View Full Version : Computing for beginners

12-05-2006, 09:17 AM
Both my wife and my son have just got their first computers, and neither of them has the first idea hoiw to use them. All they are looking to do is really elementary stuff, e-mails, internet surfing, very basic word processing. I'm looking for a book that will help them do this. I've used the Dummie's guides, but these really tell them more than they need to know, and a single book is what is needed. They both have XP, and Office, plus anti virus and a lot else that they'll never use.

Any suggestions for suitable literature would be much appreciated

12-05-2006, 09:22 AM
The best thing would be for you to sit down next to them and show them.

mark c
12-05-2006, 10:00 AM
Get them to use their computers and the net to learn. Set them off to find something like "computer beginners" or "internet tutorials" or "beginners internet" and they can sleuth atround till they find a site that suits. there are masses of them. That way they'll be learning through their learning proceedure anyway. Then once they've got a bit of familarity tell to digest the FAQs here at Pressf1, an excellent start and abit further too.

Thats's how I did it.

PS I'm sure you don't mean "anti-virus and a lot of other stuff they won't use." They'd better. :D

mark c
12-05-2006, 10:30 AM
And get them to Bookmark/save in Favourites webopedia for all those pesky TLAs.:D

12-05-2006, 10:39 AM

some E.I.T's have free introductory courses for computers, I know of a couple of folks who used these and they havn't looked back.

A place to start when learning, is to play solitaire, most computers have this
installed, sounds a bit silly but by playng, it teaches the use of the mouse, and
also drop and drag.



12-05-2006, 10:43 AM

some E.I.T's have free introductory courses for computers,y
Your local polytech that is.

Or look in your local paper.

12-05-2006, 11:52 AM
Hewlett Packard offer very good free online Learning Centre classes that may be of some help.

A list of courses currently in session is available here (http://h30187.www3.hp.com/all_courses.jsp?poweredUserSegment=it&mcid=em15saleft&jumpid=em_eDM_campaign/US/May06_SMB/none/99999-YYYY-May06HPLearningCenterITversion/Newsletter) though I can't see any there that would be useful to your wife and son at the present.

Have a look at the other courses not currently in session here (http://h30187.www3.hp.com/not_enrollable.jsp?hplcpsession=8394458eab62d32de1 1087eb175c) as there are several that will be suitable in the future.

It is free to join but I think they changed things not long ago so you might have to pass yourself off as a US citizen in order to sign up. ;)

Terry Porritt
12-05-2006, 12:12 PM
Can't resist this: Send For Our free booklet (http://www.redhotjazz.com/Songs/reser/sendforourfreebooklet.ram).......Sorry :)

12-05-2006, 06:21 PM
The 2 books that I used when I was an absolute newbie were The Really, Really Easy Step-by-step Computer Book by Robynn Hofmeyr and Gavin Hoole, and then Start! the no nonsense guide to Windows XP by Wallace Wang. They are both still available at Paper plus.

12-05-2006, 06:23 PM
I see you have OFFICE. Much too powerful and difficult for beginners. Get MSWorks. Especially if you can find an old copy (I have gone back to v4.5 1995 as its heaps better than the later versions. - well it is if you appreciate simplicity, speed, reliability, and the ability to do "some" work in its spreadsheet that OFFICE cannot manage.)
The flat file database is a dream - after 12 years daily work on computers I still cannot get to grips with the OFFICE database. But enjoy designing and getting a MSWORKS database up and running in about 30 seconds.
Old versions can be picked up all over the place.
Its a whole new world when you get into computers. Have fun but keep off FREECELL - it drives me daft - just cannot cure my obsession with it.

Poppa John
13-05-2006, 06:47 PM
The best thing would be for you to sit down next to them and show them.

Somebody...... You should know better than to suggest the above. Does a Husband willingly teach a Wife to drive a car? Fraught with problems.
What about the Manual that you came "Print Off" from XP Home. PJ :2cents:

13-05-2006, 08:29 PM
Agree with Thomas 01 MS works is more than adequate for home users. Also agree
ver 4.5 is the best. Later versions, while having some nice additional features, are so sloooooow!