No Ifs, Ands or Botts
I was going to call this another "Tech Tip," but then I thought some people would skip past it, and this is one to check out and save what it offers for future reference.
I've written here from time to time about my friend Ed Bott. Ed writes a wonderful tech column, efficiently-named, "The Ed Bott Report," here on ZDNet which is deeply informative, eminently readable even for non-techies (except on occasion when he goes Full Bott, but he let's you know when that's about to happen so you can rush off to safety) and even sometimes funny. How smart and good is Ed? When people use the expression for someone knowledgeable about a topic and say, "He wrote the book on..." -- well, Ed actually really truly wrote the book on Windows 10. When Microsoft wanted the definitive guide for its initial release of Windows 10, they went to Ed. Windows 10 Inside Out for Microsoft Press. (He sent me a few chapters to read through before going to publication -- his theory was that if I could understand it, most anyone could...) You can find it here -- 4-1/2 stars, for a tech book, no less. (To give full credit, it's co-authored with two other gents, Carl Siechert and Craig Stinson. It's not that Ed couldn't have done it, I'm quite sure, but I suspect that given the voluminous nature of the project and deadlines once the coding and material was finally available to be studied, Microsoft probably wanted to be sure the book would be published before, oh, say, Windows 10, the 8th Edition was being released years later...)
Note: Ed knows far more about techie stuff, and is actually a well-rounded soul, most especially as a maven on Pink Floyd and All Things Wilco. Indeed, when we've been at that IFA tech event in Berlin and had a day off to travel -- and when Ed Bott says, "Trust me on this, Bob" (whether about sites, directions, restaurants or even how to say something in a foreign language neither of you speak), you don't debate the options but trust him. Of course, when it's about tech, and he adds, "Just do it," that's when you know before even doing it that your problem has been resolved.
Anyway, the point of all this is that Ed has a wonderful column today that, even if you don't read it (since it's really more of a collection of information than an article), you should bookmark it for later use. It's titled, "Windows 10 how-to: Ed Bott's free tech support and trouble-shooting guide." I'll let him explain it better since...well, this is tech and Ed explains all such things better. He begins by noting --
"Being a Windows expert doesn't mean you have to memorize every shortcut and secret. You just have to know where to find those details when you need them.
"That's the point of this page, where I've collected the links I regularly use to find information and download tools and utilities. These include essential information, troubleshooting tools, and download sites, as well as some of my most popular FAQ pages and tips."
Okay, just to repeat, Ed actually is a Windows expert, and has probably memorized every shortcut and secret. But for everyone else, this is just a monumentally invaluable article. Just save it for later reference, and jump here whenever you have a problem or issue. As Ed says, and it's something I've followed for years when writing my own tech effort (I hesitate to call it a "tech column" in the same article about Ed Bott...), half the battle isn't knowing everything, but knowing where to find it.
And this is a great place to start for finding things. You can find the article here.
And while you're there, do yourself an additional favor and click on the link in his byline for "The Ed Bott Report" to get all his columns and bookmark it for future reference to check out once in a while and see what he's been writing about. He's really good. Honest.
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Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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