Seniors / Boomers And Social Networking – My Thoughts

What Led Me To Write This

I read an article in the March 25, 2010 issue of the Broward, Florida edition of the Sun Sentinel newspaper, entitled “Social connections key during retirement”, by Janet Kidd Stewart.

I could not find it on the site, but by doing a Google search for her I did find the same article, albeit with a different title, for the full story go to the following link:
(update: as of August 4, 2014 link no longer valid, could not find another copy of the article via search)

In the article she talks about Penny Hall, who “when she retired about 18 months ago, the 59-year-old had plenty of savings and retirement revenue from real estate investments, but lacked a plan for a social life”.

Further along in the article Hall is quoted as saying “It’s hard because everyone my age is still pretty busy with work”

My Thoughts

As I read this article, it came to my mind that computer user groups, are a great way for people like Ms. Hall to generate social connections, especially with others that are already retired, or soon to be retired.

I know that I have more social connections now, even though I am not yet retired, due to my involvement with two local computer user groups, and most of those in the groups are already retired, some for a good length of time. Others I know, are also members of more than one such group.

The article by Ms. Stewart, came on the heels of a presentation made at the Boca Raton Computer Society (BRCS), which I attended on March 17th. At that presentation, we were given an overview of what social networking is all about, and as I looked around the room I noticed that I was the youngest one there. Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter were the attention-getters, and the most discussed.


Computer User Groups are a great way for seniors / boomers, as well as those even younger, to develop social contacts, and keep up with technology at the same time. Not only are there specific meetings, most form some kind of social connection outside of the group.

So what are you waiting for, find a computer user group near you and get socially active:
Association of Personal Computer User Groups – Find User Groups <>

Computer Free Weekend


I left work on Friday, September 4, 2009 and returned to work this morning September 9, 2009. During the time I was away, I had no computer access, and I found it very refreshing.

I had lots of time to spend reading, relaxing, fishing, talking with my wife, as well as just vegetating. I read five books, watched two movies on DVD, and took a nap each afternoon.

FYI, the books read were:

  • Undone by Karin Slaughter
  • Storm Cycle by Iris Johansen and Roy Johansen
  • Killer Summer by Ridley Pearson
  • Vanished by Joseph Finder
  • Fire and Ice by J. A. Jance

Sometimes I just need to get away from it all. Usually, I am on the computer all day at work, working on editing two newsletters for computer user groups, and even sometimes cruising the internet strictly for pleasure.

I liked this so much, that I intend to try to schedule a weekend, or long weekend each quarter, to refresh and recharge.

How about it, is this something you have done? If so, how often do you have to recharge? Leave a comment and let me know.

Internet – Tabbed Browsing

At last nights BPCA meeting, I was showing some of the different sites that I frequent. One of the members asked what the tabs were for. I was using Firefox at the time.

The question prompted me to give a short version of the reasons I prefer to using a browser with tabbing capabilities. As it turns out, a good number in attendance use Internet Explorer exclusively for their web browsing, which does not currently have tabbing capabilities. I have not checked things out for myself, but I have read that there are plug-ins available to enable tabbed browsing in IE and that the new IE 7 will have it.

Years back I experimented with the Opera browser, which I believe was the first to offer tabbed browsing, and liked the idea, so when Firefox came along I switched to it and have been using it for quite a while now.

Now to my reasons for preferring a tab capable browser.

I can have a large number of sites open all at the same time, and be able to keep track of where they are very easily. By contrast, without tabbed browsing all these sites would be open in different windows, making it very hard to separate them from other open programs.

When I am using a search engine, regardless of which one, I can open links to the results in separate tabs, which load in the background, letting me keep looking at the results for more pertinent information.

I do a lot of research with my browser and keeping sites open in separate tabs enables me to quickly retrieve information, without the necessity of continually using the back or forward buttons or the history to keep going back and forth between sites.

It is very easy to move from tab to tab, or even rearrange the order of the tabs, once you get used to it.

There are probably a lot more reasons users like tabs for browsing, those listed above are just my main reasons. If you have any thoughts regarding tab use or even just have a different reason for using them than what I have listed, please let me know.

Try tabbed browsing. If you do not like it, you can always go back to the non tabbed browsing that works for you.