How To Be A Tech Hero Using Teach Parents

imageMany of the regular readers of this site are very sophisticated computer users, and I’m sure, this sophistication can be something of a two edged sword. High level users are often seen as built in tech support by family, friends, neighbors, co-workers; the good looking chick you’re chatting up at a party – the list goes on.

Personally, I have no problem with the quick answer solution, and I do mean quick – but troubleshooting a system –  forget about it. When asked to jump in to save a system, I make it clear that I’m not the designated go-to guy, and that the Geek Squad, or the like, would be happy to help.

I do however, make an exception for one specific group; older adults – the so called “silver generation”. I have a soft spot for older people who are willing to take a bite out of the technology apple, and it’s a small way that I can contribute to my community.

It’s been my experience, that an older computer user is generally not too much different from any new user – it’s the simply things (simple to you and me, that is), that often trip them up.

Recently, I came across a a terrific free resource (which I’m now using as an assist with the “silver generation”),  “”; a site developed by a group of Google employees which is, as they put it “ designed to help “kids” teach their parents about computer basics.”

The group has developed a series of 50 plus instructional videos, dealing with computer basics – the type of basic issues that often confuse new users.

The following screen captures will give you some idea of what’s available on the site, and just how easy it is to link up with the correct instructional video. Click on a graphic to expand it to its original size.



This graphic illustrates how easy it is to select a video, choose the email message and get it ready to go.


If you sometimes think that you have a sign painted on your back, that calls out to the world – “I’m the go-to guy for all your computer woes”, you might just find this site invaluable.

Check it out here: Teach Parents Tech.

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Filed under Google, Instructional Videos, Interconnectivity, Older Adult Computer Users, Recommended Web Sites, Tech Net News

11 responses to “How To Be A Tech Hero Using Teach Parents

  1. Mal

    Hey Bill,
    What a great idea. While I agree that most older people are not tech savvy, I have come across some older people who know more than me. But this is a great resource for the majority who would like to know, but find it intimidating. Good on you for putting this up.

    I get sick of the constant calls from “friends” saying their computer is screwing up too. Usually it’s because they haven’t taken my advice. So, bad luck is all I can say. Sometimes pain is a great motivator.


    • Hey Mal,

      You’re right – pain has a nasty way of getting one’s quick attention. Ouch!

      That site has already saved me a bunch of explanations. Glad I found it.



  2. John

    I reckon I fit into that “silver generation” not that there is actually too much silver left these days. 🙂


  3. Hi Bill

    thanks for the link on the tutorials. The presentation is nice and crip

    However, its a little too Mac centric and very little content on Windows PCs



    • tim

      Mac-centricity may be because many non-techie people opt for the lower learning curve of a MAC. Another explanation may be more to do with anti-windows sentiment.

    • Hi David,

      I agree, it would be nice if it were more Windows centric. Hopefully, this is the type of free service that will grow long legs.



  4. tim

    Good resource. I just learned about it via a good friend’s website: (Brett often has some good tech tips going on, check his site out)

    I also have a few responses to your article.

    There have been times that I have felt overwhelmed by ppl asking for computer help. What I’m beginning to see these days, at least in my own circle of friends and family, is more of an appreciation. More and more fiends and family are beginning to insist on paying for ky help. As some who is not inherently wealthy, it helps.

    Also, I’m not much of a fan of the geek squad type services. I personally have found a local guy (not an over-priced and under-performing chain store service) who I can refer ppl to for more involved repairs and such. This is helpful because I can still do the easy stuff but they also trust my word-of-mouth referrals.

    All of that being said, it is good to have another tutorial resource. If you lmao me, you know I hate reinventing the wheel. I often find either how-to articles or youtube videos to save time in explaining how to do things. Sometimes they even turn out to be good ideas for writing articles for my own blog.

    Anyhow, thanks for another good resource.

    • Hey Tim,

      Agreed – getting paid takes the sting out of it. As the man said, “If you work for nothing, you’ll never be out of a job”.

      I hear you on the “local” referrals, and that works well in smaller communities. In Toronto however, with 10 Million+ people in the Metropolitan area, my “local” might be 30/40 miles from the person I’m speaking with. In such a case, a local referral is rarely practical.

      Merry Christmas to you, and your family.


  5. Hey Bill,
    Great find! I know I’ll use it a lot in the future. Thanks.