December APCUG Wednesday Workshops

DECEMBER WEDNESDAY WORKSHOPS 9am pacific time

December 1
Electronic Holiday Greeting Cards

Not Your Parent’s PowerPoint

December 8
Make Your Own 2022 Photo Calendar at Home

December 15
Learning Linux #11 – Software Installations and Removals

Have you experienced your own problems in the “supply chain dilemma” caused by the current crisis? At this time of year, not only are some things hard to find, but many of us don’t want to go “out there in all of that” and spend a lot of time searching for them. APCUG has come to your rescue with our first two December Wednesday Workshops. Rather than trying to “find” things like holiday cards or just the right calendar to give or use, you can create/design/make them yourself with a bit of help. Check out our lineup of DIY (Do It Yourself) projects.

December 1

Register here – https://forms.gle/iBC1obhWN1D3QqLG6

Electronic Holiday Greeting Cards
Bob Bowser, Director, The Senior Computer User Group of Greater Kansas City

Bob will show us several options for sending holiday greetings to our friends and family. He will take us on a visit to several websites varying from free electronic cards to membership-based electronic cards and options to purchase physical cards from home with ways to distribute them and/or get them sent to your home for you to mail.

Not Your Parent’s PowerPoint
Marcia Berkey, Class Instructor, Sarasota Technology Users Group

PowerPoint is more than just presentation software. This presentation will demonstrate many unusual uses for PowerPoint, from documenting your memories to creating greeting cards for the holidays. You will learn how to create a Photo Album for life events, not to be confused with Photo Books from other vendors. However, there is a cool trick that you can use in PowerPoint to make your Photo Books better. You will also learn how to narrate your slideshows, add music to them, and how to export your PowerPoint as an .mp4 video. You can share your creations through your favorite social media sites. Have fun with Marcia learning more about PowerPoint.

December 8

Register Here – https://forms.gle/zzcjN43MQKkc5JW9A

Make Your Own 2022 Photo Calendar at Home
John Krout, Presenter & Newsletter Contributor, Potomac Area Technology And Computer society

We are all awash in digital photos, not only our own but those of our relatives and friends. So why not make a calendar to show off the best ones? All you need is PowerPoint or LibreOffice Impress and a color printer. Learn how you can download and customize the calendar table files (containing 12 calendar months and white space for photos) by adding your photos and calendar entries such as birthdays, anniversaries, and so forth. This presentation also includes information on how John prints and binds his calendar copies at home and ways you might work with commercial printing companies to do that. Note: As of April 2021, the 2022 calendar files are posted online for free downloading.

December 15

Register Here – https://forms.gle/YCkUVaocK52CtebK9

Learning Linux #11 – Software Installations and Removals
There have been numerous questions about software asked at previous Linux Workshops, where do you get the software, how do you install software, and how do you remove the software. At today’s workshop, we are going to focus on those very topics. There are several places you can get the software, and we’ll cover them (starting with the distro’s software center and going out to the Internet). And there are many ways to install the software, and we’ll cover them (starting with the distro’s package manager, the newest container packages, the command line, and even compiling them yourself). Finally, we’ll discuss reversing the process (uninstalling) based on the way you installed it. You can choose precisely how technical you want to get in this whole software process (including being safe).

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Silver Threads reaches 65 years of age

Here is a link to the Times Colonist insert that celebrates 65 years of Silver Threads

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9am November 10 & 17 APCUG Zoom Wednesday Workshops Q&A

November 10 at 9 am PT :   Windows
November 17 at 9 am PT  :   Linux

11/10 – Windows Q&A
Register Here https://forms.gle/isnPzhHungTrPMvXA
Registration closes at 8:30 PT on November 9.

11/17 – Linux Q&A
Register Here https://forms.gle/6BcuCqYLZNov5YvB8  
Registration closes at 8:30 PT on November 16.

Do you have burning questions you need answered about your computer? Are you having trouble finding those answers locally? Do you want to know whether others have the same questions or maybe someone else has the answer to your questions? How about the possibility that you have answers to someone else’s questions they are trying to find? Or do you like to know what other people are asking and what answers are out there? If so, you want to join our APCUG November Wednesday Workshops where we will “Ask Away” in an Open Q&A and spend time letting people ask questions and have other people answer those questions.

We’ll have two different Workshops. On November 10, we will focus on any and all questions about the Windows operating system. And then, on November 17, we will focus on any and all questions about the Linux operating system. We’ll have a team available each week to start the ball rolling with answers, and we will open it up to anyone in the audience that might have the answer if they don’t.

Please register for both if you are interested in both operating systems. And if you have a burning question you want to get to the top of the list, put that question on the Workshop registration form, and we’ll address those questions first. Then, after all those questions have been answered or tabled for further research, we will open the floor for additional questions and answers.

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APCUG’s November 6, 2021 Virtual Technology Conference (VTC) and Annual Meeting

Welcome to APCUG’s November 6, 2021
Virtual Technology Conference (VTC) and Annual Meeting
Four Association of PC User Group sessions.  

Click here to register– https://forms.gle/mbfN1DsT23hDsdkNA

Registration CLOSES at 11:30 pm ET on Friday, November 5 

More information and bios: https://www.apcug2.org 

Continue reading

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Buy and sell used cell phones to other club members

Club members with smartphone service contracts are often offered new phones by their cell phone service providers when their 2 year contract finishes, often at no extra cost. They sometimes retire their old cell phone to a drawer, sometimes to a stack of old phones.   (We are talking about smartphones here, not very old clamshell cell phones. )  These smart phones should be worth no more than $75. (The markup by commercial resellers on these old smartphones seems exorbitant.)

In the mean time we have members without smartphones who need older low cost cell phones for emergency phone calls and for two factor authentication of a couple of important accounts, e.g. their email account and their password manager account.

The computer club can help bring these two parties together.  We can wipe the old phone of any personal data,  and help set it up with a phone number and authenticator, ready for use.  The computer club would not buy or sell the phone, but help connect these parties, and offer technical support.  The club offers no warranty.

If you want to be on either side of this trade, please give George Bowden a call at 250-893-7423.

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Three views of backups

Aww, someone is shredding documents I’ve stored in the cloud !!

I got some feedback to my slide presentation Backup the Easy Way

George B:
Backups have changed, because our device operating systems and apps are now so integrated with cloud storage.  Today I restore from the cloud. 

Consider the Google universe of devices, accounts and where data is stored.  If my Chromebook or Android device becomes inoperable, or  I replace it, I do a power wash, then I log in to my Wi-Fi, and then I log into my google account, and voila, all is restored except what was in the downloads folder.  That leaves three backups for me to do:

  1. the factory Chromebook image onto an SD card, just once when I buy my Chromebook
  2. a takeout of my google universe in case my google account gets hacked or shut down for any reason,
  3. and my downloads folder (which should be pretty much empty of anything vital, since chromeOS will delete stuff anyway if it becomes full.

Nowadays we need to backup our access to the internet, not the device.  This mainly means backing up usernames, passwords, and account logins.  Keep those in a  password manager, be it in the browser synced across devices, or in the cloud like Lastpass.

Every device fails, so you want to get your documents off any single point of failure that can lose your data.  Get your photos off your camera and off your phone into the cloud ASAP.  SD memory cards fail, thumb drives fail, external drives fail, SSD drives fail.   If my network fails, I can go to another access point. Google, Apple and Microsoft are the experts at redundancy. 

On an Apple device, your Apple id is your key to reloading your Apple universe. 

Windows and Linux are the holdouts.  Windows has no phone in its universe, and the extensions to Edge browser are a bit limited, though they have Office and Outlook as extensions to the browser. With that, they have 99% of user needs fulfilled in the browser.  So run apps that are browser extensions that follow you across synchronized devices.   And play Xbox games in your browser.

Yes, you can be old-school and do system backups,  and install your apps as .exe’s . And I do have a Windows box that would be a pain to restore from a new installation of windows, so I make a system backup of that.   But it is a hold-over. My point is to have some server farm do backups for me.  I don’t download emails to windows mail, don’t save my office documents to my computer’s Documents folder and do use a password manager, like Lastpass.   

Ed:
My big fear is not that Google loses my photos and doc’s, but that *I* make a mistake and delete something by mistake.  This is particularly true of synchronized folders, where a configuration error could wipe out data. Losing family photos would be a tragedy, so extra redundancy gives me piece of mind. 

Michael:
I’m a bit of an old school person. With a large number of photos and some videos, moving to the cloud would mean spending money (I’m a bit cheap in that respect). I also have a hard time trusting corporate entities with my personal documents.

My PC has mirrored drives for photos (my most important files), a NAS for another copy plus backing up my other documents (taxes, important passwords, etc), and finally DVD’s of my photos reside at my parents place in Sidney. I don’t use a password manager, though I did register for nordpass. I do, however, have a secure USB drive in case of emergency.

Sure, it’s a bit more complex than saving to the cloud, but I’m more comfortable with this set up at this time.

 

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October Wednesday Workshops at 9 am PT

October 13: Complete Robocall Defense, John Krout
October 20: Learning Linux with Orv Beach and John Kennedy
October 27 :Windows 11 Presentation & Demo, Tom Burt

10/13 – Complete Robocall Defense, John Krout, Presenter & Newsletter Contributor, Potomac Area Technology and Computer Society
Register Here https://forms.gle/ppnY9ooVVL3hFtqD9
Registration closes at 8:30 pm on October 12.This presentation will show you:
  • How to prevent your smartphone from ringing when someone outside of your Contacts list calls.
  • How to create and install a custom voicemail greeting that includes the Special Information Tones (SIT) to convince robocaller systems that your number is not in service.
  • How to use the free Audacity app to create a custom voicemail greeting, including the SIT recording posted online by the presenter.
  • How a free app for Android enables the installation of a custom voicemail greeting via Wi-Fi.
  • Learn how simple cables allow iPhone users to install a custom voicemail greeting.

In 2019, John’s smartphone received about 25 robocalls per week and recorded nearly ten robocall voicemails per week. He applied deterrence techniques to his phone in mid-2020. Using the custom voicemail greeting technique, as of April 2021, the presenter’s smartphone now receives an average of 2 robocalls per week and no robocall voicemails.


10/20 – Learning Linux with Orv Beach and John Kennedy, Linux Evangelists
Register Here    https://forms.gle/FGgzQNDLiHpgEpCF9
Registration closes at 8:30 pm on October 19.

Join us this month as Orv will start things off by reminding us “Why Linux is So Secure.” He’ll follow that review presentation with information about vi/vim, nano, ne, and tilde? Say what? He’ll tell us what they are, why we would use them, and how to use them.

Then John will tell us about another feature of Linux in a presentation entitled “User Groups in Linux: Another Layer of Protection and Security.”  Following that, he will be sharing with us “Workspaces and Virtual Desktops.” What are they and the benefits of using them? And how do you set them up and use them efficiently?

And maybe, if there’s time, a few keyboard shortcuts to head you down the road to becoming a “power user” (this is for beginners as well as experienced users). We’ll also look at how you can create custom keyboard shortcuts that add to what’s available in your Linux distro. Finally, of course, we’ll have time for Q&A and some lively conversation.


10/27 – Windows 11 presentation & demo with Tom Burt, Vice President, Sun City Summerlin Computer Club, Nevada 
Register Here   https://forms.gle/YGn4qCfGaTXg67eK9
Registration closes at 8:30 pm on October 26.

Tom will give us a tour of Windows 11 with what’s new, what’s changed, and more. If your computer is Win 11 ready, you have a notice in Settings>Update & Security letting you know if your computer is ready for the download, mine is but….

We will need to decide if we want to upgrade or keep Windows 10 for a while longer, try Linux, or even WindowsFX, or there might be a Chromebook in our future.

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Presentation Wed. Oct 5th 9:30am: Is Cyber Security Really Important?

Norbert “Bob” Gostischa

Norbert “Bob” Gostischa

Paying attention to Cyber Security is more important today than it has ever been. COVID-19 has exposed many more vulnerabilities than in prior years. More of us are now working from home, many children are learning from home, and many of us have added more IoT devices to make our lives easier. These devices present their own dangers which need to be addressed. 

This presentation points out the dangers and offers suggestions that will aid in keeping you secure. Using the right programs and apps can help keep you safe and secure as well as reduce your privacy exposure. Using free programs and apps whenever possible to accomplish this goal is an added bonus and this presentation includes information on many recommended free programs. Join presenter Bob Gostischa as he guides you towards secure Cyber Security practices. 

About the Presenter:

Norbert “Bob” Gostischa, after a successful career in banking, enjoys his retirement as an enthusiastic IT security expert, most notably for Avast; the creator of Avast Antivirus software.  The Avast website has a discussion and help forum where Bob has been helping with security-related and general computer issues since 2004. He has contributed over 44,000 forum interactions.

Avast Antivirus is currently the most used antivirus software in the world. 

Avast has been making security software for over 30 years and has more than 435 million users worldwide.     You can learn a little more about Bob’s presentations in his Blog

 

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September Wednesday Workshops.

September 22
Encryption Software & Safety for Seniors
These workshops start at 10am PT, 
Click here to Register  https://forms.gle/NHSTLqCSuJhd7Xsh6
Registration closes on 9/21/21 at 8:30 ET

Encryption Software, Mark Schulman. Losing a laptop or flash drive might mean you’re out some money, but it doesn’t have to mean that your private data leaks out into the world. Learn how to use encryption software to protect your private data on a PC, laptop, external hard drive, or USB flash drive.

Safety for Seniors, Lieutenant Kim Lopez, Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office, Oklahoma. This presentation is for senior adults who may not be able to protect themselves, yet it is applicable for all ages as violent crime occurs every 24.6 seconds. Attendees will learn why they should have a plan, what plan they should have and the tools to carry out that plan; how to avoid becoming a financial victim; the most common human response to violent crime; and it will answer questions like: which purse to carry, which purse NOT TO EVER CARRY, how men should carry wallets and why parking lots are so dangerous. Participants will leave knowing which method is the safest and why you should always get a shopping cart and never push it through the checkout line!

September 29

VirtualBox and Custom Linux Installation
9am PT

Click here to Register  https://forms.gle/gkkZmYWsKK9RnKSf7
Registration closes at 9/28/21 at 8:30 pm ET

VirtualBox and a Custom Linux Installation with John Kennedy. At past Learning Linux workshops, we talked about using VirtualBox to test out Linux.  But VirtualBox can also have other uses. We will talk about getting, installing (on both Windows – since most new users will be using Windows to test Linux, and Linux), and then using VirtualBox to create a “virtual machine” (actual operating systems that aren’t really there).

Then we will use VirtualBox to do a custom install of Linux Mint-MATE (John’s choice). A good while back we did a standard install and let the installation program handle everything.  This time we’ll show you what options you have when you do a Linux install customized for what you want to be able to do.

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APCUG 2021 contests Sept 6th to 30th.

APCUG is pleased to announce its 2021 Contest categories: eBulletin, Digital Photography, Newsletter, and Website. The winners will be announced at the Annual Meeting following the November 6 Virtual Technology Conference.
**Contests are only open to APCUG-member groups**

 

For further info, see https://mailchi.mp/e383601609bd/apcug-last-minute-reminder-winter-2021-vtc-13424467?e=74bef65f8f

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