Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Technology is Great! (Maybe)

I got my new toy today - a laptop computer. For some folks, that may be a real yawner. For me, Miss Get-The-Latest-Techno-Gadgets-When-They've-Been-Out-For-Five-Years-Already, it's a pretty big deal. I'm no computer geek, but this machine is pretty sweet. It's got 4GB of RAM, a 320 GB hard drive, a built-in webcam, standard wireless, and lots of other cool features. My oldest son wants to trade me his two-year old model for my latest and greatest. I told him, "No Deal!"

The main reason I got the laptop is to make my computer use more mobile. I can take notes faster longhand than I can typing. I just type them up after class or the next day. Good thing, too, because I've had classmates who put out an APB for notes and I usually have mine typed up and can email them right away. I take notes in outline form. A high school Biology teacher, Jim Walker, taught me to do that. Pretty good way to take notes.

My Econ class is in a new building with new classrooms with all the latest and greatest technology. The teacher is still trying to figure it all out. Luckily, they haven't abandoned the good old standby whiteboards. The only thing is, there usually is not a dry erase marker around when you need it. Omer is constantly pushing the wrong button and it takes a few minutes for the projector to warm back up once he accidentally turns it off in the middle of his PowerPoint lecture. Then the screen goes up when he wants it to come down. Again, thank goodness for the white board.

One thing all my profs/teachers have to say on the first day of class is "Make sure your cell phones are silenced when you come into class." That was something I didn't hear when I started my college career 20+ years ago. There are some places in the library where I can't get a signal on my phone. I know - it's the Dead Zone and I don't have the network dudes of Verizon.

Technology is great (ever see Napoleon Dynamite?), yet it has its ups and downs just like everything else. I may just decide my laptop, at 5.1 lbs, is too heavy to lug around and leave it at home. Then what's the use of having it? I'll look cool at Starbucks! Ha! The non-techno geek eases her way into the Techno age. At least I can text. My older sister, 10 months older than me, is text-illiterate. She can receive texts on her cell phone, but doesn't quite get how to respond to them. I tell her, "Just push the 'reply' button, type on the little keypad and then push the 'send' button!" She's better off talking on the phone - even though she always answers her cell phone like she's surprised there's someone else on the other end.

Such is life. Stay tuned . . . . .

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