Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Learning Curves and Cursors

While Bacchus and I were on morning mist patrol l found myself reflecting on a half hour phone conversation with our Blogfather's A.P. friend last evening. We talked about everything, it seemed to me, except the purpose of her call - background for an article on whether blogging is a pursuit that would help keep senior's minds active. Actually she snugged my ramblings into something coherent that I could have said in much less time - except I love to visit.

I have a few additional thoughts on the subject. I think blogging may not be the best focus as much as learning to use a computer period. I don't blog for my family or friends - I use e-mail for that. I blog for the fun of it and have no expectations when I get bored with it and disappear that anyone will miss me. My hit indicator certainly bears that out! But that's okay. I don't want blogging nor my computer to be my life. That may change as I age.

Which actually brings me to my point. For those who are less able to get out and about the internet is a wonderful avenue into any aspect of the world one might want to explore. On a less ambitious level, e-mail is the greatest thing since white bread as a simple, efficient means to keep in touch with family and friends. Even if only one side of a correspondence has photo capability - what a great way for Great Grandma to see the kids in a timely manner.

The downside is the learning curve. As the generations who grew up with computers mature this is a relatively undaunting task. For those who are of the prior generation the frustration level can make it prohibitive.

I'm just beyond being a boomer and I'm savvy enough to be able to hunt and peck but I have neither the time or patience to learn all the nuances. Go back a generation again to my Mom's. After my Dad passed away she stayed on in their home until her time. She wouldn't budge - that's where the memories were and as long as she was well tended by her care givers I wasn't about to deny her that. But she wouldn't have a microwave. Newfangled gadget! No one knows how to cook any more!

She dug in. My brother gave her one for Christmas when she was 93 and she made him return it. She wouldn't correlate how much easier it would have made meal prep for the care givers - cooking for one - with her suspicion of anything "new". A computer wasn't even remotely possible.

So there are pluses and minuses. Depends on your generation and mind set. Reminds me of the list of all the things kids today never knew. My Mom is one of them - and perhaps the mind set. But don't bet on it. I'm 64 and I see a lot of my folks attitudes creeping in. I can only hope they are the good ones.


someone named Dave said...

That is an interesting post...older people not wanting to accept anything new. I look at myself; I'm 51, an 'old has-been' in cyber terms. I think it's all about how willing you are to embrace new things, no matter what your age. I found that computers 'think' sorta like my mind does. Sad your Mom didn't want a microwave; she would've probably enjoyed relaxing more rather than slaving over a stove. Well, same with computers. I think they're pretty exciting. At first, I didn't want to have anything to do with 'em. I guess it's all in the 'attitude', and you can change your attitude, no matter if you're 24 or 64.

gs said...

i can't agree more with dave.i am 61 and was introduced to blogging last year by my daughter who is an avid blogger.i post quite regularly on the subjects that appeal to me.and i try to insert pictures too to make the subject more interesting.
blogging is one way of jogging your keeps it active and hopefully keeps dementia away.
my day is incomplete without blogging.i read several blogs and add to my posts too. it is fun and i love it.