - there's no reason why
you should have to live with clutter, awkward applications, ugly
wallpaper, or ongoing annoyances. Make it yours - learn how to put your
favourite photo on the desktop, remove icons you don't use, uninstall
'crapware', and change settings to reflect the way you want the device
- Play and explore! While I wouldn't recommend that you fiddle with, say, your car's
engine without knowing what you're doing, computers are generally more
forgiving - you can and should
feel free to play around with things on your digital devices. Just pay
attention - so you can put things back if you don't like the changes
you've made, or at least can describe what you've done.
- Most devices have a place where settings are centralized - it might be called Control Panel (in older Windows versions), Settings (in newer Windows versions, Android devices, iPhones and iPads), System Preferences (in Macs) or Menu
(on digital cameras and many other devices)... find it and spend some
time looking at the wide variety of options - many are pretty
straightforward. Feel free to make changes as seems appropriate.
- Open programs (a.k.a. 'apps') if you're not sure what they do. Look for the
program's preferences or settings. Click on menus to see what the
various options are. If you're not sure what to do, try right-clicking
(in Windows) or Control + click (on a Mac). On a touch-screen device
(smartphone or tablet) try a 'long-press' (holding your finger down on
the screen for a few seconds - longer than a tap). In many cases,
options will appear - and in some cases they will include what you want
- Google (or alternative search engine) is your friend - if you
want to know how to do something, ask! (There's especially no such
thing as a stupid question if you're asking a computer).
- (No extra charge) - if things are not working the way they should
it's always worth a try to shut down the device and restart it. Just
note that often when the screen goes black the system is still running
- it's just turned down the screen to save power. Find out how to really shut off your computer, phone, tablet or other device!
-- Alan Zisman