IN THE NEWS: Class Helps Residents Stay Up to Date on Tablets, Smartphones

Mort Mazor, Special Correspondent to the Sun Sentinel

Sun Sentinel

Nov 5, 2012

In the world of computer and phone technology, constant transformation is the rule, not the exception.

To help locals keep up, the Computer Learning Center recently led a tablet and smartphone workshop at the Weisman Delray Community Center.

"The laptop computer provided portability, so you weren't chained to your desk by your desktop computer," said Fred Perry, one of the instructors. "Your laptop now becomes obsolete with the advent of the tablet, which provides lighter-weight portability. Internet access has gone from the modem on your desktop to the Cloud, providing wireless access to the Internet for smartphones and tablets from anywhere."

Among the more popular Cloud (online network) storage sites covered in the session were Microsoft Skydrive, Box, Google Drive and Apple iCloud.

The Chromebook tablet is a favorite of Perry's. It's a Cloud-driven laptop replacement centered on Google's Chrome Browser.

Tablet and smartphone operating systems were reviewed by Ed Ostrowski, including the Apple iOS 6 and Android's two most recent versions: 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and 4.1 Jelly Bean.

"A password should always be used with all these items," Ostrowski said. "Apple iPhone has a singular feature. To protect your personal data if it's lost or stolen, all your data will be erased if the wrong pass code is punched in five consecutive times."

"A password should always be used with all these items," Ostrowski said. "Apple iPhone has a singular feature. To protect your personal data if it's lost or stolen, all your data will be erased if the wrong pass code is punched in five consecutive times."

He said the Ice Cream Sandwich has new widgets and major photo improvements, like a built-in camera with zero shutter lag and advanced photo editing capability.

In addition, "It lets you unlock your phone with your face," he said. "Android learned people were holding up a photograph of the person who owned the unit and gaining access. They corrected that. The owner now has to wink into the camera to access his phone."

Lynn Thompson and Olive Ricci explained the latest versions of Apple iPads and book readers Amazon Kindle Fire HD, Nook HD and Nook HD+. The process of adding books from the Palm Beach County Library to your Kindle or Nook and installing and using iPad apps were demonstrated, followed by individual help with each student's device.

"I found this class very informative," said Ellen Romm, of Delray Beach. "It has helped me learn more about using my Kindle Fire. I definitely recommend it."

The workshop will next be offered from 2 to 4 p.m. Nov. 9. The Weisman center is at 7091 W. Atlantic Ave., west of Delray Beach.

For more information, call 561-880-5506 or visit Clcbb.org.

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