The Net: Effective Email, Web Surfing, and Assessing Information
Writing and sending email seem pretty no-brainer, once you learn which keys to push when. Until you start not getting responses to your posts and email, or not the responses you'd hoped for. The same goes for Web surfing: once you've found a search engine or directory you're comfortable with, it'll bring you everything you could possibly look for, right?
In a perfect world, perhaps.
In this one, some ways of doing things, like how you write your email and phrase your requests, work better than others. The Internet - World Wide Web - is huge, with billions of documents and databases stashed away, not all of which are accessible by all search engines nor do they all appear on all Web directories.
In order to make the best use of the information and resources - people and material - available through email and the WWW, take the time to learn some skills to help you maximize your online time, thus ensuring you'll have more time offline to enjoy the fruits of your learning.
Adobe Accessibility Aids
Graphics/Sound Search Engines
Art On The Web
Photos On The Web
Sounds On The Web
Other types of search engines
The Internet, whether you participate in the dialogue in a newsgroup, join an email list, join a commercial service such as AOL or register so you can post in one of the free services such as PetHobbyist.com, is a cluster of communities and, like the communities we live in, there are rules and customs that, when you follow them, ultimately make life a lot easier and more pleasant for everyone involved. To make the most of your time on the 'net, familiarize yourself with the community's guidelines.
The Internet allows for rapid, almost instantaneous communication. There is a tendency for many people to just jam their thoughts or questions down into an email form and slam it off into the ether, waiting for someone to answer them. And most times they get an answer. Often, however, they don't. Why? Because they have been so careless about the basics of grammar, syntax, punctuation, spelling and basic organizational clarity that the recipient gives up trying to figure out what the heck the writer was trying to say.
If your job doesn't involve your doing a lot of original writing, you may think that you left all that boring language and writing stuff behind in school. I mean, who needs to diagram sentences and know a past participle from an intransitive verb in the real world, right? Well, while you won't be asked to diagram email or decline verbs, and no one will mark you down for the occasional misspelled word or typographical error, if your email or posts are so disorganized, contain rampant misspellings, or little to no appropriate punctuation --and, perhaps worse, no capital letters--you are less likely to get anyone to respond to you.
Bottom line: if you want to get answers to your questions or communicate information to others, you don't have to be a great writer, just an effective communicator. Having the latest operating platform, a megagazillibyte hard drive, a ton of RAM and supersonic DSL if no one will talk to you?
Herp Information On- and Offline - Melissa Kaplan
READERS & CONVERTERS
Reference Books And Other Useful Resource
Check with your ISP for their recommendations on client-side anti-spam software (that you install on your computer and use with your email software to filter out junk) and to find out what they are doing to filter out spam. Some are developing options for their clients to enable their clients to opt in or out of more aggressive server-side spam filters. Tucows has software compatible for a variety of client-side email programs and operating systems.
Viruses, Hoaxes and
To Protect Your Computer From A Virus
To Clog Up The Internet
Many email programs have a feature whereby you can set the program to automatically capture every email address in email that is sent to you. If you have a friend or coworker who sends out a joke to 35 of their nearest and dearest, all 35 email addresses will be automatically added to your address book if you have your email program set to automatically capture all the addresses in the To:, From; and CC: fields. If you belong to email lists, the list address will be captured, as well as those of list members whose email address appears in these fields.
So, please do yourself, and all your friends, acquaintances and fellow listmembers a big favor and go through your email program's options and set the option to not automatically capture every email address that hits your inbox.
Also install and use an antivirus program to scan all incoming mail or at least manually (meaning you have to tell it to) scan all attachments before you open them, even if they are from your best friend or family members. The people who are writing these viruses and worms know that most users are being lazy and cluttering up their address books (autocapture) and that far too many people are still not using updated antivirus software to scan their mail. The virus/worm creators are exploiting this. As all this infected mail clogs up the Internet, it slows overall speed down, fills up mail boxes, and causes untold problems for Internet service providers (ISP), networks, etc.
Email users who don't take the steps to protect themselves make themselves part of the problem.
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