What A 92 Year Old Man Taught Me About Social Media

This past weekend, my 92 year old grandpa came to visit my family for a weekend. It was a great time on reflection on what is most important …

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This past weekend, my 92 year old grandpa came to visit my family for a weekend. It was a great time on reflection on what is most important in life and essentially, what my grandpa understood about the latest and greatest trends. Here are the things that my grandpa was quite impressed with this weekend:

1. The Selfie Stick

My family is one of those photo taking families. Every event has to have an enormous amount of pictures because, as kids, we have little to no pictures from our childhood. The ability to take, download and send pictures of the masses to friends and family in the click of a button has to be utilized to its full potential. For that, the world invented the Selfie Stick. When my grandfather, my wife and our two children were taking a photo, I brought out the selfie stick, placed my phone in it and extended it to its full potential. My grandpa’s reply was “wow, that’s fancy”.

  2. The Art of Telecommuting It was a Friday afternoon and I was sitting with family shooting off some emails and outlining some new fresh content for the website. The simple conversation went like this: My grandpa asked, “What are you doing on the computer?” My reply as I took out my headphones: “Working. I am working from here today.” Grandpa: “You can work from home? Wow, that is so neat that you can do that.”

A simple perk of the digital technology era we are living in. As long as your work is cloud based, for the majority, many of us can work just as well (if not better according to this study) from home. This Harvard Business Review article states that it saved almost $1,900 per employee costs for the nine months Ctrip was testing this with its employees.
Not only is grandpa impressed, but so are other companies.

3. The Power of Social Media

Grandpa wanted us to send our pictures to his daughter so she could see all of us. Little did he know that we are all already connected on Facebook. I showed him that by simply uploading my picture to Facebook, all my cousins, aunts and uncles would all be able to see the photo at the same time. It was much more efficient than sending them an individual picture. Not to mention the convenience of looking at the photo when it was most convenient for them.
I thought of some other ideas to introduce the older generation to social media. If my grandpa had a smart phone, I would have set him up with an Instagram account and followed all of my cousins. That would be a simple way that he could log online and view all of our pictures from our families to stay connected.

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4. The “Cloud”

There are a lot of ways to speed up our internet connections including the option of storing items in a cloud type environment. Rather than explain the complexity of how an item is taken from a device, ran from one connection to a data center server and enter into a never ending world of questions about how that is possible, I explained that is how computers are much more efficient in this day and age. Back in the day, you use to have the floppy disk and other mediums to store information. I explained the beauty of sending files through the internet to storage facility (a data center) rather than storing it on a computer. By doing that, we are able to free up memory on our computer and this is a big reason why computers are faster and more durable than ever.

So there you have it, four things that we can teach the older generation about technology. What is your experience in teaching older individuals about the advancements in technology so they are kept in the loop?

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