A couple of tips before a day off…

By | August 29, 2016
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I hope you’re having a good bank holiday. I’m going to having the day off and (if the weather holds) go out somewhere with Julie & the boys, so this might be a short issue!

I’ve got a couple of tips for you, though – for tablets, phones and PCs.

Let’s start with the PC one, first, which is for Windows 10 or earlier versions of Windows.

Getting back to the desktop
This is a trick I use a lot. It’s when I’ve got a program open, filling the screen. I might even have several programs open that I’m using at once, or I might be flitting between them.

Then I want to start a program – and the shortcut for it is on the desktop (the main background of the screen that you see when nothing’s running).

Now, I could hunt around in the start menu to see if there’s a shortcut there. Or I could click on the minimise button at the top of the window – the third from the left, just over from the one that closes the window. But then I’d have to minimise each window I had open one at a time.

Instead, you can hold the windows key (that’s the one between Ctrl and Alt on the left of the keyboard, or between Fn and alt on some laptops) and while I’m still holding it, tap the D key – D for desktop.

It’ll straight away take you back to the desktop where you can double click on the shortcut you wanted.

It’s not a huge saving of time, but it makes it a little bit more convenient.

Favourite Apps – Speedo
Now and then I’ve been writing about favourite apps of mine – ones that I use myself. I’m not saying they’re ones everyone should have, but I find them useful and you might too.

One I have on my phone (and you could put on a tablet instead) is a Speedo app. It does exactly what you’d think – it tells you how fast you’re going.

Now, my car and my wife’s car do both have speedos, so you might wonder why I’d want an app on my phone (apart from so if I ever do go on a bullet train I can marvel at exactly how fast they go).

But I’ve noticed quite often when I’m driving past one of those signs that tells you what speed you’re doing that it doesn’t match what my speedo in the car is telling me. Which always makes me slightly nervous that I’ll be caught for speeding without even realising I’m going over the limit… Or if it’s out the other way that I’ll be driving slower than I meant to and holding everyone up unintentionally!

So I find it useful to be able to check how accurate the speedo in the car is. And that’s what I use the one on the phone for. I don’t use it all the time, I just use it to check how accurate the speedo in the car is.

I should say, if you want to use it yourself, you should load up the app and put the phone or tablet somewhere you can easily see it before you drive off, so you don’t need to touch it whilst driving. When I’ve done it I’ve always used it while my wife’s driving, so I can tap away on the phone to start the app without worrying about the road.

Once I know that the speedo in the car is showing the same as the one on the phone, I know I can trust it – or if it’s out, at least I know.

The speedo on a phone or a tablet is based on GPS – the same satellite signals that a sat-nav uses, which means it can be far more accurate than a car speedo based on how fast the wheels are turning.

The one I use is called DigiHUD Speedometer, though I’m sure there are lots of others and some sat-nav apps have one built in.

Tablet Help is at Hand
If you’ve been thinking about getting the new Tablet Help is at Hand books, to help when things go wrong or won’t work properly on your tablet, since today is a bank holiday most of us will be off for the day. But you can still put your order in online (you don’t need to pay until you get the books so you don’t even need to put card details in if you order online) and we’ll get them straight off in the post to you tomorrow.

Full information (and how to order) is here – best not put it off as you know Murphy’s law says that if you put it off, that’s when something will go wrong with your tablet and you’ll be left struggling with it! Better have the books ready for when that happens!

7 thoughts on “A couple of tips before a day off…

  1. mick burnham

    Hi Tim, I am sure you must get vquite a few unusual requests, so one more, should not make much difference one way or the other, so here goes.
    Would it be too difficult to explain all that you tell us, could you do it in picture foremat? Cnly!!!!!

    1. Tim Post author

      Good question – I’ve already just been writing the next issue so it’s late for changing that one but I’ll have a think about including more screenshots (pictures of the screen) to show it.

  2. Russell Taylor

    Downloaded the digiHUD Speedometer to my MotoG4, just been out to try it – it works a treat. the car speedo is about two miles fast, I’d noticed that with the roadside electronic devices, this app confirmed it.

  3. Kishor Gandhi

    Getting back to the desktop:

    positioning the cursor on the vertical line icon at the extreme bottom right corner of the task bar will show / hide the desktop.

    Clicking on the vertical line icon at the extreme bottom right corner of the task bar will open / close the desktop.

    1. Kishor Gandhi

      By the way reply using Microsoft Edge doesn’t work, I had to use google chrome to add the reply.
      No message is displayed, just returns back to the tip.

      1. Tim Post author

        Interesting – I’m pretty sure other people have managed to add comments using Edge with no problems. But I will have a look into it and see if maybe it’s recently stopped working with Edge.

    2. Tim Post author

      Yes, that’s another good way you can do it if you prefer to use the mouse instead of the keyboard.


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