Sometimes the internet is a wonderful thing. Masako Wakamiya creating an app at 81-years-old, what a joy. Being attacked by a Malware virus, not so much. But after a lot of tinkering around backstage That’s Not My Age is back in business. And if anyone’s remotely interested, this has involved moving to a different hosting company and employing an extra layer of security to future-proof this site. Fingers and toes, people. Fingers and toes (and grated teeth).

On retiring at the age of 60, Wakamiya was caring for her mother and feeling quite isolated when she bought her first computer. Setting up amidst a flurry of sweat and tears (and a lot less swearing than at That’s Not My Age Mansions over the last few days) the not-very-tech-savvy former bank employee says, eventually, ‘I got my wings, they took me to another world and changed the second half of my life!’ Now a self-proclaimed, information technology evangelist, Wakamiya encourages people to enrich their lives by connecting with each other online and to use ‘silver-friendly gadgets’. She has created a design app called Hindan that celebrates the Japanese festival Hinamatsuri and teaches users how to display 12 traditional dolls in the right order.

Watch Masako Wakamiya’s Ted x Tokyo talk HERE.

The recovery process has taken a lot longer than expected and I have missed the regular interaction with That’s Not My Age readers; 10 o’clock on a Friday night may seem like an odd time to be posting something online but it’s been a while and I want to get this out before my support team disappear for the weekend. After all the shenanigans this week, I hardly dare press the ‘publish’ button.

Is there anybody there?!


25 thoughts on “The highs and lows of life online

  1. I think it’s the most fabulous thing when all ages embrace technology, and Masako’s journey sounds fabulous!
    My mother (the 70’s model on my blog) is becoming more and more tech savvy. Well, at least she’s embraced the computer and gets on it daily! Getting her to use her cell phone is a whole different matter!
    And realizing that these electrons that run our computers can have a mind of their own, is very humbling at times!! My site went down a couple of weeks ago and luckily I was on the computer when it happened. Otherwise it could have been down for hours!!
    But I always say to myself (so I don’t get so upset), “it’s not life or death”—right?

  2. Hi Alyson! Yes I am here; I am from Argentina, so right now it is 7:19 pm. I am not a native speaker so I ask: What does shenanigans mean? By the way I tell you I am not a technology lover, you owe one of the very few websites I frecuently visit and you have helped me decide not to dye my hair anymore. I find your posts extremely interesting, and your beautiful writing helps me remind me of my english, which I have learned at the Scottish school I attended during my childhood and youth.

    1. I think your English is excellent and reads as ‘natural’.

      The word shenanigans refers to an act that is vexatious, troublesome, possibly harmful and definitely wrong – trickery may be involved. In some situations the word is used playfully, for example, when referring to naughty youth doing something mischievous, but not to all situations. It is not a harsh word, even if it’s being used to refer to something that has caused one an inordinate amount of distress.

      This is my “take” on the nuances of that word. I like it… the word I mean.

  3. There is Alyson and I am grateful, as always, to read your posts. Masada sounds fascinating. The realities of life have caught up with me this year. My wonderful husband passed away 3 weeks ago and my mother is now very, very poorly and has a short time to survive. I am aware, more than ever, of the importance of treasuring loved ones every day and would encourage your followers to do the same. Every day with a loved one is a special gift. Sorry to be so ‘heavy’ on a Friday evening but people in our lives are so precious.

    1. Sorry to hear about your husband, Sue. Agree, we do need to treasure our loved ones – they are the most important thing. Sending lots of love your way, Alyson x

    2. Wise words Sue, for all of us, thank you.
      At tough times such focus on the truly important parts of life will continue to give you strength I’m sure.
      All best wishes – from sunny, morning Melbourne.

      Anna W.

  4. Yes, we’re here! The site is a treat that I look forward to reading.
    And, yes, Sue, life is precious. You are not alone.

  5. Your post reminds me of Dagny, 104 years old. A Swedish lady who has become a star through her blog where she candidly describes her life and her history, commenting on daily things and reminding us that the good ol´days were not always so good. She is truly genuine, very sharp and down to earth, which gives me hope that not even being very very old needs to be a disaster.

  6. Yes, still here (in Texas) and looking forward to listening to this TED talk.
    The faster the world moves, and it has surpassed ‘fast’ to supersonic it seems, the more any computer malfunction or delay leaves me feeling like I’m alone at sea in a leaky boat. I feel your frustration!

  7. Ah yes been there and done that (hacked and moved to a new hosting provider). Will definitely be watching the Ted talk.

    It s an interesting topic. My own mother at 83 embraces technology whereas my in laws have absolutely none. I think they are truly missing out. They are immigrants from Italy (we are in Australia) and could talk to their families on a much more regular basis but they just aren’t interested. Scared perhaps? Not sure.

    Cheers Stephanie

  8. So sorry, Sue W. to hear of your sadnesses. The great tragedy of growing old. I care for my poor, suffering, disabled husband and get stressed in the process; I grieve for his struggles with life but the thought of life without him here…………. But we are not alone. Hang on to that.

    I am in my seventies, in love with, but terrified of technology. Wonderful when it works, horrific when it goes wrong because I am utterly helpless and dependent. But it is my lifeline to the world, keeping in touch with friends, politics, books and wonderful TNMA. So glad to see you back! Your work is our delight Alyson – many thanks! I do feel you have to guard against technology addiction, though – wherever you go people are gazing at their phones and not communicating with each other. I had a few hours’ break last week and sat in the sunshine, having a coffee, reading my book and a man who was passing stopped and said, ‘How wonderful to see someone reading a book instead of a phone!’ And with a cheery smile, he went on his way!

  9. I think to resist technology is a big mistake. I’ve had a tough few weeks with smartphone and password and email issues, but I have persisted and been helped a lot by the company’s tech support staff. It took many hours but the problem has been solved. I wouldn’t be without my computer or phone – I wish gadgets could be simplified but it’s the same with washing machines, etc… too many options and programmes – hey ho.

  10. I wondered where you’d got to and presumed it was me being rather impatient. It’s lovely to have you back. Technology’s great until it goes wrong. I agree about washing machines having too many programmes. Mine has a control panel like a starship when all I want to do is wash socks.

  11. Alyson I’m glad to hear that with help you have been able to surmount all of the tech problems and return to posting with confidence. When it all works it’s splendid but when it is bad it’s horrid. I speak as an early embracer of computers for interactive design and as someone with qualification in electronic graphics and interface design in the 90s. Now I am fond of my iPad and phone and iPod but not addicted and still like newspapers and magazines and books. And real interactions with real people and real art, like lunch in a pub with my son near his office then Paolozzi at Whitechapel Gallery. Highly recommended and cheering to see.
    My condolences to Sue W. For the loss of her husband. Too much exposure to ailing friends and relatives in past numbers of years. One needs to cherish the interactions and seize the day generally. Like walking in rare early spring sunlight in the park enjoying the fresh air, crocuses, snowdrops and newly flowering daffodils. A good weekend to all wherever you may be.

  12. So glad you’re back and your cyber-troubles vanquished. For all its acknowledged ills, I’m very grateful for the communities Social Media hosts, and the one you gather around you here is important in giving women of “nothatage” a place to hang out together, always inspired by your posts. Looking forward to the next one!

  13. i was wondering where you had gone off to….but i was imagining it was somewhere much more relaxing….like a spur of the moment beach vacation. sorry for your troubles…technology, can’t imagine living without it, but sometimes, when things like this happpen, i wonder what we have gotten ourselves into.

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