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Steve Jobs 1955-2011

"If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on."
~ Steve Jobs


Facebook's News Feed Change: Love It or Hate It? [POLL]

Facebook users had mixed reactions to the revamped News Feed the social network began rolling out Tuesday night.

Instead of asking users to choose between “Top Stories” and “Most Recent” links, the new News Feed adjusts content based on the last time they checked it. Users who rarely log in, for instance, see top stories from their networks. More frequent users see recent content in chronological order. Facebook also changed the way photos are displayed in the News Feed, making them larger and more prominent.

The most drastic change to the News Feed concept is the addition of a news ticker. Above the chat column, users now see real-time updates from their networks. When they click items from the ticker, the content is brought up in a hover window and the user does not need to leave the page in order to interact with their updates.

Facebook's News Feed Change: Love It or Hate It? [POLL]

What's Coming In Windows 8

From lifehacker.com

Back To School

Logging Into Powerschool

Attention Parents!
If you are having problems logging into PowerSchool, please follow the steps provided in the following websites. If you still have issues after following these instructions, please contact your school.

doPDF (PDF Printer)

Almost everyone once in a while needs to convert documents to PDF. The doPDF is the easiest tool that does exactly that. It installs a virtual printer on your computer that you can select using the print option from any program on Windows.

Whenever you need to convert a web page, Word document, Excel spreadsheet, photo or pretty much anything else to a PDF file just go to the print option in your program and select doPDF from the ‘Printer’ drop-down menu.

You can set the resolution to anything from 72 dpi to 2400 dpi, and the “printed” files are text searchable.

Download doPDF


Welcome Stephanie Clark

We would like to welcome Stephanie Clark as a new member of our Technology Team. Stephanie will take on the task of Building Level Technology Support for both Enderly Heights and Kling Elementary School.

We are so fortunate to have Stephanie. She is a real "go-getter" and someone told me today..."If you want something done....give it to Stephanie!"

Welcome to our team Stephanie!

Best IPAD Apps

From the website Makeuseof (www.makeuseof.com)

On this page, you will find the best 102 iPad apps for all your needs. We’ve taken the effort to categorize the apps and picked only those we believe to be the best ones and which will most likely be useful to you.

CLICK HERE to go to the page.

How To Make Your Site Public

For teachers who are creating new class pages, follow these steps to get your page published.

This Is Why Kids Should Not Chew Gum In School

Photo of the underside of a classroom computer desk.....

Remembering Martha

Martha was a vital member of our technology team. She was ready to assist with anything we asked her to tackle and if she didn't quite know how...she would ask for instructions and then go at it again.

One could see her around Enderly with her camera capturing special events at the school and preserving memories for the students. She had an archive of photos she had taken throughout the years on her library computer. I remember one day in particular I got a frantic telephone call from Martha. Her computer had a virus...but she thought the hard drive had crashed and she had lost everything including all her photos. The relief in her voice I will never forget as I tried to explain to her that it was probably just a virus that we had been seeing throughout the school division and that her photos were fine. I assured her that we would be right out to Enderly to help her out. As Robin cleaned the virus off her computer, she paced the floor and when everything was back to normal she was ecstatic!

Every time Robin and I went to Enderly, Martha always welcomed us with open arms. "What's up today guys?" she would say. We would get along with our mission was at Enderly and before we left we would always check in with Martha. "So, do you have any new pictures of your grand-babies?" she would ask me. She was always so eager to see the pictures and she always said they were beautiful! She would always comment to Robin about Nathan, Robin's son, and we would always leave with a handful of posters or whatever she had saved for Nathan and my grand-babies since our last visit.

I will always remember her wacky emails and her sense of humor. My most recent correspondence with Martha was just last week when I asked her to take a picture of my sister who took supplies to Headstart from BB and T. She promptly emailed me the picture....which is on our web page right now...and when I sent a thank you reply...she wrote back and said, "anything for you!"

I know for a fact she loved books, the students at Enderly Heights Elementary School, her flower garden, her photography, her kitchen that she had just remodeled, the internet that she had just gotten at her house after all these years, technology....most of the time... ;) , Annie, of whom she was so proud, and my grand-babies whom she had never even met...only through my photos.

Martha was such a unique person and one that I am so thankful to have had in my life. I will always remember her kindness and her generosity. Don't think I ever told her...but I loved Martha Mehler.

"Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal."
~From a headstone in Ireland

Posted by Kathy Jennings

If you have a special memory of Martha, please leave it in the comments below......

Computer Mysteries

Where did my downloaded files go? Why can't I find them?

Your browser chooses where downloads go, but you can control the process.

My printer won't print, and Windows won't allow me to cancel or delete print jobs. What's going on?

Usually this is the result of a communication problem between the PC and printer. Get them talking.

My Recycle Bin has disappeared. How do I go about restoring it?

Whether it was a victim of a glitch or never available in the first place, you can follow a few simple directions to restore the Recycle Bin.

Why does Windows sometimes reboot without my permission, and how do I prevent that from happening?

This problem relates to how Windows installs automatic updates. Fortunately, you can make some tweaks.

I have Microsoft Word installed on my PC. Why can't I open the .docx files my friend sent me?

If you use Word 2003 or an earlier version of the program, all you need is the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats.

Is it absolutely necessary to update Windows?

Yes, you should definitely apply Windows updates for security reasons, but you can take a few steps to cut down Windows' nagging

Does it matter whether I ‘Safely Remove' devices?

Absolutely: If you ignore Windows' requests to "Safely Remove" your storage media, you could end up with corrupted files, un­­readable media, or both.

Free Websites Use Social Networking Tools To Share Content

As social networking and education become increasingly compatible, free websites like Wiggio and Sophia are working to strengthen this bond by providing additional tools for educators and students..........read the full article:

Save Files As PDF in Microsoft Word 2010

In Microsoft Word 2010, open a document and click File.Save As. Enter a file name and choose PDF in the Save As type menu.

In Microsoft Word 2007, download Microsoft's free Save As PDF addon HERE.

Support Tickets

The video shows how the helpdesk system saves time for everyone and makes it easier to have problems fixed.

SOL Testing

Good luck BVCPS students....get plenty of rest and eat a good breakfast and do your best!

Network Upgrade

In Mark's words.......

In this season of high stress in all our lives and work, I thought perhaps a bit of encouraging good news might be welcomed. As of last night the most significant network upgrade in the history Buena Vista City Schools was completed. We now have a 50Mb DIA circuit on 50Mb of Ethernet transport connection with last mile gigabit fiber optic backplane. ( DIA stands for “dedicated internet access”.) This is our main internet “pipe” that we all “drink” from. The larger the pipe, the greater the throughput to the desktop to all users who share that pipe.

This upgrade was achieved without additional budget monies from the City of Buena Vista for the upcoming 2011-2012 budget cycle. Through federal telecommunications programs such as E-rate, 62% of our internet expenses are paid for and with extensive vendor negotiations on price and services, we will not need an increased budget next year from this current year’s figures.

With simultaneous multi-site online testing upon us all, this upgrade could not have happened at a better time for us.

Kathy's Translation.......

Our connection to the internet is 5 times greater than it was before at no extra cost.


Important Announcement

Everyone is encouraged to attend the City Council Meeting on Thursday, May 12 @ 6 p.m. at the Municipal Building. There is an important update on the Superintendent's Blog....Please Read!

Technology Headlines

Google Music

Google is preparing to launch a test version of a new digital music service that will enable users to upload their music libraries to the company's servers.

Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31001_3-20061280-261.html#ixzz1LwEGnExn

Microsoft near $7 billion deal for Skype

Microsoft is putting the finishing touches on a deal to buy Internet phone company Skype for between $7 billion and $8 billion.

Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-20061295-94.html#ixzz1LwEelI3I

Update on Osama Virus

The FBI sent out an alert Wednesday warning computer users not to open e-mails or links claiming to show videos or photos of Osama bin Laden’s death.

According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, an ongoing virus has spread throughout the Internet on social networking sites, such as Facebook, as well as through e-mailed links, leading to infected computer systems and even the theft of users’ identities.

“As soon as sensational stories hit like that, they’ll send e-mails that lead to random sites because people want to hear about it,” said Alec Hart, head tech at Balance Computer Repair in St. Joseph. The same happened with the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan in March, he said.

The malware contained within these links will not only wipe a computer with a virus, but will access the users’ address book to further spread the virus.

Mr. Hart said the easiest way to avoid clicking those links is to Google the information that the e-mail claims to provide. If a photo of the deceased Osama bin Laden has been released, users will be able to find it on a reputable news source instead of having to rely on an e-mail or a Facebook wall post.

According to the Associated Press, President Barack Obama has decided not to release any photos of the deceased Osama bin Laden, so any link claiming to show this photo or video should not be opened.

Typically, e-mails that contain malicious links or viruses will have major misspellings and may contain .zip files, an archive file that contains multiple files and folders, which Mr. Hart says is to difficult and time-consuming for the average computer user to send.

Also, Mr. Hart said “it’s important to know how the people in your address book write to you,” so look for any inconsistencies in language from e-mails sent from friends, which will typically be a giveaway it was sent as part of a scam.

The FBI and Mr. Hart also suggests to keep antivirus software up-to-date (there are plenty of free versions available), as well as ensure your e-mail settings scan attachments before they are opened.

Office 2010 Tips and Tricks

Learn to get the most out of the latest version of Microsoft Office with this latest free guide! Office 2010 includes many improvements over 2007. As with all Office releases, however, these improvements are far from obvious to the average user.

Get the free .pdf file HERE.


The FBI has issued a warning to computer users "to exercise caution when they receive e-mails that purport to show photos or videos of Osama bin Laden's recent death."

It warns users not to open unsolicited e-mails or click links contained within such messages, as it could be from an unknown sender.

There are several email and Facebook scams doing the rounds, one shows a Facebook page, claiming to be a video of "Osama bin Laden killed live on video." Read the full article:


Technology Support Tickets

The e-Stream ticket support system is gone. We have a new ticket system in place. To submit a technology support ticket, go to bvcps.net.....Departments......Technology.....Technology Support Ticket. This system works in the same way as e-stream...the only difference is where the link is located. You will not be able to access this ticket system outside of our school system.

LIKE this page on Facebook for some great tips, websites, and free .pdf guides. Click on the left hand side.....ALL MAKEUSEOF GUIDES...to access the free material.

Giveaway Of The Day

Giveaway of the Day is a website worth checking out. I have gotten some great software there and the best thing about it...it's free!! Here's how it works:

Basically, every day they nominate one software title that will be a Giveaway title of that day. The software is available for download for 24 hours (or more, if agreed by software publisher) and that software is absolutely free. That means – not a trial, not a limited version – but a registered and legal version of the software is completely free for visitors.

The software product is presented in its full functionality, without any limitations save for those mentioned in Terms and Conditions.

For example, today's software is Picture Collage Maker Pro 2.5.7

Check it out at: http://www.giveawayoftheday.com/

Lightning Can Fry Your Computer..So Protect It!

During thunderstorms, many people are leaving their computer unprotected. Simply turning a computer off during a thunderstorm does nothing whatsoever to protect the computer. Nearby lightning strikes can cause surges through the power lines into your house or office, and these often damage your computer. Sometimes just the power supply gets fried, sometimes the whole computer has to be replaced. Power surges also do incremental damage to electronics, so the computer works okay most of the time, but occasionally plays up. This type of fault is hard to diagnose or fix, so when storms approach, the best idea is to turn off the computer and unplug it.

Don't forget to unplug your phone line or cable from the computer, too. Phone lines and cables are probably the number one way for surges to get to and fry your computer. Many people end up with fried modems from surges carried through the telephone lines or cable lines.

Whitelist That Email Address

A lot of Gmail users ask me about this problem...A legitimate email was sent to the spam folder or quarantine folder!

Gmail by default uses your contact list to find the safe addresses. However, many times your BVCPS mail or your friend’s mail is mistakenly considered as spam by Gmail malware engine and it goes to Spam folder.

To Whitelist an Expected Mail in Advance:

If you are expecting an important mail from a person whose email address you already know then you can white list that ID so you can be sure that the mail would not escape to spam folder and will definitely land into your inbox.

For this, click on “Contacts” from your Gmail window. Then select “Add contact” and “Save” it after filling out necessary details. Now, that contact becomes safe address and email from it will always come directly into your inbox.

To Quickly While list a Particular Sender:

If you find an important mail in spam folder then you can quickly instruct Gmail not to move such mails from inbox by just clicking onto “Not Spam” button at the top of the mail. The selected mail would be moved to inbox immediately and it would be added to white list forever.


If you suspect that your mail in inbox would be marked spam by Gmail team, then you can make sure that this doesn’t happen clicking on “Reply button” drop-down and adding it to contact list.

To Whitelist Multiple Addresses in Gmail:

You can make use of filtering feature of Gmail to whitelist multiple email addresses. Suppose that you want to add your company domain address in whitelist so that you never miss any important mail from your company then all you need to do is to apply an appropriate filter.


Go to “Settings” in Gmail, and then click “Filters“. Create a new filter and type the domain you want to whitelist in “From” field. For example “@mycomany.com”. Click on “Next Step” and then check “Never send to spam”. Finally, click on “Create filter”and you are done.

If you want to add certain group of email addresses as trusted source, then use above filtering technique with “email1@example.com OR email2@example.com” and so on in “From” field.

Note: The amount of spam mails you receive depends on where you have distributed your email address. As a word of caution, never submit your mail to unreliable websites or write it publicly on internet.

Posted by Kathy Jennings


VIRUS ALERT! Windows Fix Disk Virus

Windows Fix Disk Virus is not a Real Disk Optimization Program but itself a virus, more precisely a new kind of fake Virus program from the same family of HDD Repair. This program is distributed with the aid of Trojans.

When the Trojan is commenced, it will automatically download and set up Windows Fix Disk Virus onto your PC without your consent and knowledge and configure it to run when you start Windows.

When Windows Fix Disk Virus is started, it will simulate a system scan and find a lot of various infections that will not be fixed unless you first buy the program. Important to know, all of these reported infections are bogus and inexistent on your computer! So you can safely ignore the scan results.

While Windows Fix Disk Virus has started, it will cease the ability to run any programs as a procedure to scare you into thinking that your PC is affected with spyware.

WindowsFixDisk screen shot

A number of fake messages will be shown such as:

  • Windows detected a hard drive problem.
  • A hard drive error occurred while starting the application.
  • Fix Disk Windows Disk Diagnostics will scan the system to identify performance problems. Start or Cancel Do not press the Start button, if you press it will simulate a fake scan and scar you that wrong with your hard drive. You would see the following message: Windows Disk Diagnostics Windows detected a hard disk error. It will appear that everything on your computer has been erased. Critical Error Hard Drive not found. Missing hard drive.

Understand these are all scam alerts and make sure you do not take any action on these warning messages. Submit a technology ticket!


Do You Feel Lucky?

Ordinarily when you type in a key phrase in a Google search, you press the search button and Google returns a results page that shows multiple Web sites matching your search phrase.  The "I'm Feeling Lucky" button skips the search results page and goes directly to the first ranked page for that search phrase.

If you type "white house" in the search box and press "I'm Feeling Lucky", you will go straight to www.whitehouse.gov. If you type "apple" into the search box and press I'm Feeling Lucky, you will go directly to Apple Computer's Web site.

"I'm Feeling Lucky" is handy if you're faily confident that the first result in the search engine is going to be exactly the page you want to find.  It saves time and clicking to just go to the page with the first click.

Facebook In Education

A Facebook Page for information about how educators can best use Facebook.

Speed Up Your Computer

If your computer is bogging down in software and who knows what, and you're tired of watching lines fill across your screen or rotating little icons, or whatever it takes to open applications you double-clicked on five minutes ago! ARGH!
That's it. Let's speed up the computer to get it to some sort of median usability again. Here's how.

Remove spyware, and help protect your computer from viruses

Spyware collects personal information without letting you know and without asking for permission. From the websites you visit to user names and passwords, spyware can put you and your confidential information at risk. In addition to privacy concerns, spyware can hamper your computer's performance. 
Download Microsoft Security Essentials for free to help guard your system in the future from viruses, spyware, adware, and other malicious software (also known as malware). Microsoft Security Essentials acts as a spyware removal tool and includes automatic updates to help keep your system protected from emerging threats.
The Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool is another utility that checks computers running Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 2000, and Windows Server 2003 for infections by specific, prevalent malicious software, including Blaster, Sasser, and Mydoom, and helps remove any infection found.

 Free up disk space

The Disk Cleanup tool helps you to free up space on your hard disk to improve the performance of your computer. The tool identifies files that you can safely delete and then enables you to choose whether you want to delete some or all of the identified files.
Use Disk Cleanup to:
  • Remove temporary Internet files.
  • Delete downloaded program files, such as Microsoft ActiveX controls and Java applets.
  • Empty the Recycle Bin.
  • Remove Windows temporary files, such as error reports.
Click Start, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, point to System Tools, and then click Disk Cleanup

Remove the bloat

It's inevitable that over time you're going to collect a nice long list of applications you installed and used once out of curiosity. It's time to clean up the mess.
Head to your Control Pqnel > Uninstall a program (Windows Vista or Windows 7) or Add and Remove a Program (Windows XP). Start editing from the top of the list. Windows makes it easy to see what you use and don't by adding a column indicating the last time you used the program. A good rule of thumb: delete everything you haven't used in a month. If you miss it, you can always reinstall it later.

Defragment your hard drive

The more you use your hard drive, the more disorganized it can get behind the scenes. You don't see defragmentation in typical operating system usage. However, over time, the more spins your hard drive has to make in order to find the information you're looking for, the longer you have to wait.
Defragmenting your drive will reorganize and clean up your data so it is easily accessible and, therefore, faster to access.
Windows comes with an application that will defragment your hard drive for you. It's appropriately called Disk Defragmenter and you can find it in your Utilities folder.

Install More RAM

You can't beat physics. Your hard drive contains moving pieces and is slower than RAM. When you open applications and need more RAM than what you've got on your system, your operating system will partition a chunk of your hard drive to use as RAM in order to keep your applications running.
So while you're operating system doesn't grind to a halt (that's good), it slows to a snail's pace (that's bad). Remedy the situation by upgrading your RAM. RAM is getting cheaper, and really, you can't have enough.

From a Wiki How To Article and Microsoft At Workhttp://www.microsoft.com/atwork/maintenance/speed.aspx

10 Technologies About to Go Extinct

1. Landline phones: Walk into any college dorm room and ask to use a landline. You'll be met with blank stares. With cell-phone technology continually evolving, it seems that these days only a handful of people are still moving into a new house and having the landline turned on.

2. Floppy disks If you still have a few lying around, they make great coasters.

3. Wristwatches: Throwing on a fancy watch may make you look professional, but let's be honest. Cell phones and iPods tell you the time when you're out and about, and virtually every appliance in your home — from your refrigerator to your coffeemaker to your television and your DVD player — has a clock. No one wears a wristwatch anymore, unless he or she grew up with one.

4. VHS tape and VCRs: Many people still keep VCRs around for when grandparents ask to see that old tape of little Bobby — who's now 22 and fresh out of college — shoving cake into his mouth on his first birthday. And you could always turn your VCR into a toaster.

5. Beepers: Annoying devices designed to beep any and every time anyone felt like reaching you, it wasn't sad at all to see these disappear when cell-phone plans dropped below $50 a month around the year 2000.

6. Film cameras: When Polaroid announced in February 2008 that it would stop selling its famous instant-developing film, people ran out to buy up the remaining stock in order to preserve this unique form of photography. Kodak and Fuji still make film, but they, like Polaroid, are counting on their digital-camera lines to keep them afloat.

7. Typewriters: Once one of the most powerful means of mass communication, the typewriter claimed a spot near the top of the technological food chain for more than 100 years.
Today, all that remains is the illogical QWERTY keyboard, which was created to force the typist to go more slowly so the keys wouldn't jam up.

8. The Walkman, Discman and MiniDisc player: The multitasker's dream, the Sony Walkman portable cassette player changed the way the world listened to music in 1979, quickly becoming the hottest accessory of the early 1980s.

9. Dial-up Internet access: It's hard to see why anyone would use a phone line to connect to the Internet when there are so many feasible alternatives.

10. DVDs: What's that, you say? How can DVDs be obsolete? Facts don't lie — DVD sales fell off the proverbial cliff in the first three months of 2009, with some retailers reporting a 40 percent drop from the same period a year earlier.

The fact is that with broadband Internet, you don't need a disc to watch a movie any more. Netflix and Blockbuster have recognized that by rapidly ramping up their online-download services.

Excerpts from a 2009 Fox News Story

Read the story in its entirety at http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,515647,00.html

Math Teacher Has Problems With His Computer

Technology Changes Fast..Really Fast

Today I learned......

I have been using Google Chrome for months and months and months and only discovered today that when you search and the results come up that if you click on the magnifying glass at the end of each search result  you get a screenshot of the website! How did I miss that all these months?? Did you know that? Anyway...it made me smile!

Posted by Kathy Jennings

Taking Notes On The iPad

TrueKeyboard Lite is an enhanced "Notes" application which brings a real keyboard back into your hands. With its realistic look and sounds, you’ll feel like you’re typing on your PC. TrueKeyboard Lite is featuring a Universal Keyboard layout,
Using the method of long hold on a desired key, which opens a window 
with all the possible options of that note or symbol, in most keys.

TrueKeyboard Lite gives you PC keyboard capabilities, complete with those keys that you miss most, like the arrow keys and a dedicated number pad (by clicking on the #+= key).  

The "lite" version is free and there is an upgrade to the Pro version for $1.99.