Central Wisconsin class teaches computer basics - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Central Wisconsin class teaches computer basics

MOSINEE (WAOW) - From starting a computer to scrolling on a smart phone, a group from Mosinee is doing their best to catch up with technology. It was all part of a computer basics class offered by University of Wisconsin-Extension and hosted at the Marathon County Public Library Mosinee Branch.

The class was designed to cover the very basics. It explained Wi-Fi, USB's, and simply how to open Internet Explorer.

But organizers say one of the most important lessons was to encourage people not to be afraid to sit down and fire up a computer.

With so many plugs, pieces, and programs, computers can be confusing.

"It's complicated for an elderly person," said Sharon Bemis of Mosinee.

It can be especially difficult if you're just now learning to use them.

"When computers were coming out, I was raising children and working on the farm and there just wasn't the time," said Noreen Schreiber of Mosinee.

Schreiber and Bemis were part of a group from Mosinee taking the time now to learn about these gadgets.

"It was made so it would be user friendly and you would have a touch screen," explained Wayne Staley while he used an iPad. Staley is a volunteer teacher for the program.

"I got started in computers from the time you had to move bits and bites to write code," said Staley.

Sharon Bemis got a computer from her grandson. One of her New Year's resolutions is to learn more about it.

"I'm going on it more and more every day. In the beginning, I hated it. I thought, 'Oh, I don't like you,'" said Bemis.

Staley says that's common.

"They are all migrants into it. This is not their thing. This is not their world. It's all brand new," said Staley.

One goal of the class is getting on the World Wide Web and then surfing it safely.

"You put it on the web, it's there forever," said Staley.

Some students say that's scary.

"I try to be very careful but you can goof up," said Bemis.

Organizers say the point of classes like this is to give users the tools to be smart online and the confidence to try getting online.

They suggest reaching out to UW-Extension or your local library if you or someone you know is interested in a computer basics class.

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