32-bit “newbie safety” instructions:
(1) Don’t open attachments that you didn’t ask for, even if you think you
know who’s sending them.
(2) Make sure your software and OS are up-to-date. If you don’t have a
broadband connection, take the machine somewhere that does.
(3) If something asks to install itself on your computer, just say no. Call
your local geek and ask how to proceed.
(4) You cannot initiate World War III by pressing the wrong key.
(5) Sign up for a computer class. It’s a proven fact that family members
suck at teaching the basics.
(6) Do not give out credit card information to anybody through e-mail or an
instant messenger, no matter how official it sounds. Again, call your geek
(7) If you want to find something online, go to Google.com.
(8) Do not eat or drink near your computer system unless your hardware is
orange juice compatible.
(9) CTRL+Z will usually undo the last thing you did, no matter where you
are or what you’re doing.
(10) Do not use the CAPS LOCK key; that is for expert users only.
(11) If something doesn’t want to go into a port, don’t force it; chances
are, it’s not supposed to go in there. At least, not the way you think it
(12) Those are floppy disks. Yes, I realize their case is hard, but the hard
drive is actually inside that case.
(13) Yes, that’s the case. The CPU is sitting inside of it on the
motherboard - which is the stage upon which all of your computer components
(14) Memory is not the same thing as a hard drive; memory is also known as
RAM, which is where programs and open documents are loaded. The hard drive
is where your files sit silently, waiting for you to put them into memory.
(15) A screen saver is not the same thing as a desktop wallpaper; screen
savers are animated, whereas a wallpaper is the picture that sits behind
(16) There’s more than one way to do complete a task - this isn’t math
(17) Don’t get mad at me when something doesn’t work; don’t get mad at the
computer when something doesn’t work; don’t get mad at yourself when
something doesn’t work.
(18) Be inquisitive, but understand that certain answers may not exist - no
matter how many ways you try to ask the same question.
(19) You’re probably not going to get hacked; ask your geek how to best
protect yourself if you’re worried.
(20) Forwarding joke mails is not funny.
(21) The Internet doesn’t always move as fast as you’d like it to go; you’re
not the only person online right now
(22) Don’t respond to special offers you didn’t ask for through e-mail.
(23) Try right-clicking on your icons to see what you can do with each one.
(24) Keep all of your saved files, word processing documents, spreadsheets,
cards, etc. in the “My Documents” folder. Whenever a program asks you to
save something somewhere, save it in there.
(25) There’s more on your computer than “the Internet” and Solitaire.
(26) You don’t need Photoshop to edit your digital photos.
(27) Don’t send videos through e-mail.
(28) The computer only does what you tell it to do; there are exceptions to
this rule, but if you keep running into the same walls, you’re probably
doing something wrong. That’s okay, even geeks make mistakes.
(29) You usually can’t return opened software; learn how to download files
to try them before you buy them.
(30) You won’t need to upgrade everything tomorrow; this system will not be
obsolete until it can’t do something you need it to do.
(31) Have fun! If you take this activity too seriously, you won’t want to
play with the computer too often.
(32) Subscribe to Lockergnome! It may not make much sense at first, but
you’ll start catching on in a few weeks. I hope.