Six Low-Priced, Fast-Selling Netbooks

I have an Asus (got it last April), I’ve drooled over a Dell, and after reading this review of Six Low-Priced, Fast-Selling Netbooks I’m wondering if the HP wouldn’t be even better.


How to use TweetDeck

TweetDeck is the most useful application for managing Twitter that I’ve found. While many call it “intuitive,” some of my clients are intimidated by it. Perhaps they don’t realize it has tooltip-type hints when you mouse over the various buttons, or maybe the tips don’t explain enough. For those of you who want more than tooltips, here is a basic introduction to TweetDeck.

Organize your screen with these buttons

The following nine buttons function as toggles. That is, click once to open, and click again to close. They are found at the upper left of your screen. (Where appropriate, I’ve linked to some tutorials on another site that explain certain functions in more detail.)
tweetdeck-tutorial-01 [click to continue…]


How to extract urls from MS Word 2007 hyperlinks

Recently I have been creating a series of “cheat sheets” on various topics related to blogging and social media using Microsoft Word 2007. These documents are essentially an annotated list of websites related to a particular topic, which I intend to provide to my clients as an aid to their own education and research.

Having long been a WordPerfect user, I was pretty happy with how these documents were looking and how easy it was to create the hyperlinks for them. But suddenly I realized that if I wanted to print one out and hand it to someone, they would have no way of knowing where the hyperlink was pointing to. The url for each link wasn’t visible.

Surely, I thought, I was not the first person to run into this problem. Surely there is an option on some menu that will enable me to display the urls when printing. But I searched the help file to no avail. I checked out three different books on the new version of Word out of the library. Nothing.

You might think it would be easier to copy and paste each url into the document in the appropriate place than to spend time researching a software based solution. But I had already created nine of these documents, and many had over two dozen links in them. That was too much copying-and-pasting for someone who has repetitive strain issues. It was worth it to me to keep hunting for a solution that would not bring on a bout of “tennis” elbow.

I finally got help at a Google Group. Yves, from Belgium, provided me with a macro that gets the job done:

Public Function ConvertHyperlinks()
    Dim fld As Field

    For Each fld In ActiveDocument.Fields
        If fld.Type = wdFieldHyperlink Then
            Selection.InsertAfter (" (" + Replace(Split(fld.Code.Text, " ")(1), Chr(34), "") + ")")
        End If

End Function

No, I don’t know what it all means. I had a family member who is familiar with Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) look it over to make sure it wasn’t going to do something harmful before I tried it on one of my documents. To do that, I had to teach myself how to use the macro editor, but the library books helped with that.

This is just the latest example of the help I have gotten from total strangers who shared freely of their knowledge and time. I hope someone else faced with the same problem finds this helpful.


How to use WordPress’s gallery feature

WordPress 2.5 included a photo gallery feature and an image uploader that uses Flash. The documentation for these features is spotty to non-existent. I have been hunting around for information on this feature and experimenting with it on my gardening site. This is what I’ve found out so far. [click to continue…]


How to read more blogs in less time

The day comes in the life of every blog reader when they realize they are spending too much time reading blogs…and they don’t want to give up reading any of them. That’s why smart blog readers use a feed reader to help them stay on top of the blogs they read.

What’s a feed and why would I want to read one?

Feed icon 32×32So what’s a feed reader? Well, let’s back up and figure out what a feed is, first. A feed is a special kind of file that organizes its information in a form easily read by computer programs. That orange square with the arcs in it, pictured at the beginning of this paragraph, is the standard icon, letting you know that a feed file is available for you to subscribe to. The feed reader is the program that reads the file and translates it into a form easily read by humans. Feed readers differ in their features and how they arrange the information they get from the feeds. They can be a program you install on your computer or one that you access with your web browser (Internet Explorer or Firefox).

Getting started with Bloglines and Firefox

I am going to talk about about the online feed reader that I use: Bloglines. Bloglines is free, and has a lot of features you will appreciate after you get familiar with it. [click to continue…]