How are you on technology?
Most of us these days have a basic knowledge, if only to use mobile phones, access the internet or send emails.
Others run their lives around having the latest gadgets, in the same way that past generations focused on smoking the trendiest cigarettes or wearing the right trainers.
Things move so fast with technology that queues form for the latest generation of iPad, smartphone, tablet, or whatever their ‘drug’ of choice, almost before they have come on the market.
The first Apple Macintosh went on sale 30 years ago – January 1984 – and I remember joining the Gazette as a full-time reporter to find that typewriters had been replaced by computers.
These very early Apple Macs had tiny screens and very simple programmes, but having had no training in their use, I was terrified. For a while, I secretly wrote everything in longhand before I tapped it in because I was scared I would press the wrong button and my words would disappear.
Music downloads? iPods? Pah. Remember travelling by car with a transistor radio, holding it up to the window, straining to hear a crackle of sound?
Later, we had cassette players built into the dashboard. I would always travel with a bag full of my favourite albums, or sometimes an Open University tape when I was doing a degree.
It all seemed so sophisticated – until they got stuck and the music ground to a halt. So many people had problems with tangled tapes that you could often spot coils of them on the motorways, presumably thrown out by frustrated drivers.
Back to typewriters and technology, and it was on the internet (hurrah) that I discovered it was a British engineer, Henry Mill, who was granted a patent for the first typewriter three centuries ago.
However, there is no record of it being built and sold until 1870.
Having being tied to deadlines for most of my life, I do admire someone with good delaying tactics.
Mr F and I have joined the superhighway in a small way as we now travel with satnav and iPod. But I’m glad to report that, though a young Mr F did once smoke smelly French cigarettes, we never did succumb to trendy trainers.