MadMod Computing The MadMod Computing Newsletter

Vol. 2001b

Welcome to the second issue of The MadMod Computing Newsletter.   We hope that you enjoy the features of each issue and learn some computing skills along the way.

First, a reminder to make backups of your important files, and to use Scandisk and Disk Defragmenter -- at least monthly.

Featured in This Issue
1.     Copying and Printing a Video Snapshot
2.     Using Tables Inside of Microsoft Word
3.     The Astronomy Picture of the Day (website)

1.    Copying and Printing a Video Snapshot
At the top of the keyboard is a Print Screen key near the F12 key.  Using it's feature is easy.  What it does is to take a video snapshot of what is currently displayed.  Simply press the key once.  Next, open Microsoft Word and "paste" the video snapshot into a new document.  (Hold down the Ctrl key and press the v key to paste.)  In a moment or so, you'll have a copy of the video screen that you can save and/or print.

2.    Using Tables Inside of Microsoft Word
In Microsoft Word is a "Table" pull-down menu.  Try experimenting with inserting a table into a practice document.  I would suggest that you try a two-column table with four rows.  Imagine four last names in the first column and phone numbers in the second column.  Use the mouse and the tab key to fill the cells.  Next go to the table menu and "Select Table".  Once there select "Sort Text" and pick a column.  You'll find that the other columns will be sorted properly-something that is a problem when using Microsoft Excel unless you select all that data first.

As a final suggestion, try moving the mouse very slowly near your table.  You'll find that the pointer has a variety of roles that affect column boundaries, cells, columns or rows.  Save your document often as your work with tables.  Next is shown a simple example with enhanced borders.  (I used the button in the tool bar.)

  Abbott   938-0001
  Benson   748-0010
  Cabot   438-0100
  Dennison   426-1000

3.    The Astronomy Picture of the Day (website)
You don't have to be an astronomy buff to enjoy the beautiful photos posted daily at  Usually posted below each photo is a complete description along with links to various sites containing more information for those interested in astronomy details.  Once in a while the photo is composed of a sequence of slides playing so as to display time-lapse motion.  In some instances the photos require a pair of red/green glasses so that the image can be seen with 3-D effects.  (Inexpensive glasses can be obtained from vendors posted along with the photo description.  I bought a cheap cardboard pair with colored cellophane lenses that gives satisfactory results.)  An archive of photos is also available at the site and is worth exploring.

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E-mail to the editor: David Mawdsley

Copyright © 2001, The MadMod Computing Newsletter