Sunday, June 12, 2005

Confessions of a Repressed Computer Geek

Just thought I’d share that I’m enjoying this blogging. Not just the journaling but learning the dynamics of HTML. Yes, Blogger supplies a template, however, it does permit some leeway for manipulation.

During the early 1980’s (or maybe it was the late 1970’s) I remember my Dad coming home from school with an Atari PC. We quite didn’t know what to do with it other than play video games, but, I taught myself how to type and learned how to create my own video games from the computer magazines. I remember how time intensive it was to enter in all of the coding and the attention to detail it required, but I always was proud of the end product. I was (and still am) amazed at the coding. I think my parents specifically thought the computer stuff was for my brother, but I enjoyed it, too.

There were some downsides, and I don’t think my parents know it. I do remember (accidentally) erasing big floppy discs and deleting files from ClipArt. Oh, well. Guess those files weren’t that important.

The third year as a front desk clerk in Yellowstone we converted to a computerized system (yes, up until 1993 the park was on a manual system. The property I worked at had 609 units, all handled manually. Today, I can’t even imagine that). I quickly learned the lodging program and used that and my people skills to get promoted. The following year we changed systems and I mastered that. I ended up training several of the front desks in the park and always told the students “there isn’t anything you can do to break it.” Well, I found ways.

I ended up breaking the codes in order to access other national parks that were using the same software and access other areas I wasn’t supposed to. I could usually get out of these situations but sometimes, would have to sheepishly call the software company and tell them what I did and to get me out.

Eventually I was introduced to Word and the Microsoft products and somehow (unintentionally) figured out how to create computer viruses. I remember the IT guy at Death Valley scolding me and asking how I did it and I couldn’t give him an honest answer. I really think he was intimidated because I had mastered the resort’s software system and he knew he was no longer the one with all of the control.

And here I am today. I have not kept with technological progress but I’m trying to catch up. I am working on building my own site ground up (not the cookie-cutter site). I think it was sometime in the late 1990’s that I learned that some porn star created and updates her own site. I am amazed with how successful she made the site. No, I am NOT creating a porn site, but a site to post my formal writings. Besides, mine are “real and they’re SPECTACULAR.” (Seinfeld fans will understand).

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