I Have that degree Somewhere
For somebody with a college degree, I am one who understands very few of any of the devices upon which I rely.*
That’s why The Way Things Work by David Macaulay — among many of his illustrated books —was such a practical tutorial for somebody like me.
How much I don’t know about so many things which I take for granted is staggering, and expands exponentially — has become more of theme for this blog than aging!
The older we grow the greater becomes our wonder at how much ignorance one can contain without bursting one’s clothes. ~Mark Twain
Of course, I don’t know if Mark Twain really said that — but he lived through to his seventies, so that quote sounds like something an old person would say.
For example I know nothing about my computer(s) except what they prompt me to do.
For all I know there really are leprechauns inside that make it go.
In college, I had the chance to learn. Having worked as a ”gopher” at the Computer Science Center at the University of Maryland, I could have asked where I worked. But, I never thought about what made them go.
Is there a lesson for today?
Because computers took up so much floor space they looked too mighty for me to use. I never once thought I would use one — much less depend on so many!
Yet, as computers decreased in size they increased in ubiquity — certainly in my life!
Is there anything in my daily life that is not at least influenced by computers?
These electronically delivered books have helped me trace out the considerable boundaries of my . . . ignorance of the times in which I live, and how we got to these uncertain times.
However, more startlingly than my dependency on computers, is the ease with which I rely on the unseen “medics” who work on my Mac — remotely gaining access to it, in my home, and putting those imaginary leprechauns back to work.
I Didn’t Learn THAT in College
Back then we were freaked about protecting our privacy!
Now, I actually PAY “someone” to link into my hard drive and solve the problems that prevent me from traveling on the Internet to stuff I think I want to know.
I can’t change anybody but myself — but, I can change how I relate to people in these uncertain times. (The Orignal Serenity Prayer)
It’s like a continuing ed course.
Even at my age — and especially when I am busting at the seams of my jeans.
Just as darkness is the absence of light, ignorance is the absence of knowledge, and should not be mistaken for a point of view. ~ Robert Brault, 2017