Saturday, March 10, 2012

technology and fearlessness

I have been moving over to Apple products, probably slowly. I have a PC at work and a laptop at home. But I purchased an iPad last year and just switched to an iPhone from a Droid. So I'm kind of ambi-system-ous, or maybe I'm just confused. Moving from one system to another can be a trial sometimes. . . touching the screen of my office computer to make something bigger or to open a file? Reaching for a mouse when I'm on the iPad? Those are just forgetting, for a moment, what system I'm on. But, despite what everyone says, there is more to switching to i-anything than people let you know. Yes, some of it's intuitive. And, yes, even my two- and three-year old grandchildren can do whatever they want without any instruction. It's almost the first thing they ask. . . "can we play on your iPad/phone?" And after a recent trip to visit one of my children, I found images saved in my pictures file from the sticker boards of several games as well as some pages my three-year-old grand-daughter had colored. I don't know how she managed to save them to my picture file, but she did.

So, given that these almost-babies can run the programs, why am I having so much trouble posting blogs from them? I try to insert a picture. I get the prompt to select a photo. . . but I can't do it! The link isn't live. When I wasn't feeling well last week and tried to copy the address to post my slice on the class wiki and the twowritingteachers site, for the life of me I couldn't copy it! I even went online to find directions, which I followed, but they didn't work! And today, I followed the link that asked me if I wanted to use the "updated" blogger platform, and now I have this screen that I can't entirely see! And since I was planning on taking the iPad with me when I traveled to St. Louis later this month, now I'm worried that I won't be able to post! Or my posting will be limited. So, I am trying to figure this out and trying to figure out what in the world I am doing.

So here's my wondering: I remember taking a linguistics class where the theory was presented the we have a language acquisition device in our brain that closes as we grow, limiting (but not ending) our ability to learn new languages beyond our first one, at least in the same way. I remember that I've heard challenges to this LAD theory, but I wonder if it's kind of true for technology? I am reading more about not using the term "digital natives" to refer to my students who have lived their whole lives with technology because, even though it's there, they don't know as much about many tools as we'd expect. Still, they seem fearless when they're engaged. And a part of me is a little worried that I'll break things. Do something I can't undo. My grandchildren don't seem to even consider that, and a part of me really admires that fearlessness. Will that transfer to the rest of their lives, I wonder. Will they be so willing to embrace new ideas in other areas? Will they be willing to try something they don't know much about--just go for it? I want to be that fearless, not only with technology, but with lots of aspects in my life. Not that I want to jump from a plane or bungee jump off a bridge, but maybe stretch myself in ways that seem risky in other ways. But I don't know if I have that kind of fearlessness in me. I hope I do. I hope I'm willing to try new things and consider new ideas--and I hope I'll continue to step into new areas of life.

I guess I'll see, first, if I can make this post work on this new system today.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting idea to compare learning new technology to learning a new language. Seems like we even use the same term: acquisition for both.