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The Tax Adviser is now available on CompuServe.

Starting with this issue, The Tax Adviser is available electronically via the Accountants Forum on the CompuServe Information Network. To help users find items appearing in The Tax Adviser, a basic guide is presented for signing onto Compuserve and Accountants Forum, where The Tax Adviser is located.

Starting Jan. 1, 1996, The Tax Adviser is available electronically via the Accountants Forum (the Forum) on the CompuServe Information Network. To help users navigate their way to items appearing in The Tax Adviser, below is a basic guide to signing on.

For purposes of this article, the process is illustrated with Windows-based software (WinCIM), provided free of charge by Compuserve. (Free DOS, OS/2 and Macintosh versions are also available.) Further, when more than one method is available to accomplish a task, the easiest possible way is given.

Although these directions are very basic, it is easier if the user is familiar with a mouse and with Windows in general. (It is advisable, although not essential, that novices use their Windows tutorial first.)

Obtaining a CompuServe Account

Call (800) 524-3388 and ask for the AICPA package (Representative #748) to receive the free software. (to use a program other than the Windows-based software, ask the sales representative for the minimum hardware configurations.)

Install the software according to the package's directions. Compuserve user charges are $9.95 per month. The first five hours of usage per month are free; time beyond that is charged at $2.95 per hour (in one-minute increments).

Enter Compuserve

* Use the mouse to point to the CompuServe Information Manager (WinCIM) icon.

* Double-click (using the left mouse button) on the icon. When the "Connect to CompuServe" box appears, click on "Connect" to dial Compuserve. When a connection has been established, the Compuserve opening screen will be displayed.

* Click on the "Traffic Light" button (also referred to as the "Go" command) on the button bar across the top of the screen. A "Go..." dialog box appears.

* Type "AICPA" (for purposes of this article, do not type the, quotation marks) and click on the "OK" button. Wait a few seconds for the computer to start the program and the next screen to appear.

Join the Forum

The Forum logo mill then appear. In the "Interests" box, type your professional interests (e.g., accounting, auditing). Click on "Join". There are no additional charges to joining the Forum, and a Forum member has access to the various library files and other items. "Visitors" may only scan Forum notices; no other access is permitted. A user need not join the Forum more than once.

The Opening Screen

The pulldown menus are similar to those found in other Windows programs. (The current opening screen of the Forum will change over the next few months with the addition of enhanced graphics.) For experienced Windows users, the buttons at the far right of the screen accomplish the same tasks as the pulldown menus. For this lesson, the pulldown menus will be used.

Using the Library

Issues of The Tax Adviser are located in the "Taxes" portion of the "Library". The Library contains files for retrieval and review, much like a neighborhood public library containing books for pulling off the shelves. To use the Library to find material from The Tax Adviser.

* Click on "Library" in the menu across the top of the screen.

* Click on "Search." The "Search for Files" box appears.

* Enter "0196tta.pdf" (capitalization does not matter) in the "File Name" box (future issues will be "0296tta.pdf", "0396tta.pdf", etc.; to generate a list of all online issues of The Tax Adviser available, type "tta" in the "Keywords" box).

* Click on "Search".

When the search is completed, a list of items containing the file name "0196tta.pdf" will appear; the one document that appears currently is the complete January 1996 issue of The Tax Adviser This document cannot be read directly from the screen (notice how the "View" key is grayed out), but a description is available.

* Click once on the document named "January 1996 TTA" to highlight it, then click on the "Description" button below it to read the description.

* When finished with the description, click on "Close".

Assume the user has looked at the description of "January 1996 TTA" and decided to download the entire issue to read and/or print. That requires two initial steps: downloading the document itself, then downloading the "Adobe Acrobat Reader", which will enable reading and/or printing. (The Adobe Acrobat Reader needs to be downloaded only once.) To download "January 1996 TTA":

* Highlight that item by clicking on it and then click on "Retrieve".

* Use a specific directory consistently, such as c:\cserve\download, for all files downloaded. For ease of use, accept the filename provided by the software program, in this case, "0196tta.pdf."

* Click on the "OK" button to download the file to the hard drive, which will take a few minutes. The "time remaining" line states about how long the download takes (approximately 4.5 minutes with a 19,200-baud modem).

* After the download has finished, click on "Close".

Download the Adobe Acrobat Reader

After the file transfer is complete, the user needs to download the Adobe Acrobat Reader, which will allow reading and/or printing items from issues of The Tax Adviser.

* Click on the "Traffic light" button.

* Type "Adobe" in the dialog box. Click on the "OK" button.

* Double-click on "Download Adobe Acrobat Viewer."

* Double-click on the operating system name (Windows, Macintosh or DOS). (This lesson is using Windows.)

* The next screen asks, at the bottom left, whether or not to download the Adobe Acrobat Reader. Press "Y" for yes.

* Press "Enter" on the keyboard. The software will automatically perform the download; the user performs the Adobe Acrobat Reader download only once (it takes approximately 16 minutes with a 19,200-baud modem). Once downloaded and installed, Adobe can be used to read and/or print The Tax Adviser and other online publications.

* When the screen says "File Transfer Complete", the downloading is completed. Now the Adobe Acrobat Reader can be installed. (This is done offline; see below.)

* Click on the "Disconnect" icon (two cables being separated) and then on "Exit" to exit the Compuserve software.

Installing the Adobe Acrobat Reader

The Adobe Acrobat Reader is installed offline. In the Windows program manager screen:

* Click on "File" in the menu (upper left-hand corner).

* Click on the "Run" command.

* Type the directory, subdirectory and file in the "Run" dialog box (in this case, c:\cserve\download\acroread.exe).

* Click on the "OK" button and the Adobe Acrobat Reader will automatically be installed to the hard disk. A new program group with the Adobe Acrobat Reader icon will automatically be installed in the Program Manager.

* Double-click on the "Acrobat Reader" icon and the Adobe Acrobat Reader will be loaded.

* During installation, the user will need to click on a series of buttons: Click on the "Accept" button.

* Click on the "Install" button.

* Click on the "OK" button.

* Type the user name and AICPA, then press Enter. At the end of the Adobe Acrobat Reader installation, there is a note to restart Windows.

* Click on the "OK" button. Wait for the Windows screen to reappear.

* Double-click on the "Acrobat Reader" icon.

* Double-click on "C.\:" in the "Directories" box to read the "0196TTA.pdf" file.

* Double-click on "CSERVE".

* Double-click on "Download".

* Click on the 0196tta.pdf file.

* A "Password" box appears. Type "Spool+Crate" (SPOOL plus signCRATE then click on the "OK" button.

The Adobe Acrobat Reader allows the user to read and print the January 1996 issue of The Tax Adviser as it was originally produced, complete with graphics and typefaces. To read through the issue, use the "Page Up" or "Page Down" key on the keyboard; specific items can be jumped to automatically by double-clicking in the green boxes in the Table of Contents.

* To print the entire issue, click on "File", then down to "Print", and follow the instructions. Computer page numbers for the issue can be found in the lower left-hand corner of the screen, and do not correlate to the page numbers of the magazine.

* To exit the document and the Adobe Acrobat Reader, double-click on the uppermost dash in the upper left corner of the screen.

Future issues of The Tax Adviser will carry both the file name for the current issue and the password.



* A computer (386 or higher). * A modem (at least 14,400 bits per second). * A phone line. * Windows 3.1 (for purposes of this article). * A mouse or other pointing device. * Communications software (free from CompuServe). * A CompuServe account.


Click. A single click of the left mouse button.

Double-click. Two clicks of the left mouse button in rapid succession.

Download. To retrieve a file from a computer network (e.g., Compuserve) and to store it on a hand drive or some other medium.

Dialog box. A box appearing on the screen presenting information and (usually) offering choices.

Grayed out. In all Windows programs, features and functions not operational or available at a particular time. The operational features are displayed in black (unless otherwise changed by the user). The inoperative functions will be displayed, but the color of the text or icon will be in gray. Clicking on the grayed-out button or selecting the grayed-out choice on a menu does nothing.

Highlight. Sets off text or an icon. Highlighting is accomplished by using the mouse to point to and click on an item on the screen. Most Windows programs will change the color of the background and the text to show that the item has been selected.

Keyword. Each file and message in the Forum and in most Compuserve forums have a series of keywords prepared by the file or message contributor. These keywords are the subjects, primary issues or important words within the document, and are used to help users quickly find a particular topic by performing a keyword search.

Offline. For purposes of this article, "offline" means the user has signed off from an active connection from Compuserve.

Online. For purposes of this article, "online" means the user is connected to CompuServe.

Pulldown menu. The line of words across the top of Windows programs. When a given top-level menu item is highlighted with the mouse, a series of second-level options is displayed beneath the top level. Such words appear as though they have been "pulled down" from the top-level menu.

Reader/Viewer. Terms used interchangeably to describe the Adobe Acrobat Viewer. A "reader" or "viewer" is a software program that allows a user to see files created by other programs.
COPYRIGHT 1996 American Institute of CPA's
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Publication:The Tax Adviser
Date:Jan 1, 1996
Previous Article:When and how to avoid sec. 1038 relief when reacquiring real property.
Next Article:Technology Alerts.

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