HELLO? CAN YOU HEAR ME? CAN YOU SEE ME?
This is how we first greet each other during these days of social distancing, in meetings that all start with ten minutes devoted to getting the cameras and speakers on our computers or smartphones to work properly. The ability to successfully use technology has become key as we shelter in place. While it is far from perfect, technology has become one of the most important ways we have of staying connected.
Iris Nicholson reflects on adapting to on-line meetings: Villagers Jerry Sabo and Doug Avery have turned into superheroes for many of us new to these tools. Doug coached me on my first Google Meet session. I have now guided several friends and have even organized a Sunday party-time for five friends where we tell terrible jokes and check-in with each other. As much as I resist the computer, I figure I’m getting ready for the time I want to see my doctor but don’t want to go to the office.
Jerry Sabo leads the GNV Take Charge of Your Tech special interest group. He observes, “How important it is to see and hear our friends! Our personal devices are key to making those connections.” Jerry's friend John, widowed after taking care of his wife through cancer for years, called Jerry and said, “You have to walk me through setting up a Zoom meeting, I have a date!” GNV member Ed Frakes is strictly quarantined at home. Jerry set-up Ed’s desktop computer with a camera and now Ed happily participates in Zoom meetings everyday. Jerry has helped a recently widowed neighbor when she did not know the passwords to unlock her husband’s computer to access files needed to settle their affairs.