All posts by wtipton2

Tech Tip Advanced Web Search Techniques

Internet search techniques

The internet is big, really, really big.  And it keeps growing bigger every day.  If you want to search it effectively you’re going to need to develop a couple of tricks to help you narrow the search.  Here’s a few real easy ones to integrate into your next search:

Using +, – and “ “ (quotes)
to narrow your searches:

Lets say you were looking up apples on Google.com.  If you just type in “apples” you get 22 million returns.  A few more sites than you can check in an afternoon so lets narrow the search down.  Let’s say that what you’re really interested in is green apples.  To see all the apple websites that also have the word “green” on them type this:

search1

Now you will only see those apple sites that also have the word green on them.  Unfortunately we are still getting almost 6 million returned websites:

search2

To narrow the search even more lets eliminate a word.  For example, some of the websites are also about Apple Computers so lets get rid of them by typing this:

search3

That reduced about 1 million of the returns but we still have about 5 million web pages to check out.  A final way to narrow the search is to use quotes to narrow the search to an exact phrase.  For example if what we’re really interested in is granny smith apples we can add that to the search like this:

search4

Now I will only see websites that have the words “granny smith” on them in that order spelled the way I spelled them.  Using quotes is always a great way to narrow a search and in my example I was able to go from having 22 million web pages returned from my original search for “apples” to around 220,000 by my last example.

Google forms Tab Tab Type

tab tab type

When I first saw that the new Google Forms only has one option for multiple choice I was disappointed. Using the mouse is something I try to avoid. Tab and keyboard shortcuts can help me be super productive when creating. Happily a few tricks makes it a snap to create a Google Form.

Tab and Type

When adding a question to Google Forms, the default is a multiple choice question. (Control Shift Enter creates a new question by the way.) Type the question, press Tab, press Tab again to type the first answer option.

Press Tab again to go to option 2. DO NOT TOUCH THE MOUSE! Do not delete. Just start typing. You do not have to click on “Add option.” Just type.

Press Tab and press Tab again to add a 3rd option. DO NOT TOUCH THE MOUSE. Just start typing.

Notice in the GIF below that I added and created a multiple choice question without using the mouse. If you look closely the mouse icon does not move until the end when I end the recording.
Google Forms Making a Multiple Choice Question

Tech Tip 10/21/16 Keyboard Shortcuts for the Windows Wiz

WIN Key

When I start working on the computer, I mostly tend to head straight to the start menu so let’s go there. To bring up the start menu using the keyboard, just press the START key (also called the WIN key) which is normally at the bottom left of the keyboard close to the spacebar. It will have a small Microsoft symbol on it. It varies slightly in design according to what keyboard you’re using but it looks something like this :

win-key-medium.jpg

Then once the start menu pops up, just use the arrow keys on your keyboard to choose your desired program and hit enter to run it.

The WIN key is actually very versatile and goes to the heart of being able to whiz around your desktop without the mouse. For example, if you do WIN + R, you can get the Run box (try it). WIN + E opens Explorer (your hard drive), WIN + D minimizes all your windows and takes you to the desktop, WIN+L locks your screen and WIN + TAB moves you from one open application to another.

 

FILES

While working in an application…

 

Save the file before closing, just do CTRL + S. To print the file, do CTRL + P.

Cut / Copy / Paste / Undo

Obviously everyone knows the copy and paste functions (CTRL + C and CTRL + V). But how many people know that to cut something is CTRL + X. Or to undo the previous action is CTRL + Z.

Tech Tip October 7 2016

Google is commonly used to search for information, but it has a lot of “hidden” features that can save you time!




Instructions:

1. Go to www.google.com
2. In the  search window, try the following:




Calculator

Type a calculation and press enter.
You’ll see the answer in the results window.
Use the asterisks (shift + 8) for the multiplication symbol and the slash (under the question mark) for the division symbol.

  • 25 + 35 * 3 / 4 – 2
  • 1535 – 276
  • 14 * 3 – 6




Conversion Tool

Type something similar to one of the following  and press enter:

Be sure to use the word “in.”

  • 1 mile in feet
  • 1 cup in tablespoons
  • 100 dollars in Euros
  • 180 c in f




Dictionary

Type “Define” and then the word you want defined:

  • define pragmatic
  • define congruent
  • define socialism




Weather

Type the word “weather” and then the city (or city and state) and then press return to see the weather conditions for the next 5 days:

  • weather Wichita
  • weather London
  • weather Portland, OR

Add Images & Videos to Google Slides – Easy as 1, 2, 3!

Getting Ready

  1. Open a Google Slide.
  2. Pull down the Tools menu to Research.

  3. This will open a research window at the right side of the page.

Finding & Adding Images or Videos

  1. In the research window at the right, click the triangle in the search bar and pull down to “Images” or “Videos.”

  2. Enter search keyword(s).

  3. Select the desired image or video and click the “Insert” button – or just grab the desired image or video and drag it onto the slide!

Options

  • Want clip art instead of photos? Just add the words “clip art” within the search window.

  • For copyright friendly images, click the triangle under the search window for options.

  • To play a video on the slide:
    – In the Edit mode, double-click the video.
    – In the Present mode, click the play button.

Tech Tip of the Week: 5 Awesome Google Spreadsheet Formatting Tricks

Tip #1:
Line Break within Cell

How-to:
To force a line break (a.k.a. carriage return or hard return) within a cell, use:
Control + Enter
or
Alt + Enter

Example:


Tip #2:
Use Multiple Columns for Hanging Indents

How-To:
Use the left column for the number and the right column for the text.
Note – Format as “Plain Text” to get “1.” into the cell.
Update – Just found out from Brad Medbery on Facebook that you can begin any text string with an apostrophe and it will automatically format it as “plain text.” Try entering “1.” and then enter ” ‘1. ” and you’ll see the difference!

Example:


Tip #3:
Turn Off Gridlines

How-to:
Pull down the View menu to toggle “Gridlines” off and on.
Note – It is best to create the page first, and then turn off the Gridlines.

Example:
Same sheet with and without gridlines:


Tip #4:
Use Border Colors!

 How-to:

The index card below was created with:
– a black outer border
– a red bottom border
– blue horizontal borders

Example:


Tip #5:
Add Free-hand Drawings

 How-to:
1. Pull down the Insert menu to “Drawing.” This will open a new “Drawing” window.
2. In the drawing window, click the “Line” tool and select the “Scribble” option.

… 
3. Draw on the screen.
4. Click the “Save and Close” button.
5 . Move and resize the drawing as desired.

Example: