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I'm Not a Geek

Computer and I
Amiga 600HD animation
I'm not a Geek. At least I don't consider myself to be one. I know that would raise an eyebrow with a lot of people who know me and surely they'd protest...

"But you know so much about computers and technology and people are always asking you to help solve their computer problems."

It's true, I do know a lot about computers and technology - and people do ask me to help solve their computer problems (which has started to extend into digital camera and mobile phone problems too).

However a lot of what I know is because it's stuff I have to know in order to do the work I do. Much of my creative time is spent in front of a computer because computers have made massive in roads into the creative arts.

In the past, as a writer, I may have used a pen and notebook a lot more. These days, if I want to write something longer than a shopping list, I'll go straight to my computer.

Although I still draw, sketch and paint with my own two hands using traditional tools, more and more of my art is becoming digital. Whether it be photographing my paintings so I can sell prints, right up to drawing and painting with my Wacom digital graphics tablet... not to mention animation, which I create entirely on a computer thus far.

When I started making videos I filmed with Super8 VHS camera (I think that's the  format? Video tape anyhow) and used to edit it all together with two linked VHS video recorders along with a stereo player hacked into the audio line so I could add a music track mixed with a live or taped mic recording of the narration. All of this because I couldn't afford a proper editing desk. Now all of that can be done with a digital video camera and my laptop computer.

If you want to keep all this technology running and have all your devices linked to home network so you can share a wireless internet connection then you need to learn about how all this works. How to set it up. How to install things. Otherwise you'll spend a lot of time sitting around paying someone too much money to fix something that you probably could have fixed in a few minutes if you bothered to learn how your technology works.

Hence I know a lot about Geeky stuff like computers, cameras, mobile phones etc. but only the technology I actually use.

My partner has an iPad and an iPhone neither of which I use very much at all. I kind of know my way around them - since they're Apple products and designed to be easy to use by almost anyone - but I'm not as confident with them as I am with my own phone, Android tablet and computer.

I tend to think of Geeks as people who are impressed by the best technology you can buy. They walk into a computer store and look dreamily at that high end laptop that they're going to buy one day. They look at your sucky laptop computer because it's nowhere near as good as theirs and they're quite happy to tell you why. You know what I mean right?

As far as I go, I buy the best technology I can afford then use it. I don't concern myself with what I can't afford or what I'd like to own if money allowed. I walk into a computer store and head straight for whatever it is I plan to buy. I don't stop to admire all the display computers.

I own a Toshiba Laptop that I bought new for under $500 on ebay. It's the first new laptop I've ever owned and was the best I could afford. It may not be as streamlined, powerful or flashy as a Macbook Air that costs two to three times more but it gets the job done. That's all that matters.

I've also got a number of older computers that date back to the beginning of the century (which makes them sound really ancient but that's only 12 years ago) that I try to keep running and find a use for because nobody would actually buy any of them.

It's actually the number of computers I own that makes me seem more of a Geek but really, I'm sure many people have a trail of old computers in the shed or wherever. It's not that Geeky.

When I was young I may have taught myself computer programming and spent a couple of years in College learning to business program. That doesn't make me a Geek... anymore... all that stuff is outdated. Anyway, I failed my computer programming course because I wanted to write games and there was no such course for game programmers back then. I can't really program now other than make minor hacks to java script code - even then it's all trial and error.

As usual I'm rambling now, so I'll end it here. I'm not a Geek really. However I know what you're probably thinking...

"Yes you are."

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