My young son recently saw me looking at an excel spreadsheet and asked what it was. “Well..It’s a picture to show numbers in an easy way. So you can really quickly see which is the biggest number.” He nodded his head to say that my reply made sense and then he trotted off to get on with more important work: waging a war between Thomas the Tank Engine and a dinosaur.
I was quite pleased with my on-the-spot explanation, but also that he asked the question, because it contrasted with my own childhood and early education where I learned very little about computing in general. In fact, at my first job, I often caused much hilarity in the office by asking ridiculous questions. One example I clearly recall was when I put a customer on hold to ask, “I really don’t know why this customer is upset that they can’t type an umlaut on screen. I thought that an umlaut was something you made with eggs?!”
(Although if you’ve never had to deal with European language support you might not know what I mean either, but you can easily find out…)
When my son starts his first job, hopefully he won’t be such a source of amusement. If he doesn’t know something he can of course embark on some “stealth learning.” Everything he ever wanted to know about, and plenty of things he didn’t need to ever know, will be revealed to him within just a few seconds of silent searching on the internet. This way he’ll be able to find out answers to his rookie questions without ever needing to communicate that he didn’t know something. Although part of me is pleased that he will be spared the public ridicule, perhaps the lack of need for interaction also makes me feel a bit sad.
The LANDESK community helps users of our products to embark on some “stealth learning” from reading through posts and articles by the community members. People are finding answers and assistance all the time but you wouldn’t always know it: they often don’t make a sound. We have thousands of visitors to the site each month but a very small percentage actually participate. People often tell me that “I use it all the time, but I don’t post.”
Please do carry on and use the technical resource of the community: that’s what it’s for! However, we would also very much like to hear from you if you learn something, think that you can help someone, or if you have a question that you can’t find the answer to. We have many friendly contributors who would be happy to hear from you.
Check out our Site Help area if you want to understand more about how to participate in the LANDESK community forums. I look forward to hearing from you!