Discovering an Old FavoritePosted on May 6, 2013 by
“A self-taught man usually has a poor teacher.” ~ Henny Youngman
Did you know that the little iPhone I carry around with me is more powerful than the computer that took Apollo 11 to the moon? It’s true. The Apollo 11 computer was just 64 kilobytes!
It’s amazing, isn’t it? I can balance my checking account on my phone. I get 200 cable stations on my TV, and I bet someday I’ll be able to watch them all at the same time. And I’m pretty sure my kids don’t know how to dial a rotary telephone.
Yes, we’ve come a long, long way from Atari Pong!
(For my younger readers, Pong was a very simple computer game where you made a little ball go back and forth and .…. Well, I guess you kind of had to be there.)
But technology development for its own sake just creates shiny distractions. In the rush for new hardware, new applications, and new and more sophisticated Internet sites, it’s easy to forget about yesterday’s website of the day.
So this month, I’m taking a look at a website that’s well-known and not so shiny anymore, but incredibly useful: Youtube.
Yes, Youtube. I know, it’s old news,
But Youtube Isn’t just for wardrobe malfunctions anymore. Sure, you can watch the Shamwow guy, or see the zoo lady tickle the baby penguin (I love that one!), or be inspired by that great Chrysler Super Bowl commercial from 2011.
But Youtube is also a massive treasure trove of incredibly practical, how-to advice. Need to stage a house? Fix a leaky faucet? Learn Excel? It’s all there, and then some! In fact, I have some really useful videos there, too. Heck, let’s not stop there. You can also learn to balance a checkbook, clip your dog’s toenails, or learn the Welsh national anthem.
Let’s say you want to install a new ceiling fan. In the past, you were at the mercy of those incomprehensible paper instructions that come in the box. But you can search Youtube and actually watch the installation. If you find a decent video, those paper instructions become darned near disposable. That can make all the difference in the world!
Be careful, though, whose advice you follow. Like the Internet generally, anybody can post on Youtube. A video made by MegaHardware Store is probably okay, but even those guys can mess things up once in a while. So consider the source, and always verify with other written or visual instructions. I recommend watching two or three videos, not just one. Watching more than one can help clarify confusing instructions, and can also tip you off to unreliable advice if you see inconsistencies.
So while you’re enjoying all the best new stuff on the Web. don’t ignore those old standbys like Youtube. They’re more helpful than ever.
And by the way, if you go to a yard sale and you find a vintage game called Kaboom, I want it. See, in Kaboom, they had this stick figure man trying to avoid a bomb, and there was actually sound, which was very cool, and … Oh, never mind…