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Columns : Computer Korner Last Updated: Feb 6, 2017 - 2:32:04 PM

Your Weekly Computer Tips by WorldStart
Apr 3, 2011 - 7:18:23 AM

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The Bahamas Weekly is pleased to present computer tips by WorldStart.com

Get the latest Technology news, helpful computer and software tips, discounts on new gizmos and gadgets that make life easier!

This week: In the News (this week in technology) learn about the new Apple iPad, and latest Skype version; The difference between Windows XP Home and XP Pro; Tips on MS Office; learn more about cell ranges in Excel formulas; Learn how to Auto-Forward Emails to Multiple Email Addresses; and how do Restrict Unwanted Web Sites...

Quick Tips

Google Recipes

If you're looking for a new recipe to help break you out of a "food rut", then maybe it's time to give Google a try. It might sound odd, but the "Big G" can help you find all sorts of new and tasty things to make, plus you can refine your searching to accommodate for time constraints or certain ingredients!

Here's how:

Browse over to Google.com and type in a dish - I used Chicken Cordon Bleu, for example. A few recipes and pictures should pop up, but if you click Recipes off in the left-hand column Google turns into the coolest cookbook ever!

Not only will it show you all the recipe results for the dish in question, but it'll give you options for low calorie versions or even recipes that take less time to make! You can even refine your recipe search to exclude (or include) certain ingredients!

Note: If you don't see a Recipes option in the left-hand column, click the More button.

Get cookin'!

Tip of the Day

How to Set Up Email Aliases in Hotmail

Microsoft has recently introduced a new and innovative email feature for Hotmail users. Hotmail Email Alias, as it is coined, allows Hotmail users to setup aliases using their existing Hotmail account.

What is an Email Alias?

Email alias is an alternate email ID that is mapped to any existing email address. The core idea behind these aliases is to avoid spam to enter in your original email address. So if you have an email address that you are using for your official or private matters, and you don't want it to be crowded with spam, having an email alias can be very handy and useful.

Email Aliases offered by Other services

Email alias is not a new thing altogether, lot of email services allow users to generate a dummy sort of email alias with the inclusion of a "+" sign to the main email address. For example, if johnathan@hotmail.com is a primary email address of a user, adding up a "+" sign with a description word like "blogger" would generate an alias that is jonathan+blogger@hotmail.com. This generated alias would be mapped to the original email ID and spam can be avoided. But the main problem with this particular method is that anyone can figure out the primary email ID from the structure and spam will still keep on coming.

MS Office

MS Word: Location and Text Wrapping in One Setting

It's not uncommon for us to find ourselves dragging a picture or drawing object around a document to place it where we need it, and then to turn around, go back to the Ribbon to set the word wrapping.

Let's face it, sometimes it feels like a good 10 minutes before we're done tinkering with these basic things, after inserting a picture or drawing object.

If you start throwing in the whole size, shape, recoloring and other settings, you're now looking at pretty good time investment.

Understand that I think that the time is well spent when the final document is revealed, and it really shines when compared to the "plain Jane" thing that it could have been.

However, it seems to me that if I can find a shortcut or two to speed up the process, without reducing the quality of the effects usually applied, I'm thinking that it's a good idea and worth exploring.

If you agree that the idea of a shortcut to enhancing your Word documents is worth exploring, click here for more.

If you'd like to learn more about the Hotmail alias feature, click here.

Computers 101

Can you please go over what Web site certificates are? I'm having a little trouble understanding their purpose. Thanks for all your help!

Wow, you guys come up with some really great questions! I have to tell you, the Q&A section of the newsletter is my favorite, because often times, the questions that are asked are ones that can help everyone. They're not just about one person's computer or about one specific problem someone is having. No, you all ask questions about very broad topics and that's perfect for this part of WorldStart's newsletter. We want to help as many people as we can and I truly believe we're doing that by answering the questions you ask. And today's topic is no exception. You asked about Web site certificates and that's exactly what you're going to learn all about today!

First of all, if a certain company or organization wants their Web site to use encryption and be secure, they must obtain a site (or host) certificate. If they don't, they will not be registered as a secure Web site. So, how do you tell if a site is secure or not? Well, we've gone over this before, but let's cover it one more time, just to be sure we're all on the same page. There are two things you can check on to find out if a site is secure or not. The first is generally some type of lock or key symbol, usually located in the address bar. The second is how the Web site's URL reads. On a secure site, the very beginning part will always be "https," rather than just "http." That extra "s" makes all the difference when it comes to security.

So, if you're visiting a site, and you see either of those things, the site will have a certificate. Clicking on the icon in the address bar in either Internet Explorer or Firefox, will bring up a menu from which a certificate can be viewed.

Internet Explorer


Once you do that, a certificate dialogue box will pop up and you can read all about it. It will tell you the purpose of the certificate, who it's issued to, who it was issued by and when it expires. (If the site you're on just uses the "https" method, just double click in the area where the padlock usually sits. Doing that will bring up the same certificate box for you). For example, when you purchase something from WorldStart's software store, the checkout page is secure. If you click the icon in the address bar of that page, you will be able to see our certificate.

Another way you can view a site's certificate, is through your browser's menu options. In Internet Explorer, go to File, Properties

In the Properties dialog box, click the Certificates button.

The same dialogue box will then come up for you.

In Firefox, go to Tools and select Page Info

Under the Security tab, click on the View Certificate button to see that site's certificate.

That may be an easier way for you to access the certificate information.

Site certificates are mainly put in place to protect users from malicious attacks and identity theft. For instance, if we here at WorldStart didn't have a certificate on our checkout page, hackers could get in and steal your credit card number and any other information they wanted from you. That goes for any Web site that sells products or asks you for any personal information. It's very important to check the sites you visit, to see if they're secure or not. If you don't, you could be putting yourself at risk for big trouble. All you have to do is glance toward the top or bottom of your browser to make sure it's protected. I mean, what's a few seconds when it comes to your safety?!

If a Web site has a certificate, that means they have registered their site and everything has been approved. There are two things that have to be done before a site is approved. The certificate authority has to make sure the Web address given matches the address on the certificate, and they have to sign the certificate, so that it can be recognized as a trusted authority. You can look for both of those things when you look at a site's certificate as well. So, I'm sure you're probably wondering how much you can really trust a site's certificate, right? Well, the trust you have for a site really depends on how much trust you have for the company you're dealing with, but if all the information matches up and the date on the certificate is valid, everything should be just fine. The only other way to be sure, is to call the company yourself and check on their site regulations. It's your call!

Now, there may be times when you run into a certificate error. That could be caused by various things, such as the names on the certificates not matching up, or if the certificate has expired. If an error occurs, you will always have the opportunity to look over the certificate and you can then either accept it for good, accept it for that particular visit only or you can choose not to accept it at all. From there, you can choose whether or not to trust the site. If you do, you can go about your business, but if you don't, you should refrain from submitting any personal information. Along with checking on a site's certificate, you should also read their Privacy Policy. Keeping yourself safe is the most important thing, and you should do whatever it takes to stay that way.

So, now that you know all about Web site certificates, you may want to go and check on some of your favorite sites. Are they secure? Check it out!

Do you have a question for us? Ask it here!

Computers 101

What are those random letters and words that show up in the subject or at the bottom of many spam emails?

I get those emails too: a graphic will appear selling some product and at the top or bottom it looks like a three year-old was attacking the keyboard. Or you’ll see some random words like “goldfish tinman wart museum tragedy boxcar”. Makes for interesting beat poetry, but what does it mean?

I’ve heard a few theories about this…

Theory 1 is that bulk mail servers can generate random characters to make each email different, thus fooling ISP filters.

Theory 2 says that since the advertisement is in the graphic, a graphic without text might be filtered out.

Theory 3 reasons that some recipients will send a reply asking, “What’s that gibberish at the bottom of your email?”. This will verify a valid address allowing the e-spammers to send you more UCE (Unsolicited Commercial Email).

Theory 4 claims that it is a secret code known only to the UN, the Illuminati, Aliens, or the CIA.

The true reason for this, however, is zsvnln zsk dvm ksm a skddc cmisd mim ew foxtrot greenbean elbow nautical!


If you are one the seven hundred buh-zillion people that have an iPhone, then you know how many applications there are to download. Apart from the normal stuff like music and games, you can download things like Kidney Diets, Zoom to see the Sky kind of stuff, and even an app to do your taxes – right from your phone. So it should come as no surprise that there are now many applications for helping you to quit smoking.

To see how legitimate these apps really are, Lorien Abroms and colleagues at the George Washington University in Washington DC scored how well the 47 quit-smoking apps adhered to the US Public Health Service's 2008 guidelines for treating tobacco use and dependence. The apps were marked for how well twenty of the guidelines were covered, were given up to three marks per guideline, with a possible total score of sixty.

Cathy Backinger and Erik Augustson at the US National Cancer Institute agree that users and health professionals should not be "overly optimistic" about smartphone apps, because many have not been tested for their scientific benefits. For example, 6 per cent of the apps in this study use "hypnosis" techniques to encourage people to quit smoking. (From your iPhone?)

The scores are in, and on average the apps received a dismal 7.8 out of 60 (I hope these apps were free). The winner was Quit Smoking - Cold Turkey with 30 points; among the losers that received 0 points was Daily Tracker. Not many apps even referred the user to recommended treatments, a quit line, clinic or reaching out to friends and family for support. Like those work, anyway.

You think a smartphone won't help you quit smoking? A friend of mine who smokes like a train is giving hers up.

Her smartphone, that is. Not her cigarettes.

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Your Weekly Computer Tips by WorldStart