Note: class and meeting cancellations due to bad weather will follow the Shawnee Mission School District cancellation announcements at: https://www.smsd.org/


Senior Techies SIG
Oak Park Library
9500 Bluejacket
Overland Park, KS
Approx. 1 block west of Hwy 69 & 95th St.

Wednesday, Feb 12, 2020, 2:304:00 pm
Small Meeting Room

Bring yourself, your friends, your questions, and your gadgets for an open question and answer session. We will also look at the new text messaging apps available.
Hope to see you there,
Joe Callison

Visitors Always Welcome

 



General Meeting
Jo Co Central Resource Library
9875 West 87th Street
Overland Park, KS
Carmack Community Room

Friday, February 14, 2020, 1:303:30 pm
Q&A 1st hour, Presentation 2nd hour

Guest Speaker: Lisa Battani, Au.D
Audiologist and Hearing Aid Program Director,
Associated Audiologists, Inc.

Topic: “Hearing Aid Technology”

Dr. Battani serves as the practice’s Hearing Aid Program Director and specializes in hearing aid technology.  She earned her Doctorate of Audiology degree from Central Michigan University/Vanderbilt University and performed a fellowship with the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona. She received her Master’s and Bachelor of Arts degrees in audiology from the University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, Iowa.

Visitors Always Welcome

 



VIRTUAL TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE (VTC)
Saturday, February 8, 12:00 – 3:00 pm CT
APCUG’s Virtual Technology Conferences are FREE!
Registration closes @ 11:30 PM ET on February 7

  • Attend using your computer, tablet or phone with the Zoom.us app.
  • Download the app for the device you will be using at: https://zoom.us/download
  • Sessions are 50 minutes with time for Q&A
  • Register once via Eventbrite
  • You do not need an Eventbrite account to attend the conference
  • You do not need a Zoom account to attend the VTC
  • Before the event, you will receive an email with directions and links for attending Tracks 1 and 2.
  • Day of conference, after connecting via Zoom, it is very helpful if you sign into each presentation you attend via the Chat Box; first and last name you used to register at Eventbrite.
  • Why? If all of the questions aren’t answered during the session, the rest of the answers will be sent to you. Or, there might be a handout.
  • Register at Eventbrite→

More information at: https://kcsenior.net/apcug/



RIP Windows 7: We’re Going to Miss You
More than a decade after its release, Windows 7 support ended on January 14, 2020. Let’s look back at what made Windows 7 so awesome and why it’s a great operating system we’ll remember for the rest of our lives.  Continue reading →


Congratulations to the winners in APCUG’s 2019 Contests.
We won 1st Place in the Website Contest due in part to Joe Callison’s excellent articles. PDF →



GEEK FREE
By Joe Callison
5 January, 2020

Rich Communication Services (RCS)

Short Message Service (SMS) has been used since 1992 for sending text messages over mobile phone carrier service. It is limited to 160 text characters per message. Some enhanced message services were developed that could handle up to 1600 characters per message, but a real advance in capability came into use after about 2005 with Multimedia Messaging Service  (MMS). This expanded the capability of text messages to also contain files such as photos, videos, audio and documents. The data limit per message was initially 300 KB and then later increased to 600 KB, which is not enough for high resolution photos or video so they are compressed into smaller, grainier images. Since internet servers are utilized for storage and transfer of data between carriers, MMS is not real-time. Another breakthrough has begun to be rolled out in 2019 with Rich Communication Services (RCS). Theoretically the data limit per message is over 10 GB, but in practice may be limited to something less by the carrier service used.

Adoption of RCS by the mobile phone carriers has been slow to develop because of the necessary changes to the carriers’ networks and software required to support its use. Google recently solved the software problem by introducing an RCS protocol, or Chat as it is called, in a new version of their Messages app, also available in the new Samsung Messages app, that provides the software services to support the RCS capabilities of the carriers. The Messages app from Google, LLC is now available for free download from the Play Store for Android users.

The Chat protocol for RCS supports capabilities such as read receipts, group chats, video chats, typing indicators, live updates and more. When support of RCS is available from all of the mobile phone carriers, Chat will be possible between any of the carriers’ customers using Android phones. Communications with messaging services or carriers that do not support Chat will revert to SMS/MMS text. Apple has not decided to get on board yet, as they already have all of the capabilities of RCS in their iMessage app plus encryption that Chat currently lacks. Of course the iMessage features are limited to communications between Apple users.

For more information on RCS or the history of text messaging, see the following link:
https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/what-is-rcs-messaging/



FOR~GO
(For Geeks Only)

By Joe Callison
21 December 2019

Device Manager

Windows Device Manager can be accessed in Windows 10 by right-clicking on the Start icon to get the menu, by typing Device Manager in the Cortana search box, or by using the old Control Panel desktop app. Device Manager is useful for troubleshooting or updating computer device drivers for hardware installed in or attached to the computer. Even if the hardware is removed, the previously detected item will still show with a light colored icon in the list and can be seen by clicking the “Show hidden devices” under View. Abandoned devices that are not likely to be connected again can be removed from the list by right-clicking on the item and choosing “Uninstall device” or if you have both toolbars checked in the Customize settings under View you can select the item and click on the red X in the snap-in toolbar, which only shows when applicable for the item selected. Similarly you can disable a device or update its driver from the right-click menu or the toolbar.

Right-clicking a device and choosing Properties, the Driver tab can be opened to view the installed driver version. The Driver Details will list the driver paths and file names that are installed. Update Driver is another way to get to the update choices. Roll Back Driver allows going back to the previously installed driver in the event the updated driver causes problems. The Disable Device and Uninstall Device choices can also be accessed in the Driver tab.  

Detected devices that can’t be identified or that drivers can’t be found for by Device Manager will show with an exclamation mark on the device icon. One method to identify the item is to look at the Properties for the device. In the Details tab, use the drop down list under Property to view the “Device instance path” or “Hardware IDs”. By doing an internet search on the first part of the value before the REV number, such as PCI\VEN_8086DEV_2A42&SUBSYS_04061028 which can be identified as a Mobile Intel(R) 4 Series Express Chipset Family, an appropriate driver may then be searched for.

Sometimes a problem with a device can be fixed by simply choosing the “Uninstall device” and then after it is removed from the list, under the Action menu choose “Scan for hardware changes” or restart the computer to detect the device again and the driver will be reloaded and may fix the problem.

For old legacy hardware that does not support “Plug-and-Play”, which is how the computer can detect new hardware automatically, there is a wizard accessible through the Action menu item “Add legacy hardware”. I have not tried using that feature. As noted in the wizard, the manufacturer’s installation files should be used instead if at all possible.

Avoid the temptation to use drivers from unfamiliar sources on the internet or using driver updater software found there. It is likely to either be infected by malware or is malware itself. Driver updater software is often the source of other unwanted programs that get downloaded and installed without your knowledge, or the driver updater may find newer versions than currently installed but not appropriate for your computer hardware. The best source for drivers and driver updater software is the support area of the computer manufacturer’s website. If you can’t find a Windows 10 driver listed, try looking under the earlier versions of Windows that have the same bit processor (32 bit or 64 bit) as your Windows 10 installation as they will often work. If not found there, the hardware device manufacturer’s website often has generic drivers that should work, but may not have all of the features the driver from the computer manufacturer would have provided. Occasionally I have even had to resort to looking up the manufacturer and model number of the main chip on the device, such as an NVIDIA graphics chip, REALTEK audio or LAN chip, or BROADCOM WLAN chip and getting a generic driver from their website.

My last bit of advice is to create a restore point before updating a driver that you are unsure about so you can more easily undo the changes. Sometimes the “rollback driver” is not able to undo a change. If updating multiple drivers, do it for each driver and check that it works properly before going to the next driver, otherwise you may not know which driver is causing the problem.



Volunteer

SenCom is a Kansas not-for-profit corporation that is run by volunteers. There are current openings for “Hospitality: General Meeting” and “Program Director”. If you would like to inquire about these volunteer openings, call or email our president:
Bob Bowser, (785) 608-4904,  sencomprez@gmail.com



SenCom gratefully acknowledges the
following organizations for their support:

Google Fiber

City of Shawnee,
Parks & Recreation Department

Johnson County Library:
Central Resource, Oak Park



SENCOM IS A NOT-FOR-PROFIT KANSAS CORPORATION
UNDER THE IRS 501(C)(3) RULES

https://apcug2.org/




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