teaching old stones new tricks

Sitting up, taking nourishment, it's gonna be a good day.

Opening the lines of Communication

Now you have your shiny new computer – either a Mac or PC – and you’ve set it up with the assistance of store’s hired gun.  You didn’t call your son, daughter or theChuck_Connors_Johnny_Crawford_The_Rifleman_1960 copy kid next door because installation and being patient with customers is included in the exorbitant price of the equipment. Ridicule is the price of calling in cousin Grace’s boy.

Whichever form of beast you’ve chosen will include a word processing application – ‘Word’ on PC’s and ‘Pages’ on Macs – a mail platform and a web browser. You will need to have an internet account but of course, you already have that because you did not just fall off the turnip truck nor are you a Luddite – that term, by the way, is continually misapplied in this context but that is another story. Just make sure when the computer is being set up that the email platform is configured because if it isn’t, you will spend a lot of time on hold waiting for your internet provider to help hammer out exactly the problem.

Don’t ask me because I don’t know: it falls under the category of things I don’t touch because it 640px-Train_wreck_at_Montparnasse_1895 copyonly makes things worse. But I will look into it before I post again so I can give you a better answer. This way you know I’m human too (as if that wasn’t already pretty darn obvious).

Once you have everything set up and, regardless of whether you are using Explorer or Safari as your web browser, the very first order of business on the browser is to search for “Google Chrome”. Across the top of the page you will see “Download”.

Yes, select download and install.

When the big warning bells go off and your computer asks you if you’re sure you want to install this because it could be weird don’t worry, select ignore and hit install. You can do this because it is easy and pretty much idiot proof. How do I know? I’ve installed it and, in all humility, I take it as a personal challenge to prove they didn’t account for my class of idiot.

Once Google Chrome is installed, use this as your browser and use Gmail as your email application. It takes a bit of fiddling to set up Gmail but, again, see reference above to idiot and proofie-ness and remember I have done this too. You can set up a Gmail account that does not go through the pre-installed mail program and save yourself a lot of installation grief.

People and the Post, Postal History from the Smithsonian's National Postal Museum

People and the Post, Postal History from the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum

Why do I recommend Gmail over hotmail (I know, ‘who uses Hotmail anymore?’) or any other free mail service? It is extremely stable, has an excellent spam filter and offers a variety of options including instant messaging, video chat and internet phone so you can call anywhere in North America without paying long distance charges. Yup, there are many phone providers that do this but with them, whether you realize it or not, you are paying for the service. The bottom line is you have a lot of options with Google and I have yet to find a way to sink it.

That is enough for today. I wanted to make sure you didn’t think I’d fallen into the post-Christmas blog-fade that kills many a fine intention. I am here and I will continue to be here and even answer questions if you have them. If I don’t know the answer I can find out who does and hook y’all up.

Happy New Year and welcome to a new year of safe (web) surfing without the kids.


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This entry was posted on January 12, 2016 by in unlearning.

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