Geezers, Learning Curves & Technology

learning curve.3 learning curve.2 technology

Technology, for anyone born after 1980, is part of your language. But the rest of us? It’s like learning to speak in tongues. And learning curves do not always move smoothly upward.

Suppose you grew up thinking a drop down window simply had a broken sash cord – if you’re born after 1980 you probably don’t know what sash cords are anyway – and right click was something you did with castanets? And your brain is wired to hit the return lever at the end of every line, but you’re suddenly supposed to know where the tool bar with the back button is, and you thought a back button was something that fastened to a loop at the top of your blouse? You get the picture.

Well, no, you don’t get the picture, that’s the problem.

Getting the picture onto the blog post takes us right back to the language issue: we know those free-use illustrations are out there, but where and how to find them and — more to the point — how to get them from Point A (wherever they are) to Point B (above) is hidden in the mystery language of WordPress and the internet. Friends, some born after 1980, try to help. They install PhotoBucket, they study Windows Live Photo Gallery, they try to explain Flickr or Paint or Pinterest. The learning curve flatlines.

Enter my techie friend Ryan. He may have been born before 1980 but not much before if so. Ryan speaks WordPress.

All you have to know, he explains, is to Google the topic, click on Images, make the magic Usage Rights appear by clicking on the Search Tools, save to your Desktop (which used to be a flat pine surface.) Then on your WordPress dashboard (which used to be in the car) click Edit on the screen below Title, click once on the photo, which brings up the magic pencil, which will lead you to the boxes, and more pencils and a few more choices. Simple. Of course.

Here’s the bottom line: I hope you like those THREE illustrations.

 

Re-emerging into the cyberforest

Forest
Forest (Photo credit: Moyan_Brenn)

If a blog tree falls in the forest of cyberspace, does it make a noise? Probably not. Cyberspace may not even notice – which is a good thing.

A few months ago this blogger fell into the depths of downsizing purgatory: clearing out, packing up, moving house, selling house, the whole catastrophe. The goal was to move myself and mobility-limited husband out of the four-story Edwardian house he bought in 1973 and into a 1600-square-foot condo. This might have been easier if the good husband had ever disposed of ANYthing in those 40 years. Or if he had not celebrated the move by falling and winding up wheelchair bound two days post move, but here we are. Felled, like a couple of Monterey pines.

That’s the end of my tale of woe, until I start a new book on downsizing. (PS, the actual new book: Perilous Times: An inside look at abortion before – and after – Roe v Wade will be out, from YBK Publishers, on May 20!)

It seems that cyberspace got along just fine without a word from this corner. For all I can tell, even Facebook and Twitter got along without me, a downed blogger not even posting or liking or tweeting into the void.

But back in the more or less real world now there is plenty to be blogging or posting or kvetching about: serious stuff like small victories in end-of-life rights or egregious losses in reproductive rights; ridiculous stuff like women having foot surgery so they can wear fashionable shoes; and utterly incomprehensible stuff like the Winklevoss twins and their bitcoins . Since every one of these is of concern to boomers and beyonders, this blogger now looks forward to resuming occasional comments, a sort of one-tree revival in the cyberforest. Tree-huggers will always be welcome.