Join us as we interview Windows enthusiasts around the world to hear how they’re putting Windows to work for them, and their suggestions for how you can do the same.
Windows Community Enthusiast interviews introduce Windows users to expert Windows users: those who not only use Windows features in their everyday life but also because of their deep belief in the ability of these features to empower, advocate for their adoption.
They have a lot to share: tips and tricks, stories of how they first stepped into the world of Windows use, career trajectories, and advice on how to become a power user. Here, Rohit Langde shares his favorite Windows features , apps, and reasons for staying up to date .*
Windows Community : Thanks for joining us at Windows Community. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Rohit: My name is Rohit Langde, I’m the Editor-in-Chief at WindowsChimp.com, a resource portal for Windows 10 OS. WindowsChimp.com provides Windows 10 end users with tutorials and other learning resources designed to help them gain greater proficiency with all things Windows.
Windows Community : How long have you been invested in all things Windows?
Rohit: I’ve been a tech-enthusiast for a long time: as an early adopter, I’ve been blogging about Windows, offering technology tips, tutorials, and other information since 2007 .
Windows Community : What happened in 2007 to make you interested in blogging about Windows?
Rohit: Prior to 2007, we didn’t have Broadband internet connection. I used to tinker with computers by creating problems then spending hours troubleshooting them. I’d also try out the new software programs suggested by a monthly magazine that came with a free CD. Once, the Broadband arrived, I had new areas to explore. I was made the moderator of an online forum, which assisted people in resolving their computer issues. All thanks to my volunteer activities. Soon after I discovered blogging: the possibility of writing articles and sharing them with those looking for a solution. All I knew about tech was Windows XP so I shared my troubleshooting tips and other advice on the blog.
Windows Community: Do you have any memories of experiencing Windows for the first time?
Rohit: Absolutely! And they are as vibrant as they were in the winter of 1995, which is when I first laid my eyes on a PC running Windows 95. It was on a demo unit for a branded Gateway multimedia PC that was displayed in a gigantic bookstore. It was priced at around a $1,000 complete with a monitor and a menacing-looking set of speakers. Up until that time I had seen several computers powered by trusty old DOS at banks and other retail outlets. But Windows 95 was my first experience with Windows, my introduction to the endless opportunities the operating system was opening up. And boy oh boy, what an experience it was!
Windows Community: What about Windows most impressed you?
Rohit: The most alluring thing was the Graphical User Interface (GUI). For a kid that had never seen a GUI on a computer, this was next level stuff. The vibrancy of the high-resolution screen, the splash of colors, the Start menu, the programs, games, and media … and all of it just a mouse click away.
Windows Community: How did it impact you?
Rohit: I started going to the bookstore every weekend only stopping when my school purchased some Windows 95 devices for the computer lab. It took about three years till I got my own computer: a Pentium II machine, running Windows 98. I loaded it up with Office 97 and a bunch of software from different companies — everything from Corel Ventura to Microsoft Picture It. It was smooth sailing from then on, learning a range of programs, from word processors to design suites, productivity applications to games, encyclopedias to browsers, and everything in between. It was during that same time that I decided I would carve out a career in the field. I started looking at the operating system from another angle. That meant tinkering and tuning every little thing, learning about all the new features. I’d be lying if I said that the Windows OS was not the defining factor in my choosing a career in technology. It’s impossible to imagine where I would be, or what I would be working on, if not for it.
Windows Community: How does Windows most support your productivity?
Rohit: It’s all about speed. And luckily, this is what Windows has been focusing on lately, with the various improvements that have been built into the platform. There is no better way to amplify productivity than by doing things faster, better, and in less time. And Windows doesn’t disappoint here. It plays nicely with the latest and greatest hardware and offers a truly immersive ecosystem of software that does everything. This is what separates it from other competing platforms, mobile or otherwise.
Windows Community: What Windows features do you use on a daily basis?
Rohit: This may seem surprising, but the desktop is where the real fun is at. The Start Menu, the Taskbar, the System Tray, Action Center — it’s like a personalized control panel of my very own spaceship ! Of course, other areas of the OS are good too, but the desktop is indispensable for a power user like me. I can’t even imagine using Windows without it.
Windows Community: What are your top three Windows apps?
Rohit: The recently redesigned Microsoft News app, the Mixed Reality Portal, and nothing beats the Settings app, which continues to get more refined with every new release.
Windows Community: Is there a lesser-known Windows feature or app would you recommend?
Rohit: The desktop app Computer Management, which you can find by typing it into the Windows search box. It enables you to access the system tools and lets you have more direct management of your computer. You can’t call yourself a Windows expert if you have not dabbed with this often overlooked but very powerful side of the operating system.
Windows Community: Why do you think it’s so important to understand and use computer management, and things like settings?
Rohit: Computer Management is where users need to be if they want complete administrative control over their machines. This is a feature that may be tucked away in the operating system, but the power it contains is unmatched, even in this shift towards modernizing the platform. A single console contains all the necessary tools to make computer management easy. You can schedule tasks or fine tune the services that are running on your PC. Disk management is simplified, and you also have intricate performance monitoring tools at your fingertips.
Windows Community: For those who aren’t sure they have what it takes to become a power user: what advice do you have?
Rohit: Becoming a power user is easy! It’s just a switch you have to turn on in your mind. That’s the real trick. It’s that love of technology, of always learning new things, and improving what you’ve learned. In other words, you just change your computing habits, so that any time you spend with your devices is fun and productive. Once you do that, learning becomes second nature! At the end of the day it’s about seeing computer usage as a fun and enjoyable experience rather than a tedious and tiresome exercise. Modern hardware and software come with a heavy focus on usability and intuitiveness. This is a net positive, both for personal users and professionals. It not only lowers the learning curve for these solutions, but also allows users to learn about the devices they own and the applications they use from the inside-out.
Windows Community: Learning new technology can be like learning to walk: What specific steps would you advise taking to become a power user?
Rohit: The most important point to remember is that your technology adventure is what you make of it—it could be a pleasant walk in the park, or a perilous walk through a desert. The point being, you should never stress about it or take it as a chore. Learning new things should, as a rule, always be a fun affair. More so, for computing and technology, which, for novices, tends to get complex and complicated real fast. My advice would be to treat this journey like learning to play a guitar. Your first few days will be slow, but with daily practice you will, eventually, become a master. The best way to go about it is to set aside an hour a day to scan some active technology forums, read blogs and websites for the latest news, check out views and reviews of the new products that have launched or are launching, learn something new via tutorials and guides, whip out your tablet and download a book or magazine, or kick back and relax while watching a YouTube video or listening to a technology podcast on your phone. Make an active effort to learn something new every day, build upon your daily experience, and take everything as an adventure. Learning anything is like dealing with a mountain. You can either approach it from the top, and climb your way down leisurely, learning new things along the way at your pace in a fun and amusing fashion. Or you can stand at the bottom, stress about how you will reach the top, and fumble along the way, getting intimidated and confused as you encounter new technology and confusing concepts. It’s all about your approach.
Windows Community: What inspires you and why?
Rohit: The community aspect, no two words about it. Strangers helping strangers: what could be more inspiring? Someone spending their time to help someone halfway around the world find a solution to a problem or question—there’s nothing more encouraging! In many ways, all of us are contributing towards a codex, a collection comprised of the questions, answers, and thoughts of each of us. Not once, in my decades of technology exploration, have I been unable to find an answer to a query I had when searching for a particular issue. Even if the right answer was absent, the question was there. And that’s inspiring in and of itself. To realize that other people have faced these issues too, with their machines and programs, and that many found answers. The spirit of what made our industry what it is, lives on in the community. What started late last century, continues today, as people come together to help and guide others on their journey towards increased productivity through the use of technology. Whether it’s Windows or Office, Android or iOS, cloud or landlines, apps or games, hardware or software, media or multimedia, home or workplace, the world gets together to share in their experiences and help others find their true potential. As someone that’s lived through the birth of computing technology, few things are more touching than that.
*This interview is with Rohit Langde from WindowsChimp.com. The opinions here are his/hers, do not necessarily represent Microsoft’s, and is not considered an endorsement by Microsoft.