Geek in a Golf Cart

A web site for computing seniors

Blog

view:  full / summary

It's official...

Posted by parade1989 on September 7, 2015 at 4:05 PM Comments comments (2)

It’s Official…


Hi everybody! I know it’s been quite a long time since I’ve posted a blog on this site. I’m posting now to tell you about the changes that I’ve made in my life. Here goes…


I’m Retired!!!!!!!!


Photo credit to: http://www.aag.com

If you wish to view more photos go to
http://www.aag.com/retirement-reverse-mortgage-pictures

 

I have had the privilege of serving many customers over the last 8 years, helping them with their computers. I have had the honor to help you either by giving lessons, maintenance or troubleshooting.


At this point, it’s time for me to jump in my golf cart and ride into the sunset. I can’t wait to experience life as a retired person!


The Geek in a Golf Cart web page will remain open and I’m committed to writing more blogs about computers and all the other things that I’ll be trying while I’m navigating my new life in retirement.


A Website Renovation…



First, I’ll renovate the web site just slightly so people are aware that I no longer run a computer business.


I’m retired (I just love saying that!) and one of my first steps in retirement is to follow my dream of writing, blogging, and thrifting, as well as REcycling and REpurposing and yes, maybe even REselling.


The Geek in a Golf Cart website will be a work in progress for a while as I figure out where my creative dreams lead me. We all know that the computer is a wonderful tool, no matter what your occupation. I now intend to prove that statement as I taken on new endeavors.


Your Questions and Feedback are Always Welcome!

 


Please, please, please continue to follow my website even though I may not be focusing completely on computers. I intend to help people realize that computers are not just for e-mails and pictures. So stay tuned…


Choosing to Unsubscribe…



If you decide that following the newly renovated website is just not for you, I completely understand and unsubscribing is certainly an option. Blogs and Facebooks posts, Tweets, Google+ and the like aren’t for everyone and some may elect to click the Unsubscribe button at the bottom of their e-mail. Rest assured that as soon as I receive an unsubscribe notification, I will remove your name from the mailing list. And… if that doesn’t happen (YIKES!) you all still have my phone number! Just give me a call and let me know that the new Geek in a Golf Cart format is not for you.


So, in a nutshell, I’m still a Geek . . . I still drive a golf cart . . . and I still have a lot to say about lots of stuff. I hope to hear from you, as always with suggestions and comments.


Thank you so much for the last 8 years! I’ll see you on the NEW and (hopefully) improved Geek in a Golf Cart web site.



Cheers!

 

Updating Your Computer & Software * Apple News

Posted by parade1989 on February 10, 2015 at 9:00 PM Comments comments (0)

What Every Computer User Should Know


I’m really surprised at the number of people that get messages on their computers for program updates or updates to their apps that ignore those updates because they’re not sure what to do. Many people say that they’ve seen messages that a program wants to update, but they close the message without addressing the issue because they are unsure if the update is legitimate.

The first thing to do before closing the message window is to write down EXACTLY what the message says. I’ve previously sent out instructions about basic updates that should be accepted by the computer user. But I think it is important enough to repeat.

The PC User should always be aware of what is running at the bottom right of your Task Bar. This is where notifications for updates will appear when necessary.
  • The blue palette with sphere is from Microsoft. Microsoft will only install the most important updates. Just click on the palette and follow the instructions to install these updates.
  • Java also must have periodic updates. The icon look like an orange box with a coffee cup and steam coming from it. Click the icon to install Java updates.
  • Other updates that are important come from Adobe. Both Flash Player and Reader are made by Adobe and updates usually come very close to the time that Microsoft sends update notifications. Note: Be very careful that you clear check marks and decline EVERYTHING except the Adobe product.

There may be other updates, depending on the programs that are specific to your computer. IF you don’t recognize the program that is asking to update, just say NO until you can be sure that it is a necessary update.

The best place to find all the programs that are installed on your computer is in the Control Panel. This is the same place where you would go to uninstall a program. It’s the best spot to find an alphabetical list of ALL your programs. If the update you are looking for is in that program list, then know that the program is installed and, therefore, it should be updated.

 

If you are updating an Apple computer I find it easiest to click the Spotlight icon in the menu bar, type the app’s name, then press Return.

 

Avast Software Updater

Periodically, if you’re using Avast Free Antivirus software, you will receive a message from the Software Updater. It’s telling you about updates that are needed on certain programs and utilities. There are 5 main points that I see in this update…


The word UPGRADE at the top of the window. It’s a pretty green color and may be very enticing to click on the button. Don’t click that UPGRADE unless you want to begin running the paid version of Avast. Remember the rule, UPDATE NOT UPGRADE.

 

  1. The same goes for the button that says “Activate automatic updates.” In the free version of Avast, your updates must be installed manually. If you’d rather have Avast update automatically, feel free to click the button and pay the annual fee.
  2. The first circle shows the heading Out-of-date software. At the right you will see the Update button. Just click the button and the updates begin. (Note: I like to click one at a time to make sure there’s no confusion in doing all at the same time.)
  3. The next circled heading is Ignored software. I ignored the last Internet Explorer update since I use Chrome. Tonight, I decided to click Stop ignoring and Internet Explorer is now up to date.
  4. The last circled heading is Up-to-date software. This is the only step that doesn’t require any action. It’s just an informational area telling us that the programs in the list are already updated.

Five simple steps. Don’t be afraid of the intimidating box.


Speaking of Apples…


The following is a blog post from Mac of All Trades, a company in Tampa that specializes in the sale of refurbished Apple products.


If, like me, you’ve been toying with the idea of converting to a Mac, then this might be an interesting article for you to read. I’ve already switched to iPhone and iPad and I’m so happy I did.  It might be time for me to go “All in!”


Buying refurbished could be a great way to get your feet wet in the Apple world without the hefty price tag of brand new.


A big thank you to Meghan from Mac of All Trades for sharing this link:


http://bit.ly/1x8rX5Y


 Happy Reading!

Blog #2: Phishing Emails

Posted by parade1989 on January 20, 2015 at 9:25 PM Comments comments (0)

Be Aware of Phishing Emails


Diane forwarded an email to me. It appeared to be a notification from Comcast, her internet provider, telling her that her bill was ready. You might be thinking, “Well, that was nice of Comcast to remind me that my bill is due.” Well, maybe it was nice of them, but if you didn’t request that you get an email reminder, then you should not click on the email.


Scammers have the ability to send emails requesting payment of bills and making those emails look exactly like the company that they profess to be. They easily copy logos from the company’s website and paste it into their fake emails, hoping that a percentage of the people they contact will actually pay the bill. Of course, the payment isn’t going to the legit company, but to a cyber criminal located in “Who Knows Where!”


So when Diane forwarded this to me, asking, “WHY DID I GET THIS?????” I immediately went to google.com and typed the words, “fake emails coming from Comcast.”


The results of that search showed many posts regarding phishing emails received by Comcast customers, but the reports are dated mid-2014. This tells me that there haven’t been any issues with Comcast recently. I did, however run across a great article posted by Comcast telling us how to recognize these phishing emails.


The article can be found at http://customer.comcast.com/help-and-support/wireless-internet/phishing-scams/


Happy Reading!


Note: I used Comcast as an example, but be warned phishing emails can come through disguised as any internet provider.

 

 

Happy New Year

Posted by parade1989 on December 31, 2014 at 1:30 PM Comments comments (0)



Here we are at the end of 2014! I hope the past year was good to everyone and you’re ready for 2015. I’ve been thinking about New Year’s traditions… The big one, the one that makes me cringe . . . the dreaded New Year’s Resolution.


I can’t remember what my New Year’s Resolution was for 2014, so it’s fair to conclude that I probably broke it! I would even venture to guess that I broke it before Valentine’s Day of 2014!


This year, my New Year’s Resolution is to NOT make a New Year’s Resolution. That’s right! NO! No to the New Year’s Resolution ritual.


Before you start thinking that I’ve given up on the idea of working toward creating a better version of myself, let me explain…


I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that thinking of a New Year’s Resolution for 2015 only makes me think of failure. Why would I make a promise to carry out a plan that’s designed to produce a better ME by the end of the year when I already know that I probably can’t stick to that promise? I don’t want to be an early failure, so I decided to change the rules. Here’s what I came up with…


I’ve decided to change my 2015 New Year’s Resolution to a 2015 New Month’s Resolution. My resolution will last ONLY for the month of January. To me, that’s a doable plan and I know that it will end at the end of the month. From there, I can choose to continue the same New Month’s Resolution, or change the resolution altogether. So instead of vowing to lose weight in 2015, I’ll take a step closer to that goal by giving up sugar for the month of January 2015.


I think I can do this! Of course, I make no promises past January 31st. :)


What is your Resolution?

 

Changes . . . Inevitable or Annoying?

Posted by parade1989 on August 19, 2014 at 7:30 PM Comments comments (0)

Most of the time, and only on my good days, do I see changes as inevitable. Let's face it... that's life! As humans, we are constantly changing and growing. For every new experience we generate a new memory. If the experience is fun or even tolerable, we may feel comfortable with staying in the moment, but when that experience changes again... 


Then, there are times when our experience starts out like a brand new baby, all cute and cuddly. That baby smiles and coos when you speak in a soft, loving voice. Then that same baby becomes a toddler -- let's say at age 2!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh my, did I hit a nerve with the women readers? Has anyone heard of the "terrible twos?" Uh-huh, I can hear the groans!


This is how I feel when a perfectly comfortable program is changed to a new version and turns into something I don't recognize... The Spyware version of the terrible 2's... Inevitable? YES! Acceptable? It has to be. We can't throw out the baby because she's growing up. So let's try some adult reasoning...


Imagine me, the teacher, helping the student who should be running spyware scans every week. I say, "Yes, let me show you how... it's very simple..." And then, I double click my trusty icon, I get the "oh so comfortable" message that announces a new version of Superantispyware is ready to be installed. "Easy!" I say to my student, "We'll just download this update and continue our lesson." Then the update finishes and I see this:


"What is this????" I say to my student. "Yes!" my student announced. "My words exactly! It doesn't look like anything you've described in your instructions . . . <sigh>.  .. What do I do now?"


I certainly couldn't hide the fact that I, the teacher, was surprised at the look of the new version. It was very obvious that I was taken by surprise. Was anyone else recently taken by surprise? Was anyone confronted with a window that was unfamiliar and therefore uncomfortable? What did you do? Did you close the window and breath a sigh of relief? Did you attempt the scan? Did you SUCCEED? I'd love to hear about your reactions to the new "grown up toddler version" of Superantispyware. 


Yep, we just get used to having this baby around. The baby has even become predictable. Then, WHAM, a toddler! Looks different, acts different, and most of all makes me feel different. I'm not in control anymore... I'm not in the drivers seat. What to do? Take the power back!!!! Here's how:

 

Run SuperAntiSpyware: (Revised 8/19/14)

1. Double-click the SuperAntiSpyware icon on your desktop.


2. At the bottom right of the window, click the link that says, Click here to check for updates.


3. When the window appears stating that the update is complete, click OK at the bottom right.


4. Click the first box - Scan This Computer


5. Leave each box alone and simply click Quick Scan at the right side of the window. (I suggested running Quick Scan each week. However, to be sure that you are reaching all files with this scan, you might consider clicking Full Scan once a month.)


6. When the scan is complete, leave the red X’s and click the Continue, the middle button at bottom.


7. When the removal process is complete, click Continue at the bottom right. (Note: My removal process moved VERY slowly. I’m sure it depends on the number of infections. I had 120.)


8. You will return to the first screen and at that point us the red X to close the window.


9. Close the program with the red X at the top right of window.


Still have questions? Jump over to the blog and ask about it? We can talk about this change as a group and help each other. Let's chat!

 

P.S. A great big thank you to Sally for being so patient with "the teacher" as she fumbled through a new program!

5 Things I Learned about Blogging from April Bowles Olin

Posted by parade1989 on June 3, 2014 at 5:00 AM Comments comments (11)

Thank you, April Bowles Olin, for one of the BEST workshops that I’ve participated in at CreativeLive.com. The folks at CreativeLive really hit the jackpot when they asked you to present this workshop.

It’s been just about 1 month since this workshop changed my life. I’ve learned so much from you, April – the most important thing is that I should keep moving forward! It’s been a whirlwind this last month. Since the workshop, I’ve changed my blog name, I’ve created a simple website with my own domain name and committed to a weekly newsletter for my readers. I’m not gonna lie! It hasn’t been an easy month…

April, before we met, I was seeing everything from the mind of a prepress typesetter – my former occupation. Ahh, you say… a graphic artist! NOT!!!!!! My training came in the transition of linotype machines in the mid-1970s and to make matters worse I ended up specializing in the pre-press production of college textbooks. Can it get any more boring?

 

Then I found CreativeLive.com and, more importantly, April Bowles Olin. The top 5 things I’ve learned from the Blogging Workshop at CreativeLive.com:

  1. Push past my comfort zone. Staying safe while blogging tends to fall flat with the readers. This comment really did resonate with me. My writing tends to be direct and very matter-of-fact.
    What do I know now? COMFORT = BOREDOM
  2. Make a commitment. I’ve tried before to start a blog. Went to a free blog site, created and account and I was off to the races, or so I thought. I didn’t know I had to attract my readers. I thought they’d just show up. After the CreativeLive Workshop, I actually asked 20 customers to subscribe as my “blog testers.” I told them they will receive a newsletter EVERY Wednesday. I’ve kept that commitment so far. I’m even starting to get some feedback…readers are asking for certain topics.
    What do I know now? CONSISTENCY = FOLLOWERS
  3. Reach out for support. This is a big one. I spend a lot of time at the keyboard, but a lot of that time is “alone” time. Just writing… no research, no interaction, basically no life! April showed us that reaching out to the blogging community only enhances everyone’s life and, in turn, their blogs. I’ve met real people, with real ideas and willing to share those ideas and help a beginner get off the ground.
    What do I know now? MENTORSHIP = SUCCESS
  4. Find my target readers. This was huge! The idea of this changed the way I presented my blog. I actually had a picture in my mind of the people that I was interacting with. I wrote words specifically for them. I was no longer writing for everyone… just for those that were interested in what I was writing about. I no longer had to worry that I wasn’t “speaking to the masses.” When I stopped that, my writing got easier.
    What do I know now? PERSONALITY = CONNECTION
  5. Find my niche. My blog is still a baby, maybe a toddler. It is in the early stages of development. I want to share the entire process with my readers. The last month of making dramatic changes, taught me that I can put my unique personality into this blog. I don’t have to hold back on my quirky side. Changing the blog name and creating a new website to express my personality is the beginning. I’m stepping into a world that I think was made for me! I’m finding so many ways to express my unique creativity and share it.
  6. What do I know now? PASSION = QUALITY

Thank you, April, for showing me what it looks like to be a successful blogger. I look forward to your mentorship and support in the future.

Here’s to the new me!

 

This post is a part of the “What #BelleLive Taught Me” blog tour. To continue your journey, visit  Nela Dunato {6 Things I Learned From a Successful Blogger (And How I Applied Them)} and Consu Tolosa {10 Best Blogging Bits from #BelleLive, and one important DON'T}

Did anybody find any Candy Crush tips?

Posted by parade1989 on May 28, 2014 at 2:50 PM Comments comments (0)

So, what happened? Did anybody use Google yet to get some tips about Candy Crush? Does anybody want to share what they found? Maybe share a link so we can all become Candy Crush Connaisseurs. (CCC's for short!)

Ask and Receive

Posted by parade1989 on May 25, 2014 at 6:35 PM Comments comments (0)

Here's the way life works for me most of the time. I try to write morning pages every day. A suggestion from the book entitled The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. It really helps me to get my thoughts on paper and clear my mind of useless clutter.

 

This is an entry from my morning pages one day last week…


Then, less than one hour later, I am reading a Facebook post in a Blogger group I belong to... Look what I found!


Posted by Kristie Windley of With a K: Writing Services


I mean really, less than an hour! This page is followed by five more pages describing, in great detail, the process of each stage. Thank you Kristie Windley for such an informative document -- your generosity of sharing is amazing.

 

You might notice on the page that I wrote this morning, there were a few words crossed out. Cross-outs and re-writes are not unusual for me but in this case it was a very conscious decision to cross-out.

 

You see, I was about to write, "I do not want to start missing my deadlines." Thankfully, I caught myself in this negative frame of mind and made a conscious decision to change that thought to a positive statement.

 

Very shortly after writing that positive statement I ran across Kristie's document, which will now be posted directly above my desk.

 

Thanks for listening.


Garbage In . . . Garbage Out!

Posted by parade1989 on May 19, 2014 at 6:15 PM Comments comments (0)

The title of this post is an old saying from my typesetting days. Whenever we produced our first proofs and the proofreader marks were all over the place, we were a bit indignant about it. I hated red pencils back then.

 

"Why did the computer do that?" We'd ask this question over and over, but we knew the truth. The truth is this - barring and mechanical or program issues, a computer will only do what it's told to do. Period, end of sentence! So when we, the computer operators, would complain about the poor quality of OUR work, our boss would use this phrase... GARBAGE IN! GARBAGE OUT!

 

Computers happen to be the most logical contraptions I can think of. The computer programmers, the brains behind this life-changing invention, are very intuitive people (in my opinion). They have considered every possible glitch and have created responses to every possible malfunction. These responses are what we see as error messages. There's even an error message for the unknown!

 

The programming "genious" that we, the user, experience every day is in the form of a message that appears usually when something is being downloaded. The message is: "Are You Sure You Want to Continue?" Of course, the phraseology is so much more polite, but when we, the EVERY-DAY, RUN-OF-THE-MILL, ALL I WANT TO DO IS CHECK MY E-MAIL, type of user faces a message that basically asks for a commitment, we freeze!

 

"Oh no! What if I click yes when I should click NO! OMG! I better cancel!"

 

This type of insecure behavior is acceptable, I suppose, in some circles, but definitely not in the PC world. Remember, your computer is a machine, created to respond to your commands. We can build confidence by experience. Experience is our greatest teacher.

 

So, sit in front of that intimidating piece of metal, press the POWER button like you mean it and say these words out loud --

You are NOT the boss of me!

I'm Glad You're Here!

Posted by parade1989 on May 19, 2014 at 5:55 PM Comments comments (0)

Hi everyone! Welcome to the Geek in a Golf Cart blog. Thanks for stopping in and checking it out. I'm very pleased that you're here and hope you will find something of interest to make your life with a computer more enjoyable.


My name is Kathy Reilly, and I will be moderating this blog. Many of you already know me. I might have been to your home to help you with your computer(s). This blog is going to change that. This blog is about empowering YOU. YOU are the boss of your computer and NOT the other way around.


I have so many ideas, and it all starts with you, my readers, asking me questions and letting me know what you would like to hear about. Hopefully, I'll be able can contain my excitement and get started really soon sharing my passion for the world of computing with you. I know that many of you are very creative people. I, for one, like to think of myself that way, but the truth is, I have to work at my creativity.


So here's the questions for the day: What do you think your computer can do for you that it's not doing today? Go ahead, use this blog. It may help you become a better, more empowered, computer user. The sky really is the limit. I'm here for YOU so let's have some fun!


Please use the comment box and let me know what you would like to see me cover in the new Geek in a Golf Cart blog.


Rss_feed