Technology has brought with it innovative ideas and concepts that contribute in simplifying life and making communication efficient. Such creations enable societies, businesses, and individuals to shape the society, and contribute to how people respond to threats, and business opportunities. The growth of technology has introduced the use of emails, which are mostly used for communication at work, with customers, suppliers, or even friends. Most of the advancements on the use of emails have resulted due to the high use of internet. Email accounts are free, proactive, accessible, and secure and considered fast and cheap modes of communication.
With the current modernization and use of technology, there is nothing as frustrating as knowing that someone be it a friend, teacher or colleague at work has sent an email, but one does not know how to respond or read. It is even more frustrating when one does not even know how to start off a machine, be it a laptop or CPU, no matter the help available online on how to read and respond to an email. It is embarrassing to seek for assistance from busy lab assistants or even from friends who might be busy working on other projects. This paper describes the process of starting off a computer, accessing an email account, reading and responding to an email.
Turning the computer on does not require a lot of knowledge or skills as one only needs to push the power button on the CPU and the monitor. It is even easy if one is using a laptop as one only needs to press the laptop’s power button. If the monitor has not been turned on, the computer starts, but the screen remains shut. So it is advisable to switch on both the monitor and the CPU.
Depending on the model of the machine, starting up may take a few minutes as the computer goes through the process of setting up, and atomically checking for viruses. If the computer fails to start up properly, the implication may be that it was not started correctly, or the machine has a default.
The computer warms up, and eventually a grey box or a dialogue box pops out of the screen. At this juncture, one should click on the TAB key till the dialogue box is highlighted. For security purposes, some computers request for the username or password of the user. If the computer asks for these details, type your username. Some usernames are configured in cases where the users of the computers are students or the computers belong to the school. If the machine used is privately or personally owned, the username or password requirements may not be necessary.
Once the username has been typed, click on the TAB key and the password window highlights. While typing the password, the typing may not show up as it is a confidential code that is personalized for use by an individual. Once the password is typed, click on ENTER key and the computer will open up your account. It is crucial to note that the computer only allows three attempts for the username and password. If one fails to type the correct username and password, then there is a chance of being locked out of the system. This ensures that hackers are locked out of the system.
At this level, the computer should open up and reveal its desktop arrangement. Several browsers are used to access the internet, and the choice of the browser to use depends on the user. The Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox are the most commonly used browsers due to their simplicity and speed. The steps to access an email account are similar with all the search engines, so it does not matter which one is chosen.
Several email accounts exist, and again it depends on the preference of the user on which one to open. The process of accessing the account is similar whether the email being accesses is G-mail, Yahoo, or Hotmail. So assume the user has a Gmail account; on the location bar, type the address of the account as gmail.com or www.gmail.com. If the account used, is a hotmail account, on the address bar type hotmail.com or www.hotmail.com.
Just like when switching on the computer, a dialogue box pops up requesting for the username and password of the user. Type the correct username on the username box. Click on the TAB key to shift to the password box. Type in the correct password, and press the ENTER key. Within a few seconds, the email account opens showing the INBOX.
Using the left hand mouse button, double click on the INBOX icon. Double clicking requires users to practice as it requires clicking twice within half a second. If the second click is delayed the computer takes it as two separate clicks, and the INBOX might not open. As soon as the computer recognizes a ‘double-click’, the details of the INBOX pop up.
Click on the item or email to read. It is also important to note that there is a difference on how the read emails and new emails are highlighted. The read emails are marked to distinguish them from the new emails. Click on the email, and details or the message together with its sender and subject appear. Reading an email is just like reading any other message as one needs to scroll up and down till the details of the message are captured or understood.
Some emails may also have attachments with them such as photos, files or documents that the sender wants the reader to review. If the email has an attachment, click on the attachment icon. Two options pop up; the view and download option. Some users opt to view a file before downloading it to get a review of its details. To download the file, click on the download icon, the computer requests on the choice of where the user would like the file to be saved. Save the file before downloading it for future use or use when offline.
Just like any other form of communication, replying to an email is optional. However, replying to an email exhibits ones professionalism and ethics. It indicates that the message has been received and shows the reaction of the recipient towards its details. The process of replying to an email is just as simple as receiving. There are two ways of replying to an email; by clicking on the reply icon or the compose icon.
If the user chooses to use the reply option, clicking on the reply icon pops up a separate window with details such as address, subject, body and attachments. The address in this case is automatically picked by the computer, therefore, no need of typing it again. On the subject bar, the user should type what the message entails in a nutshell so that the recipient gets a hint of the message details even before reading it.
The subject of the email is like a notification of the details of the message. The subject should be appealing to both the sender and recipient to attract the recipient in viewing the details of the message. It is of significant importance especially in cases where the recipient receives a lot of emails and has to choose which ones to read or ignore.
Click on the TAB key so that the body of the email can be highlighted. The user has the freedom to type as much as he/she can on the body. Once this is accomplished, click on the send button and the message is sent to the intended recipient.
If the user has no other business in the account, then the next option is to sign out. Signing out ensures that the account is closed, and no hackers can access it unless if they have the username and password. Click on the sign out button, and within some seconds the computer goes back to the dialogue box with the username and password. Click on the close button so that the window is closed. Once this is successfully accomplished, the computer goes back to the desktop. At this point, the user can switch off the machine by clicking on the shut down option found on the start button on the left hand side of the task bar.