After I turn on my computer in the morning, I often check the National Weather Service site to see what they think is going to happen weather-wise. (You could make the argument that looking out the window is more accurate, but I like to base my weather-related decisions on more than one source.)
In any case, instead of pointing and clicking to open your Web browser every morning, you can have your computer visit your favorite sites automatically when you turn it on. If you always check your email or run other software first thing, you can start that up automatically too. The key is to put shortcuts in your Windows Startup folder. The easiest way to get the shortcuts into your Startup menu is to drag the shortcuts to the Startup folder in your Start menu. It requires some mousing finesse however. Here's how you do it.
1. Open Internet Explorer and navigate to the page you want to add to your Startup folder. In this case, for the weather site, I'd go to http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/otx/. Next to this cryptic site address, you see a little "e" icon.
2. Click and drag that little e down to your Start button. The Start menu opens, but don't let up on the mouse button. Drag your little e icon to Programs, then Startup.
3. When you let go, a little menu appears. Click Copy here.
You can do the same thing with any other web page you want. Or you can put shortcuts to your software. For example, some people like to write in the morning. You could put a shortcut into your start menu to run Microsoft Word. Just click and drag the desktop icon to your Startup folder the same way. Again, you want to click "copy here" because if you don't, Windows moves the shortcut instead of copying it.
If you decide to automatically open Web sites or check your email and you have a dial-up connection make sure you set it to automatically dial. Of course, with a broadband connection like DSL, cable, or satellite, you don't have to worry about that issue, since it's always connected.