Windows 10 and “The Change”
I wasn’t ready for menopause and Windows 10 hit me almost as hard. My laptop kept prompting me to make “The Change” and upgrade, but like other upgrades there were problems. I should’ve realized that when they offered a helpline right after the download. It took 12 hours to get a response only to hear I had to call Microsoft since my problem was with Microsoft Office. Their fix didn’t work and after trying several others recommended by friends and online, I figured out how to handle the problem in an unconventional and inconvenient way on my own. However, every time it automatically updated, new glitches appeared. Was this an upgrade or more like menopause which came with a few advantages, but more disadvantages?
When personal computers first became available to the general public, I was considered a techie by my contemporaries. As an educator, I was the first person to learn how to use our school’s one Apple computer and introduced it to my class. Later I took some time off to sell technology and even drove around with St. Paul fire fighters in the back of an EMT van transmitting faxes through a cellphone. That was cutting edge technology at the time. When I got back into education, I ran a computer lab, handled the school’s networking needs and learned how to take a desktop computer apart and put it together again. I was one of the first teachers to have access to the district’s email and taught myself how to surf the web. I learned how to use social media and blog through trial and error. Technology was something I embraced unlike most of my colleagues
As ground breaking technology expanded exponentially, my paycheck couldn’t keep up with the latest toys. Even though I brought computers and video games for my kids and grandchildren, I had to pass on some of the gadgets, apps and programs I wanted. Although I can, I don’t Tweet, use Instagram or Snapchat. My smartphone is always with me, but I turn it off at night, so it doesn’t interrupt my sleep.
Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak, and the late Steve Jobs, all Baby Boomers, introduced us to most of the innovations we enjoy today. I’m part of the growing group of Boomers who use technology so often we need to schedule breaks and turn off social media to get back into the real world. Some days I spend more time communicating on the internet than face to face with real people.
Our generation has always been inventive, creative, and adventurous. We made our own bows and arrows out of tree branches and rode our bikes all over town even after dark. Later we invented the World Wide Web, USB port, modem, Ethernet, optical character recognition and text-to-speech technology to make the world more accessible for our children. There have been many wonderful technological innovations in our lifetime, but sometimes we may need to take a step back and remember that some of the older ways weren’t that bad. That way we can feel that returning to an earlier version of Windows isn’t going backwards. Now I can do everything I need to do and I don’t wake up to updates that change my often used programs. As much as I like progress and change, new isn’t always better.
I’ve a mature body, a senior cat, some antique and shabby chic furniture, and a mixture of outdated and modern technology. I know I’ll have to give up my VCR soon and copy the tapes to a newer format if I want to keep my favorite movies. My DVD player needs to be replaced with a blu ray. I should disconnect my cable and stream my media on a new smart TV. However, my apartment complex only charges $25 a month for all of the cable channels I want. Traveling to new locales is more intriguing now too. When I get back from Australia, New Zealand and the other places I plan to visit this year, I may upgrade. Until then I’ll have to endure jabs from the gamers and techies. My maturity and experience have trained me to not follow the trends, but to create my own path.
Right now I’m going to put my laptop in sleep mode and follow that path to the beach. I’ll talk to someone or listen to music on my smartphone while I walk. It helps me walk further and faster, but at least I’ll be in the sunshine and fresh air even if I’m on one of my devices.
Next week, we’ll discuss Baby Boomers and technology more. Although I haven’t found any studies done on this subject using single Baby Boomers, I think one should be done. We often have extra time alone and may spend it on the internet. Please give me your thoughts on this.
Continue your adventure!
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