New special offers – Windows or Mac title with FREE mouse mat or magnetic bookmark

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Cross some Christmas presents off your shopping list with our latest special offer!

Know someone who can do with a little help using their computer?

How about an In Easy Steps guide to help them learn Windows or macOS at their own pace?

Now, on offer for Christmas, with a FREE mouse mat or magnetic bookmark with Windows or Mac shortcuts and tips to keep nearby for easy reference.

Everything they need to start using their computer independently.

The perfect present for a Windows or Mac newbie!

Books plus accessories slide

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Visit this page to choose your book and accessory, and place your order!

Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps – a new review from techkids.com

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps – review

Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps is an awesome book. The projects are really impressive. This is a fairly advanced Scratch book. A lot of children now learn Scratch at school and some are ready for something a bit more advanced at home where they have more time available and a bit of support.

I tried out the book with my 9-year-old who has quite a bit of Scratch experience but is more of a tinkerer than an instruction follower! However, he was drawn to the book because it’s packed with neat techniques that he’ll be able to apply if he takes the time to learn them.

The Projects

The projects, especially the later ones, are very meaty. There’s lots of code to work through and kids need to really pay attention to instructions. The level of difficulty was about right for my son though he found the volume of code quite daunting at first.

Detailed Instructions

The majority of the book gives detailed instructions on exactly what code to enter. This means that kids can create quite impressive projects. Some children won’t understand everything they are entering, but that’s okay, they’ll pick up more over time. My 9-year-old found some of the Scratch blocks quite hard to focus on in the print edition (they’re not all the same size.) I helped him keep track of where he was by reading out instructions and he was fine. It is a lot of information to take in. That’s not a bad thing, following detailed instructions carefully is a great skill to have.

Creating Graphics

My favourite thing about the book is that it spends lots of time on creating graphics using the paint tool in Scratch. This is something I always try to encourage. In my experience young kids are very happy to experiment with the paint tool and create their own sprites and backgrounds. Then somewhere around age 9 they start to think that the graphics they can create are rubbish and just want to use images they can find online. It’s important to teach kids digital arts skills so that they do have the skill to create graphics that they think are good enough. Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps spends lots of time on these skills which is fantastic.

3D Glasses

The printed edition of the book comes with a pair of 3D glasses because some of the projects involve creating 3D effects. This is a great idea and instantly appealed to my son.

Scratch Versions

Although the book is recently published it refers to Scratch 1.4 on the Raspberry Pi. Scratch 2 is now available on the Pi so you don’t have to use Scratch 1.4. Some projects say that they can’t be completed on the Pi but they can (except on older models.) Technology does keep moving on! At the moment there’s no support for programmatically taking photos on the Pi in Scratch 2 (I hope it gets added) and one of the projects does use that feature so you’ll still need Scratch 1.4 on the Pi for that one. The book also includes a taster of Scratch Jr, I guess this is so younger siblings can join in.

Verdict

Cool Scratch Projects in Easy Steps by Sean McManus is a fantastic book for more experienced scratchers. The steps are fairly easy, but there are a lot of them! Kids will need to invest quite a bit of time to work through all the projects which makes the book good value. I often say that there’s no hurry to move children on to text-based programming languages. Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps is a great way to keep kids on the Scratch platform for longer. You know those really amazing Scratch projects that kids are always in awe of? This book is a great step towards learning the skills that are needed to be able to develop projects like that.

 

See the review on the techkids.com site

Buy the book from our online shop

New release: Java in easy steps, 6th edition – covers Java 9

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Create your own exciting Java programs and compile them into executable files that can be run on any Java-enabled device, with this newly-revised In Easy Steps title! 

9781840787535

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Java in easy steps, 6th edition instructs you how to easily create your own exciting Java programs. Updated for Java 9, which was released September 2017, it contains separate chapters on the major features of the Java language. Complete example programs with colorized code illustrate each important aspect of Java programming – all in easy steps.

Available NOW from our online shop.

 

 

Windows 10 in easy steps – Special Edition, 2nd Edition – updated for Fall Creators Update

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Following the Fall Creators Update, released 17 October 2017, we have updated the following pages in Windows 10 in easy steps – Special Edition, 2nd Edition:

Page 120 – Currency converter added to Calculator

Page 206 – Support for Emojis added to Mail

Page 216 – People hub added to taskbar

Pages 231 and 240 – Pin to taskbar option added to Edge

Pages 290306 and 406 – Phone and Cortana added to Settings

Pages 246-249 – Creations added to Photos

Page 355 – On-Demand Sync added to File Explorer

New iOS 11 titles for iPad and iPhone

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

Following the release of iOS 11, the following titles have been updated and are available to buy now!

 

iPad for Seniors in easy steps, 7th Edition

9781840787900

 

A handy guide for any Senior new to the iPad – get up and running quickly! Presented in larger type for easier reading.
For all iPads using iOS 11, including iPad Mini and iPad Pro.

Special launch price: £7.99 (RRP £10.99)

 

 

 

 

 

iPhone for Seniors in easy steps, 4th Edition

9781840787917

 

Learn to use your new iPhone quickly: Messaging, calls and emails, video calls with FaceTime, use iCloud and Family Sharing, explore the iTunes Music Library and much more! Presented in larger type for easier reading.
Covers iPhones with iOS 11.

Special launch price: £7.99 (RRP £10.99)

 

 

 

 

 

New release: Earned Value Management in easy steps

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Keep tabs on the status of all projects, including agile projects, with this new title in our Project Management series:

 

 

  • Earned Value Management (EVM) helps to determine the real status of a project.
  • Monitor how much time and money has been spent, and how much has been achieved.
  • Understand how much still needs to be done, and get good indication of final costs and expected completion dates of the project.

Earned Value Management in easy steps is now available as an ebook (PDF) from our online shop, and from Amazon (for Kindle), Apple (iBooks), Google Play, Kobo, and Nook.

 

Also available in the series:

9781840786415

Agile Project Management in easy steps, 2nd Edition 

An essential guide for anyone new to agile projects and a valuable source of inspiration for the more experienced. Explains the key principles, techniques and processes of agile project management.

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

9781840787313

Scrum in easy steps

An essential guide for anyone new to Scrum, and a valuable reference for the more experienced. Scrum is the most widely used agile framework for developing software products.

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

9781840784466 Effective Project Management in easy steps

Shows how to make sure your project is successful. Covers risk-management together with insights on how to plan, lead, organize and control a project.

£10.99

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to spot fake news on Facebook

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

As the continuing furore over fake news on Facebook shows, you can’t always believe what you see on social media.

Although Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg once said the idea that his company may have influenced the US election is “crazy”, he’s now vowing to tighten political advertising.

But what about “normal” advertising? You’ll often see appealing offers on Facebook, suggesting that a Like, a share or a click-through can reap a reward.

Yet as the old adage goes, you get nothing for free. What may sound like an offer you can’t refuse is more often something that should have you running for the hills.

Thousands of people have fallen for the supermarket voucher scam, for instance. You may well have seen it. It suggests that you can grab yourself a high value money-off coupon for a major retailer in celebration of a special event.

Click it, however, and you’ll simply be directed to a survey page. You’ll be asked to fill in your details and share the offer with others.

But get this: you won’t receive any money off your next shop. Instead, you will have simply given away some of your personal information and encouraged others to do the same.

So how do you spot such scams? Well, a quick look at the voucher below should set alarms bells ringing: for starters, the date is in the US format, which is unusual for a UK company, and the URL is a jumble of letters of numbers.

 

Facebook-coupons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are other telltale signs within this fake coupon which we look at in the advanced sections of our new book, Facebook for Beginners in Easy Steps.

We also cover the steps you need to take to enhance your privacy on social media, making it an invaluable guide for experienced users as well as newcomers. It is certainly worth pointing out those pages if you buy the book for a someone just starting out with Facebook. Online safety is, after all, vitally important.

 

9781840787795

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buy it here at the special launch price of £7.99
(RRP £10.99)

 

Java 9 released!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Java Oracle have released Java SE 9 – the latest update to the Java Platform.

This release includes much awaited new features like the modularization of the Java Platform, better performance, support for new standards, and many other improvements.

Find out more here.

We are updating Java in easy steps to cover this new version – due for publication in October. More information here.

 

NEW: In Easy Steps Smart Mouse Mats – for Windows and Mac

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

New additions to the In Easy Steps Smart Accessories range:

Windows and Mac mouse mats

  • Have all those clever shortcuts to hand.
  • Top tips and shortcuts to make using your Windows PC or Mac even easier!
  • An ideal present for the Windows or Mac user.

WindowsMousemat

 

 

 

 
MacMousemat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Available NOW from our online shop!

£5.00 each (+ VAT where applicable)

Just released: Facebook for Beginners in easy steps

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

Nervous about using Facebook, or know someone who is? Then Facebook for Beginners in easy steps is the perfect companion to guide the new user through joining and using the world’s largest social media site, all in easy steps!

 

Facebook for Beginners in easy steps 9781840787795

 

Set up an account and post on Facebook, whilst maintaining your privacy and staying safe.

Have fun perfecting and sharing photos and videos.

Create Facebook Groups and Pages, including your business or charity Page.

Save time by using Events to invite friends, and to organize your social life, in an instant.

Buy and sell items using the no-fee Marketplace.

Eliminate irrelevant adverts and annoying posts from your News Feed.

Use the free messaging service, Messenger, to send private messages, and make phone and video calls.

Learn about Facebook Live, and the television apps.

 

 

 

Even if you are already a Facebook veteran, you’re sure to learn something new with this jam-packed book.

Available NOW from our online shop – special launch price £7.99 (RRP £10.99)

Windows 10 in easy steps, 3rd edition (covers the Creators Update) now available!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Just published: Windows 10 in easy steps has been updated to cover the Windows 10 Creators Update which was released in April.

Ideal for those new to Windows 10, and for anyone upgrading who wants to grasp the essentials easily and quickly!

9781840787894_001_iart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The book is updated to cover the new functions of the Creators Update, which include:

  • The Settings app has been updated to include more options.
  • There is a new Settings category for Gaming, and there is also a new Game Bar which can be activated when playing games.
  • The Start menu has been enhanced, with the option of creating folders on the Start menu so that several items can be stored and accessed within one menu tile.
  • Cortana, the Windows 10 personal digital assistant has new voice commands for turning off, sleeping or restarting a PC, and also a greater range of apps now support Cortana.
  • The Microsoft Edge web browser has enhanced tabs functions, whereby they can be grouped together and also previewed by moving the cursor over a tab.
  • The Share menu has been redesigned to display apps with which certain items can be shared, and this is available from the Share button in a range of apps.
  • 3D features prominently in the Windows 10 Creators Update, with a new app, Paint 3D, for creating your own 3D pictures. Other 3D enhancements include being able to upload and view 3D images in the Edge web browser, and 3D models can be used in PowerPoint for transitions between slides.
  • Developing the 3D theme further, the Windows 10 Creators Update also includes a number of Mixed Reality (MR) features. Mixed Reality is the combining of the real and virtual worlds to create a unique user experience.

Available NOW from our online shop

Special launch price  £7.99  (RRP £11.99)

iPhone X announced by Apple

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Apple announces three new iPhones at the Special Event in Cupertino yesterday:

iphone x-8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

iPhone X

Including:

OLED edge-to-edge screen

  • Facial recognition software (unlock, authenticate and pay using your face)
  • No Home button – a single swipe takes you Home from anywhere
  • Animojis – mirror your expressions in 12 different Animoji

£999/$999

Read more here.

 

iPhone 8 and iPhone 8

Including:

  • Wireless charging, using the new AirPower mat
  • Improvements to screen, camera, processing power and more
  • An update to the operating system – iOS 11 is coming

iPhone 8: £699/$699    iPhone 8 Plus: £799/$799

Read more here.

Windows 10 in easy steps, updated to cover the Creators Update

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

 

 

Due for publication shortly, Windows 10 in easy steps has been updated to cover the Windows 10 Creators Update which was released in April.

The book is updated to cover the new functions of the Creators Update, which include:

  • The Settings app has been updated to include more options.
  • There is a new Settings category for Gaming, and there is also a new Game Bar which can be activated when playing games.
  • The Start menu has been enhanced, with the option of creating folders on the Start menu so that several items can be stored and accessed within one menu tile.
  • Cortana, the Windows 10 personal digital assistant has new voice commands for turning off, sleeping or restarting a PC, and also a greater range of apps now support Cortana.
  • The Microsoft Edge web browser has enhanced tabs functions, whereby they can be grouped together and also previewed by moving the cursor over a tab.
  • The Share menu has been redesigned to display apps with which certain items can be shared, and this is available from the Share button in a range of apps.
  • 3D features prominently in the Windows 10 Creators Update, with a new app, Paint 3D, for creating your own 3D pictures. Other 3D enhancements include being able to upload and view 3D images in the Edge web browser, and 3D models can be used in PowerPoint for transitions between slides.
  • Developing the 3D theme further, the Windows 10 Creators Update also includes a number of Mixed Reality (MR) features. Mixed Reality is the combining of the real and virtual worlds to create a unique user experience.

Click here for more information, and to request a notification as soon as the book is available to buy from our online shop.

Raspberry Pi wins prestigious engineering award

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

News from the MagPi (the official Raspberry Pi magazine):

“The Raspberry Pi has won this year’s MacRobert Award, the UK’s longest running and most prestigious national prize for engineering and innovation.

Raspberry Pi has inspired multiple generations to get into coding: children are learning about coding for the first time, often alongside their parents and grandparents. Communities in the developing world are being empowered by the Raspberry Pi and its modern day computing-on-a-budget.”

Read more, and enter a competition to win a Raspberry Pi 3, here.

 

A roundup of the announcements at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, 5 June 2017

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Apple’s annual conference happened yesterday, so here’s a summary of their latest announcements:

New devices:

ipad-pro-draw-colors

  • A new 10.5 inch iPad Pro, with redesigned retina display.
  • A faster and more powerful iMac, with a brighter and more vivid Retina display.
  • Seventh generation Intel Core processors for the MacBook and MacBook Pro, for even faster performance.
  • A powerful new product, iMac Pro – coming in December.
  • A new HomePod – a powerful speaker that is controlled through voice interaction with Siri, and allows  you access to Apple Music so you can play hi-fidelity sound throughout the room, no matter where it’s placed.  It also helps with everyday household questions and tasks. And it’s a hub for controlling your smart home accessories – coming in December.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New operating systems:

iOS 11 for the iPhone and iPad:

ios_11_ipad_iphone

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Including:

  • A new Files app to bring all your files together.
  • A new Dock which will be available from any screen.
  • Enhanced Multitasking capabilities.
  • Drag and Drop on the iPad so you can move text, photos and files from one app to another.
  • More versatile Apple Pencil capabilties for the iPad Pro.
  • A new document scanner in Notes.
  • A new QuickType keyboard to speed up your typing.
  • ARKit, a new framework that brings augmented reality to iOS devices by allowing developers to easily build AR experiences.
  • Apple Pay within Messages so you can send money to friends.
  • Live photo enhancements, so you can turn a live photo into a video loop.
  • A new camera on the iPhone.
  • A redesigned App Store.
  • Enhancements to Siri, including new, less robotic voices, and the ability to translate into other languages.
  • Apple Music enhancements, including the ability to share playlists with friends.
  • AirPlay 2 allows you to control  your home audio system and the speakers throughout your house.
  • Redesigned Control Center and Lock screen notifications.
  • A ‘Do not disturb’ function for when you’re driving – iPhone can now sense when you’re driving and prevent you from being distracted by calls, text messages, and notifications until later.
  • Enhancements to Maps to include indoor maps (of airports, shopping malls and other large venues), and lane guidance arrows.

 

A new operating system for Macs: macOS High Sierra coming in the Fall, with enhanced video and graphics capabilities and navigation improvements.

A new Apple Watch operating system – watchOS 4,with improvements to help you stay fit and healthy, new watch faces, and enhancements to the Music app.

 

Of course, we’ll be updating our iPhone, iPad and Mac books later in the year to cover the new features, so keep an eye on our Coming Soon page.

 

Windows 10 S announced by Microsoft

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

At its event in New York on May 2, Microsoft announced a new iteration of Windows 10 named “Windows 10 S”. This is a streamlined version of Windows 10, optimized to run on lower end hardware and provide faster login times. To keep the system running smoothly, the OS is limited to only run apps from the Window Store, which allows Microsoft to curb power-hungry or poorly optimized apps. Additionally, the full versions of Microsoft Office apps will be available through the Windows Store soon. Should a user try to download an app from outside the store they will see suggestions of similar apps available in Microsoft’s marketplace. If they really need that specific app, they have the option to upgrade to a full version of Windows 10 Pro. Windows 10 S is in most other respects similar to the regular version of Windows 10 and will be available in the summer of this year.

More details here.

Contributed by Mike McGrath, author of Windows 10 in easy steps – Special Edition, 2nd Edition (covers the Creators Update).

The Windows 10 Creators Update is now generally available, ahead of the official rollout!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

To get started with the installation process, you first need to head to this official Microsoft web page and download the latest version of Windows 10 Upgrade Assistant. After you do so by clicking on the blue “Update Now” button, you should navigate to the folder where the download was saved and click to run the assistant. If all goes well, you should be greeted with this message:

update-now

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then, once the assistant begins running, it will perform compatibility checks on your CPU and for disk space, then it will ping Microsoft servers and begin the download processes of the Windows 10 Creators Update. You should be aware that by going this route your files will be right where you left them, and you can go back to a prior version of Windows 10 if you don’t like it. It’s also worth noting the download and install might take a while, so it’s best to minimize, and sit back and relax.

 

Contributed by Mike McGrath, author of Windows 10 in easy steps – Special Edition, 2nd Edition

Microsoft announces Windows Creators update release date!

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

The Creators Update, Microsoft’s third major update to Windows 10, is scheduled to begin it’s official rollout on the 11th April.

cvswlslvyaaepoj

(http://bgr.com/2016/10/26/windows-10-creators-update-release-date/)

With more than 400 million Windows 10 users, the hotly anticipated Creators Update has now been given a specific release date, the 11th April. After currently being in the works for almost a year, the release falls alongside the April Patch Tuesday release, a release containing new security patches for Windows. Similar to the Anniversary Update, released on the 2nd of August 2016, the Creators Update will gradually filter out in waves targeting specific Anniversary Update devices first, with full rollout continuing over the following weeks. The Creators Up
date will be free to Windows 10 users, and if you are using the system at Anniversary Update level, Windows 10 will automatically download the update for you to confirm and install it when it is ready for you.

Within the Creators Update are reported new features such as ‘Night Light’, Windows Update improvements, stock app updates and more, including prompts to make privacy control easier (Windows Central). These enhancements will help both the advanced ‘creators’, as well as the average Windows 10 user, and certain privacy settings features aim to rectify any negative feedback Microsoft previously received.

Also upcoming in the 11th April update are creative new features, including:

  • Updated Start Menu, including the addition of ‘live folders’ and view options for the All Apps list.
  • Cortana improvements including the use of large text for notifications, improved web browsing capacity and Cortana inclusion when setting up Windows 10 for the first time. Also Cortana will be able to suggest reminders from content such as emails, requiring less user set up overall.
  • Tab saving features and ‘Set Tabs aside’ options in the Microsoft Edge browser, as well as a new Web Payments API for developers, automatically disabled Flash (for security) and an Edge Books area linked to the Windows Store Books Store.
  • Support for 4K screens when using Microsoft Edge and Netflix 4K streaming.
  • Windows Update improvements where systems only download the files they need for a major update, making updates 35% smaller, with less data use and faster downloads.
  • Night Light, a feature giving the screen a warm tint when enabled, blocking blue light which has been proven to trick the brain into thinking it is daylight, prohibiting sleep for users working late at night.
  • Gaming enhancements, with ‘Beam’ built-in streaming in the Game Bar, enabling better functionality of classic Windows PC games, and a dedicated section of the Settings app which allows the configuation of old and new gaming settings for PC gamers.

Click here to find out more.9781840787559_small-1

 

If you are eagerly awaiting the Creators Update, and want to be notified when our freshly updated title, Windows 10 in easy steps – Special Edition, 2nd Edition (covers the Creators Update) is available, follow the ‘Let me know…’ link at the bottom of the page. This title is the ideal handbook for Windows 10, and will allow you to fully appreciate the Creators Update, to it’s full capacity.

 

(PRODUCT)RED Special Edition iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus

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

Apple announces special edition (PRODUCT)RED versions of their popular iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus range

product_red_backfrontAs seen previously via their iPod range, Apple have teamed up with the Global Fund to fight AIDS, releasing two brilliant red aluminium finish handsets. Celebrating over 10 years of partnership between themselves and (RED), and edging further towards an AIDS-free generation, customers can now contribute directly to this fantastic cause by purchasing their desired (PRODUCT)RED smartphone.

Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO stated “Since we began working with (RED) 10 years ago, our customers have made a significant impact in fighting the spread of AIDS through the purchase of our products, from the original iPod nano (PRODUCT)RED Special Edition all the way to today’s lineup of Beats products and accessories for iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch,”

He continued, “The introduction of this special edition iPhone in a gorgeous red finish is our biggest (PRODUCT)RED offering to date in celebration of our partnership with (RED), and we can’t wait to get it into customers’ hands.”

Founded back in 2006, (RED)’s efforts have generated over $465 million for the Global Fund, with Apple contributing over $130 million. One hundred percent of all the money raised by (RED) goes to Global Fund HIV/AIDS grants, and their work provides life-saving HIV/AIDS programs in sub-Saharan Africa. These include testing, counselling, treatment and also preventative programs focusing on eliminating transmission from Mother to Child.

“Combining the global reach of the world’s most loved smartphone with our efforts to provide access to life-saving ARV medication in sub-Saharan Africa, customers now have a remarkable opportunity to make a difference and contribute to the Global Fund through the purchase of this new beautiful (PRODUCT)RED iPhone” said Deborah Dugan, (RED)’s CEO.

product_red_main

 

Available worldwide, the special edition iPhones will be available online and in stores from Friday, 24th March. The handsets will be available in 128GB and 256GB models, starting at $749 in the US. Click to find out more on the special edition (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

What a great cause!

 

Visual Studio 2017 Release

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

Visual Studio, Microsoft’s popular developer tool for building apps, has just been released in the 2017 Professional version!

visual studi 2017

Microsoft, Visual Studio 2017

The latest release includes:

Productivity features – IntelliSense, Code Lens which shows code references, changes or modifications helping you stay focused, improved debugging tools, code navigation, refactoring and code hints

Mobile development – Develop in C# and build apps for iOS and Android devices. Customisation and native user experiences with Xamarin, sharing logic and code across platforms. Use ‘existing web skills and build browser-based and hybrid apps that support unique device features with Apache Cordova’ (Microsoft, Visual Studio 2017)

Streamline with cloud capability – Easily create Microsoft Azure powered cloud-first applications with a built in suite of Azure tools, and directly from Visual Studio, configure, build, debug, package and deploy applications and services without having to leave the Integrated development environment (IDE)

Fundamentals – A faster IDE from startup to shut down, improve productivity and efficiency by spending less time on repetitive tasks, clearing the way to build great apps! Installation is lightweight and modular, tailored to your needs. Focus on the code with new processes including viewing, editing and debugging, without projects and solutions

Available to buy and download now! Find out more at Microsoft’s Visual Studio page

Linking to Page Fragments in HTML5

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

An Extract from HTML5 in easy steps, 2nd edition

– please note, colour references have not been included in this extract. For full colour specifications, see either print or digital copy.


Hyperlinks can target a specific point in a document that has been created with a “fragment” identifier – an element with a unique identifying name assigned to an id attribute in its opening tag. Within the hyperlink, the fragment identifier is specified to a href attribute in the opening <a> tag prefixed by a # hash character. For example, the tag <a href=”#top”> targets an element within the same document that contains the unique fragment identifier name of “top”.

A hyperlink can also target a specific point in a different document using the document’s URL, followed by a # hash character, then the fragment identifier. For example, the tag <a href=”index.html#top”> targets an element within a document named “index.html” that contains the unique fragment identifier name of “top”.

Following a hyperlink to a fragment identifier displays the document from the point where the fragment identifier appears:

 

fragment.html

 

Step 1
Start with the HTML5 document type declaration
<!DOCTYPE HTML>

The # hash character is used in HTML to target fragments and to specify hexadecimal color values, and in CSS to select elements by their id attribute for styling.

 

 

Step 2
Add a root element containing head and body sections, with a link element pointing to a style sheet
<html lang=“en”>
<head>
<meta charset=“UTF-8”>
<title>Fragment Example</title>
<link rel=”stylesheet” href=”fragment.css”>
</head>
<body> <!– Content to go here –> </body>
</html>

Step 3
Within the body section, insert two hyperlinks that contain fragment identifiers and also target different fragments
<a id=”top” href=”#btm”>Skip to Page Foot</a> |
<a id=”next-btm” href=”next.html#btm”>

Skip to Next Page Foot</a>

next.html

Step 4
Next, in the body, insert a content paragraph followed by a hyperlink containing a fragment identifier and targeting the first hyperlink in the document
<p class=”yellow-block”>Content…</p>
<a id=”btm” href=”#top”>Skip to Page Head</a>

Step 5
Save the HTML document, then create a second similar document with hyperlinks both above and below content
<a id=”top” href=”#btm”>Skip to Page Foot</a>
<p class=”red-block”>Content…</p>
<a id=”btm” href=”#top”>Skip to Page Head</a> |
<a id=”prev-top” href=”fragment.html#top”>

fragment.css

Skip to Previous Page Head</a>

Step 6
Create a style sheet that sizes and colors the content area of each document – representing different page bodies
p.yellow-block { height : 700px ; background : yellow ; }
p.red-block { height : 700px ; background : red ; }

Step 7
Save the style sheet, then open the first web page in your browser and follow the hyperlinks to each of this document’s fragments below and above its body content

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

 

At the end of lengthy pages include a hyperlink to a fragment at the top of the page so the user need not scroll back up.

 

 

Step 8
Now, follow the hyperlink to the fragment in the second document, then return to the top of the first document

 

 

 

 

 

 

Want to know more?

For the complete HTML5 guide, all in the trusted In Easy Steps style, click here. In full-colour and straightforward, jargon-free language, HTML5 in easy steps, 2nd edition instructs you how to employ the latest development for web page design with HyperText Markup Language (HTML5). This second edition is based upon the full W3C Recommendation of the HTML5.1 specification that was released on November 1, 2016. This means that ALL features of the latest specification are accurately included and fully demonstrated in this second edition.

Invisible Messages on the iPhone 7 and iOS 10

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

An extract from iPhone for Seniors in easy steps, 3rd edition – available now!

Invisible messages

There are several ways to enhance text messages, including sending them in a digital version of invisible ink:

Step 1
Write a message and press and hold on this button

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

 

While creating a message, tap once on the grey right-pointing arrow for the options for adding additional types of content, including adding stickers, digital touch items and photos (see pages 96-98 iPhone for Seniors in easy steps, 3rd edition).

 

 

Step 2
Tap once on the Bubble button at the top of the window

Step 3
Tap once on the Invisible Ink button

 

 

Step 4
Tap once on this button to send the invisible message

 

Step 5
The message is sent as a bubble where the content is obscured

Step 6
Swipe on the message to view its content

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

The other Bubble effects in Step 2 are Slam, Loud and Gentle. These determine how the speech bubble appears to the recipient: Slam moves in quickly from left to right; Loud appears initially as a large bubble; Gentle appears initially with small text in the speech bubble. After the initial effects, the bubble returns to its normal size.

 

 

 

iPhone for Seniors in easy steps, 3rd Ed iOS 10 9781840787436

Want to know more?

For the complete guide to the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 plus, in the trusted In Easy Steps style, click here. Whether you’re upgrading to iOS 10 from a previous version or using it for the very first time, iPhone for Seniors in easy steps, 3rd edition will guide you through the key features of your iPhone so you’ll be a pro in no time at all! In straightforward, jargon free language and larger type for easy viewing.

HTML5 in easy steps, 2nd Edition – ebooks available now!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

HTML5 in easy steps, 2nd Edition 9781840787542

HTML5 in easy steps, 2nd Edition 9781840787542

Updated to cover the full W3C Recommendation of the HTML 5.1 specification that was released in November 2016, our newest title, HTML5 in easy steps, 2nd Edition, is due for publication on February 17th, but if you can’t wait until then, e-versions are available to purchase NOW from our online shop, Amazon Kindle Store, Apple iBooks store, and other ebook platforms.

 
Click here to be notified by email when the print copy is available to buy.

Travelling with your iPad

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

An extract from iPad for Seniors in easy steps, 6th edition. Covers iOS 10

When you go traveling, there are a few essentials that you have to consider: passport, money and insurance to name three. To this you can add your iPad: it is a perfect traveling companion that can help you plan your trip and keep you informed and entertained when you are away from home.

photos_icon1
music_app1_ios9

Uses for traveling
There are a lot of App Store apps that can be used for different aspects of traveling. However, the built-in apps can also be put to good use before and during your travels:

 

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

 

The Clock app can also be used to keep an eye on the time in different parts of the world, set alarms, and as a stopwatch and timer.

 

 

  • Maps. Use this app for accessing maps of your destinations, finding directions and viewing images of areas to which you are traveling.maps_icon1
  • Notes. Create lists of items to pack or landmarks that you want to visit.notes_icon1
  • Contacts. Keep your Contacts app up-to-date so that you can use it to send postcards to friends and family. You can also use it to access phone numbers if you want to phone home.
    contacts_icon1reminders_icon1
  • Reminders. Set reminders for important tasks, such as changing foreign currency, buying tickets and details of flights.
  • Music. Use this app to play your favorite music while you are traveling or relaxing at your destination.
  • Photos. Store photos of your trip with this app and play them back as a slideshow when you get home.
  • FaceTime. If you have a Wi-Fi connection at your destination you will be able to keep in touch using video calls (as long as the recipient has FaceTime too).
  • facetime_icon1iBooks. Instead of dragging lots of heavy books around, use this app as your vacation library.
    ibooks_icon1_ios9

 

You can also use the Videos app to download movies
and TV shows from the iTunes Store. However, these
will take up a significant amount of space on your iPad
in terms of storage.

 

 

iPad for Seniors in easy steps, 6th Edition iOS 10 9781840787429

Want to know more?

For the complete guide to the Apple iPad, in the trusted In Easy Steps style, click here. Whether you’re upgrading to iOS 10 from a previous version or using it for the very first time, iPad for Seniors in easy steps, 6th edition will guide you through the key features so you’ll be a pro in no time at all! In straightforward, jargon free language and larger type for easy viewing.

Handoff in macOS Sierra

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

An extract from macOS Sierra in easy steps

Handoff is one of the key features of Continuity and it displays icons of items that you have opened on other devices, such as Safari web pages. Handoff does not work with all devices; it only works if both devices have OS X Yosemite or later, and iOS 8 or later, for mobile devices.

To use Handoff you will need to do the following:

  • Your Mac must be running OS X Yosemite (or later) and your mobile device (iPhone 5 and later, iPad Pro, iPad 4 and later, all models of iPad mini and the 5th generation iPod Touch) must have iOS 8 (or later).
  • Your Mac has to support Bluetooth 4.0, which means that most pre-2012 Macs are not compatible with Handoff.

To check if your Mac supports Handoff:

Don't-Forget-New

 

The apps that work with Handoff are Mail, Safari, Maps, Messages, Reminders, Calendar, Contacts, Notes, Pages, Numbers and Keynote.

 

 

Step 1
Select Apple Menu > About This Mac > System Report. Click on Bluetooth to see if Handoff is supported
handoff1_yosemite

 

 

Step 2
Turn on Bluetooth on your Mac (via System Preferences) and on your mobile device (via Settings)

Step 3
Turn on Handoff on your Mac (System Preferences > General and check on Allow Handoff Between this Mac and your iCloud Devices) and on your mobile device (Settings > General > Handoff)

Step 4
When Handoff is activated, compatible apps will be displayed at the left-hand side of the Dock when they have been opened on another device

handoff2_yosemite

 

 

 

 

 

Beware-New

 

If Handoff is not working, try turning both devices off and on and do the same with Bluetooth. Also, try logging out, and then back in, to your iCloud account on both devices.

 

 

 

Want to know more?

For the complete macOS Sierra guide, all in the trusted In Easy Steps style, click here. In full-colour and straightforward, jargon-free language, macOS Sierra in easy steps covers the essentials of the operating system that runs the stylish Mac desktop and laptop computers. This primer will get you up and running with your Mac in no time.

Cool Scratch Projects 5 Star review – I Programmer

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

We’re huge fans of Scratch Programming here at In Easy Steps, and we love to hear positive views and user feedback – on all of our titles!
Cool Scratch Programming in easy steps, released in August 2016 has been given a 5 Star review from I Programmer and reviewer Harry Fairhead. Read on to find out his thoughts…

9781840787146

 

Rating: 5
Reviewer: Harry Fairhead

“Scratch – an easy language to learn but what do you do next?

“One very good choice is to buy a copy of Cool Scratch Projects. I can’t promise that you will like all of them, but you should find enough to inspire you to create something. The problem is that it is easy to get started with Scratch, but even though you might know how it works you need to have seen the sorts of things that you can do with seemingly unpromising facilities. ”

 – Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps is excellent in this respect, as all the projects are fully illustrated and described. There are free downloads and other resources available on our website, and also neat stuff including videos showing the final results!

Harry continues…

“Really all there is to say is what the projects are and how exciting – which is of course a subjective thing.   The second project is Gribbet!, a challenge to conduct a chorus of frogs. Next we have a Drum Machine, a more obvious idea but one that is likely to attract its share of noisy wannabe drummers.

“The next few projects are 3D. Using red and green glasses, included with the book you can create graphics that look 3D. How you react to the projects depends on how much you like the 3D. I can well imagine that beginners would love it.  . . . The important thing about these three projects is that it gives you a clear idea how to create 3D effects and you could easily be creative and modify other projects to include elements of 3D.

“Project 8 and 9 is a 3D Maze Explorer. This doesn’t rely on the red and green glasses, but instead creates a perspective display of the walls of the maze. It is a classic game and it is nice to see it included.

“The final two big projects are slightly different. Sprites, Cameras, Action! makes use of a Raspberry Pi camera and Scratch to create stop motion videos. If you have a Pi then this is probably the most exciting project in the book. If you don’t have a Pi then it’s a good reason to get one. Project 11 is called Super Wheelie and it’s a ScratchJr project which runs on Android and iPads.

“Overall this is a good book – motivating, in full color and with plenty to encourage the beginner. If you are a teacher then you could do worse than to get a copy and “borrow” the ideas. If you are using Scratch on your own, not only will it give you something to do with your new skill, it will help you invent even more things to do.”

5stars-600x201

 

Thanks Harry – we’re glad you enjoyed Cool Scratch Projects in easy steps!

Read the full review here: http://www.i-programmer.info/bookreviews/14-other-languages/10361-cool-scratch-projects-in-easy-steps.html

Also, check out the 5 Star Scratch Programming review by Lucy Black

Solving the String Problem in C++ Programming!

Written by In Easy Steps Team on . Posted in News

An extract from C++ Programming in easy steps, 5th edition

A problem arises with string variables when you need to convert them to a different data type, perhaps to perform arithmetical operations with those values. As the string object is not a native C++ data type a string variable value cannot be converted to an int or any other regular data type by casting.

The solution is provided by the C++ <sstream> library that allows a stringstream object to act as an intermediary, through which string values can be converted to a numeric data type, and numeric values can be converted to a string data type. To make this ability available to a program, the library must be added with an #include <sstream> directive at the start of the program.

Values can be loaded into a stringstream object with the familiar output stream << operator that is used with cout statements. Contents can then be extracted from a stringstream object with the >> input stream operator that is used with cin statements.

In order to re-use a stringstream object, it must first be returned to its original state. This requires its contents to be set as an empty string and its status bit flags to be cleared.

convert.cpp

Step 1
Start a new program by specifying the C++ library classes to include, and a namespace prefix to use
#include <string> // Include string support. #include <sstream> // Include stringstream support.
#include <iostream>
using namespace std ;

Step 2
Add a main function containing a final return statement and declaring two initialized variables to be converted
int main()
{
string term = “100” ;
int number = 100 ;
// Add more statements here.
return 0 ;
}

Step 3
In the main function, insert statements to declare an integer variable, string variable, and a stringstream object
int num ; // To store a converted string.
string text ; // To store a converted integer.
stringstream stream ; // To perform conversions.

Step 4
Next, use the stream output operator to load the initialized string value into the stringstream object
stream << term ; // Load the string.

Hot-Tip-New_cropped

 

Notice how the stringstream object’s str() function is used here to reset its contents to an empty string.

 

 

Step 5
Use the stream input operator to extract content from the stringstream object into the uninitialized integer variable
stream >> num ; // Extract the integer.

A non-empty stringstream object has bit flags indicating its status as good, bad, eof, or fail – these should be cleared before re-use by the stringstream object’s clear() function, as demonstrated here.

Step 6
Perform arithmetic on the integer and output the result num /= 4 ;
cout << “Integer value: ” << num << endl ;

Step 7
Reset the stringstream object ready for re-use
stream.str(“”) ; // Empty the contents.
stream.clear() ; // Empty the bit flags.

Step 8
Now, use the stream output operator to load the initialized integer value into the stringstream object
stream << number ; // Load the integer.

Step 9
Use the stream input operator to extract content from the stringstream object into the uninitialized string variable
stream >> text ; // Extract the string.

Step 10
Perform concatenation on the string and output the result
text += “ Per Cent” ;
cout << “String value: ” << text << endl ;

Step 11
Save, compile, and run the program to see the converted output values

 
067-1[convert]

 

 

9781840787573

Want to know more?

For the complete C++ Programming guide, all in the trusted In Easy Steps style, click here. In full-colour and straightforward, jargon-free language, C++ Programming in Easy Steps will teach you how to install a free C++ compiler so you can quickly begin to create your own executable programs by copying the book’s examples. It demonstrates all the C++ language basics before moving on to provide examples of Object Oriented Programming (OOP).