Personal Reflections

Learn Browsing

I was offline all these days because I was a) studying; b) my Net connection was down for the past few days because of the incessant rains in Delhi courtesy

I saw a funny thing in yesterday’s Hindustan Times – they’ve started some new series on ‘women stories’ or something, and this particular bit in the side column had me ROFL. They’d given a few ‘sites for women’, and below that, they wrote this (titled as ‘Tip of the Week’):

Never logged on to the Internet? Still wondering what the Web is all about? Come on, it’s really easy. On your computer, look out for the blue ‘e’ icon. Click in the space next to the word ‘address’. Here, type or – you get it, right?

And below that, inviting entries to some supposed ‘quiz question’:

What is a search engine?

People accuse me of cackling like a hyena throughout the day ‘without any reason’ – but stuff like the ones above always provide me solid rebuttals to that (starts ROFL). I just don’t get what’s their point is with the astonishing ‘tip of the week’ – girls are dumb and can’t even start a browser? I certainly don’t think so. So maybe it was a simple pointer for n00bs. If it was, then these were a pathetic set of instructions. “Look for the blue ‘e'”. Oh please, gimme a break. And if our woman subject in question has never launched a browser, ‘looking out for its icon’ certainly won’t start the browser.

The ‘quiz question’ is even more funnier. HT expects that women around Delhi would be eagerly waiting for next week’s issue for the answer. Really, HT should stop trying to insult their readers’ intelligence. I must admit that I haven’t come across many (any?) girl geeks, but that doesn’t mean they don’t know how to use technology in their daily life.

0 replies on “Learn Browsing”

” I must admit that I haven’t come across many (any?) girl geeks “.

The simple fac tis that we’re brain washing and steroetyping our kids, we tell them it’s okay to do this but not okay to do it if you’re a male/female. It simply doesn’t work, all this negative image surrounding “geeks” isn’t helping anybody. Remove the stigma, remove the stupid idiots who became parents by accident and you’ll get a lot more partcipation my friend.

Oh by the way here’s one I really respect.

I think this post said the very same thing – that you CAN’T stereotype girls / women as people who don’t know technology and need a special weekly feature in the newspapers to tell them how to start a browser. 🙂 Neither have I said girl geeks don’t exist, my simple observation is that (unfortunately) not too many girls are interested in the more technical aspects of computing. It’s a bit like guys playing with Hot Wheels and guns when they’re kids, and girls playing with Barbies / Bratz. Stereotype? Yes. But also the truth in case of most kids.

“It’s a bit like guys playing with Hot Wheels and guns when they’re kids, and girls playing with Barbies / Bratz. Stereotype? Yes. But also the truth in case of most kids.”

Huh didn’t you just contradict yourself over there?

See, the point I was trying to make is that parents and other people around them force children into doing things like that from a very early age. I’ve seen mothers getting distressed that their 2 year old girl isn’t taking interest in soft toys; she would rather play with my iPhone (I let her). Hence, the mother tries to somehow blackmail her daughter into taking interest.

Now, this brainwashing happens to every child by his/her parents. Their natural curosity and fascination is killed by the time the parents are finished.

Do you think that such kids will want to understand the subtle naunces of a subject which is off limits to them by default?

No child ever fits into these stereotypes; they’re forced into them.

‘Conditioning’ of children by parents does happen, agreed, and it does play a role. These days however, I’m not sure if it’s very true in urban society. Most parents wouldn’t have objections if their daughter takes up computers or math. Or their son takes up music. It’s more of peer pressure which moulds people into stereotypes. Far more potent.

I can’t help agree.
It’s not just IT is it? It is also Engineering coaching classes, quizzing and robotics.

Since you are talking of Barbies, there was this newspaper article which declared that girls are as good as boys at technology and maths etc. In the same article, they attributed stereotypification (is that a word?) to things as subtle as the occupations that Barbie chooses to indulge in. She has been a nurse, a vet, a doctor, in the Navy, a teacher and a lot of other things, but we don’t see her being an engineer or a programmer.
It somehow reminds me of Atlas Shrugged in a sad, sad way.

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