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Microsoft OneDrive

Microsoft OneDrive

Tool Summary

MS OneDrive is a file hosting service, like GoogleDrive and Dropbox, included in the Microsoft 365 suite. OneDrive allows you to access, edit, and share files and images from any device you are working from. OneDrive also enables you to share documents and collaborate in real time with others by simply sending a link via email or text.

UMW students, faculty, and staff can access the entire Microsoft 360 Suite, including OneDrive, for free by logging in with a UMW email address and password at login.microsoftonline.com.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free for students and educators; paid personal subscription available
  • Platforms: Python, Microsoft, Android, iOS, node.js, Ruby, php
  • Recommended For: Beginners

Things to know

OneDrive is an incredibly useful file sharing and file storage tool. You can access the files you upload into OneDrive from a web browser or an OneDrive mobile app. OneDrive automatically saves backups of your files to the cloud and automatically syncs them to your other devices. Should your hard drive or SSD fail, you will still have your documents saved in OneDrive, preventing the loss of files. You can also set OneDrive to automatically upload photos and videos from your mobile device so that you never risk losing them (available for both Android and Apple devices).

Getting Started Guide

OneDrive Help and Learning – Almost any question you have about OneDrive can be answered here. This is the Microsoft’s support page for OneDrive.

Beginner’s Guide to OneDrive for Windows – This video shows you how to get started with OneDrive if you are operating from a Windows computer.

Beginner’s Guide to Microsoft OneDrive for Mac – This video shows you how to get started with OneDrive if you are operating from a Mac computer. It also explains why using OneDrive is beneficial for Mac users.

Additional Resources

Designing a Fluent Microsoft OneDrive Mobile Experience – If you plan on using OneDrive on a mobile device this is a wonderful guide.

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

Blender

Blender

Tool Summary

Blender is a powerful 3D graphic design tool that can be used for multiple types of projects including animation, 3D modeling, rendering, video editing and effects, game creation, and more. It is free to download and has numerous editing options.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free
  • Platforms: Mac, Windows, Linux
  • Open Source: Yes
  • Recommended For: Advanced users

Things to Know

It is extremely helpful to have a mouse when using Blender, because it is not designed to work on a trackpad. It is possible to simply use a trackpad, but it is much more doable with a mouse. It will also be helpful if you have a keyboard with a number pad on it, but it is not required; if necessary, you can adjust your settings in Blender to make your number keys act as a number pad.

It may be useful to have a list of Blender hotkeys (commands used by pressing different keys on the keyboard) easily accessible while you’re working.

Blender supports almost any image, video, or 3D file format.

Getting Started Guides

Official Blender 2.90 Manual – This is the official manual on Blender’s website. It is quite lengthy, so it is recommended that you watch the Blender Beginner Tutorial series below.

Blender Beginner Tutorial Series – Blender Guru – In this helpful video series, you learn your way around Blender by making a donut. There are 4 “levels” in total, but the first level will get you started on the basics of 3D modeling.

Additional Resources

List of Blender hotkeys by Blender Guru

Blender vs. Fusion 360

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams

Tool Summary

Microsoft Teams is a communication platform created by Microsoft. It allows users to join teams where they can video chat, message people in channels, store files, and more.

UMW students, faculty, and staff can access the entire Microsoft 360 Suite, including Teams, for free by logging in with a UMW email address and password at login.microsoftonline.com.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free to UMW students, faculty, and staff
  • Platforms: Windows, Linux, macOS, iOS, Android
  • Recommended for: Beginners – it is organized like many other popular chat based programs, like Slack and Discord.

Things to Know

You can access Teams through your browser as well as a desktop or mobile app. You can join more than one team, and within those teams you can access different channels. Some channels are private, oftentimes this is for a group who is completing a specific task. While in your teams you can share images, gifs, send messages, start video calls, share files in Microsoft OneDrive, and more. Teams is also connected to your Outlook calendar, allowing you to create Teams video meetings directly from your calendar.

Getting Started Guides

Getting Started

Microsoft Teams Support

Microsoft Teams Online Forum

Additional Resources

Canva – a graphic design platform to make infographics, social media posts, posters, and more

Cloudconvert – lets you convert almost any file type into an audio, video, or image file

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

WordPress

WordPress

Tool Summary

WordPress is a free, open-source, website building tool, or content management system. With an abundance of themes and the ability to add plug-ins, the possibilities for your website are endless.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free from wordpress.org, paid plans with extra features available at wordpress.com
  • Platforms: Any reliable web browser 
  • Open source
  • Recommended for: Beginners and Advanced users – WordPress sites can be as simple or as complicated as you want to make them.

Things to Know

WordPress is highly customizable, with thousands of different themes and plug-ins that can change the way your site looks and functions, but the basic building blocks of any site are posts and pages. Posts show up in chronological order on your site (like a Twitter or Instagram feed), whereas pages are static.

When writing blog posts, you can adds tags to your posts, or group them in categories to help them be more organized on your site. You can also use categories as menu items on the front page of your website for easier navigation.

When editing a post or a page with WordPress’s block-based editor, Gutenberg, it is easy to add headings, paragraphs, galleries for images, links to other sites, and much more.

Getting Started Guides

WordPress Support

WordPress Learning 

DKC: Building Your First WordPress Site

Additional Resources

Pexels – free stock photos and videos

Pixabay – Photo/Video – free stock photos and videos

Unsplash – free stock photos

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Excel

Tool Summary

Microsoft Excel is spreadsheet software that allows users to input data and create data visualizations. MS Excel is used in almost every workplace around the world, so knowing how to work within the program has many benefits. Excel features include calculation, graphing tools, pivot tables, and so much more.

UMW students, faculty, and staff can access the entire Microsoft 360 Suite, including Excel, for free by logging in with a UMW email address and password at login.microsoftonline.com.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free for students and educators; paid personal subscription available
  • Platforms: PC, Mac, iOs, and Android
  • Recommended For: Beginners – It doesn’t take long to figure out the basic functions of the program and as you gain more skills you’ll be able to do a whole lot more with the program

Things to Know

Many people typically use Excel for organizing information. For example, you could use a spreadsheet to track data and automatically see sums, averages, and totals. You could also take that data set and create a variety of charts so your data is easier to interpret. Or, Excel can be used to simply store and organize data sets.

Getting Started Guide

How to Use Excel: A Beginner’s Guide to Getting Started – Basic walkthrough of how to start working in Excel beginning with opening a spreadsheet, entering and working with data, and saving and sharing your Excel files.

Excel Math Basics: A Beginner’s Guide – Basic walkthrough of how to create working formulas in Excel.

How to Make a Chart or Graph in Excel – Basic overview of how to make a chart of graph in Excel

Additional Resources

10 Excel Functions Everyone Should Know – These are tens skills will help increase your productivity in Excel and are incredibly useful for most Excel users to know.

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

iMovie

iMovie

Tool Summary

iMovie is a free video editing software for Mac devices. It boasts easy to use tools and templates. This program can be used on Mac, iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. It is great for getting started with video editing.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free
  • Platforms: Mac, iOS
  • Recommended For: Beginners – This a great tool to learn video editing, or basic editing, but lacks some advanced features.

Things to Know

iMovie has an abundance of easy to use filters and effects, including the option to use a green screen. You can also edit your sound with ease, without also impacting your video. iMovie comes with built in templates for titles, backgrounds and transitions. It also gives you the option to format your video as a trailer. 

If you are working on a device with a lower processing system, iMovie has the tendency to crash when working with complicated or long videos.

When saving your project, iMovie allows you to easily upload the video directly to Youtube, Facebook, or Vimeo, or to be sent in an email, in addition to saving it as a file.

Getting Started Guides:

How to Use iMovie

iMovie Support by Apple

Additional Resources

Freesound: Free audio files. Most audio files just require you to credit the creator.

Pixabay: Copyright free images and videos.

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

Adobe Premiere Pro

Adobe Premiere Pro

Tool Summary

Premiere Pro is the industry-leading video editing software for film, TV, and the web. You can edit footage, audio, and graphics as well as easily integrate files from Adobe stock. If you are working in Adobe Audition or After Effects you can easily link compositions from those programs into your Premiere project.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Part of Adobe Creative Cloud subscription – 7 day free trial, a monthly fee after that. There is a discount for students
  • Platforms: macOS and Windows 
  • Recommended for: Advanced users – like many Adobe applications this program has a learning curve and may feel complicated at first.

Things to Know

Premiere is organized by using “windows”. The tab you are on will dictate how the windows look in the program. Oftentimes the windows have multiple tabs in themselves, which allows the user to access certain things easily. If you have a lot of material on your timeline you can mark the “in” and “out” points; this tells Premiere you only want to export what is in between those points. One important thing to note is that when exporting a project, you will only be able to export when you are in the “timeline” window.

Getting Started Guides

Getting Started

Adobe Premiere Pro Learn & Support Center

Premiere Pro Community Forum

Additional Resources

Mixkit Templates: free templates for download, specifically for Premiere Pro

Mixkit Video: free stock footage

Incompetech: free music, as long as you give credit to the creator

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word

Tool Summary

Microsoft Word is a word-processor that can create a variety of documents, including resumes, business contracts, instructional documents, and letters.

UMW students, faculty, and staff can access the entire Microsoft 360 Suite, including Word, for free by logging in with a UMW email address and password at login.microsoftonline.com.

Quick Facts

  • Price: free with UMW school email
  • Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS
  • Recommended for: Beginners – the program is fairly intuitive, but finding specific features can be challenging with the abundance of options.

Things to Know

Word is great for text based media, but it also offers many features to help you do more than just write. Within the 9 tabs there are a plethora of options, such as making tables, inserting images, sending emails, adding direct edits with a virtual pen or highlighter, and changing the layout and design of your document. The majority of features people will use are under the “home” tab. It is worth looking through every tab, especially the “review” tab. This is where you can check your spelling and grammar, have Word read your document aloud to you, and check the accessibility – something we highly recommend making a regular habit.

Getting Started Guides

Training Guides

Word Help & Learning

Additional Resources

Dafont: free fonts for download

Font Squirrel: font identifier and downloadable fonts

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

Adobe After Effects

Adobe After Effects

Adobe After Effects is an advanced tool used for creating and compositing videos, motion graphics design, and animation. This tool gives creators the ability to combine different elements like text, video, music, and sound, then add motion to make new compositions that move in artistic and creative ways.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Adobe Cloud Subscription (There is a small monthly fee for Students using your UMW email address, Free On Computers in the HCC)
  • Platforms: Mac and Windows
  • Recommended For: Advanced Users – Great tool for people with any animation, and/or video editing experience, but maybe overwhelming for beginners. Will also be easier to learn with previous Adobe product experiences, such as Adobe Premiere Pro where similar layouts are used.

Things to Know

Adobe After Effects is an extremely powerful creative tool that can be used to help add motion or visual effects to your next video, graphic design, or animation project. One feature includes the ability to change the position, scale, motion path, anchor point, rotation, and opacity of an object. This allows creators to assign different motions and effects to individual elements (for example letters) so they create some type of animation, like letters flying in to create a word. Another great feature on this platform is the vast libary of effects at your disposal. With effects like mirror, blur, perspective, and time you will be able to create amazing effects and illusions for your projects.

Getting Started Guides:

Adobe After Effects Beginner and Advanced Guides

Additional Resources:

Mixkit Video – Free stock video (Some will need attribution)

Pixabay – Photo/Video – Free stock photos and videos. “All content on Pixabay can be used for free for commercial and noncommercial use across print and digital, except in the cases mentioned in “What is not allowed”. Attribution is not required. Giving credit to the contributor or Pixabay is not necessary but is always appreciated by our community. You can make modifications to content from Pixabay.”

4 Techniques For Custom Logo Animation in After Effects

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

PowerPoint

PowerPoint

Tool Summary

Powerpoint is a presentation program developed by Microsoft. The program uses slides to get information across to the audience. Presentations made in Powerpoint can be very complex or very simple. It all depends on how you want the information you are trying to convey to come across.

Quick Facts

  • Price: Free to students – if not a student prices vary
  • Platforms: Mac, Windows, IOS, Android, Widnows10 App, and Web 
  • Recommended For: Beginners

Things to Know

Powerpoint is overall a great presentation tool to use. Did you know that you can add captions to your presentation? Along with captions, Powerpoint gives the capability to check how accessible your slides are. Under the review tab, you can click check accessibility. By doing these things you are making your presentation more accessible to people with disabilities. You can also present your Powerpoint live. This helps with remote presentations you might have for school or work. The slideshow tab is where you can find the button to present live. When clicked it will give you a URL you can share and also a QR code your audience can scan to follow along with you while you are presenting.

Getting Started Guides:

Basic Beginners Guide to Creating a Powerpoint

How to Make Powerpoints More Accessible 

Additional Resources

Powerpoint Templates – Free, easy online access or downloadable 

Unsplash – Free, no permission required photographs

Need Help?

Have questions about this tool? Book an appointment with a DKC consultant!

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