Welcome everyone to 2020!
From the Chair:
I hope you all had lots of relaxing time over the summer break. By the time you read this, Term 1 will be in full swing at SeniorNet with several courses and workshops already completed. Our Open Days were very successful and we have a number of new members joining us this year – many of whom we’ve already seen at the Learning Centre. Our Tutors are also all rested and rejuvenated, keen to share their IT knowledge with you in the friendly, low-stress learning environment we call SeniorNet Kapiti.
I would also like to take a moment to
acknowledge the enormous contribution our recently retired (National) Executive Officer, Grant Sidaway has made to SeniorNet throughout New Zealand. My understanding is that Grant was hugely instrumental in the establishment of The Federation of New Zealand SeniorNet Societies Inc and ran the National Office until December 31st last year. Grant visited every SeniorNet regularly and his guest spots were always very welcome and informative. He constantly pushed us to keep up with the fast moving changes in IT and often demonstrated the latest tool or gadget when he visited. His recognition in the New Year’s Honours (MNZM) is very much deserved and I congratulate him on behalf of SeniorNet Kapiti. I wish him well in his post-retirement ventures which, I am sure, will be many and varied!
I would also like to acknowledge the contribution of Jude Mitchener who was Grant’s “Right-hand lady” as National Administration Officer and who has also retired at the end of 2019. Jude was always there at the end of the phone or an email and always handled enquiries professionally and quickly. I also wish Jude well in her retirement.
Grant’s successor is Heather Newell, MComms, FFINZ, and she will be working from her home office (and car I suspect!) based in Upper Hutt. There is an excellent introduction to Heather in the latest Gizmoe magazine here. Among her other talents, Heather has 30 year’s experience in Fundraising, a skill which should prove invaluable (and hopefully profitable!) for SeniorNets throughout the country. I wish her every success in her new role and look forward to meeting her in person when she visits us in Kapiti.
Finally, word-of-mouth is one of our most valuable and effective forms of advertising. If you’ve had a great experience at SeniorNet Kapiti, please tell a friend (or two) and encourage them to join and learn with us. Conversely, if you don’t feel we delivered everything you expected, please talk to one of our Tutors or a member of our Committee so we can work out what didn’t go right. It’s never easy to quickly change the content of our Courses and Workshops but if we need to move with the times, that’s exactly what we’ll try to do.
The start to 2020 has been eventful for many people, not least those travelling overseas or facing the flooding in the South or the drought in the North. Thanks to our computers, smartphones or tablets we are able to get the information we need to stay informed and better prepared for whatever is being thrown at us.
That being said there are many unanswered questions rattling round in my head such as what is the likely impact on us, our children, grandchildren and will there be jobs for them in 10 years? What will be the effect of the continuing rapid development of all things related to computing and communication, will it benefit all of us or only the few?
These questions are not new of course, the inventor of Logic, the foundation for our computers, was Aristotle, the Greek Philosopher, who wrote a six-part book called the Organon in which he sets out the partly technical and partly metaphysical disquisition of the subject of Logic, and it has continued for more than 2000 years without scarcely any essential change to the present.
There is much to be said for logic though I find that currently it appears to be in short supply whether it relates to US politics, handling of the Chinese crisis, politics in Europe [or Australia], or the question of whether we need 5G right now, or whether the Concert programme should be axed.
But such meaty questions we leave to intelligent, far seeing, competent people [hope springs eternally] to make the right decision on our behalf on, i.e. they know what is best for us.
We do not at Kapiti SeniorNet make decisions for you, instead we offer you learning to enhance your own knowledge in the use of the tools of today, the computer, the tablet and the smartphone, with the intention of making your every day a little better, varied and fun. So don’t hesitate, join us and book your next course or workshop today.
P.S. Just had a phonecall supposedly from Spark telling me that they would disconnect my landline and other communication lines in 24 hours and to press 1 for more information. A scam that’s very believable, but since I do not use Spark as a provider of our services it was obviously a scam. Beware if you do happen to get one of these calls, just put the phone down, do not press 1.