Apologies – this offer has expired and is no longer available
“The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same”
So said Jean‑Baptiste Alphonse Karr, a French newspaper editor, back in 1849.
It’s hard to argue with, even after 167 years.
And having tinkered with computers for the last thirty odd years, I think it definitely applies to PCs. For example…
The more things change…
I first wrote “Next Steps on your PC” and “Next Steps on the Internet” nine years ago, to follow on from the “One Step at a Time” books. They answer all the questions about PCs that people always ask me – how to do the things people actually want to do on their computers.
I’ve updated the books several times since, as Windows 7 and then Windows 8 came out. But not just to cover the new way Windows works. Other things have changed, too…
For example, when I first wrote the books something called Skype was catching on – because people liked using it for free phone calls. But now it’s used for video phone calls – just like I used to see in Star Trek when I was little!
In fact over a third of international phone calls are now made using Skype.
That’s not the only big change, either. Windows 10 is very different – and although it’s better in a lot of ways, if you’d got used to how to do things on the old versions of Windows, it can be tricky to re‑learn everything.
Lots of the things you want to do on your PC have changed. From handling photos on your PC to how to run older programs. From listening to music to typing up a letter.
Printing web pages out, handling emails and email attachments and what you can do online are very different as well. So I’ve made sure all that is properly covered in the books.
And there are things that aren’t so much changed as they’re new or have caught on – things like paying your TV licence or car tax online, or paying for postage for a parcel to save a trip to the post office – just things people didn’t tend to do when I first wrote the books.
So when I came to update the Next Steps books again to make sure they covered Windows 10 as well as 8 and 7, I thought I should really change a few other bits. As I looked through the book, a few bits changed into several – and ended up being lots. Lots of the pages were completely re‑written and nearly all the others had tweaks here and there.
In fact there was so much to re‑do I even drafted in my wife (Hi Julie) to help. She’s a editor by profession (that’s how we first met), so she knows what she’s doing – and having her helping meant I could get everything I wanted done on the books, even though it meant changing a lot.
…the more things stay the same
But not everything has changed about computers. For one thing, they still seem to be created by techies who want to prove how clever they are – often by making things confusing for you.
Really useful features that aren’t that hard to use are still given confusing names and hidden away to make it seem harder than it really is.
And it’s still usually really badly explained, in complicated jargon (in fact the jargon keeps expanding… and changing!).
And that’s why there were some things I didn’t change about the books. For example:
- They’re still written in nice plain English, with no complicated jargon to confuse you.
(Though I explain some of the jargon words in case you hear them elsewhere.)
- Everything’s still explained simply, step by step, so you don’t have to already know lots.
- There are still lots of pictures of the screen, with arrows showing you where to point the mouse and where to click.
- I also kept in some useful information that hasn’t changed – if it’s still useful, I left it in there.
One more thing hasn’t changed – these books are really useful (98.6% of 2000 people who rated the old books gave them 4 or 5 out of 5! In fact only 3 people gave them less than 3 out of five.)
Here are just a few of the things you’ll discover in the newly updated version of these books…
- The 2nd best improvement to PCs ever – and it’s “opposite” (and yes, I’ll mention the best one, too.) Page 4
- My trick for when I’m using a program I don’t know very well. (This often means I can help someone who actually knows the program better than I do!) It also helps in programs you know a bit about – but not all. Page 1‑3
- What if an old program won’t run on your new PC? Some people say that’s just tough luck. Not me, though. Page 62
- Very basic photo editing, including how to fix the problem I have with Alastair all the time (how to fix the problem I have with photos of him, I mean). Page 39.
- You probably don’t print as much as I do – but this tip has saved me hundreds of pounds on printer cartridges (and it’s nothing to do with re‑filling, using cheaper compatible ones or anything like that – much simpler and easier). Page 67
And there’s more in Next Steps on the Internet
- Speeding up your internet connection. Page 1
- Using wifi when you’re not at home. Everyone who uses a laptop or tablet at a cafe, pub or hotel should read this. Page 2
- Windows now comes with the new Mail App for emails. Page 3 has a list of the things it can’t do that older versions could. That’s progress, apparently! But you’ll also find out how to get around the problems.
- How to tell at a glance if a website is secure. Page 13
- If you want to share photos with friends around the world (or even in this country), this is how I’d do it. Page 36
- Listening to music and watching TV online… whilst staying on the right side of the law. Page 40‑45
That’s not all, of course – there’s lot of other useful things, all explained nice and simply in plain language.
I used to refer to the previous versions of these books as “The 63 PC questions I get asked all the time – answered”. But now, I’ve added even more things that customers have asked me about – that I know lots of people want to know about.
By now you may be wondering, if I’ve added all this new information, has the price gone up? In a word, no. I’ve kept the price down. The books still cost the same as when I first published the very first edition back in 2007. (What else can you say that about?)
Each book is
£12.97 (P&P is £2.99 per order) Update: during the clearance each book is now £6.98 – but once they’re gone, that’s it. For that you get all the help, advice and tips in the book – that makes everything easier and means you can get more from your computer.
What if you don’t have Windows 10?
We’ve also updated the old versions to add in other things that are new, but still covering Windows 8, 7 and Vista. So if you don’t have Windows 10 and don’t intend to get it, you can still get a version of the books suitable for you.
There’s one more thing you should know…
Some of the things you can do on a PC (such as putting records onto CD or using your PC to help you get organised) need extra software. You can download programs from the internet – but then you need to hunt around to get the best one and be sure you’re getting it from a safe place.
So I’ve arranged for you to get a CD containing some useful programs, free with Next Steps on Your PC. Even better, the book explains how to use them!
Free gift – useful if you ever use a mouse
But that’s not all. If you order both books, you’ll also get a free copy of What you should know about your Mouse.
In fact, it’s a booklet I’ve given the wrong name to. It doesn’t just cover mice – it covers touchpads (the little rectangular pads in front of the keyboard on most laptops) and touch screens, where you control the PC by touching the screen. These are becoming more and more popular, especially on laptops, so it’s worth knowing a bit about how to properly use them!
Seven of the many things you’ll discover in this 24 page booklet
- The hidden cause of trouble with double clicking – and what to do about it – page 7
- Another common mouse problem – page 8
- If you ever have trouble spotting where the mouse is on a crowded screen, these 3 tips will sort it out for you – page 9
- Three uses for the scrolling wheel on a mouse. Most people know the first one, hardly anyone knows the other two – page 13
- The wheel on most mice is actually a button as well – two ways to use it (and what to do if your mouse doesn’t have one) – page 14
- The first thing I’d say to anyone with a laptop. Before I even explain how to use that fancy touchpad… – page 15
- Ever felt like “gesturing” at your computer? Well, now you can, but it’s not what you might think… page 18
But the only way to get this booklet is by ordering the new editions of both Next Steps on your PC and Next Steps on the Internet.
Free trial – don’t pay now (wait until you know you’re happy with the books)
You don’t have to pay now. Just click the button below or ring 01229 777606 and we’ll send them off to you, along with your free copy of What You Should Know about Your Mouse if you have asked for both the PC and the internet book. Once you’ve got them, have a look and check you’re happy with them – if you are, you can pay then, if not, send them back and pay nothing.
Oh, and you can keep What You Should Know about your Mouse as a thank you for having a look, so you really do have nothing to lose.
PS Don’t forget you get What You Should Know about your Mouse free if you have a free trial of both books… and you can keep it whatever you decide about the two books.