NWA-PCUG Newsletter Article, November 2011
Tips & Tricks
By Constance Brown,
President, Canton/Alliance/Massillon Computer User Group, Ohio
July 2011 issue, The Memory Map

constanceb (at) camug.com (click to email author)

Every once in a while, it is good to review some basic principles and concepts of using a computer. One question my students often ask is, “How do we know whether to single click or double click.” Well, there is not a hard and fast rule, because you can adjust computer settings as to how your computer responds to clicks. Out of the box, the computer is set up so that you usually double click on an icon to open a program. Once you are in a program and want to edit or save or perform any number of other tasks, you generally single click on those tasks.

Many times new users who are not really used to a mouse, will try to open a program by double clicking on the name of the program instead of the icon. Often they get the Rename option instead of opening the program. Point to the icon to double click and this will not happen. Not everyone develops a good user-mouse relationship. If you absolutely cannot get the double click to work for you, you can highlight the icon of the program you wish to open by clicking only one time. Then click the Enter key on your keyboard.

Sometimes you want to move an icon on your desktop from one place to another. One way to do that is to click and drag. How do you do that? Left click on your mouse and hold it down while moving the mouse to point to the new location where you wish to drop the icon. Once you are there, lift your finger off the mouse and the object will stay where you put it.

Many times we enjoy personalizing our computers by changing the desktop background. To do this, go to the Windows button that opens the Start menu on the newer computers. If you have an Older computer, click on Start. Click on Control panel. Click on Appearance and Personalization. A new window opens. Here you will need to click on Change Desktop Background. This link is found under the larger grouping titled Personalization. You will be able to select from several pictures included with your copy of Windows or browse to one of your own photos and set it as a background.

Sometimes, as the number of candles increase on our birthday cakes, we need to enlarge the text found on our desktops beside the icons that we use. While you are in the Control Panel and looking at Appearance and Personalization, you may want to click on Display and adjust the text size to a more readable size.

Have you ever tried to make a correction in a document you were writing only to have letters deleted every time you tried to insert new ones? Perhaps you misspell the name Kendra by omitting the letter “e” and you place the insertion point between the “K” and the “n” and type the letter “e.” To your dismay, you now are missing the letter “n.” So you type “n” only to lose the “d.” What has happened? Your insertion key has gotten turned off. Click on the insertion key once to enable it. Now you will be able to insert the missing letters.

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