Anywhere you look, technology is available to enhance — or interfere, depending on how you see it — with every aspect of your daily life. Whether you already embrace technology or simply want to develop some skills to be able to use more devices or services, consider these three reasons why you should work to become tech-savvy this summer. Then you can explore opportunities to learn more online, with lessons from friends or family or classes offered locally here in Omaha.
1. Keep in Touch with Family Far and Wide
While many people still love the personal touch of exchanging handwritten letters through the mail with friends and family, you may find it difficult to interest younger relatives in this practice. You might also dislike the delay caused by delivery timings dictated by the postal service.
When you become tech-savvy, you can keep in touch with family far and wide through many opportunities, including:
As your skills expand, you can even get involved with slightly harder-to-use technologies like:
2. Expand Your Library with a Click
Reading is one of the most enjoyable pastimes, whether you like escaping into a book of fiction, learning from a nonfiction title or keeping abreast of current events with newspapers and magazines.
Keeping reading material on hand can be a challenge, though. You must spend time visiting a variety of shops or websites to find new print titles, hope titles you’re interested in are available at the library or borrow books from friends. Forget those hassles and upgrade your reading hobby with an e-reader.
Whether you prefer a device dedicated to reading like a Kindle or a Nook or have another device like a tablet or smartphone that can run e-reading apps, going high-tech with your books and magazines lets you instantly expand your library with a click.
And don’t worry about dropping tons of money on subscriptions or purchases for your e-reader, either. The Omaha public library system has invested in OverDrive, a way to lend e-books to library cardholders. You can choose from thousands of “print” titles or download audio books that read your favorite stories to you. Using OverDrive through the Omaha library also gives you access to popular videos to watch.
3. Up Your Learning Game
Are you an inveterate learner, always on the search for classes to attend or speakers to see? Consider upping your tech game this summer by registering for MOOCs through popular services like Coursera or edX.
MOOC stands for “massive open online course,” and there are literally thousands of possible MOOCs you can enroll in completely free of charge over the internet. Imagine telling your daughter the next time she calls that you’re taking a history class offered by Harvard through edX. Or picture the look on your neighbor’s face when you tell her you’re now a Stanford student thanks to a MOOC you’re taking in ancient civilizations. And much better than impressing others: You’ll be enriching your own life with knowledge.
Learning new technology can be daunting, especially if you're starting from scratch with a brand-new smartphone or tablet. The net benefit you’ll enjoy, however, is worth the time you’ll commit to becoming tech-savvy this summer.
If you're not sure where to start, ask the staff here at Hickory Villa about options for local classes or tech help right here in the community.