Just a few of the thousands of bits of information that could help you every day.

Almost all programs allow you one "oops" -- the ability to undo your last action; some give you many. See Undo shortcut below.

Did a toolbar (or all of them) disappear? Toolbars can be turned on and off. Some programs have views that hide toolbars. See Internet Explorer shortcut below.

Get in the habit of saving regularly when you're happy with the changes you've made.

If you have a laptop, you have not been cheated out of keys.  To save space, some commands require that you hold down the Function or FN key.



Some computer terms really suggest things that aren't true.


This IS NOT the "ANY" key.


There is NO any key.  If you see an instruction to hit any key, tap a key -- it doesn't matter which one.

The "Print Screen" key on your keyboard does not print the screen.  It copies what is on the screen so you can paste it into some other program.

Bigscreen Lies


Like TV sets, computer monitors are measured diagonally. Manufacturers measure the plastic frame around the screen, adding a couple of inches to the actual screen size. 17" screen = a little less than 15". Look for the "viewable area" on print ads (fine print).


Kilobyte, Megabyte, and Gigabyte Lies

These are metric, (decimal names - powers of 10), but Computer hardware is measured in powers of 2 (binary). A kilobyte is not really 1000 bytes, but 1024 bytes. The thousand, million and billion are a shorthand for the real numbers. A megabyte is a kilobyte squared, or 1,048,576. a gigabyte is a kilobyte cubed, which is 1,073,741,824. No, you don't get the extras. you normally get an approximate, but lower, number than that stated.

Many shortcuts are almost universal. Try them on any program and they are likely to work.  The same shortcuts often have just slightly different (Cmd key instead of Control) Mac versions. Here are just a few you may find helpful.

Shortcut Use in What it does
CTRL + roll scroll wheel on mouse Windows Zoom in and out of documents quickly; forward bigger, back smaller
Esc Many Programs

Close drop down, close context menu, close preview, stop download, Cancel entry

Ctrl + A Most programs Select all contents of the page
Ctrl + S Most programs Save
Ctrl + B Most programs Bold selection.
Ctrl + C Most programs Copy selected text.
Ctrl + X Most programs Cut selected text.
Ctrl + P Most programs Open the print window.
Ctrl + F

Most programs

Access the Find dialog box
Ctrl + V Most programs Paste
Ctrl + Z Most programs Undo last action.
Ctrl + Y Most programs Redo the last action performed.
Ctrl + Home Most programs Moves the cursor to t he beginning of the document.
Ctrl + End Many programs Moves the cursor to the end of the document.
PAGE DOWN Many programs Moves one screen down

Many programs Moves one screen up
Shift F10 Many programs context menu like right click
F7 Office Access spelling command
Shift + F3 Word, PowerPoint Change the case of letters
Shift + F7

Word Activate the thesaurus.
Alt + Shift + D Word Insert the current date.
Shift before File menu command Word, Excel Discloses Close All button
CTRL Shift $ Excel Format selected cells as currency
CTRL ; Excel, Access Insert the current date.
F11 key Internet
Explorer, Firefox
Toggles full screen view on and off
F5 Internet Explorer, Firefox, Windows Refresh contents
Backspace Internet Explorer, Firefox Previous page
Ctrl + d Internet Explorer, Firefox Add to favorites
CTRL + Enter

Internet Explorer and Firefox

Completes web address with www and dot com
ALT F4 Windows Close the current program
ALT TAB Windows Switch between open applications
CTRL + ALT + DELETE Windows Reboot computer and/or open Windows task manager.
Cmd ~ Mac Switch between windows
Cmd click Mac Context (shortcut) menu


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