Deepening the Conversation

thinking about questions of authority, technology, learning, and 2.0 in academic libraries

Late admission of techno-faux-bia


I’m finding the tech-NOT meme going around to be oddly comforting. I think what I like about it is knowing that I stand pretty firmly in the middle of the pack of folks who stand pretty far ahead of the pack in thinking about new technologies in the workplace. And I’m really ok with that!

So, my tech-NOTs?

  • Database construction. Access is one of two software programs that have thrown me to the mat without breaking a sweat. And I can understand database construction only by glancing at it slyly with my peripheral vision.
    • Photoshop also handed me my a$s.
  • Programming languages. I have the basic HTML and CSS to handcode pages, and to borrow and gut stuff I like from others. But I’m kinda stuck there. No flash or java, or even the ability to make DreamWeaver do the things I don’t know how to do. (I also have no idea how to customize the CSS in templated services like this blog or my LJ)
  • I couldn’t install my wifi router. In fact, I mangled it so badly I had to call the cable company to get my internet service working again after I gave up. (I want wifi!)
  • I don’t get SecondLife (and I think virtual worlds are going to have significant impact on how we do librarianship and education in the next decade)
  • My stereo is an JBL Soundstage/iPod dock (much to the chagrin of my former soundguy — looks like a previously unknown theme of soundguys and librarians is emerging…)
  • I’ve never tried Skype, altho now that I have people overseas (it’s expensive to call Namibia!0I’m thinking about it
  • I am so intimidated by VOIP stuff that I have never done the Uncontrolled Vocabulary call-in show, and am so embarrassed about it I’ve never listened to the podcast.
  • I have no idea how trackback works, and was worried that I was somehow having bad nettiquette by not using it. And was relieved as all hell when it worked invisibly.
  • I don’t like working on a laptop. I mean, they’re handy and portable and all, but ugh! I really dislike them!
  • I am apparently the only person in the world who has ever had a bad Mac experience. My iMac crashed constantly, I lost half a workday every day for two months on it. I really dislike Macs.
  • I want my phone to make phone calls and store addresses. That is all. Texting is nice at conferences, but it just isn’t my killer app. Plus, I’m afraid it would expensive like crack!

What I think is important and makes me technically able is that I am generally willing. I’m not sure that my desire to learn PHP/SQL would ever make me any good at it, but if there was a task I needed to do with it and the time to learn it, I could apply myself. And, like Rochelle, my interest in technology has more to do with serving (and understanding and hoping to get ahead of the future)my patrons than techno- or gadget-lust. (nothing wrong with those, they’re just not my inspirations).

So, are you techno-faux? What are your tech-NOTs?


5 thoughts on “Late admission of techno-faux-bia

  1. Rudy, the first thing you should know is that, from what I can tell, most people call in to Unvocab with their cell phones. No VoIP needed. But that’s not the most affordable option for some folks, including me, and that’s where VoIP is handy.

    So let me volunteer my services to help get you past the VoIP intimidation cycle. I understand where it comes from and, with my help, we can kick its butt back to FUDville. No obligation to participate in the show. Just a friend helping a friend.

    Of course, none of this is an excuse for not listening! You’ll have to come up with a better reason than that. 😉

  2. I haven’t tried SecondLife yet, but I’m hoping that my brief stint as a WoW gamer will help me when I finally do get into it.

    I despise texting, and am glad to hear I’m not the only holdout. If you need me ASAP, call me. If not, email me.

    My embarrassing admission is that I hate Macs. I find the one-button-on-the-mouse thing creepy and unnatural. And I can never close a window because there’s no X. I am hyperventilating just thinking about the Mac upstairs in our IT workroom.

    Embarrassing admission #2? I hate feedburners. i despise them. They throw me into anxiety attacks when I don’t check them for a week and I see I have 2000000 things to read. *panic* I use and send the blogs and such that i care to follow straight to my email account. That’s right. You can keep your feedburners and other cool apps – I have gmail, tyvm.

    Shh. My colleagues think I am fresh and hip and ‘with it’ on new technologies. I am also just now learning how to use the iPod I bought last year before they got cool touchscreens. But we have a Learning 2.0 initiative that deals with that, so I’m okay, since there’s a module.

    I don’t dig creating databases, but in my former life, I was a SAS and STATA geek. I refused to take the PERL class in library school, though, because other than HTML, I don’t do programming.

    *sigh* I am feeling terminally uncool.

  3. What I really liked about this meme is that we sort of view some folks as having all the mad skillz we wish we had, and by exposing what we don;t have to the sun, we can see that we stand on equal footing. The paving stones are in different places, but none of us has all the tech comforts we think we need and we all seem to be doing just fine!

    I am going to have to take your rssfwd advice, because I am *terrible* about looking at my bloglines!

    Plus, Colleen, you can write like nobody’s business! Take your cool cred all over the map!

  4. Greg, the sad thing is I knew that. and yet somehow, phone/computer synchrony threw me into an avoidance spin! We’ll see if I can figure it out out for tonight.

  5. @rudibrarian – *blush* thanks!

    And it’s true – it’s always nice to find that other folks have things they’re not experts at, and that we’re all in this to help each other and our patrons. It’s easy to forget, though, when we get overwhelmed and feel like we should do everything. This is a nice reminder that we probably *shouldn’t* be trying to do everything – it’s a matter of choosing the most useful and making them work for us. Something we librarians as a breed should likely have tattooed/Post-It’d to our collective foreheads.

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