I want to learn Visual C. I have no programming knowledge, though. What should I do to get started?
It might be easier to simply pound your head with a large mallet. Your headache will be just as large, and there's a faster learning curve. C is mind-bendingly hard for a beginner to pick up.
You could try some community college courses or "Dummies" books, but I'd start with simpler languages so you can learn basic programming concepts without the migraines.
Try Visual BASIC, then Pascal or Delphi or maybe some Java or Linux. Once you start thinking like a programmer, it's much easier to tackle C.
The Toshiba repair guys say they do not have the equipment to retrieve the data from my laptop's crashed hard drive. I have a novel on this thing! And before you reprimand me: Yes, I will forever back up, back up, back up! Lesson learned, but can I get my data?
In some cases, data recovery is possible, but you'd better call in the pros and get your checkbook ready. Start with Ontrack Data International (www.ontrack.com/datarecovery/). You can mail the drive or attempt the recovery yourself, using their software. They even have a free download that will check for recoverable files.
I have Microsoft Works for Windows. Some e-mail recipients cannot open attachments I send to them. How would I overcome the problem?
Dont assume people have programs that can read Works' goofy file format. Save your stuff as "Text Only." You'll lose all your pretty formatting, but at least recipients will be able to read your letters.
I was approached by a small-business owner to do maintenance on three computers. I defragged his hard drives, used ScanDisk, upgraded the anti-virus files, installed new software and connected a new printer. This took three hours. I offered to teach him to do the work. He said he doesn't have the time. He gave me a check for $120. I would like to know if this was a fair price.
Personally, I would have no qualms about cashing that check. I don't have a problem with taking candy from small, defenseless children, either.
Maybe he's just afraid of computer stuff. Let's not tell him he can use the Windows Task Scheduler to do disk scanning and defragmentation automatically in the middle of the night. Or that many new anti-virus programs can automatically update themselves.
Or that Windows ME will take care of crucial updates to the operating system automatically. Some people would just rather not know that such things are possible, and it's our job as knowledgeable computer users to crassly exploit that for our own gain. Need a partner?
I have copied some pictures onto floppy disks, but I haven't figured out how to play them back.
By default, Windows uses Internet Explorer (the browser) to call up the most popular graphics formats.
Double-clicking on the picture files in Windows Explorer (the file management program) will launch them.
However, I'd recommend a dedicated viewer like ACDSee (www.acdsystems.com), because it requires far less mental agility to use.
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