Tech Savvy Kids

Since our friends moved to Taiwan, we’ve entered the brave new world of Skype. It is a tricky thing to get two webcams and two microphones and two Skypes and two computers all in sync at the same time. When it works, it is a fun and very satisfactory way to communicate. But not always does it work. Never has the Verizon catchphrase “Can you hear me now?” been more often heard at our house.

The other day at one point when Laura and I were talking, she could see me but couldn’t hear me, and I could hear her but I couldn’t see her. We were quite the pair.  Eventually I was able to both see and hear her, but we never did get my mic working so that she could hear me. Thankfully we were also on chat at the time, so I just typed her my answers.

And how do tech savvy kids have a party with friends and family in three different locations in the world?  Well, they do it via Skype.  The other evening my four oldest kids were invited to a friend’s party. Two of the guests, one in Taiwan and one away at college, attended via Skype on two different computers.  The computers were set so that the remote partiers could see the action, and games were chosen that could be played verbally. Despite the inability to teleport snack food, I thought it was terribly clever.

But my teenaged boys have an even better scheme. They’d like to put the video camera on some kind of a wheeled base that could be operated via remote control over the internet.  That way their faraway friends could navigate around the room and chat with whomever they chose. I don’t doubt that they could come up with just such an arrangement, given a bit of time and the right equipment.

What an interesting world we live in!

{ 12 Comments }

  1. The whole webcam/skype thing is pretty incredible. It sure makes it nice to keep in touch with people on the other side of the world.

  2. Skype is great when it actually works! What a cool party story!

  3. And how do tech savvy kids have a party with friends and family in three different locations in the world? Well, they do it via Skype. The other evening my four oldest kids were invited to a friend’s party. Two of the guests, one in Taiwan and one away at college, attended via Skype on two different computers. The computers were set so that the remote partiers could see the action, and games were chosen that could be played verbally. Despite the inability to teleport snack food, I thought it was terribly clever.

  4. Clever, indeed!

    We chat with our Irish kin from time to time on Skype and spend most of our time saying, “Can you hear me? Can you see me?” It’s almost easier just to send an email!

  5. Skype is amazing – that’s how we keep in touch with our family overseas and they get the share in watching our kids grow up. I am very jealous of how tech-savvy this generation will be. The other day the “Technology Teacher” sent a review of what the kids in each grade will learn this year at my daughter’s school. Second graders will be learning how to put together a PowerPoint presentation. The 4th & 5th graders will be writing their own movie, filming it, then editing it on the iMacs! I want to be a 5th grader again!

  6. We use Skype all the time. It is a great way for our boy to stay in touch with his grandparents in another state. They love being able to see him on a frequent basis.

  7. That’s really neat! I hope you’re boys figure out the remote skpe plan. I’m sure I’m not the only one who would be interested in hearing about that:-)

  8. I need to learn how to use Skype with my family living over a thousand miles away!

  9. I downloaded Skype once, but never used it. I keep getting requests from Eastern European prostitutes, and, well, I’m just a patriot. So I don’t Skype.

  10. Backpacking Dad– LOL. That’s hilarious.
    Glad you’re sticking to your..er… patriotism.

  11. Wow! Y’all are way more techie than me. We don’t have Skype and I’m *still* trying to figure out how to add a link to my blog with just a word posted instead of the whole link! LOL I’ll figure it out some day. But I have a feeling Skype might escape me ….

  12. In our house, I wouldn’t get anything techie done without kids to consult. I told my son he’s saving me lots of money by being my free computer consultant. 🙂