For all my friends that continue to tell me, “I’m just not good with technology!”
I am not an expert on computers or electronics, but without a doubt, I am a child of the information age. I grew up using computers and the internet, and I have sailed fluently through the explosion of new technology in the last 20 years. Still, I am no stranger to the difficult learning process adults face as they try to enter the electronic world for the first time. In many ways, technology is like a foreign language. It’s easiest to learn and gain fluency when you face it at an early age. However, trying to learn a new language as an adult is extremely challenging.
If you are like my mom, putting the word “electronic” in front of ANY common word is a bad idea and cannot be trusted. Even so, you realize that cautiously approaching the subject is probably worthwhile as you adjust yourself to the digital world around you. For my mom, learning to use electronics has been a big and challenging adventure, but it has opened her eyes to the beauty of broad and accessible information at her finger tips. Not to mention, as I shared in her adoption story, her ability to use the internet has been life changing!
Recognizing that many of my readers are fairly new to the electronic world, just like my mom, I am aware of the need to provide a simple explanation of electronic concepts from time to time. I have experienced many long phone calls with my mother where I have been her technical support as she tried to figure out her digital camera, Facebook profile changes, and even text messaging attempts. I understand that the word “download” means absolutely nothing to her, and that choosing between the right-click and left-click is always a toss-up. With this in mind, it’s time we all have a little heart-to-heart about electronic books, or ebooks as they are commonly called. For all of you who type with one finger and unplug your computer when things get confusing: This one’s for you!
Some simple reasons that even YOU should give ebooks a chance:
- If you are reading this blog, you most likely have everything you need to read an ebook! You don’t need to have a special electronic reader like a Kindle or a Nook to read most ebooks. A working computer and an internet connection will do just fine.
- The process of purchasing, downloading, and opening an ebook to read is not complicated. If you have a computer savvy child over the age of twelve or into adulthood, I can almost guarantee they will be able to help you through any technical questions you may have.
- Once you are successfully at the website where you plan to buy your ebook (such as an author’s site, Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com), there will be clear steps throughout the purchasing process. Simply read through each step, and follow their directions. I promise they will not steer you wrong.
- You can feel safe purchasing items online, especially through trusted shopping sites like Amazon. There are many articles available with tips to increase safety for your online purchases. This one, from eHow, is especially reassuring.
- Ebooks are often significantly less expensive than printed books, and there are many [excellent Christian books] available for free!
- Many ebooks are under 100 pages and can be read quickly and easily, making them great resources for busy schedules.
These are just a handful of basic facts that I know my mom would want to hear before she considered buying an ebook for herself. If you read through this list and feel inspired to take a step further into the electronic reading world, I encourage you to read Ten Things You Wish You Knew About Ebooks by my friend Elisa! Here you’ll find some specific answers to your ebook questions!