Technophobia

Technology has changed tremendously in last 10 years. The arrival of computers, internet, cellphones and other gadgest in our daily lives has changed our life styles to great extent. It is very exciting for people of my generation to see all these changes but it’s not easy for our parents and grandparents to handle the fast changing world. They are not comfortable with the new technologies becoming part of their lives and in fact they tend to have a Technophobia.

When cell phones prices went down few years back and they started becoming part of our lives, I could easily catch up and learn to use it. But it was not same for my parents and when I looked around this was the case with parents of most of the people of my generation. My father learnt to call and send sms soon but he was reluctant to learn other features that came along. My mother was reluctant to learn even that. She was happy asking us every time to make a call.

Same thing continued with computers too. My father picked up and learnt to use at least basic software but my mom was again reluctant to learn to use it. Whenever we asked her to use it, she would reply, ” Why should I learn?” It was just reversal from childhood and now we wanted her to learn everything and she was running away from studies. Later on I came to realize it’s just not happening in our home but was happening everywhere. I think there may be some ‘bright old parents’ who got expert quickly but for majority of old generation people using new gadgets like digital camera, music and dvd players, cellphones is still a nightmare.

But then we slowly understood their problems, became more patient while teaching them and started coming out with new ways of teaching. I remember when I had to explain her difference between hard disk and floppy disk storage capacity, I came up with analogy of difference between storage capacity of a bucket and a glass:). Sometimes these stupid things do work. She started to take interest and came with queries about different things. Another factor that forced her to learn was the introduction of computers in office work. It sound laughable that it took her so much time to learn but it was difficult for her for sure. Be it learning to control mouse or remembering which command does what.

My father was comfortable with using computers and learnt to use internet too but he was afraid of installing software thinking he might commit some mistake and computer will be dead. But after some encouragement and assurance that nothing incurable can happen to computer due to just installing software, he tried that first in front of me. Later on when I and my sis went away from home for our studies, he continued learning installations over phone and now hopefully he is no more afraid to do that.

I feel its my duty to get them familiar with new technologies and keep them up with changes happening aroud. It’s really fun to teach them new things and see the happiness on their faces when they learn something. I taught my father to use gtalk few months back and now he can use a few smileys while chatting with us. Our next job is to teach him some chat abbreviations like gn,btw,gtg,asap n so on. He can send emails, surf the web, chat with us and may be in few years would be designing his web page.

Today my mother can use basic cellphone features like calling,sending sms, saving phone numbers. She can use Microsoft Word and Excel’s features and play song on Winamp media player. She is curious to know about sending and receiving emails. May be one day she will code a C program ofΒ  “Hello Word” :). After all life is all about crazy dreams and setting big goals.

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17 responses to this post.

  1. I also find it very rewarding to help others learn how technology can help them. I even have a blog on it focusing on small businesses and entrepreneurs.

    Reply

  2. I can sooo relate! I taught my parents how to text its amazing! I know babies that play games on blackberries its so different from my childhood.

    I wonder how people used to live without cell phones??

    Reply

    • Before arrival of cell phones, people were happily living their lives.:) But once they became part of our lives, it has become impossible to live without them. Now it’s difficult to imagine living without them, but at that time since they were not available, there was not much problem. May be we have become more mobile πŸ™‚

      Reply

  3. Posted by umesh on September 11, 2009 at 4:31 am

    Hi, Bhai good blog….

    give me the new thinking in life…

    Reply

    • thnx umesh bhai . i am glad to give new thinking but more importantly it was about what had changed in last years without us being aware of its happening too fast πŸ™‚

      Reply

  4. May be one day she will code a C program of β€œHello Word” πŸ™‚

    *Amen* N give us all a run for our money then πŸ˜‰

    After all life is all about crazy dreams and setting big goals!

    Well said πŸ™‚

    Reply

  5. Posted by amitabh on September 11, 2009 at 5:57 am

    gud observation and nicely written …………

    Reply

  6. Posted by Ravi on September 11, 2009 at 6:37 am

    very nicely put… a 10/10 one..

    Reply

  7. Posted by pooja on September 11, 2009 at 6:58 am

    Hey, Nice Topic…

    I want to add some of my experience..

    Once my mom ask me the difference between Hardware and Software. I was successful to explain her What is Hardware.. but, i didn’t make her understand What is Software….Still i am finding the way to make her understand all these..

    For my grand mom, the biggest wonder is TV.
    She always ask us , how come all things fits in a small tv?

    They are really very intelligent, they always ask very conceptual questions…

    πŸ™‚

    Reply

    • pooja u can explain hardware and software by telling them that it’s like body and soul. You can’t touch soul but its essential inside body to be alive. πŸ™‚ . May be too much but i told u stupid things work well sometimes πŸ˜€

      So now onwards better brush up ur concepts to be able to answer all their questions πŸ™‚

      keep reading .

      Reply

  8. hey man…..my first comment in almost two months from a computer πŸ˜› …..can’t really tell you how much i missed internet for all this time…..you said right….for me, and most of my generation, life without a cellphone or a laptop is like a big punishment mann…. :-C

    and the way things go with parents is also so true ya….but you feel really really good when you teach (successfully?) some cool stuff abt internet and all….

    nice post bhau πŸ™‚

    Reply

  9. yes divs. i know how it must be great to have internet back at ur door πŸ™‚
    thnx for the feedback πŸ™‚

    Reply

  10. tststst

    Reply

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