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You can do IT in later life


You can do IT is a regular feature of aimed at trying to help laterlife visitors make the most of Information Technology on or off the web. 

Jackie Sherman who runs the You can do IT Question & Answer section is an IT trainer and author. Jackie has spent her career in education and specialises in teaching IT to adults. Her courses for adults include such topics as MS Office, the Internet, e-mail and basic web page authoring.  

Jackie has also written several books - you can find more details about these by clicking here. Jackie has also been running a course specifically for over 50s.

Via Jackie aims to particularly help those new to IT and the web to build up knowledge and confidence, so no question is too basic. At the same time she will cover Q&As for the more experienced user. 

So if you would like to ask a question of Jackie, or if you have discovered something which may be of interest to others in making the most of the web, then she would love to hear about that too. Why not email her


September 2009



Q: There are several keys on the keyboard I rarely use, and yet I imagine I could save myself some time if I knew more about them. Can you introduce a few useful shortcuts?



A: Well, here are a few that relate to the ALT key which can be very useful:

1. ALT + F4 (the function key at the top of the keyboard) will close the window and/or program you are using. It is really useful, for example, if you have opened a large number of images and suddenly want to go off and do something else without endlessly clicking the Close button for each one.

2. ALT + Spacebar will offer the shortcut window menu so you can change. from Maximise to Minimise or close the window altogether.

shortcut window menu

3. ALT + Tab will let you switch between active windows, to search for a program or file you were working with earlier. Hold down ALT and keep clicking Tab until you highlight the required file and when you let go it will open on screen.

4. ALT + underlined letter will open a menu, for example ALT + A will open the Table menu and ALT + O will open the Format menu. You can then press the key for an underlined letter on its own to open the relevant dialogue box. For example, with the Format menu open, P will open the Paragraph dialogue box and S the styles box.




Q: How do I stop my email system adding everyone's email address to my list of contacts automatically?

A: There are email settings that you can use to either cancel or add this facility. In Outlook Express, for example, go to Tools – Options and click in the box on the Send tab to add/remove the option to Automatically put people I reply to in my Address Book.


Q: When I click a link in an email to go to the web, the window that opens is really small and I have to maximise it using the Maximise button. Despite closing it at this size, when it opens next time it is small again. Any advice?

A: There are two different things you could try.


1. Right click your browser icon on the desktop and select Properties.
2. On the Shortcut tab, click in the Run box.
3. Select Maximised.
4. Click OK.



If changing settings doesn't work you could try the following trick:

1. Physically drag the size of the window from the top left and bottom right corners until it fills the whole screen. So do this INSTEAD of using the Maximise command.
2. Close the window with the Close button.
3. Re-open the program – the window should now open at its largest size.



View previous editions of YoucandoIT for more useful Questions and Answers

For a wealth of books on the web and IT generally, visit Amazon and under the books section select Computers and Internet.

Don't forget to visit the general laterlife features section called laterlife interest


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