What am I talking about – a vacation?
You are on sabbatical Harold, everyday is a vacation.
Err – actually no.
Over the course of this sabbatical I have been busy doing something almost every day. To either learn a new skill, attempt to network – either online or in the real-world and do the initial phase of my job search. Just like in a regular job, if you don’t take a break for a while, you are not nearly as creative or effective.
It has been too long since I took some down-time and the week after Memorial Day seemed like a great week to take off.
That is what I have been doing so far this week and why there have been no new posts this week, except for this one and why I haven’t be participating in Twitter Chats or other online communities.
I will be back renewed and ready to go for it again next week .
Productivity Suites are probably the tool that almost all of us use almost daily – if we work in an office environment. So what is a productivity suite: the different Word Processor, Spreadsheet, Slideshow combination programs and possibly a note taking application. This post is just going to look at the word processor.
Some that I have used are:
- Microsoft Office – Word (2003, 2007 or 2010) – the standard against which others are measured. Sorry Open Source, Cloud converts and Apple fans, from what I have read, seen and experienced – Word is still the most common word processor used in business, education or government agencies. Ever since it won the Word Processor battle with WordStar back in the 80′s, it has been the dominant one for many years and has not been surpassed yet.
- iWork ’09 Pages – Apple’s alternative which is more of a desktop publisher than a word processor, but is used for both.
- One of the Open Office cadre – free and open source, which will do most everything you want from a word processor.
- Google Documents (now part of Google Drive) – We used extensively in my classrooms over the past two years, its simplicity (quick learning curve) and ability to share with others really set it apart for students and beginning users. It will do 80-85% of what you need to do with a word processor and is improving all the time.
- Zoho Writer – Probably my all time favorite online word processor and if it wasn’t for Google Connect’s capabilities to Word, I would be using it more for my personal use.
- Adobe Buzzword – One of my favorites with a unique tool bar setup, it just never gained a it following.
We all have our favorites, what are yours?
Dirty Little Secret
There is one thing that is a dirty little secrets of word processors (I have used more than couple of the past 30 years), if you have learned one, your skills readily transfer to others.
Most of the terminology is the same and while the icons, labels, where things are located or bells and whistles being used might be slightly different. The majority of word processors are not really all that different from one another, when it comes down to the basics of creating, editing and filing a document.
What I am using now
While my Dell came with Microsoft Office Starter, I found it very limited for my uses and stopped using it. I loaded a copy of Office 2007 that I had laying around the house and began to re-familiarize myself with where everything is.
After 2 years on the Mac (using iWork ’09 and Office for Mac), it took a couple days to remember where things are (especially the more advanced features), but I am back to being comfortable using it again.
I am doing a couple of things differently.
First is that I am using Google Cloud Connect for Word. Here is a link to the Google’s site to describe what it does, but in a nutshell, it creates a copy in Google Docs (now Google Drive) that automatically and updates when you save or sync your document.
Cloud Connect seems to do a pretty good job of keeping your document’s format correct, but you have to send your document into Google Documents for editing, if you are not on your computer and that is where you will run into formatting issues, if you use certain functions.
Backup is Necessary
However, I am less concerned about the formatting than I am having the document saved to the cloud in 2 very separate areas as backups, in case something happens to my hard drive. Both Microsoft and Google’s backup systems are a lot better than my manual backup routines. Fortunately, this strategy also works for Excel and Powerpoint files.
I don’t know about you, but that is the one thing that I really worry about is loosing all of my hard work if something happens to my computer. These two steps are my effort to alleviate those potential issues before they become a problem.
The post title says it all – WHAT A DIFFERENCE A YEAR MAKES!
Yes I used all caps on purpose, because the past year has been one of change in my life and getting my life back.
Now what do I mean by that statement?
One year ago today I had exploratory arthroscopic surgery on my right knee. I had injured it in February 2010 and the initial diagnosis was Osteochondritis Dissecans, which meant that they thought I was going to be a great candidate for knee replacement and the exploratory part was to go in and see how bad it actually was. I won’t lie and say that I wasn’t scared when I went in the hospital that day - I was.
I will be writing a series on the tools that I am using to help me in my job search efforts (not just social media). For the most part these are software or web applications that I either had lying around the house or are available at no cost or with a trial period. Free is good, especially when money is tight, like it is when you are searching for a job.
No I don’t claim to be an expert, but I have used these tools for a while and have a pretty good idea of what they can do to help during a job search.
The first tool in this series is Evernote – also known as my “other” brain. The one that doesn’t forget.
I have used Evernote since April 2008 and found it to be a rare combination of something that is very easy to use and works the way that my mind does or at least I think it does . (more…)
As you have noticed, I have made some very dramatic changes to my blog this afternoon!!!!
I was not feeling comfortable with the image I was projecting with the name “Old Guy Job Search” – not the name itself, because it describes exactly who I am and what I am doing. However, the title just seemed too limiting and as I thought more about it, does it convey the image that I want to portray to readers and potential employers?