Tech Health Tips in 2020

Tech4Boomers is working on how to give you more useful info and provide you with Tech Health, Tech Social Tips, and general technology advice from diverse resources.

In this time of CoronaVirus, and with the onslaught of various ideas for the well-being of our society, we are increasingly confronted with stressful situations arising from our connections with technology devices: computers, cellphones, tablets, etc. We are turning to these devices perhaps more than we want to, but we “have to”. Stress levels are running high.

  • What can we do to ‘detach’ from this onslaught of discomfort, or at least soften, allay the feelings?
    Before I retired,   I worked for about 30 years as a ‘tech person’, i.e., Help Desk, System Administration. My days were ‘filled’ with problem solving resulting from computer issues. In those times, computer stress was a considerable concern for me and the team I worked with.
  • Flash forward to the complicated and extensively increased use of computers for our daily connection to the world. That stress is magnified in numerous ways.For the sense of smell, almost more than any other, has the power to recall memories and it is a pity that we use it so little“. Rachel Carson

Continue reading

Real Conversations about Microsoft XP Operating System

canstockphoto12220399Microsoft’s deadline for the support of the Microsoft XP Operating System is the month of April 2014.  That gives all XP Operating System (OS) users one month to decide what  OS they will upgrade to (Windows 7 or Windows 8). Continue reading

Find it …Keep it?

How many of us have experienced the loss of an unreturned phone?  Recently,  I was wondering what goes through any person’s mind who finds a phone belonging to someone else, and decides to keep it, or sell it.  What are their thoughts about keeping something that is clearly an important personal item of someone else?  Is it that they relate to the ancient Roman law, Finders, Keepers?

Finders, keepers is the adage with the premise that when something is unowned or abandoned, whoever finds it can claim it. This idiom relates to an ancient Roman law of similar meaning and has been expressed in various ways over the centuries..via Finders, keepers – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Have you ever had the opportunity to return something of value to someone else?  What makes a person do his/her best to return an item to the owner? Is it moral conviction/training value within a person?

Honesty refers to a facet of moral character and denotes positive, virtuous attributes such as integrity, truthfulness, and straightforwardness along with the absence of lying, cheating, or theft. “Honesty is the best policy.” — William Shakespeare, Mark Twain, Steve Landesberg and Tony Farrugia. all said this saying.via Honesty – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The next time you find yourself in this situation, below are some guidelines and links to websites for details on what you can do if you believe that “honesty is the best policy”

If you find a locked iPhone

Since you can’t unlock the phone, you can’t poke around… But you do have options.

  • The first is to hold down the Home button for a few seconds, which may—depending on the owner’s phone settings—trigger either Siri or Voice Control. In either case, when prompted by the beep, say, “Call ICE.” If the phone’s owner has an ICE contact as described above, the phone will either start calling that person right away or ask you to clarify which number to call (as in, Home, Mobile, Work, etc). If you luck out and connect with the emergency contact, you can explain the situation to that person.via What to do if you find a lost iPhone | Macworld.

Call the police

  • You can also turn to your local police department. Manalapan, N.J., police officer Joe Felicia told Macworld that after you turn a found phone into the police, “if the owner responds to the police station and can identify the phone, the police department will return the phone to the owner. If not, the phone will go in a bin with hundreds of other phones.”

Felicia said that he sees “no problems” with trying to search the phone to locate the owner, if “it is being done in good faith.” The one catch: “If you are searching the phone and you stumble onto something that is obviously illegal… the phone would go directly to the police.”via What to do if you find a lost iPhone | Macworld.

Find the owner of a lost cell phone

  • Power the phone off. This can be done by holding down the power button on the phone. The power button is usually on the right side of the phone, toward the bottom. On some phones the power button is highlighted in red..
  • Turn the phone back on by pressing the power button again. You may need to hold the button for a second for it to power back on..
  • Watch the screen to discover the service provider. Once you know the service provider, contact the company’s customer support phone number. Many phone companies’ websites have “Contact Us” sections where you can find this number…
  • Answer questions from the representative the best you can. The agent may ask for the phone’s serial number and the type and style of the phone. If you are not sure of these answers, the support agent can help you locate information. The information you provide should be able to give the agent the information he needs to find the owner.
  • You may be asked to bring the phone to a local store or mail the phone back with a prepaid envelope the company sends you. via How to Locate Cell Phone Owners | eHow.com.

I hope this is helpful 🙂

Phone Security

Everywhere lately I am reading about how to protect one’s identity from phone loss or theft.  In recent weeks it is even more so.  This topic is without doubt something we all need to be aware of, and should do  something about.  Are you at risk of putting your identity in jeopardy because you have not taken the steps to add restrictions on your phone?

What are your risks today?  Have you ever lost your phone?  Do you think security on your device is important?  Don’t think so ? Below is a small part of an article that appeared in the New York Times recently.  I urge you to click on the link after the brief summary to get the full story.

Chuck Bokath would be terrifying if he were not such a nice guy. A jovial senior engineer at the Georgia Tech Research Institute in Atlanta, Mr. Bokath can hack into your cellphone just by dialing the number. He can remotely listen to your calls, read your text messages, snap pictures with your phone’s camera and track your movements around town — not to mention access the password to your online bank account. via Protecting a Cellphone Against Hackers – NYTimes.com.

Enough said?  Below are  recommendations  on how to begin protecting yourself from compromising the safety of your personal information.  In the New York Times article one of the smartphone security companies  mentioned is Lookout, Inc.  Check out the information below and get started with protecting your cyber identity.  🙂

Award-Winning Security That’s Easy to Use Your smartphone is vital to your work and everyday life. Lookout provides award-winning security to protect you from viruses, malware and spyware, the ability to backup and restore your data, and tools to help locate lost or stolen phones. Lookout’s unique cross-platform, cloud-connected applications are designed to be lightweight and efficient while delivering the best protection possible. via Smartphone Security | Mobile Device Security for Smartphones.

Apple iPhone and iPad users can checkout the 2 links below

Protecting and Recovering Your iPhone and iPad from Loss and Theft | Security Generation.

Frequently Asked Questions About Find My iPhone (and iPad) | Security Generation.

♦  Android phone users may want to check out how to protect their phones with Norton’s beta app

Norton Mobile Security Android security appSmartphones hold a lot of valuable data: Text messages, e-mail, and even credit card numbers can reside on the device, where they’re easily accessed. If you lose your phone, you run the risk of having your identity stolen. Sure, you can set up a lock pattern, but we have seen such measures circumvented in the past.

Symantec’s Norton Mobile Security (beta) allows you to remotely lock and wipe your phone by text message, so that whoever finds it can’t immediately go on a shopping spree in the Android Market with your money. You can even lock down the SIM card so that a thief can’t swap it out to another phone. Beyond that, Norton permits you to block calls and text messages, as well as to scan your phone for malware. Although the program is still in beta until the end of the year, Norton Mobile Security is a superb choice for anyone who wants complete cell phone protection. via Protect Your Android Phone With Security Apps | PCWorld.

I hope this is helpful 🙂


Move That Email: Creating Folders

Email Organizing

In the last Post I introduced you to the Sorting function in AOL mail. This organizational utility feature gives you an opportunity to prepare your messages  for a filing system of your choice.  Therefore making your messages easier to retrieve.

I’ve always found filing in general a fairly tedious chore.  However, once it’s done, locating information is a breeze.  Before we get started, I suggest that you decide which folder categories you are going to use for your filing system.  For example, will you file mails according to the subject, or name of the person, or month?  For this illustration, my folder group will be according to the month.

1)  I am first going to sort my mail by clicking the date column.  You will notice it has a small down arrow () next to the date.  This indicates that the mail items will sort in descending order, which means the most recent date will be at the top of the list.

Sort/descending order

 2) Now look at the left side of the panel where it says My Folders, click the word Add. You will notice that the word New Folder appears.  At that point type a name for the new folder, then click the plus symbol to confirm the name.

Folder Creation

3) Now we can select the mail we want to move to the folder.  These are the steps:  a) Click the small box next to the first email you want to move.  b) hold down your shift key on your keyboard, then click the box next to the last email you want to move to the folder. c) find your Action icon, and click the down arrow. d) click the name of the folder you created to move those mail items.

Click Action, then Click the folder name to move the email message

Note: The folder you created will show how many mail items are in the folder.

7 emails are in the folder


Classic AOL Mail: Organizing – Folders and Filters – AOL Help
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I hope this is helpful 🙂 ….Please let us hear what your email tips are.  See you at the next Post!

Why I Blog

Thoughts from: @autocreate740

I invited someone to look at my Blog recently, just to tell him that I am doing something new.  He happens to be somewhat computer literate. When I heard back from him, he wanted to know what he was looking for.

Ha!

After receiving that response, I wondered how many Bloggers are out there, who are feeling lonely, and become discouraged about blogging because NO One is reading, or viewing, let alone, commenting, or ‘liking’ their Blogs.

I’ve been blogging since May 2011.  As of October 1, I will have started my 6th month, so it seems right to check what I am doing at Tech4Boomers.com, and to confirm for myself what I think I’m doing.

I have been interested in technology, after leaving a career in film and television, for about 25 years now.  My true ‘likes’ are Outlook Email, and oddly enough,  Word Processing.  I am an iPhone/iPad ‘groupie’. I also dabble in PowerPoint. I Love Apps!

Blogging is my newest avocation; I enjoy learning about this new (for me) technology. It’s a wonderful challenge to acquire a new computer skill, and it seems to be very popular with young people, and that’s always good.  I mean staying in touch with the young people; they are our future. 🙂

I am a Baby Boomer.  Most of my friends are trying to get away from the computer, and would rather not learn yet another thing that involves a computer challenge.  I truly like WordPress.com. And, that I was able to start blogging for free! was truly a treat.  🙂

Blogging provides a way for creativity on my own terms.  I can cover the topics I find interesting, put my artwork in, say it the way I feel I want to, and that gives me a wonderful feeling of freedom.

Blogging keeps me informed and connected with an outside world.  I find it intriguing to read what others are thinking.  Blogging is a universal ‘connection’ tool.

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What is Tech4Boomers designed to do?  Here’s what I think briefly:

It’s an electronic newsletter, where, once a week I post something I think  is worthwhile knowing. It’s also a reference guide for me 🙂

It attempts to simplify technical issues for my generation, and younger people who want to learn something about Twitter, Linkedin, WiFi, 3G, iPhones, iPads,  Blackberry phones, Apps, and various other computer related topics.

It’s designed to give a knowledge  level to those who are not ‘computer savvy’, but would like to know more.

It’s designed to help others when possible.

It’s fun for me!

In addition to providing a platform for me to improve my skills overall, and blogging skills in particular, this activity allows me to introduce friends and family to the blogging experience:  What is it? How does it work? What is its reach, and knowing is it a worthwhile undertaking.

So here’s the conclusion: I’ve decided to continue! 🙂  I hope this was helpful in further clarifying what Tech4Boomers is about.

See you at the next post !

Wi Fi, 3G, 4G, Data Plans ? So many decisions! What’s a person to think?

It’s all so complicated! 

How does one make decisions about using cell phones; what service should you sign up for? Why do you need a data plan anyway?

AT&T pointed out recently, 200MB of data gives you the capability to send and receive 1000 e-mail messages no attachments and 150 e-mails with attachments, view 400 Web pages, post 50 photos on social media sites, and watch 20 minutes of streaming video.

via AT&T’s New iPhone Data Plans: Pros and Cons | PCWorld.

I cyber-searched’ for answers to these questions. Hopefully, my excerpts will assist you in understanding what you require and how to make decisions about your cell phones and data plans. Also, there will be links to the websites where I found information so that you can research more thoroughly, should you want to do so.

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What is WiFi?  Wi Fi is short for Wireless Fidelity and..?     🙂
According to Dictionary.com, wifi:wireless local area network: a local area network that uses high frequency radio signals to transmit and receive data over distances of a few hundred feet.

What is 3G? 3G is an umbrella term for a collection of technologies that make up the third generation of cellular data networks. These standards allow cell phones (and other devices capable of connecting to a cellular network) to send and receive data at speeds comparable to cable or DSL. via In A Nutshell: What Is 3G?.

What is 4G? 4G, an acronym for fourth-generation wireless, is a technology that will transform wireless communications in a completely new way. It is also known as “beyond 3G,” since it provides a comprehensive and secure IP (Internet Protocol) solution. Users will enjoy high quality streaming video and “anytime, anywhere” voice and data at a much higher speed than previous generations. via What is 4G?.

Other things you should know:

Notes:

* While some Internet Service Providers offer both 3G and WiFi internet, they usually consider them separate services and require separate subscriptions.

* 3G is almost always more expensive than WiFi connected to a fixed service, so when WiFi is available – use it!

* Most 3G Service Providers offer a USB modem with their subscription services at a cost.

* 3G can be quite fast, but is in most cases worse than WiFi.

* Other wireless technologies also exist.

via Cryptech V2 » Blog Archive » The Difference Between 3G Mobile Internet and WiFi Wireless Networks.

  Do you need a data plan?

The first thing you have to do is to guesstimate how much data you think you’ll use. Two gigabytes of data per month seems to be the magic cut-off for most carriers. The vast majority of customers–98 percent, according to AT&T–use less than this each month. Average smartphone subscribers are using roughly, 400 MB of data per month, according to Validas, which recently analyzed a year of consumer phone bills from all four major carriers.

A couple of carriers, AT&T and T-Mobile, offer 200MB plans for low-data consumption. The lowest tier of service that Verizon Wireless offers is 2GB. And Sprint only offers an unlimited data plan for its smartphone customers.

But as you can see these plans aren’t tailored precisely for average usage. So most smartphone subscribers will need more than the 200MB plan but less than 2GB.

via Ask Maggie: Help! These data plans are too confusing | Signal Strength – CNET News.

All the major carriers offer tools on their Websites to help you estimate your usage. So I suggest checking that out to get a sense of what you think your usage will be. Here’s a little guide put together by Verizon Wireless that should give you an idea of how much data certain activities eat up:

* Email (text only) = 10KB

* Typical Web Page Lookup* = 1.5MB

* Audio Streaming = 40MB/hr

* Lo-Res Video Streaming = 200MB/hr

* Hi-Res Video Streaming = 400MB/hr

* Digital Photo download/upload (Hi-Res) = 1MB

$$$$$$  What will it Cost?

 The next thing to consider is price. T-Mobile’s 200MB tier is $10 a month. The good thing about its service is that if you go over your limit, it only slows your service. This means you aren’t socked with additional overage fees. AT&T’s 200MB service is $15 a month. But if you exceed this limit, your service isn’t slowed or “throttled.” Instead, you’re charged more money for more usage.

via Ask Maggie: Help! These data plans are too confusing | Signal Strength – CNET News.

🙂   That’s all for now folks.   I hope this is helpful!

Intro to Twitter_Tech4Boomers_Session 4

Who’s your Twitter in-crowd?

On Twitter, it’s all about who and what you Follow.  Following is a huge part of what’s happening in this particular social universe.

‘Following’ is a personal choice.  A good place to start is with  ‘friends’ whom you already know, in your personal ‘social circle’, those who are also Tweeps.  In this way, they can guide you on how to send Tweets, and give you a sense of belonging to the Twitter community until you get comfortable with tweeting in a larger social network.  Ask your friends what their Twitter ID’s are.  Once you have the ID’s, you can search for them using the SEARCH field.  When you find an ID, click the Follow link.

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Another way to get started with Following on Twitter is to find people or publications that interest you.  When you find them, just click on the Follow button as illustrated below:

1 – In the SEARCH field, I have entered the word News.  On the right of the panel various news options appear with the word Follow next to them.

Click on the images to see a larger version.

2 – After you click on the Follow link.  Click the Back Home link to see your Timeline.

3 – When you are back at the Home screen, the News has been added to your Timeline along with everything else (Tweeps) you are following.

4 – If you do not want to Follow a particular choice (e.g., News)  anymore, type News in the search field, click the magnifying glass to start the search.  When you find what you are looking for,  click the Unfollow link.  You can also go to your Profile, view all you are following, and select to Unfollow from there.

Following is entertaining, informative,  and fun when you become part of the Twitter social network.  There is much to learn, and be a part of in this  social environment.   I hope you will join us soon 🙂

This completes our Beginner, Tech4Boomer Twitter sessions. See you next week.  🙂

Intro to Twitter_Tech4Boomers_Session 3

Avatars >>>Who are you?

Which one are you?

Is an Avatar important to have on Twitter?  Well, that  depends on your personal preference.  For example, some of us do not  believe that we are photogenic, and would rather not place a picture of ourselves on the Internet. For those of you who are still pondering how to deal with this issue, you may want to consider why an Avatar of your choice might be preferable, as opposed to having the generic one that Twitter assigns.  I mean, an EGGFor real?

Here is what Wikipedia (my favorite source for definitions) has to say about Avatars for computing:

Avatar (computing) In computing, an avatar is the graphical representation of the user or the user’s alter ego or character. It may take either a three-dimensional form, as in games or virtual worlds, or a two-dimensional form as an icon in Internet forums and other online  communities… It is an object representing the user. The term “avatar” can also refer to the personality connected with the screen name, or handle, of an Internet user.

So for those of you who would rather not appear on Twitter as an EGG, think about a picture, or some representation (a flower), something that you’d rather see yourself represented as on Twitter, then use the guidelines below to create your unique Avatar.  Here we go.

Once you have found a picture that you want to use for your Avatar, and save it in a format that you can ‘upload’ (e.g. png, peg extensions), it takes several steps to complete the upload of your Avatar to your Profile.  I have created six (6) diagrams to assist you with completing this task.  To see the diagrams clearly, just click with your mouse on the image provided.  You can also send them to print using your Browser.

Diagram 1 = Save your picture in a format you can upload on your Desktop.  Sign onto Twitter.  Click the Profile tab.

Diagram 1

Diagram 2 = Look for the picture you saved on your Desktop. Select (highlight) it. Click the Open button.

Diagram 2

Diagram 3 = When the file (name) you selected appears next to Browse, click the Save button.

Diagram 3

Diagram 4 = Twitter will begin to upload the file and the image below will appear.

Diagram 4

Diagram 5 = When the upload is complete your Avatar picture will appear in the picture box.

Diagram 5

Diagram 6 = You have just completed the upload of your Avatar.  Click the Home button to return to the screen where you started 🙂

Diagram 6

Note:

Sometimes it takes a little while for your Avatar to show up on Twitter. Be patient, you will see yourself with a new image shortly.

Now you are dressed for the party 🙂 ! See you on Twitter !

Yes You Can Backup Your WordPress Blog!

I am sure we have all been there, trying to get out that extraordinary post – you know-  the one that really gets your message out to your followers, and then “uh oh”, your computer,  or your software, or whatever!  Something happens to your Blog!

We’ve all been there at least once.  And, we usually don’t think about backup until that fatal moment when we cannot recover the wonderful piece of genius that we just wrote.  🙂

Well, I am here to tell you, Yes you can backup your WordPress Blog !  with the help of Christopher S. Penn he makes us all protectors of our Blogs!

Check out his guidelines at: http://www.christopherspenn.com/2009/05/how-to-back-up-your-wordpress-blog-in-60-seconds/#disqus_thread