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10 tech tips for Google, Instagram and Facebook to get your digital life in order Technology 

10 tech tips for Google, Instagram and Facebook to get your digital life in order

10 tech tips for Google, Instagram and Facebook to get your digital life in order

Remember shortcuts you could enact with a computer keyboard? Using a particular combination of CNTL, ALT and FN, you could quickly scroll through documents, open and close programs, and move elements around.

They still exist, of course. But nowadays, with so many tricks, niches and shortcuts, those special operations look downright quaint. Many operations are well known, and most of them are tiny and frivolous.

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Don’t get me wrong. It’s a lot of fun to find a treasure trove of classic arcade games on your Android device.

Some tricks remain obscure, and they can change your life. You might find yourself using one of these operations every day, but only if you realize it exists. To bring you up to speed, here are 10 of my favorite tech tricks – what they’re for, how to use them and the ways they’ll change your experience.

1. Use your voice instead of typing

Since the dawn of computers, typing was the only way to get business done. Now, you give your fingers a break and dictate notes while you’re walking, reply to messages while you’re cooking, compose a literary masterpiece while you’re in bed – the possibilities are endless.

You don’t even have to download a separate app. Your iPhone or Android keyboard has a built-in voice-to-text feature. Just pull up your phone’s keyboard, tap the mic icon and dictate away.

If your phone’s built-in transcriber is too basic, you can get more features with apps like Dragon Anywhere for iOS and Android, or TranscribeMe, also available for iOS and Android.

You can use Google’s transcriber to dictate documents into Google Docs. Open a new document in Google Docs, and enable Voice Typing from the Tools menu. Then start dictating. Voice Typing recognizes commands like “comma,” “period” and “new paragraph.”

2. Make routines using Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant

Ever wanted to automate a string of tasks with a single command? That’s why Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa are equipped with “Routines.”

For instance, you can say “Alexa, I’m home!” and Alexa can greet you, turn on your living room smart lights, read the daily news then play a specific music playlist.

Or you can say “Alexa, good night” and have her reply back with “sweet dreams,” then lock your doors, set your thermostat to a certain temperature, turn off all your lights and play white noise to lull you to sleep. You can configure scheduled routines and have your virtual assistant perform sets of actions throughout each day.

To create a routine in the Alexa app, go to the menu then tap Routines. Tap the + sign to start a new sequence. Select “When this happens” then choose your trigger. The trigger can be a phrase, a schedule or a motion sensor event. Next, select “Add action” to start building the routine. To wrap it up, select the device you want to trigger the routine from, then tap Create.

For Google Home Routines, tap “Menu” on the upper left corner of your Google Home app. Tap More Settings>>Routines.

Under “When,” tap “Add commands,” enter your trigger phrase then click OK. To add an action, tap “Add action” under “My Assistant should …” If you want to schedule a routine, tap “Set a time and day” under “When” instead.

You can actually post on Instagram through your computer.

3. Post on Instagram from a computer

Instagram has come a long way. The app was originally designed for casual snapshots, always cropped square, that mimicked the Instamatic cameras of decades past. They have long shed those strict parameters, but one thing remains challenging: posting to Instagram from a desktop or laptop.

One way is to first post a photo to another form of social media (such as Facebook or Twitter), then download the photo onto your phone or tablet and then post to Instagram.

But you can also do it directly, using Google Chrome. The process is a little convoluted, but it’s the easiest way to get your high-quality DSLR or mirrorless images onto the platform.

1. Open Chrome.

2. Go to the Instagram website

3. Right-click anywhere on the page

4. Hit Inspect

5. When the new screen appears, hit the little “squares” in the upper-middle, just above all the coding

This should show you the same display you would see on your phone. You can pick which kind of display you’d prefer, including a range of iPhone, Galaxy, Nexus and other devices. You should see the same functions at the bottom, including the “Plus” sign, which will enable you to upload .jpg files from your desktop, or even take a photo.

4. Speed up podcasts

You can speed-read an ebook, and you can scrub through a video. But many podcast listeners don’t realize they can speed up their listening – and because the recording is digital, you don’t lose much fidelity. You’ll have to pay closer attention, but you can zip through a slow episode, or consume a long conversation, without missing a word.

When you listen to a podcast, there is a player at the bottom of the screen. You might have to swipe up to see it. On Apple’s Podcast app, for example, there is a number in the lower-left corner. The default is 1x and this option lets you hear the podcast at normal speed.

Speed listeners can tap this button and change the playback speed to 1 1/2x or 2x. There’s also the option for 1/2x playback speed. I’m not quite sure when you would actually want to listen to a podcast very, very, very slowly, but it’s there if you need it.

5. Crop a screenshot on a Mac

Savvy Mac users have been pressing CMD+Shift+3 for years, which is the shortcut for a full screenshot. But if you want to cut out large sections of that image, either to hide certain parts of your desktop screen or because it’s distracting from what you want to focus on, you can either edit it in an app like Photos or PicMonkey, or you can use this trick.

Hit CMD+Shift+4 and your cursor becomes a +. Click and drag to draw the portion of your screen that you want to capture. Voila! You can skip all the extra editing.

6. Share a YouTube video at a precise point

If you see something in a YouTube video that you want to share at a particular location, you can get a link that takes people directly to that moment.

Click the “Share” button below the video. Look for a checkbox below the link. It will automatically display the time at which you currently have the video stopped.

You can stick with this time or even choose a different time. Next, just copy the link and share it over your preferred social media service or email it to a friend. When someone views the link, the YouTube video will automatically skip right to the point you chose. Handy, huh?….Read More>>>

 

Source:- usatoday

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