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Computer Training for Elders.  We make some assumptions about who you are: ◦ You are interested in using a computer for a few basic tasks (to begin with)

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Presentation on theme: "Computer Training for Elders.  We make some assumptions about who you are: ◦ You are interested in using a computer for a few basic tasks (to begin with)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Computer Training for Elders

2  We make some assumptions about who you are: ◦ You are interested in using a computer for a few basic tasks (to begin with) ◦ You have not used computers extensively or recently (or at all) ◦ You may have some changes in vision, hearing, and movement that are common with aging

3  Computers are designed with many ways of doing almost anything.  Some “shortcuts” work in some places, but not in others.  For many, this can be confusing.

4  There is usually one way of doing things that will always work, no matter where you are.  That way is often not the shortest, fastest method, but it is consistent  This training will focus on that one way

5  If you already know a faster, shorter way, feel free to use it!  When you start thinking that there must be a shorter way to do something, that is when to ask ◦ Shortcuts often work in some places, and not in others, so we will avoid them

6 Beginning at the beginning

7  Even if you are using an “all in one” or laptop computer, it has distinct parts  Let’s look at the parts of your computer one at a time, and see what they do.

8  “Input” ◦ Getting information into your computer  “Output” ◦ Getting information out of your computer  “Processor” ◦ What happens between input and output

9  The Keyboard ◦ The keyboard is used to send language to your computer. ◦ The language can be as short as your name when accessing your ◦ It can be as long as your life story.


11  The Keyboard is designed to look and act like a typewriter keyboard ◦ The pattern of letters and numbers is very close to that of a typewriter

12 ◦ If you learned to type on a typewriter, you should be right at home ◦ If you’ve never typed (and “not for years” is the same as never), don’t worry about it. Your computer is patient.

13  There are a few differences between a typewriter and a computer that you should know about.

14 TypewriterComputer  When you press the spacebar, the paper moves over a bit, which separates words  If you want to type lots of numbers, you have to use the numbers above the letters  When you press the space bar, an invisible letter (called a space) is typed. Spaces can be of different sizes.  On some (but not all) computer keyboards, there is a numeric keypad on the right end


16  Typewriter keyboards include letters, numbers, and punctuation

17  Computer keyboards include a set of extra keys that do special “computer” things

18  On modern computers, you don’t have to remember obscure commands to make things happen.  Instead, your choices are presented as pictures (icons) or lists (menus), and you point to what you want.

19  Of course, the computer doesn’t know where your finger is, so you have to use a device called a mouse to point.  When the mouse moves across your desk, a pointer called the mouse pointer moves on the screen of your computer.


21  To move the mouse pointer, you slide the mouse across the desk.  The mouse has to be touching the desktop, or it can’t tell that it is moving. ◦ Mice are very near sighted.

22  The main part of the mouse is the “body.” Usually, the body is about the size of a bar of bath soap, and curved on the top.

23  Your mouse may have buttons down the left side, which are intended to be pressed with your thumb.

24  We won’t explore those buttons in this course, because what they do depends on the program you are using.

25  If your computer does unexpected things when you are moving the mouse, you may be accidentally pressing one of these “side” buttons

26  If that is happening, you can ask your computer service person to “turn off” the buttons

27  When you use the mouse, you will rest your hand over the body, with your thumb along one side, and your little finger along the other.  If your mouse has a cord, you hold it with the cord end at your fingertips.

28  On top of the mouse, you’ll see two buttons, and a “wheel”

29  When you hold the mouse, your index finger should lie on the “primary” button, which is usually the one on the left.  This is the mouse button you’ll use for most actions.

30  The right mouse button is sometimes used for special operations like changing the name of a file or getting details about a program.

31  Most of the time, there are other, more consistent ways of doing these functions.  Some people find, because of the changes of aging, that their index finger falls on the right button instead of the left

32  This can make using the computer confusing, because the behavior is inconsistent  If this happens to you, consider changing your mouse for a one- button type.

33  Between the mouse buttons, you will find a “wheel”  The wheel helps control what is shown on the screen

34  When your computer is on, the background is an area called the “desktop.” ◦ Because early computers were intended for office workers, the names are often similar to office equipment


36  The desktop is the “work surface” of your computer ◦ A real desk wouldn’t work well if it were stood on edge, so you should think of the top of the monitor as farther away from you. This will help when using the mouse to point to things

37  Your computer’s desktop has, or will have, different “things” on it.

38  Some of these “things” are programs that help you get work done.

39  Some of the things are work you have done, or are working on  Some are controls.

40  Each thing is represented by a picture intended to remind you of what that thing is  These pictures are called “icons”

41  Some icons look like real objects. The “Recycle Bin” looks, and acts, like a waste basket

42  Other icons are like logos. Most program icons are logos

43  The “documents” you create using your computer often look like a piece of paper with a smaller version of the program icon that made it

44  In the bottom left corner of the screen, you should see a special icon called the “Start Button”

45  You use the “Start Button” to start many computer tasks  This includes starting to stop the computer!

46  Along the bottom edge of the screen, you should see a dark bar with some small icons on it.  This is the “Task Bar.” The Task Bar shows what your computer is working on.

47  There are two special areas of the Task Bar

48  On the left, you may see some small icons for various programs.  This is the “Quick Launch” area, where programs can be started by clicking on the mini-icons

49  On the right, you may see a row of small, obscure icons

50  This is the “System Tray,” which shows things that the computer is doing in the background  Some of these “things” are useful, but most can be ignored.

51  When a program is running, it will place a “button” on the taskbar

52  You can have more than one program running on your computer at a time, just as you can have your checkbook and the letter you are writing to your sister on your real desk

53  You can jump between running programs by clicking on their buttons

54  Somewhere on your screen, you should see an arrow  This is the mouse “pointer”

55  When you “point” to something on the screen, you do it with the mouse pointer

56  When you move the mouse on the desktop, you will see the mouse pointer move on the screen

57  When you move the pointer away from you onto the desk, the pointer moves up on the computer screen.

58  Pulling the mouse toward you moves the pointer down.  Moving the mouse right or left moves the pointer to the right or left.

59  The only part of the mouse pointer that matters (the “hot spot”) is the very tip of the arrow

60  If you are using a desktop computer, there will be a box that the keyboard and monitor connect to

61  If you are using a laptop, this box is under the keyboard!  This box contains the parts of the computer that do the actual work

62 Now that you know about the parts of the computer, we can start to actually use it!

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