Archives for posts with tag: computers

I am going to tell you something about which I know very little. If you want to stop reading now, I understand.

Recently we had some water damage that required moving everything in our home office. Desk, bookcases, and the contents of a closet had to be relocated. It was an inconvenience but we managed alright.

The biggest problem was disconnecting all the electronics that we depend on. This involved our computer and related equipment. We have a wireless network that requires a modem and router. Additionally, our phones are connected through a device that routes our calls over the internet. This allows us to have a “home” phone without the high monthly expense that usually accompany it.

I also have a desktop device into which I scan receipts, business cards, and other documents and it stores them in digital files. Complicating matters even more is the fact that the cell phone reception in our house is abysmal without a device called a Microcell. This device furnished by our cell phone provider boosts the frequency to allow use of mobile phones inside the house.

You have probably concluded from my explanation above that I am somewhat technologically impaired. Nevertheless I managed to move all this equipment and maintain functionality over a several week period while the damaged flooring and walls were repaired.

Then came the happy day that all the repairs were completed and we could put everything back in place. It was going to be a bit of work but I had done so well with moving everything without losing connectivity. I was not worried. I should have been!

The web of gadgets, wires, USB ports, Ethernet cables, coaxial cables, power supplies and connections to a modem, router, CPU, monitor, etc. complicated by multiple user names and passwords presented quite a challenge. Eventually everything was reconnected properly but I could not get connection to the internet. After calling my ISP (I threw that in just to appear smarter than I am), the customer support person on the phone told me her equipment showed that I had a strong signal. She could not understand why I was not connected. The only thing left was to schedule a technician to come to my house. After agreeing to a time for the on-site tech support I hung up the phone and stomped around the house (this was not the first time during this process) in complete frustration.

Despair Alone Being Alone Archetype Archet

After a while of fussing and fuming I realized that there was one thing I had not done. What harm could it do? Maybe it would work. So I re-booted my computer. Turned it off, waited 20 seconds and then turned it back on. Voila! I am a genius! Everything began to work exactly as it should.

Photo of Reboot - Buena Park, CA, United States. Logo

Later (much later) I realized that the same thing probably happens in life, not just with electronics. Problems arise. Difficulties come. All my efforts fail to produce the desired results. Frustration sets in and I behave in very unseemly ways. I try everything I know and things don’t get better. The harder I try the more negative feelings take over. Why can’t I learn to stop? Step away. Shut down. Re-boot.

Sometimes you just need to get away from it all. That might mean a vacation or just going outside for a walk or a quiet moment. Disengaging from the task at hand can clear your mind and calm your nerves. Simply taking a break can give a different perspective and help to maintain or regain balance in one’s life.

When things are not going well, the psalmist encourages us to “be still,” to “quiet down before God (and) be prayerful before him” (Psalm 37:7). Re-boot!

Jamie Jenkins

 

 

 

 

Change 4

I don’t like change.

I am comfortable starting my day pretty much the same way all the time, or at least most of the time. An occasional break from routine is good but before long I want things to get back to normal.

I know that change is sometimes necessary but most of the time I resist it. Once you find a way to do something, why change it. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Why mess with something that works? That is the way I am wired, but I realize that my way of doing things is not always the best or only way.

John F. Kennedy said, “Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” I understand that. It’s just that I am comfortable with most things the way they are. At the same time I understand that progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.

 

Change

Although I don’t like change, I am willing, with some reluctance, to alter my routine and try something new. After a while I can even embrace change but it is not easy.

I mentioned in one of my previous writings that I recently acquired an electric vehicle (EV). It is quite different from an internal combustion engine (ICE) automobile in many ways. I was a bit skeptical at first but after almost three months and 2400 miles (with no gasoline) I have been converted. I have come to really enjoy the quiet and comfortable ride. And contrary to what many people think, it is a real car with plenty “get-up-and-go.” I have also contributed to better air quality because it has no emissions.

For several years I have paid my bills electronically through the bank’s online bill pay service. No stamps or envelopes to buy. No checkbook. Beginning in 2015 my church pledge will be charged to my credit card.

In 1925 Mayor Walter A. Sims leased an abandoned auto racetrack and committed the city of Atlanta to develop it into an airfield. The 287 acres of land was renamed Candler Field after its former owner’s family, including Coca-Cola magnate Asa Candler. That was the first step that led to Atlanta becoming a major transportation hub. Today it is home to the world’s busiest airport.

Change 3

I am grateful for the ability to hop on an airplane in Atlanta and go just about anywhere in the world. How else could I visit my grandchildren, and their parents, on the other side of the globe.

My son reminds me that I once said we would never have a cell phone. Why did we need to be able to talk on the phone from anywhere at anytime. Later I succumbed to the advanced technology and purchased my first “bag phone” that was about the size of a small briefcase. And today I won’t leave home without my “smart phone” in my pocket.

Although most of my retail purchases are transacted in a brick and mortar business, I have done my share of shopping online. In fact, with the last four cars purchased I went to the automobile dealer’s showroom only to sign paperwork and pick up the vehicle. Research and negotiation was all done online or by phone.

Email, text messaging and webcams which are a regular part of my routine could hardly have been imagined when I bought my first computer, a Commodore 64. The first video game was Pong, a far cry for the realistic graphics in today’s video arcade.

Just last night I had a conversation with my thirty-two year old son about Roku, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire Stick, Apple TV, and Crackle. If I understood it , I would explain it to you. The digital age has transformed the way we work, play, and relate to each other. It offers far more than I can comprehend.

With all the advances in technology and the changes they bring to our everyday life, I am grateful for the words of the Statement of Faith of the United Church of Canada: “We are not alone, we live in God’s world. We believe in God who has created and is creating, who has come in Jesus, the Word made flesh, to reconcile and make new, who works in us and others by the Spirit. We trust in God.”

We are not alone. We live in God’s world. We trust in God the Creator and Sustainer of all that is good.

Change. Scary. Hopeful.

Jamie Jenkins