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Computer Comfort Using a Computer at the Library Introduction Today, we will learn about the parts of a computer and how they work Our goal for this class is to help you be comfortable using a computer in the Bemis Public Library

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Computer comfort l.jpg

Computer Comfort

Using a Computer at the Library

Bemis Public Library


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Introduction

  • Today, we will learn about the parts of a computer and how they work

  • Our goal for this class is to help you be comfortable using a computer in the Bemis Public Library

  • Before we start, let’s find out what you already know about computers

Bemis Public Library


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Topics for Today

  • Computer Hardware

  • Computer Stations in the Bemis Public Library

  • Computer Software

  • Computer Software Available at the Bemis Public Library

  • Using a Keyboard and Mouse

Bemis Public Library


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Class Goal

Our goal today is to enable you to identify basic computer hardware and software. In addition, we hope you will become more comfortable using the specific hardware and software that make up the libraries’ computer stations.

Keyboard

CPU

Mouse

Sound

Software

Printer

Diskette

Windows

Monitor

Bemis Public Library


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What a Computer Is…and Is Not

  • A computer is a tool that enables you to enter, find and manipulate information.

  • A computer contains only the software and information that human beings have entered.

  • A computer is not an all-knowing oracle that can provide you with any information you desire.

  • As powerful as modern computers are, you must tell the computer what to do—the computer cannot think on its own..

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Computer Hardware

  • Information Processing

  • Input Devices

  • Output Devices

  • Information Storage

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Information Processing

  • The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the most important part of a computer. The CPU processes instructions, performs calculations and manages the flow of information throughout the computer system. The CPU communicates with input, output and storage devices to perform tasks.

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Output Devices

  • An output device lets a computer communicate with you. These devices display information on a screen, create printed copies or generate sound. A monitor, printer and speakers are all output devices.

Bemis Public Library


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Output Devices—Printing

  • All printing costs 10 cents per page. Use “Print Preview” so you know exactly what you are printing and how it looks.

  • The library uses special software to control printing. You must view and respond to each message you receive regarding your print job before it will be sent to the printer.

  • To receive your print job, you must go to station #11, select your print job on the screen and deposit money to pay for your print job.

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Input Devices

  • An input device lets you communicate with a computer. You can use input devices to enter information and issue commands. A keyboard, mouse and joystick are all input devices.

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Information Storage

  • A storage device reads and sometimes records information. The computer then uses this information to perform tasks. You can create and store your own information or read information created by someone else, for example, a software company like Microsoft.

  • Popular examples of storage devices include the hard drive in the CPU (C drive), the “floppy” diskette drive (A drive), and the CD-ROM drive (D drive).

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Information Storage at the Library

  • The only way to save computer files at the library is on 3 ½ inch “floppy” diskettes. Any files saved to an individual computer workstation’s hard drive (C drive) will be removed. In the time between your placing the file on the hard drive and its removal by the Information Services Department, please be aware that ANYONE who uses that workstation will be able to access your file.

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How to Use “Floppy” Diskettes

  • Insert the diskette, with the metal shutter and directional arrow facing up and forward, in to the drive until you hear the diskette “click” into the drive. The diskette will be completely inside of the computer case. To remove the diskette, push the black button located next to the diskette drive and the diskette will pop back out of the drive.

  • To store information on the diskette, make sure the tab on the back of the diskette is in the unlocked position. You may also move the tab to the locked position in order to “write protect” a diskette. Write protecting a diskette means that no information on it may be added or deleted.

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“Floppy” Diskette Cautions

  • Please be aware that because of a change in the Microsoft diskette formatting program, “floppy” diskettes formatted with versions of Windows earlier than 2000 may not work in the library’s computers.

  • Please make sure all application programs are completely closed and the small light next to the “floppy” diskette drive is off before removing your “floppy” diskette or you may permanently damage information on your “floppy” diskette.

  • Protect your “floppy” diskette from heat, dirt and magnets. Some common magnet risks include paper clip holders, document holders and phone cords.

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Peripherals

Common place, but still confusing, is the frequent use of the word peripheral to describe input, output and storage devices. There are many computer accessories described as peripherals, some of them include:

  • Scanners

  • Digital Cameras

  • Palm (hand-held computer)

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Computer Stations in theBemis Public Library

  • Computer Case: CPU; Hard Drive (C:); Floppy Diskette Drive (A:); CD-ROM (Read Only); Modem/T1 Line

  • Monitor

  • Keyboard

  • Mouse

  • Headphones

  • Printer Connection via Network

  • Value of each computer station--$1,500.00

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Computer Software

  • Software is a set of electronic instructions that tells a computer what to do. There are two major categories of software, operating systems and applications.

Bemis Public Library


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Operating System--Microsoft Windows NT

Computer Reservation System—

PC Res

Websense Filter (all computer stations except #1 and #2)

Applications

Word (Word Processing)

Excel (Spread Sheet)

Access (Database)

Publisher (Desktop Publishing)

Power Point (Presentation)

Explorer (Internet Browser)

Computer Software Available at Bemis Public Library

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Using Software at the Bemis Public Library

  • Because of the security programs in use at the library, the Windows “Start” button has been disabled.

  • Each software program is represented by an icon on the computer desktop.

  • To open a program, double click on the icon. Or, single click on the icon and then hit the “Enter” key on the keyboard.

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Reserving a Computer Station

  • A computer sign-in and reservation system is used for all public computers on the lower level of the library.

  • There is a uniform 30-minute time limit, with additional time available if no one is waiting.

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Using the Keyboard

  • The keys on a keyboard let you enter information and instructions into a computer.

  • Most programs let you select commands by using keyboard shortcuts. These shortcuts are often shown on the drop-down menus in the Windows operating system.

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Keyboard—Escape Key

You can press “Esc” to quit a task you are performing.

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Keyboard—Caps Lock and Shift Keys

These keys let you enter text in uppercase (ABC) and lowercase (abc) letters. Press “Caps Lock” to change the case of all letters you type. Press the key again to return to the original case. Press “Shift” in combination with another key to type an uppercase letter.

Bemis Public Library


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Keyboard—Ctrl and Alt Keys

You can use the “Ctrl” or “Alt” key in combination with another key to perform a specific task. For example, in some programs you can press “Ctrl” and “s” to save a document.

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Keyboard—Windows Key

You can press the “Windows” key (look for the Microsoft icon of the moving window) to quickly display the Start menu when using Windows 95, 98 or NT operating systems. Because of the security on the library’s computers, you will not be able to use the Start menu.

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Keyboard—Spacebar

You can press the “Spacebar” to insert a blank space.

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Keyboard—Application Key

You can press the “Application” key (look for the rectangle with an arrow pointing to the solid white section at the top) to quickly display the shortcut menu for an item on your screen. This is the keyboard alternative to right clicking the mouse.

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Keyboard—Enter Key

You can press “Enter” to tell the computer to carry out a task. In a word processing program, press this key to start a new paragraph.

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Keyboard—Arrow Keys

These keys let you move the cursor around the screen.

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Keyboard—Numeric Keypad

When the “Num Lock” light is on, you can use the number keys (0 through 9) to enter numbers. When the “Num Lock” light is off, you can use these keys to move the cursor around the screen. To turn the light on or off, press “Num Lock”. The numeric keypad is laid out like a “10-Key” adding machine.

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Keyboard—Status Lights

These lights indicate whether the “Num Lock” or “Caps Lock” features are on or off.

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Keyboard—Delete Key

You can press “Delete” to remove the character to the right of the cursor.

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Keyboard—Insert Key

Pressing the “Insert” key turns on a feature called overwrite which enables you to type over characters so that each new character your enter replaces the old one visible on the screen.

Bemis Public Library


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Keyboard—Backspace Key

You can press “Backspace” to remove the character to the left of the cursor.

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Keyboard—Function Keys

These keys let you quickly perform specific tasks. For example, in many programs you can press the “F1” to display help information. The use of function keys is determined by the software application in use at the time.

Bemis Public Library


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Using the Mouse

  • A mouse is a handheld pointing device that lets you select and move items on your monitor screen. A mouse can come in various shapes, colors and sizes.

  • To use the mouse, rest your hand on the mouse, use your thumb and two rightmost fingers to move the mouse on the desk. Use your two remaining fingers to press the mouse buttons.

  • When you move the mouse on your desk, the pointer on the screen moves in the same direction. The pointer assumes different shapes (i.e.: an arrow, a hand, an “I” beam) depending on its location on the screen and the task you are performing. Alternatives to a mouse include a joystick, touchpad and trackball.

Bemis Public Library


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Mouse Actions—Click

  • Click to select an item on the screen.

  • To click, press and quickly release the left mouse button.

Bemis Public Library


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Mouse Actions—Double Click

  • Double click to open a document or start a program.

  • To double click, quickly press and release the left mouse button twice.

  • The keyboard alternative is to use a single click to select an item and then to press the “Enter” key on the keyboard.

Bemis Public Library


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Mouse Actions—Drag and Drop

  • Dragging and dropping makes it easy to move an item on the screen.

  • Position the pointer over an item on the screen and then press and hold down the left mouse button.

  • Still holding down the button, move the pointer to where you want to place the item and then release the button.

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Mouse Actions—Right Click

  • Right click to display a list of “context sensitive” commands on the screen. This means only those commands you can use immediately will display.

  • To right click, press and release the right mouse button.

Bemis Public Library


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Mouse Actions—Wheel

  • A wheeled mouse has a wheel between the left and right mouse buttons.

  • You can often use this wheel to scroll through information or zoom in and out.

Bemis Public Library


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Mousercize

  • If you would like some practice using the mouse, try Mousercize.

  • This online tutorial will guide you through the use of the mouse within an interactive website.

  • To go to the Mousercize website, enter the following address. http://www.3street.org/mouse/

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What We Have Learned Today

  • Today, we have talked about computer hardware and software as well as unique features of the library’s computer stations.

  • The best way to increase your comfort level when using a computer is to practice, practice, practice.

  • Do you have any questions about what we’ve talked about today?

Bemis Public Library


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Learn More About Computers

  • Sign up at the Reference Desks for our other classes: Introduction to Windows; Learn Internet Explorer; How to Search on the Internet.

  • Check out books like How to Use Computers by Lisa Biow (004.16).

  • Read magazines like PC World and Wired in the library’s periodicals department.

  • Take computer classes at facilities like: Arapahoe Library District; Douglas H. Buck Community Center; Arapahoe Community College.

Bemis Public Library


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