Issue #75 January 11, 2005

1. PPT – Navigating with the keyboard

Since the popularity of Windows grew so many years ago, the reliance on the mouse to navigate and complete tasks in a program has grown. New computer users may not even be aware that before the advent of Windows, everything was done using key combinations on the keyboard. In many cases, the keyboard can still be used to perform many functions, and it may be quicker to do it with the keyboard than reaching for the mouse. Here are some ways to navigate within PowerPoint using the keyboard. Ctrl+Enter: The Ctrl+Enter key combination (hold down the Control key and press the Enter key) will allow you to jump to the next text box on a slide. This can be extremely useful when entering the text for slides. On a new slide, press Ctrl+Enter to move to the first text box, usually the title. Type in the title, press Ctrl+Enter again to jump to the bullet point text box, type in your points and you are done entering the slide text without touching the mouse at all. Then, by pressing the Ctrl+Enter key combination at the end of the last text box, you will create a new slide and can continue on. This key combination can speed your initial slide text entry. Menu navigation: To navigate and select a menu item, press the Alt key to move the selection cursor up to the menu words across the top of the screen (you will see the first menu word, usually File, highlighted). Use your arrow keys on the keyboard to then move across or up and down the menus to find the menu item you need. Press Enter to select that menu item. Press Esc to exit without selecting a menu item (you may have to press Esc more than once depending on how deep in a menu you are). Dialog box navigation: Within a dialog box, the tab key will move the cursor between the sections of the tab box (you will see the highlighted area move). The arrow keys will move you among the selections within a dialog box area and the Enter key will select that item. In drop down fields, Alt+Down Arrow will drop down the selections for you to choose from. Use the down and up arrows to find the item and the Enter key to select it. Task pane navigation: In a task pane (usually shown on the right side of the screen), use the arrow keys to move between selections and the Enter key to select an item. Sometimes the task pane has sections and the tab key will move between the sections. Use these key combinations to speed up your work in PowerPoint.

2. Fresh Start for the New Year

It is our first issue of the year and I want all of you to start the year off right. I read a great article recently on some things to do at the start of the year to maintain your PC and keep it in top working order. Some of the items were things like cleaning up your hard drive of useless files, making sure your operating system and virus checkers are up to date, reorganizing your files into directories (I did that last week), and backing everything up (did that last week too). The article is written by respected computer writer Fred Langa (I have recommended his newsletter in the past) and is written as an end of the year set of tasks. But for those of us who were too busy with the holidays (as I was), it serves as a good list for the start of the new year. Here is a link to the article: I hope you find a few ideas to improve your computing in 2005. –

3. Useful Resource – New PC advice

Did you get a new computer for Christmas or know someone who did? If so, you will want to print out this article from PC Magazine on what to do with that new PC. They cover all the basics of getting it up and running smoothly and safely. A number of steps should be done before connecting that new PC to the Internet, since all sorts of nasty files are lurking waiting for a new computer that has yet to be secured. If you know someone who just got a new PC, forward this newsletter to them with a note to look at this article. Here is the link:,1759,1743681,00.asp