Later Learners

I have the utmost respect for anyone who takes on the challenge of learning to use a computer at an advanced age. I am of the sandwich generation (Gen X); growing up in rural Michigan, most of my peers did not have a computer at home and so were not exposed to computers until high school. When we got to high school, the “computer lab” still had a mix of typewriters and 286 IBM clones.

My family, however, owned a Commodore 64/128 (we later upgraded to an Amiga 500). The C64 was a great platform for games, but I can remember doing some word processing on it as well, using GEOS. Happily, I avoided ever having to type a paper of any significant length on a typewriter.

Having a computer at home meant that I was exposed to the technology sooner than most of my friends and so learned to use it without much effort. Just having the time to “play around with” computers meant that I could build confidence and mess around with stuff without worrying that I would break anything. That’s a skill I use to this day, “What does this do? Click it and find out!”

In fact, I think that’s a key to using Logos Bible Software or any other technology… just spending some time playing with it. All technology requires some figuring out, and that’s as true of a book as it is of an operating system. I believe it’s a truism that no user interface, no application, no hardware is intuitive the very first time you use it. But over time, it becomes second nature.

In last year’s Bible software industry survey, we found that fully half of the Bible software users polled are age 46 years or older. It’s fairly common to find out that one of our users is installing Logos on his or her very first computer. It energizes me to know that someone who is mature in the faith and who has studied Scripture for decades using certain tools is willing to pick up and learn to use a new set of tools.

This week, we heard from a well-known preacher and author who is taking that step and starting to use Bible software tools for the first time, well into a lifetime of ministry. To which I say, “More power to you, Dr. Lutzer!”

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When the Master of Ceremonies announced at a conference that a man named Scott Lindsey would give a presentation on Bible Software, I did not want to attend. Since I have no natural gifts for technology, I’d made up my mind that I would just study the Bible the old fashioned way: paper books. The only reason I stayed for the presentation was because it was held in the room in which I was sitting!

“Thanks to God, I discovered that Logos had created a program that even I could learn. Since that time we’ve had Scott here at the Moody Church for a session on using this powerful tool. Now, I can hardly wait to open my computer and log on to the program and have hundreds of commentaries and books at my disposal. I am proof that Logos Bible Software can be learned even by those who find themselves technically challenged.

“And by the way, Scott not only presents the technology, but his own love of the Scriptures comes through with every click of the mouse. And incredibly, he remains accessible by phone so that all of us can get the help we need. I’m asking, why did it take me so long?”

Dr. Erwin Lutzer – Moody Church

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Written by
Daniel Foster

Daniel enjoys explaining technology to people, capturing the perfect screenshot, playing board games, and world travel. Not in that order.

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Written by Daniel Foster
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