Computers: Feedback: Toys for the boys?

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The Independent Online
THE books I pick up in libraries and bookshops which purport to guide us innocents into the paths of computer awareness seem to be written in a totally incomprehensible dialect. I have so far resisted suggestions, blandishments, requests and final demands that we should buy a computer so that the boys (aged 11 and 12) could play games on it, but now that they are using computers (Acorn) in school there is no doubt that having a PC at home would be a help.

I should also like to replace my typewriter with a word-processor and it would be convenient to be able to keep records on disk. I do not understand the advertisements, still less the salesmen. How then can I make a start?

Harry Birkett


I HAVE sons aged six and eight and have resolutely kept them away from buying computer games although I know my eldest loved playing with a Game Boy belonging to a teacher on a recent skiing trip. I am of course worried that they will spend hours in front of a computer screen instead of reading or playing.

I have really never understood the differences between ordinary computers and these game boys. I possess an early Macintosh and a more recent Amstrad laptop which I've never liked, after the Macintosh, so I could let the eldest have this. Would this be a suitable machine for 'edutainment'?

John Huntingford



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