Author Archive

New Apple titles from In Easy Steps

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

AppleSlideNov2015_small

Did you get one of Apple’s latest devices for Christmas?

  • iPhone 6s
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPad
  • iPad Mini
  • iPad Pro
  • iMac
  • MacBook
  • MacBook Pro
  • MacBook Air
  • Mac Mini
  • Mac Pro

Look no further for the perfect guide to help you get to grips with it quickly! Our popular range of titles is being updated to cover iOS 9 (the latest operating system for iPads and iPhones) and OS X El Capitan (the operating system for Macs). You can find a link to download the first chapter and the table of contents by clicking on the images below:

9781840786941This best-selling title covers all models of iPad with iOS 9, including iPad Mini and iPad Pro. It walks you through all the basics to get you started, then shows you how to make the most of your iPad. Presented in larger type for easier reading.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9781840786934The second edition of this popular Seniors guide gives you all the information you need to get up and running with your new iPhone 6s or 6sPlus, and quickly feel you are in control of it. In full colour and straightforward, jargon-free language, and presented in larger type for easier reading.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9781840787061Now into its 7th edition, this title is being updated to cover iOS 9. All models of iPad with iOS 9 are catered for, including iPad Mini and iPad Pro.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9781840786958_webWhichever version of Mac you’re using, this book will guide you through the basics, like using the Dock and the Finder, and will then help you master the essentials so you can get the most out of your Mac, whether you’re new to Mac computing or upgrading from an older version of OS X.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9781840787078_webGet up and running with your new iPhone 6s or 6s Plus without any fuss. Set it up so it works how you like it, and learn how to use its exciting features so that you can make the most of the latest Apple smartphone.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Save Money with Kobo!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Did you know, Kobo offers a price match on eBooks?

Hot-Tip-New_croppedIf you buy an eBook from Kobo and find the same title (with the same ISBN) from another online retailer, you can get Kobo to credit you the difference, with 10% added of the original purchase price! Many, if not most customers are unaware of this deal, but it’s well worth checking out if you are an avid eBook user!

Simply file a claim within 7 days of purchase, and if the details match and are available in the same country – i.e you cannot buy something from the UK store and claim because the US site is cheaper – then you can qualify for Kobo’s Price Match Guarantee!

This offer applies to customers in the US, Australia, New Zealand, and the UK.

To access it:

  1. Go to kobo.com, locate the specified title and click through to the individual title page
  2. Click Price Match Guarantee (this link is available on all individual eBook title pages)
  3. From the Price Match Guarantee page, click Start Your Requestkobo
  4. Fill in your details on the Request Form, including your receipt number (found in the email received from Kobo after the original purchase
  5. Enter the URL and the price of the lower price title under Competitor Information
  6. Click Submit

And that’s it! Kobo will then verify the lower priced title and reply within 3 working days. If your request is valid, your Kobo account will be credited the amount equal to the price difference, with an added 10% of your original purchase price. A great tip to help you save the pennies, and possibly the pounds (or cents and dollars depending on your location), after the festive season!

You can find our In Easy Steps eBooks on Kobo, visit kobo.com find out more!

A quick look back, and onwards to 2016!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

And that was 2015!

We’ve had a great year here at In Easy Steps!W10 books

With our completed Windows 10 series, learners from all ages, backgrounds and abilities can master the new operating system. Whether you’re a beginner to Windows, or upgrading your PC or Laptop, our guides offer users fantastic knowledge and behind the scenes information to truly make your device your own.

9781840786491 Android Tablets for Seniors in easy steps 9781840786491Android Tablets for Seniors in easy steps, 2nd edition is still going strong after its Summer release, ideal for any ‘silver surfers’ getting to grips with the new digital landscape, and Android operating system.

Our popular title Agile Project Management in easy steps, 2nd edition, can help many business managers on the path to success, alongside Online Marketing for Small Business in easy steps, which is great for any up and coming companies and the self-employed who want to get ahead of the game with marketing and social media.

 

The Apple iOS 9 titles  help you quickly get to grips with your iPads and iPhones, and also whether you’ve upgraded your Mac to OS X El Capitan or not, 2015 gave you the titles you wanted; MacBook in easy steps, 4th Edition and Mac Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts in easy steps – covering OS X Yosemite, and for the new system update, OS X El Capitan in easy steps.

Finally, we added a complete beginner’s guide to programming to our popular range of programming books, Coding for Beginners in easy steps, for those wanting to learn to program from scratch and for kids!

2016

And with 2016 just round the corner, what more is there to do than look forward to our exciting upcoming titles! Here are just a selection of new titles we have coming in 2016, available in paperback and eBook formats:

iPhone in easy steps, 6th Ed iOS 9 9781840787078The final installment of our iOS 9 series, iPhone in easy steps will be released, completing the set. An ideal accompaniment to any new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus users, this title is not to be missed!

We’ll be bringing you Visual Basic in easy steps, 4th edition; a great companion to any web developer who wants to quickly get to grips with creating Windows apps, in the Visual Basic 2015 programming environment.

Also, PHP 7 in easy steps will be released, covering key aspects of the language; installing a free web server and PHP interpreter, helping you produce professional web programming results, code server-side scripts and all the basics including variables, arrays, logic, looping, functions and classes.

 

Another one for the computer hobbyists , Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps will take you through the best parts of Scratch Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps 9781840787146Programming, giving you great ideas and code for creating new games and programs, right at your fingertips!

For the artistic reader, we’ll have Photoshop Elements 14 Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts in easy steps, ideal for anyone with an interest in photo enhancing and design. A comprehensive guide covering everything from software set up to advanced secrets to expand your editing exploits.

Office 2016, Excel 2016 and Word 2016 are on the horizon, to help you fully utilise your PC or laptop, and get the best out of Microsoft’s popular programs. Using detailed images and step by step instructions, in the trusted In Easy Steps style, you’ll reach pro-level quickly and easily. There are so many tips and shortcuts packed in; you’ll wonder how you managed before!

 

Follow the links to see more information, as we get it, on the titles you want in 2016!

Festive treats for Android Users!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Twas the night before Christmas, smartphone in hand. A shiny new app? Well that would be grand!

 

If you’re an android user, keen to give Google Play Music a go, or if you just want to see what the music streaming buzz is all about, head to Google Play now!

Google Play logoGoogle is offering a three-month subscription to their music service for the holidays, for only one dollar! If you know someone who’s switching to android, or who’s receiving a shiny new android phone then this is the deal for them. Unfortunately only for new subscribers, the subscription comes with YouTube Red, for ad-free videos and background playback. Head over to Google Play to make sure your location is included, as the $1 deal is accessible only in certain countries!

Added to this offer, is the opportunity to get 75% off a movie rental, 50% off one album of your choice, and many other great deals including sales on games, books and apps! There’s no catches on the half price album, which covers the US, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, France, Japan, Mexico, Russia, the UK and all genres from Classical to Metal! Be sure to take advantage before the 4th January 2016!android_vector

Also in Android news, Vodafone is offering Wifi-Calling to Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge users in the UK, so now if you have limited mobile signal, there’s no problem as the function can be done over Wifi! No doubt this great addition will continue to be rolled out gradually to other networks, but if you’re a Vodafone android user, text CALLING to 97888 to be opted in. Some handsets already have this feature enabled, so head over to EE for more information.

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

 

To find out all the festive treats from Google Play:

 

  • Click here for Music
  • Click here for Movies and here for TV
  • Click here for Books
  • Click here for Games

…and why not check out our great selection of Android titles, all In Easy Steps!

 

 

Windows 10 titles from In Easy Steps

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Windows 10 is one of the most significant upgrades in Microsoft’s history and we have a comprehensive range of titles to help you get to grips with it. Here’s the full range of In Easy Steps Windows 10 titles – click on the images below for more details:

 

First off, our standard title:

9781840786439_webGuiding you through installing and setting up Windows 10, migrating settings from your current version of Windows if you’re already using a Windows PC, this 240-page book will show you all the basics you need to know to find your way around Windows 10 quickly.

We worked hard to get this title to you as soon as possible after the final version of Windows 10 was released on 29th July, and it does cover that final version (we didn’t go to print until after the final version was released, so everything could be checked).

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Or, there’s our quick-start guide:

9781840786842This 104-page, pocket-size book covers all the basics and will help you hit the ground running once you’ve installed Windows 10.

Available now!

£5.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Special Edition helps you to venture further into Windows 10. 480 pages, covering everything from the basics of how to install and set up Windows 10, and then guides you through the more advanced features:

If you’re after a comprehensive guide that covers advanced features in Windows 10 – then this is the book for you.
Also ideal for those who have mastered the fundamentals covered in Windows 10 in easy steps and Windows 10 for Seniors in easy steps and who want to explore more of Windows 10.

Available now!

£16.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The popular Seniors title is also available now, too.

Written with older readers in mind, and in larger type for easier reading, this 240-page book is full of tips and shortcuts to help you get the most out of Windows 10, whatever your level of experience and whichever type of PC system you’re using.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For those Seniors thinking about getting a Windows 10 laptop, and those upgrading, this new title will help with choosing and using one:

Again, written in larger type for easier reading, this book shows how laptops are ideal for Seniors and, as well as explaining the essential computer jargon, will help you explore the exciting features of Windows 10 on a laptop.

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once you’ve mastered Windows 10, and you’re ready to find out what else you can do, this book will teach you all the clever tricks and shortcuts you can use which will make using it faster and more productive.

Over 1000 tips, tweaks and secrets to help you get the most out of Windows 10.

A great Christmas gift for your Windows 10-using friends and family, too!

Available now!

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We hope you’re having a good experience using Windows 10!

 

Star Wars themed tips for your Tech!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

With the UK release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in cinema’s today, we’ve rounded-up the best force-themed tricks to get involved in possibly the most anticipated event – and sequel – of the year!

First up, for those who unfortunately did not manage to get their hands on release-day tickets; Google’s Chrome extension, Force Block.
This nifty little add on with help warn you off any ‘spoiler alert’ content which could ruin your eventual viewing of the blockbuster title. Download and enable Force Block, and from there you can tailor the browser to filter any content you don’t want to see. You can even specify pages not to block, so even though this page features ‘Star Wars’ related content, you can rest assured you won’t miss out, or stumble upon any film related reveals! Formed using pattern matching logic, a recent update has added a ‘handful of instant-blocking keyphrases, sourced from people who have seen the film via early screenings’ so Google’s really pulled out all the stops to not ruin your own cinema experience.

Head to the Chrome Web Store for more information, and to add the extension to your Chrome page!

Don't-Forget-New

 

Other browsers are available, but be warned, you might stumble upon the dark side!

star wars

 

Another fun trick from Google, you can now turn your smartphone into a lightsaber in their desktop browser game! Get into the swing of things with the next best thing to a real lightsaber; a program which turns your smartphone into the ultimate weapon of choice, and defeat bad guys on your screen! Lightsaber Escape is up and running, just click the link to open in your desktop browser (yes, other browsers work too!), type in the unique URL on your phone (or vice versa) and you’re all set. Your phone becomes the handle, with a striking beam of neon ready for your Jedi moves.

From Google and Lucasfilm, as well as the Star Wars visual effects studio, Lightsaber Escape is a Chrome experiment using WebGL (3D Graphics) and WebRTC and WebSocket (real-time communication between devices). Beware though, there may be some issues with compatibility in handling the true awesome-ness of the Lightsaber, such as connection speed.

 

And finally, what seems to have become a regular occurrence on social media giant Facebook, you can now change your profile picture to support the Star Wars cause. There are two designs, a light side and a dark side (blue and red lightsabers, of course) which fit neatly on top of your existing photo – or another one of your choice. If you haven’t already seen the feature, just head over to Facebook and you’re sure to find a friend who has already chosen a side. Click their image and the ‘Use Frame’ button to follow the paths of new hero Finn, or the baddie you love to hate, Kylo Ren. Alternatively, go to the official Star Wars film Facebook page, click a character poster i.e. Finn or Kylo Ren and click ‘Try it’. The tool is easy to use, lets you preview the final image and you can set a timer for how long you want the effect to last. It’s like you’re right there in the film … almost.

Stay tuned for more updates on recent tech, in easy steps!

Twitter launches Moments in the UK

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

Twitter’s new Moments feature has officially launched in the UK, a few months after its US launch.

Appearing in both the browser and app versions, the feature highlights news events from around the world, allowing users to remain up-to-date on all the latest topics. There is now no need to endlessly search for a particular story, with content assembled from a top group of journalists and subject specialists; “The aim will be for us to represent that conversation in as diverse way as possible” stated EMEA Moments Lead, Jo Geary at the unveiling.

With the new feature, Twitter will combine prominent tweets surrounding news stories, to clean up the trend tabs currently on the platform. Access numerous categories and scroll through areas such as News, Sports and Entertainment. There will be a general selection called Today, with the most popular stories and relevant tweets from around the world.

In a step to reach mass market, alongside the ‘While you were away’ feature, Moments will hit timelines in the UK shortly – if not live already!
Click here for the official Twitter page, or check out the ‘Moments’ section on your timeline!

Apple News Round-up – Smart Battery Case, Apple Watch, iPhone 6c and iOS 9.2

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

Buzzing around the online sphere this week, a number of news stories and updates from Apple have been revealed. Covering their infamous iPhone, the Watch and their latest operating system, iOS 9, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know to stay ahead of the game!

Apple brings a Smart Battery Case with iOS integration:

iphone-smart-battery-caseAvailable on the Apple online store, and reviewed by a handful of web retailers, the Apple Smart Battery Case has been released. This gadget allows iPhone 6s users to extend their phone battery life, as well as increased cellular performance and iOS integration which helpfully shows the accessory’s current battery level. Unfortunately, the case does not charge a dead iPhone to 100% battery power, but its 1,877 mAh battery is a start!

Visually, the case has an extended charging section at the back and fits over your phone like a regular silicone case – only with an inner Lightning connector adapter. Functionally, there is no On/Off feature or indicator LED, so as soon as it is fitted, it begins charging discreetly until you remove the case. For Apple fans, at £79/$99 it might be a necessary addition to your Apple family. A handy device taking you further from your trusty mains charger, and somewhat helps with the well-known issue of smartphone battery life.

Next Generation Apple Watch event:

A rumoured event to take place in March 2016 could reveal the next-generation Apple Watch, reports 9to5Mac. With likely shipping around one month later in April, this would mark one year after the release of the first generation Apple watch in April 2015.

There have been numerous reports of the second-generation Apple Watch, which surfaced almost as soon as – if not before – the first was released, suggesting a new Wi-Fi chip to increase the Watch’s functionality without an iPhone connection. Due to issues surrounding performance on health-related features, improved technology could see conservative updates in the health field such as sensors measuring blood pressure, oxygen levels and skin conductivity. Other rumoured features include a new FaceTime call function with a front-facing camera.

Possible iPhone 6c to be confirmed:

Following the Apple Watch news, there is speculation a new iPhone 6c could be revealed at the March 2016 event, which would bring a more affordable, 4inch iPhone similar to the iPhone 5c. This next-generation phone is rumoured to house an A8 or A9 processor (found in the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus), Apple Pay and Touch ID, all contained in an aluminium case.

iOS 9.2 update released to the public:

The second major update to iOS 9 has been released to the public, after testing through developers and public beta testers since October. Available to all iOS 9 users as an over-the-air update, iOS 9 actually comes as the fourth update, following iOS 9.0.1, 9.0.2 and 9.1.

As with usual large updates, iOS 9.2 covers varied bug fixes and support improvements, as well as additional features within apps:

  • Apple Music improvements, including the ability to create a new playlist when adding a song to a playlist; a new download indicator next to songs which have been downloaded in My Music and Playlists; additional artist information viewable while browsing Classical music in the Apple Music catalogue; and order priority for your most recently changed playlist so this is at the top when songs are added
  • iBooks improvements, including the ability to listen to an audiobook while you browse your library, access other books or browse the iBooks store; and support for 3D Touch to peek and pop pages from the Table of Contents, your Notes and Bookmarks, or search results inside the book
  • Top Stories section in the News app (available in US, UK and AUS)
  • Mail Drop feature in Mail to send large attachments
  • Safari stability improvements
  • Podcasts stability improvements
  • Activity app stability improvements
  • Health data improvements
  • Wallet updates and Lock screen alerts improvements
  • Accessibility improvements, including VoiceOver updates, Guided Access updates, Switch Control functionality and Speak Screen speech rates
  • iOS installation improvements concerning alarms – previous updates could prevent an alarm going off
  • Quick Reply keyboard improvements
  • Punctuation input improvements on the Chinese 10-key keyboards
  • Cyrillic keyboard caps lock fixes
  • Mail attachment fixes
  • Contact search fixes where an issue could cause the search to display no results
  • Calendar fixes where an issue prevented Calendar from displaying all seven days in week view
  • iPad camera screen fixes when capturing video, and iPad keyboard fixes triggering text selection mode
  • Find my iPhone login fixes
  • Manual iCloud backup fixes
  • Siri support for Arabic (SAU and UAE)
  • iPhone support for the USB camera Adapter to import photos and videos
  • AT&T’s NumberSync Wi-Fi calling support, allowing users to accept calls on any device even when their phone is not nearby
  • Safari View Controller developments while working with third-party apps (pop-up windows)


For the full list, head to Apple’s support page


Stay tuned for more Apple updates from In Easy Steps!

Stocking fillers from In Easy Steps

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

The Christmas period is fast approaching, and it can be increasingly difficult to put together all those extra little presents to open on Christmas morning. With technology and electrical devices being a strong contender on the wish-lists, we’ve got the perfect pocket sized accompaniments, at great prices too – all under £10!

  1. Get going with Windows 10 in easy steps

This is a great little addition to the computer operating system of the year, Windows 10. Ideal for anyone who wants to hit the ground running on a new Laptop or PC, Get going with Windows 10 in easy steps tells you all you need to know, covering the basics including OneDrive, the Edge browser, Classic and Universal Apps, Security, Personalisation and Settings. Full colour, pocket-sized and in the helpful In Easy Steps style, this is a steal at only £5.99!

 

 

  1. Clever Stuff you can do with your Digital Camera in easy steps

9781840785678 - Clever Stuff Digital CameraHave you bought a new camera, or know someone who might be receiving one soon? This title is full of clever techniques and easy steps to make your digital photos great, including controls and settings, using different modes to best suit the situation, and enhancing and framing pictures. Clever Stuff you can do with your Digital Camera in easy steps is compact, to the point, and key in developing your digital camera skills. Available now for only £5.99!

 

 

  1. Get going with hudl2 in easy steps

A brilliant guide to the popular tablet from Tesco, this title is not to be missed at only £5.99! Under a tenner, you can’t afford not to include it in your Christmas shopping! Featuring concise, quick-start steps to help you get the most out of your hudl2, this compact book contains 112 full colour pages and sits comfortably in your hand as well! The In Easy Steps guide covers keyboard functions, entertainment, photos, the web and safety, and so much more!

 

 

  1. Clever Stuff you can do Online to make and save money in easy steps

Do you know anyone who is new to the online world of commerce, or someone who would benefit from the tricks and tips to making and saving money? Well this is the book for them, including top tricks on selling unwanted items, being sale-savvy and saving money, and even getting free software! In the trusted In Easy Steps style, this clever little title is available now for £5.99.

 

 

 

  1. Get going with Kindle Fire in easy steps

An easy to follow tablet focussed guide, this book covers both the standard and HD versions of the well known Amazon device. The perfect partner to your Kindle Fire, quickly get up and running with the functionality of web surfing, viewing and sharing photos, watching films and TV. Highly integrated with the Amazon website, you can also download apps, music, books and store your content online! Ideal for an inexpensive stocking filler, Get going with Kindle Fire in easy steps is available now at £5.99!

 

 

For all of these titles, and best sellers covering Apple devices, Programming, Microsoft Office and more, visit our online shop now!

Adobe Illustrator updates – part 2

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

In our second installment of the Adobe Illustrator updates, we’ve had a look at the fresh mobile Adobe Capture CC app!

Adobe Capture CC app:

Capture CC is now mobile ready, allowing you to quickly capture, create and edit shapes, themes and custom brushes. Take a picture and save to your Creative Cloud Libraries, use a photo from your gallery or access images direct from Creative Cloud, and apply to other apps or projects with Adobe mobile.

To create a color theme from an image:Untitled

  1. Tap Colors, then the + icon
  2. Move the circles to alter each color swatch
  3. Freeze the screen by tapping it, and adjust the theme and move individual color circles
  4. Tap Capture, enter a name for your theme and choose the desired Creative Cloud Library
  5. Tap Save Color Theme

 

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

You can also convert a photo into a brush, create a unique Look for your video and enhance your art and design projects to further customise your creative projects!

 

Don't-Forget-New

This process follows Adobe Capture CC on an iPhone. The user interface may vary between iPhone, iPad, and Android devices.

 

 

For more information, visit Adobe, or check out our range of helpful titles, all In Easy Steps!

Adobe Illustrator updates – part 1

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

We’ve had a look at the new updates for Adobe Illustrator CC, unveiled at the Adobe MAX keynote in Los Angeles. Focussing on features to bring added speed and flexibility, here’s a taste of the Illustrator Shape tools!

Shape up with the Adobe Shaper tool:

Working with Illustrator workspaces and the Touch workspace, the Shaper tool allows you to draw natural objects and shapes, and then as if by magic, transforms them into precise and geometrically-perfect forms.  You can further edit, delete, combine and colour these shapes to create beautiful designs, with no need to change to selection tools or panels. Your designs also stay fully editable, so with the use of quick scrubbing gestures, they can easily be amended!

New Shape tools are now fully live, allowing you to swiftly create vector shapes including Ellipses, Polygons and Lines, without the use of additional panels or tools. These Illustrator Shape tools are interactive and adjustable, without having to apply other effects.

To turn objects or a complete photo into vector shapes:Shaper-for-Blog_small_square

  1. Tap Shapes, then the + icon
  2. Using the slider, adjust the contrast and tap Capture
  3. Tap to add or remove elements, alternating between Keep in shape and Remove from shape
  4. Tap Next and Capture will create your vector shape
  5. Tap Next to enter a name for your shape, choose the desired Creative Cloud Library and tap Save Shape

 

Don't-Forget-New

 

This process follows Adobe Capture CC on an iPhone. The user interface may vary between iPhone, iPad, and Android devices.

 

For more information, visit Adobe, or check out our range of helpful titles, all In Easy Steps!

The Raspberry Pi Zero

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

An In Easy Steps guide to the $5 computer, the Raspberry Pi Zero

From one of the best British homegrown computer manufacturers, comes the Raspberry Pi Zero. The $5 computer, available now in both the UK and the US, is the result of the company’s long standing and most important aim, to drive down the cost of computer hardware. This tiny piece of technology, small in both size and price is one huge step forward in bringing computer technology and programming knowledge to everyone.

Compared to the original Raspberry Pi Model B and its successors, priced around $20-$35, the new Raspberry Pi Zero comes in at a fraction of the price, and still secures its place as a fully-fledged member of the Raspberry Pi family.

Specifications include:

  • Broadcom BCM2835 application processor (1GHz ARM11 core – 40% faster than the Raspberry Pi 1)
  • 512MB of LPDDR2 SDRAM
  • Micro-SD card slot
  • Mini-HDMI socket for 1080p60 video output
  • Micro-USB sockets for data and power
  • Unpopulated 40-pin GPIO header (identical pinout to Model A+/B+/2B)
  • Unpopulated composite video header
  • Form factor of 65mm x 30mm x 5mm

Made in Wales, UK, the Raspberry Pi Zero runs Raspbian, and all of your favourite apps – Scratch, Minecraft and Sonic Pi to name a few. A full low-down is featured in the December issue of The MagPi, and you could also be in the running to win a FREE Raspberry Pi Zero with each copy!

For more information, visit https://www.raspberrypi.org/blog/raspberry-pi-zero/ or get your copy of Raspberry Pi in easy steps now!

More Shutdown Options In Easy Steps

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

More Shutdown Options

An extract from Windows 10 Tips, Tricks and Shortcuts in easy steps!

There are several ways to access a Windows 10 PC’s power off options. You can do so by clicking the Start button, then Power, or by right-clicking the Start button, then Shut down or sign out, or by clicking the Power button on the Lock screen.

Here is another way that provides Shut down, Switch user, Sign out, Sleep, and Restart options. Do it as follows:

  1. Type “notepad” into the Taskbar Search box then hit Enter – to open the Windows Notepad application
  2. In Notepad, precisely type the following:
    dim objShell
    set objShell = CreateObject(“shell.application”)
    objshell.ShutdownWindows
    set objShell = nothing
  3. From the file menu, click Save As and in the box enter a suitable name, e.g. “ShutDown”. Give it the .vbs file extension and save it to the desktop
  4. Double-click the ShutDown icon that now appears on the Desktop, to see a Shut Down Windows dialog box offering Windows 10 power off options:

Don't-Forget-New

 

 

This example creates a handy shut down script using the Visual Basic scripting language called “VBScript”.

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

 

 

You can drag your new ShutDown icon to the Taskbar where it can be quickly accessed.

Now available! Get Windows 10 Tips, Tricks and Shortcuts for the special launch price of £7.99, click here for more information.

A Quick Guide to the Festive Season – In Easy Steps!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Hello December!

The countdown has begun, it’s the 1st of December and there are only three more weeks to pack in all the decorations, present wrapping and family visits. Here’s our guide to the Festive Season, In Easy Steps!

  1. Have you discussed the plans for the big day itself? Home or away, it’s worthwhile planning travel arrangements, who is bringing what, and how many guests will be attending
  2. It’s now officially December, so it is acceptable to get the tree, Christmas songs, lights and general holiday decorations out and organised, to properly get in the festive spirit!
  3. Wrap up those gifts! Whether you are doing a Secret Santa, presents for the kids, or gestures of goodwill instead of another pair of socks, once they’re all ticked off and wrapped up, you’ll breath a sigh of relief. (Don’t forget to check out our Special Offers and Coming Soon titles!)
  4. Timing is everything, especially when it comes to the food prep. Make a list for when everything needs to be in the oven, or on the stove, and stick it on the fridge

 

 

Make sure to rope in any little helpers for the vegetable peeling!

 

 

Less is often more when it comes to decorations, so find a theme and stick to it!

 

Beware-New

 

Check the weather forecast! Although a white Christmas is often reserved for the movies (at least here in Britain!), it’s handy to know whether you might need your wellies or not!

 

Seasons Greetings!

From, the In Easy Steps team!

 

 

The low-down on the new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in Article, News

All the information on this months Apple Press event – iOS 9 and the brand new iPhones.

As the 9th September Apple press event nears, more and more news pieces and rumours are appearing surrounding the upcoming iPhone duo release, almost certainly due to be unveiled this month at the San Francisco show. As seen in previous years, Apple’s product cycles have given a September announcement and following handset and the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus are the next developments to the vast Apple range.

Following suit with the release cycle, Apple is thought to be implementing refreshed software, a faster processor and possible Force Touch technology, which can differentiate between a soft tap and a deep press, making the touch screen all the more intuitive. This would align with the alternating cycle of new hardware and software designs each year, and with the new iOS 9 software, the timing is perfect.

After inviting journalists to the September 9th event, through a fun and brand focussed ‘Hey Siri, give us a hint’, Siri kept quiet on the subject, giving coy responses likening the user to a kid at Christmas.

So what can you expect with the new iPhones?

A follow up to the September 2014 iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, the new couple to arrive this autumn are the iPhone 6s, and 6s Plus – unofficially known as the iPhone 7.

These new models will undoubtedly feature an enhanced battery life, Force Touch (as seen on the Apple Watch) and a possible 12 mega pixel camera, as well as a suggested 2GB of RAM in the A9 processor. Higher screen resolution is pretty much a given, as well as – unfortunately – a higher price.

The 6s Plus will of course be bigger, and most likely more powerful. The included iOS 9 operating system will bring a more intelligent Siri and redesigned built-in apps, improved stability and Apple Pay Touch ID functionality. Build-wise; reports suggest perhaps either a Liquidmetal body or use of a stronger Series 7000 aluminium alloy to stave off any mishaps similar to 2014’s ‘bend-gate’ saga. The aesthetic design and screen size of the iPhone 6s is likely to remain close to the iPhone 6, with some colour variances and minute change in thickness.

These handsets – or at least the iPhone 6s – should be available around mid-September, with many tech websites stating September 18th. Keep your eyes peeled, as Apple may be releasing a new iPad too!

Coming soon….

You can find out all you need to know about iOS 9 with our upcoming titles – all in easy steps! Click herefor more information!

How to obtain Windows 10 for free

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in Article

After the exciting news of the upcoming Windows 10 release, made even better by the fact it is free to all qualifying Windows 7 and 8 users, we’ve looked into the actual upgrade process after July 29th.

As How to obtain Windows 10 - in easy stepsmentioned above, as long as you register within one year of the July 29th release of Windows 10, Microsoft will let you have the upgrade for free. There are a few things to watch out for though, particularly one phrase stating the upgrade is for the “supported lifetime of the device”. It’s quite unclear what this means and as yet, Microsoft have not clarified. Also, your computer will need to be capable of running Windows 10, the main specifications being: 1GHz processor, 1GB RAM (32-bit Windows) or 2GB RAM (64-bit Windows), and 16GB of free disk space.

For those considering a new PC or Laptop; if you upgrade to Windows 10 from a previous retail version, you can then install the updated system to a new computer! The old version will need to be removed, but this is great news if you were considering buying a pre-installed Windows 10 device.

Another point to bear in mind is the type of Windows licence you have. It will be the same once the upgrade has been completed, so if you have changed any major components the software may need reactivating.

All will surely be elaborated come launch day though!

How to upgrade:

  1. Your computer will need to be on the latest version its current operating system before the upgrade. This can be checked through Windows Update. Once updated to either Windows 7SP1 or Windows 8.1, a Windows tile icon should appear in the notification area of the desktop – this may have already appeared if your PC is up to date.
  2. Click the Windows tile icon to begin the Get Windows 10 app. Here you can check your device complies with the Windows 10 requirements by clicking the Menu button (top-left of the screen, three horizontal lines) and then Check My PC. Don’t worry, if you need to update anything or clear some space, the app will notify you accordingly.
  3. Reserve your upgrade: Click Menu and then Reserve to secure your free copy of Windows 10. You can view confirmation in the Menu, and you will be notified when Windows 10 has downloaded. Once ready, you will then be able to install an in-place upgrade of your operating system to complete the upgrade to Windows 10. From here, you can then transfer the upgrade to a new device (a clean install) from an ISO by Microsoft, using a DVD or USB flash drive.
And that’s it!

Remember, you have one year from July 29th to complete this installation so make sure to claim yours! Your upgrade will depend on the system you have, which can be determined below:

Windows 7 Starter  →  Windows 10 Home

Windows 7 Home Basic  →  Windows 10 Home

Windows 7 Home Premium  →  Windows 10 Home

Windows 7 Professional → Windows 10 Pro

Windows 7 Ultimate  →  Windows 10 Pro

Windows 8  →  Windows 10 Home

Windows 8 Pro  →  Windows 10 Pro

Windows 8.1  →  Windows 10 Home

Windows 8.1 Pro →  Windows 10 Pro

 

For further information on Windows 10, why not have a look at our upcoming series including:

Windows 10 in easy steps and Get going with Windows 10 in easy steps – both due August 2015.

How to Maintain your Mac

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in Article

Adapted from Mac Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts in easy steps by Drew Provan

Macs do not need much looking after, although in the past we were advised to defragment our hard drives and carry out other household cleaning tasks. Now with OS X there is little that needs doing on a regular basis!

Maintenance worth carrying out:

  • Clear Safari history and caches
  • Clearing cookies from Safari and other browsers
  • Clearing old logs and User cache folder

Automate the Cleaning!

There are several apps that can clear out all of the unwanted files. Some are free and others are paid apps.

Three useful maintenance apps:

CCleaner is a very simple app, ported over from Windows. It carries out a very limited range of cleaning functions and does not clean out the User cache. It does, however, deal with the internet debris and temporary browser files pretty well. OnyX and MainMenu are more powerful than CCleaner but perform similar functions.

 

 

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-01 at 16

Defragmenting your Drive

Hard drives can become fragmented over time. This is because, as the drives fill up, there is no space to write large files so they end up being split into several parts across the drive. When you open the file, the Mac has to look around for all the pieces and join these in order to open the file.

Note: There is no defragmentation app built into OS X (unlike Windows which includes an app to defragment your drive)

iDefrag

There are several apps available for defragmenting drives running OS X. iDefrag (http://www.coriolis-systems.com/iDefrag.php) is probably the best.

 

Beware-New

 

Never defragment an SSD drive. They have a finite number of read/writes and the drive will fail faster if you defrag!

 

 

Clear the Desktop!

The Mac has to keep track of many items and the Desktop is one of them. The more files and folders you have on the Desktop, the harder the Mac has to work to keep track of all these files. With the speed increases seen with newer Macs you may not notice the slowdown so much, but it is good practice to keep your Desktop as clear as you can.

  1. Regularly file your documents in the Documents folder (create sub-folders within the Documents folder)
  2. If you must keep some items on the Desktop, consider creating a folder on the Desktop and dropping them into that
  3. Try creating aliases for frequently accessed folders

Find out more great Mac ideas in Mac Tips, Tricks & Shortcuts in easy steps, by Drew Provan or visit us at www.ineasysteps.com!

Apple Tech Update – iOS 8.4

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

ios 8.4

Apple Tech Update – Apple Music, Audio Books and iOS bug fixes

The latest iOS firmware update – 8.4 – has just been released.

With the unveiling of Apple Music, now available to download through iOS 8.4, Apple has also made some vital bug fixes surrounding the watch, GPS systems and iBooks.

Apple’s new music streaming offering is generally receiving good reviews, being relatively easy to set up, it contains five different options of music indulgence to discover (For You, New, Radio, Connect and My Music). There are more comprehensive search facilities and tailor-made playlists based on the music you like to hear (check out our previous article to get the full down-low!). Like many others, we’ll wait and see how it performs against streaming giant Spotify once the three month trial ends.

Next on the roll-out is a key fix for the Apple watch, which has been updated to solve the issue of apps reinstalling after they had been deleted. GPS location services have also been improved helping devices and accessories provide fixed location data.

Finally, the update to iOS 8 includes an enhanced audio books feature. Apple has now made iBooks more intuitive, letting users browse, sample and download audio books all in one app. Previously, audio books were based within iTunes, which made it difficult to locate the downloads and sync with other devices. With iOS 8.4, everything is within iBooks, which also includes a newly designed ‘Now Playing’ feature specific to audio books, and a sleep timer. Audio books are also now filed alongside your eBooks and PDF documents, which will make it a lot easier accessing and reading your favourite In Easy Steps titles on your iPad or iPhone!

Will you be trying out Apple Music? Are you an Android fan or loyal to Apple?

Comment below – we’d love to hear your thoughts!

For all the info on iOS 8, go to https://www.apple.com/uk/ios/whats-new/

Apple Music, the new streaming service to rival Spotify?

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in Article

You may have noticed the term Apple Music in the media recently, due to some top musicians – most notably Taylor Swift – challenging the big guys at Apple to rightfully pay for the music they are selling, but what actually is it?

Apple Music is touted to be the Spotify of the Apple world. At WWDC 2015 Apple unveiled the new service; a mix of Beats Music and iTunes, with a 24-hour live radio broadcast, personalised playlists, recommendations and the whole vault of iTunes music ready and waiting for your listening pleasure. From BBC Radio 1 fame DJ Zane Lowe will headline station Beats 1, alongside a selection of expertly curated stations from world renowned DJ’s and artists. There will be industry insights, knowledge, news and reviews encompassing the whole music world.

Starting from the first setup, the technology behind Apple Music personally curates – Apple Music is all about ‘curating’ – results and suggestions from what you initially search, and over time learns all about all your likes and dislikes. There are innovative playlists curated by a worldwide team, which constantly update and change throughout the day so you’ll never listen to the same list of songs, unless you want to.

One of the top features of Apple Music is Connect. Here artists can post an array of exclusive media, behind the scenes photos, videos, unreleased demos, or stripped back versions of a favourite track, all at the mercy of their dedicated fan base. Apple Music’s own social-media hub if you like. You can view, comment, like, favourite and share all this exciting content, right at your fingertips.

In terms of membership, there are two main profiles once you have passed the three month free trial. Single membership, which is pretty self explanatory and family membership, which allows up to six people unlimited access on their devices. Both will have a price attached, but with membership your whole music library is in iCloud, so very little space is taken up on your devices.

Once released and all devices are up to date, Apple Music can be accessed (to a certain degree) on iPhones, iPads, iPod touch, the Watch, Macs, PCs and even Android in the near future. The great thing about Apple Music is that all of your music will be in one place regardless of where it came from. Tell Siri to play the greatest hits of the 80’s, or add a song to your favourite playlist and she will. There’s even a feature for offline use!

So there you have it. Apple Music. Coming soon to a device near you. Now with fully paid artists, labels and publishers alike.

Find out more at http://www.apple.com/uk/music/

iOS 9 – Better, faster, and an extra hour of battery life!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

As many iPhone users will be aware, each time a new iOS upgrade is released, one of the things everyone is hoping for is improved battery life. With iOS 9 on the horizon and a selection of great improvements across the board, that might just be a possibility!

At WWDC 2015 this week, Apple revealed the new features to their iOS upgrade coming with the next generation iPhones available in September 2015.

First off is the more intuitive Siri, now with a wider range of topics and more accurate answers. Rivalling Google, the personal assistant has learnt all about context. For example:

  • If you mention a topic in messages, and ask Siri to “Remind me about it later”, it will scan the app and try to determine what “it” is.
  • If you ask Siri to “Show me photos of London last year” it will bring up photos based on that location.

Appointments suggestions have been added in line with the Calendar, as well as intuitive functions such as bringing up the Now Playing screen when you’re at the gym with your headphones in, or an Audio book when your iPhone is plugged into your car. The search feature will also incorporate your contacts, emails, apps and more, so if a friend messages you, Siri can bring up your calendar to show when you are next meeting up!

Designed for newer iPad tablets, iOS 9 features a whole new multitasking upgrade which supports Split View, Slide Over – which brings another app from the side of the screen, i.e. notes or text – and Picture-in-Picture mode. Unfortunately, Split View is only available for iPad Air 2, and Slide Over and Picture-in-Picture are only compatible with more recent iPads, Air, Mini etc.

Apple Pay has now been updated for use in the UK, coming this autumn. It will be supported by over two thirds of credit and debit card issuers including HSBC and Lloyds. The US version has been a huge success and will continue to integrate with store-issued cards and rewards, and because of this, Apple has renamed Passbook to Wallet, where Apple Pay will live.

Luckily, Apple have now made the iOS 9 upgrade less demanding on storage, needing approximately 1.3GB of internal space. Compared to the huge 4.5GB of iOS 8, this is great for the users of the smaller GB iPhones, as a mass deletion of photos, videos and music shouldn’t be necessary. Security and keyboard updates have also been applied, with improved cursor control and added shortcuts.

As well as these specifics, Apple is promising;

  • More powerful built-in apps, better for everyday use. There will be several enhancements to Mail, web browsing, Messages amongst others.
  • News – A brand new feature, collecting all the stories, topics and sources you are interested in, in one place. Digitally enhanced but visually crafted to how the publisher intended.
  • Notes – also improved, featuring photos, maps, URLs and the use of a finger sketch tool, updated via iCloud for all your connected devices.
  • Apple Maps – perhaps long awaited, this feature has been updated with public transportation routes in Transit view. Buses, trains, even Ferry routes right there on your screen. The diehard Google Maps users will probably stick to what they know, but at least when the built-in apps open Apple Maps it will be a better experience.

And finally, after improvements to efficiency across the whole iOS spectrum, there is now a new ‘Low Power’ mode available. This means you can extend your texting, gaming, Facebook-ing and whatever else you want to do by up to an hour before charging is needed. Let’s hope this grows with future updates!

So which of my devices will support iOS 9?

The general thought is if it ran iOS 8, it will run iOS 9 (but not all features). Here’s the official list:

  • iPhone 4s, 5, 5c, 5s, 6, 6 Plus
  • iPad 2, 3rd generation, 4th generation, mini, mini 2, mini 3, Air, Air 2
  • iPod touch 5th generation

To find out more, visit http://www.apple.com/ios/ios9-preview/

Watch this space for more upcoming news!

New Windows 10 release date has been revealed – July 29th

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

‘The strengths of Windows 8 with Windows 7’ – Windows Insider

As many will have seen through social media and news websites alike, the new Windows 10 release date has been revealed… July 29th! Circle your calendars, save the date, or simply click the recently installed Windows icon found at the right-hand side of your taskbar (if your PC is new enough that is). The good news is, Microsoft has announced customers with PCs and laptops running Windows 7 and 8 will be able to get Windows 10 as a free upgrade!

The requirements for Windows 10 are as follows:

Processor : 1GHz or faster with support for PAE, NX, and SSE2

RAM : 1GB (32-bit) or 2GB (64-bit)

Hard disk space : 16GB

Graphics card : Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver

Microsoft account

Internet access

After the worldwide success of Windows 7, and the not-so-great Windows 8, let’s see what the new and – hopefully – improved version has to offer:

  • The return of the start menu! Back in full force the revived, expanded start menu will feature the addition of Live Tiles
  • Favourites and pinned apps remembered from previous Windows (7 and 8)
  • Faster start up and resume features
  • Unified settings combining the control panel and PC settings, as well as an Action Centre providing notifications
  • Redesigned insider hub
  • Higher levels of built-in security, further designed to work with your current hardware and software
  • Microsoft Edge – the all new built in browser for a better web experience
  • Cortana – a strong rival to Siri and Google, Cortana gives instant access to key actions such as making reservations or reading reviews, all without leaving the page you are on. Cortana also delivers reminders at the right time and place, is easily editable to what Cortana knows about you and increases its knowledge over time
  • Multi-tasking app interface, enabling you to snap up to four apps in place and see all open tasks in a single view
  • Virtual desktop capabilities
  • Xbox app – with the ability to control the Xbox One and play multiplayer games cross-platform
  • All new Windows Store
  • Universal apps – including Photos, Videos, Calendar, Maps, Messaging and Mail in a consistent design across all different devices and screen sizes of phones, tablets, laptops and PCs

For new In Easy Steps titles on Windows 10 keep your eye on the Coming Soon page of our website.

WordPress urges all bloggers and developers to install critical security update

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

wplogo-notext-cmyk

On 27th April, WordPress released a critical security update to a fix a security flaw found in previous versions of the content management system (CMS). They are urging all website owners to install the update as soon as possible to eliminate any chance of a website attack.

The vulnerability was discovered by Jouko Pynnönen, and it affects millions of sites worldwide. It works when the attacker injects malicious JavaScript code greater than 64kb into the comments section of the website. If the comment is then viewed by a logged in administrator, the hacker could then run code on the server, change the administrator password, add new administrators and deface the website etc. Usually, WordPress won’t publish a comment until a first post by a user has been approved. However, the attacker might be able to fool an administrator with a standard first comment, so they can go on to have malicious comments in the future automatically approved.

How to install the update:

  1. Log in to your WordPress Dashboard (http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/)
  2. Click Dashboard > Updates down the left hand side
  3. Click the ‘Update Now’ button

You can find out more about the update by going to the Official WordPress Blog.

Remember, you can learn to build all kinds of websites in WordPress by purchasing our book WordPress in easy steps. Here are just some of the things you will learn from the book:

  • How to set up WordPress via HostGator
  • How to create pages and posts
  • How to change the appearance of your website
  • How to add content to your pages
  • How to build an online store
  • How to build an online forum
  • How to add users
  • Adding contact forms
  • Website Translation
  • SEO with Yoast

And much more!

Get your copy today from our online store or from Amazon UK or Amazon US

Raspberry Pi 2 released

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Raspberry Pi 2 was unveiled February 2, 2015 for sale at the same price as the existing Model B+. This has an identical form-factor to the existing Raspberry Pi 1  Model B+. All of the connectors are in the same place and have the same functionality, and the board can still be run from a 5V micro-USB power adapter. It also has  complete compatibility with Raspberry Pi 1.

Raspberry Pi 2

Raspberry Pi 2

Like the (Pi 1) Model B+, it also has:

  • 4 USB ports
  • 40 GPIO pins
  • Full HDMI port
  • Ethernet port
  • Combined 3.5mm audio jack and composite video
  • Camera interface (CSI)
  • Display interface (DSI)
  • Micro SD card slot
  • VideoCore IV 3D graphics core

 

Raspberry Pi 2 has a new System-on-Chip (SoC) BCM2836 900MHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 CPU and a full 1GB of LPDDR2 SDRAM. The new ARMv7 processor means it can run the full range of ARM GNU/Linux distributions, including Snappy Ubuntu  Core, as well as Microsoft Windows 10. Raspberry Pi 2 has backwards-compatibility with all previous Raspberry Pi models but can, however, run “bigger and more powerful projects” owing to its upgraded CPU and RAM specifications.

Mike McGrath, author of Raspberry Pi in easy steps

Windows 10 – what’s new?

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

At Microsoft’s live event on 21st January we learned more about Windows 10, which is expected in the Autumn of this year.

Windows-10-Start-Menu

Windows-10-Start-Menu

  • It’s going to be free to upgrade from Windows 7, 8 and 8.1, for a year from its launch date

The new version will be also very much about making those who were unhappy with Windows 8 happy again. The focus is very much about the keyboard and mouse, but those who have devices with touch capabilities haven’t been forgotten. It will include:

  • One Desktop – not split between the ‘old’ desktop and modern apps
  • A new web browser, called Spartan
  • Xbox app on the Desktop
  • Expanded start menu – looks more like Windows 7 than Windows 8
  • Cortana – voice controlled assistant with headset
  • Apps that run in a window
  • Snap function – will work with all apps; snap four apps on the same screen
  • Task View – see a thumbnail of all open apps
  • Multiple desktops

Read PC Advisor’s article and the BBC’s article for more information.

Why Agile Project Management?

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in Article

The traditional approach to project management starts by a definition of what exactly the project is required to achieve. This usually means an agreement between all parties concerned, including the project manager, of when and what the end result should be. This method of project management is largely based on a sequential design process referred to as the ‘waterfall’ model. It is termed this as progress is seen as flowing steadily downwards (like a waterfall) through each stage of the project. This model is inherited from the construction industry, where the prohibitive cost of making late changes means requirements are frozen as early as possible in the project.

However, this method does not suit software development process, where requirements could and often change during the course of a project. A more adaptive alternative was needed and through the 1990s methods such as Scrum, DSDM (Dynamic Systems Development Method), Extreme Programming, and Lean Development evolved to meet these needs. Following these methods, collectively referred to as ‘agile’, requirements are developed through the life of the project and delivered through a series of releases, each of which delivers more of the required functionality.

The traditional waterfall approach to project management does not fit comfortably with these agile methods, so a new form of Agile Project Management is now used for software development. The key aspects of Agile Project Management are:

  • Requirements: are expected to develop and change during the project
  • Planning: is carried out as late as responsible by the development team
  • Project Phases: contain several iterations, leading to a number of product releases
  • Change Control: is replaced by the features backlog, which is controlled by the business
  • Risk Management: is shared by the developers and the business through the product owner
  • Organization: the way of working is managed by the development team

What’s new in Photoshop Elements 13?

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

What’s new in Photoshop Elements 13?

With Adobe having just released the 13th version of their popular photo editing software, we take a look at its new features:

Photomerge Compose

Create new scenes by taking elements from one photo and placing them in another – e.g. if you want to add a person to a group photo, get the picture of the missing person from another photo and just insert them into the group photo. The Photomerge Compose feature will automatically adjust the colour and lighting so that you’d never know the person was missing in the first place!

Autocrop suggestions

Cropping a photo can be straightforward. But if you’re not sure, Photoshop Elements 13 will now present you with four crop options to choose from.

eLive

Elements Live view (eLive) is a concept to make content and resources available to users, visually pleasing and integrated right into Photoshop Elements Editor and Organizer. The new eLive view displays articles, videos, tutorials, and more – categorized into channels such as Learn, Inspire, and News. As a user, you can now access various tutorials and articles from the application itself.

Facebook cover photos

Have you ever seen those Facebook cover photos that blend the profile and cover pictures together? Well, now you can create your own in Photoshop Elements 13.

New Guided Edits

Change your photo to black and white. Or, retain one dominant colour, and turn the rest of the photograph black and white. The new Guided Edits in Photoshop Elements 13 help you transform the mundane into works of art with as few clicks and adjustments as possible.

Edit and refine selections

In Photoshop Elements 13, making fine selections is now easier. If you make an incorrect selection, instead of starting again, you can make fine adjustments to the boundaries of your current selection.

HiDPI display support

Photoshop Elements 13 now has native support for high-resolution display devices for the Windows (HiDPI monitors) and Mac (Retina displays).

Content-aware fill

Easily remove unwanted or unnecessary objects from your photographs. Photoshop Elements 13 will intelligently fill the chosen areas of your photograph with content based on the surrounding parts of the photograph.

Refine edge

The options to refine the edges of a selection are now more accessible through the Tool Options bar.

Adobe Camera Raw 8.6

The latest version of Adobe Camera Raw (ACR 8.6) is integrated into Photoshop Elements 13.

Quick Edit effects

Each effect in the Quick Mode now displays five possible variations so that you can choose one that is best for you.

Expert mode effects

19 new effects have been added to the Effect panel, and all thumbnails have been improved to display the Effect more clearly.

Enhancements in Photoshop Elements 13

Scrapbooking preset

The preset for scrapbooking is now available for all locales and countries.

Layer styles

In the Style Settings dialog for Layers, a new drop-down has been added for the position of the stroke. The drop-down has values: Outside, Inside, and Center.

Type tool – Scrubby slider

The font size now has a scrubby slider functionality. This enables you to change the font size quickly and conveniently.

Recently-opened files

Recently-opened files are displayed in the Open drop-down and in the Files > Open Recently Edited File menu. Both lists now display just the name of the file, instead of showing the entire folder and file name.

Photoshop Elements 13 in easy steps is due for publication in January 2015.

Updated features in Photoshop CC (Creative Cloud) 2014 edition

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Robert Shufflebotham, the author of Photoshop CC in easy steps, and previous editions of this title, lists the new and enhanced features of the latest version of this popular photo editing software:

Preserve Details (Enlargement)
Introduces in the Image Size dialog box a new algorithm that means you can make images larger, or increase resolution, whilst retaining much greater image detail and better sharpness than previously possible in Photoshop.

Focus Area Selection
A time-saving and easy-to-use technique for selecting the in-focus objects in an image. The Focus Area selection dialog box automatically analyses the image for areas that are in focus and provides options for previewing the results on a variety of backgrounds along with controls for adjusting and fine-tuning the results.

Linked Smart Objects
You can now place other Photoshop or Illustrator documents in Photoshop and link to these files externally, rather than embedding their file information within the Photoshop file. You can edit the linked files externally, as independent artwork, and then update changes in the Photoshop file where they are placed.

Perspective Warp
Using Perspective Warp mode you can make rotational adjustments to perspective in an image – useful for adjusting perspective in architectural images.

Smart Guides
Smart Guides provide precision and accuracy on-screen as you draw copy, move and manipulate shapes and layers.

Live Shape Properties Panel
The Live Shape Properties panel gives you precision over position and size of rectangles and ellipses and the ability to specify a corner radius for rectangles that can be adjusted at any time.

Automatic Camera Shake Reduction
For images that are correctly focused, but where some blurring exists due to camera shake or movement of the subject, the Camera Shake Reduction filter can analyse the image and reduce the amount of blurring. There are controls to set the blur trace region manually and also to create manual blur trace settings if you are not satisfied with the automatic results.

TypeKit Fonts
TypeKit Fonts are available in Photoshop CC 2014. Typekit integrates with Photoshop CC 2014 to deliver and sync fonts from an external Typekit server that you connect to via the Creative Cloud. Typekit fonts are not installed locally on your computer.

ENHANCED FEATURES

Image Size dialog box
New image preview in the Image Size dialog box and simplified set of controls for managing image size and resolution.

Smart Sharpen Filter
Improved. New adaptive sharpening technology minimizes noise and halo effects.

Content Aware Fill, Content Aware Move, Content Aware Patch
Improved algorithms producing better results.

 

9781840786309 Photoshop CC in easy steps

9781840786309 Photoshop CC in easy steps

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photoshop CC in easy steps is available now

In Easy Steps rounds up the announcements from Apple’s Worldwide Developers’ Conference in San Francisco

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

We round up the announcements from yesterday’s Apple’s Worldwide Developers’ Conference.

 

iPhone6

The iPhone has been redesigned, it is larger and thinner, and is available in two sizes:

  • iPhone 6 has a 4.7 inch screen and is 6.9 mm thick. Prices start at $199.
  • iPhone 6 Plus has a 5.5 inch screen and is 7.1 mm thick. Prices start at $299

Both models are available in gold, silver and space gray.

The new iPhones have an A8 chip, giving 25% faster performance, and higher resolution Retina HD screens. They have new sensors, including a barometer, so fitness apps can distinguish whether the owner was running up a hill or on the flat, and an M8 co-processor which can estimate distances.

An improved camera with ‘Focus Pixels’ gives better and faster auto focus.

Faster Wireless connection – up to 3X faster than previous iPhones.

Both iPhones will be released on September 19th, with pre-orders from September 12th

 

 

AppleWatch

 

 

The Apple Watch is a new product from Apple. It is available in two sizes, with two metal frame color options, 11 different watch faces and six different straps.

It is controlled by a navigational tool which Apple calls a “digital crown” – a dial on its side that allows content on its screen to be magnified or scrolled through, and can also be pressed inwards to act as a home button. The Siri voice control function is also available on the Apple Watch.

The watch also has a heart monitor, gyroscope and accelerometer and works as a “comprehensive health and fitness device”.

Prices start at $349 and the Apple Watch will be available early 2015.

 

 

 

iOS 8 (the operating system for iPhone and iPad) – includes:

A smarter keyboard. Next word prediction based on your writing style and past conversations. Predictive text optimized for languages around the world. Third-party keyboard options.

Family Sharing. Up to six people in your household can easily share each other’s purchases from iTunes, iBooks, and the App Store, and share photos, calendars, locations and more.

Improved Photos app. Easier to find, edit and enhance photos

Better messaging app. Include voice, video and location within your message. Improved group chat function. Easily view every attachment from one conversation thread. Send multiple photos and videos at once.

Better notifications function. Deal with notifications instantly, without leaving the app you’re in. See your recent contacts and favorites from the multitasking interface.

Apple Pay – a new service to replace your wallet. For iPhones and Apple Watch. The Apple Pay service depends on an NFC (near field communication) chip featured in both the new phones and watch. Apple says the service is secure as the card details are stored within the Passbook app, so the details are not shared with the vendor. Apple Pay can also be used to make payments in apps.

iCloud Drive. Work on any file, anywhere, on any device (including Mac and PC).

There are new time-saving features in Mail, and Safari tab features are now available on iPad too.

Release date: September 17th

 

OS X Yosemite (the operating system for Mac devices)

Improved connection between Macs and iOS devices, making sharing files between iOS and Mac devices even easier. You will also be able to make phone calls on a Mac via your iPhone.

Redesigned interface and app icons, and a new notification centre.

New Spotlight search feature allows searching on your Mac and also online.

iCloud Drive – a new file-sharing/storage feature which allows syncing across Mac, iOS and Windows devices.

Release date: Autumn/Fall 2014 (date yet to be announced) 

 

The conference rounded up with Apple and U2 offering U2’s latest album free and exclusively on iTunes until mid-October.

 

For further information about the latest developments, visit Apple’s website.

 

Tesco Hudl Tablet

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

The Hudl is a good value and versatile tablet that is produced by Tesco, the UK based retailer. It runs on the Android operating system, comes with a 7 inch screen and is available in four different colours. The Hudl can perform all standard tasks expected of a tablet and is also linked to some specific services offered through Tesco, such as groceries, Tesco direct and the blinkbox services for music, movies and TV shows.

The Hudl can also be used for surfing the web, sending email, social networking, viewing movies and TV shows, listening to music, reading books and much more. Some of the key specifications of the Hudl are:

  • Colours: Black, Red, Purple, Blue.
  • Display: 1440 x 900 HD resolution, 242 ppi (pixels per inch).
  • Processor: 1.5GHz A9 Quad-core processor.
  • Memory: 1GB of RAM.
  • Strorage: 16GB.
  • Cameras: 3 megapixel rear-facing and 2 megapixel front-facing.
  • Batterty: Up to 9 hours of video playback.
  • Operating System: Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.
  • Price: £99-£119

9781840786316

Check out HUDL in easy steps: a useful guide which covers the A to Z of setting up and using this popular tablet including how to use the Hudl, working with apps, using the Hudl for music and enterttinment, taking pictures, social networking, browsing the web etc.

With a copy of HUDL in easy steps at hand, you and your family will soon be taking full advantage of everything the Hudl has to offer!