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Technology means I’m Old?

December 29, 2007

Why can I not understand what a six year old can? I have explained to my teenager that part of the chasm in techno-comprehension has to do with what a person has grown up with. This conversation generally takes place after he affectionately insists I try some “game” or other only to find (for the millionth time) that I cannot manipulate a controller so as to actually accomplish anything; too many things at once. So as I explain, for instance, your current six year old finds i-pods and controllers completely normal. I find my i-pod to be alien. My teenager totally understands his cell phone, and that it is really more than a cell phone. I do not undersand this, I cling to the belief that my cell phone is just that, a cell phone. The problem is that it is just a cell phone, but cell phones do a wide variety of things that telephones did not. This whole “generational” explanation does not explain away those folks that just intuitively understand everything about computers. There are blogs, pings, bits, gigs, downloads, uploads, friend requests, permalinks and what have you. I struggle like crazy to learn about this stuff and then, when someone explains it, it seems so simple – til I try to do it by myself. So this reflection leads me to think……..I must be getting old? I am not acculturated properly to the new technology? True, and I still listen to the Grateful Dead.

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