Google Makes Remote Desktop Access Easier

I am often asked to help friends and family with their computer or software problems. Some of you may be in a similar situation. It can be very frustrating to help over the phone. Often, the easiest way to help is to take over their computer and make the necessary changes.

Chrome Remote Desktop

Remote access to another computer has been available in various forms for some time. Now, Chrome has a new solution in the form of Chrome Remote Desktop, which allows you to control another computer (or give access to yours) via a simple website.

In the past, using Chrome to grant access to a desktop involved both parties downloading an app from the Chrome Web Store, and navigating a clunky, dated interface. Now, parties need only visit a website, where one person sets up the tool by generating an access code to be used by the other person to log in.

The Importance of Strong Passwords

strong passwords

A couple of weeks ago, I was teaching a class on Cyber Security. I always talk about the requirement of using strong passwords. Here is the slide I use:

The most common answers to “Which is a more secure password?” are the second password, which is correct – to a point. Yes, it is a much more complicated password, but you will not be able to remember it, so you will write it down. The first password is complicated, harder to hack, and easier to remember.

During my presentation, there were several questions about passwords and password management options. This is why I thought it was worth addressing this topic again.

PowerPoint Presenter Coach Helps You Give Better Presentations

In a previous issue of TechTips, I talked about the power of PowerPoint Designer. Microsoft has added a few other features to PowerPoint that will help make your presentation better.

Presenter Coach

PowerPoint Presenter Coach

Microsoft is adding an artificial intelligence-powered assistant to PowerPoint called Presenter Coach. This tool is designed to help improve people’s presentations. The new feature appears during a rehearsal mode for PowerPoint slides and offers feedback on your presentation skills by listening to audio from your computer’s microphone. Presenter Coach pop-up tips provide feedback about pacing and filler words, so you’re not muttering or stuttering through a presentation. It also helps presenters be more inclusive with their language, with suggestions like police officer instead of policeman.

If you swear during a presentation, it will suggest that you don’t use profanity, and it will even highlight culturally insensitive phrases or alert you if you’re just lazily reading off the slides. PowerPoint will then generate a report with metrics about how well you’ve done in your rehearsal. Microsoft says it’s adding this feature because it has “received feedback from educators, students, and customers that people want an easy way to practice their presentations to improve their public speaking abilities.”

Create Professional Slide Layouts with PowerPoint Designer

PowerPoint continues to be the tool of choice for many in the business world for creating presentations. So, with just a little bit of work, your presentations can look much better than just a series of bullet points.

PowerPoint Design Ideas

One way to stand out is to use the PowerPoint Morph Transition.

Another way to make your presentations stand out is to learn to use the new PowerPoint Design Ideas.

PowerPoint Design Ideas

The PowerPoint Designer improves slides for Office 365 subscribers by automatically generating design ideas to choose from. While you’re adding content on a slide, Designer works in the background to match that content to professionally designed layouts.

PowerPoint Design Ideas is a subscriber-only, Office 365 feature. If you don’t see the Design Ideas, the PowerPoint Designer toolbar button, or you don’t see certain features described here, then you might not have access.

Create an Alexa Skill for Your Organization with Alexa for Business Blueprints

The below quote comes from the introduction of the Voice Computing Risk Advisory created by the ACT Changing Nature of Risk workgroup.

Alexa Skill Blueprint Landing Page

“The ACT Changing Nature of Risk workgroup feels that Voice Computing, also known as Conversational Computing, is the next major step in user interfaces. It is now changing the way people interact with and use computers.

“The advent of mobile technology added new users and required a redesign of existing processes. Voice Computing will require similar modifications to create voice friendly platforms and services. New services that were not thought of will become common. Probably the most significant new service will be conversational commerce.”

We continue to see the rapid adoption of various smart speaker options, including Amazon Echo/Alexa, Google Home, and Apple HomePod. Based on several recent reports the multiple Amazon Echo/Alexa devices controls about 70% of the market.

Your organization should be experimenting with how to incorporate smart speakers into your marketing and operations. Fortunately, Amazon is making it easy to get started with Alexa for Business Blueprints.

Alexa for Business Blueprints allows a business to publish private skills to their organization within minutes and without writing a single line of code.