IT for the Golden Age

The idea of this article came after a fantastic technical visit I made at the beginning of the month. During the visit, I remembered, among other things, the first time I used a computer, and I realized that it was at least thirty-three years ago; I'm aware of the number because I turned 40 this month.

On Thursday, Sept 30th, I had the opportunity to meet and visit a beautiful woman who is 86 years old. She was having some issues with her computer and printer. A great friend took me there to help this lady set her printer and boost her PC. 

The first thought I had was, "Wow, this is a challenge" I know very well what to do and how to fix things; But I just wanted to make it easier for this lady. I started to work, and during our conversation, I realized how exciting and clever a person she is; she commented about how the first computer occupied a whole room and how her beloved husband was involved in the space program. 

Then, when I completed the fixes, I asked her to work on the computer to see how she uses her computer typically. Watching her go step by step, with her routine, gave me the idea to write this article and to realize how unique humans are, that we evolve with our environment, and in this case, within the IT world. 

IT is continuously evolving; disruptive events can generate global changes in months or a few years. The way we work, communicate, shop, or sell have entirely changed in the last decades, and it will continue, for sure. For us, we continue to learn and adapt. 

Although you're maybe an active IT person now, there will be a moment, perhaps, after your retirement where you might not need all the latest tools available and instead, maybe you'll be more comfortable and confident with the few that you use most, that you like, and find easy to use. 

At that moment, our IT focus needs to reduce to this essential environment,, like banking, shopping, playing, and communicating. Although outside this situation, things continue to change and advance, here we need to focus on specific needs.

At that moment, things should be more accessible and adapted to an older adult. Right now, the youngest generations have been using computers and depend on them in some ways (online shopping, news, keeping in touch with family/friends) no matter if you’re a baby boomer, a generation X, or a millennial. If you are lucky enough to get to be 86 and still active, for sure, any IT accessibility improvement would be helpful. Indeed, this has been happening for a while, but I'm super confident that it will increase as continue to happen, and I believe there is a beautiful opportunity to help people in this golden age. 

Another wonderful thing about this visit was watching how there are thousands of ways to do something; each has its own way of navigating and feeling comfortable with it. Our brain is so fantastic that it makes a habit of repetitive tasks, and when you do it your way, there's confidence and relaxation for you as you work. Another benefit is that you can always use the X to close the window and start over if something goes wrong. At this point, there's no rush; the idea is to enjoy and be relaxed. 

Also, I realized that this is something more and more common nowadays. This situation happened to me with my parents; we increased the icon size, I explained how to get the news for my Dad or using WhatsApp or an E-Reader app to my Mom. I have to admit that sometimes I may not have the best patience, but always we appreciate that parents are learning and active. 

We hear it all of the time, "I'll ask my grandson to check online," or "sure they will know how to use it and will explain it to me ." It's like there's a generational "expectation" to help with access for parents and grandparents to the new IT tools. 

I thank God and the universe for this opportunity. As soon as we left the apartment, I thanked my good friend Ms. Donna for the opportunity to visit there and to help. It was undoubtedly a formative experience. 

As I said, with the vision of the future and acknowledgment of the present, there's an ample opportunity to make things easier for adult-senior people on the IT-Tech side. Indeed, now I appreciate having helped my Dad and being able to help my Mom, family, co-workers, and relatives with this. At the same time, I hope to get to my 80's, remain active, and enjoy computers as I do now.


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