Saturday featured another in-person iPad lesson. Dad now has Comcast e-mail down cold — only a bit more practice is required. So we started with serious editing techniques so he can avoid deleting so many letters and words to make a single correction. As on my iPhone, it’s necessary to click after a word and delete backwards. So far, on both the iPad and iPhone deleting a single letter in the middle of a word does not work. Dad also branched out, sending e-mail to a couple of friends in addition to the few family members with whom he has practiced these past six weeks.
Today’s great success was YouTube — the iPad comes with a YouTube icon on its desktop. I demonstrated how to find all sorts of interesting videos — history just waiting to be accessed. Marian Anderson singing on the National Mallin 1939? Check. Leonard Bernstein lecturing at Harvard? Check. An Ogden Nash poetry reading? Check. Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony? Check…with the choice of several conductors. The Reverend William Sloan Coffin delivering a sermon? Check. Bill Moyers? Check, check, check — there must be 20 options with Moyers.
And finally the pièce de résistance. Harry Searing is a master bassoonist and exceptional musician in New York City. He is also a relative. A quick search and there he is on YouTube performing a bassoon concerto.
For whatever reason, whenYouTube opens, the application attempts to get a user to sign in with a password. You do not need to sign in. To avoid this tap the “featured” button on the bottom left-hand corner of the iPad screen. Thumbnails of the featured YouTube videos will fill up the screen so I explained to Dad that most if not all of these are not relevant for him (though the BP oil items could would be when he feels like looking at videos of an environmental disaster).
Fo find videos that interest him, Dad needs to search. I pointed out the YouTube search box at the top right of the iPad screen and we were off. More importantly Dad, and by this time my Mom, were both engaged.
N.B. My parents had printed out the Apple iPad User’s Guide, mentioned in iPad for Dad, #6, more than 100 pages long. They say it provides lots of helpful iPad information, but like so many manuals written by experts, the instructions leave out key steps or bits of information that are significant omissions for people who are just getting started with a new technology.