Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Parker or Bic?

Lisa and I were fortunate to spend a morning chewing the ear of Dorothy Burt at Pt England School today. All part of the journey to develop a LMS that will work for our school, and we love the Teacher Dashboard interface which tidily organises and utlilises Google Apps.

In a small digression from our main focus, we were shown the netbooks that the senior students at Pt England all have this year.

Those who know me well know that I covet my iMac, love my iPhone and have an iPad on my wishlist. The wishlist also includes a new TV - must be the right one, 100Hz refresh rate, Sony or Samsung; a new car - was gunning for a CX7 but am reconsidering in light of petrol prices; and several items of camera equpiment, including a tripod - not just any tripod, must be a Manfrotto.

A conversation with Dorothy today has me thinking, why am I so hung up on getting what is perceived to be 'the best' when a less complex/costly item may do the job just as well?

Like why would a laptop or iPad be a better classroom tool than a humble netbook for the purpose for which it is to be used? The purpose being a digital pen. A recording device. On the journey home I compared it to using a Parker pen vs a Bic. You can still have your big pencil cases (grunty machines) on the side filled with your felt tips and glitter pens for when you need them for the big jobs. But for the everyday stuff, these are a lot more affordable and therefore accessible.

So can I transfer this model of thinking to my personal life? Does it mean I have to stop shopping at Mi Piaci and hit the No 1 Shoe Warehouse? Now that may be taking things a little too far!

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