Classes in IT in Girona - Classes de informatica (PC and Rasberry Pi) en Girona, Catalonia, Spain - by Steve Brown

This is one of a pair of websites about teaching art and computing in English in Girona and the area around the city. The art website is www.girona-art.es

This website is part of Mezcla.biz. Click on the logo on the left to go to the home page where you will find contact details.

Classes are in English with some Castellano if something needs clarifying. I'm sorry I don't speak Catalan but here is a chance to improve your English and knowledge of computing at the same time! (unless you are already English-speaking!)

Classes (actually that makes them seem too formal, let's call them workshops) will be held in the bar at Hotel Peninsular in Carrer Nou, Girona (with free WiFi) between 4pm and 6pm on Tuesdays but, if this is inconvenient, we can have sessions on Saturday mornings but we have to choose a time when the bar is not too busy. Or we could choose another location. But - a big but - there will also be classes online with videos specially shot for you. But you will determine the schedule.

Maybe you are frustrated with your e-mail account (I know two people who have lots of trouble with attachments, for example), maybe you want to learn more about Word, Excel, Photoshop and Illustrator. We can also cover web design: learn about HTML, CSS and Javascript. How to create a website. These are all areas where I have experience so, although I don't have any formal teaching qualifications, I have lots of experience which I want to share with you. I am more familiar with Windows than with the Apple operating system but I have used the iPod and iPad. Maybe time for me to learn something as well! (when am I not learning something new?)

Learn about net etiquette and how best to use e-mail. Send attractive e-mails using HTML. So many things to talk about!

The internet: Lots to talk about there! What are "cookies" that we've read so much about recently? Are they dangerous?

Learn writing code with the Rasberry Pi single-board computer in Girona. The board is less than €40 and can be purchased online from Element14, part of Farnell Components in the UK.

I haven't started workshops yet but, if you need one-to-one help with anything that is holding you up and costing you time, then please get in touch.

 

 

The steps will be as follows:

You dictate the agenda. Tell me the things that frustrate you or the software you want to learn about.

Maybe you just have a specific problem and only want to come for that one thing. Well, that's ok!

I subscribe to The Oldie, it was a Christmas present. If you don't know, it's a magazine published in the UK for old people (I suppose that's rather obvious). The regular column Superbyways presumably is supposed to teach old people with withering brains how to use computers but it refers to them as "... the wretched things..." (meaning the computers). That is truly awful. Computers are brilliant. I use one for large parts of the day for art, writing, graphic design (but not for tweeting or chatting). It's really sad to see such negativity. I often say that it's not up to people to learn how to use computers, it's the other way round. And computers, especially with touch screens have gone a long way towards that goal.

I know it's an obvious analogy but it's like driving a car. You don't need to know how the gearbox works and what colour the oil is but I hope you don't expect to jump in and press the pedal on the right and that everything will be fine - you need to learn how to drive the thing. But that doesn't require a knowledge of fuel injection.

But many people ignore the same principle with computers, especially with e-mail, and they just muddle through. That's where I come in. You don't need to know how they work; just how they can work for you. You don't need to learn about "technology" - an over-used word. That's my job as an engineer, not yours.

If you want to know a little about my background and what I think about computing, have a look at a piece I wrote for my blog about Bill Gates and me!

My company in the UK was Applied Microsystems and I first started writing software in the late 1970s, a year or two before the first IBM PC arrived on the scene in 1981.

I love to teach..... maybe you!

 

Teaching IT with video:

I will be using my video camera and computer screen recorder to demonstrate functions clearly online. I am using ACA Screen Recorder to record to video everything happening on screen and I will accompany this with a commentary. There is nothing new in this, of course, but this has two important features:

It is not publicly viewable (it will be here on the website not on YouTube).

It is linked to things we talk about when we meet.

Missing Manuals

One thing that frustrates me is that most software comes with the instructions online. I can understand why the supplier does this. It saves on shipping - well, there is no shipping because much software these days is simply downloaded. And it enables the company to update the manual when there is a new software release.

But it is slow and it involves clicking between the manual and the application. Go to the manual and you can lose the view of your work in progress.

The result of this is that many people skip the instructions and just pile in. But one misses so much. I print my own bound paper manuals and I can help you do the same. I can also recommend the "Adobe Classroom in a Book" series. Flipping through the pages of a manual over a coffee, I discover many features which otherwise I would have missed.

The Arrow logo was designed by my cousin Richard Cowper-Brown in the UK a few years ago who was sure he had seen it somewhere else but I haven't seen it elsewhere and I haven't received angry letters from arrow-owners. So, apart from the Mezcla logo at the top of this page, that's my other logo which I use as the repeating background for this website!

 

       
   

An important question: How much?

I base my time on an hourly rate of €20 but this would be shared if there is a group.

Even with one person, I'm sure I can save you loads of time..... and money!