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Fatherhood and Computers (A Brief Introduction)

Sarah Conway

I’m a citizen of the internet and as such I frequently come across interesting things online. I share these things with people who would also find them interesting. Most often my students are the people who would find my internet perusals valuable and they are subjected to the best of what I find. Oftentimes, since I’m currently teaching a film class, this involves innovative videos created by random individuals that I can use to demonstrate a particular concept in an entertaining way.

My other hobby (addiction) is technology blogs. I’ve recently become a user and advocate of open source software. While doing my daily perusing of the internet, in the category of open source, I found something directly related to fatherhood. It was also quite funny and try as I might I couldn’t resist sharing it with the readers here.

The web page I found explains how a father put an old computer to use in an extremely cute and nerdy way. Luckily it also has a video demonstration. I won’t ruin the surprise for you so open this up in another page and watch the video and then come back to Families.com. Click here for the link.

SPOILER: If you were hesitant to click on the link it is of a father who wrote a small program to open and close the cd tray of his computer endlessly. He attaches one end of a string to the tray and the other to his child’s car seat. The motion rocks the baby to sleep, “hands free.”

It is rare that my enthusiasm for open source directly relates to being a father. On reflection, however, much open source software is able to give older computers new life. Open source also provides a large number of tools available for low cost or (frequently) no cost at all. Part of my interest in these tools, I realize, stems from a shortage of money and a desire to still indulge in my technology habit.

As a consequence of this habit I’ve saved a great deal of money on computers and software. I’ve also had an entirely different world opened up to me. I didn’t know there were so many great tools both for me and for children. I’m old enough to have not grown up with a computer in the house. My son will not grow up with that reality. I’m very happy to have found a number of tools that provide a phenomenal educational computer experience at a low cost. It makes the future feel more secure.

Thanks for letting me share. Perhaps one day I’ll come up with an equally nerdy idea. Perhaps I’ll even start using this one! Do you have any technology tips for raising children? If so, put them in the comments!