Technology Blog

Party Planning Online

evite

Now that my whole family is on the email bandwagon, planning parties, potlucks and holidays is super easy! Free online tools like Punchbowl and evite help hosts and hostesses keep track of who is attending and who is bringing what -- or whom! I encourage you to try one out, maybe for a big Memorial Day potluck!

If you have a big family or lots of friends, you've probably experienced the agony of planning a potluck. Was Jenny bringing pecan pie? Or did she say coleslaw? I've been bombarded with emails to the effect of, "What can I bring? I was thinking ham." But Dad already agreed to bring ham, so then it's a phone call, text messages or emails to Dad and Jenny, and some Advil.

What's the Deal with Facebook Timeline?

Facebook Like

Facebook Timeline has been making big waves- but what is it?  Why all the commotion?  Is it mandatory? And most importantly, how do you use it? 

Good questions, all of them!

In a nutshell, Timeline is well, a timeline of your activities on Facebook.  You can tell someone has installed Timeline by the giant photo that dominates the top of their profile page.  But Timeline is not just a visual change.  It also allows users to

One for you, nineteen for me. Or just e-file for free.

If you’re like me, you’ve been putting it off for as long as humanly possible – but it’s time, my friend. April 17th will be here soon: it’s tax time. Luckily, however, the days of forgetting to include a deduction and having to white-out your 1040 are gone – anyone can file online and let someone else do the math (though it never hurts to double-check).  There are a couple of options for your federal taxes, depending on your income and confidence in your tax-filing capabilities:

Google Better!

Google

Google is a very powerful tool, particularly if you know how to use it correctly.  Try a few of the simple tips shared here, and you'll be on your way to Googling better!

All locations of the Denver Public Library will be closed on Monday, March 26, in observance of Cesar Chavez Day. Wait. Cesar who? Let's use Cesar Chavez to practice some advanced Google search techniques.

Tell Yo Grandma! Computer Basics Classes Start Next Week

If you're reading this blog chances are good that you know how to use the computer. But do your grandparents? How about your neighbors, your friends, your aunts & uncles, your co-workers? We all know people who don't know how to use the computer and wish they could! Well, tell 'em that their time has come. The CTC offers a free series on computer basics, and the cycle starts next week.

Monday, 3/5, 2-3:30 p.m., Getting Started - Spend time getting to know the mouse, because you won't go far without clicking!

Monday, 3/12, 2-3:30 p.m., Internet 101 - Learn about the Internet - what it is, how to navigate it and how to search for information.

Monday, 3/19, 2-3:30 p.m., Yahoo! Email Basics - Learn how to set up and operate an email account; even if you already have an account you can learn how to make the best use of it.

Teens + Technology = TEEN TECH WEEK!

Teen Tech Week

Have a teenager in your life? Are you a teenager? Then come down to a branch of the Denver Public Library this March 4th – 10th for Teen Tech Week! We’ll be exploring all things tech, from modding your gadgets to making music, with classes just for teens.

Check out the full schedule of events, including events across almost all of the branches of the Denver Public Library system. I wanted to highlight some of the events that will be happening here at Central, most of which will be on the 4th floor in the Community Technology Center.

Get a Job Already!

Do you have a resume that looks like you typed it one-handed and blind-folded on a typewriter in 1986? Worse yet, do you not have a resume at all and you're on the job hunt?

Nowadays a resume is a must, whether you're looking for a contractor gig or applying to be the next CEO of Apple. Never fear, we’re here to help! The CTC’s resident job seeking experts have created a Resume Basics class designed to give you the know-how to create a sleek, professional resume that highlights your good sides and downplays your not-so-good sides.

Geeking Out For Teen Tech Week

People and places of Virginia Village

Teen Tech Week is March 4th - 10th. As it gets closer, I want to highlight some of the neat things you can do with the programs installed on the public PCs at your local branch, starting with some image editing in a program called GIMP.

GIMP is free software for manipulating images and is installed on all of our public PCs. You can find it in the Start menu under Utilities.

It is a very robust, powerful program that you can spend a lot of time getting to know. (See the documentation and some tutorials at gimp.org/docs.) What I want to share with you is a very simple and specific procedure: creating an animated gif like the one at the top of this post.

FREE Online Entertainment

Computers are great. Seriously, think of all they do for us. They spell check our horribly written term papers, they help us find dinner for date night, and they help us keep in contact (some say too much so) with all our friends on Facebook. Most importantly tho, they can distract us for hours on end when we are trapped inside by a couple feet of snow. Here are some suggestions of places you can go for free online entertainment:

Music:

Pandora.com - On Pandora you can create radio stations that play the type of music you like. You start with an artist or song and Pandora tries to find similar songs for you to listen to; this has the added bonus of being a great way to learn about new bands!

Grooveshark.com - Grooveshark allows you to create a playlist by searching for artists or titles you like. You then drag them into a play bar and it will play the songs you have chosen in the order you have put them in.

Don’t forget to backup!!!

computer fail

Many of us are familiar with this scenario: You’ve just spent a lot of time working hard at the computer when the computer turns off unexpectedly or crashes. Or maybe it catches a virus that destroys the whole system! Without a way to retrieve your data, all that hard work is gone. To save time and avoid frustration, start getting in the habit of backing up.

A few of my favorite backup software choices are:

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