Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Computers and Pilot Mountain School

Today I picked up my laptop from the "emergency clinic" pc medics. It had been there for what turned out to be a minor repair that took five minutes to fix, after a two day search and recovery operation. I'm using those terms, comparing all this to a crisis intervention, because I need to use clear images to get my point across.

I suppose the inventors of computers and the internet had to be creative as well to establish a new technical language that the children who sat in the seats at Pilot Mountain School would eventually understand if they would survive this brave new world. Back then a mouse was something the teacher ran from, especially if the class clown slipped it into her desk drawer when she was out of the room. A web was behind the seldom used bookcase. A virus was what gave them polio or flu. A desktop was where they rested their elbows when they were daydreaming, and a laptop was where they found solace when they had had a bad day at school.

Computers were not unheard of, make no mistake. Even in the fifties and sixties, children knew there was such a thing because they read about them in the Weekly Reader, the serial publication they received each Monday. One lady I interviewed remembered the article that pictured a computer the size of a room and the brash claim that one day, all the words of an encyclopedia could be contained in a small disc. They scoffed. Unbelievable, they said, but now, decades later, they are the very ones who made the successful transition into the technical age. They were not born into it. They were forced into it, and they have adapted and thrived and now relish in the wonders of the internet. Okay, so they ask their grandchildren how to work those fancy buttons, but still they relish.

And they can do it at the school that once held them captive in wooden seats. Yes, wireless internet access is available. During all those daydreams, I'd bet those children would have never imagined this marvel would come to pass.

Facility Coordinator, Connie, takes advantage of wifi in the back corner of the current Pilot Mountain School Cafe.

Catch of the day,


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