Linux for my 80 year old father?

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samriggs
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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by samriggs » Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:53 am

curtvaughan wrote:Well, as a dithery old 64-year old who got my first data processing/computer job at age 22 mucking around on a CDC 64/6600 after getting out of the navy (communications rate) in 1974, I was hired by some rather computationally astute people in their late 30s or early 40s at the time. If folks like them are still dithering around at all, I'd guess them to be in their mid-80s by now. People in their 80s were in their 30s in the sixties, at which time mainframe computing was in full force. Assembly language, Fortran, and Cobol were the lingua-computerie of the day, and some guy named Ritchie, who'd be 75 if alive, was getting the itch to invent a language called C. My point, I guess, is that you should perhaps avoid generalizing 80-somethings as computer illiterate, though as with younger folks, illiteracy can be found.

Hobbling and dithering, half mast be d&*ned! - Curt
not meaning to generalizing all 80 years as computer illiterate just going by what he said in the beginning
My dad IS NOT a computer geek, he wants to turn it on, click and icon, and have it work. He does not want to configure things, hassle with updates, deal with wifi issues, etc
My parents are the same way as a lot of folks that never made the move to computers during that era, I talk to them everyday at work.
Some on the other hand like yourself did jump on the bandwagon when it came out and know probably more then most.
The only reason I moved to computers myself in the early 90's was because it took over my career so it was jump on the bandwagon or lose my job, I just happened to enjoy it more then most in my field at that time.
We actually owe what we have now to those folks that did jump on that bandwagon
But probably 70% to 80% of the folks I talk to never did and just want something as simple as possible to use but their is that 20% to 30% that do know and are a pleasure to listen .
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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Petermint » Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:58 am

Back when IBM PCs first arrived, the doddery old retired people were online researching genealogy using Fidonet and it's predecessors. The ancient ones used discarded Z80s and modems larger than the computer. Fidonet worked overnight because it took 3 hours to send "Hello".

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:44 am

I completely agree, I learned to program in the 1970's using punch cards. However, my father hates any operating system later than Windows XP, which to him, is the best thing ever made. He loathes windows 10. That is why I think Mint 18 with Cinnimon where I put his icons on the desktop to click will be the ideal thing. I work with a bunch of techno illiterates so I know the pain of which you speak.
curtvaughan wrote:Well, as a dithery old 64-year old who got my first data processing/computer job at age 22 mucking around on a CDC 64/6600 after getting out of the navy (communications rate) in 1974, I was hired by some rather computationally astute people in their late 30s or early 40s at the time. If folks like them are still dithering around at all, I'd guess them to be in their mid-80s by now. People in their 80s were in their 30s in the sixties, at which time mainframe computing was in full force. Assembly language, Fortran, and Cobol were the lingua-computerie of the day, and some guy named Ritchie, who'd be 75 if alive, was getting the itch to invent a language called C. My point, I guess, is that you should perhaps avoid generalizing 80-somethings as computer illiterate, though as with younger folks, illiteracy can be found.

Hobbling and dithering, half mast be d&*ned! - Curt

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:46 am

LOL I remember that, and I remember the iconic modem sound. My dad refuses to get anything other than his back flip phone because he "wants a phone to be a phone".
Petermint wrote:Back when IBM PCs first arrived, the doddery old retired people were online researching genealogy using Fidonet and it's predecessors. The ancient ones used discarded Z80s and modems larger than the computer. Fidonet worked overnight because it took 3 hours to send "Hello".

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:47 am

MurphCID wrote:I completely agree, I learned to program in the 1970's using punch cards. However, my father hates any operating system later than Windows XP, which to him, is the best thing ever made. He loathes windows 10. That is why I think Mint 18 with Cinnimon where I put his icons on the desktop to click will be the ideal thing. I work with a bunch of techno illiterates so I know the pain of which you speak. I am going to load up a folder for his desktop with all the pictures of his grandkids, and such.
curtvaughan wrote:Well, as a dithery old 64-year old who got my first data processing/computer job at age 22 mucking around on a CDC 64/6600 after getting out of the navy (communications rate) in 1974, I was hired by some rather computationally astute people in their late 30s or early 40s at the time. If folks like them are still dithering around at all, I'd guess them to be in their mid-80s by now. People in their 80s were in their 30s in the sixties, at which time mainframe computing was in full force. Assembly language, Fortran, and Cobol were the lingua-computerie of the day, and some guy named Ritchie, who'd be 75 if alive, was getting the itch to invent a language called C. My point, I guess, is that you should perhaps avoid generalizing 80-somethings as computer illiterate, though as with younger folks, illiteracy can be found.

Hobbling and dithering, half mast be d&*ned! - Curt

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Petermint » Wed Nov 16, 2016 3:45 pm

hates any operating system later than Windows XP
Everybody hates some or most versions of Windows after XP. :evil: That is why we switched to Linux.
bunch of techno illiterates
Ah, you mean university IT graduates with no work experience. :shock:

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Petermint » Wed Nov 16, 2016 3:52 pm

A larger screen does help oldies with less powerful vision. Now that 78" 4K screens are out, 75" 4K screens are dropping in price. They should be a good buy. The extra few thousand dollars you pay for the screen, you would save through not having to buy new reading glasses each year.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by lexon » Wed Nov 16, 2016 5:42 pm

I have to agree, Mint format is much like the pre-W10 Pc's.
I dual booted an XP Pc about six years ago for a friend but Mint has made dual boot much more difficult with the partition stuff. Once was, a slider I could move to select how much room for Windows and Mint. Not anymore.

I hope Mint continues to keep the same format. No up down arrow on right side of display would be nice again. W10 still has it.
Not looking for help. All ready tried that with no results.

I have a fairly new Dell Inspiron W10 because I wanted a faster Pc.
My girlfriend and stepson bought the same one about the same time and helped me with the new format. Definitely don't like it but I get by. Extremely difficult to dual boot with Mint so I will not try. Cannot even wipe the drive but need it for iTunes, iPhone, iPad and getting music.
I have two older laptops with only Mint 18, Cinnamon.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Petermint » Wed Nov 16, 2016 7:20 pm

Once was, a slider I could move to select how much room for Windows and Mint.
Gparted is the program to change partition sizes. I have it loaded on a small USB memory stick. Just boot from the USB stick and change the partitions.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Sat Nov 19, 2016 11:26 am

Well, I bought the system, installed the Mint 18 Cinnamon edition. Fixed the Wifi issue that seems to affect HP laptops. I then added photos of the grandkids, and set up icons to link to his applications on the desktop. I installed numerous card games in a folder called "games". I set it up with big fonts and icons (too big in my opinion), and will run it for a couple of days to make sure nothing goes wrong, needs fixing before it gets boxed up for Christmas. It is not the most expensive laptop, but so far it is pretty nice for a lower end HP.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Mon Nov 28, 2016 10:48 pm

So far so good. Laptop is stable, everything is up to date, screen is set, icons are huge, fonts are huge, it is a point and click paradise. We will see how he likes it.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Sat Dec 03, 2016 5:19 pm

Well, my brother delivered it to him, and his comment was: "Its almost as good as Windows XP!". No complaints from him yet.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Moem » Sat Dec 03, 2016 6:45 pm

Sounds like you did a fine job there! Congratulations!
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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Sun Feb 26, 2017 2:13 pm

Thanks. He really likes it, and no one has had any issues with him calling for tech support. Now my step mother wants one, so I might get her the same model, and do the same thing.
Moem wrote:Sounds like you did a fine job there! Congratulations!

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Sat Feb 03, 2018 10:15 am

Dad broke his laptop when it fell off the table, so I need to get him a new one. I thought about the same HP, but I am intrigued by a Chromebook repurposed for Mint. Any suggestions or ideas? Also if I get him a new, I am thinking about adding an SSD to replace the hard drive so it is faster.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Petermint » Sat Feb 03, 2018 4:07 pm

SSD removes the problem of a hard disk breaking when the computer slips off the table. For further protection for the computer, you could cover the floor with rubber mats or puppies or kittens.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Sat Feb 03, 2018 5:45 pm

LOL. Good one. It was open and hit at the join of the monitor, and body, and apparently wrecked it pretty well. The SSD would be a Crucial MX300 or MX500 series drive, probably a 275gb or similar.
Petermint wrote:SSD removes the problem of a hard disk breaking when the computer slips off the table. For further protection for the computer, you could cover the floor with rubber mats or puppies or kittens.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by InkKnife » Sun Feb 04, 2018 12:09 am

MurphCID wrote:Dad broke his laptop when it fell off the table, so I need to get him a new one. I thought about the same HP, but I am intrigued by a Chromebook repurposed for Mint. Any suggestions or ideas? Also if I get him a new, I am thinking about adding an SSD to replace the hard drive so it is faster.
Most Chromebooks have just a tiny bit of on onboard flash data storage usually just 32GB. I have no idea if that can be upgraded. I have a 64GB SSD on my Mint system for the boot "disk" but that only works because I also have a 750GB HDD to put data on.
I can see how the chromebook hardware is tempting. Aside from the lack of local storage they are decent little machines but those tiny flash drives are a real issue.
My good old PC:
Core2quad@2.33, 8GB Ram, Radeon HD 6850. 64GB SSD boot Drive, 750GB data dump drive, Mint/Cinnamon edition.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by MurphCID » Sun Feb 04, 2018 11:30 am

That is a very good point, and I suspect even for my father that 32-64 gb will not be enough.

InkKnife wrote:
MurphCID wrote:Dad broke his laptop when it fell off the table, so I need to get him a new one. I thought about the same HP, but I am intrigued by a Chromebook repurposed for Mint. Any suggestions or ideas? Also if I get him a new, I am thinking about adding an SSD to replace the hard drive so it is faster.
Most Chromebooks have just a tiny bit of on onboard flash data storage usually just 32GB. I have no idea if that can be upgraded. I have a 64GB SSD on my Mint system for the boot "disk" but that only works because I also have a 750GB HDD to put data on.
I can see how the chromebook hardware is tempting. Aside from the lack of local storage they are decent little machines but those tiny flash drives are a real issue.

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Re: Linux for my 80 year old father?

Post by Moem » Sun Feb 04, 2018 11:31 am

MurphCID wrote:That is a very good point, and I suspect even for my father that 32-64 gb will not be enough.
Chromebooks are built based on the assumption that you'll want to do all your storage in the cloud. If that's not in the plans, they're not all that great.
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