First off, the sun is shining as the morning fog gives up its fuzzy grip on Juneau. The forecast on the weather page of this morning’s Juneau Empire shows continuing sunny days for the foreseeable future. As my son says, the best forecast here is for a continuation of whatever today’s weather is. Which ain’t so nice when it’s raining, but I’ll take it right now.
In line with my mission (?) to try to keep up with technology, at least as it pertains to daily living, I’ve been studying Social Media Marketing. Among other happenings, from a not-very-active Facebook user, I now routinely go there as part of my daily internet check (email (5 of them gdang it), news feeds, etc.) Underneath the FB (‘scuse me, FaceBook) veil of trivia there is healthy connection to those far away (or even in the next room) – clearly the reason for the site’s phenomenal growth. My favorite way to learn new technical stuff, though, is at Lynda.com which has a great course on Social Media Marketing and another on Twitter – Essential Training. Hand in hand with that study, though, I need ways to apply what I’m learning. Not hard to find, for organizations I work with. So I’ve added some more projects to my never-ending todo list. And, forgive me friends, but I set up TwitterFeed to automatically feed blog posts to the TrouserRollers FaceBook and Twitter pages.
Happily, my morning piano practice time has moved into the sacred zone, so this particular interest (?compulsion) seems not to be in danger of bumping into it.
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For an old lady, I seem to be technologically inclined. I’ve been that way all my life, so why should I stop now? Don’t know if it has anything to do with my proclivity for science as a kid – though that may have had more to do with my being in love with Mr. Holderness, my chemistry teacher and author of the then standard textbook. Or maybe it’s genetic – both my parents were chemists who morphed into photographers. For whatever reasons, I ended up studying chemistry and physiology in college – after reluctantly abandoning the desire to be a pig farmer.
As a young mother I bought a programmable calculator (HP, 12-steps) in 1977 and discovered what a program was. This was followed by a TRS-80 with a tape recorder for storage (before disk drives) and staying up nights to master the elements of programming languages (Basic) and the 3 software programs that came with the machine: Scripsit (word processing); VisiCalc (the first spreadsheet); and Profile (database).
Careerwise, since I had an aptitude for this stuff I ended up having responsibility for it – so the interest and knowledge just kind of kept on building. Learned (and since forgot) all kinds of details about hardware, huge database applications, and programming languages. Even built a few in my time.
Since the Internet it’s been all downhill. Started with a CompuServe account in the early 1990’s, and slid into web development when we moved aboard Callipygia and created one of the first blogs. I won’t absolutely say it’s an addiction, maybe downgrade it to a (marginally controlled) compulsion. In fact days go by when I don’t turn on the computer until the afternoon. Fact is, I don’t miss it when I’m outdoors – not one bit. I’m happy to leave all things technological behind when off in the wilderness. For days, if need be. And, I quit using an electronic organizer long ago. Don’t have and don’t want an iPhone or Blackberry. I don’t want to be electronic in the car, or away from work/home. Too much of a distraction from the real world.
I started this post with the intention of sharing a few things that may be of interest, so let’s do it:
- I’m into web design and development, and lately moving into print ditto. It’s important to me to learn how to use applications efficiently. And productively. Being on a constant learning curve keeps the brain neurons firing away in old age, too. To that end I pay $25/month to subscribe to the Lynda.com video training library. Between this and various other Internet resources, I no longer need to buy expensive and bulky reference and teaching texts. I highly recommend this training source, it’s the main reason I can keep my skills growing.
- I have RSS news feeds in my Firefox toolbar, and I scan a dozen or so sources each morning, or whenever I first log in and have checked email. Among these are Mashable and Wired, since I like to keep up with what’s going on in the communications technology world. Today, I learned about WiFi Direct – seems like a coming big deal. Read about it. Then I learned about a recently discovered vegetarian spider, whose males take care of the young.
- The network news has been well labelled infotainment – not much news in it, mostly talking heads dismembering elected officials.. You have to watch Jon Stewart discussing CNN and it’s non-ability to cover “real” news. If you liked that, check out his coverage of Fox News. The man is brilliant.
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