In my role, I create marketing emails at least twice a month and collaborate with others to develop content. That’s why I find Microsoft OneNote to be so helpful! I love being able to have a different tab for each collaboration session, searching for content by key words, having the ability to pull content from all kinds of resources, and easily referencing those sources. You can centralize notes, files, projects, and more for FREE using OneNote 2013. Take this Microsoft OneNote 2013 Essentials Course to learn more!
Back in the day before everyone had internet and before our computers were “networked” together, it did not matter as much if you updated your Operating System (OS) in a timely fashion because there was no risk of someone being able to connect to your computer and cause harm. The only type of network you had was “SneakerNet” (that’s my name for it).
If you wanted to share a file with someone over SneakerNet, you would:
Put a floppy disk into your computer
Copy the data to the floppy disk
Remove the floppy disk
Put on your sneakers
Walk to the other person’s desk
Hand them the floppy disk
Since as a society we have all become “connected,” the same isn’t true. It’s now more important then ever to do OS updates on both computers and mobile devices. These OS updates help to fix dangerous security flaws, bugs, and more (sometimes issues that are not revealed immediately). These are not to be confused with application updates. The operating system is what runs your computer and mobile devices. Applications are what run on top of the operating system.
When Microsoft stopped updating Windows XP to the public, I think it became a challenge among the bad guys to see who was going to discover an exploit first. It took about a month (I won that bet). Remember, it’s not an easy thing to keep software and its users safe. It takes a lot of money and effort to write the code and test the updates before they are released into the wild (i.e., the public).
So next time you receive an OS update notification from Mac, Microsoft, or your favorite flavor of Linux, read up on what it fixes and then install the update in a reasonable amount of time.
Apple just came out with an update that fixes many bugs and security holes. Did you do your update yet?
Do you ever find yourself continuously sending emails to the same groups of people? I do. Still, it feels like I’m constantly reviewing and thinking “who did I miss?” Then I wised up and realized there’s a solution for that! Now you can stop racking your brain with questions like, “who was on that committee?” And there’s no longer any need for my go-to technique of adding people based on their office location in order from front to back. The answer — create a new distribution list in Outlook (2013) and you’ll no longer need to worry about forgetting to add anyone!
Follow these steps:
Create a list of the people you want to add.
In Outlook, click People from the navigation bar at the bottom.
Under My Contacts, pick where you want to add the contact group.
Click Home and then select New Contact Group.
Type a name for the group in the Name field.
Click Add Members, and then add people from your address book or contact list.
Click Save & Close.
When you need to send an email to this group of people, simply begin to type the name you saved the list as, and it should appear. Click the list to select and use.
Note: clicking the plus sign next to the contact list name will display each individual your message will be sent to.
Do you have any useful tips about creating groups in Outlook?
I don’t know about you, but I have trouble keeping up with the cool new features of all of my gadgets. Searching out Tips and Tricks websites has become the norm. Luckily, since information is so readily available online, we can all be experts!
Do you have a new Apple iPhone 6? Check out this Tips and Tricks site to get the most out of your iPhone. For instance, learn how to print wirelessly from your iPhone, or create your own shortcut phrases for use when texting. Most of all, have fun and get productive!
Thanks to our learning partners at System Source for writing this article.
In previous posts, I have written about passwords and how to overcome the perennial problem of how to create a password that is secure yet memorable. The trick I like is to find a name that you’ll never forget and apply a few encryption tricks to it.
Suppose you love the television program, Downton Abbey.
First, create some rules. For example, a space is always a dollar sign; an “A” is an @; and an “o” is a %.
So, Downton Abbey becomes, D%wnt%n$@bbey. That’s tough to decode.
But suppose your favorite store (Amazon, for example) gets hacked. You probably have less to worry about on Amazon because they will probably clean up their act pretty quickly. But you might have a string of problems because you may have used your password on a number of other sites.
A colleague, Linda Link, had an excellent idea. She suggests making your passwords unique for every site with a system that might look like this:
Pick a letter to start your passwords (such as “B”).
Add a non-alphanumeric key (such as “*”).
Now add the first four letters of the site. For example, “TARG” for Target.
Now add your cryptic password.
So your password for Target would be:
Unique for Target. Highly cryptic. And once you know your system, fairly easy to remember.
My voice has been quiet on the blog over the past few months due to a big project we are feverishly working on – transitioning from BW to Analysis in SAP.
What is SAP/BW/Analysis?
SAP is an enterprise resource planning software that we use at Hopkins to manage business operations.
One of the reasons we use SAP is to have a tool that can run reports. We run reports on everything here at Hopkins. From sponsored projects to HR demographics, we need reports to show us how we are spending and where we can save, and to demonstrate compliance. Therefore, it’s important we use the most up-to-date and robust tool to fulfill all of our reporting needs.
When we started using SAP, we used a front-end interface called BW Report Center to access data and reports in Business Warehouse. Technology has advanced and SAP has been changing their product. With that, they will no longer support the BW interface we are accustomed to using, but instead, have created a much more robust interface – Analysis.
Benefits of Analysis
We are really excited to transition over to Analysis for several reasons, including:
Ability to run and open multiple reports at the same time
Drag and drop functionality
Universal structured reports
Pausing the data refresh
What does this mean for users?
Our project team has been creating a multitude of training opportunities for our users here at Hopkins. From FastFacts to job-aids to show-me videos to instructor-led training, we are trying to make sure we provide all of our users with training materials that best fit their personal learning style.
I think many of us have been waiting for the day we could stop using Internet Explorer. And now, finally, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Yesterday, at the Windows 10 press conference, Microsoft showed off boatloads of new software and technology. Among these announcements was a brand new web browser that will come loaded on all Windows 10 devices – Project Spartan.
Project Spartan will supposedly be more compatible with the way the web is written today, and features a new rendering engine. They didn’t say how compatible, but I will remain cautiously optimistic. They did, however, show off some super cool features! This new browser will include:
The ability to draw on webpages using your finger (on touch screens), a stylus, or your mouse, and share your marks with others. This feature will also sync to your OneDrive account. Note-taking via typing is also supported.
Built-in options to share web pages through social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, etc.
A “reading mode” that strips away the clutter from web pages so you can just focus on reading the content.
A way for you to add pages to your “reading list” to save for later. This list syncs across all of your Windows devices and natively supports .pdf files.
Microsoft’s digital assistant, Cortana, will be built into the web browser. She can help you in all sorts of ways, such as scheduling, GPS, reservations, etc.
It’s still unclear whether or not Project Spartan will replace Internet Explorer for good, or if Internet Explorer will remain part of Windows 10 for the sake of backward compatibility. We’ll have to wait until closer to release to know for sure, but we do know that Project Spartan will be the default browser in Windows 10. And from what Microsoft showed us yesterday, this new browser has the potential to be great!
Years ago, Microsoft was told they were sending out too many updates to their software. That’s what prompted the 2nd Tuesday of every month update schedule (unless an update was critical, which could occur at any time). Now Apple is doing almost the same thing with software updates that span across desktop and mobile devices. Same goes for Google and Android devices.
This week, I challenge you to track how many times you are asked to perform an update and track how many apps are being updated. Continue this for a month and for an average user, I’d estimate 15-20 updates. (I just did four!)
So the question is, are you like Pavlov’s dogs and as soon as it dings, bings, or beeps, you immediately interrupt your day and do your updates? Think about that. There is no law that says you need to update immediately or even every day. Even with OS updates, being one of the first to upgrade may make you into a Beta tester for bugs.
I recommended that you control your software updates. Don’t let them control you. I am not saying never do them. Just do them at a time that is convenient for you. And at the same time, uninstall some of those old apps that you no longer use and are taking up space and resources.
Picture this – you and your family walk into a restaurant. You find an open table, browse through the menu options, and select your order using a wireless device. When your food arrives, that’s the first interaction you have with someone on staff at the restaurant. Could the days of having a waiter take your order become obsolete in the not-so-distant future? How would you feel about that?
I recently asked myself the same question when I first encountered a quasi-waiter-less ordering system. My boyfriend and I were out of town for a wedding. We were looking for a quick, late-night bite to eat near our hotel. From the window of our room, we could see the neon glow of the Applebee’s sign just across the parking lot. Half-price appetizers after 9:00! Done.
We walked in and were directed by the bartender at the entrance to have a seat anywhere. We sat down and immediately noticed the slick, black, tablet-like device in the middle of the table. Menus were already at the table, but we were quick to push them to the side and start scrolling through the appetizer options.
Each one of the options had a photo, and you could select an item for a brief description. We added our selections to our order list before our waitress greeted us at the table (which was approximately three minutes after we sat down). She explained to us that we could order appetizers and desserts from the table top device, but all entrees and drinks should be placed with her. We told her we had already submitted our order and she was happy to tell us that they should be ready shortly. The device was self-explanatory, easy to follow, and had extra screens for preferences, for example ranch or blue cheese dressing with the wings.
Before we knew it, our food arrived and we were impressed with the timeliness. Our waitress checked back to refill drinks and ensure we were okay.
When we were done, there was an option to pay with the device or give our payment to the waitress. Can you imagine that? Never having to wait for the check ever again! We wanted to pay with the device, but our waitress said they were experiencing problems with the system that day.
Overall, I enjoyed my waiter-less dining experience. But think of the most memorable meals that you’ve had at a restaurant. What made them so special? I can vividly recall my 29th birthday dinner. The food was spectacular, but even more so, the waiter was phenomenal! He was part of the charm and ambiance of the experience, making our meal that much more special. A waiter-less meal probably wouldn’t have been the same.
So going back to my original question: how would you feel about a waiter-less restaurant? Does this take away from the dining experience or enhance it?