How to Get the Best On-line Spiritual Experience at UNITY For Seniors with Limited Technical Experience


  1. Devices that Connect to the Internet ............................................................................................................................ 2

  2. Device Navigation........................................................................................................................................................... 4

  3. Network Connections..................................................................................................................................................... 8

  4. Accessing the Internet.................................................................................................................................................. 11

  5. Dealing with technical issues ....................................................................................................................................... 15

  6. How to Access Unity of Madison On-Line ................................................................................................................... 16


1. Devices that Connect to the Internet

  1. a.)  Smart Phones – Access via cell phone plan or wireless internet

    Needs a data plan from a cell phone carrier like AT&T, Sprint, Consumer Cellular, etc.
    You will likely need to open an account with Google (if using Android) or Apple (if using IPHONE) in order to download and use software.

    Can be used when away from home: “on the road” or “roaming” Good for making phone calls, texting
    Good for GPS maps and internet searches while on the road

    Screens are small and can be hard for elderly people to see
    Data plans can be expensive; especially when streaming video which uses lots of data (Not a good option for watching UNITY on-line church services)

  2. b.)  Tablets – Access via wireless internet only
    Needs internet connection plan from a carrier like AT&T or TDS
    You will likely need to open an account with Google (if using Android) or Apple (if using IPAD) in order to download and use software.

    Large screens are easier for elderly people
    Good for reading downloaded books or magazines or looking at photos
    OK for GPS maps but you need to be in WIFI hot spot to load locations into a map (hotels, restaurants, etc.).

    You need to be in a wireless (WIFI) “hot-spot” to access the internet, like your home or in a place of business. However, you can still read downloaded books, etc. without WIFI

  3. c.)  Laptops or PCs – Access via wired or wireless internet
    Needs internet connection plan from a carrier like AT&T or TDS
    You will likely need to open an account with Microsoft or Apple to download Software. Can be connected to internet via WIFI or Internet Cable

    Good for doing other business activity beyond internet access (word processor, spreadsheets, etc.) More powerful than tablets and smart phones

    Less mobile than phones or tablets
    Can be complicated to use and maintain. Requires some technical knowledge.

  1. d.)  TV Streaming Devices – Access via wired or wireless internet
    Needs internet connection plan from a carrier like AT&T or TDS
    You will likely need to open an account to use the device (ROKU, Amazon, Google, Apple).

    Allows you to stream internet video on your TV.
    If the device has an internet search app, you can watch on-line church services on your TV Can be used on older “flat screen” TVs via HDMI cable.

    Not mobile
    Yet another device plugged into your TV along with the cable box, VCR, DVD, etc. Needs HDMI cable.
    Some video services like NETFLIX, SLING, etc. require maintaining an account

  2. e.)  Smart TVs – Access via wired or wireless internet
    Needs internet connection plan from a carrier like AT&T or TDS
    You will likely need to open an account with the TV manufacturer (Samsung, SONY, LG etc.).

    Allows you to stream internet video on your TV
    If the TV has an internet search app, you can watch on-line church services on your TV No need to have a streaming device plugged into your TV

    Not mobile
    You would have to buy a new TV if you don’t already have a Smart TV
    Some video services like NETFLIX, SLING, etc. require maintaining an account

  3. f.)  Other Devices – Access via wired or wireless internet
    There are many other types of devices that can connect to the internet. For example: Alexa and Siri smart

    speakers, ring security devices, Lutron controls that can turn your homes lights on and off on a schedule, etc.

    Bottom Line: be prepared to maintain and pay for multiple accounts at multiple service providers (cell, internet, cable (if still doing that) and various streaming services, etc.).


2. Device Navigation

Most devices have the same basic function.
There will be a screen with a list of ICONS (a small picture that represents an application on the computer). ICONS are used to start-up (launch) applications that are on your device.
A cursor it a pointer on your screen that you use to point at the ICON(s) that you want to use on the screen. How this is done depends on the type of device that you have.

Desktop computers have a mouse accessory that you use to move the cursor around the screen. It also has buttons that you can click (or double click) to start an application or hold down and move ICONS around. Some also have a wheel that you can use to move the contents of a screen up and down.

Laptop computers have a touch pad you can rub your finger over to move the cursor around and tap to launch an application.

TVs have remote controls that you point at the screen and also have buttons that you use to navigate around your TV screen and launch applications.

Touch screen devices like cell phones and tablets allow you to directly touch the screen (your finger is the cursor). The way you move your finger(s) is referred to as a “gesture”.

How to manipulate the screen for easier viewing for those with eyesight problems: Screen-Zoom is a useful menu tool for seniors with vision problems.
You can either click + or – to enlarge/shrink the display or pull a slide bar left or right:


On a tablet or phone, you can place your thumb and finger together on the screen and then move them apart to enlarge the screen content. Moving your fingers together will shrink the displayed content.

TVs have what is called an aspect ratio which determines the shape of the video being displayed.
Old box TVs use 4:3 aspect ratio, new flat screens have a variety of wide screen formats.
Some TVs will allow you to change the aspect ratio which could stretch the viewable part of the screen
Most newer TVs do not have this option. However, newer TVs have such large screens it’s usually not necessary.

Menu Options.

Most applications on screen devices have menu options along the top and/or bottom of the screen that you can click or tap to change setting or controls.

There are also drop-down menu options that can be shown by clicking on a series of dots or dashes:

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or Clicking/Tapping either of these will pop up a drop-down menu.


Most menus will have a settings icon with a wheel:

Clicking/Tapping on this will bring up a settings menu for the device if you are not in an application or if you are in an application, it will bring up settings for that application.

On some tablets/phones, you have the option to have the display vertical or horizontal simply by tipping the device in the direction you want to display.

An important option in the settings menu of most devices is software update. You should check this regularly to keep your device up to date.

For example, here is a screen from a desktop computer:


Clicking the google maps icon above will send you to the following application.

At the top and/or bottom is a menu of items you can click or tap to provide further options.
In some cases, you can tap or click the middle of the screen to manipulate the displayed information.


Click on the 3 dots ... and a drop-down menu appears with various options (print/zoom in or out/etc.)


Notice the settings option: page7image19761808in the drop down menu?


3. Network Connections

a.) Anatomy of a Home Network for Internet

Your home internet “network” works pretty much the same as all of your other utilities (electrical, water, gas, etc.).

There is one main line which feeds into your house that needs to be distributed throughout your house to the various devices (faucets, furnace/gas stove, electrical outlets, phone, computer).

Just as the water coming into your house which has two main directions it can take (into the water heater for hot water, or straight to your faucets for cold), the internet also has two main directions (wireless or wired).

Wireless signals are converted to radio signals for broadcast throughout your home.
Wired signals are sent through “ethernet” cables to devices that have this type of connectivity option.

Newer homes usually have a distribution center with ethernet cables wired to several rooms in your home along with the electrical wires.

Older homes do not have this, so you need to have your wired devices close enough to the router so that ethernet cables can reach between them.


b.) Setting up a Home Network

Your internet provider will install the modem and router which should be plugged into a power strip (power source in the above picture). The router will have one wireless channel and from four to several ethernet plug-in ports.

Devices can then be fed by the home network in one of the three ways:

  1. 1.)  Wireless

    Device connects to network via radio signals.
    The device usually displays signal strength as shown in image above (green)

    Device is very mobile and can be anywhere that is within the signal strength of the router Does not need to be plugged in with a cable

    Device will have to compete with other wireless devices being used on the network Could be unreliable for video streams if the signal faulters
    Since the signals are broadcast, it presents some security concerns

  2. 2.)  Directly plugged into the router via ethernet cable

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Device will have its own channel and therefore will have less competition with other devices Very reliable for video streams
Good for security

Device needs to be near the router so that an ethernet cable can be stretched between them.

3.) Ethernet cable plugged into the router at one end and into a home distribution center at the other end. The distribution center has ethernet cables run through the walls of the house into various rooms that may need internet connection along with the electrical wiring. This is installed in newer homes as a standard feature in many cases.


Device will have its own channel and therefore will have less competition with other devices
Very reliable for video streams
Good for security
Device can be an any room (not necessarily near the router) as long as there is an ethernet plug available in the wall.

Device needs to be near a wall that has an ethernet plug.

c.) Connecting device to the internet

After making the physical connection, the device needs software connection

  1. 1.)  Go to settings on your device (usually a wheel icon):

  2. 2.)  Within settings, go to connections on your device

  3. 3.)  If you are using a wired ethernet connection, simply select the wired connection option and you should be

    ready to go.

  4. 4.)  If you are using a wireless connection, a list of all available wireless networks will show.

  1. Select the name of your network (it is provided on the top of your modem or router)

  2. Enter the password of your network (this is also provided on top of your modem or router)

After the above steps, you should be connected.
A wireless connection will show signal strength and a wired connection will show the network icon

Network maintenance – It is recommended that you recycle your internet once a week by simply turning the power strip to the modem/router off for a minute and the turning it back on.



4. Accessing the Internet

a.) Launch an internet application

Most devices come with internet browser software that can be used by simply clicking/touching an ICON.
For example, here are some of the most popular browser icons (from Google, Microsoft, Firefox, Apple Safari, etc.).

After clicking/touching an internet browser application, it will give you various options.

If you know the address of a web site, you can simply type it into the URL (click or tap on the small window at the top of the screen). For example:

If you don’t know the web address, you could do a generic search. For example:

Sometimes, the browser will provide a list of icons for the most popular web sites that you can select from:

Many browsers provide news feeds and other sites of interest that you can click/touch.

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  1. b.)  Internet Security
    After entering a web site, the URL (at the top of the screen) will be filled in with security information: A lock symbol and/or https:// will show just before the web address.
    Make sure that either the lock symbol or https shows and the web address is spelled correctly.
    For example:

    If the lock is missing or it displays http without the “s” or the name is misspelled, the it may be fraudulent. For example:

    In some browsers, you can actually click on the lock symbol and it will give you information about the web site that will assure that you are in the correct secured web site.

  2. c.)  How Web sites work

    When you enter a web site, you are running software at the web site and have access to their servers for searching data. If the data is private; you will need to log on with a user id and password. Please note that web sites will see what you are searching and may keep track of your information. Some of this tracking information may even be stored on your device (cookies).

  3. d.)  Web site versus app

    Many software applications can be run by either going into the applications web site or downloading the application software to your device.

    For example, YAHOO can be run by going into the web site:, or you can download the yahoo application to your device and run it by tapping or clicking the icon.

    Downloaded applications will take up memory on your device and may run in the background slowing down your device. Therefore, it is recommended that you only download applications that you use often.

    For example, if you need to make a one-time VENMO payment, you do not have to download the VENMO app, you can simply go to However, if you need to make many payments every day, you can download the app from


  1. e.)  E-mail
    There are many applications for e-mail: yahoo, America online (aol), gmail, etc.

    plus many more

    You will need to open an account with these services in order to use them.
    Make sure the service is free (don’t allow extra features that could cost you or provide credit card information).

    They all work basically the same.
    It provides an in-box : where incoming e-mail is placed.
    If also provides for various folders for sent e-mails, archived e-mail and folders you can make yourself.

    E-mail security:
    Do not click on links that are embedded in e-mails unless it is an e-mail that you are expecting from someone you know. It is better to open your internet browser and type in the web address manually making sure it is spelled correctly and when entered, shows the lock symbol and https://

  2. f.)  Downloading Software

    There are all kinds of software packages available that you can download on your computer (social media, games, video, music, etc).

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It is best to only download software from the play store app that comes with your device.

If you need an app not in the play store, manually type in the web address for the app checking for security as mentioned above and follow the instructions as provided.
Some software is free. Some have an upfront cost and others may have a monthly premium you have to pay.

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g.) Viruses and Malware

Nowadays, most devices come with anti-viral software (including Microsoft products).
However, it is advantageous to also download a free version of anti-malware software such as You can manually run this occasionally (once a month or if your device starts acting wonky).

  1. h.)  Backups

    Back-up your files on a memory stick (available in many department/discount stores).
    If would be best to have a back-up of your financial information on a secured memory stick stored in a lock box at a bank.
    If you have a very large amount of data, you will need an external hard drive.

  2. i.)  Passwords

    User IDs and passwords should always contain several characters (alpha (both lower and upper case), numbers and a special character “$,#,@ whatever is allowed).
    You can store user ids and passwords on a secured memory stick that has one password that you can remember.

  3. j.)  Roaming and WIFI Hotspots

    Never access personal financial information when you are logged into an unsecured WIFI hot spot (restaurants, hotels, etc.)



Frozen Device

  1. a.)  Reboot the device by pressing and holding the power button down for a few seconds.

  2. b.)  If a threatening window pops up on your device, immediately reboot as stated above.

Slow Device

  1. a.)  Android devices and some smart TVs come with a “device maintenance” icon in the settings menu. Running this will clear out memory and space problems.

  2. b.)  On apple devices, double tap the home button will show all the applications running in multi-windows. You will have to swipe all of them manually to shut them down.

  3. c.)  Often, a user will launch many applications which will be running and slowing down your device. Android devices have a “multi-window” button left of the home button. Tap this button to show all the applications that are running and then tap the “clear all” button to shut them down.


5. Dealing with technical issues

  1. a.)  Problems with Cell Phone Data Plans

    1. 1.)  Most cell phones have account and data plan usage information in the settings menu.

    2. 2.)  If you cannot determine a problem on the cell phone, either log onto you cell phone account online or call

      your cell phone company.

  2. b.)  Problems with Home Internet (buffering – i.e., spinning wheel on the screen)

    1. 1.)  Turn your internet off and back on will clear out most issues.

    2. 2.)  If the problem continues, the problem may be at the web site or the internet provider.

  3. c.)  Problem with frozen or slow Devices

d.) Issues with lap-top or desk-top computers need to be addressed by someone with technical skills, like your retired software engineer husband or teen-aged grandchild who is majoring in computer science.


6. How to Access Unity of Madison On-Line

1.) Type in Unity of Madison Web Address into a Web Browser Application

  1. a.)  Web Address :

  2. b.)  For live streaming, click on Live Streaming button and find the following streaming window:

    1. Click on “1” above to play the video
      2 bars means that “video is in pause mode” and a triangle means that “video is in play mode”.

    2. Click on “2” above to play the audio
      Line crossed over speaker image means that “video is in mute mode”.

    3. Click on “3” above to enlarge window to full screen.

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