The Saturday Morning Post© 2017

“You can observe a lot just by watching.”
Yogi Berra

Teaching Old Dogs

Maybe you have had this experience. As a matter of fact, if you know anyone under thirty, you are certain to have had this experience.

Let me set the stage a bit. My daughter and I were at an estate sale this morning, not her idea, but we were there. Spotting a silver bowl my wife would like, I took a picture of it with my iPhone. Then having clicked the Photos icon, intending to attach the photo to a text and send it to her, I heard a common refrain in our family, “Dad! What are you doing?”

Now, if you are under thirty, you can stop reading, as you know what happens next. But if you’re north of that, read on, you’ll be glad you did.

My daughter took my phone and said, “Why are you doing it that way, you just…,” and zip zing she took a new photo of the item and sent it to my wife in about two seconds flat.

I learned nothing from the experience, because it happened so fast that I couldn’t really tell what she had done, other than that it was way faster than what I’ve been doing since I began texting photos. Why wasn’t I informed of this sooner?

In the Apple store, the instructors don’t touch your phone at all when they teach you something every third grader knows. So, when my kids roll their eyes and do some magic with my phone, I ask them to make like an Apple instructor. Show me again, with me holding the phone and doing the steps myself.

This is more or less what she said:

  • Touch the text icon on your phone’s home screen.
  • Touch the name of the person you want to send your text to.
  • Notice that a little window opens at the bottom of the screen that reads iMessage.
  • To the left of the iMessage window is a capital A that looks like it was made out of Popsicle sticks.
  • I don’t know what that does, but I will ask her later.
  • To the far left of the iMessage window is an image of a camera.
  • Touch that.
  • A wide window will open up below the iMessage window.
  • On the upper left side of that window is an image of a camera, and below that is an image of a couple of black rectangles above the word Photos. Ignore those completely.
  • To the far right side of your phone are the last couple of photos you have taken. Ignore those too.
  • But in the middle is a small live camera screen!
  • Point the camera towards what you want to take a picture of and touch the white round circle in the lower part of that camera window.
  • Presto! That’s an old fashioned word.
  • Not only have you taken a photo, but if you wait a second or two that photo will attach itself to the text you want to send to your wife (or husband). And you can write something underneath the picture if you want to.
  • Next push the white arrow in the round blue circle to the lower right of the photo you just took.
  • And that will send your new photo to your recipient.

It takes less time to do this than to explain it, so give it a try and you’ll have made your life easier. And there you have the first chapter of your new book on how to simplify your life.

I’m sorry I don’t know how to do this trick on a Samsung phone, but if you find someone of a certain age, I’m sure they would be happy to show you. Then ask them to tell you, while you hold your phone and follow the steps yourself, if you want to be able to do it again without supervision.

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