My name is Kara Davies-Hobbs and I help people learn how to use their tech. I started Kara’s Tech Community to build a support network for people who don’t find it easy to learn how to use their new: phones, tablets, laptops, computers, printers, watches, cameras and televisions etc. My aim is to help people to keep pace with change and develop the confidence to fully explore (and enjoy) all the benefits that new technology can bring.
I have always loved using tech, I’m like a kid at Christmas when it comes to figuring out new gadgets. During my 20 years as a video editor, I worked with a wide range of devices with many applications; I found it easy to pick up, I learnt as I went along and I enjoyed it! When I got stuck, I relished the challenge of figuring it out for myself.
Recently though, I’ve felt as though I have been falling behind the curve a bit. I haven’t been working for a company that needs me to keep right up to date and since working for myself I haven’t prioritised my spending on the latest gadgets.
I have found myself trying to catch up and at the same time trying to decide how much of technology to let into my life and how much time to ring fence for disconnecting from it all.
Today, we are surrounded by people using technological devices (smart phones [iPhone/Galaxy], tablets [iPad/Surface Pro/Pixel Slate/Galaxy Tab] and computers [Apple/Microsoft/Acer/Dell/HP]. We may have smart meters in our homes, electrical cars on our drives and these days a great many people use online shops, banks, and even file their tax returns online.
Those of us that have already learnt how to use these devices don’t even remember the fear and struggle of the early days of trying to get to grips with it all.
Some of us though, don’t see the need to change the way we do things, we don’t find it easy to learn about ‘new technology’ it’s a bit of a scary prospect and it doesn’t come naturally to us. ‘Intuitive’ devices often arrive without a manual and many of us don’t have someone who we can rely on to show us how to use them, or what to do when they won’t work. That’s where Kara’s Tech Community comes in, not only do we help people that are struggling to get to grips with their tech, we explain the benefits that the tech can bring to their lives and also provide accountability (with the most gentle of nudges) whilst guiding their journey through to tech competency.
There are also as many reasons not to use technology as there are benefits. For many of us the promise of usefulness and fun is outweighed by the fears: of deception, mistakes, expense, addiction and anti-social behaviour; all these concerns hold us back.
Even for those of us that really don’t want to do things differently, who think we’re ‘A little bit slow at that sort of thing’, or ‘A bit thick when it comes to computers’ change is happening (with us or without us) and the longer we avoid getting to grips with it all, the more daunting the climb up the digital ladder will become.
We address these concerns , as a community by supporting each other and sharing our learning. Together we can find a path through, we can decide which tools to make use of and find a way to keep it all in check and still live balanced healthy lives.
Do you know a reluctant parent who doesn’t know what to do with an iPad, or a nervous grand parent who would rather leave their smart phones in the hall drawer? If so, maybe they would be happier learning amongst others who are in the same boat, who can learn to use new technology together and who can provide support and motivate them to learn at their own pace (however slow it may be).
I am leading a FREE, four week “Introduction to Technology” course in the Moseley and Edgbaston areas of Birmingham (UK) where students can meet up, once a week, to learn about the language used around ‘technological stuff’, what it all means and to also meet others in the K T C (Kara’s Technology Community) who are also ‘not really into all that technical stuff!’ but who are trying to not lag too far behind.
Call me if you are interested – Kara: 0121 449 3832
In the next few weeks I shall start to add useful content to this site, that will be a resource for people to use whilst learning about the bits of technology that they need to get to grips with.