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Understanding the Basics of Computers, Special Edition
April 15, 2012

Ezine issue 23

Understanding the Basics of Computers

Your source for computer tips and tricks for the beginner computer user

April 2012 Issue 23

Welcome to the April issue of Understanding the Basics of Computers. We have new pages coming out every week and the video tutorials are taking off as well. I hope the articles I have chosen in this issue help you with your computer problems or teach you something you didn't know before.

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The Training Videos that I promised are now available for purchase. If you do not see a video tutorial online that you are interested in please email me as it may not be posted yet. Visit . The Video tutorials are reasonably priced and you are able to purchase them on individual topics or as a package for a discounted price. Put code NL22 in the comments section when purchasing and I will send you the beginner Windows 7 video tutorial free with the purchase of any package.

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In this issue: Focusing on Excel 2010

I hope you find this basic information on Excel 2010 beneficial.

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Microsoft Excel is a computing software program that makes financial and professional-looking spreadsheets with ease. It is not at all difficult to use, and a short tutorial is really all that's needed for the beginner. When you first open the program, it will automatically open a new lined chart spreadsheet. From here you can enter data into the individual boxes, called "cells". If your words or numbers exceed the space allowed for each cell, you can alter the size of the cell in a couple of different ways.

The most basic way to alter the size of a cell is the same as it was in all other Microsoft Excel programs. Click on the vertical bars from the top of the sheet either to the left or right of each column. Columns are listed alphabetically unless you choose to change that as well. Once you've clicked on a vertical line of a column, a double arrow will appear and you will be able to drag it the distance you need right or left. Click away from the line, usually by clicking inside a cell, to disengage the sizing of your horizontal cells. To change the vertical size, the top to bottom size, of a cell, click on the horizontal line of any cell box you want and drag it downwards. Again click away with your mouse from the line being altered to set. Another way to do this is a little more advanced, but if you have Microsoft Excel experience or feel you can move on from this, opening your "Format" toolbox will get you to the tools to make adjustments.

Once all of your cells are the size you want them to be, you can then begin to enter data. Again there's a couple of ways to do this. Typing directly into the cell is the most obvious; be sure to hit Enter when done with each cell, as tabbing will move your cursor to a cell on the page you don't want to enter. If you're going to be doing a large amount of calculations while creating your spreadsheet, then typing your numbers into the formula box and hitting enter will also place them on the sheet. SUM is a function, or calculation tool, that is almost always automatic, so be sure to remove SUM from the function box before hitting Enter with your data or an error message will pop up.

Other tips for Excel 10 that are an absolute must. This is just a basic intro, but Excel 10 has some fabulous features. Sparklines, an addition to the program, helps put charts into a single cell so you can visualize all your data at once. This can be done from the "Insert" tab. Your perfectly created spreadsheets may need a little tweaking which can now be done anywhere if you have Windows Phone 7 or you post them online and check them with a specially downloaded app. MS Backstage will help you access and use all these advanced features.

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If you have a specific question about one of the selections do please email me at or call me at 303-931-2206 and I will help you.

I hope this issue of Understanding the Basics of Computers was helpful. If you have any suggestions for next months issue or comments on this issue please let me know.

Keep learning about your computer,
Jennifer Anderson

P.S. Look for the donate button on a few of the webpages. If you would like to help keep this site going any amount helps.

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