My love-hate relationship with technology

Posted on Posted in Teaching Moments

I have a love-hate relationship with technology.  I absolutely love it when it works when I need it to work and when it performs in the manner that makes my life seamless.  I love the allure of the new bright and shiny things that really smart people create with the proposition that the gadgets will make my life easier and more manageable.  I love the sleek designs that make the devices slip into my pocket or tote without adding bulk or excessive poundage.  I also love shopping for covers and other accessories for the devices more than I love spending my time learning about the science of the devices that awes geniuses and tech savvy people.

 Events in my personal and professional life have reminded me that I love technology as an art form and more than a science.  There was a reason I changed my major from electrical engineering to English.  Today’s post is for those challenged like me and for the smart ones who need advice on how they can better support those like me with technology shortcomings, but are otherwise very bright and capable people.  Here is my survival kit for folks like me who are technologically challenged:

·       Don’t purchase the first bright and shiny thing that claims to make your world better and brighter.

·       Find people who can understand your limitations and are willing to help your understand your options after stop laughing.

·       Purchase the device or find someone with the latest shiny thing and purchase their old one.  Once my son and I split the cost of an iPod as a cost savings measure.  I used it when he was in school and busy with other activities and he used it the rest of the time.  We didn’t like all of the same music so we created playlists. We also learned to appreciate music we might not have selected prior to our joint venture.

·       Once you make the purchase, take advantage of any inperson tutorials or find online support.  Please do this sooner than later or be me with a deadline learning about the science of my new toy under the pressure to make the deadline.  I can tell you that I have found lots of online support, but the key is knowing what to put into the search engine to get the information you need. Although that seems obvious and basic, I think I’ve wasted more time searching than I did actually watching self-help videos wand reading articles on my topics.  Here’s a tip for the smart ones: Start at the beginning with basic tips for those like me.  Whatever you think we ought to know is likely two or three steps ahead of what we actually know so go back to the this is how you turn on your device point and you should be good.

·       Find a young one who grew up with technology who is flattered by your innocence.  You should also be alright if they help out of pity because you are ignorant.  Personally, either reason works for me because I just want the help.

I hope that my short guide to technology for those challenged like me is helpful.  I hope it encourages folks to put their pride aside. Admit what you don’t know and ask for help.  Writing this post made me giggle because these tips might also apply in relationships with people.  For example, it is important to take your time in building relationships.  You should learn as much as you can about folks with whom you enter relationships earlier as opposed to later.  Successful relationships will mean having the ability to accept instruction or information from others in areas where you are ignorant and the ability laugh at yourself when innocence about new or trending topics is exposed.

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