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Introduction: Keeping Up with the Jetson... > Introduction: Keeping Up with the Je... - Pg. xiii

Introduction: Keeping Up with the Jetsons xiii How Do You Use This Book? You don't have to read this book from cover to cover (although you might miss some savvy tidbits if you skip around). If you're going computer shopping, start with Chapter 1, "Savvy Consumer Guide to Buying a Computer." If you want a quick lesson on using Windows, skip to Chapter 5, "Windows Survival Guide." If you're already comfortable with the basics, go to Chapter 6, "Windows Tips, Tricks, and Traps," or Chapter 27, "Do-It-Yourself Computer Tune-Ups," to learn some slick, ad- vanced moves. Each chapter is a selfcontained unit that includes the information you need to survive one aspect of the computer world. To provide some structure for this hodgepodge of computer skills and techniques, I divided the book into the following six parts: · Part 1, "Basic Training," deals with the bare minimum: shopping for a computer, setting it up, turning it on, clicking, typing, working with disks and files, and finding your way around in Win- dows. · Part 2, "Get with the Program," focuses on applications (the programs you use to perform tasks, such as writing letters and creating graphs). Here you learn how to install and run programs, enter commands, save and open document files, and print your documents. · Part 3, "Get Organized! (Managing Disks, Folders, and Files)," teaches you everything you need to know about disks, directories (folders), and files. Here you learn how to prepare disks for storing data, copy and delete files, organize files with directories, and find misplaced files. · Part 4, "Going Global with Modems, Online Services, and the Internet," launches you into the world of telecommunications. In this part, find out how to select and install a modem, connect to an online service, surf the Internet, send and receive e-mail, and much more. · Part 5, "Guerrilla Computing," shows you how to survive in the real world. In these chapters, you learn how to tune up your computer to enhance its performance, hit the road with a notebook computer, and enhance your life with some cool computer gadgets and gizmos. · Part 6, "Houston, We've Got a Problem," shows you how to prevent disasters and recover from the catastrophes you cannot avoid. Learn preventive maintenance, how to back up the files on your hard disk, how to fix common computer problems, and how to find professional help for the problems you can't fix yourself. How We Do Things in This Part of the Country I used several conventions in this book to make the book easier to use. For example, when you need to type something, here's how it will appear: type this Just type what it says. It's as simple as that. Likewise, if I tell you to select or click a command, the command appears bold. This enables you to quickly scan a series of steps for the essential commands without having to read all the text. If you want to understand more about the command you're typing, you can find some background information in boxes. Of course, you can skip over the information I put in the boxes to avoid the gory details, but then you might miss some important tidbits. These boxes are distinguished by special icons that appear next to them: