Thursday, January 31, 2013

I Get By With Some Hints From My Friends

I have a friend who is a Geeky senior citizen like me. We are neighbors in a retirement community, and we both love everything Apple: Mac, iPad, iPhone, you name it (I say that in case Apple comes out with another new product today or tomorrow). We have only known each other about a year. We met through the Sunflower Computer Club and now serve on the SFCC Board together. We teach iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch Classes at the Village Center. We get together weekly to discuss our presentation, or do other Geeky stuff. We learn so much from one another. So, here is something I learned from her:

If you are backing up your iPad or iPhone to iCloud, it is a good idea once in awhile to do this:

Connect your iPad in to your computer
Open iTunes
Find your iPad in the sidebar under Devices
Click on your iPad and open it in iTunes.
Choose "Automatically Back up .... this Computer"
Click "Apply" on the right lower corner of the window.

When the operation is complete,  You can then click the box that says "Automatically Backup...iCloud" Go back to your iPad (sidebar under Devices) and choose the eject symbol. You will now have a full backup on your computer.

This is also handy if you are upgrading to a newer iPad, or you are buying an additional device, like an iPad Mini.


Well, it has been colder than normal this winter in Arizona, but really I am talking about when your iPad freezes. It happens to me once in awhile with the Safari browser, sometimes with mail but more often with the game Words with Friends. 
So here is what to do if your App is stuck, or if you are Freezing in Arizona! (or anywhere else for that matter).

1.Leave the App by pressing the home screen to go back to the main menu. Open the multitask bar at the bottom of your home screen by swiping up on the screen with four fingers, or pressing the home button two times. Press and hold the offending app until it “jiggles”. Close that app by pressing the minus (-)
If that doesn’t work……
2. Press the power button until the slide to power off comes up (but dont power off). Press the home button for a few seconds for a soft reset of that app.
If that doesn’t work……
3. Restarting your device
Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button for a few seconds until the red "slide to power off" slider appears, and then slide the slider.
Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until the Apple logo appears.
If that doesn’t work……….
4. Do a hard reset, just hold the "Sleep/Wake" button on the upper right of your iPad along with the circular "Home" button on the lower middle part of the device's bezel. After 10 seconds, you should see the Apple logo. That's the sign that you've successfully pulled off a hard reset with your iPad.
If you still have problems…..
5. Restore your iPad by connecting with USB cable to your computer (iTunes).

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Is it Too Late for us Old Folks?

My neighbor, across the street,  has never really used a computer to speak of. Somehow in his long and interesting life, he failed to jump on the bandwagon with those of us who are obsessed with all things related to technology.
So, now he thinks maybe he wants to do email. Get a computer. Maybe an iPad?
That was last year.
He joins the Sunflower Computer Club. Someone helps him set up an email address on Gmail, using the Village Center Lab. He comes to classes on How to Buy a Computer. He listens as we share information about iPads. He tells me, "I think maybe I want to buy an iPad". I don't really know him that well, so I think, "Sure". I don't know at that point HE HAS NEVER USED A COMPUTER! So we talk and talk and talk and discuss and discuss and discuss and then.......... last May or so, he does it! He buys an iPad from the Apple Store. I offer to help him. Anytime.
He starts coming over. One day my son is at our house, and we are not there. This guy rings the bell. Eric answers. The guy moves past Eric and walks in. Eric says, "Uh. May I help you?" "I'm here for my lesson." He walks to the table, sits down and waits the few minutes it takes me to get home.
We now have had many sessions, and I learn something new each time about older adult learners. I can't just tell Stanley. I need to let him do it. Over and over sometimes. He forgets. He asks questions. I reteach. He forgets. I even forget. As one elderly resident here says, "Just when we get all this fun technology offered to us, we are losing our memory and can't remember how it works!"
So, Stanley goes to the Wheeler Taft Abbott, Sr., Library in Marana, AZ and learns how to download books to his iPad using Overdrive. He comes over, and he shows me what he has learned. Seniors do well if they can teach it to someone else. And we both learn a little more.
Which is important at our age!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Not an Expert...Just a Fellow Traveler

Going Paperless? Really? Well. Last night we were heading out to dinner and Denny says: "Got the directions?" I say, "Sure. Right here. next to the computer. Or maybe in my purse............. hmm. Or maybe in that bag I was carrying my iPad in Sunday. It was a little slip of white paper."  We headed out using MapQuest on my iPhone. No slip of paper. Took us way longer than we thought. We arrived late. Denny says to George, "Do you ALWAYS come over all those speed humps?" "No! I told you not to come that way!" I had to admit that 1. I am not a good listener to directions or anything else. 2. I lost the slip of paper.
On the way home, I said to Denny, "I am doing this presentation Monday, Going Paperless with your iPad, and I cannot even manage one little slip of paper!"
Well, this morning I found George's note. Next to the computer. With a whole pile of other stuff. I'm cleaning it up. Right now.
See you Monday. December 21, 3:00 pm at the Coronado Room. Sunflower Village Center. Using my iPad to Go Paperless. I'm learning right along with you. Not an expert. Just a fellow traveler.

Monday, January 7, 2013

I live in a retirement community in Marana, Arizona. About a year ago, the Education Coordinator for Sunflower Computer Club sent out a request asking for people to teach classes. I have spent nearly 30 years with Apple products, and I just love my iPad and iPhone as well. Actually, in our home we have two iPhones, two iPads, and a Macbook Pro.  I began about a year ago to teach iPad classes for the Sunflower Computer Club. After teaching a class, I come home and say to my husband, "This is my favorite thing I have ever done!" There is a great feeling of satisfaction to help older retired people use technology to enhance their life. In example, Mae showed up at one of my earliest classes. I always start out by saying, "What do you want to do with your iPad?" So Mae raises her hand and quietly says,

"Well, I will be 90 in December, and my sons [four of them] sent me an iPad. They want me to send them an email every day. In the email they want me to tell them two things: 'I got up, and I am ok!' " What Mae wanted to know was... "How can I send just one email and it goes to each of them?" I just loved it! What great sons she has!

Increasingly, the seniors in our neighborhood are finding satisfaction and enjoyment in technology. Many of them are long time users of computers and some have never touched a computer. For each of them, we are moving forward together to make technology a part of our lives.