Lost in Geeklandia Release Day
I’m thrilled to announce that Lost in Geeklandia releases today! The heroine, Charlie Forrester, is a data scientist, more comfortable with technology than people, and while I was writing the story, I couldn’t help but think about my own conversion from computer-phobic to computer-dependent – and what a long, strange trip it’s been.
When I was a junior in high school, our algebra class had a computer in it. A. Computer. As in one and only one. I don’t remember a lot about it – it was the approximate size of a dishwasher, had no monitor, and was programmed via punch cards – but I remember I was completely intimidated by it and did my best to avoid having anything to do with it.
For the next ten years, I rarely interacted with anything more advanced than an IBM Selectric typewriter, but then, in graduate school, I learned to use version 1.0 of the Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheet program on a Compaq “portable” computer (weight just under thirty pounds). The screen was barely larger than one of my dad’s oscilloscopes, but compared to bookkeeping by hand on green ledger paper? Heaven.
We needn’t dwell on the next thirty years, through more than half a dozen versions of Windows and two sizes of floppy disk drives, as machines shrunk in size and grew in power, but here I am now, with my Macbook Air and iPhone, a total digital convert.
Regardless of the fact that I’m an information technology professional in my day job, computers will always be a second language to me. On the other hand, my daughter, like Charlie, is a digital native. I watch her thumbs fly over iPhone screen faster than I can touch-type on my laptop keyboard. If a question comes up about anything – what restaurant has the best tapas, which movies a particular actor appeared in, where she can find her next workout class – she has the answer almost before the question is asked.
Although she might not realize it – or at least not express it in so many words – her life is totally data-driven.
Charlie would be so proud. (And so am I.)