20 15

Is anyone else stumbling on the technology highway?

Yesterday I renewed MacAfee computer security. "Click to download security for your mobile," the website prompted.

"What's a mobile?" I thought. 'Mobile' is a verb. Both my smart phone and laptop can be moved. Searched for a customer service phone number and gave up.

Often I don't know the correct word to search. It's maddening. I have gone from:

  1. Rotary home phone to a flip phone to a smart phone.
  2. Typewriter to an oversize computer to the Internet to a laptop computer.
  3. Record player, to vinyl records with a turntable, amplifier (forgot the word) and speakers, to tape cassettes to CDs to an I-Pod, ad nauseum.
  4. Television (family home), to a smart TV to Internet streaming. My Sony smart TV was a gift from a boyfriend in 2015. He called me "culturally retarded" because I never owned a TV. I laughed. He was more tactful, but that's what I heard.
  5. Camera with film to a digital camera.

Each change requires learning.

This morning, I called and clarified that "mobile" refers to a smart phone or tablet.

"Please use clear language on your website," I asked. Doubt that will happen. Company websites are becoming more confusing and opaque.

LiterateHiker 9 July 23

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The history of humanity is the history of technology.


Not really. Consider all the decades before electricity was discovered.

@LiterateHiker making fire is technology. Cooking is technology, so is hunting as soon as it utilizes tools. Language is a technology, although speech probably isn't. Music is technology, so is painting and sculpture. All art except dancing and singing are applications of technology.


If we live long enough AI will take most of these issues away. Until it takes over and we all become economically useless.


When mobile phones first appeared they were the size of a brick and over the years they became smaller until a few years ago they reached their smallest size and then they started growing again.
I recently had to ditch my 3g Blackberry for a 4G smartphone and it is almost three times the size. far too big to fit in any pocket. I suppose because people use them as computers as well as phones they want a bigger screen


My daughter insisted I get a smart phone for the GPS. I have a lousy sense of direction. I got the smallest, lightest one I could find. I don't want to add weight to my purse.

Women's clothes often don't have pockets or are useless decorations. In my hiking pants, I enlarged a side pocket to fit the smart phone. The damn phone swings and bangs my thigh with every step.

I often don't carry the smart phone. Everyone else does.

@LiterateHiker Know how you feel. I recall driving long distances in old unreliable cars long before mobile phones existed and it never botherd me. Now even on a short journey in my modern reliable car I hate going out without my phone.
Regarding pockets I don't think youngsters these days need them as the phones never leave their hands.


Mobile phone is the word used for over 20 years now. When people in the us called it a cellular phone, it was called mobile everywhere else.

Yes it's hard to keep up.


I don't have any issues yet but a lot of my interests and of my job is tech involved.


I usually see the term "mobile" is an adjective such as in "mobile device" meaning either a mobile phone or computer tablet, like an iPad. Where I come from we might say mobile phone, not shortened to just "mobile" like in other countries.

When it's used as a noun like that, written not spoken, such in the directions you're quoting, sounds they're instructing you to install security on a baby's crib, into the mobile that hangs above with various shapes circling around to music!

Yes, words take on a different meaning when they are shortened to nicknames. Here, we might say "what's your cell?" meaning what is your mobile phone number, though 50 years ago it might have meant what number is your jail cell, haha!

See also Mobile in Alabama: [] 😉


A language changes to meet the changing needs of its speakers. The word "vagina" seems to have made its first appearance in its modern meaning in 1612: [] Changes in technology requires that either new words are coined or existing words are re-purposed.


I've lived thru all the same changes and the one thing it's taught me me is that I've gotten really old.

I also think there's a point when all tech reaches its best iteration. The problem is, it doesn't stop there, it just keeps advancing for better or worse. Personally, I think the best version of the phone was the flip phone. I loved my flip phone while I effing hate mysmart phone. I use, maybe, 20% of what it does and it tracks me. I loved DVDs. They were a huge improvement over video cassettes and you could still own a piece of physical media. With streaming, you own nothing and they track you. i-pods were great. All the music you could want on a credit card sized device. Now they're obsolete. It's like owning a Walkman.

I'm tired of technology.


My 2008 HP Photosmart C4180 printer/scanner/copier is a dependable workhorse.

But the cost of the HP printer ink cartridges keeps going up.

"HP is making your ink cartridges more expensive to force you to buy a new printer," the sales clerk at Office Depot explained.

Luckily, I got the same HP ink cartridges on Amazon at half the cost.


I've made a lot of those changes and they do require a little learning. Phones were party lines when I was a kid. Many people did not have them. Movies were seen at an indoor or drive in theater. I stream video with reliable methods that are already obsolete and I have cell phones but prefer to not talk on them. TV and movies that interest me today have devices 20 to 25 years old or more. The latest idea shows and language do not interest me in the least. Same with latest hip talk and ideas. My comfort zone is in what I know and understand. I have refurbed a few computers myself but would not know much about our newest ones today.


I am the opposite. I bought an office computer on 1981 and taught myself to write code for it. By 1987 I was building all my own machines.

Petter Level 9 July 23, 2022


That's amazing!

Way to rock! I had some rather unusual friends when I was young so in the 70's we worked on building (look up parts and design and build the motherboards, video boards, power supply etc from scratch. The BIG (weighted about 30 pounds) project was a z80 based computer. Lots of experimenting on how to use silk screens to etch the boards. Never finished the project. Was completely obsolete by the time the boards were populated. Wound up with a lot of different already built computers. Back then about the only things we built (and sold) were printer switches. Parallel switches triggered by a single spdt switch and power supply. In the 80's built my first home-made computer. It was an IBM XT clone based on the old 8088 running MS DOS Built lots of computers sense but mostly just pick up old computers, upgrade them and put Linux on them then give them away. The new Ubuntu 22.04 LTS is really nice. Just installed it on an old Apple Imac with 4gb ram, replaced the old hd with a SSD and the machine is now very usable. I was never good at coding - - little more then a script monkey. Wrote a few games in Basic and a database in Fortran years ago then became a script monkey with FileMaker Pro. (Nice relational database) This made learning the to use Fusion in DaVinci Resolve a lot more intuitive as the graphical interface in building relationships looks and feels a lot like Fusion. Built and managed a few networks based on Open Directory servers and built a few websites. Nothing fancy. I never had the strength to write code for any of these projects. Did get my hands a a little dirty when building Linux based DNS servers and managing switches but that was just downloading and installing then configuring settings. I am not a programmer.


Oh hell, yeah. When 3G was "disappeared" earlier this year, it made my while-on-the-road-only flip phone obsolete and forced me to get a smartphone as a replacement. It took me days to set it up, including a trip to the public library for the resident (very young) techie to assist with it. I hear about stuff like Tiktok and Instagram and have no idea WTF it is and have no desire to find out. It pisses me off that I need a smartphone to buy concert tickets and look at brewery tap menus. Yeah, I'm an old curmudgeon, and I'm proud of it. LOL

I have children in their 30's, they call me a dinosaur. I'm fine with that.

@HippieChick58 I get "Luddite," and that works for me!

@HippieChick58, @DharmaBum50

"Claire, will you please help me get off Google Drive?" I begged my 32-year-old daughter. "Google downloaded all of my photos and documents. Now they're charging me a monthly storage fee."

"Sure," Claire replied. She works with two computers on her desk.

In 10 minutes, she deleted all of my photos and documents on Google Cloud, Drive or whatever the hell it's called. What a relief.

I got her to delete Google Cloud/Drive off my computer, too.


My daughter forced me to get a smart phone for the GPS. With a lousy sense of direction, I got lost driving to her house for years.

@LiterateHiker My son in law chided me for my "overuse" of google maps. Sorry dude, if it is in part of town I don't usually go to, I'm pulling out my cell phone, (and once I upgrade my car it will be on my dash.) Google maps not only shows me the way, it shows me the traffic, and it shows me my time to beat. Not that I need the encouragement, but I like getting to where I'm going as quickly as possible.


Me, too. Love Google Maps GPS.

Claire got tired of coming to find me and leading me to her home.

@LiterateHiker Well, yeah, I can see that. I have an excellent sense of direction, though, plus I can internalize maps (you know, those old-fashioned paper GPS's). Not having to use the digital GPS has freaked various people out over the years when I actually get us to our destination with no trouble at all.

@DharmaBum50 For decades I kept an up to date Rand McNally Road Atlas in all our cars. Then at one point I was printing directions to someplace new with MapQuest. Then I went to San Antonio, TX, and my flight arrived about midnight. I got my rental and proceeded to try to find my way to my hotel in pitch darkness at 65 MPH or more. That is when I decided I would get a GPS. I still have two old GPS units in my glove box. They haven't been pulled out in years!


Forgot about Map Quest. I bought a worthless GPS unit.

While hiking, I carry a paper map and compass. Often there is no cell phone connection in the mountains.

Driving over the mountains, there are dead zones in certain areas. Narrow canyons, etc.

@LiterateHiker I'm surprised as a hiker you have a poor sense of direction. I still have my paper maps in my car. I have been up and down the east coast, west coast and cross country on the northen route all with paper maps. I will search a map on line if I have to go somewhere (like a doctor's appointment) if I have not been to that area b4. Mostly I am tech challenged tho.


I never hike alone. What if I get lost or hurt?

There's nobody to provide first aid or go for help.

@DharmaBum50 I had to get a new phone a few months ago, and because of the Pandemic, I ordered it online and had to handle the transition myself. I use my phone for WFH, all my calls come in to my computer and then to my cell phone. So call quality is imperative. I had to call my cell provider because my calls were horrible. When the caller can't understand what you're saying it's a huge problem. I had to call the cell provider at least twice, and finally I got it to where it is good call quality again. When it isn't I have to restart my phone. It's annoying, but workable. I'm kinda proud of myself that I didn't have to go into the store to get it figured out. And if it is an option next time, I will go to the store and let them handle it, life is too short for that heartburn.

@LiterateHiker I was aware you never hike alone because of all the reasons you mentioned. Smart move, I've read too many back country stories about people who went out alone that ended poorly.

@HippieChick58 Sorry, you are not a dinosaur. Ask them to say something in morse code.

@HippieChick58 I have children in their early 50's that know I'm a dinosaur but we like some of the same music. 🙂

@LiterateHiker Just because the photos are removed from the Google drive and you no longer have that app, does not necessarily mean you will no longer be charged for the drive space (PLAN) service? I don't know. May be worth checking terms? []


Google has not taken any money out of my checking account since Claire cancelled Google Drive/Cloud for me.

I carefully look through my checking and savings accounts several times a month.


A Mobile is what Americans call a "cell phone".

Petter Level 9 July 23, 2022

All the time, however I do not despair, after all most young people have to clue how to use an old telephone.


I thought I was the only one. Relieved.


I still buy vinyl records. You can't get any better way to listen to music than the old records. I do get along with technology but it's advancing too fast, I simply can't keep up.

There is a warmth to the old vinyl records.


Mobile is cell phone in the uk. I used to feel I could keep up with technology but this whole crypto thing and NFT baffles me.

antman Level 7 July 23, 2022

I don't know much about crypto currency, but I do know about scams. Crypto is too darn close to a scam for me to want to invest anything in it. I don't have cash to spare, and it just doesn't seem like a safe investment.

@HippieChick58 there’s just too many. Most will fail. It’s a bit like Tulips from Amsterdam at the moment.

Trading commodities or stocks helps understand those "invisible" NFTs and crypto. Probably just as iffy an investment as those credit default swaps.

@HippieChick58 Invest in crypto and you will not have cash to spare.

@DenoPenno I don't have cash to spare now, too close to retirement. My money is in safe investments, although lately they haven't been doing well either. I won't be putting money into anything I don't understand.


I will never give up my turntable and vinyl records! That turntable is over four decades old and only needs a new cartridge and/or stylus occasionally. The components (including EQ) and speakers sound superior to anything else.

MizJ Level 8 July 23, 2022

Agreed. Some of the old analogue equipment has a sound that is warmer then the new equipment.

@NoMagicCookie The music that is recorded digitally is different as well. They use a technology known as compression. Compression is how they make TV commercials seem so loud, when used for TV it can make the recording absolutely full volume. I stream a lot of music and can tell the difference in the original analog and the remastered digitally versions. A few of my friends have full recording studios, amazing what can be done.

@NoMagicCookie Some guitar players I know have old tube amps, difficult to recreate that sound any other way.

@MizJ The sound of MOSFET amps get close but not close enough. Tubes are still around. Some of the best microphones have tube amplifier circuits in the microphone capsule. The hard core audio enthusiasts use tube pre-amps. The only working? thing I have left that is tube amplifier based is a Hammarlund HQ-100c Haven't fired it up in decades. Not sure if the capacitors are still good. I have on old reel-to-reel tape deck but the capacitors have failed.



Thank you.


To one degree or another, all the effing time. 🤣


Thank you. I don't feel so alone. Most of the time I feel like a doofus.

@LiterateHiker Well I might be a doofus with or without it, but this technology increases the probability exponentially. 😂


Since my cell phone coverage now comes from T-Mobile, and I have to keep up with modern trends to keep my job, I know that mobile usually refers to a smart phone/cell phone/tablet. However, I talk to lots of senior folks, and when I need to ask about their phone I'd never call it a "mobile". You're not alone. I am looking forward to the day I can stop keeping up with the latest. I have had to learn about Zelle, and I hate it. Zelle is a money transfer app, like Venmo or CashApp. I prefer cash, check, or charge.


Bastardization of the English language bothers me.

@LiterateHiker I agree, BUT language is a living tool, and it has and will continue to evolve over time.

@LiterateHiker In many countries cell phones are referred to as mobiles. Just as we refused to switch to the Metric System we have to have different words.

@MizJ The rest of the world they are mobiles.

@Jolanta Precisely. Only the USA uses "cell phone". However, in Germany they are a "handy" and in Italy a " telefonino".

@Jolanta The rest of the world uses metric and for good reason. If I need a socket one size smaller I jump down one mm (millimeter) instead of going from eighths to sixteenths to WTF. Most people can't tell how many feet are in a quarter of a mile, fractions of a kilometer are a piece of cake. As a bonus it got to almost 37C here today which sounds far less oppressive than 98F.

@MizJ One of my kids is moving to Amsterdam, and that is just one of the changes she will be facing. I plan to make a visit some time after she moves, and of course I'm going to check out fabric stores. So I'm learning the language and refamiliarizing myself with the metric system. Yes, the US needs to join the rest of the world on that platform.

@HippieChick58 A meter is 39.3 inches, that is how fabric is sold 🙂 Not sure is the width of quilting cottons differs but it varies a bit here anyway.

@MizJ When this child was 6 months old we moved to Germany, her dad was active duty Army. So I got used to shopping in metrics while offbase, and I do remember that the meter is longer than the yardstick. This child is now in her late 30s, so it has been a long while since I've had to do that math. Because I'm a quilter and can always use left over fabrics in different projects I usually buy generously when I do buy, the more the merrier! I don't expect to be driving, though I did drive while I was in Germany. I just don't want to have to learn a new set of traffic signs or have that responsibility. I want to enjoy the scenery and the kiddoes.

@HippieChick58 In Amsterdam be careful when walking, there are a gazillion people on bicycles and you don't hear them. The road signs are more pictures than words, most are obvious and some are similar to ours in shape. A kilometer is .6 miles so if an exit is 800 m (meters) away it is about a half mile. You can get an international drivers license at AAA, I highly suggest having one if you might drive at all and some countries require it for renting a car. Bon voyage!

@MizJ Thank you!! I don't plan to go for some time yet, but I will keep that in mind. I drove in Germany in the 80s, and I do remember the signage being really different. And Klicks vs Miles, we did many volksmarches. I was in Germany before I got married as well, in fact I married the children's father in Denmark while we were stationed in Germany the first time. I learned to drive a 2.5 Ton truck in Germany while I was active duty. We also took an American car to England, which I do not recommend ever.

@HippieChick58 I drove in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, New Zealand. All were easy except NZ, that scared the crap out of me, driving on the left messes with my mind, especially making right turns.

Driving that deuce and a half must have been fun. A friend let me drive his dump truck once not knowing that I could drive a clutch. The look on his face when the truck moved was priceless. My current car has 3 pedals, the one on the left is also a Millenial anti-theft device.

@MizJ Both my cars are manual transmission. Only way to drive in my book. Sadly, Honda no longer offers manual transmission in their new cars so I need to find another old used Honda with a stick shift. My main driving car has over 250,000 miles on it and I've had to get my hands greasy twice in the last two weeks to keep it running.

@NoMagicCookie My CRX had about the same mileage when I sold it about a decade ago, third gear was getting wonky. I have a Subaru, the only car I could find that had 3 pedals.

@MizJ The fellow soldier who was teaching me to drive stick, was a redhead whose first name was Cecil. I don't think he ever recovered 🙂 Germany is very hilly, and the transmission in those trucks was pretty stiff. But we got it done, and got back to the base safely. After I got out of the Army and rejoined my husband, he was stationed in Louisiana, and we had a Datsun with a manual transmission. Driving that in Louisiana was fun, no hills. Then 20 years later one of our girls got a manual transmission, and I taught her to drive that in Omaha we found some level areas. Then she took it to the University of Kansas which has lotsa hills. She turned into a really good driver, and even taught several of her friends how to drive stick in that car. I would never drive a car in England now. I have watched videos of dash cams in England, and just watching stresses me out. If I go to England someone else will have to drive.

@HippieChick58 Did the deuce and a half have a jake brake aka engine braking? I feel safer on hills with a stick and it's a lot more fun. My brakes failed once and I drove to the garage; another time I had a tire blowout at about 90 mph and downshifted. When I got to the shoulder my mother asked me why we were stopped.

I need a road trip to somewhere with roads with hills and curves.

@MizJ I don't remember if there was a jake brake. It's been too long. Hills and curves, hit the Blue Ridge Parkway, beautiful, and hilly and curvy as all hell.

@MizJ I used to live in Sweden when 3 September 1967 they changed from driving on the left side to the right side. Can you imagine it happening in the US?

@MizJ Those Jake Brakes are loud. Many years ago in the blackness of a snowy winter's night I was driving on an unfamiliar road by a lake. Suddenly a T in the road appeared and the lake was right in front of me. I hit the brakes hard and one of the break lines broke. If I didn't have a manual transmission I would have wound have wound up in the lake and driving home would have been much more difficult. Those were some miserable times. I borrowed the unheated garage of a friend to fix my breaks and it was -23F when I started fixing the break system. Thought it was a blown seal in the break piston as the drum was covered in oil but found (after replacing the piston and pads (worn and covered in oil) a ruptured brake line. Two miserable long cold walks to the parts store.

@Jolanta I was stationed in Okinawa in 1979. They changed from driving on the right like Americans do to driving on the left like mainland Japan. That was a weird time. They spent months fixing cars so the headlights were aligned properly, and then they closed all the roads overnight to switch signs. The first accidents were busses, but they had several hundred cops from mainland Japan to help with the transition. It went fairly well as far as I remember. But they prepped for it very efficiently.

@MizJ Then, to confuse things further, there's the AF and BA sizing systems!
Metric is decidedly simpler.

@HippieChick58 It is stunning there and the Appalachians have some other shorter drives that are also worthwhile such as the Kankamangus Highway in New Hampshire.

The original Summer 2022 plan was to go to Eastern Canada. At the top Nova Scotia is the Cabot Trail, one of the world's top drives. Cliffs that drop down to the sea with whales close enough to see from the top, no guard rails! Be sure to watch for moose. The photo is from there.

@HippieChick58 That would never work here, imagine the panic and confusion.

@HippieChick58 So they did in Sweden, months and months of preparation and educating the public. Hardly any accidents and nobody died as far as I remember.

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