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Trials & Tribulations

Technical issues: We had a major problem installing the 2003 Microsoft Office suite on two of our three computers.  The computers would not recognize the burned disk; Kyle found a file from a web site that described the same problem we were experiencing and suggested that users download the file and use it in combination with the Microsoft Office Suite CD to solve the issue.  The file did not solve the problem, so we installed open office on these computers.

We had a brief wireless Internet connectivity problem with one of our computers. This problem was solved by disabling the computer’s firewall, restarting the computer, and altering the firewall settings in Windows Security Center. We were able to connect to the Internet after completing these steps.

Distance learning/ Communication process: It was very difficult to stay in contact with the administrators at Jones Park, but they were very receptive in person–meeting with us on several occasions, remaining open to our ideas about physical changes to the board room and recommendations about technology.

Software decisions: We decided to use mostly open source software. Since our research showed that elderly folk may use computers for a variety of reasons to meet a variety of needs, we did not think it was wise to purchase a ton of software. Open source software seemed to be a good choice for a start-up lab (at least until the Park District gets a regular crowd of elderly users who can then give advice about what software they would like on the computers).

Time constraints: We did not have time to locate another Microsoft Office Installation disk so we downloaded and installed Open Office. In addition, we did not have time to revisit the community center to plan for a computer lab.