Searching by image

No doubt you’ve used Google Image Search: You go to images.google.com and type in a search phrase, such as “Tiananmen Square” and Google serves up matching images. But did you know you can do the reverse: feed an image to Google Image Search and it...

Creating a well-spaced document

Documents consist of words. They also consist of spaces and it is the spaces that make our words readable. Because of that, it’s worth paying attention to how you use spacing in all your documents. There are all sorts of spaces. Spaces around the edges of the document...

Solving the Password Dilemma

How crackable are your passwords? Do you, like hundreds of thousands of others, use ‘password’ or ‘12345678’ as your password? Or do you cunningly resort to using your daughter’s—or mother’s, sister’s, brother’s, father’s, partner’s, pet’s, favorite sports...

Sync, share, backup with Dropbox

Sliced bread…the zipper…Velcro…the mouse wheel. Seemingly simple innovations which make life oh so much easier. Here’s another for that list: Dropbox. Dropbox takes all the pain—and most of the brain—out of sharing files. It lets you synchronize files across all your...

Portable SMTP: Take your email with you

There are all sorts of ways to access your email while on the road. You can set up a web-based account with Hotmail, Yahoo or any of a host of other online services. You can use your ISP’s or company’s web-based email log-in. You can use remote control software to...

Windows 7 vs Windows 8

Windows 8 is not for everyone. Should you upgrade, or should you stick with Windows 7? Here are 10 reasons to stay with 7, 10 reasons to take the leap to 8. Ten reasons to avoid Windows 8 The learning curve. Windows 8 is an entirely new experience. There’s no gentle...

Find anything with Everything

Windows Search has gradually improved with each successive version of the operating system. In Windows 7, search is central to how the file system works and you’ll find search boxes in the Start Menu and every folder window. Although search in Windows 7 is pretty...

Databasics VII: Parameter Queries

Note: I’m working on updating this series of articles. This article is really showing its age. All the examples are for  Microsoft Access 2000/2003, and things have changed a lot since then. While the concepts are still the same and you can learn a lot from...

Databasics VI: Exploring query types

Note: I’m working on updating this series of articles. This article is really showing its age. All the examples are for  Microsoft Access 2000/2003, and things have changed a lot since then. While the concepts are still the same and you can learn a lot from...

Databasics V: Getting information out

The whole point of using a database is to turn data into information. Data are facts which have no inherent meaning; information is data put into context to convey meaning. Think of a customer database containing information such as customer names, addresses and phone...

Which database series should I read?

In the beginning there was a single series of database tutorials on this site. Now there are two. Which one should you read? If you’re looking for a nice, slow approach to learning databases, choose Databasics. It will help you learn the lingo, start with simple...

Databases from scratch III: The Design Process

This third article in the series delves into the database heartland by exploring relational database design. One of the best ways to understand the importance of good database design is to start with an all-in-one, flat-file table design and then toss in some sample...