by Tracy King
Undoubtedly, nowadays the Internet is an indispensable tool in every aspect of our life. We make friends via social media like Facebook, watch TV series through Netflix, use computers to perform our job, etc. The trend is that we don’t have to take the trouble to read books or magazines, because the Internet is so resourceful that it has everything we need to easily and instantly, find and learn new information.
Nonetheless, many times we may get confused with the convenience that the Internet brings to us. While surfing through the Internet, we are introduced to Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook (as mentioned above), plus various other forms of social networks. We have to face limitless advertisements, answers to questions from various sources that only the experts can tell whether they are correct or not. Almost every website asks you to make a registration, or to sign up on their mailing list, so it is very easy to cause yourself to have information overload.
In the event that you are confused about your Internet choices, I have some tips for you that can be helpful. Actually, so long as you keep these five tips in mind when using the Internet, you will find it easy to enjoy a more comfortable experience while online.
Basic Tip #One: Make It Clear What Your Needs Are When Using The Internet
Complication is born the moment a netizen has no idea what he or she virtually wants from the Internet. As I have described above, the content on the Internet is so plentiful, but we merely use a small portion of that abundance. That is to say, we all have spent too much time on some meaningless entertainment, like funny videos on YouTube, goofy images on Reddit, pointless interaction on Facebook, etc.
It’s time that you remember what your original purpose was since the day that you started using the Internet for study, news, work, entertainment, communication, or all of them? You are advised to make a list of your needs, with which you can find the corresponding online resource accordingly. For instance, my list shows that I need to get answers for some questions often, and then I have choices like Yahoo Answer, Quora, Reddit Community, among which, based on my needs, I selected Quora as the website I will refer to initially. That decision made it faster and easier for me to find the answers to my questions, because I am not wasting time with being indecisive about where to look. This tip applies to your other online needs such as music, social media, movies, etc.
There are priorities among those needs. For me, the preference goes to acquiring knowledge from the Internet, then communicating with my friends online, and enjoying movies and musics comes last. Consequently, when I sit in front of the computer, or take my phone out of my pocket, I automatically deal with my top priority first.
Basic Tip #Two: Get Useful Help For Some Complicated Online Products
Many online products can be very useful. They act as good tools for netizens. However, not all the products are easy to get started with, especially for those who are relatively old, and are getting acquainted with the Internet late in their life. Sometimes you just don’t how to apply for a credit card online, or you don’t know how to check your smart phone balance on the Verizon, AT&T, etc, official website. You may want to do it, but it is unfamiliar, and too complicated for you to do.
If you have encountered these problems with learning how to use the Internet effectively, you are in need of help from others. Well, aside from asking for help from your friends or colleagues, you can seek assistance from the Internet itself. There are many places you can refer to when you are looking for information on any online product website: Wikipedia, Quora, or just Google. The free “products” on those websites is: information or answers to your questions. Wikipedia offers a basic history about a product; you can ask questions on Quora; and on Google you can search for everything.
Another example, YouTube is a Google product where you can enjoy almost all of the videos on the Internet. However, to fully enjoy the YouTube resources, you need to activate a Google account on YouTube. It is truly very easy for those who are familiar with the Internet, but for people who haven’t used YouTube or the Internet before, it’s really not that easy. In my opinion, you can just use Google: Type in Activate YouTube in the search box, and you will see useful search results listed, where you can find an explicit explanation about YouTube Activation.
Basic Tip #Three: Learn How To Make Full Use Of A Search Engine (Google)
In Tip Two above, I have made an example of making use of Google. Actually it’s not enough. Google can offer you much more than that. It is so regretful if you still have no idea how to make full use of a Search Engine as good as Google. Here I’d like to give some examples of Google Advanced Search.
Filetype: Use Google filetye function to command Google to search specific type of files for you. For instance, you want to find a resume sample for the industry of IT Engineer in the format of PDF, so you can type “filetype:pdf IT Engineer Resume” into the search box. Then, you will be presented with all the relative files in PDF format.
Site: Google site function is a command asking Google to search a specific site for you. Enter “site:nba.com Lebron James” into the Google search box, and you can see all the search results about Lebron James in www.nba.com, the official website of the NBA.
Intitle: Intitle function is a good tool for you to search all the Web Pages with specific keywords in their titles. Just input “intitle:Apple”, then Google will present you with all the search results with Apple in their titles.
Basically these functions are enough for common use, but Google Advanced Search has many more options in store for you.
Basic Tip #Four: Have Good Management Of Your Online Accounts
Although there is news that Google is doing research on having no password accounts, technology for online accounts is not so advanced yet, and you still have to create accounts for different websites, which can be very annoying.
The thought keeps emerging in the back of mind that one of my old relatives, who has reached his 60’s, got into a panic when he was faced with the reality that he had to register so many accounts for so many different kinds of websites. As for us, who have known the Internet from a young age, we may not find it to be a problem. However, we do forget about some accounts, or passwords, just because there are too many of them, and we are not using all of them every single day.
So, how should we deal with it? I told my older relative the best way to manage his accounts to make him worry less. Well, I told him to create a unique User Name for all the accounts, as well as a single phone number, and a single email address. As for the password, I advised him to think of something simple which applies to all the accounts. For example, a fixed series of numbers followed by some letters abbreviated for the website names, so you don’t have to remember all the accounts.
For those accounts very significant, and sensitive, like an online bank account, I advise you to set passwords that are very strong, write them down, and find some secure place to hide it. Since we all have smart phones, tablets, or laptops today, we can download a password management APP.
Basic Tip #Five: Prevent Yourself From Having Internet Addiction
Although I am writing an article about using the Internet here, I must remind you that the Internet is not everything in our life. Ever since the emergence of smart phones, we have become accustomed to spending too much time on the Internet. Instead of sitting in front of computers, or focusing your eyes on smart phones, playing games, and browsing Instagram, you’ve got many other meaningful things you can do, such as meeting your friends, reading books, taking your children to a park, playing basketball, taking your spouse on a date night, etc. It is OK to spare some time for the Internet daily, because we need to, but we don’t have to spend all day on it, which can be a total waste of time.
If you want to make the most of the Internet, you need to stop being on it all day long, and make full use of it in the most effective way.
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