Tag Archives: Microsoft Office

Tech Sharecase, 12 December 2010

Stanton Biddle, Janey Chao, Arthur Downing, Jin Ma, Bob Makarowski, Rita Ormsby, Ryan Phillips, Kevin Wolf and Stella Varveris

This Tech Sharecase we focused on sharing of our comments, tips, tricks, complaints for using Microsoft Office 2010 products. The following is a list of the tips and tricks we covered:

  • To minimize the ribbon, you can either double-click any tab or click the caret (a.k.a. chevron) in the upper right-hand corner.
  • Pressing the Alt button will display hot keys for tabs or options within tabs.  One can navigate the ribbon with these hot keys and forgo using the mouse.
  • Office users can create sparklines within Excel using their spreadsheet data.
  • Users are able to customize the ribbon to add or subtract new tabs or items within tabs. In order to do this follow: File>Options>Customize Ribbon.
  • Conversion to PDF is standard in Microsoft Office applications under Save As. Users no longer need to purchase the Adobe PDF add-on.
  • In PowerPoint, we explored SmartArt (Under Insert and Illustrations). This is a convenient way to add smart looking graphical displays of information not previously available in previous Office versions.
  • The Quick Access tool bar above the tabs can also be modified to add or subtract different commands such as Print, Save, Open, Spell Check, et cetera–commonly used items.
  • Screenshots of open browser or other application windows can be captured straight from PowerPoint under Insert>Images>Screenshot. Microsoft refers to the screenshots as Screen Clippings.

Also discussed were how Baruch may roll out global settings for Microsoft Office. Some options that may be a possibility follow:

  • Standardize RSS Feeds with campus content
  • Listen to voicemail messages from within Outlook.
  • IM people through Outlook within the Baruch directory and outside public
  • Web conferencing, one-to-many
  • Voice over IP
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Tech Sharecase, 19 November 2010

Stephen Francoeur, Ellen Kaufman, Jim Livornese, Ryan Phillips, Stella Varveris

Facebook Messages
We watched a video from Facebook about its forthcoming Messages service, which aims to integrate email, chat, and text messaging for Facebook users. We discussed how Google seems to be doing similar things with its Gmail service, which lets you chat and make VoIP calls in its interface as well as see text messages and voicemail messages from the Google Voice service. We also discussed whether we’d trust Facebook with all this personal communication.

RockMelt Browser
We looked at the new RockMelt Browser, which integrates tightly with Facebook and Twitter and watched this video explaining the browser’s functionality.

Firesheep is a worrisome new Firefox extension that makes it easy for people to hijack usernames/passwords people use as they login to various websites while on unencrypted wifi networks. What is alarming about this new packet sniffer software is that it is so easy to for the uninitiated to set up and run.

Web Conferencing Software
We talked about ooVoo and Adobe Connect as options for web conferencing. In addition to online learning uses, the software might also be useful for virtual office hours and for students working on group projects.

Interactive Pen Displays
We looked at a couple of companies (Wacom and Promax) that offer monitors that have built in tablets that allow you to write on the screen. These might be useful on instructor’s podiums (podia?)

Next Tech Sharecase

The next get together will be on Friday, December 10. Please come prepared to share any tips, tricks, or questions you have about Microsoft Office 2010. Don’t forget to check out the new BCTC page about Microsoft Office 2010, which offers tutorials, help sheets, and a form to sign up for training sessions.

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Tech Sharecase, 5 November 2010

Frank Donnelly, Stephen Francoeur, Gerry Jiao, Ellen Kaufman, Jim Livornese, Rita Ormsby, Ryan Phillips, Stella Varveris, Michael Waldman, Kevin Wolff

Overview of Browser Wars
Today’s meetup focused on comparing different browsers. Prior to meeting, we sent out a survey to library staff about their browser preferences (you can still take the survey or just view the latest results).

Maxthon Browser
Ryan Phillips showed his favorite features in the Maxthon browser:

  • Features the ability to sync favorites to multiple locations and soon will sync browser settings and history as well
  • Allows customizable speed dial on your start page
  • Has dual rendering to optimize display for old and new web sites
  • Customizes your preferences for searching by mouse, open and closing new tabs, mouse trails et cetera
  • Includes Smart address bar that suggest links and results by viewed sites

One issue that we have to keep in mind when using browsers other than IE or Firefox is that they may not be supported by the college to work in various applications and services we have licenses for.

Opera Browser
Frank Donnelly demonstrated the aspects of the Opera browser that appeal to him:

  • Has built in AVG anti-virus and malware detectors that alert you to pages that may be security risks
  • Since the browser is less popular, it is less likely to be targeted by hackers
  • Speed dial when you open up new tabs
  • Turbo feature can speed up rendering of slow-to-load pages
  • Has a built in HTML validator
  • Has a recycle bin that lets you easily view a list of pages you recently closed in a tab
  • Works across many operating systems

It was noted, though, that not all pages render properly in Opera, including pages on the Census.gov site.

The discussion of viruses and malware prompted a quick discussion of the spam filtering technology we use at Baruch (Proofpoint) and the disparate amounts of daily spam caught on our behalf by the filter (some people get 30 spam messages caught a day, others get hundreds or more)

Chrome Browser
Stephen Francoeur showed his favorite features and extensions in Google Chrome:

  • Nearly as fast as Opera and much faster than Firefox and Internet Explorer (at the moment)
  • Speed dial feature is automatically populated as you surf; items added are the most visited pages; you can customize which items are on the speed dial
  • The Evernote extension lets you clip web pages into your Evernote account. When you search Google, the search results page from Google also includes search results from your Evernote account.
  • The Google Translate extension will recognize that a page is in a foreign language and offer to translate it for you.
  • The Chrome Notepad extension gives you a clipboard on the toolbar where you can save snippets of text; this content will get synchronized across multiple Google Chrome installations that you may have set up on different computers

Firefox Browser
Stephen Francoeur switches between Chrome and Firefox regularly. Firefox’s advantages are:

  • The Zotero add-on for citation management. It was recently announced that Zotero will eventually release a desktop client and extensions so Zotero can be used in Chrome, Safari, and Internet Explorer.
  • Web Developer add-on, which is great for any web design work.

Next Tech Sharecase
Today’s somewhat planned meetup was an experiment. It was agreed that we should try it again, though maybe not every meeting. The next Tech Sharecase will not feature any topics scheduled in advance; the one after that, though, will be a day for all us to share various Microsoft Office tricks.

Microsoft Office 2010
Jim Livornese showed us a bit of the help pages and tutorials that are now available on the BCTC pages to help the Baruch community get up to speed on Microsoft Office 2010.

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Tech Sharecase, 22 July 2010

Janey Chao, Stephen Francoeur, Ellen Kaufman, Jim Livornese, Ryan Phillips, Linda Rath, Mike Waldman, Kevin wolff

We discussed Steven Bell’s study of LibGuides (pdf), which he presented at 16th Annual Reference Research Forum at the ALA Annual Meeting this year. Bell asked whether LibGuides help students do better research? The results of the student were inconclusive.

Gartner Research
On the CUNY Portal, we have limited subscription to Gartner Research (we do have access to the magic quadrant charts).

IT Needs for the Library
Jim Livornese asked us to talk about what IT needs the library has. Suggestions we discussed included:
  • better, faster, more stable PCs at the ref desk (the best we can offer) that have dual monitors (one angled for the patron, another for the librarian) and speakers (so we can play videos to patrons as needed)
  • digital signage
  • longer period for guest logins (2 days? 3 days? 1 week?)
  • better sense of who to contact in BCTC for what
  • software that makes image on instructor’s classroom PC display on the student PCs
  • multiple projection screens in the classrooms (and more whiteboards)

BCTC Projects
Jim Livornese ran through a list of projects that BCTC will be looking into or developing further: podcast producers, Boxee, iTunes U, media development, etc.

We watched the BYU video that was just released and parodies a recent ad campaign from Old Spice. Here is the BYU library video:

[kml_flashembed movie=”http://www.youtube.com/v/2ArIj236UHs” width=”425″ height=”350″ wmode=”transparent” /]

Here is the original Old Spice commercial:
[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/uLTIowBF0kE" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

It was noted that Yale and Middlebury have similarly well-produced videos for aimed at attracting applicants.

RSS Reader in Microsoft Office 2010
The new version of Outlook in Microsoft Office, which we are all getting in our desk PCs soon, has a RSS reader built in.
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Tech Sharecase, 18 June 2010

Saad Abulhab, Joanna Cruz, Arthur Downing, Stephen Francoeur, Harold Gee, Joseph Hartnett, Ellen Kaufman, Wilcina Longdon, Jin Ma, Louisa Moy, Christina Muniz, Peter Philips, Ryan Phillips, Ester Ramos, Michael Waldman

Baruch iPhone App
We watched a screencast from the developer of the forthcoming iPhone app that is being designed for the Office of Student Development. There are placeholders in certain sections where library services and resources can be added. This app is being designed primarily as a student recruitment tool.

Microsoft Office 2010
If you are a faculty member, you can go to the CUNY Mall within the CUNY Portal and download for free the latest version of Microsoft Office, which was just released this week. The license is for home use only and not for work PCs. It is very possible that this fall, though, our work computers will get upgraded from Office 2003 to Office 2010. The 2010 version of Outlook (and the earlier 2007 version) has a built-in RSS reader, which will work once we get our Exchange server here on campus upgraded this summer.

Pew Report on Use of Social Media and Mobile Devices Among Teens
We took a quick look at the recently released report from the Pew Internet and America Life Project that about how teens use mobile devices and social media.

Online Education
This fall, the statistics department will use online course content developed by Carnegie Mellon’s Open Learning Initiative for its intro statistics course. We also discussed briefly the large library of video tutorials created by Salman Khan and published on YouTube. Over 1400 videos are available; most of the videos are about science, math, finance, economics. Here is a sample video on balance sheets:

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