Thursday, May 13, 2010

Things I'm excited about...

It's kind of chicken or egg...

I have a little boy who loves a screen. But it's not just about wanting to chase funny looking creatures around virtual worlds (though that is a lot of fun for him). It's about something much more zen. And much more valuable (ultimately).

He loves screens because they do not ask anything confusing of him, and if they do, he's allowed to sort out his confusion in his own way and in his own time. He loves screens because they are full of things he is interested in. He loves screens because he can manipulate them, play with them, master them without needing to decode another human being's communication.

And because he loves them, I love them too.

Actually, I love them anyway and I loved them first... but that's another blog entry.

Most parents are lamenting their children's love of the DS, the TV, the computer, the Wii, the PS2 or 3... not us.

Sure he may spend a little too much time on there in the future... but there's something much more important happening right now, IMO. It's a moment in his-story, in Billy's story.

I'm taking it with both hands. It's a teachable moment, for us and for society.

Simple statistics - If we're talking 1 in 58 boys now, and two years ago it was 1 in 250, then it could be (unless something completely bizarre happens, and lets face it there are bigger problems out there in society's mind) 1 in 20 or less in a few years time. That's a lot of kids (people) who struggle with learning from people. A lot of people who seek the safe zone of screens to extend their cognitive skills, life skills, social skills (will I go on...?)

Let's think about this. If you want to keep on fearing the technology, go right ahead. I understand. But if you don't... man, there's a huge and growing market for innovative, credible product.

I don't have the skills, but I know there are people who do. I'm excited for those people, and I'm excited for Billy... boy, are we in a great position to innovate!

Did the geeks make the Aspies, did the Aspies make the geeks? Will the geeks help the Aspies, or will the Aspies help the geeks? It's like a Shakespearean drama... unfolding around our autistic kids... and I, for one, am really keen to be a part of the action.

I'm guessing Billy will be too, but right now he's searching for videos of Giant Salamanders on YouTube.

Found one...

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Clashes always in our house. I love my technology, and see all the ways it benefits the kids, meanwhile, He-who-does-not-compute, unsurprisingly, is strongly in the 'screens are bad for kids' camp.

We probably end up with a healthy balance. He drags them off to do RL stuff, and I play online with them.

Geeks vs Aspies? I'd guess there is only a gene or two between them, if that!

As far as "markets for innovative ... product", well that's a whole 'nother post or three that I could write, but work calls, and I only have time for a quick comment.