Managing Your Digital Content - Novel Technology
"E-books and Technology Made Simple" “Holiday Roundup: I got a new _____________, now what do I do? Managing Your Digital Content”
Happy New Year! So it is now 2013 and you are the proud new owner of a tablet, smartphone or laptop just waiting for you to fill it with new and exciting apps and software. Whether your new toy is for business or entertainment, there is bound to be an app for that!
Last month I touched upon a number of must have apps and software to install on your new devices. This month I would like to focus more on the Microsoft Windows 8 operating system. A number of you are probably wondering whether to upgrade or not to upgrade. While Windows 8 offers a multitude of new and innovative ways in computing it may not be a good fit for all.
If your laptop/desktop was purchased after 10/26/12 the chances are great that your system is running Windows 8. Getting the most out of Microsoft’s new operating system is paramount to achieving productivity excellence.
If your new laptop/desktop was purchased before 10/26/12, the chances are you are more likely to be running a Windows 7 operating system and have the opportunity to purchase Windows 8 at a discounted cost. So should you upgrade to the latest and greatest Windows OS? Before upgrading you should run the Windows 8 upgrade assistant to verify that all software installed on your device is compatible with Windows 8. The assistant will notify you of any software that is not compatible and instruct you on what to do next. I have found that most software that is not compatible are the manufactures 3rd party software ie, Asus Webstorage. In these instances, my suggestion is to visit the manufacture/vendor site and look for any software updates for windows 8. I am sure there a number of users that will find the new interface to cumbersome, gaudy and downright confusing. Give Windows 8 a chance. On a touch screen device the operating system is a tablet with a lot of power. As a traditional mouse or track pad driven device, learning the simple mouse gestures is a snap.
So now that you have established that you can safely upgrade to windows 8, just what are the benefits of doing so. Well besides for a totally redesigned or as Microsoft likes to say a “Reimagined” look, Windows 8 brings the feel of Apple computing to the Windows user. The addition of the “Live Tiles” feature brings real-time news, headlines and social media streams straight to your desktop; a feature that can save a user precious time. Windows 8 even has a handy feature that lets you share info to any social media with just a click of the “Share Charm”. Being productive is great, but sometimes a little downtime can be just as important. The integration of Xbox Live gaming entertainment to the Microsoft Online Store adds the ultimate gaming experience for existing and future Xbox users.
Another great new feature that Windows 8 introduces is the ability to pin frequently visited websites, documents and files to the start screen. For example I always check out what is happening in the world of Nascar, so one of the websites that I would pin to my start would be www.nascar.com. The start screen is customizable; group your tiles in any order, create as many groups and you want. You control the look and feel of your start screen. For those not ready to embrace Windows 8 full time or have a number of Windows 7 or Windows Xp attachments, there is a tile for the traditional desktop available. This is where all of your productivity software will execute from. While the desktop tile displays the traditional Windows 7 user interface, there are some features that no longer exist in Windows 8. Another innovative feature that I really like is the ability to search for an item by app, setting or file type. Each category displays a list of all items to be searched. The ability to search for an item at a glance based on a search parameter has the potential to cut down on frustrating search results.
For those of you who have not had opportunity to try out Windows 8, I suggest you head down to your local store and take a test drive. While the interface is different, the simplicity of multi-tasking makes up for the slight learning curve.
Next Month’s Article of Novel Technology "E-books and Technology Made Simple" “Finding Quality book review resources and book recommendations”
Columnist Victoria Mays: Victoria currently owns a classic nook wifi-3G, an iPod Touch 4th Gen and an iPad wifi-3G. You would probably ask why so many, the nook is more for indoor reading, while the iPod touch is that on the go reading in line at the bank and waiting for a movie to start device. The iPad is used for long term review reading and annotating. She still purchases many of her favorite authors in print, but her library has grown exponentially since she has embraced eBook technology.