Sussman: Technology for we oldtimers – The Newark Advocate
I was born in the mid-1940s. Our home phone number was 1126. There were no area codes or direct dialing.
We had a dial on our telephone, but it was not activated until I was in first grade. Prior to that time we asked the operator to get a person or a number. In first grade I was able to dial one of my friends directly. My mother would call the operator at 10 a.m. on Sunday to get a call through to her brother in California at 3 p.m.
Our home address was Sussman at Woodside Mt. Vernon, Ohio. Outside of the city most folks had names for their addresses.
My first car, a 1956 Chevrolet, purchased in 1959 had an equipment list that included the following: radio, heater, defroster, and whitewall tires. That was it. When I attended college in the 1960s, I used a slide rule for calculations in my accounting major. Google it! I wrote letters in cursive, opened a checking account in Providence Rhode Island. In high school I had a savings account in Columbus.
In the 1990s all my employees had pagers. When our pager buzzed, there was a one-line message such as call the office. Since there were no cell phones, one had to find a pay phone and put a quarter in to call the office. Our office was equipped with word processers, the forerunners to today’s computers.
I finally obtained my first cell phone. It was a flip phone. I said all that to say this: I am technologically challenged. Like others when my phone died a few weeks ago I was lost. The lady at the phone store discussed back up on my dead phone and the cloud. She could have been speaking in Russian as well as technologically. My phone, unknown to me, was backed up so I did not lose my photos or my contacts.
I passionately believe that IT people are locked up nine months of the year generally to play advanced video games. Apparently, they are freed for three months at the beginning of the year to redo all systems that I have become familiar with during the past year.
I received an email from my bank and another from my health provider advising me that great new systems are coming. These new systems will be operated with a password made up of one capital letter, at least six lower case letters, a number, and a sign. After I am nearly in the systems through my new passwords and a code sent to my phone, I am then shown a picture in which I identify all panels that include a bicycle. Next, I can now pay bills, reserve hotel reservations in most cities, probably bet on the Kentucky Derby or find out the price of used cars, and yes get my health info or bank balance. I now have a large hidden book with all my passwords. I used to have a rolodex, Google it.
Write Mike Sussman at email@example.com