Skip to content

Archive for

3-Way Calling

Even with its many cool features, your smartphone is, at its core (no “apple” pun intended), still a phone. One of my favorite phone features is one I often forget to use: 3-way calling. Make one call on your phone, add another call, and then connect (“merge”) the two. Now all three of you are in the same conversation.

Since you initiated the calls, the open lines depend on you. Either of the other parties can hang up and leave you and the remaining party talking, but if you disconnect first, the other two parties lose their connection to each other.
Three-way calls are a fun social experience (talking with two of your kids at the same time or agreeing on what restaurant three couples prefer), and a practical business tool (agents, attorneys, buyers, sellers, clients, spouses in different places, etc.).
Here’s how you do it on either an iPhone or an Android phone:
  • Once you are talking with the first party, tap “Add Call.” This will temporarily put the first party on hold.
  • Tap in a phone number or choose a number from your Contacts or your Recent Calls.
  • Once the second party answers, tap “Merge calls” and the two parties are connected to you and to each other.
Don’t forget about this feature. You’ve had it all along and probably rarely, if ever, use it. Try it soon!

Desktop Icons

For good reason, the visible items on the top of your desk are the things that will soon require your attention: unpaid bills, invitations, current projects, items to be filed, etc.

Use your computer’s “desktop” the same way.

(Your desktop is the first screen you see when you boot up your computer — typically the standard Windows or Apple designs unless you have changed it).

Computer users often have too many or too few icons on their desktop; neither is optimal. If you store all of your program shortcuts, folders, and files on your desktop, you cannot easily find that which needs your attention. If you are fastidious enough to not want to clutter your desktop, you are missing the ease of access to your most pressing projects.

  • To save a new file to your desktop, choose “desktop” (rather than “documents”) when you specify where to save the file.
  • To bring an existing file (or folder) to the desktop, open your directory, locate the file or folder, drag it from its current location, and drop it on the desktop.
  • To open a new folder on your desktop, right-click (control+click on a Mac) on the desktop and choose New Folder.

If you are working on a project over days or months, consider saving the folder or file(s) to your desktop, rather than in your documents; you’ll need fewer clicks to access it each time. Once you have completed the project, however, be sure to drag the folder or file(s) back to the appropriate location in your documents, freeing up your desktop space for the next project.

Apple Standard Time

If you have an Apple device, you get an email from Apple every time you — or someone — signs into or makes a change to your AppleID account. Apple just wants to be sure it was you. If you are the one who accessed the account, delete the email.

What if you are not sure it was you? You did use your account recently, but not at the time the Apple email indicates. At that hour you were getting your haircut, sleeping, playing golf, at the movies, etc.; it definitely could not have been you.

Or was it? Look more closely at the email. Apple has an inconsistent way of noting the time. Sometimes they use the time zone you are in (Eastern Standard or Daylight Time for most of us), sometimes they use the time zone they are in (Pacific Standard or Daylight Time for Cupertino, California), and sometimes they use GMT, Greenwich Mean Time. I have received all three.

If you are concerned, check the time zone of the reported hour and do the math — on the east coast, add 3 to PDT or subtract 4 from GMT — to determine if it was really you. Probably was. Phew!