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Understanding the Basics of Computers, Issue #001 -- teaser here
December 01, 2008

Ezine issue 02

Understanding the Basics of Computers

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

November 30, 2008 Issue 02

Sorry I am late with this E-zine. With the holidays my schedule got a little crazy. I hope every one enjoyed the 1st issue and I think you will find some useful information in this issue. Let me know what you think there is plenty of time to make changes. I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I had a great time with my family and friends. As for the articles in this issue I am trying hard to give the most useful information I can come up with that will help you with your computer woes. My website is still a work in progress so check it regularly for new tutorials. If you have any suggestions for the website please email me at and let me know what you think or what you would like me to add.

In this issue:

  • Clean your temp files
  • Digital Cameras
  • External storage

Clean your temp files

I donít know if you have ever cleaned out your temporary files but most of the time this can solve some of your computer problems as far as your computer running slow or not having enough storage on your computer. Temporary files are files that your computer uses to access things more quickly while you are using a program or downloading something from the internet. These files are usually only used the 1 time and then are just left on your computer to take up space. Viruses can also hide in this file.

Cleaning temp files is a good maintenance practice.

  • To do this click on My Computer
  • Right click on your C: drive and click Properties
  • Make sure the Microsoft Exchange, POP3, IMAP, or HTTP radio button is selected then click Next.
  • The Local disk clean up window will come up and about Ĺ way down the window you will see the Disk Cleanup button. Click on it.
  • Another Disk Clean up window will come up and begin the process. It will take a little while depending on how much cleaning is needed.
  • When the process is finished another window will come up with a list of files for you to clean up. The ones I recommend that you check are the Temporary internet files, your recycle bin, and Temporary files.
  • Once you have made your selections click OK.
  • This process will also take a few minutes.

That is all there is to it. You only need to do this maybe once a month if you are using your computer a lot, if you donít use your computer that often maybe only every 6 months. This is an easy process that will save you some headaches in the future.

Digital Cameras

Everyone is moving to the digital era with cameras. They are becoming affordable and very easy to use. Most local stores even have the printing stations for you to print your photos.

If you are shopping for a new digital camera I want to give you some tips on what to look for.

  1. The 1st thing every one looks at is megapixels . here is a good chart.
  2. Camera megapixels Good quality photos Best quality photos
    4-5 MP 11" x 14" 5" x 7"
    6-7 MP 16" x 20" 8" x 10"
    8 MP 17" x 22" 8" x 10"
    10 MP 20" x 30" 11" x 14"

  3. The next question people have is how much memory do I need? The memory depends on the number of megapixels your camera is. The more megapixels you have the more space the picture takes up.
  4. Camera mega pixels 4 MP 5MP 6MP 8MP
    Images on a 64MB memory card 40-50 35-40 27-32 20-23
    Images on a 128MB memory card 91-100 70-78 57-63 38-42
    Images on a 256MB memory card 171-189 141-157 113-125 75-83
    Images on a 512MB memory card 362-400 283-313 226-2504 151-167
    Images on a 1GB memory card 724-800 565-625 452-500 301-333

  5. Zoom - Optical zoom is how far your camera's lens can physically extend from the camera body (its focal length). Optical zoom allows you to get closer to your subject without physically getting closer. Also, optical zoom gets you closer without your photo getting blocky or pixelated. Digital zoom picks up where optical zoom leaves off by stretching your camera's pixels to make a photo look bigger. It's the same thing as cropping a photo and enlarging it, but its done right in the camera. The benefit to digital zoom is that it can get you much closer than optical zoom, but the result may be a lower quality photo. Total zoom is calculated by multiplying the optical zoom by the digital zoom. For example: 3x optical x 8x digital = 24x total zoom

These are the basic features you need to look for when purchasing a digital camera. If you have any questions email at

External storage

With everyone going to digital storage can become a big problem, especially if you own an older computer. External hard drives are easy to connect to your computer and can give you the extra space you need for your pictures, videos, or music.

I have seen external hard drives for as little as $59.00 for 250GB. Most of the older computers donít have more than an 80GB hard drive. This seemed like a lot at the time you purchased your computer but now it is not enough for the digital era.

The external hard drive can be connected to your computer with a standard USB cable. It will come with software to install on your computer. When you are finished installing it the hard drive will appear in the My Computer Window as another letter drive. You will be able to access it the same way you access any other folders on your computer.

I use mine to back up my computer as well as store all of my videos and pictures. It never hurts to back up your files.

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. If you would like to purchase ad space in my e-zine please mail me with Ad in the subject line.

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