Technology thanks

thank youImage: haikudeck

I had some big outages away from technology earier this year because we were changing the copperwire service over to nbn. Since I have been on the nbn my phone and internet service have been uninterrupted and so I have been able to get on with my life where technology plays a significant role. I am grateful for that. There is a lot to be thankful for.

  1. I am working with a group of people who can use phones and tablets but who haven’t been able to make the best use of technology to allow their skills, talents and competencies to be shared and showcased. Since we have done that they can see the world really does value them and what they do . It has inspired and encouraged them and that is what blogging and social media can do for people. They can connect , share, get feedback and grow themselves in a really good way.
  2. I learn a lot from the internet. I can find out anything I want whenever I want. I can do online courses, belong to online groups , share my own knowledge and views online and learn from others. It is a growth mindset which gets encouraged through lifelong learning and collaboration.
  3. I have been pleased to work with various and varied organisations to help resolve online issues, app development and improvement and have valid client input which improves how we go about things online.
  4. I’d be lost without Google maps. I have used that a lot to navigate myself around a city which is in a constant state of flux because of infrastructure changes .
  5. Technology allows me to connect with anyone anywhere and to grow and develop positive relationships even if I can’t see them personally or see them very often. It safeguards those relationships so they still have a positive input into life and living.

I use technology to grow my ideas, reflect, find things out, improve my skills. It has a key growth function in my life. shawnblanc has written a post about why he thinks it’s worth being thankful to technologyGaeltek has also written a thankfulness post.  Mashable has also written a well thought out thankfulness post. Yes, we are thankful.

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Blogging isn’t dead

bloggingImage: 10 amazing blogs about blogging – Corey Wainwright 

 

The internet can be capricious at times and come up with rumours and thoughts which, if you do not pay attention, will lead you astray or confuse you. Half the time it’s to create a thing and then that thing is discussed , reported, highlighted, memed. It’s artificial content creation stimulation. There has been this thing about blogging being dead. There has been a belief that individual bloggers are a thing of the past. Not if you go by the WordPress reader. That alone is sufficient indication there are plenty of individual bloggers who are confident, successful and clear voices. There are a lot of new individual bloggers because a number of people are connected from home for their own purposes. There are artists, writers, musicians, tech people, UX and UI designers, game creators, cooks, chefs, foodies, fashion followers, sports people and  gadget creators and so on. Etsy has had a big impact and a number of Etsy shops have their owners on Instagram to make that personal connection with their potential clients. They often build their network on Instagram or Facebook and then their blog offers more insight into how they produce their items. It’s the personal touch.  People want to meet and know real people on the internet these days. Blogs can also provide documentation and journaling capacities so that people can trace their personal growth in an area. People want to explore their creativity and ideas more and even Instagram posts are increasingly becoming more like blog posts. It’s the social and emotional involvement which has increased and so blogging offers that way of individual processing of events , creativity and information.

That is not to say group blogs don’t exist and aren’t a vibrant part of the internet. Blogs are part of mainstream  internet content. They are no longer the blogosphere. Group blogs can operate like modern day newsletters. They can allow a group to develop an image and history and allow everyone in that group to participate even if they cannot be at every meeting or activity. They allow a group to have an online presence and image with the group members can tap into but also the wider community.

MotherJones has an interesting look at current blogging practices . Blog Tyrant looks at some of the statistics and analyses some of the trends.  Neal Samudre has an article  on Huffington Post about allowing your blog to prosper.  Blogs have changed and they always will change. These days they tend to document and share information in a way which is connected to our need for information in context.

Life without the internet

If you are feeling swamped, overwhelmed and dictated to by the internet, then yes, leave it. Take a break. Get away from it . Live your life. Paul Miller gives some interesting insights because his job relies on the internet but he hasn’t really known a life without the internet and social media. The difficulty with the internet is that is has become very dictatorial and proscriptive and Paul Miller has discovered insight into that by not being tied to the internet. After my 3 lengthy outages from my internet and home phone this year I found that I did have more time, I was doing things differently and I was able to become more involved with real life. I was never bored. I have other interests and other ways of connecting with people. I was still using my phone and computer apps for things…those which were not dependent on an internet connection. It was hard to do some business activities because so many of them rely on an internet connection. I know really intelligent, vibrant, creative people who have very little to do with the internet and don’t want to participate in what they see as very low level engagement and thought. The internet is there for us to use. It is amazingly helpful and does facilitate so many ideas and collaborations which could not or would not otherwise occur. How you use it and why you use it is your decision and I think this video looks at how we can sometimes let the internet run our lives and personalities. Worth viewing and then worth doing an internet use audit.

Managing your online identity

If you google Cathy Woods you will find many references to the exonerated Nevada murderess who erroneously served 35 years in gaol. Google is swamped with people with your name who lead interesting lives. You do need to know what comes up under your name if you are running online accounts. Does it worry me? No. I could probably pay to get my profile up there on Google. Do I need to? No. People can find me if they want to because I manage my online identity so that those I want to find me can. If you google sally07 then my Twitter account will come up and it’s the reason I can’t change my Twitter handle. I have the account in my name but the handle is my old one from the days where we didn’t use our real names. The world changed and I blogged about my decision to be myself online. That Twitter handle has to stay, though.  It carries with it a lot of online positives. I don’t link my Facebook account to anything. Facebook is my online home, I suppose. I check the settings regularly because Facebook makes changes and then doesn’t let you know necessarily . It also broadcasts when you are online, what comments you make, makes you available on Messenger and tells everyone what you like. Stalkers paradise right now. I have turned the sidebar off and I log out now so that I maintain my privacy and the privacy of others. I have changed settings so friends of friends cannot see things. You really need to check your settings on online sites and you really need to be aware of how this may or may not be affecting you. My online identity is not the whole of me but it is a genuine facet of me.

Danielle Di-Masi’s video is a good way to start thinking about your online identity and the UNSW article about her follows that up. Forbes also has a good article about managing your online identity and then a link to some tips for improving what you do.

Digital Eye Strain

Digital Eye Strain (DES) is a self inflicted condition we have brought upon ourselves because we use digital devices so frequently and our world requires that we do in order to work, play and organise our lives. Phones and tablets put out enough light to illuminate a dark room. That ought to remind us we need to take care of our eyes and we need to respond more pro actively to looking after them. It comes down to knowing what to do, taking action and reminding others to take action. Constantly staring at screens is creating problems for people so we need to be sensible and build in the health routines which will alleviate some of these problems. Vision Optique has some helpful inforgraphics to show us what some of the problems are and then some very helpful ideas to show us how to improve what we are doing so we avoid digital eyestrain. None of it is hard. Optometrytimes looks at how DES is affecting people and what can be done about it. Again there are some good visuals to help us.

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