Keeping up with technology

A recent computer purchase has me both perplexed and happy with the changes in technology.

Asking around, the changes that have made me question Microsoft come as a surprise to others, as well.

I have owned a computer of one kind or another for more than 20 years. With them came the Microsoft software like Word. I owned the computer, therefore I owned the software.

With today’s computers, the software is no longer the property of the owner of said computer. The clerk at the store didn’t tell me this. Microsoft did…in its own way.

I thought I was the owner of the software after agreeing to “purchase” Microsoft Office when I was at the store. How else would I be able to work on word processing documents?

Well, the word “purchase,” used by the clerk, was an inaccurate description of the transaction. I found out, after installing said software, the money I paid would provide me use of it for just one year. After that year, I will have to pay $99.99 each year to continue using the software.

“It’s a lease,” I was told by a computer-savvy co-worker. “You didn’t know that?”

I am sorry, but I would have to read a tech-savvy manual to stay up-to-date on such advances in technology. There are few people in my circle who do that…at least from my recent conversations.

So, I learned the software and computer operations giant is seeking to further take my hard-earned money and am left to wonder about people who are living on shoestring budgets. It did take planning before I could even make my computer purchase.

On the flip side, today’s computers require each user to set up a “Microsoft account.”

When doing so, the user enters important information, such as a birthdate. Hmmmm…I could go on a little rant about that, but I won’t.

Instead, I will share the benefit of sharing the birthdate of each user.

My youngest child is 12-years-old. Because of his age, the computer software automatically keeps him from visiting websites that are not appropriate for children.

He cannot even look at a Facebook page using the new computer.

For parents who don’t want to monitor their children’s online activities, this is definitely a great preventative measure to ensure their children don’t have access to websites deemed inappropriate.

Microsoft even provides weekly activity logs for children who are younger. Not knowing this, I was surprised in a good way when I received my first report. It details which websites my child is visiting, as well as the amount of time that child spends on the internet.

It’s another great tool for parents wanting to monitor their child’s online activities without sitting in the room, watching the child or the clock themselves.

Although I don’t spend much time on the computer at home and still have much to learn about the many features that come with the technological advances, I think I should have done my homework so I wouldn’t have been so surprised at what I have learned so far.


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