Life doesn’t come with instructions. Whether we’re pushed out or carefully extracted, we enter this world ill prepared for the journey ahead of us.
In our youth, the journey was thrilling and eventful; we often jumped to conclusions and leapt before thinking and did so with little consequence. But we’re older now and know better.
Technology, is best used with knowledge, but sometimes it doesn’t come with paper instructions and just seems daunting.
It wasn’t always that way. Once upon a time, when you purchased a product it came with instructions that seamlessly guided you along, so that you could enjoy the device. These were usually written on crisp white paper and after you read them, you were well prepared to use the device. Then you’d carefully fold the paper instructions and store them neatly away for future reference.
But the future came quickly, without warning the instructions began to appear on recycled paper. These thin greyish slips of paper easily tore, and usually didn’t offer a grace period, that is a small window of time in which in complete frustration you’d ball up the instructions and promptly tossed them into the trash. Later, you’d retrieve them with a cooler head; logic prevailed. You’d get it, you needed those instructions.
And then the instructions changed form again, now they were being printed in multiple languages. English on one side and Spanish or Chinese on the other. You were left more frustrated than before and joked about it; if you didn’t understand the instructions in English, then how could you possibly understand them in another language?
And then, without warning they had the last laugh, when they intentionally stopped putting the instructions into the box!
Instead a CD needed to be inserted and run on a computer. And that too began to change as you could only gain access to the instructions by visiting the website and downloading them. A quandary if you didn’t have the knowledge to download a PDF, yet another acronym that popped into the English vernacular.
Which brings me back to the top of this page; that you’re not born with life instructions in hand; but perhaps you don’t need them to be. After all, we have this unique ability to communicate, that is we can paint and erect a sign to prevent others from falling off a cliff. Technology shouldn’t be viewed as a cliff.
Besides, the journey of life is fun, meant to be enjoyed; teaching, educating and sharing knowledge are important to character, integrity and human development.
It’s nice to know that there’s still instructions included on things that smell good, like boxes of cake mix. And if that changes and a cake mix requires a kitchen mobile APP, well it’s equally nice to know there’s a 50+ community available to help you.
Taking the fear out of technology and yes, there’s AARP TEK for that.