Microsoft Windows 8

The Windows 8 operating system is the newest member of the Windows family. It is different than earlier Windows releases as much for what it does not change as for what it does change. That is, the features that users and IT pros loved about Windows 7 are still there in Windows 8; just better. The same keyboard shortcuts, management tools, security features, and deployment options are available in Windows 8. But in many cases, Windows 8 improves them in intuitive and significant ways.

Of course, everyone is talking about the new user interface in Windows 8: the Start screen, the modern looking windows graphics, and so on. These are not replacements for the desktop, and it is not an either-or choice that you have to make. For desktop apps, the same desktop that you used in Windows 7 is still in Windows 8. You can still pin apps to the taskbar, pin files to those apps, and so on. The keyboard and mouse work the same way as it did before on the desktop. But Windows 8 uses a Start screen instead of the tiny Start menu. The most obvious benefit is that there is more real estate available and so apps can display dynamic, live information on their tiles (icons) to bring the latest information to you at a single glance.

Windows 8 also introduces Windows 8 apps. These are full screen, immersive apps that provide a different experience than you might be used to with traditional desktop apps. They do not have chrome. App commands (menu items) only appear when you need them. Importantly, Windows 8 and Windows 8 apps provide a first-class touch experience, so you can swipe, flick, and use other intuitive gestures to get around them.

Take a quick look around Windows 8 to see what it can do for you. Or, better yet, give us a call for more information. For business leaders and IT managers, we can show you how Windows 8 can be configured to give you the same Desktop look and feel as Windows 7.

Microsoft Office 2013

New Office Features

New features include a new read mode in Microsoft Word, a presentation mode in Microsoft PowerPoint and improved touch and inking in all of the Office programs. Microsoft Word can also insert video and audio from online sources as well as the capability to broadcast documents on the Web. Word and PowerPoint also have bookmark-like features which sync the position of the document between different computers.

Other features of Office 2013 include:

  • Flatter look of the Ribbon interface and subtle animations when typing or selecting (Word and Excel)
  • A new visualization for scheduled tasks in Microsoft Outlook.
  • Remodeled start screen
  • New graphical options in Word
  • Objects such as images can be freely moved; they snap to boundaries such as paragraph edges, document margin and or column boundaries
  • Online picture support with content from, and Flickr
  • Ability to return to the last viewed or edited location in Word and PowerPoint
  • New slide designs, animations and transitions in PowerPoint 2013
  • Support for and in Outlook
  • Support for integration with Skype, Yammer and SkyDrive
  • IMAP special folders support

Unlike past versions of Office, retail copies of Office 2013 are not made available on a DVD. Retail copies of Office 2013 and Office 365 subscriptions only contain a product key, and direct users to the Office website to obtain the software.

Office Versions

All traditional editions of Microsoft Office 2013 contain Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote and are licensed for use on one computer. Home & Business is a retail suite that adds Outlook to the core lineup. Standard adds Outlook and Publisher to the core lineup and is only available through volume licensing resellers such as Custom Computer. Professional is a retail suite and includes Outlook, Publisher and Access as well as the core apps. Professional Plus is available through volume licensing only; this suite includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher, Access, InfoPath and Lync.

Call us today to learn which version of Office is best for your business.