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Basic Internet Hints

Tips to help make the most of your time online

By Emma Kae - 11th January 2001 - Back to News

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It seems the hectic rush to complete three days work in 24 hours is the everyday goal for most people.

The Internet is promoted as being a fast, simple, efficient, convenient method of getting many of these jobs done. However, this can only be true if you have a fair idea of how to use it to its full advantage and avoid the risks that could in fact set you behind.

In a generation of people with high levels of motivation but very short attention spans, there is a need for eduction on ways to make effective use of on-line time. Here are a few quick pointers to help you on your way…

  • Have a fair idea of what you are setting out to achieve before you open your browser. This can help prevent wasting time wandering aimlessly through the web.

  • Write down the addresses of websites you found useful for future use. E-mail friends the URL for sites they may find of interest and ask them to return the favour.

  • When searching, take time to plan key words to search under before you get on-line. Consider exactly what you are looking for and search accordingly.

  • Learn the value of adding signs to your queries to narrow the response field. For example, when searching for Holden racing cars type +holden +racing +cars to find that exact response; “holden racing cars” to find those three words interlinked on a page. Click here for powersearch hints.

  • Try using search engines like Dogpile which incorporate the results from many major search engines at once. This can save you time as only the best matches to your query are displayed.

  • A fast method of hunting down the results you need is by employing a real-time person to do the searching for you. Simply type in exactly what you are looking for and they will do their best to find precisely what you need.

  • Know the basics, from domain suffix codes to hotkeys. The time you spend up-front to learn these simple shortcuts will be relinquished tenfold. There are several Internet courses, which can help you on your way.

  • If you are getting e-mail or newslists you do not want, stop wasting time endlessly deleting each new message and unsubscribe. If your attempt to cancel is ignored, go straight to Cancel-It, a third-party service whose cancellation requests are taken very seriously.

  • When purchasing on-line, be sure to only exchange credit card details with companies who guarantee the highest security against hacking and transfer interruption. Don’t risk leaving this information in the hands of amateurs.

  • Where possible, arrange to send your details by facsimile transmission instead. You have nothing to lose by asking if this is viable. Most companies will appreciate your purchase and be more than willing to accommodate your demand.

  • Where alternative transmission is not possible, set up an account solely for internet use with no link to your other funds. When purchasing something online, put in the exact amount required just before the sale goes through.

  • There are, of course, many other hints that can save you valuable time you could be spending on other things. If you have one to add, or something to say about the tips above, why not post something below in our talkback section?


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