Use Headsets When Making Calls From Your Computer

I have found that it is much easier to make calls using headsets. This is so for cell phones and computers. In the case of computers, relying on the microphone and desktop speakers alone does not always give the best results. The microphone generally picks up any ambient noises that are easily entwined in the audio being sent to the person on the other end of the line. There is also some level of sound loss when you have to listen through the speakers. Using a headset eliminates 98% of those problems.

When you have the speakers right up to your ears, there is no loss of audio, or very little, since there is no space for external noises to interrupt through. The microphone would also be closer to your mouth, making your words more understandable. Many professionals use headsets as they enhance the quality of their work. Making calls from your computer using a headset is a smart way of communicating effectively with the person on the other end of the line. You do not have to spend a lot of money to get quality headsets. Get one that is within your budgetary range.

Smart File Locations

A problem that many people face is forgetting what files are in what folders. I used to have that problem until I decided that filing them according to specific directory names was the way to go. Simply put, I now put related files in related directories. I remember the days when I had software, games, and documents all in one folder. I cannot count the days I had a headache. Now, with a lot more organization, the headaches are fewer (mainly stress related now) and finding files are much easier. I am sure that other persons who used to share the same agony are now benefitting from a more organized filing system.

It is quite easy to put your files in related directories. For example, if you have documents that are recipes, they can be put in a folder or directory called “Recipes” (strictly common sense). Or if you have games, you can put them in a directory called “Games”. To be even more specific, you may have action games and role playing games. They can be put into “Action Games” and “RPG Games” directories respectively. I think you get the drift. So make it easier on yourself and place your files in directories that have names related to their contents. This way you will know exactly where to go and find the files you want.

Screen Savers Save Your Screen

Have you ever seen some screens where there seems to be images or writing permanently fixed to them? This is called image burn-in and occurs when a monitor is left on for long periods without being turned off. In more specific cases, if the same image is constantly shown, over time it becomes burnt onto the screen. To prevent this from happening, you need to use a screen saver. Screen savers are images or graphics that move all over the screen, thus preventing burn-in as there is no set position for it on the screen.

Burn-in can be solved quite easily, of course depending on the severity. This can be accomplished by showing a white background on the screen for a protracted period of time. This is a time consuming remedy though which can be prevented by using a screen saver. So screen savers are very important. Never discount their usefulness. If you are not using one now, make sure you start doing so by the end of the day. Just as the name suggests, it will save your screen.

Printer Not Recognized By Windows OS

Printers, like many other devices, have connectivity problems at times. This is regardless of the type and make of the printer. The reasons why this may happen are varied and normally linked to the Windows Operating System. This can be a frustrating thing as this problem tends to occur more frequently when someone wants to do a printing job in a hurry. It also occurs when a printer is being newly installed onto a computer. There are a number of things that you can check to troubleshoot the problem and hopefully get a resolution.

Here are a few things you can check:

1. There may not be any power going to the printer. Some printers need to be on in order for the OS to recognize it. Ensure that the printer is on. Even those that may not need to be on must have the power cord attached to the printer and plugged into an outlet.

2. The cable that connects the printer to the computer (USB, Serial, FireWire) may not be connected. Check to make sure that it is connected.

3. Some printer drivers need to be installed before the printer is connected. If this is the case, install the drivers before connecting the printer.

4. Before buying a printer, ensure that it has drivers that are compatible with your operating system. If there are no compatible drivers, you will have problems getting the OS to recognize the printer or it will let you know that there are no compatible drivers for it.

This checklist is in no way exhausted. These are simply the major reasons why a printer may not be recognized by your computer. Other reasons are varied and are dependent on a users experience and knowledge level. In most cases, common sense solves the problem, but there are issues that are sometimes difficult to resolve. However, the above-mentioned should help you to resolve the problem.

Monitor Placement

How you set your monitor can have an impact on your level of comfort when you are using the computer. If your monitor is too high you can hurt your neck because of the strain that is being put on it to look up for extended periods. If the monitor is too low, it can also affect your neck, especially the back part, as it becomes strained from being held down in one position for an extended period. Your eyes can also become tired from viewing the monitor at odd angles. When using a computer for extended periods, it is imperative that you set the monitor at an angle and height that are comfortable for your viewing purposes. Each person has a different “comfort zone” as it relates to the position.

In order to find your perfect viewing angle, sit in front of the monitor in the position you would normally be set while doing work on the computer. Then place both hands on either side of the monitor to adjust the height (if the height is adjustable) or swivel the monitor back and forth and left and right to a position that makes your eyes feel relaxed. Once you have found the correct position, sit back in your chair and try typing a little bit or try reading some emails. Do this for about ten minutes. As you go through the process, you may realize that you need to make further adjustments to the monitor. Continue doing this until you feel that both your neck and eyes feel relaxed while you work. You have now found your “comfort zone”.

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Windows Shortcut Keys

Going to a menu heading in a spreadsheet program can be quite a task for some people. In fact, because of this same reason, many people do not save their documents until they are completely finished, which in a lot of cases results in loss of material. Even though there is an auto-save feature in most modern programs, not all people use it. In light of this, Windows has shortcut keys that one can use to perform operations that are regularly carried out when a document is being written, etc. There are shortcut keys for tasks like saving, cutting, pasting, copying, printing, asking for help, and so on.

Here are a few shortcut keys that can be used whilst working in the Windows operating system environment:

Ctrl + Insert = COPY
Shift + Insert = PASTE
Ctrl + P = PRINT
Ctrl + I = ITALIC
Ctrl + B = BOLD
Ctrl + S = SAVE
Ctrl + Z = UNDO
F11 = Toggle between FULL SCREEN and NORMAL SCREEN (browser window)

Mouse Problems

computer mouse
Had any mouse problems lately? I realized a few days ago that my mouse was doing its own thing, going all over the screen and jumping and running, without my intervention. I knew it was not a virus because I did a complete scan and everything was fine. The problem was that my mouse was “dying”. It was very hard to control where I wanted to click and so on. So I decided to change the mouse and – volia! – problem solved. Be aware that there are times when a virus can be the cause of your mouse behaving abnormally, but fortunately for me that was not the case.

Generally a mouse responds to how you move your hand. The speed of the pointer movement can be adjusted in the Mouse settings under Control Panel. So too can the click and double-click speeds. If your mouse has started behaving in a manner that it never used to before, first perform a virus check on your computer. If that checks out okay, buy a new mouse. More often than not it will solve the problem.

Air Flow Through Computers

Air flow is very important when using a computer or any other device that dissipates a lot of heat. This is because heat build up over time can severely damage parts or components of the device if the dissipated heat is not drawn away from them. In a computer for example, the CPU and Power Supply give off a lot of heat. That is why the CPU is usually mounted on a heat sink with a fan on top of it so as to allow the heat to be properly removed away from the CPU. Also, the Power Supply has a fan mounted to the back which pulls the heat out of it and also assists in air flow through the computer.

Having secondary fans inside the chassis is very important as they help to keep the air flowing, bringing in cooler air while taking out the hotter air. Some people put two extra fans inside the chassis of the computer. One is mounted at the front of the chassis to suck in fresh air while the other is placed at the back to pull out the hot air. Both fans work in tandem – as one pulls air in the other draws air out. This continuous movement of air helps keep the components in the computer cool and thus prevents any damage that may occur from excessive heat build up.

Improved Computer Performance – Install Only Needed Applications

Computers tend to slow down over time as more and more programs are installed. This may not be immediately evident to the naked eye, but as time goes by the signs and symptoms start to reveal themselves. What’s more, the larger the program is is the greater the effect it will have on the system. Modern software (especially games and other heavy graphics programs) can severely erode the performance of your computer. This is worsened if your processor is slower than recommended and you have insufficient memory. The way around it is quite easy though.

A rule of thumb is to install only the applications that you NEED. All too often many of us download a software to try it out and then forget to remove it after we are finished. This takes up space that will be needed by programs that we need to install. How many of us have games, demos, and trial programs on our computers that we no longer use? Uninstall them. Get rid of them. And believe me, you will be surprised at how much faster your operating system loads and how improved your computer’s performance will become. In addition, putting in more memory and a faster processor will help to improve performance even more!