Back to School
turbotodd 100000388Y Comments (2) Visits (2431)
In the midst of my undergraduate experience (sometime in the late 1980s), I remember PCs and computing becoming an integral part of my collegiate experience.
When I first started back to college in 1987 (I had first began in 1984 before decided after a couple of years some Kerouacian travel was in order), I used a Kaypro luggable computer, compete with the C/PM operating system and two diskette drives, one for the OS, the other for WordStar files I needed to save (remember WordStar???)
Later, I upgraded to a Compaq luggable, which only weighed about 30 pounds, and which had a lightning fast 2400 baud modem. Remember 2400 baud modems???
I remember the first time I communicated with someone over the network (in this case, via CompuServe's CB system).
I chatted with somebody in Sweden, directly from my Animal House-ish fraternity.
I had no idea where Sweden was at the time, but it sure was cool to talk with someone from there.
The point being, I thought I was on the bleeding edge of technology.
Flash forward to the Web feature our ibm.com team just published, one that talks about "social networking" on campus, and how students are now experiencing education through virtual, immersive 3D environments.
Why I remember when I had to walk five miles through the snow...yeah yeah, grandpa, we know, we know, you didn't have 3D immersive environments and you had to send files the old-fashioned way, via FTP!
Call them Generational "D" (for Digital), call them spoiled, call them what you will, just don't call them disconnected, because they're anything but.
They may not be throwing any kegs off the roof, but if they are, you can rest assured they're filming it for posterity's sake and posting it on YouTube or Facebook.
They are wired and mired in the digital experience, and as the Generation D feature points out, they just assume they'll have 24/7 access to the Intertubes when they hit campus, allowing them to do everything from registering for classes online to listening to podcast class materials.
Almost kinda makes me want to go back to school.