Home Alone

Not really; just thought that was a catchy title – might make a great movie.  Actually, just the opposite is true: our 7-yr old Twins are home w the creeping crud; I am home because I’m retired and always home; “the wife” sounded terrible when she set off for work this morning and should be back anytime – no doubt to fall into bed.

But, what I find most significant about this morning is that all three of us are “on” our respective laptops.  Yeah: three people in the same family – albeit two very, very junior – each with their own laptop.

Last night I tried to explain to my 95-yr old mother what we were talking about when we said that our kids were taking a “coding” class.  Took me back to my Fortran 4 days, and IBM cards, and, well, that is too depressing.  Moving on.

My kids repeatedly ask about cell phones and internet and, yes, tvs – as in “Did you have ___ when you were our age?”  I have been asked about cars, too.  I didn’t know squat about “coding” until college, and my kids are learning it in second grade.  Of course, in the “good ol’ days” we actually had to understand what we were writing, or spend hours and hours in the basement of the math sciences building trying to “de-bug” our exercises (talk about exercises in futility!).

All this was initiated when my mom wondered about the rate of change and where things were going.  She of course grew up in a house where the closest phone was at the closest tavern.  I pointed out to her that no one less than 15 yrs old has ever known a world w/o so-called “smart phones.”  True, I have never known a world w/o tv.  I”m not sure who has the better deal.  Fer shur: I can’t imagine the next 30-40 years.  I don’t think I’ll worry about anything after that.

The one class I took in high school that I use every day is typing.  Then, it was on a manual typewriter, but the keyboard layout hasn’t changed since when?*  I do love “science fiction” movies, especially the ones where the characters half-a-century from now are still typing on keyboards.  The human beings themselves haven’t changed – they are still plagued by the same faults and foibles that we can read about every day (or see in the mirror if we care to look at what is there, not at what we want to be there).  Can’t run away from ourselves, I guess.

Still, to think of the tech that 7-yr olds have at their fingertips?  Truly, my mind is boggled.  And yes, “Oculus” is passé for these two.  I can only shake my head in wonder at what will be “real reality” for them (you know: as opposed to the “virtual” kind).


*Stamp, Jimmy, “Fact of Fiction? The Legend of the QWERTY Keyboard,” Smithsonian Magazine, 2013 May 3, “https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/fact-of-fiction-the-legend-of-the-qwerty-keyboard-49863249/”

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: