Saturday, 8 June 2013

Simple computer tips – the tab key

Do you remember typewriters? Most had a tab function that allowed the carriage to move to pre-determined columns when the tab key was hit. Some had pre-determined tab settings (the columns that would be used) others had complicated mechanical devices to adjust the columns. The tab function on PCs is similar - but more sophisticated. There are two main uses of the tab key. One is similar to the typewriter tab - more of this tomorrow - but the other is slightly different but very useful. How often do you enter multiple fields - for example your e-mail address followed by a password? You can use the mouse pointer and click on successive fields to achieve this but the tab key is much quicker. Once you have completed entering you e-mail address, pressing tab will take the cursor to the next entry field.

By the way, the term “field” is used to describe the places on a form or similar where you enter some information.

Have a go at tabbing between the fields in the example below. You can enter your details but nothing happens to them on the blog!

First name:
Last name:
Phone number:

Another place that this can be used is when writing a new e-mail. You have to move the cursor between the address fields (the addresses of people to whom you are sending the e-mail) the subject line and the body of the e-mail. There’s no need to move the mouse and click between these: this is much quicker because your hands are already on the keyboard.

Have a go at tabbing between the entry fields on an e-mail

1 comment:

Mike Lowson said...

You have describe the start knowledge of the computer in the post
"Simple computer tips – the tab key". Looking forward to see your new article.
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