Back in the Electronic Age

I often make a joke about what would happen if all of our modern electronics suddenly stop working. Do you know what would happen? We would be thrown back all the way to the 1970s.

Some people feel that modern electronics is more of a hindrance than it is a convenience. I was able to decide for myself this week as my incredible four-year-old phone’s battery died. As I began to miss important calls, and meetings with my accountability coach, I started to feel the years melting backward.

 Four years is not a long time, yet I started by looking at getting a new phone. Because I was in the middle of a plan change, I was not authorized to purchase a new phone online. I was told to go to a local store.

I went to a store in the mall, and the clerk advised me to go to the repair center for a new battery. The repair center was amazed that the phone’s battery had lasted the four years and they asked me what I wanted to do. It turns out four-year-old phone batteries are not always available, even at the repair center.

The people at the repair center were very kind though.  They checked out my account online and helped guide me to a phone that would do what I needed and fit into my limited budget.  They made the transition fast and even transferred my apps and data from my old phone to my new one. 

I truly appreciated the folks who helped me, and I am in a far better place than I was two days ago.  For now, I am comfortably back in the electronic age and ready to move forward into Tomorrowland.

If you have a chance, please give me a call.

I hope we can be together again tomorrow.

 

Needed Improvements

Have you ever had an irritating problem that just threw you off your whole day’s activities? Something significant enough to be a thorn in your side and yet should’ve been small enough that you would handle it in due course? I had one of those this morning. And it disrupted my whole morning routine.

My cell phone died. The end had been coming for the last few weeks. And although with technical help, I had been able to breathe life back into it for a little while, it had died. It had been an excellent 2014 phone which had lasted me just shy of four years. It’s the longest time I had ever had the same cell phone.

There was no reason to get hung up about the problem. It was just an inanimate object whose time for replacement had come, and yet it started my whole week off by having to cancel the weekly call with my accountability partner. And although I’ve had problems like this before, I don’t know why this one took me over the edge.

I think it might have been the fact that, I believe I should’ve been more active in staying ahead of the problems and not letting them come to fruition. Rather than trying to squeeze every penny out of every item in use, I need to pay closer attention to functional lifespan and staying ahead of the curve on needed improvements.

Our business, personal, and family life, all deserve upgrades as needed.

I do not believe I’m the only one to ever face the need for positive change either and what I use or what I do. If you have a story about a needed change, please share with us. I would be glad to see that it gets posted.

Thank you for being here. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Technology Timesavers

Technology is a fantastic thing. The time it saves us, allowing us to work at a higher level of proficiency, helps to make even newer and more complex timesavers possible. And yet, as with all things new, to get the best use we need to take the time to learn and understand the new tool.

I know that my own blog writing skills have been enhanced tremendously through the use of computerized dictation systems. At first, they were very costly, and now they come is a standard part of Microsoft Word. They allow me to build my stories and blogs faster and saves me over 80% of the time I would spend typing those words.

I have an excellent spelling, grammar and plagiarism checker which allows me to ensure that I have spelled the words correctly and used proper grammar.  It verifies that I have not accidentally plagiarized someone else’s work. It does its job with speed and accuracy that allows me to write with confidence. The whole process of editing a blog takes mere minutes.

To ensure everything reads and sounds correct, word has provided a read aloud button that will read the work back to me. It even gives me a choice of three voices with which I can listen to the writing. 

I wish I would’ve had this when I was working on my Masters in adult education. The time it would have saved me in reading, writing and research would have been remarkable. What this technology does, is allow the user to concentrate on what they are doing.

Whether it is writing a book, learning something new, sharing with friends, or other activities the technologies ensure a correct and positive experience for the audience. The technology also gives freedom to the author to focus on the subject being explored while minimizing the concerns of technical presentation.

Thanks for being with us today and I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

 

Our Calling as Seniors

I believe I have finally figured out why we slow down as we grow older.  

 As we grow older, we gain more knowledge, we know more, and we can think more clearly. We’ve been around the block once are twice, and because of that, we could do much better at tasks if we put our minds to them. It is only fair that we are slowed down a little, just to give the newer generations who are coming up after us a fighting chance.

We need to give the youngsters a chance to practice making decisions.  They should experience both succeeding and failure.  And, young people need to know how to perform postmortem analysis on a project to see what went right and wrong.  They need the ability to help others so it won’t be a strange concept when they grow older.

As we face the knowledge that change is always going to happen. We need to help them realize that the impossible will eventually, at some point, becomes inevitable.  We do this because everyone needs to know how to handle the new technology and how it changes the landscape.

You cannot learn to fly until you give up the bicycle and put hands on the controls of the airplane.  We need to give the next generations the control of their destinies while helping to make sure they don’t land in a tree.  That is our mission in life as the older generation.

Because We Can

If the future were left to those who believed the status quo was the best that we could be, we would never evolve to find our full potential.

It’s not the sane and the rational who move us to new abilities. It is those who refuse to accept anything less, those who do not know it cannot be done, and the sheer willpower of the stubborn who declined to be defeated.

You have heard me state before, and it is true that up until 1900 knowledge doubled about every hundred years. Today it doubles roughly every 13 months. Except for some newer technologies. Nanotechnology and a few others are still doubling every 2 to 3 years. From our healthcare systems to our space programs, to our better understanding of our world, and even to the better understanding of each other, our lives are improved through the expedited growth we are enjoying in knowledge.

This is not the time to dig in heels and claim we have to slow down just because we don’t know or understand. Now is the time, like none other since the Elizabethan era, when we should learn everything we can, do everything we can, and find ways to help everyone we can. Why do we do this? Because we can, and now we are allowed to grow and be part of the solution like no other time in history.

For millennia, governments have feared change. Even our own government wanted to keep items such as breaking the sound barrier out of the news and ventures into space limited to the government people charged with doing so. Now government partners with the private sector to fulfill our future in not only spacecraft and space travel, but also a whole host of other initiatives which used to be the government’s domain.

This incredible resurgence and growth in knowledge are fueled in large part by significant companies once again willing to perform research to first discover and build the items that will then, at a later date, give them monetary success. The advantages we gave up when we curtailed our willingness to invest in unknown research are slowly coming back. We are not the smartest nation. We are not the best-educated nation. We are not the healthiest nation. Yet, hopefully, we are the nation back on the path and going back to where we’ve been before.

 

Take the Time Needed

Have you ever tried to accomplish a great many tasks, knowing precisely what you wanted to do and yet the harder you worked, the less you achieved?

It sounds like me this morning. Waking up early this morning, I went through my morning ritual, had a good breakfast and could not wait to get to work. Then, the computer took its own sweet time firing up.

You might say, “Not your fault Mate, it’s the technology.” And yes, it would be very easy to blame the technology is slow. And yet it is not always the technology. It is more the way we interact with the technology.

Technology has a very subtle way of doing things, and when firing up first thing in the morning, it has several routines to run. If the operator doesn’t give the technology time to do what it needs, the system will genuinely seem slow. When an operator does not provide technology the time to do startups and then demands more programs to start that requires more processor time, more memory, and more functionality, the technology just bogs down even more.

The smart thing for the operator to do is to fire up the computer and step away for a cup of coffee while the computer goes through the morning rituals of preparing the technology for the day. Then, bring up requests for software in a smooth and orderly fashion.

After all, the operator is actually biological technology. If pressed too hard by too many demands, the operator will suffer the same ‘bogging down.’ And, lose the ability to accomplish his or her requirements for the day.

Just something to consider as the desire to accomplish grows larger.