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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Technology IQ: Skills everyone should have

Chatting with my fellow Friends in Tech members the other day, we were discussing the basic skills that every computer user should have, if they want to get the most out of their computer. I did some thinking on this and came up with the list below.

If you know how to do a majority of these tasks, then you are well on the way to computer mastery. Additionally, if you find you are lacking 1 or 2 of these items, this list should give you a direction for your future computer learning and training.

The great thing is, if you learn these skills in one program or on one type of computer, you probably know how to do them on another type of computer or program. For example, while people often extol the differences between PCs and Macs, there are a lot of similarities in their operation. The same holds true for different programs. Saving a document in Microsoft Word is exactly the same as saving it in MS Excel, or other Windows programs.

Here are a few skills that everyone should have...

Using Applications
  • Know how to create a new, blank document
  • Open an existing document
  • Save a document
  • Save as... (and why you might want to do that)
  • Know WHERE you saved it (i.e. My Documents or Documents folder)
  • Print a document
  • Create a PDF of a document

  • Properly restart and shutdown your computer (and know why)
  • How to force a shutdown, if the computer is hung up

  • Access a web site
  • Navigate a website i.e. links, etc
  • Use a search engine like Google to find information on the web
  • Download a file/program

  • Install a program
  • Remove a program
  • Clean up desktop

  • Access email (that has been pre-configured with email account settings)
  • Send email
  • What is CC
  • What is BCC (very important)
  • When to use each
  • Reply (and when to use)
  • Forward (and when to use)
  • Delete
  • File email into folders
  • Why to organize files into folders

File Management
  • Create new folders
  • Move/save files into folders
  • Why to organize files into folders
  • Copy/Save As... a document to floppy, CD, network drive, etc.
  • Burn documents to CD
  • Delete a document (safely)

Previous Technology IQ posts:

Technology IQ: When it just won't print...

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