Monday, February 5, 2007

Technology: Threat or Menace? (Week 3, #7)

Just kidding - that's an old family joke that came from the National Lampoon sometime in the early 70's.

Let's see, what do I have to say about technology? It's a mixed blessing - when it's working and when the application meets the need, it's wonderful. When you come to rely on it and it doesn't cooperate, it's possibly the most aggravating thing in the world. Who wants to be defeated by a machine or a piece of code?

Take my cell phone, for instance. Personally, I'd be satisfied to still have my old "brick" - 2 pounds of obsolete technology. (Motto: It's a phone! It's a weapon! Two functions in one large package!) All right, I''ll admit it, it was a bummer carrying it around. And it didn't remember any phone numbers. And it only had one ring to choose from (hey, maybe that's a plus!). But other than that, it was perfect.

And my digital camera. No longer use that Nikkormat SLR, so where's the fun now? No more expectant waiting to see what the pictures will look like when you get them back from the drugstore. Did I load the film correctly? Are any of them in focus? Then there was the time I got somebody else's Christmas pictures instead of my own. And the time Fotomat spoiled the first roll of movies of my baby. And all the times one single roll of film held the pictures from Easter, Independence Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas because we bought a 36-exposure roll to save money and didn't really take that many photos at one time. Now, those were the days. OK, I guess the digital camera really is better.

Maybe the thing that bugs me most about all these new tech toys is that my husband isn't alive to see them. Whenever something new and cool comes out, my daughter's and my first thought is, "Wouldn't he have loved this?!?!?" This was the guy who, the first time he ever got his hands on a computer (a TRS-80 that I borrowed from the elementary school where I was working), he taught himself Basic and stayed up all night writing a program that was a guessing game about the countries in Africa. Unfortunately, the computer had no way to save his work, so when we turned it off to return it to the school, poof! We soon had to have a computer of our own - an Apple IIc, and he wrote more cool programs in Basic - demos of the phases of the moon, and even an explanation of how an internal combustion engine works, complete with animation. When Don died in 2000, the Internet was just getting started. What would he have done with that? With a GPS? With all these other goodies? It's frustrating.

Fortunately, my daughter is her father's child. She plays with these toys enough for both of them, and has yet to find one that frustrates her or a problem she can't use them to help solve. Still . . .

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Week 3, #6

OK, it's six thirty, I was off work at 5, and here I still am. This could be another bad habit. Anyway, I made this trading card of my daughter's tattoo - quite tasteful, don't you think?

Spam already

OK, one minute after I posted the picture from Flickr into my blog here, I got a spam "comment". What's up with that?!?!?


Originally uploaded by egadsylvia.

Here's my workbench, looking much neater than usual. See? I really do melt glass!

Hey, I can edit this! See me edit.

And by the way, I now have many times more glass rods. What was I thinking?

Week 3, #5

So, I used Flickr to upload a picture I'd posted there months ago (I must have been in an adventurous mood, or maybe it was too hot to melt glass...) to my blog here. I would have added this note to that posting, but I can't figure out how to edit a blog entry once it's posted. Any help? Hey, wait - there's an "edit posts" thing up there - maybe I'll try it!

Week 2, #3, Week 1, #2, Week 2, #4

Here I am, multitasking. Or is it just that I'm trying to get this done as expeditiously as possible so I can move on to the Flicker part? I've made my blog and registered it.

So, as for #2, what's my hardest lifelong learning habit? Definitely having confidence in myself and my ability to learn. What's my easiest? Playing! So I usually play with new things and trick myself into learning them, no confidence required!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Hi, Circ Services!

Just in case we use this at the Circ Services meeting, Hi, everyone! I'm doing my best to evolve from my current technopeasant state - I'd like to learn to do this stuff before my grandkids do!