Monday, September 15, 2008

Technology Tortoise

A local city park we visit has a small zoo and one pen features a South African tortoise with a number of rabbits and guinea pigs. The sign on the fence reads "The Tortoise and Hare". We watched the tortoise doing deliberate laps around the perimeter of the enclosure while the rabbits (not hares) burrowed and nibbled on greens.

When it comes to technology, I am a tortoise with the newer toys. I have never had an iPod even though there are a number of them floating around the house. Our daughters have received free iPods for opening bank accounts and buying computers but I have never understood the appeal of walking about with headphones on. I like to listen to the sounds of nature on my walks and think earphones are unsafe in a car. (Do you notice the people who do not hear an approaching siren on the roadway?) One of my patients who is in her late 70's was listening to an iPod at her bedside recently. Her husband had programmed it for her and I was very impressed with their youthful attitude.

I purchased a new laptop a year and a half ago with Windows Vista OS installed. The computer is not compatible with the printer that came with it, nor my relatively new Canon scanner, even though I have installed upgraded software. I have to reinstall my printer software every time I use the printer. Recently the computer has decided to crash rather screen...all is lost. I have logged over 200 such crashes in the past few weeks with as many as eight in a row during rebooting. We used Apple computers until I purchased my first PC laptop for work in 2000. I no longer need a laptop since I resigned from my community job, so it is time to return to Apple.

We welcomed two new MacBooks into the family last week and each came with a bonus iPod Touch. I can check my email and browse the internet wherever there is a WiFi signal and do not need to subscribe to a service. I am able to add pictures, videos and more songs than I can listen to. I have decided I really like this little gadget now that it is personalized with my favourite images and music. Mind you, The Becka had to provide some coaching assistance with the set up. The unit comes without an instruction booklet and says only to "plug into your computer and follow the directions on the screen". Well those directions were rather vague to say the least.

This tortoise is on the move! Maybe I will even catch up with my children one of these days. Maybe not, but I am still in the race.


  1. I find the iPod incredibly handy. It can go where I go when I want. External speakers make it even more functional. It's not that I need it or use it all that often, but when it comes in handy it really comes in handy.

  2. Oh, there's no doubt you will catch up. My iPod is one indispensable item I never knew I needed. I download several NPR programs I might otherwise miss.

    When my husband had a hip replacement, I made classical playlists for him and he listened with noise reduction head phones while he was recovering. The soothing music reduced his need for pain meds.

  3. This is a good chuckle post--love the last photo of tortoise leg raised ready to enter the race.
    I am somewhere in between--I too do not have an I-Pod, though it is a frequent gift idea. Free I-Pods? None around here. I can see using one for downloading those radio stories I would otherwise miss.
    I am fortunate to have a son working with computers and a son-in-law to be who is very handy. The two of them set up our HD TV when we got it, so we know where to turn for HELP.

  4. At one time I was right up and ahead in the technological world ... now I've sadly fallen behind. We still don't have an iPod (he have Apple computers though) ... haven't seen the need. Now you come along and make it sound, mmm, fun and almost necessary. Alas, we've no kids to help us set one up!!! (D is pretty savvy though).

    Love the tortoise pics.

  5. My kids keep nudging me into the 21st century (they all have Apple computers) My son gave me his old iPod Nano, which I really enjoy. My oldest daughter set up a Twitter account for me so she could hear about my recovery days minute by minute after she headed back home.

  6. Well, you're not the only one. I don't have an ipod either and I don't even know what a MacBook is. Hmmmmm - it sounds like you are having fun with it, so ......

    If my computer crashed 200 times, I think it would be in the garbage loooooong ago!

    Loved the tortoise analagy, especially waving goodby at the end.

  7. Anonymous9:40 pm GMT-4

    Count me in too in the world of "I-podless" people.

    I find that I cannot keep up with the ever fast pace changing technology world. A person can spend a fortune keeping up with the upgrades. I keep it simple and basic. As long as it doesn't let me down, I'm happy. I'm sure my computer is as old as that tortoise.

    To me, the tortoise in the last pic looks like he has discovered something and is racing to get there. Maybe there were handing out free Ipods! (lol)

  8. Ok, so now i"m the only person in the world without an i pod now:)

  9. I am in the in-between too Ruth. We have an iPod, but I only ever used it to have music while I was walking. It was in a dock with speakers. Never have owned a laptop. Hubby just got himself a crackberry, but I just don't feel the need. Never have texted anything, and also don't feel the need. :c)

  10. Hi Ruth,
    I'm always impressed with your technology knowledge and feel I have so much more to learn to catch up with it. But I'm pretty sure before the end of 2008, I will be an iPod owner too (I've seen the miracle of BirdJam working and I want to have the power in my own hands too!)

  11. I don't have an IPOD, but some no-name brand just for music. I bought this laptop a year ago and made sure not to get windows Vista...I guess I would need help from a neighborhood child if I want to get into the other techy things..LOL

  12. AC- I still am not used to using it and may have to get softer earphones. I have plugged it into my external computer speakers a couple of times.

    NCMW- I will have to get iPods on the hospital budget ;-)

    KGMom- iPods have really come down in price and the memories are huge. I bet you will get one eventually.

    CS- I would not put it in a "must have" category. The internet part of it is pretty slow. It is a good picture and music album though.

    Jan- I have just learned about Twitter. I am not a texter, and am not sure my family would be interested in my hour to hour activities.

    Wendy- The computer counts the crashes itself. I knew it was crashing often but was astounded at the report I pulled up.

    Cheryl D- Keeping up with technology is getting as expensive as keeping a car. Things are valueless in such a short time and you cannot get rid of them easily.

    Jean- I am sure you have lots of company!

    Jayne- Ahh..the Crackberry. Friends of mine who work for a Home Care company were issued them for work. When we are out socially they are all on the 'berries'. Very addictive indeed.

    Ruthie- I looked up BirdJam. Wow...I think it will go on my gift list for sure.

    Michele- You were smart not to get Vista. I am sure other MP3 players work as well as the iPod.


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