Thursday, March 12, 2009


The Internet Browsers

What's a BROWSER?

Definition: A browser is a software program that lets you explore the World Wide Web to find text, graphics, sound, movies, games, chats and more.


A browser helps you link to pages on websites around the world. To find a website, type in a URL (web address) in the address window or click a link or a button in the toolbar.

Bookmarks and Favorites
With over 100 million websites and more coming online daily, you will undoubtedly find ones you want to revisit. Bookmarks and Favorites save Web addresses so you can return to them quickly, without having to retype them. Whether you are using Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Netscape Navigator or another browser, the procedure is similar.

To save a web page, go to Bookmarks or Favorites on the menu bar and click on Add to... When you open your list, the title of the page you added will appear at the bottom of the list. To access the page, double-click on the title.

Here's another way to bookmark a web page: click on this page once with your right mouse button and select Add Bookmark or Add to Favorites from the pop-up menu.

Put Your Links in Order

After a while you'll discover that you've got dozens of bookmarks. It's now time to organize them into folders.

If you use Internet Explorer 7.0, click on Favorites on the menu bar to open the Favorites window. Now select Organize Favorites. Click the New Folder button to create a folder, then name it. We suggest organizing your bookmarks in folders by subjects, such as Sports, Travel, News, Games, etc. Now click on each Favorite once, hold down your left mouse button and drag the Favorite into the appropriate subject folder.

With Firefox 2.0, click on Bookmarks on the menu bar to open the Bookmarks window. Now select Organize Bookmarks. Click the New Folder button to create a folder, name it, click on each Bookmark once, hold down your left mouse button and drag it into the subject folders.

Create folders to organize your Firefox bookmarks

If you use Navigator 7.0, click on Bookmarks on the menu bar, then Manage Bookmarks from the drop-down list. You can now create new folders and drag your existing bookmarks into the appropriate subject folder.

Organizing Bookmarks with Netscape Navigator 7.0


URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator. It is the Web Address of a web page, or some other kind of document, that is available on the Internet. It is the instruction to your browser regarding the exact location on the Internet of the page you want to visit.

For example: OR

The way that information is transferred by way of the browser. That is known as the protocol. In this case the browser is to use Hyper Text Transfer Protocol. (http://) The language of web pages is known as HTML, Hypertext Markup Language.

The domain name, or location of the computer on the World Wide Web which hosts the page. Once a domain is registered the information provided by that domain must have a host computer where the files are stored.

That computer is called a server.
Some places are huge collections of servers known as “server farms.” Servers which host huge collections of data must organize that data in directories or file folders. Anything following the domain name which is also followed by a slash is the name of a directory. Very large collections of data may require sub-directories, or folders within folders.

Each file in the directory must have a unique name. Some get very complicated. Spaces should not be in file names.

Using URLs

A URL can be typed into the address box on your browser. Type carefully, if one character is wrong you will not get to the page. After typing in the URL press the Enter key to go to the page.
Usually you will use a URL by following a link on another web page. After reading these instructions go to When you get there put your cursor over the CNN URL, but do not click. Your mouse pointer will change to a hand indicating that the words are a link to another page. Look in the status bar, the gray bar at the bottom of your browser window. You will see the URL of the place those words link to.

404 - File Not Found
For a variety of reasons, web pages disappear from the Internet. If the page has been moved to another server most webmasters provide a link redirecting you to the new page. If there is no link to send you to the new location you will get the message above. Try working backward in the URL.
One step at a time remove items up to the next slash then press the Enter key. If you continue to get “404 - File not found” each time, give up on the URL and search for another.

Navigating the Internet (IE)

Setting your Home Page

Assuming you are in Internet Explorer, go to the web page you want to make your home page. Lots of people make Google their home page. Click on the HOME (house) icon on the COMMAND BAR that sits just above the IE window on the right and click ADD or CHANGE HOME PAGE. Using the Standard Button toolbar and or the Command Bar.

AOL toolbar and Google toolbar

Download Google toolbar:

Customize Command Bar – right click on Command bar and click on CUSTOMIZE toolbar

Browsing with Internet Explorer

Regular browsing
Browse by keyword or web address
Tabbed browsing

Search for "Crooks and Liars"
Search for AIG and recent financial difficulties
Hurricane Ike
Find info on Golden Grove by Francine Prose

Sunday, March 8, 2009

LESSON TWO - March 11, 2009


Do a search on HOW TO USE A SEARCH ENGINE. Jot down the first 5 hits you get in the search.
Practice creating a TABLE following the notes given here.

LESSON TWO - March 11

Before we begin to talk about WORD let's go to the CONTROL PANEL and click on AUTOMATIC UPDATES.
Today I will concentrate on Microsoft Word, a word processing program for Windows and the Macintosh from Microsoft. Included in the Microsoft application suite, it is a sophisticated program with rudimentary desktop publishing capabilities that has become the most widely used word processing application on the market. The first versions of Word came out under DOS and provided both graphics-based and text-based interfaces for working with a document.

Bring up Half Step Beyond Basics on your computer.


1. First open a Word document . If you have the word icon on your desktop (see it above) double left click it and you'll be taken to Word. If it's in you PROGRAMS, click START, PROGRAMS, MICROSOFT WORD. You should be looking at a NEW document.

2. Above the open document you have various toolbars. A toolbar is a row of icons on a computer screen above the NEW window in Word that activate commands or functions when clicked. The most important ones are


Let's go over each button/icon of each toolbar and the MENU BAR.

1. Above the two toolbars is the MENU BAR. Each icon on each toolbar represents an action that you may want to perform while creating a document. Documents can include letters, papers, e-mails, essays, lists, directions, etc.

2. You can CUSTOMIZE (Add or Remove buttons) A TOOLBAR or RESET it.


A toolbar can become a floating toolbar by grabbing the control bar at the far left end of the toolbar. That gives the following window, which can be placed anywhere on the screen.

The toolbar can be restored to its original position by clicking in the blue bar at the top and dragging it back to the top of the screen.


Right-click in toolbar area - check or uncheck toolbar name.

Adding icons or buttons: Click drop-down arrow at the very end of the toolbar.


Step 1. Open your browser window and minimize it.

Step 2. Enter the following line at the top of the document:

Winter Storms

Do not use all caps anywhere on the page. The eye has difficulty scanning text in an all caps format, even including headlines.

Step 3. Highlight the line of text and perform the following actions using toolbar buttons, menu items:

Format the text to Bold
Increase font size to 18 pt.
Center the text
Press Return/Enter two times
Click Bold button to remove Bold
Return text size to default

*Note: all of these actions can be performed using the Formatting toolbar.

Step 4. Copy the following paragraph and paste it into your document two lines below the headline:

Sometimes winter storms are accompanied by strong winds creating blizzard conditions with blinding wind-driven snow, severe drifting, and dangerous wind chill. Strong winds with these intense storms and cold fronts can knock down trees, utility poles, and power lines. Storms near the coast can cause coastal flooding and beach erosion as well as sink ships at sea. In the West and Alaska, winds descending off the mountains can gust to 100 mph or more damaging roofs and other structures.

Step 5. Enter a list of trees below in the form of a bulleted list:

1. Select the items one at a time
2. Copy and paste into the Word document.
3. Select the bulleted list button:


After all bulleted points have been entered hit the Return/Enter key twice. Cursor returns to the margin.

Step 6. Highlight the five bulleted points. Go to the FORMAT menu, select Bullets and Numbering and change the style of the bullet.

Insert Symbols or Special Characters

Many Word users don't realize how easy it is to insert special characters. There are at least four ways to do it: through the Symbol dialog, using shortcut keys, automatically with AutoCorrect, or by direct keypad entry.

If you choose Symbol… on the INSERT menu, you will bring up the Symbol dialog, shown below. (If you have a slow system and/or one with many fonts installed, you may find that this dialog takes an appreciable time to appear the first time you use it in a Word session, but after that it should pop up instantly.)

In the font list in the Symbol dialog, "(normal text)" means the font you are currently using.


There are many ways to insert tables in your Word document. However, the quickest way to create a table from scratch is to use the INSERT TABLE/TABLE toolbar button.

To insert a table using this method, simply click the Insert Table/Table toolbar button when your cursor is positioned at the place in your document where you would like the table to begin.

A grid will pop up allowing you to select how many rows and columns you would like your table to contain. Simply use your mouse to select the number of rows and columns by highlighting the boxes (text at the bottom of the grid will indicate what your selection is). When you have specified the correct number of rows and columns, simply click once, and your table will be inserted.

While this method will create a table with uniform columns and rows, you can still customize your table after it is inserted by right-clicking on the table handle (the double-headed arrow at the top left corner of the table) and using the options on the shortcut menu to make changes.

You can also click VIEW/Toolbars and then click on Tables and Borders to customize the table.


Step 1. Let’s go to the Internet and find winter storm pictures. We can go from within the Word document or minimize the Word document and work in a browser.

Step 2. In the Google search box type a keyword(s). Hit return or click the big G.

Step 3. Google will return a list of links of winter storms. Click on link IMAGES at the top of the page.

Step 4. Pick a picture (thumbnail) under 100 kb. Click on the thumbnail then right click on the original image. Click SAVE IMAGE AS

Step 5. The name of the image will appear in the SAVE IMAGE window. Make sure you are saving to the DESKTOP.

Step 6. In WORD go to the INSERT menu, select PICTURE then FROM FILE... Find the picture you downloaded and highlight it. Then Click INSERT. The picture should appear in your document.

Step 7. With the picture selected, go to the FORMAT menu and select FORMAT PICTURE. There are several things that you can do with this picture.

Step 8. Resize the image by clicking and dragging. Click once on the image and it will be surrounded by eight boxes; one at each corner, and one in the middle of each line.

If you click on a box in the middle of a line and drag outward from the center of the image you will change only the width or height of the picture, causing distortion.

If you click on a corner box, hold the shift key down, and drag outward from the picture you will change width and height proportionally. If the aspect ratio is locked, Word automatically does this without your having to hold down the shift key.

Step 9. Move the image by clicking and dragging. Click once on the image and it will be surrounded by eight boxes; one at each corner, and one in the middle of each line.

Move your cursor over the image and it becomes a pointer with a four headed arrow attached to it. Click anywhere in the picture and drag it to the desired location.


To add a Header and/or a Footer to a Word document, choose VIEW/Header and Footer. A space on the document pops up and the toolbar appears.

Let's take a look at the Header and Footer toolbar:

Type in the necessary information in the box on the document and align the text.
If you need to insert information into the footer area, you can click in the footer area and start typing. However, whenever you are within the header/footer area of a document, the Header/Footer toolbar appears.