Sunday, February 19, 2006

Tom Pallister's First OS Critique

Today, my son Tom, aged 2 years, 4 months, offered his first critique of the Windows operating system; specifically, the appearance of the default cursor.

Since he'll undoubtedly become some kind of world-famous scientist, I thought I'd document it for future generations.

We have a little interactive CD on shapes, numbers & letters that we picked up for free somewhere, and Tom likes it. It's implemented using PowerPoint, actually, and he normally just clicks through it by tapping on the space bar. I was trying to teach him to use the mouse. When you move the mouse inside presentation mode of a PPT preso, the cursor arrow becomes visible.

Kim: "See that Tom? When you move the mouse, that arrow moves there."

Tom (surprised and pleased): "Tom's moving it!"

Kim: "Yeah."

Tom (pausing, squinting, examining cursor, pointing finger at screen): "LOOK AT DAT LITTLE TING!! It's small"

Kim: "Yeah."

Tom (giggling): "Dat's silly"

Tommorrow I'll have to see about getting Tom on the Vista beta program :-)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Kim, my name's Jonathan. I'm friends with Robin H. and I work in the game industry too. I found your blog linked from hers and am a regular reader.

Anyway, my son is also 2: he used to really like the keyboard activities at specifically Keyboard-o-rama (

The problem was, the content is so small (at the screen resolution I run at) that the Flash window kept losing focus and the game would stop responding to keyboard input. So what I recommend for your son is: visit the site, pull all the .swfs out of your browser cache, and then run them for him full-screen using the standalone Flash player. Just a tip...