First, the past – specifically, letting go of it. Drop some of the unfortunate thinking that’s common out there, and start with a fresh understanding of what “learning computers” is all about.

1. Don’t “think like a computer”. Think like a human!

Getting along with your computer is not about understanding chips and circuits. It’s about understanding the human intentions and decisions of the people who make the machines and software.

2. Don’t use “the computer”. Use applications!

This is the single biggest roadblock I see holding back people who don’t “get” computers. Don’t think in terms of “the computer”; instead, think in terms of applications (also called programs). That change makes all the difference in the world.

3. Don’t try to “know everything”. Know how to find out.

This should come as a welcome guideline to many struggling users: You don’t need to know nearly as much as you may have imagined. As Einstein famously suggested, don’t fill your head with facts; just know how to find things out.

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