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Electronically Enhanced Thanksgiving

It’s Thanksgiving week and, for many, that means either hosting or traveling.

Don’t forget how valuable your computers and mobile devices can be over the holiday:

  • Set the timer on your smartphone to make sure nothing over-cooks in the kitchen
  • Consult your to-do list to be sure you don’t forget anything
  • Search the internet for traditional and non-traditional recipes
  • Call or video chat with those in your family who won’t be at dinner
  • Tap your sports app to check the scores of the games you are not watching
  • Check the weather app to be sure you pack the right clothes
  • Follow your map program to help you get where you are going
  • Play background music from your music library or music app during dinner
  • Download the “Map My Walk” app to get moving before — and especially after – a big meal.
  • Rent a DVD or stream a movie to watch after dinner

and of course,

  • Use your camera to take pictures, pictures, and more pictures!

Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving.

Step It Up!

Have you seen the newest fashion accessory? Bracelet-style fitness trackers that log your day and night activity.

How many steps do you take each day? How many calories do you burn? How long (and how well) do you sleep?

Your fitness tracker can tell you.

This is a booming business. Dozens of wearable tracking devices are out there; each with distinctive styles and features.

Do they work? Yes, they track and report activity.

Will they work for you? Only if you use them.

And they are pretty simple to use.

  • Keep the battery charged.
  • Check the displayed information every day (either on the bracelet screen or on the accompanying computer app or website).
  • Set realistic goals.
  • Keep moving.
  • Wear it!

Below are a few links to articles that describe, review, and rate some — but not all — of the trackers out there. Are you ready to “step” up?

TopTen Reviews

Use Your Desktop

Icons on your computer’s desktop are shortcuts to programs, files, and folders stored in your computer. Are you using yours efficiently?

To make the best use of your desktop, place icons there for

  1. Long-term use: programs, files, and folders that you use often
  2. Short-term use: programs, files, and folders that take you to a current project (when the project is over, you can remove the icon from the desktop)
  3. Temporary use: a “holding space” for organizing files and folders. Let me explain …

When you organize files and folders, you might create a new folder and then try to drag existing files into it. However, if you can’t see those files and the new folder at the same time, dragging and dropping is difficult.

Rather, create the new folder on your desktop, drag your files into it, and then drag the whole new folder where you want to store it.

To create a new folder on your desktop:

  • Place your cursor on your desktop and right-click (control-click on a Mac)
  • Click on “new” and then “folder” (or “new folder” on a Mac)
  • Name the new folder
  • Press the “return” (or “enter”) key

Use your desktop wisely!

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