Skype-Manual-abridge.. - Riderwood

Skype for Members of the
Riderwood Community
Arseni Verner
December 10, 2012
1 В В Table of Contents
1. Preface – page 5
2. Introduction – page 6
3. Download – page 7
4. Install – page 11
5. Create an account – page 14
6. Login – page 17
7. Calibrate – page 18
8. Find contacts – page 22
9. Make a call – page 26
10. Send a text message – page 31
11. Transfer a file – page 34
12. References – page 36
13. Glossary – page 37
2 В В 14.
Not all elderly people are familiar with and know how to use Skype. They have
difficulties and psychological barriers. However, they can benefit from using Skype.
They can communicate with more ease, depth, and economy than with otherwise. This
topic is fairly new, and people will be happy if I help them.
My surveys received responses from 35 people. 34 have relatives or friends they wish
to communicate with, and 31 wish to use Skype to do so, but only 15 already use it at
all, while just 2 people use it as their main method of communication. This illustrates
the gap between desire and ability to use Skype.
However, the research also showed that people mostly needed help with Skype itself
(23), or the microphone (10) or web camera (12), while nobody needed help with a
mouse or keyboard. This greatly simplifies the task of educating people on how to use
I have a solid knowledge of computers, which I can pass on to others. But I also have
relatives overseas who have trouble using computers, as well as the experience
teaching them to overcome their difficulties, so I can empathize. This puts me in a good
position to write a manual like this.
My research shows that over 88% of the audience is interested in using Skype to
communication, so they manual will be extremely relevant.
Also, 17 people wanted the manual as an email attachment, 13 people wanted the
manual as a hardcopy, and only 6 people wanted to download the manual from the
website. Thus, we should worry about both physical and electronic readability.
3 В В Introduction
This is a manual to help you use Skype, a free program that lets you communicate with
friends and relatives in various ways. Similar to a phone, it can transmit audio; in
addition, it has the option of displaying video images captured by your computer's web
camera. It makes numerous other things easy, including talking to the younger
generation, avoiding huge phone bills for international communication, sending files,
text messages, or voice mails, and holding group calls with multiple people at the same
The manual will first describe how to get Skype working on your computer, including the
steps of downloading, account setup, installation, calibration, and contact management.
Then, the manual will instruct on various uses of Skype, including calls, text messages,
and file transfers.
If you already have Skype, feel free to jump to whichever part of Skype you need help
with. Otherwise, this manual will describe every step you need in order to succeed.
4 В В Step 1: Download
First, you have to go to the Skype website. Open your browser and go to If you have an electronic version of the manual, you may simply be
able to click on the hyperlink to go there. You should see something similar to this:
Click on “downloads” near the top of the webpage.
5 В В Step 1: Download
Your browser should direct you to a page that looks like this:
Select the device you are using - for example, “Computer” for a desktop or laptop,
“Mobile” for a phone, and “Tablet” for iPad-like devices.
Then, scroll down on the next page.
6 В В Step 1: Download
Here, select the operating system you have. This will usually be “Windows” or
“Macintosh” for a computer, and “iOS” or “Android” for a mobile phone. Most of the
time, the big green button will automatically let you pick the version that is right for you.
7 В В Step 1: Download
Now, you will see another screen with the actual download, which will depend on your
browser or operating system. For the Firefox browser in Windows, you will see the
image shown here.
You can then click “Save File”, and save the file where you like. You can access it from
the browser, or from your operating system. This is an “installer” file, which will install
Skype when you run it.
A program named SkypeSetupFull.exe will show up on your screen. You must run it.
8 В В Step 2: Install
Next, we can move on to the step of installing Skype.
You can choose a language from the drop-down list if you want, but if English is your
language, you can just click the “I agree – next” button on the bottom right to go on to
the next step.
9 В В Step 2: Install
Skype may offer you some things before it installs itself. You may want to decline some
of them. To do so, click the box with a check on the left side, so that there is no check
in the box, and the box is empty. For example, the above screen offers to change your
web browser’s home page, which you do not want. It may also offer a “Click on Call”
option, which will allow you to make Skype calls directly from your web browser.
Finally, Skype will install itself. It may take a few minutes, so please wait until it finishes.
10 В В Step 3: Create an Account
Once you’ve installed Skype, it immediately comes up with this screen, which asks you
to either provide your username and password, or create an account. If you are a first
time user, you must create an account. To do so, click on “Create an account.”
11 В В Step 3: Create an Account
To create an account, you have to visit If
you previously clicked “Create an account,” then
you are already here. Then, you have to provide
following information:
1) name and email
2) country and language
3) Skype name and password
4) the verification code
This on the left picture shows the form that you
see on the web. Do not worry that you do not see
the details. All important fields are marked by red
and numbered and then presented in the next
page in a large format. You see enlarged fields
numbered 1, 2, 3, 4 that you must fill. The other
fields can be left blank, if you value your own
After you are done, simply click the big green
button on the bottom left of the webpage to
12 В В Step 3: Create an Account
1. First, type in your first and last name, then type in your email address twice. From
the surveys, it is assumed that you already have an email address.
2. Now you have to select your country and language.
13 В В Step 3: Create an Account
3. Choose a Skype Name to uniquely identify you. A last name followed by a birth year
is a common choice, for example, thompson1934. Then, type in a password twice. It
has to be at least 6 characters, and has to have a letter and a number. Try to think of
something that is easy to remember but hard to guess.
4. Most of web sites require security check or code entering to make sure this is a
person and not a robot uses resources. Here you see an example of this code written
as letters or numbers. Check the “by email” box and type in the code. If you have
trouble reading it, you can click the listen button to have it spoken to you.
14 В В Step 4: Login
Once you’ve created an account, you must log in.
Type in your username and password and click sign in.
15 В В Step 5: Calibration
When signing in for the first time, after pressing continue, you will see a screen where
you can calibrate your microphone and webcam. Calibration will allow you to calibrate
your uncalibrated microphone, speaker, and webcamera.
First off is the actual calibration. Here we make sure our microphone, webcamera, and
speakers are working. If you have a laptop, your microphone, camera, and speakers
are possibly built in.
If you don’t have headphones, choose speakers from the list under “Speakers”, instead
16   of the default “Headphones”. If the “Test Sound” button is playing some sounds, then it
is working.
If you don’t have an external microphone, try selecting “internal” from the list. The bar
under the list should flash green when you speak or make some sounds.
And if you don’t have an external camera, try choosing “internal webcamera” if it is not
already selected. You should see an image of your surroundings if it is working. If you
yourself are not in the image, then try moving yourself or your camera. For your
convenience, a stuffed toy was placed in front of the camera as an example.
17 В В Step 5: Calibration
During calibration, you also have the option of taking a picture of yourself to use it for
your profile, by clicking Continue. We will cover how to do this, but you can skip it by
clicking Add Later. Be aware that the profile picture you use will be visible to everyone.
If you chose to continue, you will see this screen.
You can use the bar under the picture to adjust its
zoom level. The results of this can be seen to the
18 В В Step 5: Calibration
Now we are done, and can go to the main screen. This screen will show you how your
profile appears to everyone on the internet.
19 В В Step 6: Find Contacts
Now you are ready to find your best friend, relative, or your grandchild assuming they
have skype account already. Picture below shows the main screen. You click on
“Contacts” and now it has only “Test Service”, no real people there yet.
For demonstration purposes we will be using two different accounts to show how you
can communicate between people. One account has name “Jonathan Smith” and
another name is “Henry Jackson”. We call ourselves “ Henry Jackson” and our contact
name that we will be searching for is “ Jonathan Smith”.
20 В В Step 6: Find Contacts
Click “Contacts” at the top of the Skype main screen, then “Add a Contact.”
The following window should pop up:
This is the contact adding screen. Enter the name in the field called “Full name.” We
use “Jonathan Smith” as an example, which gives us over 200 matches!
Using someone’s real name (Full name) can be tricky, because there may be multiple
people with the same name, and you are probably trying to add only one of them. So
what do we do?
It is easiest to add someone if you already know their Skype account (Skype name).
Skype accounts are unique (there can be no two accounts with the same name), and
usually belong to a specific person. If you don’t know their account, an email address or
phone number is usually a better fallback than someone’s real name. For the same
reason, try to use a cell phone number rather than a home or work phone number.
21 В В Enter the Skype Name, instead of their name, which in our case is jonathan_smith35.
This is a unique Skype name and can be found immediately. Then, just click on “Add”.
You can also write a message when inviting someone. After you add a new contact,
close the contact window. Back to the main window we go!
The person who you sent an invitation will receive a notice that shows “contact request”.
In our case, “John” sees the invite message that was sent by “Henry.”
“Ignore” will delete the invite without doing anything, and “Block” do the same while
preventing further invites.
“Profile” will bring up this window, with Henry’s information.
“Add to contacts” will approve the Henry’s invitation, adding you to each other’s contact
lists. Now you are ready to contact Jonathan Smith.
22 В В Step 6: Find contacts
Now that you’ve added Jonathan Smith, you can see his profile picture. Jonathan Smith
is another account I’ve used for this manual. For his picture, I decided to use a portrait
by Joseph Ducreux, an 18th century French painter.
23 В В Step 7: Calls
After all your efforts, you can finally make a call.
To make a call, start by selecting the person you want to call on the left. Then, click the
Call button.
This screen shows that you are connecting to the person, in this case Jonathan Smith.
Jonathan Smith has to pick up the call in order for you to connect. The crossed-out
camcorder shows that your webcam is not used for this call.
However, you can click on it on any time to enable the camera; then, this will be
symbolized by the camcorder not being crossed out.
24 В В Step 7: Calls
This is what Jonathan sees. He has to click answer to pick up the call, or he can click
decline to not pick up the call.
25 В В Step 7: Calls
This is what it looks like once you are connected. The video shows either a static image
of the other person’s profile picture, or a video stream from their webcamera. Plus, it
shows the time. Jonathan Smith will see your stuff-toyed profile picture.
You also can bring up the menu from the previous image by mousing over the bottom of
the image.
26 В В Step 7: Calls
After you finish your first call, you get a survey. You can answer if you want, or click
Cancel at the bottom right if you don’t feel like answering.
27 В В Step 7: Calls
Your conversation history now shows that you made the call. The same goes for the
person you just called.
28 В В Step 8: Text Messages
You can send text messages in Skype.
You can send someone a text message by typing in the box.
29 В В Step 8: Text Messages
Then, press enter to send the message. The sent message will appear in your history
of communications with the person. You can always see it later.
30 В В Step 8: Text Messages
The message you sent will also appear in their communication history with you. It's that
31 В В Step 9: File Transfers
You can also use Skype to easily send computer files to your friends or relatives.
Click the (+) to bring up the menu shown, then click Send File.
32 В В Step 9: File Transfers
The file dialog will come up, allowing you to select a file. Select the file you want, and
press open. Now, you have to wait for the other person to accept transfer. This current
status of the file will show up in your history.
The other person gets a dialog that shows that they are receiving the file. They have to
click OK to accept the file, at which point they also get a dialog to choose where to
save. Skype warns them just in case, because certain types of files can be dangerous.
Now, Windows brings up a dialog to save the file. Once they choose where to save the
file, the transfer begins. This may take a while, depending on the connection speed and
the file size.
After the transfer is successful, Skype shows this in the history. Also, the receiver can
click “Show in folder” in the history in order to view the file.
33 В В Bibliography Microsoft, 2012. December 10, 2012. <>
Joseph Ducreux (Getty Museum). The J. Paul Getty Museum. December 10, 2012.
How Browsers Work. Garsiel, Tali. December 10, 2012.
Technical Manuals for the Elderly – Can Controlled Language Principles Help?
Christoffersen , Ellen and Margrethe H. MГёller.
Horen, F. M. <
Tips for Writing User Manuals. Phil Hodgson, 2007. December 10, 2012.
Write it Right. FDA, 1993.
Downs, Trudy. Personal interview. November 2012.
Verner, Arseni. “Skype Survey – University of Maryland.” Survey. November 2012.
Kogan, Serge. Connecting Generations through Video Calls. July 2010.
Trapasso, Clare. “Senior centers turn to Skype to connect the elderly with their
families.” November 27, 2011.
34 В В Glossary
Address – the location of a webpage on the internet
Application – a type of executable file that is meant to carry out a particular function
Browser – an application used to view webpages
Download – to obtain a file from the internet
Executable File – a file that contains instructions for the computer to do something
File – a collection of data on the computer that has a name
Installer – an executable file that is used to place an application on the computer
iPhone and Android – types of phones that can run Skype
iPad – a type of tablet computer
Link – a part of a webpage that makes your web browser go to a different address, after
you click on it
Run – a verb meaning to activate the instructions contained in an executable file
Scroll Down – to move the bar on the right side of a window, in order to view a different
part of a document or webpage
Skype – an application that allows you to communicate with people in various ways
Text Message – a message that contains written words
Voice Mail – a message that contains a sound file
Web camera – a special kind of camera that is part of, or attached to, a computer
Webcam – a shorter way of saying web camera
Webpage – a type of document on the internet that is viewed with a web browser
35 В В