Sunday, September 07, 2014

The Funny Shit Old(er) People Say

I was telling my daughter about this 16 year old kid that is enrolled in my Computers & Technology class. She, being 16, related to the curiosity and interesting nature of it.

Of course, her very immediate question to me was, "what was the oldest student you've ever had?" I am not certain of the exact age but I am certain he was in his 70's, may have been 80+.

I was teaching a non-credit workshop, a computer primer. The subject was Microsoft Word, it was Word 2000 at that time. I was going over the icons on the toolbar and got to the disk icon (the one circled in red in the figure here in this post). I mentioned that the disk was the icon for the save command. Before I could utter another word, this older gentlemen slammed his hand on the desk and said (and I am coming as close as I can, it's been 15 years), "a disk, hot damn, I always thought it was a television set and I could never figure out why there would be a TV up there!"

That was his revelation. The whole class started laughing and we all had a good time with it then moved on. It was one of those moment you don't forget.


Tommy Owens said...

When you think about it, many of the icons that have meaning to us are incomprehensible to a new user. A 1990's era magnetic disk means "save". Two reels with a tape between them means voicemail. How about "CC" and "BCC" email copy options - who under the age of 40 has ever seen carbon paper? An antique radio-era microphone means voice commands...

Chris said...

Some excellent points. I still have an 8" and a 5.25" floppy disk that I unleash on students occasionally....funny reactions.