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Trying the New Office 2016 Preview In March, 2015, Microsoft allowed users of its Office productivity suite their first real look at the upcoming Office 2016 release in the form of a developer preview. Now, in May, it has announced a release for everyone else: the Office 2016 Consumer Preview. Right now, anyone who wants an advance look at the latest iteration of the popular software suite can have fun with their very own free, official preview copy. As expected, Office 2016 isn't a radical departure from earlier versions. Instead, it offers evolutionary steps in several directions. Preparing for the new Office 2016 Consumer Preview on your computer While getting the preview is easy enough, you need to prepare your computer for it. As with full, final releases of … Continue reading
Up until Windows 7, if you needed to reset your computer, you needed to set a full day aside for it. With Windows 8, though, you have new powers in the form of the one-click reinstall feature. It's one of the best new features introduced on Windows 8, and is usually a far better way to get a fresh new computer than using the manufacturer's DVDs or the restore partition on your hard drive. It can be a great way to spring-clean your computer each year. One-click reinstall Microsoft internally terms its new Windows feature push-button reset. In Windows itself, it comes in two versions, labeled PC refresh and PC reset. The first one keeps your files and simply refreshes your OS. The second erases everything, files and all, … Continue reading
These two tips should help you get a lot more out of Microsoft Office. Create PowerPoint videos PowerPoint puts the power in everyone's hands to create impressive multimedia presentations. You get to blend music, pictures, text and webpages into slick shows that look effortlessly professional. There's one trick that you may not be aware of yet, though -- you can turn those carefully choreographed slides into video. The trick, when you have a fully finished presentation, is to stay away from the Save button, and to instead go to Export. You can do this by clicking on File-Export-Create a video. When you hit that button, Office opens a Create a video dialog box with two drop-down menus. The first one lets you set the level of quality that you … Continue reading
Many entertainment units that you use with a television -- gaming consoles, TiVo, Roku and so on -- offer streaming over a standard called the Digital Living Network Alliance. It was developed by Sony, and is available for use on computers, too -- it can help you stream the media files on your PC over your network, through a set-top box, to your television. All you need to do is to turn your computer into a DLNA server first. How do you turn it on? You need no special software to get started with DLNA. It's built into Windows and only needs to be enabled. You only need to open Control Panel and search for the keyword media in the search box. The first search result should be Media … Continue reading
Spring-cleaning your computer isn't just about making it look clean; it's also about improved functioning and durability. With the heat stresses of summer around the corner, it's important to make sure that whatever heat is generated in your computer gets out as quickly and as efficiently as possible. Making sure of this is a great way of speeding up your computer, and chasing away all kinds of unexplained gremlins. Heat-related computer problems are for real With fans forcing air through your computer, the naturally electrically charged environment on the inside can attract and retain great amounts of dust exactly where it shouldn't. If you live in an area that has industrial pollution, this dust can actually be corrosive. The moist, salty air of a coastal region can have a … Continue reading
After you send important emails to people, say, resumes to hiring managers or anything else, do you sit around wondering if the receiver has actually seen your email? If you do, you might be interested in services that let you check. With names such as Streak and Yesware, these services let you sign up and set up tracking on specific emails that you send out. They let you know if these have been opened, what kind of device they were opened on, where receivers were when they opened them, if specific links in your email were clicked and so on. You don't need the permission of the receivers of your email for any of this information. It's obtainable without consent. It's called pixel tracking, and it's low-tech The technology … Continue reading
As common as Wi-Fi is, there are a number of holdouts. At many hotels, for instance, guests nothing more than wired Internet access in each room. Wi-Fi isn't always desirable when you have it, either - with many hotspot providers, the process of obtaining Wi-Fi login keys and applying them tends to be anything but smooth. If you have access to the Internet over an Ethernet port, though, you get through much more quickly. Go around with your own Wi-Fi router If you have an old Wi-Fi router lying around the house, it should accompany you when you travel. When you encounter a hotel room with an Ethernet port, you simply need to plug your router in. It will manage to turn your wired signal to the Internet into … Continue reading
YouTube evolves seemingly every day, gaining new tricks as it goes along. Here are five, fun new ones that you may not know about. Turn YouTube videos into GIFs The GIF, short, choppy video clips run in an endless loop, can be a very entertaining medium. GIFs let you capture the most interesting parts of videos and use them to great effect on any webpage. YouTube being an excellent source of material to turn into entertaining GIF files, many services now exist to help users quickly edit videos into GIFs. One of them, called gifyoutube.com , makes the job particularly easy. Whatever YouTube video you feel presents a great GIF opportunity, you simply need to edit the URL to place the letters GIF in front of YouTube.com . This … Continue reading
When you have a dozen browser tabs open, it can be hard to know which ones have sound playing that you would like to turn off. Chrome has long had a popular solution -- it places a little speaker icon on every tab with active sound. It is one of Chrome's most popular features. The feature does leave some room for improvement, though. Even when you do know which tab has sound, it can still take some work to know where on the page the offending media player is (some pages can have tiny video players buried three-quarters of the way down). The latest version of Chrome has a one-click mute function right on the tab. Since the feature is still experimental, it isn't turned on by default. It … Continue reading
It's easy to dismiss the stock Windows search engine that appears in every Explorer window. Compared to the kind of search power that Google offers, Windows Search can seem basic. In reality, though, it offers a lot. You get to index for extra speed By default, Windows only indexes a few important locations on your hard drive -- the four Libraries (Documents, Video, Pictures and Music), and email. Windows has no idea where you put anything else on your computer. This means that each time you search for a file or folder, Windows needs to laboriously go through every item on every hard drive on your computer -- a process that could take hours. Windows doesn't even try. You can fix this problem -- you only need to turn … Continue reading