An International Association of Technology and Computer User Groups


Linux Wednesday Workshops: Orv Beach (Linux Expo (SCALE) guru), John Kennedy (Advisor, Regions 3 & 6/7), and Sharan Kalwani (SouthEastern Michigan Computer Organization)

John Kennedy responds to the question of “Why are there so many versions of Linux” with the question, “Why are there so many cars?” Because everybody doesn’t like the same car and that also pertains to the Linux desktop. Are you a fan of open-source software or you have heard about it and would like to learn more? This Linux team will introduce you to the world of Linux in the next series of APCUG workshops. We will begin with an introduction to Linux and answer the questions “why so many.” We will talk about the installation process to get Linux working on your computer. We’ll move on to talk about how to choose between the many options you have with Linux. Finally, we’ll spend some time discussing software that runs on Linux to do your daily computer needs. After each workshop, there will be time for Q&A like our past workshops.

Click here to Register→

All workshops will be at the same time and use the same passcode-encrypted Zoom meeting link. The link will be sent to you with the workshop reminders.

Linux Workshop #3, December 2, 11:00 am CT
“Distros and Desktops”

So, you now know how easy it is to install Linux and you learned some of the different options you have running it, and you know that there are many different versions of Linux called “distros.” Join Sharan Kilwani as he guides you through the process of determining which distro might be best for you. Once you have that choice made, then you have the many options for a Desktop Environment (DE) for that distro. Join Orv and John (and maybe a few additional presenters) as they demonstrate their favorite DE and why they like it. Once you’ve attended this workshop you’ll be ready to select the version of Linux and the Desktop Environment best for you and give Linux a try.

Linux Workshop #4, December 1611:00 am CT
“Software, Applications and Package Management”

Each Linux distro comes fully loaded with the software/packages you need for your daily work. But as you may have heard, Linux has many options for each type of software you might use. This workshop will focus on all things software. John will share what’s the best software for Windows users to make the transition to Linux easy (with NO learning curve). Then Orv and Sharan will make presentations on installing additional software packages and keeping them updated, along with managing these applications.  We’ll finish up by sharing many alternative applications in the Linux world for programs people have been using in the Windows/Mac world.

December 9, 11:00 am CT
Bill James, APCUG Advisor, Region 8
VP, Computer Club of Oklahoma City

Doing it myself vs. Having it done

You have now decided what you want to automate using a checklist, you have purchased some of your devices and have them working to your satisfaction (or not). Or, you are still deciding on DIY or paying someone to put everything together for you and need help with all the separate apps, systems, and wireless protocols. All this and more will be discussed at this Home Automation wrap-up workshop.

Click here to register→

NOOZ is sent to your group’s officers listed in the UGLS (APCUG’s membership database). Thank you for keeping the list up to date. If you need a username and password or don’t remember them, please contact Lee Laughner, Membership Chair at llaughner(at)apcug.org

       1.      November 7 VTC and Annual Meeting
       2.      APCUG Workshops
       3.      Zoom Information
       4.      APCUG Reports, Q4 Issue
       5.      Greetings from the Region 8 Advisor

2. APCUG Workshops


Part 2 – November 18, 2020 – Getting and Installing Linux
Part 3 – December 2, 2020 – Distros and Desktops
Part 4 – December 16, 2020 – Software, Applications, and Package Management

Register Here


Part 4 – December 9, 2020 – Doing it myself vs. Having it done

Register Here

3. OnZoom Information

From Rob Truman, Webmaster, Computer of Sun Lakes, AZ: OnZoom is an immersive platform where consumers can search for and enjoy new interactive and engaging virtual experiences from creators of all sizes, from large media organizations to creative individual Hosts.

OnZoom was announced at the recent Zoom User Conference (Zoomtopia). It is a unique online events platform and marketplace to allow Zoom users with a Pro account to create, host, and monetize anything from a yoga class to a concert or even teach a cooking class via the Zoom Meetings platform. Hosts can create a single event or an event series. Events can be free, paid, or a hybrid of both free and paid tickets. You can search for events and find out more about OnZoom at https://onzoom.us

OnZoom is currently in a public beta and taking applications. You can become a host and host your own events by going to https://zoom.us/onzoom/becomeahost

4. 2020 APCUG Reports, Q4 Fall Issue (PDF) You will find:  

  • Zoom Information
  • Region Reports Meeting Ideas
  • APCUG’s Grant program
  • How-tos, Tips & Tricks for member groups
  • And much more….

5. Greetings for the Region 8 Advisor

Many Region 8 groups are having online meetings. The Cajun Clickers are continuing their programs using Zoom conducting Windows 10 classes, Extra Help for MS Office, and Internet SIGs in addition to their monthly meetings. The North Texas PC User Group uses various teleconferencing software:  ZOOM, Microsoft TEAMS, and GoToMeeting to conduct their meetings. What software a club uses is a matter of choice.

APCUG has free ZOOM licenses for groups to use. If you have not tried to have an online meeting using teleconferencing software, using one of the ZOOM licenses allows you to do that. Other Region 8 groups using online teleconferencing software are Bits and Bytes and the Senior Computer Users Group of Greater Kansas City. The Computer Club of Hots Springs will be utilizing one of the ZOOM licenses for their first online meeting.

Congratulations to all the groups that are using alternative means to continue their computer programs. Your members expect this from you. Whatever you were able to do in-person, you can do online. APCUG has the means to make it happen with free licenses. If you have questions or issues, please reach out. We are here to help.

Copyright © 2020 Association of Personal Computer User Groups, All rights reserved.

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 →

PUSH Articles – June 2019:

Apple v Windows PCs
This month I’ll take a look at the differences between Apple and Windows based PCs from the perspective of a repair guy such as myself.  Continue reading→

Aukey USB Outlet with Night Light Plug-in
I spotted this Aukey USB outlet with Night Light Plug-in on Amazon one day. It was on sale for $6 off the $19.99 price and I thought it was a good deal for $13.99.  Continue reading→

Backup Tools and Procedures
With the growing popularity of smart phones and tablets, the need for backup has expanded to include those devices as well as traditional Windows and Macintosh PCs.  Continue reading→

Brain Dead In San Diego
Even if you don’t do a complete system backup, please back up your important documents (i.e.- photos, videos, office docs, PDF files and any other files you deem important to you) to a USB drive, CD/DVD, external HD or the Cloud.  Continue reading→

Do you know these Google Icons?
The icons represent some popular Google apps . . . All these apps are FREE with Google, all you need is a Google account.  Continue reading→

Google Fi
Google Fi will provide your phone the best of any of the three networks, Sprint, T-Mobile, or U.S. Cellular, by intelligently switching to the best network at that time and location.  Continue reading→

Interesting Articles, Websites and YouTube Videos
Are Cheap Windows and Office Programs a Scam? Italian Grandma Hilariously Learns How to Use Google Home Device. Do This Instead of Printing (you’ll save time and money). Etc…  Continue reading→

More About Browsers
If you open a website you are using a browser. Your computer or mobile device came with a browser installed, but is it the “right” one or the only one you should use?  Continue reading→

No Joy in Techville?
Pour a liquid into a glass just up to the midpoint. An optimist would say the glass is half full. A pessimist would say the glass is half empty. An engineer would say the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.  Continue reading→

Office 2019 and Changes to Office 365
Microsoft has been releasing new versions of Office every three years for a long time. The newest version, Office 2019, is now available in stores or online.  Continue reading→

Review – Grammarly
Recently, I discovered a piece of software called Grammarly. It reviews your writing and finds typos, spelling errors and grammar mistakes.  Continue reading→

Review – Honey App
Do you use the Honey app when you shop online? I do. It even works at Amazon.  Continue reading→

Using MacOS X Photos
I normally do not use Photos.app as I like to manage my own images but this was at my wife’s request to move some images.  Continue reading→

What happens in the downloading process vs. the saving process on a computer?
This month I’ll discuss a couple of topics that were passed along as suggestions.  Continue reading→

What is a VPN (Virtual Private Network) and why use one?
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a connection method used to add security and privacy to private and public networks, like Wi-Fi Hotspots and the Internet.  Continue reading→

What’s with Google and YouTube?
Over 13 years ago, Google bought YouTube for $1.65 billion. Thirteen years later the YouTube purchase is generally considered to be one of the best consumer tech acquisitions ever . . . Contonue reading→

Who Ya Gonna Call?
I teach computer classes at a local library and hear a myriad of students’ horror stories about their unpleasant computer experiences.  Continue reading→

Freshly Squeezed Reviews: Write Right
I have been reviewing software and hardware for about two decades. Sometimes the words just flow, other times I need to pry them from my skull.  Continue reading→

You may have a new speech recognition program
I have used several speech recognition programs over the years. I have tried them all, and suddenly a new one showed up on my computer and it is the best one yet!  Continue reading→

PUSH Articles – April 2019:

Add a Display!
If you spend a lot of time at your computer, as I do, you might want to consider having two separate monitors. I love my two displays, as it gives me lots of extra digital “real estate” for when I have many windows open.  Continue reading→

A Great Photoshop Alternative
Gimp is a great free image manipulation program much like Photoshop. Here is a YouTube link to a 13+ minute video of a basic beginners’ guide that I found very helpful:  Continue reading→

Audacity & Digital Audio Noise Reduction
This article describes the use of a feature of Audacity, the popular digital audio editor application, called noise reduction. Noise is audible all around us. When we make an audio recording, usually some noise is included.  Continue reading→

Build a Wall?
Walls can keep things out. Walls can keep things in. Walls that do these well usually aren’t so good at also letting some things pass from one side to the other.  Continue reading→

CES 2019
There were 180,000 attendees, 4500 vendors and some 500 qualified press.
Notable items: More IoT and AI, plus 5G, 4K and OLED, autonomous cars, VR and AR
(VR means “Virtual Reality”. AR means “Augmented Reality.)  Continue reading→

Clean Your Computer!
Files such as documents and pictures residing on your hard drive are unlikely to noticeably slow down your system if you have adequate hard drive space. However, software that loads every time the computer is used will eventually cause a significant drag on you system.  Continue reading→

Consider the Risks of Helping Friends with PC Problems
If you are known as a computer enthusiast, your less-experienced friends probably come to you for help when they run into problems. However, you should consider the risks before you agree.  Continue reading→

Cord Cutting or How I Love to Pay Less to Get More of What I Think I Need
 I may have just stumbled on, for me, the Holey (sic) Grail of news: For years, I have been attempting to get entire news shows from the internet, but only gleaned news clips, necessitating watching a few minute snippets and then having to click on another snippet and another . . .  Continue reading→

Encrypting a Drive
One of the added features of Windows 10 Pro over the Home edition capabilities, is the ability to encrypt a drive to protect all data and files contained on that drive from unauthorized access. An administrator can select a drive from the File Explorer app and turn on the BitLocker option from the right mouse button option list.  Continue reading→

A firewall is a program that monitors traffic on a network and rejects any data that violate its security rules. . . it can be host-based where it resides on a computer and controls all the data transferred through its data port, or it can be network-based where it resides on a modem or router that connects a local area network (LAN) to the Internet.  Continue reading→

Great Entertainment from Planet Coaster
Recently, I found in my browsing a game called “Planet Coaster” where I have enjoyed watching videos of roller coasters, parks, rides, and more all created by others who have been enjoying the tremendous creativity possible with this game.  Continue reading→

HDMI Device Connections
HDMI means High-Definition Multimedia Interface and it is the current popular way to connect devices with a cable. The big advantage of HDMI is that it transmits not only high-definition video but also audio as well, in one comparatively thin cable connection.  Continue reading→

In Defense of Apple Maps
The big troika of smartphone navigation apps are Google Maps, Waze, and Apple Maps. I believe that recently Apple has brought its maps app up to parity and then some.  Continue reading→

Interesting Internet Finds
While going through more than 300 RSS feeds, I often run across things I think might be of interest to other user group members. The following are some more items I found interesting during January, February and March of 2019.  Continue reading→

Luci, a light powered by the sun.
It has a solar cell on top that accumulates charge sufficient to power the light. When you first get the Luci unit, it needs to be inflated. It’s pretty much flat and although the solar cell will still charge, the light does not have any space to shine.  Continue reading→

Mistakes We Make When Buying a Computer
There is a lot of tech jargon flying around, and all of it is competing to get your money. Because of that, mistakes are easy to make, and they can easily result in your money going to waste.  Continue reading→

My Meshed-Up Wi-Fi
Our modern electronic devices are all about connectedness. It seems everything we have now is connected, and that connection is integral to the capabilities that are provided for us. Before they were connected, computers were just big boxes that made calculating and writing easier; . . .  Continue reading→

Partially Locked Laptop
This month I’ll look at an interesting situation of a partially locked PC that I picked up at a recent auction. One of the features that all PCs share is the ability to set a supervisor, master or boot PC password.  Continue reading→

Personalize your Desktop
All desktops are not created equal. Just look at the differences the next time you go to a class where you bring and use your own laptop. I bet none of those other desktops will look like your own desktop.  Continue reading→

Phishing Expeditions
A “phishing” email is one that attempts to obtain your personal account information to use for unauthorized purposes. When I included that article in Green Bytes, I hadn’t personally received a phishing email. But this month I did . . . Continue reading→

Samsung Galaxy Inductor
Samsung has made some very innovative uses of a type of electronic device called an inductor, which is a coil of wire. When I took the basic electronics design lab course in college, we studied and modeled three basic circuit components: resistors, capacitors and inductors.  Continue reading→

Security Tips
Attention Facebook and Android users: Apparently, some platforms and applications on those portable devices transmit information about you and your “doings” when the app opens.  Continue reading→

Smart Homes
I’m pretty sure that almost all of you have heard about having a ‘Smart Home’ and may be wondering what that’s all about. This month I’ll take a look at what that means and some of the issues to watch out for.  Continue reading→

Smart Phone Purchase
Recently, my phone was “bricked” by an upgrade. Bricking is when something makes your phone unusable, usually a reference to a software change rather than physical damage.  Continue reading→

To Discern the Truth
Today we are all unwitting participants in a game played out on the internet to discern the true identities of those we communicate with. Unfortunately, the stakes are higher than some cash divided among the contestants that is proportional to the number of celebrity panelists deceived by the imposters, as in To Tell the Truth.  Continue reading→

Traveling with Electronics
When preparing for a trip, think carefully about what you really need. Every piece of gear you add is more weight to carry, another thing to protect, and another distraction from visiting and sightseeing.  Continue reading→

Traveling With Your Devices
You are probably used to using your computer devices at home, but what about traveling? Taking your devices with you can make your trip much better with directions, shopping, gas, emergency needs, entertainment, and much more.  Continue reading→

Wi-Fi Security
Wi-Fi is all around us. In homes, libraries, airports, shopping centers, recreational places, houses of worship, the CA buildings, just about everywhere. Wi-Fi is the first step in the complex way we get to the internet for information, entertainment, or purchases.  Continue reading→

Windows 10 May Update
Most of our Windows 10 Home users will get this release when Microsoft decides to push it out to their PCs via Windows Update. That will likely be sometime in April, possibly early May, especially for newer PCs.  Continue reading→

Windows 10 Screen Capture Tools
The ability to capture an image of a whole computer screen or Window has been around since the 1960’s. It comes in handy for anyone who wants to include a portion of a screen, such as a picture, group of text, chart or graph, in another place.  Continue reading→