Computational Hiatus

Remember life before computers? The percentage of the population that does diminishes every day. Even a brief break from them is an adjustment, even for me, and I remember when typing involved a typewriter. My laptop sits here, beside my suddenly over-worked iPad, waiting for Gail to install a new hard drive. It’s winter, and computationally, much is moving a bit slower. That’s probably going to change.

Traffic to this blog has doubled since twelve months ago; yet, there’s been a collective pause as people wait for dramatic news. Has the house sold? No. Have my stocks recovered? No. There weren’t even any good MicroVision rumors out of the Consumer Electronics Show. Book sales are walking along with the release of Walking Thinking Drinking Across Scotland; and yes, I probably will produce a paperback version soon, but first I want to finish a client’s book. Speaking of clients, my consulting work was entering a new phase just as the hard drive started chattering instead of just whirring. There is good news, but I suspect the traffic awaits the celebratory level of announcements that my finances have dramatically improved. Maybe it will happen that way. Maybe it won’t. In the meantime, most folks can concentrate on other aspects of their lives. I’ll holler if something happens.

For the last few days, I’ve been on a computational hiatus. This iPad can do a lot, but it can’t do the detailed or quality level of work I prefer. I can keep up, but I can’t progress. I can’t apply for jobs. Announcing this weekend’s upcoming talk in Langley Has been difficult. By luck, my Scotland photos are on my iPad, so I’ve been able to upload a few to my new online gallery at Horizons But I’ve had to put aside the fine formatting of grant proposals, or extracting project data from massive spreadsheets. It makes me that much more aware of the more permanent digital divide others are forced to live with. I should be back up to full connectivity by Wednesday. For others, it may be never.

I’ve taken the time to take some time. Fortunately, the founder of my major project, Liza Loop, founder of the History of Computing for Learning and Education, understands. And this happens to happen during a hiatus in our process. Better now than earlier or later. (By the way, I now have the title of Interim Project Manager. Care to make it more permanent? Then help us raise funding to create a virtual museum for software and educational documents that redefined the way we learn.

As I said, I’ve taken the time to take some time. (And no, I can’t readily go back and edit what I type. Sorry, wordsmiths, but such is blogging from iPad.) It has been months since I took more than an hour to sit and think. Strategies, tactics, or even just relaxing haven’t been much of an option while I scramble to make enough money to appease the mortgage company. Thanks to clients, patrons, and benefactors I’ve been able to pay all of the other bills and even have enough for a new hard drive. That was a pleasant and undramatic revelation. Thanks, folks.

The other major benefit is one that is valuable regardless of finances. I had time to relax, to think, and to feel. It is relaxing to sit for a few minutes, but it wasn’t until I’d disconnected for a day that my mind untensed. I realized how, even after an hour of doing nothing, my mind was still tensed, prepared and waiting to dive back into a cerebral task. Two days later, my forehead wrinkles were less engrained. A few days into  this hiatus, various emotions feel safe enough to say hello again. (Though, typing on an iPad has scrunched things up a bit. That will pass.)

Friends surviving the corporate cubicle world call and vent about the constant level of urgency, even for non-urgent businesses. As a society, we complain about stress, but it is a required fashion. Suits and ties may have acquiesed to casual clothes, but casual doesn’t describe typical corporate culture.

I look forward to returning to full computational operations. There is much work to do. The mortgage company continues to call and I continue to do things like eat. But, I’ve now reminded myself that what I’m working towards aren’t the things in advertisements. I’m working to feelings, feeling at ease, a relief from stress, and time to appreciate it all. I look forward to frequent, intentional, pleasant, computational hiatuses.

And, I look forward to a real keyboard, a mouse, and helping people build museums, publish books, construct houses, live their lives, and dance!

About Tom Trimbath

real estate broker / consultant / entrepreneur / writer / photographer / speaker / aerospace engineer / semi-semi-retired More info at: and at my amazon author page:
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1 Response to Computational Hiatus

  1. Susan Averett says:

    Wonderfully introspective and profound. Thanks, Tom!

    Sue Averett The Enchanted Studio photographic and healing arts

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