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General Chat Thread, Kids Can't Use Computers... And This Is Why It Should Worry You in General; Originally Posted by X-13 TBF, I don't expect people to know everything about computers. That's why I'm here. I DO ...
  1. #16


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    Quote Originally Posted by X-13 View Post
    TBF, I don't expect people to know everything about computers. That's why I'm here.

    I DO expect them to READ THE ERROR MESSAGES. It's not hard to read the "no logon servers available" [other messages are available] message so you can tell me.
    I also expect them to be able to tell me what they were doing when it "stopped working" and what the were expecting to happen.

    "I'm not good with computers" is just an excuse.
    i wont argue that point i dont expect them to know everything or in some cases much. Id love it if people would read error messages etc ive even put faq's up to try and get them to screengrab problems and have even said to people on occasions it dosent work is not an error report. I just dont thing some people think like that they see problem - someone else can fix it - solution they dont realise the more info given the easier it is for someone to fix and in a lot of cases they dont want to know they just want it working before it failed. Also lets be honest people dont pay attention for example how many of us just click next next next when installing software and dont see what were clicking i know i have then wonder why it dosent look right as some option that used to be default no longer is (or in the case of digiblue i think the next button and back in one step get transposed so you end up clicking without looking going next back next back and never get to the install)

  2. #17

    seawolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by X-13 View Post
    There's about 20 references to Apple in it.

    All glory to the fruit.
    What article were you reading?

    References made in the article:

    Apple = 0
    iOS = 1
    iPad = 2
    iPhone =3
    Mac or Macbook = 5
    OSX = 3
    Microsoft = 5
    Windows = 12
    Google = 3
    Android = 1
    Linux = 3

    So, total references to anything Apple is 14. Microsoft references number 17. There are 4 Google references and 3 for Linux. Seems pretty balanced in that regard to me.

    Let me quote this bit from the article:

    "iOS is a lost cause, unless you jail-break, and Android isn’t much better. I use Ubuntu-Touch, and it has possibilities."

    That doesn't seem to be a "hail to the fruit" to me.

  3. #18

    seawolf's Avatar
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    This post has received some interesting comments. Some of them seem to have entirely missed the point of the article. The author may have been a bit over the top (or arrogant) in some parts of the article (English is also not the author's native language, so that has to be taken into account)

    The point was this - Kids Can't Use Computers.

    Here's the problem - it is too often true. I had a teacher come to me the other day describing how a more than small percentage of the students in his class (Year 8) didn't know what to do with a USB drive that they were handed. They truly had no clue how to access files on it or save to it. One (new to the school) didn't even know how to logon to a computer (Windows 7).

    Here's the bigger problem - there is the myth of the digital native, so people just assume kids know more about computers than others because they can use google, facebook, twitter, instagram, and snapchat. That means these kids aren't actually being taught how to use a computer. And, I don't just mean a PC (or a Mac). I'm talking about tablets as well. Yep, they can unlock it and open up Safari or download a game and play it (as long as they don't have to type in the details for an Apple ID). Too many of them cannot setup their email (or even follow the instructions to do this), or many other basic computer tasks. This means I'm seeing kids with less computer skills than those coming through 10 years ago.

    Here's the biggest problem - these same kids are going to have great difficulty in a world that is increasingly consumed by technology in every industry. And many schools are doing very little about it. "Give them all a <insert device here>" doesn't solve this problem. These kids need to be taught, not expected to just pick it up through osmosis.

    "Here you go kid, I'm giving you the car keys, now go figure out how to drive it."

  4. Thanks to seawolf from:

    tmcd35 (31st March 2014)

  5. #19

    X-13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
    Mac or Macbook = 5
    9 actually [+1 for "Mac"]

    Click image for larger version. 

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    10 Mac/Macbook + 1 iOS + 2 iPad + 3 iPhone + 3 OSX = 19.

    So, about 20 references to Apple.

    Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
    That doesn't seem to be a "hail to the fruit" to me.
    Also, that was a tongue-in-cheek comment. Poking fun at the usual "it's Apple; therefore it's awesome" mentality that seems to be going around.
    Last edited by X-13; 31st March 2014 at 10:53 AM.

  6. #20

    nephilim's Avatar
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    I read the article through, the environment he seems to work in is Apple heavy, not himself. He states its other staff he helps which use apple products. He said late in the article he uses a Macbook with Ubuntu and Mac OSX when the mood takes him. He bashed a lot of companies in there, both rightly and wrongly.

    It is unfair to say that the OS manufacturers have made this generation of dumb users, when in fact it is a lack of proper skills being taught. I have often advocated, for good IT lessons, you need to have hardware savvy people, ideally the technicians, to go through the subject. Have 30 breaker machines, which the kids can strip and put back together. They'll be much more inclined to learn then if they can make and break it without fear.

    My daughter (who is nearly 5) is able to install an OS (albeit with help from me), she can add apps to a phone, she can add contacts too a phone, in fact I gave her my old galaxy note (with no sim) to play with, and she gets along fine, she can put the wifi on, she can also do this on my mrs laptop. By this guys standard, she can use a PC.

  7. #21

    seawolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by X-13 View Post
    9 actually [+1 for "Mac"]

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Untitled.png 
Views:	136 
Size:	136.6 KB 
ID:	23642

    10 Mac/Macbook + 1 iOS + 2 iPad + 3 iPhone + 3 OSX = 19.

    So, about 20 references to Apple.
    Missed a few, ya got me. The point still remains. He dogs iOS and most of the Macbook references are to the one that the user at the start handed him.

    He also says "Windows 7 (I hate 8, but that’s another story) and Mac OS X are great operating systems" So, Windows 7 good, OS X good. And he also likes Ubuntu.

    Poking fun at the usual "it's Apple; therefore it's awesome" mentality that seems to be going around.
    Actually, it's usually the exact other way around on Edugeek. Just amazing how an article about how kids can't use computers turns into dogging the guy as a insane fruit-lover because he dare make mention of something Apple-related more than once.
    Last edited by seawolf; 31st March 2014 at 11:01 AM.

  8. #22

    unixman_again's Avatar
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    Adults can't use computers either. We've just had one of the sci techies in with her laptop, who wanted to print a PDF off (an eticket for her holidays). She doesn't have a printer at home and had no idea as to how to either pull it off with a memory stick or email to her college account or (perhaps) access her private emails using a web portal. To use the car analogy, "I've put something in the boot and I don't know how to get it out".

  9. #23
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    All I can say about this subject is "Ubiquitous computing"

  10. #24


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    Quote Originally Posted by sted View Post
    I would be happy to teach kids how to build and install pcs AND i suspect that most of them would enjoy it BUT is it relavant?
    My daughter was after a new PC and wanted something stupidly powerful. I persuaded her not to buy the off the shelf PC she was looking at and to build her own - I wasn't going to be terribly much help being 400 miles away. I did help her with component selection - not much really, just giving her confidence that she wasn't about to blow a few hundred quid on a processor that wouldn't work with the MB. To her credit, she put it all together and it all works. She didn't save much money but she got exactly what she wanted. The real key though is that when something does go wrong, she won't be scared to open up the case and start unplugging bits. She will have the confidence that she can make it all work and that she won't break it just by trying.

    I can't see much to complain about in the article. Most people don't know much about computers and since many rely on them, that is a shame.

  11. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
    there is the myth of the digital native, so people just assume kids know more about computers than others because they can use google, facebook, twitter, instagram, and snapchat.
    Related:



    Seriously... Everyone should watch PBS Idea channel.

    Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
    Actually, it's usually the exact other way around on Edugeek.
    I meant in general. Like the whole "NEW iPHONE DOES xyz..." which has been possible for years on Android/WinPhone. But no, Apple "invented" it. Years after everyone else.

    Quote Originally Posted by nephilim View Post
    It is unfair to say that the OS manufacturers have made this generation of dumb users, when in fact it is a lack of proper skills being taught.
    Partially.

    When the settings are being pushed more and more into the dark depths of the OS, that's on Microsoft/Apple/[Linux flavour specific devs]. IIRC, Windows 7 was advertised as an OS that just got on with it. [A lot of auto/default configs.]

    However, there's also the issue of people not wanting to experiment.

    I [literally] just had the following conversation:

    Art Teacher: I have to cover %other_teacher% and teach science...
    Me: Why not combine Science and Art?
    AT: I'm going to. I do that with all the subjects. [+1 from me. This is a good thing!]
    Me: Even I.T?
    AT: No... I'm "not good with computers".
    Me: I could show you some interesting things you could use in class...
    AT: No... I'm "not good with computers".
    Me: We have graphics tablets... you could use it to draw [whatever] in real-time on the board. Even get one of the kids to draw something.
    AT: No... I'm "not good with computers".

  12. #26

    Bompalompalomp's Avatar
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    His message comes across in a badly condescending way and could do with a rewrite to say the least, and his personal anecdotes related to his own failings are all silly. "I fix the computers in my house and never bothered to tell the kids how, look at how awful society is today!"

    That being ignored, I've noticed this a lot. Parents and teachers are all too quick to say "Oh, my kids are great on their iPads and phones. They tap and click away faster than I ever could." So what? What are they learning by doing that? I've seen kids who tap at monitors expecting the button to press and not in the slightest way knowing how to use a mouse or keyboard. I've seen a year 1 teacher who has all of her kids use a keyboard correctly to type their usernames and passwords and a year 3 teacher whose kids didn't know how to save an image.

    He definitely has a point when he says that things are too locked down, even if it is blunt and incorrect in areas regarding android and others. But I don't think it's easy to point the blame at the locked down systems themselves and their manufacturers. It's not their fault that consumers have no interest in learning the skills. I'd say teh fault mostly lies with the people pushing for kids to exclusively use these. Just another reason why I'm objecting to the Head wanting to get rid of the ICT Room and replace it with iPads because "nobody uses it". Because they don't know how!

  13. #27


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    As much as I had a good chuckle at the 'Can't use computers' section, which I can't help but agree with, this guy is a condescending douchecanoe that needs to lighten up a little.

    I know how PC's work, because I'm interested in them. Always have been. You know what I'm not interested in? Dancing. If the GCSE Performing Arts lesson call down with an issue with the laptop, projector, etc, I can head down there and fix it with no issue. Could I tell you about their routine? Could I explain why the certain warmup stretches they were doing are important? Would I be able to replicate what they're doing? Not a chance. Not one. Okay, dancing isn't applicable to most people in their everyday life, so the example isn't perfect (I could use cars, but I know when I eventually get one I'll tinker and explore because it will be an important machine to me) but the point being people know more about what they're interested in. A dancer would be willing to try a move that I might look at and think "Err, that looks a bit dangerous (for your body), is that safe?". I would quite happily open a computer and start to replace an OEM heat sink with a water cooler, then swap out the memory for good measure. A dancer would probably watch what I'm doing and think "Err, that looks a bit dangerous (for the machine - or maybe me), is that safe?"

    Computers are, in all fairness, going the same way as tablets are. They're becoming very much consumption-orientated devices. No longer is the computer just for the data-crunching corporate office, or the news studio green-screening the weather forecast, or the architect rendering his latest building schematic. It's more than commonplace that Joe and Jane Bloggs Public have a PC at home, to the point that people are actively shocked if otherwise! So yes, I agree that someone at home needs to be able to set up and maintain a small network and be versed on the perils of the internet, but not everybody. Think about here, at school. Everyone isn't a techie - just us. There is a (theoretical) ratio of technicians-to-non-technicians that allows us to keep things running properly. So why should it be different on a home network? Yes, people should read error messages and be taught how to properly report an issue. Yes, everybody should know the 'basic' and common issues (layer 1, mostly) and understand how to troubleshoot them. Should users know what a proxy is? Probably. But should everybody be expected to know how to work the CLI, or how to build a machine from scratch? No. I wouldn't say so. His own example of cars proves this. He uses his car, but he wouldn't have a clue how to build one from scratch. Motor vehicles are just as important as computers in day-to-day life, so why should it be different?

    Regarding 'Techno-Dad to the rescue!' I do have to agree with him to some degree. Kids learn by tinkering, breaking and researching something they're interested in. For me, it was PC's. For my brother, for example, it was his bicycle. I can't count the amount of times I saw him dismantling his. I remember him sat in the back yard with his bike in bits as he replaced the chain and brakes. Me? I just got on my bike and rode it. I took care of it, so it didn't need repairs, but I know if I'd have needed a part replacing I'd have likely asked him to do it, which is precisely my point. "I don't know what I'm doing. $someoneElse does, so I'll ask them. It's safer that way." Admittedly, the better approach if you wanted to learn something would be "I wonder if $someoneElse would be willing to show me how to sort this out?" (which is the approach I always try to take where appropriate). The thing is we're often not demonstrating what we're doing to the person we're fixing the issue for. That's their fault for not taking interest, and that's our fault for not making the subject approachable, which is their fault for being scared of technology, which is our fault for having a walled garden, which is malware vendors fault for crafting malicious files, which is the users fault for not learning about PC's, which is our fault because we do everything for them - You see where this is going. The blame can go round and round in circles but there needs to be work done on both sides, not just one.

    As for the supposition that things would be better if we gave the wheel back to the user and stopped with all the lock-down, heck no. Not in a million years. The kinds of data we have on our networks mean we need these controls, and some phishing attacks and counterfeit websites are so convincing that you can't expect someone who didn't devote their working day to technology to be able to cover their own ass all the time. In this kind of environment, it's just not safe to let users tinker and break things. They can go ahead and do it to their home PC fine, but not our systems. They have a job to do, and our job is to provide them with the tools to do it and to ensure those tools are safe to use. Giving them the reigns means we're not doing that. Any corporate system (which ours essentially are, too) simply cannot open itself up to that many possible avenues of attack, and to propose such is nothing short of absurd.

    Rant over. Gee-gee well played.
    Last edited by Garacesh; 31st March 2014 at 12:24 PM.

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