Past BPMUG Presentation Notes - 2007-2008
Archived Presentation Notes
December 15, 2008
Holiday Party & Meeting
It’s that magical time of year when we celebrate the fun of Holidays. For our December 15 meeting, we will have brief tips by one of our members. Paul Silversmith has offered to show us how to clean up those emails of >>>> marks and other tags when emails are forwarded multiple times. Also Paul will show how to only print a portion of a website without getting the entire 15 pages with it. After getting our tips (and some time for questions), we will celebrate the holidays with all the goodies brought by the members.
November 17, 2008
Routing Intruders Away From Your PC
Presentation by Computer Specialist, Lee Seidman
Routers are frequently thought of as a connector between your PC and the Internet. In fact, in June of this year we had a program by Lee Seidman on just that. Many people asked for more details on the basics of routers and how they can protect a PC from computer break-ins. So Lee has agreed to come back to simplify the use of routers and to explain how to use a router to add a layer of security. Mark your calendar for November 17 and bring a friend along for some basics on routers and to have some fun. Then stay for a while after for some networking and some free snacks provided by Wally and
October 20, 2008
Why We Like Our Digital Cameras
Presentation by a panel of BPMUG camera buffs
The world of cameras is evolving constantly and is very different from just a few years ago. We used to develop photos -- now we download them. We used to use a darkroom to enhance photos, now we use our computers with software to accomplish those results. With technology moving forward rapidly, we see all kinds of digital cameras on the market.
We will have a panel of experienced BPMUG members bring in their cameras and tell us what they like about them. This is also an opportunity to find out any short-comings of these cameras. We will get to see a nice high-end camera but mostly we will get to find out which "every-day" cameras are good and why. We will get some tips on what features to look for in a good camera and what to do to get the best results. This will be an interesting presentation with these seasoned photographers.
September 15, 2008
Speed-up, Clean-up, and Maintain Your PC
Presentation by Jim Smith, Book Author & BPMUG President
It is time to tune-up our PC’s for a long winter of computing. BPMUG computer user group will sponsor a free demonstration on how to tune-up, clean out, and gain control of your computer. We will demonstrate a bunch of ways that you can speed it up and clean out some of the clutter that might be slowing it down. We will even open the computer case and show you how to clean the insides as well as how to add memory and some other enhancements. We will even pass out some “cheat sheets” so you can follow along and see how we do it all. At the end of the evening, you’ll be able to take the sheets home and put some life back into your own PC.
Vacation! No meeting in August.
July 21, 2008
Open Office -- An Alternative to Microsoft's Office Suite
Presentation by Jim Smith, BPMUG President
Open Office is a free alternative to Microsoft's Office Suite. With Microsoft's standard 2007 Office package retailing at $399.95, a free suite for the office sounds too good to be true. To get a free alternative to Excel, PowerPoint, Word and Outlook is very tempting but what are the pros and cons of using Open Office? How complicated is it to install? How secure is it? Does it have spyware or bugs in it? Can Word Documents and Excel spreadsheets be used in Open Office? Come to our July 21st meeting and get all of your questions answered.
Open Office (www.openoffice.org) is both a product and an open–source project. It has been in existence for almost eight years, having its beginning with Stardivision in Germany. The mission of the project is to create a leading international office suite that will run on all major platforms and provide access to all functionality and data. This project is sponsored by Sun Microsystems with other big-name contributors such as Novell, Redhat, Redflag, CH2000, IBM, and Google. Over 450,000 people have contributed to this office suite.
Book author and BPMUG President, Jim Smith, will demonstrate Open Office and many of its features. He will give details that will help you decide whether or not to change over to the Open Office suite. And the price of the meeting is the same as the price of Open Office - free!
June 16, 2008
Drive The Superhighway While Using No Gasoline!
Presentation by Lee Seidman, Certified Computer Specialist
Are you tired of having a slow dial-up internet connection while others talk about their fast connection? Do you have DSL but want to learn about connecting it without being inundated with jargon?
BPMUG is bringing in one of our newest members -- a certified computer specialist and teacher -- Lee Seidman, to cut through the jargon for us. Lee understands that getting a router to work even after you have the DSL line put in is sometimes tricky. Lee will offer his knowledge and some easy tips on how to do this smoothly.
May 19, 2008
Genealogy – What’s New... With What's Old?
By Richard Roberts, Head of CT State Library’s History & Genealogy Unit
If we dig deep enough, we will find amazing information about our roots. We can do this in the comfort of our own home with our own computer or at our State Library in the vast History & Genealogy section.
BPMUG has invited the library head, Richard Roberts, to be our presenter for our May 19th meeting. Richard will be giving us some great references to begin or continue our search. He has agreed to share some websites where we can get started. And if you visit the State Library (www.cslib.org/handg.htm), the staff will help you devise and outline search strategies; use catalogs, indexes, and research guides to identify and locate pertinent library and archival resources; use the collections and more.
Handout from the meeting: Genealogy Resources
April 21, 2008
Digital Photography Tips
By BPMUG member, Bruce Metzger
It is time to learn more about how to use your digital camera for upcoming vacations and family gatherings! You can take plenty of great photos but then what? Who wouldn't want to share photos? But what is the best way to transfer that great image from your camera to your PC? And to resize it so it doesn't take forever to send via email. Digital photography can be fun and Bruce will show how to make it even more fun! Bruce will give a variety of photo tips and share his secrets on how to enjoy a digital camera and how to get the most out of those photos you've taken.
March 17, 2008
By Dan Henry -- Dan Henry Technology Support
Professional computer consultant Dan Henry of Dan Henry Technology Support will be coming in to talk about computer follies. Dan has an easy way of explaining away computer mysteries in everyday language. This lighthearted presentation will cover everything from the reason putting your laptop with your checked luggage is a bad idea, to why H.P's off -shore support says new printers are out of warranty, and why your daily back-up job may not really help, and lots more. Dan will share stories of his 14 years of supporting homes and businesses for PC problems. His hope is to help us sidestep many common follies and avoid obvious problems.
February 18, 2008
Back To Basics -- Practicing Safe Computing
By Jim Smith, Owner of Blarneystone Internet Services
Jim Smith will cover the ABC of securing your PC and how you can easily and cheaply protect your PC from outside (and inside) invasions. Jim will unravel the mystery behind various terms such as firewall, spyware, viruses, worms, and more. Jim will discuss various ways that your PC can be compromised and ways to prevent those break-ins. Key to protecting your computer is by having strong password protection. Jim will offer tips on how to create and remember strong passwords without listing them on a post-it note on the front of your monitor. In his business, Jim is required to keep hundreds of passwords for clients and he will share some tips on how he keeps track of those passwords safely using one of the password managers, RoboForm. Jim will show how to use a program like RoboForm to also save info like credit card numbers and how to safely and easily use that information in completing on-line forms.
January 21, 2008
Radically Clean Out All of The Debris in Your PC
John Yearsley, General Manager at Staples
John Yearsley will come in to teach us how to bring our computer back to "the way it was". He will show how to wipe our hard drive (after a careful backup of course!), and how to start over with a new fresh installation of our operating system. He will show how to install all of those programs that we use regularly and how to configure it.
Why would you do this? You get rid of all those lingering temporary files. It completely defragments your hard drive. Any hidden spyware bugs are wiped away. Your registry gets cleaned of all those lost listings. It clears out all the lingering files from programs that were installed and then deleted. You are starting with a fresh new copy of your software. And that's a great feeling!
December 17, 2007
For our December 17 meeting we had our December tradition -- A Holiday Party! One of our members shared a tip and then we opened the meeting to a party with Hors d'Oeuvers and desserts. For the tip, Barry Gordon demonstrated how to print labels using Word. This is very useful for your home, small business, or club. After Barry's tip, we celebrated the holiday season with door prizes and a raffle with some special give-aways!
November 19, 2007
How To Be Safe While Doing Your Holiday Shopping On-line
Officer Rob Riccobon from the West Hartford Police department
It’s getting close to the holiday season and it’s time to think about that special someone who deserves a gift. What better way to shop than on-line with the whole world at your fingertips. No long lines. No need to park far away and fight through the crowded holiday shoppers. Just select the goodies, add them to your shopping cart, and finally pull out your credit card and complete your purchase. It’s so easy, there’s no reason to give this a second thought... right??
At our Nov. 19th meeting, Officer Rob Riccobon from the West Hartford Police department will give us some tips for a happy and safe on-line holiday shopping experience. Shopping on line can be fun if you do it safely. Officer Riccobon will give tips on how to stay safe on the Internet.
October 15, 2007
Quarter Century Celebration
BPMUG is celebrating a quarter century of our computer users helping other computer users. That’s cause for celebration! This will be a fun meeting while we take a brief look back to what life was like in 1982 with those old computers. We have invited some of our founding members to tell us all about the fun they had tinkering and different BPMUG was then vs. now. Thanks to many dedicated volunteers over the past 25 years we have thrived and now it’s time to celebrate! After our “fireside chat” with founding members, and questions from the audience, we will have our 25th anniversary party with cake and punch.
September 17, 2007
Speed-up, Clean-up, and Maintain Your PC
Presentation by Jim Smith
Summer vacations are winding down and it is time to crank up your PC for a long winter of computing. At the September 17th meeting, we will show you how to gain control of your computer. We will demonstrate a bunch of ways that you can speed it up and clean out some of the clutter that is slowing it down. We will even pass out some “cheat sheets” so you can follow along and see how we do it. Beginners are encouraged to attend this meeting. At the end of the evening, you’ll be able to take your cheat sheet home and put some life back into your own PC. This meeting will be led by the entertaining and educational past President of BPMUG, Jim Smith.
Vacation! No meeting in August.
July 16, 2007
Make A Splash with your Summer Vacation Photos
Presentation by Dot & Dan Doll and Barry Gordon
It is Summer and time for vacations and having fun with digital photography. For those of you who have seen Dan and Dot Doll's recent digital photos, you know our July meeting will be a big splash! Dot and Dan Doll, BPMUG members and enthusiastic digital photographers, will dazzle us with wonderful underwater digital photographs they have taken. They will share techniques on how they took their photos as well as some tips on how they digitally enhanced the photos. We have paired them up with BPMUG's Photo SIG host, Barry Gordon, who will give us the highlights of Adobe Elements and give us some ideas on how to enhance our own vacation photos. Summer means fun and what better way to remember all the good times than great photos!
June 18, 2007
How Much Security is Just Right
By John Yearsley, General Manager, Staples in Mansfield, CT
We all know that the Internet -- in addition to being a wonderful and helpful tool -- has become a breeding ground for criminals, thieves, and others wishing harm to us or our data. It is estimated that in 2004, hackers bilked the computer world out of several hundred million dollars. Total related damage done to the world economy exceeds tens of billions of dollars annually.
What do we do to protect our computer from such problems? We install an antivirus program to protect us from the viruses. But we're told that's not enough. So we put a firewall on to keep the evil-doers from entering our computer or sending out data to the world. Then we are told those pesky pop-up ads are because of bugs called spyware. So we get a spyware program or two to keep the pop-up ads from slowing down our computer. Now we are starting to feel secure.
Come listen to John Yearsley talk to BPMUG about computer security in a new way... how much is not enough, too much, and just right. With all the protection out there, it is now time to find out how to keep our computer secure without slowing it to a crawl.
May 21, 2007
Everything You Want To Know About Backing Up Your Hard Drive
By Shane Schmidt of Pexagon Technology
Shane Schmidt is the Technical Marketing Manager for Pexagon Technology which is a manufacturer of personal storage devices. Shane will be answering many questions we have about hard drive back-ups -- and more specifically he will cover what is a back-up, why it’s important, how often, and different types. He will use statistics that speak to the failure rates of hard drives as well as bringing in some products to show us the different types of back up and back up devices available.
The bad old days of backing up to a stack of floppy disks is gone! Pexagon manufactures the Store-It™ Thumb Drive where one little tiny thumb size drive can hold well over two-thousand floppies worth of data!. These are available in 14 colors and laser engraved with 2 lines of text or a company logo. They've also got portable Store-It hard drives that fit in your pocket and those hold more data than eighty thousand floppies (160GB). Or they have their desktop Store-It ™ hard drive (up to 500GB). That can hold data from over 350,000 floppy disks which is even more floppy disks than AOL sent us over the years (and we got a LOT of those!). With the low cost of disk storage today, there should be no reason not to back up those valuable documents on your hard drive.
April 16, 2007
Viva la Vista!
Presentation by Vista guru, Carl Lyons
Forbes Magazine, in an article titled, "Microsoft Vista: Not 'People Ready'" critically says, "The new programs are phenomenally complex, with scores of buttons and pull-down menus and myriad connections among various applications." PC Magazine kindly states, "The new OS is far more than Windows XP with a pretty new face. Many aspects of Vista are substantive improve-ments: stronger security, better built-in apps, networking enhancements, parental controls, --and DirectX 10 graphics support, to name just a few." But elsewhere in the PC Magazine a review summarizes, "Vista offers a lot of improvements over Windows XP, but most of them are conveniences rather than essentials."
So what's the real story on Vista? Why not find out for yourself? Barry Pilver from CompUSA has made arrangements to have Vista guru, Carl Lyons, attend our April 16th meeting and show us a detailed overview of the product.
March 19, 2007
It Was A Starry Night In March...
Presentation by Jason Archer, Planetarium Director at the Children’s Museum in W.Hartford
As a kid, did you ever look up at the skies and wonder what was there? Were you fortunate enough to peer through a telescope and dream of unlocking some of the secrets of the universe? Now with help from computers, stargazing is easier and more fun than ever. Galileo would be astounded to see how advanced this technology has become. Come to the March 19th meeting and you can be astounded as well!
BPMUG's March meeting will be led by the enthusiastic director of the Planetarium at the Children’s Museum in West Hartford, Jason Archer. He will guide us through the skies and stars with three wonderful software programs: Starry Night, The Sky, and Celestia. Bring your wildest imagination of the universe to this meeting and prepare to be dazzled!
February 19, 2007
Jump On-Line With A Free Personal Web Page
Presentation by Jim Smith of Blarneystone Internet Services
Have you ever wanted to build your own personal web site? Something to let you share photos, links, and hobbies? Or with information about your family or friends? Long time BPMUG member, Jim Smith, will be our presenter for the February 19th meeting. Jim will discuss some of the options you have available to get you started. For example, through your Internet Service Provider, it is likely that you can get a free personal Web site with your subscription. They typically have a basic editor as well for building your site. Gone are the days when complicated programming skills or knowledge of HTML are needed to build your site.
Jim will show some of the options that are out there for you to get started. He will demonstrate a couple of the free programs being offered. He will talk about various options that you can use in your web site. Whether you want to learn what a blog is and how to set one up, or just want to share some family photos or to announce your upcoming family gathering, don't miss this meeting. There will be plenty of time at the end to answer your questions.
Jim has his own company, Blarneystone, LLC and has been designing web sites for businesses for 13 years. In 2000, he wrote a book, "How To Start a Home-Based Web Design Business" and the third edition was just shipped to book stores last month. He has agreed to stay after and sign books for aspiring web designers.
January 15, 2007
Cool Tools and Hot Gadgets for 2007
By Barry Pilver of CompUSA
The holidays are over and it is time to see what is new for 2007. For BPMUG's January 15th meeting, Barry Pilver will show some of the new and “hot” gadgets for 2007 that are coming out. Want to watch TV on your phone? Well it’s coming! Don’t miss out on all this fun at this exciting meeting. Bring a friend and they can drool over some of these neat goodies. When your kids or grandkids start showing off their latest techie stuff, you will be able to show off your knowledge and impress them too! So come and enjoy our meeting and have some snacks provided by Wally and Linda.
Archived Presentation Notes