Progress and improvements in capabilities are expected in technology. In fact, I’ve told my own kids – “Buy the best tech you can afford/need at the best price you can find then don’t look back!” Soon a newer and shinier and faster and more capable thing will appear. It is the way it is.
Once you do make the decision to make a tech purchase though it really can be a huge event that changes your entire look out on what you can achieve.
Here is the most important thing I want you to take away from this blog post – read this much at least!
New technology can bring you a fresh outlook on the use of technology. Trying to continue to use the old tech can make you frustrated! When you KNOW what is possible but you don’t have access to those tools has the potential to make a person frustrated.
So…. dive in and talk to people that are using the new tech. Ask the important questions like can this really benefit me? Can this really make my life better? Can this really open up new possibilities? Is the new tech really going to actually be a game changer?
Then make the purchase.
Then…. become a user! Use the heck out of it! Ask people that know more than you for tips and trick! Read blogs, subscribe to twitter users, watch some YouTube videos. Actually become aware of just how the new technology can be used and what it can do for you!
BE A USER!
Game Changing Tech
The new MacBook Pro with the TouchBar and the 12.9 iPad Pro are some of those game changers. Let me start with sharing my impressions of the MacBook…
- This thing is fast – so freaky fast I have to believe that Jimmy Johns had something to do with the creation of this thing. (Jimmy Johns…. don’t get it? …. go google it)
- Spotlight is freak fast too!
- Having the ability to unlock the computer using the fingerprint sensor is cool.
- Having the ability to unlock the computer through an AppleWatch is Amazing!
- The TouchBar is a very handy way to work I HATE taking my hands off the keyboard while working on the laptop. The TouchBar gives me one more way to keep my hands on the keys, in addition to the the hundreds of keyboard shortcut that I use all the time. I love the fact that it SO much more useful than those Fn keys!
- The keyboard has remarkably changed since 2010! I had not realized how tactile I had become in my typing until I tried typing on the new keyboard.
- SIRI on my laptop totally rocks! Not sure exactly how many ways I can utilize it but I’m trying it every chance I get!
- AirDrop is a game changer for those that have an iPhone/iPad and frequently start a project on those devices then change over to work on their laptops. Don’t worry DropBox and Box – you will still be used, just not nearly as critical now.
- AirPlay has always been awesome from my iPad during class time. Now my laptop does the same! At home it is really sweet to be able to AirPlay over to the TV.
- The fact that I have to buy a $40 dongle just to print at school is frustrating as all get out. BUT, is this Apple’s issue or my tech department? They will not open up the wireless network to allow printing. COME ON GUYS GET WITH THE TIMES!
- Dongles are now in my bag for ethernet and USB. Soon I will need two more – an USB-c to Thunderbolt and then a Thunderbolt 2 to Firewire. This will allow me to record via my 32 channel PreSonus mixer. Annoying and expensive but props to Apple for making sure that there is still a solution that “just works”.
- It is LOUD!
- It is lighter and skinnier. Those few ounces make a difference. My backpack is noticeably lighter now!
- This trackPad with force touch is crazy! It is also HUGE.
Now, the iPadPro. I have now worked with the 12.9 inch iPad since last year. I have not written about it much here but here are some thoughts…
- Every single music teacher should be given one of these by their school district. It should be a gift to the teacher upon day one of their hire!
- The Apple Pencil is very cool. Use that pencil with music notation or use it with an app like GoodNote that recognizes your handwriting and you will be astounded.
- It is BIG
- It is LOUD – In fact I don’t always hook up speakers during class time when I want to play something quickly for the kids. Most days the sound system is hooked up and ready to go nut when it isn’t I simply turn the iPad up and hit play. Not a single kid has complained about “not hearing”.
- More complex scores like my High School band scores are totally readable on this thing.
- There is SO much more screen real estate that when using it as a musical instrument I don’t feel cramped. I do have big hands and this was an issue with the smaller iPads.
- The screen is beautiful – I love having my photos on this device! I love showing those photos to others because it is just such and amazing experience!
- I do still like using a bluetooth keyboard with it. I refuse to get Apple’s though. I don’t want the extra weight on it. It’s big but by itself I don’t mind the weight. With ANY of the available keyboards that are cases it becomes a huge nuisance though. I simply bought a Logitech keyboard and leave it sitting on my desk. When I am out and about I use the on screen keyboard and never really too much about it.
- Oh… and using this thing as a music production studio simply rocks!
I do fully understand why some people get freaked out when they are first adapting to new technology. This keyboard on the MacBook is messing with my brain. After a week with it though I am retraining myself and getting along just fine. There is a learning curve though upon getting new tech – Please don’t let that stop you from jumping in and getting new tech! Take it one thing at a time though – even I have felt overwhelmed and have to remind myself that I can only do/learn so much at a time. So pick one or two things and go for it!
Yes, tech will fail you. My electronic ensemble had a performance last night and I could not get the microphones to work! Still haven’t figured it out – it’s driving me nuts. HAVE A BACK UP PLAN (Part of that back up plan is to NOT become so frustrated you give up)
I’ve walked out of my office two or three times every day this week with a big ol grin on my face and my daughter just looks at me and shakes her head because she knows it is a result of being a user of new tech.
BUT, now My Daughter has the same look on her face and is now digging in to using my old laptop, which to her is brand new! She is doing projects that she could never have done before. Those projects will be a very visible part of the senior graduation and awards programs. When I look at her face I will see “that look” and I will knowingly smile because I will know what that look is from.
BE A USER!