Friday, July 15, 2016

About Before the Internet Age: Gratitude for Cell Phones and Ditch the Hitch-hiking.

My internet connection crashed yesterday afternoon, and I felt molested to the upmost degree about that. My partner and I were in the middle of what is to us doing important work---building a website to market art resources and supplies at Art Easels for the Artist. By the way I ask readers to do us a favor and check out our website and leave a comment---this will encourage the traffic that leads to higher ranking in the search engines.  
My partner Osnelly and I at Mall del Rio in Cuenca, Ecuador

Anyway, it´s late morning now and my web connection is still down, but a trusted and experienced internet systems engineer at [email protected]  is going to come over at 3 pm to re-establish the connection. I am fully confident he will succeed.
Obviously my tranquility is associated with a reliable and fast moving internet connection. I am tied to the net. It is a part of me and I am a part of it. But I am old enough to well remember the days when no internet existed, and I have a story about what that was like. My six brothers and sisters and I were children, in the family station wagon, and dad was driving and mom was with dad in the front seat. We were traveling from San Francisco to Los Angeles and were about to ascend the mountains surrounding the approach to greater Los Angeles. That´s when our vehicle broke down due to mechanical mishap. Dad exited, stuck out his thumb, and started asking for a ride. He started hitch-hiking. He needed a tow to a gas station and he complained---for over an hour no one was stopping while it was plain to see he was a family man. This was circa 1964, well before the invention of cell phones. These problems and similar problems no longer exist because we have mobile phones.

Who would argue this advancement is not to our advantage?
The Osborne 1 computer (1981)

But I have a point to make that´s an offshoot angle or perspective about this. I myself did not grow up with the internet, computers and cellphones around in daily life. As a result their technology is always going to be somewhat foreign to me regardless of how many courses or studies of computers I may take. It´s like language. If someone´s native tongue is English he or she will never quite be able to speak an acquired, second language learned in adulthood with the same fluency as English.

The second language never gets ingrained like the mother tongue did. So it is with computer fluency for those who grew up before computers were part and parcel of daily life. They will never be as comfortable with the technology as are their sons and daughters, not to mention their grandchildren.
Something about it is a fascination to me. The internet has changed people´s capabilities---young people adapting to the world the way it is and becoming capable of guiding earth into a future which we would never have had absent the expansion of computer and internet expertise.
I live in what some term a third world country---Ecuador. But yesterday I noticed an Ecuadorian boy about five years old playing a digital game on his hand phone. He was moving his fingers around that keypad with ease---born of skill developed at a tender age. Be that as it may about Ecuador, it makes little difference. That boy will be painting the internet of the future with colors native to Ecuador.