I consider myself to be pretty techno savvy.
Okay, I am daunted at the thought of setting up and maintaining a website, but I have managed to become pretty darn good at troubleshooting most day to day hiccups, I taught myself to make a PowerPoint presentation for someone’s birthday, know my way around photo editing software, make awesome family movies on the PC which I then upload to YouTube, and know my way around the World Wide Web blindfolded. I wouldn’t dream of standing in a queue for something that can be done online, and prefer email to regular mail.
But it wasn’t always that way.
I’m of the generation somewhere in between those who had no computers at all, and the generation who have known nothing else. At the time I started high school, home computers were unheard of. By the time I finished school there was talk of mouse-pads, floppy discs, and EFTPOS. I would own a home PC just a couple of years later.
For this week’s flashback with Cathy at The Camera Chronicles, I am looking back, and not so fondly, at Mr Mizzi’s computer studies class of 91/92. I say not so fondly because, man, was I lost.
It was the days of floppy drives, no mouse or track pad, pages and pages of code, and talk of a future where we would live in a cashless society. I must admit, when he would get all misty eyed and feverish discussing how email would overtake snail mail, and how we would all be able to leave the house with just a plastic card instead of cash, more than a few of us thought he had lost his marbles. It was the language of flow charts, ASCII, binary, Unix, and it was a language I didn’t understand at all.
To be perfectly honest, I bombed. Badly. Totally and utterly failed. I think the highest mark I ever achieved in that class was about 45%. And without naming names or being a mean girl, I know that some of my friends were getting less than 25%. Not because they weren’t smart, but because it was that hard to understand.
I am eternally grateful that computers evolved into the user friendly machines that they are today, and on a similar note, never in a million years did anyone imagine what mobile phones would become: phone, camera, computer, satellite navigating device, music player, diary, notepad, and photo album. My Dad had one of the earliest mobile phones, somewhere around 1987 I think. It looked like this:
At the risk of sounding like an old fogey, today’s kids just don’t know how easy they have it.
When did you first venture into the brave new world of computers?
See you soon,